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ProgHead777
Sun, Jul 28, 2013, 12:46am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S5: The Assignment

I look at Rom as a genius who's been told he's an idiot for so long by his abusive brother (and probably other Ferengi, as well) that he himself sometimes forgets that he's not one.

Since it was only acknowledged once or twice in the above comments (and not at all by Jammer) I would like to also point out Rosalind Chao's fine performance in this episode.
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ProgHead777
Mon, Jul 22, 2013, 11:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Our Man Bashir

"You've destroyed zee vorld!" ~a shocked and dismayed Anastasia to Julian Bashir, secret agent XD

This one was a hoot! Anyone who spent any time analyzing the premise missed the point. This episode was a sugar pill to gird us for what was immediately to follow. That's all. It's okay for a show to have silly fun once in a while. Even Star Trek.
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ProgHead777
Mon, Jul 22, 2013, 12:09am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Rejoined

I agree with Jammer that the scene where Dax goes to Sisko for advice is the best in the entire episode. It was especially moving when Sisko tells her that, if she decides to pursue a relationship with Kahn, he will "back [Dax] all the way." The emotion in his voice and in his eyes was completely real and put a lump in my throat. Avery goddamn Brooks, man. What an actor.
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ProgHead777
Sun, Jul 21, 2013, 5:16am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: The Visitor

ANYONE, hardcore Star Trek fan or not, that can watch this episode and deny it's one of the most powerfully moving stories in the entire franchise, has got their head in the wrong place. Period. FIRST CLASS STORYTELLING. Nothing else need be said.

DS9 was something special. It wasn't just a F&*(ing spinoff. It had something to offer. I present this as exhibit A... of many, many more to come.
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ProgHead777
Fri, Jul 19, 2013, 5:21am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S3: Explorers

I loved every second of this episode. It's one of the shows from the first three seasons that stayed with me long after the series ended its initial run, after I rewatched it again years later, and I find now that I'm rewatching it again after another long interval, that it is one of the best episodes of Star Trek, period. That is, thanks to its honest, completely relatable depiction of close friendships (Miles and Julian) and family relationships (Sisko and his son). I believed every word of it for its entire duration. That's rare among Star Trek episodes. And all with not one single phaser or photon torpedo fired... Cardassian fireworks notwithstanding. ;) 4 stars.
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ProgHead777
Fri, Jul 19, 2013, 4:12am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S3: The Die Is Cast

"Do you know what the sad part is Odo? I'm a very good tailor." ~Garak

Well, damn. Just think about that for 3 minutes.

I love DS9 and I'm convinced that all of those fanboys that think it's the "worst" Star Trek series cannot possibly know their asses from a hole in the ground. Go watch "Keeping Up With the Kardashians". It's probably more your speed.
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ProgHead777
Thu, Jul 18, 2013, 2:44am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S3: Prophet Motive

I find myself very much in agreement with Jammer's reviews most of the time. I might quibble with a detail here or there and occasionally disagree more strongly on a point or two in a given episode, but for the most part, I consider his evaluations to be well thought out and they often open my eyes to details and ideas I hadn't thought of myself. But we definitely part ways when it comes to these "fluff" episodes. DS9 in particular could be a quite heavy and dark series, ever more so as it evolved. I look at these comedic fluff episodes as a tonic to prepare you for the heavy shit that's about to rain down, and I usually welcome them. Was this the funniest Trek had to offer? Definitely not. Not by a long shot. But criticizing it too harshly seems a bit like "kicking a puppy" to me. Take it for what it is worth. It's not going to ruin the series and it sure as hell isn't going to kill you. 3 stars.
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ProgHead777
Wed, Jul 17, 2013, 2:21am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S3: Fascination

I agree with Admirable Chrichton completely. The scene where Bareil attacks Sisko and Sisko defends himself effortlessly while sporting nothing but a mildly irritated expression on his face was laugh out loud funny (I liked the Bareil character okay as just a religious figure but his expanded role as Kira's lover in his later episodes was always downright off putting in my opinion).

Lwaxana's words to Odo at the end were quite touching and the kiss she gives Odo was the only one (besides those shared by Miles and Keiko, of course) in the entire episode that didn't make me cringe.

Overall, I can't deny that the episode as a whole was silly and mostly pointless. I would add one more star to Jammer's rating, however. And no, this was not the worst episode of the series, even only up to this point.
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ProgHead777
Tue, Jul 16, 2013, 10:43pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S3: The Abandoned

The only gripe I have about this episode is how it introduces and describes the Ketracel White (though it isn't called that yet). Throughout the rest of the series, Ketracel is referred to as a "drug" that Jem'Hadar are addicted to. But in this episode, it's established that the ketracel is something the Jem'Hadar require for the proper functioning of their biology. In that sense, it's actually an essential nutrient rather than an addictive, narcotic chemical. The Jem'Hadar are no more "addicted" to Ketracel than human beings are "addicted" to vitamin C. Ketracel withdrawal is analogous to scurvy, which is fatal if left untreated.

Not that that changes the fact that the need for Ketracel was deliberately engineered in order for the Founders and the Vorta to maintain absolute control of the Jem'Hadar. I just wonder why everyone insisted on calling it a drug when it clearly wasn't.

The above is really just nitpicking, by the way. This was a very good episode.
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ProgHead777
Mon, Jul 15, 2013, 1:45am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: The Jem'Hadar

The decision to show the Jem'Hadar annihilating a Galaxy-class starship was a smart one. It was a impactful scene that demonstrated quite effectively that the Dominion was a very serious threat to the Federation, perhaps even more so than the Borg.

I liked the scene where Quark points out to Sisko the dark chapters of Human history for which the Ferengi have no analog. Sisko's startled reaction to the word "slavery" was particularly noteworthy. EXCELLENT performances from both actors.
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ProgHead777
Mon, Jul 15, 2013, 12:32am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: Tribunal

Obviously corrupt legal systems exist. But that corruption, in the real world, takes place completely, or at least mostly behind the scenes. The Cardassian system as depicted here, on the other hand, is a blatant farce. In my opinion, this episode makes the Cardassian people appear either unrealistically brain-dead stupid for believing that justice is actually being carried out (how could entire species of such blithering idiots ever form a functioning society of any kind to begin with?), or collectively evil in a very cartoonish way.
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ProgHead777
Sat, Jul 13, 2013, 5:49am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: Crossover

Upon embarking on my third complete viewing of DS9 (after watching it during its initial run and rewatching it again some years later) this was one of the episodes of the first three seasons that stuck in my mind and I anticipated seeing again. I can't really add anything to Jammer's excellent review... except one minor thing. The scene where mirror-Odo is destroyed by phaser fire is one of the most startling and striking visual effects in the history of Star Trek. I would love to know exactly how they accomplished it. It was quite convincing... and, as I said, startling. Besides that slight addendum, I can't think of anything substantive to add to this review.
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ProgHead777
Sat, Jul 13, 2013, 12:08am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: The Maquis, Part I

Much of Bernie Casey's dialog appears to have been overdubbed. It could be that there was a technical problem during shooting that necessitated this, so some benefit of the doubt should be given to the actor regarding his performance. It must be difficult for an actor to give a dynamic vocal performance sitting alone in a recording studio with a list of sentences to read into a microphone while simultaneously trying to reverse-lip-synch your own performance. And on a tight TV episode production cycle schedule to boot. Maybe it was "wooden" to begin with... but maybe it was fine and the mics just weren't working correctly.

Technobabble nitpick: M-class ASTEROID? Why isn't that an oxymoron?
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ProgHead777
Thu, Jul 11, 2013, 1:51am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: Whispers

Mister P: I believe it's been shown already that Quark does not have all of the Rules of Acquisition committed to memory. Maybe he knew the rule, he just couldn't recall exactly which number it was. Or maybe he just made the rule up to justify the questions he was asking O'Brien about the Parada.
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ProgHead777
Fri, Jul 5, 2013, 6:01am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

@Patrick Someone has a chip on their shoulder. I don't believe for a second that you gave DS9 an open-minded fair shot. You decided before you watched one second that you didn't like it and it probably had something to do with things that loudmouth DS9 fans said to you regarding your PREFERRED Star Trek series. Oh well. It's your loss.

Personally, I think there's something worthwhile in every Trek series. As a result, my Star Trek universe is bigger than yours. So nyah nyah. ;)
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ProgHead777
Fri, Jul 5, 2013, 5:34am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S1: Q-Less

@Patrick The quality of the series began improving in the 3rd season, improved still more in season 4, but really gained its reputation among its devotees with seasons 5 through 7 (though naturally there are plenty of missteps along the way). That's provided of course that you're approaching the series with an open mind, which, if you're already questioning its potential in the first 3rd of the very first season, I can't help but doubt. Remember, the first two seasons of TNG, with the exception of one or two standout episodes (The Measure of a Man comes to mind), were uniformly pretty lousy. Just keep going and forget about any arguments you may have had with DS9 fanatics. Judge the series by its own merits, not the hyperbolic ravings of its followers.
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ProgHead777
Fri, Jul 5, 2013, 5:11am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S1: Q-Less

I believe this marks the only appearance of the term "technobabble" in Star Trek dialog. A little self-deprecating humor is always welcome in Trek, in my opinion. And I found the sight-gag of Q repeatedly returning Vash's luggage, fully packed, back to her shoulder every time she unpacks it to be one of the best genuine belly laughs that DS9 had in its entire run. Otherwise, this episode is utterly forgettable and I think two and half stars is a stretch. It's not near as bad as Voyager's Q2, but this is easily one of the weakest Q episodes in Star Trek history. Two stars from me.
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ProgHead777
Wed, Jul 3, 2013, 2:04am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Endgame

I feel that Voyager's grand finale was a terrible missed opportunity. In the end, I felt cheated, even on the less-than-great terms the series had established up to this point. I would expound on all of that, but I just simply don't have the energy. Voyager had a great premise, the potential of which was abandoned almost immediately by the writers and showrunners, probably out of fear of alienating the Trek demographic. It's swan song felt shallow and abrupt and deeply insincere, to an extent that I feel is completely unforgivable.

Nevertheless, I must admit that Voyager's best episodes, relatively few and far between though they may be, were truly excellent. "The Year of Hell" in particular stands out as one of the best stories Star Trek as whole has ever told.

Aside from that, the nicest thing I can say about Voyager is that it had, in my opinion, far and away the best opening credits sequence and main musical theme of any Star Trek series. Relatively faint praise, but it's the best I can do.

I'm going to start re-watching DS9 now. I've watched TOS and TNG in their entirety more times than I'm willing to admit and I've never managed to get through the first two seasons of Enterprise because I just can't quite convince myself that I'm actually watching Star Trek.

After DS9, perhaps I will watch all of the feature films in sequence... excluding Nemesis, which is, in fact, worse than "Threshold". ;)

Thanks for the reviews, Jammer. They have enhanced my 3rd and (possibly) final re-watching of Voyager IMMENSELY. I look forward to reading all of your DS9 reviews.
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ProgHead777
Tue, Jul 2, 2013, 7:31am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Homestead

I have watched Voyager in its entirety three times now over the last decade and some change. In the previous viewings, I was as devout a Neelix hater as you are likely to find. I called him the Jar-Jar Binks of the Star Trek universe. I cheered at the scene where a mentally disturbed Tuvok strangled a holographic simulation of him to death. I frequently implored various other crew members on the other side of the TV screen to "accidentally" beam him into cold, dark, airless space. I loathed him to the point that I would seriously consider skipping and episode where he was the central character.

In this round, however, things were different for some reason. Perhaps it's simply that I've softened with age. I really don't know. At some point during my current Voyager review, I realized that Neelix's most irritating qualities were to be found mostly in the first three seasons or so. After that, he became very much a background character and his scenes were usually of comedic intent and I must admit they were, more often than not, successful in that intent. Interspersed throughout were some genuinely poignant moments (but never anything too profound or moving). I can't really account for it, but somewhere along the way in this third round I began to like Neelix. IT'S CRAZY, I KNOW! And in fact, I didn't even realize the extent of it myself until this episode. The scene where Neelix walks along the corridor lined with Voyager crew members assembled to bid him final farewell reduced me to a hot, sobbing mess, and I simply cannot explain why. I think it comes down to Ethan Phillips. As poorly written a character as Neelix was, Mr. Phillips brought a sincerity to the part that I, eventually, just couldn't resist. I was sad to see him go.
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ProgHead777
Tue, Jul 2, 2013, 3:59am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Natural Law

I was intrigued by the depiction of the "primitive" culture but I agree that plot seemed to be treading water for most of the episode. The missed opportunity to explore the complexities of the Prime Directive is disappointing.
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ProgHead777
Tue, Jul 2, 2013, 1:39am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Author, Author

My only gripe with this episode, and I must stress that it's a very minor one, is that it doesn't make much sense to me that it would be such a difficult question whether to extend the same rights afforded to Data in "The Measure of a Man" to the Doctor. The technology is different but the fundamental question is the same: is artificial intelligence SENTIENT? Obviously there are many types of artificial intelligence. The computers aboard starships and space stations (and presumably in many other facilities) are obviously a form of "weak" AI. The same is true to some extent for holodeck characters (though you have to wonder about TNG's Moriarty; he was obviously sentient, should he be given the same rights as well?). But Data and the Doctor are examples of "strong" AI, so shouldn't the rights afforded to one automatically apply to the other? If anything, the Doctor is an even more obvious case because he's demonstrated the full range of human emotions whereas Data, at the time of "The Measure of a Man", was totally incapable of even a single emotion. In any case, despite that minor quibble, I enjoyed this episode immensely and I agree completely with Jammer's review.
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ProgHead777
Mon, Jul 1, 2013, 12:40am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: The Void

@BirdMan (first post) re: Void-native aliens.

It could be that they were a species that was trapped in the void eons ago. There's no indication of how long the anomaly has existed and no reason to think, considering how densely populated the entire galaxy seems to be in the Star Trek universe, that the void hasn't been trapping ships continuously during all that time. Their species, provided a steady stream of captured/derelict starships and an initial biology that provided unique advantages in such an environment, could have evolved to thrive in the void. The ability to mask their lifesigns, survive in low-oxygen environments for extended periods and their rat-like ability to find and use resources. Natural selection has created stranger things... in the Star Trek universe, of course. It's all science-fantasy, after all.
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ProgHead777
Sun, Jun 30, 2013, 11:30pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Prophecy

It's funny that so many people find the "Neelix sex-comedy" sub-sub-plot to be ridiculous and off-putting. I'm not saying it's NOT those things but it's still the ONLY entertaining (meaning it made me chuckle... moderately) thing in this entire episode. It's a pretty bad episode when I cite Neelix as the best part. One and a half stars from me.
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ProgHead777
Fri, Jun 28, 2013, 1:14am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Unimatrix Zero, Part II

The only thing I would like to add to this review is that the scene where the Queen visits UMZ was VERY good. I found her conversation with the child to be one of the most chilling scenes in all of Star Trek and the actress playing the Queen in particular absolutely NAILED it. Nevermind the logical inconsistencies (that should be the tagline for the entire series, though, shouldn't it?), that scene was CREEPY and the "Serpent in The Garden" symbolism was not lost on me. I would give the half a star back based on that alone.
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ProgHead777
Thu, Jun 27, 2013, 3:29am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Fury

I'll tell you what this episode was about. It was a final %#$* YOU to Jennifer Lien from TPTB. The fact is, Jennifer Lien is the only established regular cast member of a Star Trek series ever to be FIRED. To add insult to injury, she was fired ONLY to make room for a large pair of cybernetic breasts. I like Jeri Ryan and I like the character of Seven of Nine, but the fact is that she was brought on the show PRIMARILY to add sex-appeal to Voyager and improve the abysmal ratings, end of story. That the character quickly went on to be much more than merely something for mouth-breathers to ogle doesn't change the fact that that was the primary motivation behind her addition to the show.
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