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Aaron
Tue, Dec 18, 2018, 8:01am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S6: Valiant

Not a perfect episode, but good enough. Star Trek is a somewhat authoritarian show in that the chain-of-command is often seen as absolute and as an end unto itself. Where is democracy in the Trek universe? Why do we never see the characters voting on anything?

This is a nice change-of-pace episode that critically examines the chain-of-command and its authoritarian tangents. The medals, the obsession with rank, the absolute commands...it was great to see a critical light cast on these story telling elements that traditionally Trek rarely challenges.
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Aaron
Sun, Dec 16, 2018, 9:15am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S6: Waltz

Among the worst ever DS9 episodes. I'm surprised this was written by Ron Moore as typically he is a good writer. The story's focus is focused way too much on the "internal" and not enough on the "external". Sitting around in a cave for 45 minutes listening to Dukat's psychological problems is not good television.

The other problem is Dukat's inconsistent character. The writers try to make him out to be a super villain which is boring, cliche, two-dimensional and inconsistent with occasional bouts of humanity we do see from him.

What would be much more interesting was if Dukat really WASN'T a villain of the occupation. That would be a fascinating twist and a breath of fresh air for his character. Instead we are stuck with Dukat as the 2-dimenensional villain and the bajorans as a 2-dimenensional race whose sole focus is victimhood.
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Aaron
Wed, Dec 12, 2018, 11:14am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: Soldiers of the Empire

Ok, but a bit disappointing for a Moore episode who is usually better. The story had potential but was too inward focused and lacked sufficient outward focus. The plot focused on cheesy prattle and conflicts among the klingon crew inside of the ship instead of the search for the Klingon ship and dealing with the Dominion (which were much more interesting). For all the talk of battle...we don't have one battle scene in the entire 45 minute episode.

Something else that was a bit annoying was the inconsistency the writers have shown with relative ship strength. Based on other episodes one bird of prey is nowhere near as strong as one jem'hadar ship. Yet in this episode the implication was otherwise.
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Aaron
Sun, Dec 9, 2018, 8:11am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: Nor the Battle to the Strong

Not a good episode. A story needs change of direction...unpredictability...twists... This had none...this was a basic fight/flight/survival episode that remains the same from the beginning to the end. 10 minutes of substance stretched over 45 minutes...it didn't work.
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Aaron Smith
Mon, Dec 3, 2018, 7:48am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: The Sword of Kahless

Starts out as a good adventure story, but then devolves into boring quibbling between the crew. With better editing and a b-plot for filler this could have been a great episode.
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Aaron
Thu, Nov 15, 2018, 5:49pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Move Along Home

This was Avery Brooks' least favorite episode. I actually kind of liked it especially with the Quark storyline. Those of us that grew up with DND are likely more apt to appreciate this.
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Aaron
Thu, May 24, 2018, 8:45pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: Let He Who Is Without Sin...

This is a pretty terrible episode obviously. For some reason Worf's soccer speech reminds me of the scene in Gremlins (spoiler alert!) where Phoebe Cates tells the story of her dad dressing up in a Santa costume and breaking his neck trying to slide down the chimney at xmas. Both are WTF? moments.
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Aaron B.
Tue, May 22, 2018, 4:48pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Move Along Home

I agree with those who said this feels like a TOS or TNG script, which fits poorly into DS9. How many times were those crews stuck helplessly into a fighting arena or puzzle by an advanced alien of one sort or another? The only difference here is the aliens came to them.

The biggest problem is the lack of consequences, but DS9 wasn't that heavily serialized yet, so that makes it seem worse in hindsight. It's one of the worst episodes of Season 1, but that just shows how strong the season was overall.
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Aaron
Thu, Nov 16, 2017, 5:42pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S6: Profit and Lace

"DS9's worst episodes have been Ferengi ones"

For me, they're by far the best. They're vibrant and funny, in stark contrast to DS9 which is for the most part dull and monotonous.
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Aaron
Sat, Sep 23, 2017, 12:28am (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S1: About a Girl

Also in more general terms,

Jammer, I'm so happy that you're reviewing again. I'm sure this is one of the sites on the Web that I have been visiting the longest. I was definitely here back in the 20th century. I still re-read your old reviews regularly as I re-watch Trek.

I'm happy and cautiously optimistic with Orville. I enjoyed episode 2, and episode 3 was clearly a step up and a bit of a change in tone. I'm looking forward to where it goes from here. I am terrified it will get cancelled and I hope that it has a chance to find its niche.

Also - and I know it's off topic for this thread - but I'm looking forward to checking out Discovery in a couple of days, too. I've been avoiding reading much about it on the Internet. A) Scared of spoilers, and B) too much negativity! Fingers-crossed!!
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Aaron
Sat, Sep 23, 2017, 12:22am (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S1: About a Girl

I wonder if the lack of a transporter is because the transporter itself is too often a 'get out of jail free' card in Trek stories, and so they too often had to come up with convoluted reasons to disable it? By not having one, they don't have to do the tightrope walk in their stories.
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Aaron
Fri, May 26, 2017, 11:40am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S4: Living Witness

Even as a fan of the Star Trek universe, I unfortunately have not had time to always catch every episode out there. So recently via the Heroes and Icons Network running all of the series, I just saw this episode. It was fantastic and timely. I had just been to a symposium led by a historian whose research spans revisionism and censorship to paint a different story of ancestoral piety. So what was interesting was the faceoff between truth and present-day body-politic. So for many like myself, truth is extremely important and I want to engage that path. For others, it is ironically not always about truth, it's about a quasi-Orwellian world for which they want to live in to manage their notions of truth not subject to scrutiny. What was interesting was that the doctor's desire not to be responsible for the fight, ie. be decompiled, in order that some cold-war would persist. And perhaps his sincerity at the end is what maybe convinced the curator that he wasn't lying for even a split-second. He was of an open mind but maybe not convinced.

I think a show like this is good for people to see to understand what it means to have an open-mind because in today's political climate everyone thinks they have the corner on the truth. Truth is it's somewhere in the middle. And we need to be able to have some flexibility or openness that new evidence will shed light or even turn things 180degrees.
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Aaron
Tue, Sep 6, 2016, 8:05pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S5: Cause and Effect

This is one of my favourite tng eps. Everything works -- there's no sense of padding, clunky dialogue, aliens/guest actor of the week with obvious cartoonish ulterior motives, or any terrible b or c plots tacked on. For once, little is dumbed down for the audience to make sure they "get it." I've never been a fan of Dr. Crusher but she's great in this (as well as another fave of mine "Remember Me."

I remember cheering each time the ship blew up the first time I saw it, because I was so pissed off about the previous episode "The Outcast."
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Aaron
Tue, Sep 6, 2016, 7:25pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S5: The Outcast

I've disliked this ep ever since it first aired. I was 21 at the time and struggling with my own coming out in college.

I'm surprised that nobody in the comments has made reference to David Gerrold's TNG script "Blood and Fire" that featured a gay couple. Roddenberry and TPTB of course shot the script down. I remember reading in the early 90s that Roddenberry regretted trek not being inclusive of homosexuality and pledged to introduce a gay character in a trek series. Of course he ended up dying before anything substantive happened and trek devolved (de-evolved-?) into a tawdry t&a fest to boost ratings.
It's weird watching the show almost 30 years after its premiere. I don't/can't see myself existing in their world. There's something smothering about it. Of course I can totally see myself inhabiting most other modern later scifi shows (DS9, BSG, Farscape, B5, etc.).
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Aaron
Fri, Sep 2, 2016, 9:19pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S5: Violations

God, those "mind rape" montages reminded me of horrible early 80s long form music videos. I wish the writers had credited the audience's intelligence and stop having those overlong shot of the guest star looking menacing when he thinks all eyes are off of him.
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Aaron
Thu, Sep 1, 2016, 9:36pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S5: New Ground

So Alexander's hanging out alone unsupervised in Worfs quarters when he's not in school? Shouldn't there be someone from social services or something?

Oh and the one thing that struck me as hilarious is Alexander's holodeck fight scene. It reminded me of a parody out of the Simpsons with Maggie replaced by Alexander slaying monsters 10x their size.
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Aaron
Mon, Aug 29, 2016, 12:00pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S5: The Game

I see Leffler and Crusher as two very high-functioning autistic people with a high-degree of social awkwardness, which would make sense how the whole game thing kind of missed them until it they were the only ones left not hooked. The two of them play well off each others quirks, but I sense zero chemistry. They both read as asexual to me.
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Aaron
Thu, Aug 18, 2016, 7:53pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: Qpid

I'd give it 1 1/2 stars for the two good Worf moments and Data getting shot by Troi's arrow.

Perhaps it's because I sped the playback up to get through it, but the pacing seems off. Plus, that's a pretty weak-assed archeological conference if you ask me. For a being who's supposedly all powerful you'd think he'd know already of Vash's self serving and duplicitous nature. I'd like to think he was really testing her and the whole Robin Hood cosplay was simply a ruse.
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Aaron
Thu, Aug 18, 2016, 7:32pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: The Nth Degree

I am curious as to how the obvious conservative utopia that is the Star Trek universe will come about? Perhaps you all can share your manifestos with us who sadly lack the chemical imbalance for us to grasp its complexities.
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Aaron
Sun, Aug 14, 2016, 8:17am (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: Devil's Due

This is a fun fly-weight episode, about as close to camp as any post S2 episode can be. It does play/feel like a S2 ep, without the horrible stop-motion sfx, thank Ardra.

The one thing I find curious/odd is that toward the beginning that they mention that the planet used to be highly advanced but "turned their back on technology" to eventually create an agrarian society. It would seem unlikely to me that an advanced society would come up with such a myth. It would be like our planet making up something similar a couple hundred years from now (assuming we make it that far). Then again this was originally written in the mid-late 70s...

Also, I'm surprised that nobody mentioned it, but Patrick Stewart has been performing "A Christmas Carol" live off and on since the late 80s in both the UK and the states. My mom sent me a two cassette copy of it years ago and Stewart, of course, is absolutely spellbinding.
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Aaron
Sat, Aug 13, 2016, 4:56pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: The Loss

It's funny -- I picked this episode to watch randomly a few months ago after not seeing any tng for years and I pretty much hated it. Now, after re-watching the show in chronological order I actually really liked it.

I felt the way that Troi described it ("surfaces without depth") was a great descriptor. It would be like humans going about their life but feeling an emptiness not unlike depression.

The only thing that truly bothered me and it extends beyond this episode is that Troi is the only counsellor onboard the entire ship? Sure there's some crew members with degrees in psychology but no other counsellors. Yes, people in a more perfect society can probably handle their mental and emotional health better than we can, but come on! For example look at "Q Who" -- 19 crew members were killed by the Borg. It rattled Ensign Gomez and she probably didn't get a chance to meet any of them. I imagine the crew members and possible family members of the dead would need counselling. It would have been nice if they had introduced someone who worked under Troi but oh well.

I like the idea of an empath being on the bridge for the captain and in other situations but shouldn't there be some sort of disclosure of her abilities to whomever they're dealing with? Seems somewhat underhanded to me.
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Aaron
Fri, Aug 12, 2016, 10:21am (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: Future Imperfect

Also, I guess this ends the interesting streak of family-centric episodes.
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Aaron
Thu, Aug 11, 2016, 8:47pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: Future Imperfect

This was a fun episode that hadn't seen since it first aired. But my god, that alien child is so cheesy. Did they bring back whoever did the sfx for season two for this episode?
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Aaron
Thu, Aug 11, 2016, 2:45pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: Legacy

Yeah, this is a so-so episode for me. The thing that bumps it up a bit is the continuity with Tasha Yar. I'm not really a fan of him, but I would have liked to seen more of Riker in this episode dealing with the guilt of Tasha dying under his command. Also, for a planet teetering on the edge of lawlessness and scarcity everyone seems really well-fed.
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Aaron
Thu, Aug 11, 2016, 2:26pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: Remember Me

This is one of my favorite episodes of tng. Yeah the traveler appearing was lame, but Wesley was working directly from Kosinski's equations so it does make some sense that he would appear.

The part of the episode that makes me laugh is near the end where Wesley passes out and Picard runs past him slumped down on the console to get to Beverly. Beverly sees Wesley on the ground but speaks to the traveler first and then makes her way over to her son who is starting to recover.
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