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Baron Samedi
Mon, May 13, 2019, 3:32pm (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S2: The Deadly Years

@Jason R. I completely agree and always found it odd that this episode even had a lukewarm reception among fans, when nothing that happens in it makes even the most minimal amount of sense. Even as a little kid, I always found this episode completely ludicrous on every level. The slow and repetitive execution stops it from even being goofy/campy fun.
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Baron Samedi
Sun, Apr 21, 2019, 4:52pm (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S2: Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2

@Dom - that article was a great read, thanks for posting it.
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Baron Samedi
Thu, Apr 18, 2019, 9:44pm (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S2: Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2

This'll be my first comment on Season 2 of Discovery. In my latest effort to beat the system, I started watching a month ago and breezed through the whole thing within a single CBS All Access pay period. It is a bit of a blur to me as a result, and maybe that's affecting me to some extent, but I don't think that altered my experience very much.

The episode-by-episode quality was definitely up from the first season in terms of consistency. There were no outright flops like Season 1's finale or "Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum". The cast was quite good, though I still don't think Ash works as a character (certainly not as a romantic interest of Michael) and the new characters were great (except Leland, who I never found to be an interesting antagonist before or after Control took him over).

But despite Season 2's consistency, I liked Season 1 more. When I look back on it, I can discern a dozen or so interesting character and story arcs in Season 1. Some of them fell totally flat, but many were fun and interesting, and most at least tried to have coherent parameters and a discernible point. I enjoyed getting to know the new characters and the whole romp through the mirror universe was a blast.

Season 2 had some great qualities. Central to them was Anson Mount, who was really superb as Pike. I didn't expect Discovery to portray Pike as effectively as it did, and Anson added depth and grace to the role, helping to fill the void of Trekkian idealism that Season 1's wartime setting lacked. Also, the more standalone episodes, including the episodes with strong standalone components, worked quite well. Saru had some fascinating storylines. The return to Talos IV (which was admittedly heavily intertwined with the larger story) was clever and well-executed. I found the scene between Pike and Vina genuinely moving.

The central problem is that the second half of the season went all-in with a plot I could never bring myself to care about. I never bought that the personal character journey of Michael would be so heavily intertwined with Control destroying "all sentient life," which itself is absurd. The show tried to convince us that the overriding plot was driven by the characters, but it wasn't. It was just about itself.

There's a charming humility, at least by comparison, with the writing approach taken by other Trek series. I've chided Enterprise a fair amount in the past, but in Season 3, the writers knew better than to link the Xindi weapon storyline with some intimate secret from Archer's past. I feel like the Discovery writers would have made the head Xindi scientist Archer's long-lost alien stepfather and intertwined scenes of Archer dealing with childhood trauma with the Enterprise's efforts to stop Earth from being destroyed, and that would obviously have been insufferable.

I just had to lose interest in this storyline as the connections between the fate of "all sentient life" and Michael Burnham piled up. I really like Sonequa Martin-Green's performances - more than most people here, it seems - but constantly bringing Michael's personal issues into the story usually felt unnecessary. These connections probably felt clever in the writing room, but most of these personal journeys intruded on the crew's duty and felt out of place, because the fate of "all sentient life" is way more important than whatever personal issues the show wants to explore about Michael's past or any of the other characters. There were so many emotional scenes (all over-dramatized and over-scored) where I yearned for the urgency with which the Star Trek: Enterprise crew treated their mission to destroy the Xindi weapon - and that was just to save all life on Earth, rather than the whole universe. These characters on Discovery should have been freaking out constantly at the prospect of all sentient life, everywhere, dying. Since the writers clearly didn't want to portray the crew acting this way, they should have lowered the stakes.

I lost track of the plot at a certain point, because I stopped trusting the show to handle the plot in a coherent, worthwhile, or satisfying manner. A recurring issue was that the music, editing, and flashy visuals put everything on the same level of high dramatic urgency, muddling the narrative further. It's too bad, because there was a lot of talent and competence always on display. And in fairness, the first half of the season was quite solid, even if it wasted a fair amount of effort on a fundamentally flawed long-term story.

I tried putting together an episode-by-episode list of ratings, but it's not very interesting this time around. I gave everything a 5-7 out of 10, except for "If Memory Serves," which deserves a 9 or a maybe even a 10. By comparison, Season 1 ran the gauntlet between scores of 1 and 9, which made for an often frustrating but ultimately more memorable experience.

At the end of the previous season, I wrote, "If the writers can focus on delivering a smaller amount of plot in a satisfying manner, then Discovery could end up being a great show. My primary worry is that some CBS ratings data analysts have resolutely determined that Discovery will lose a significant portion of its audience if the plot isn't always moving at a breakneck pace, so these changes won't actually happen." While the first half of this season showed some promise on that front, the second half succumbed to it, and I'm more pessimistic than before about Discovery ever becoming a show that people, years from now, will want to revisit.
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Baron Samedi
Wed, Apr 3, 2019, 10:25pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S2: Cogenitor

As someone who has praised this episode heavily twice here already and continues to see it as the best entry in the whole Enterprise series, I want to describe one element of it that I think several commenters from the last 6 months or so seem to be missing.

As a backdrop, it's fair criticism that Archer's attitude here contradicts his earlier behavior. I like this episode precisely because Archer enforces ideas that he failed to live up to earlier, as, in my view, the way Archer acts here fits with how he should generally have been acting all along. If you want to hold that against this episode, go ahead, but I'd rather the series take actions to right its course than continuously present its crew as hotheads eager to jump into conflicts they doesn't understand.

Anyway, the key problem within the episode doesn't really have to do with cultural relativism, but with Trip acting unilaterally with limited information. The episode cleverly provides no understandable moral justification for the oppressive treatment of the cogenitors by the Vissians, but that doesn't mean that no moral justification could possibly exist (though I can't come up with one), nor does it mean that Trip's actions are necessarily beneficial to the cogenitors (even if Archer had granted asylum to the cogenitor we meet in the episode). One of the Vissians states how the Enterprise crew knows nothing about their culture, and the point isn't that their culture is inherently deserving of unwaivering respect, but that the crew knows *almost* nothing about it and isn't yet qualified to make a judgment, much less act on that judgment.

Even if it's true (which the evidence identified in the episode certainly supports) that the Vissians are oppressing the cogenitors, and even if it's also true that Starfleet has a right to try to end that oppression, doing so effectively requires immense research, resources, and time. Just look at interventionist regime change policies, social welfare programs, attempts at democratization through international aid, or any other number of similar efforts on Earth, among humans, motivated to at least some degree by a desire to remedy problems within a complex culture, to get an idea of how difficult it is to produce positive change through such efforts.

There's plenty on Earth today that's just as appalling as what the Vissians are doing to the cogenitors, but that goes unacknowledged by its perpetrators who turn around and condemn other cultures. For example, the treatment of the animals in the factory farming industry (though I'm not interested in arguing the merits of animal rights or vegetarianism/veganism here), especially when adjusted for the scale of death and destruction that industry entails, is (or at least can reasonably be construed as being) a far worse moral crime than the Vissians' treatment of the cogenitors. Yet, I doubt many would be comfortable with an alien race interfering with our society to take action in response to that problem within days of making first contact with humans and while in possession of little information about us.

As Archer describes it, "We're out here to meet new species, not to tell them what to do." I could imagine, after years of diplomatic overtures and the establishment of positive relationships, humans attempting to encourage reformation within Vissian culture so as to bring about equal rights and respect for the cogenitors. Someday, humans may even have a moral duty to attempt to combat the oppression within VIssian culture that they first encounter in this episode, and maybe action akin to what Trip did will at that point be justified. But such an effort should only be undertaken after thoroughly researching and understanding the problem, as well as the impact any such actions would have on Vissian culture.
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Baron Samedi
Tue, Jun 26, 2018, 5:11pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: Nemesis

@Cody B Glad you made it through all of TNG! As an avid DS9 fan I'm excited for you to be moving onto it. As to Voyager and Enterprise, I'll throw in my ten cents.

I think that Voyager is absolutely worth it, especially if you liked TNG so much. It has its share of flops but it's also a ton of fun. The peak is probably the final stretch of episodes of season 3 through the first couple episodes in Season 6. I've grown to appreciate it more in in retrospect, especially after the constant hyperbolic filmmaking and loud action of Discovery. It has a huge variety of types of episodes, almost all self-contained, and you never know what you're going to get in terms of genre or quality. It's also a bit more of an action/adventure show than TNG overall.

As to Enterprise, I find the first two seasons to be mostly garbage, but it gets good in seasons 3 and 4. The first two seasons are mostly standalone episodes, too, so they are pretty skippable. I'd honestly recommend watching the pilot and maybe "Dear Doctor" (the most divisive episode of the series, to see what all the fuss is about), "Cogenitor", "Regeneration", the Season 2 finale and then just watching Seasons 3 and 4. But you're welcome to watch the whole thing if you feel like being a completist.

Anyhow, that's just my opinion.
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Baron Samedi
Fri, Jun 15, 2018, 9:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

I'll add to concerns expressed above that there's nothing to celebrate in bringing in
Kurtzman. Discovery's writing has been a mess so far (even though i enjoyed the first season a bit more than most here) and bringing in the guy from Into Darkness and The Mummy (2017) isn't going to help. Kurtzman is a guy who works well within the big money prime time network/big studio system despite a thoroughly mediocre output (Star Trek '09 is probably the best thing he's helped write), so I'm not surprised he got elevated, given that Discovery plays so much more like a transparent cash-in on an established franchise rather than a real attempt to recapture the Trek spirit or to make any kind of a genuine commentary. Kurtzman seems like he's talented at navigating rewrite requests and following commands from executives managing millions of dollars of investments, and that's what CBS wants so that's what we're stuck with.
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Baron Samedi
Wed, Apr 18, 2018, 11:39am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Seventh Season Recap

I want to note one overlooked quality that I think Season 7 did brilliantly. As the earlier seasons focused more and more on the Hologram Doctor (as well as 7 of 9) at the expense of other characters, we developed increasing sympathy for him and acceptance of him as a rights-holding member of the crew.

Season 7 built on that sentiment, even turning the tables on us at times, quite a bit in "Critical Care," "Author, Author," and "Flesh and Blood." The final moments of "Author, Author" showing at least dozens of Doctors in a mine conjure up another reference to TNG's "Measure of a Man," as we see the slavery Picard and Guinan feared would result from the a denial of Data's rights. If we accept the EMH as deserving of some rights, then what we're seeing is abhorrent injustice, precisely the result we happily saw defeated for androids in "Measure of a Man". "Flesh and Blood" also carries that idea of the EMH as deserving rights to a logical conclusion - if they have rights, then the EMH's betrayal of Voyager is valid and even moral, as the endless suffering of the hologram Hirogen hunting ground victims constitutes a perfectly valid reason for them to fight back and kill living beings in the process.

Of course, the solution to all of this may very well be to deny the EMH any rights whatsoever, but we've developed so much sympathy for him as a character over the past seven years that we don't want to. But it may be the right thing to do. I'm not sure I'd rule the same way as the presiding judge in "Measure of a Man," and I'm not sure I'd rule the way the arbitrator does in "Author, Author". Because, fundamentally, I don't think either Data or the EMG have consciousness, and I like how Voyager Season 7 cleverly suggests that we at least consider that we might have been wrong to care about the Doctor all along. Although, ultimately, I think it comes down on the side of giving some advanced holograms some limited rights, which opens a massive can of worms, but an understandable one that I don't think the show needs to explore any further than it did.
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Baron Samedi
Fri, Mar 23, 2018, 9:03am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Riddles

A routine and forgettable episode, though not terrible. Two stars is about right. The moments that worked were fleeting and surrounded by Voyager cliches. There were some nice details though, such as the friendly alien Naroq (although there had to also be typical hardheaded xenophobic aliens to balance him out I suppose) and the simple fact that it was nice to see Tuvok and Neelix's friendship fleshed out for the first time in a while. This episode contributes to "Homestead" next season carrying more emotional weight than it would have otherwise.
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Baron Samedi
Mon, Feb 26, 2018, 2:15pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Ensigns of Command

I watched this episode on a whim because it's one of the few I had never seen before. It was such a delight! "The Ensigns of Command" perfectly captures the spirit of TNG. The story is all about diplomacy, contrasting the crew (sans Data) dealing with a hyper-textualist alien culture and ultimately solving the problem through a third-party arbitration clause hidden in a treaty with Data dealing with a hyper-emotional human culture that fails to respond reasonably to the logic he presents.

I enjoyed the interactions between Data and Ard'rian, though I wish she didn't have to develop vaguely romantic feelings towards Data. She seemed too smart and sharp to believably fall so quickly for a machine. Still, it was cute subplot that added depth to the colony and the story.

Overall, I thought this was a great episode, one that encapsulates TNG's strengths as a show - namely, its focus on problem-solving as carried out by a smart and diligent cast of characters trying to live up to Starfleet's ideals. It was a breath of fresh air after the bleakness, rushed pacing, and overplotting of so much of Star Trek Discovery.
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Baron Samedi
Fri, Feb 16, 2018, 6:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

Just throwing out how I would rate the episodes this season:

The Vulcan Hello - 8/10
Battle of the Binary Stars - 8/10
Context is for Kings - 6/10
The Butcher's Knife - 4/10
Choose Your Pain - 7/10
Lethe - 5/10
Magic to Make the Sanest... - 9/10
Si Vis Pacem - 1/10
Into the Forest - 7/10
Despite Yourself - 7/10
The Wolf Inside - 7/10
Vaulting Ambition - 9/10
What's Past... - 9/10
The War Without - 3/10
Will You Take My Hand? - 2/10

I feel like I enjoyed the season more than most people here. It was better than the first season of all post-TOS shows, although most of those first seasons had a couple better episodes than any of Discovery's. I'm also pessimistic that the writers will be capable of righting the wrongs inherent in their current approach. Jammer's review of the finale here does a pretty good job capturing how I feel about the series at the moment.

The worst thing I can say about Discovery is that it not only doesn't make me think very hard, but it punishes me for doing so. Pretty much every major storyline collapses upon the slightest examination (the L'Rell/Voq/Tyler scheme, the end of the Klingon war, the Federation going along with Mirror Georgiou's plan). This resulted in the finale, though not insultingly terrible (faint praise I know), not working on any significant level.

On the other hand, the acting is really good (I'm baffled by the critics of Michael/Sonequa Martin-Green's performances here) all-around and the show managed to be tons of goofy fun. I didn't even mind the evil caricature Lorca turned out to be - it was a reasonably satisfying payoff and I don't think the show needed to deliver anything more.

If the writers can focus on delivering a smaller amount of plot in a satisfying manner, then Discovery could end up being a great show. My primary worry is that some CBS ratings data analysts have resolutely determined that Discovery will lose a significant portion of its audience if the plot isn't always moving at a breakneck pace, so these changes won't actually happen.
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Baron Samedi
Mon, Jan 22, 2018, 2:04pm (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S1: Vaulting Ambition

I'll chime in regarding ranking the captains:

Favorite to least favorite as characters:
1) Kirk
2) Sisko
3) Picard
4) Lorca
5) Janeway
6) Archer

Best to worst as actors,:
1) Janeway/Picard (tie)
3) Lorca
4) Kirk
5) Archer
6) Sisko
(I don't think any of these actors were "bad" - they were all great at least 90% of the time. That said, ENT S1-S2 Archer was performed a bit blandly and Avery Brooks occasionally over-acted noticeably.)

Most effective to least effective as leaders:
1) Picard
2) Sisko
3) Archer (mostly for S3-S4)
4) Janeway
5) Lorca
6) Kirk

I agree with some of the comments above regarding Janeway's inconsistency as a captain, as you have to make way too many leaps on your own to explain how often she oscillated between strictly following protocol/the prime directive in some episodes and her jettisoning those traits in others. It's tempting to try to draw some kind of an arc around her behavior, but futile imo, as I'm convinced there's hardly anything holding her character together over the course of the series. That said, Kate Mulgrew did a fantastic job with the character and made a big impact with her strong performances in individual episodes ("Tuvix," "The Thaw," "Scorpion," "Dark Frontier," and the series finale come right to mind).

As to "Vaulting Ambitions," it's my favorite episode of Discovery so far. I haven't truly believed anything we've learned about Lorca so far because something has always seemed "off" about him and his explanations for his behavior and his past, so I don't feel like an interesting character has been excised through the revelation that he's from the MU - I was hoping the show would go this route, as it explains a lot about his character so far. On top of that, Saru, Burnham, Stamets, Lorca and Georgiou all had strong character moments throughout. I'm impressed at the number of bases the episode touched effectively in its short running time.
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Baron Samedi
Mon, Jan 1, 2018, 10:25pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Seventh Season Recap

Season 7 of Voyager is described pretty well here, in that feels pretty pedestrian. The writers have firmly settled into a formula for the show, preventing both the occasional catastrophic misfires and the occasional classics. There are quite a few fairly good episodes ("Author Author," "Repentance," "Critical Care," "The Void," each installment of both two-parters), tons of mediocre ones, and only a couple outright flops ("Friendship One" and "Unimatrix Zero Part 2", both overrated here at 2.5 stars).

It's a very distinct 7th Season from the two other Trek series that have one. TNG was running out of ideas, churning out episodes of a huge range of quality. DS9 attempted to do a whole lot with a new character and a ten-part finale, to varying degrees of success. Voyager S7 just felt like more Voyager, competent and rarely challenging.

Looking back, the peak of the show was from "Before and After" through "Tinker Tenor Doctor Spy," roughly Season 3.75-Season 6.2. The end of Season 3 had a huge upward surge in quality, Season 4 shook up the status quo and took the most risks, Season 5 executed stories within that new status quo the most effectively, and Season 6 started with a random string of strong episodes. That made for a thrilling run of television, and almost all the Voyager episodes I revisit are within it.
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Baron Samedi
Mon, Nov 13, 2017, 8:29pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S4: Fourth Season Recap

I just finished Enterprise and have how seen every Trek episode made so far! (Assuming you don't count The Orville or the Animated Series.)

Compared to Jammer, I liked Seasons 1 and 2 of Enterprise a lot less, Season 3 about the same, and Season 4 a lot more. Botched finale aside, Season 4 really worked for me - it had so much world-building, developed a few of the characters (and put the others in plot-driven stories that at least didn't bring out their underdevelopment as characters), and had the delightful "In a Mirror Darkly..." two-parter, which I had an absolute blast with (Mirror Universe Porthos being a Rottweiler gave me a big laugh).

If Enterprise had 7 seasons, I could see the first two being looked at as the bad ones, three as the transition where it got good, and four as the beginning of its peak. Unfortunately, the show's cancellation and the terrible "These Are the Voyages" (seriously, nothing happened to these characters in six years?) prevented that from happening, and we're left with a failed show that only got consistently good right before the ending.

That said, I'm glad I watched it. Compared especially to Star Trek Discovery so far, Enterprise episodes have a lot of breathing room and are more pleasant to watch. It's fun and relaxing to watch the shows take their time presenting a new conflict every week. Too often, these conflicts were resolved with silly firefights, and the first two seasons hugely overplayed the crew's inexperience and drew heavily on cliche, but it was OK overall. The Xindi Arc worked; the Temporal Cold War didn't. I enjoyed all the two and three parters in Season 4, as they all provided a lot of insight to the Trek universe.

Enterprise's biggest weakness is in its characters. Jeffrey Combs was always a blast to watch but among the regular cast, Reed, Hoshi and Phlox were all only mildly interesting and the rest just bored me. At least Archer grew as a result of the Xindi Arc, but he was never hugely compelling and is definitely the weakest of the Trek main protagonists.

Looking at the number of episodes I gave a positive rating (a 7 or higher on the 10-scale I use on IMDb, which correlates with a 3/4 star rating here), I gave 5 episodes a positive rating in Season 1, 9 in Season 2, 15 in Season 3, and 15 in Season 4. So that's a lot of improvement!

My picks for the best episodes:
1. Cogenitor
2. Twilight
3. Damage
4. In a Mirror Darkly Part I
5. The Council
6. In a Mirror Darkly Part II
7. Shockwave Part I
8. Carbon Creek
9. Stratagem
10. Vox Sola

Thanks as always, Jammer, for running this site, and I'm glad you're continuing writing reviews for Discovery!
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Baron Samedi
Sun, Nov 5, 2017, 6:50pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S3: Chosen Realm

The loss of the data here had more of an emotional impact on me than the loss of most of these characters (aside from Porthos) would have had.
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Baron Samedi
Sat, Oct 28, 2017, 5:52pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S2: Cogenitor

Having just rewatched this episode, I continue to be blown away by it. It comes close to justifying the whole first two seasons of Enterprise. For once, it acknowledges the pitfalls of Archer & Co.'s approach to space exploration and meeting other cultures in a way that feels believable and non-contrived, all in the context of a fascinating issue.

The way the Vissians treat the cogenitors seems unequivocally awful and unacceptable; yet, the episode doesn't fall into the pitfall of blind cultural relativism in indicting Trip's decision to enforce his own values onto them while knowing very little about them. Archer's admission that his own bad example had a role in inspiring Trip to act the way he did - setting in motion the events that led to the cogenitor's suicide - is as close as Enterprise gets to acknowledging how the writers had written Archer as excessively foolish and simplistic in his handling of exploration up to this point in the show. And the subplot with Reed and the Vissian female was funny and added some light-hearted texture to the story.

I'd even put it on my all-time Top 10 episodes list which, off the top of my head, would be:
1. In the Pale Moonlight (DS9)
2. Duet (DS9)
3. Scorpion (VOY)
4. The Enterprise Incident (TOS)
5. Mirror, Mirror (TOS)
6. Tapestry (TNG)
7. Cogenitor (ENT)
8. Q Who (TNG)
9. The Thaw (VOY)
10. All Good Things...(TNG)
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Baron Samedi
Mon, Oct 16, 2017, 6:33pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S2: Carbon Creek

This episode has so much heart. Probably my biggest disagreement with Jammer since "Balance of Terror". Strong 3.5 from me.
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Baron Samedi
Thu, Aug 31, 2017, 10:30pm (UTC -5)
Re: ANDR S2: Second Season Recap

@mathtans I just saw this and will give your blog page a read! I hope you found the journey through the whole series to be worthwhile.
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Baron Samedi
Thu, Jul 6, 2017, 7:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Endgame

@chris

That's quite a journey! Congrats!
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Baron Samedi
Sun, Jun 18, 2017, 9:21pm (UTC -5)
Re: ANDR S2: Second Season Recap

@matthans thanks as well for all the feedback! It's nice to hear from someone who knows the show so well.

My impression of the battle in "The Heart of the Journey" is that the Commonwealth was fighting the Nietzcheans, who were being controlled by the Abyss, which is basically what you are saying. The show provided so little insight into what was happening that I had to assume that the Magog World Ship being brought back and then never actually appearing on-screen was the result of script rewrites, perhaps motivated by time constraints and the budgetary issues entailed by producing new digital effects footage of the World Ship.

As to "Coda", I didn't read it until after finishing the series on the off-chance that it would spoil some of the story (it didn't), and It's a nice, poetic glimpse into what the story could have been. Seasons 2.5 onwards does have some great moments (season 3's "The Unconquerable Man", showing the alternate timeline with Rhade persevering in the pilot episode, really made an impression on me), but I didn't realize until I read "Coda" how much I missed Robert Hewitt Wolf's grasp of Andromeda's characters and the potential of the overarching story.
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Baron Samedi
Fri, Jun 9, 2017, 10:06am (UTC -5)
Re: ANDR S2: Second Season Recap

Thanks for the positive feedback @Trajan and @Ashton Withers! Glad at least a couple people read what I wrote. I kept searching for Andromesa Season 4 and 5 reviews and found nothing, and since I'm too lazy to start my own website, maybe my comments here can be helpful for anyone interested in how the show ended up.
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Baron Samedi
Fri, Jun 9, 2017, 10:01am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Silicon Avatar

I've never fully understood the debate about this episode. It always seemed to me like Picard's attitude was completely reasonable and basically can be described by three possibilities:

A) the entity cannot be communicated with/the attempts to communicate fail, in which case the Enterprise should immediately destroy it because of the immense destruction and loss of life it has caused and will continue to cause

B) the entity can be communicated with and the Enterprise learns that it is cognizant of its actions (and the significance of the loss of life it has caused) and/or that it cannot continue to exist without continuing to cause similar destruction, in which case the Enterprise should immediately destroy it

C) the entity can be communicated with and the Enterprise can figure out a way to get it to stop its destructive rampage and provide some morally-neutral way for it to continue to live, in which case it should not be destroyed. This option assumes that the entity was unaware of the harm it was causing (or, if it was aware, saw no other option). In this case, it is not morally culpable for surviving the only way it knows how to survive.

The mother is at fault, because she destroyed the entity before option C) could be ruled out (and at a time when nobody was in immediate danger), thus potentially destroying an entity that was not necessarily morally culpable and did not necessarily need to be destroyed. Maybe it did - but that hadn't determined that yet and nobody was in immediate danger.

Some of the comments here are portraying the episode as naive/preaching Picard defying common sense to allow the entity to continue killing people, but I think the episode handles that issue quite reasonably. To an extent, maybe there's some dialogue contradicting what I'm writing (it's been years since I've seen the episode) and I'm just filling in some blanks on my own, I don't know really.

Or maybe the episode should have been ABOUT whether an entity like this should be allowed to live, rather than placing the story of the grieving mother on that framework, as that foundation seems to be the main issue for a lot of people.

Personally, I found nothing in this episode objectionable. 3.5 stars for me.
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Baron Samedi
Tue, Apr 25, 2017, 11:33am (UTC -5)
Re: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Thanks for explaining. None of that bothers me because I always thought that the “diplomatic ship” thing in a New Hope was just a flimsy last-ditch cover story that nobody thought the Imperials would actually believe - the ship is fleeing from the Imperials and filled with uniformed Rebels who fire at the Stormtroopers, and Vader doesn’t seem to take it seriously when he interrogates Captain Antilles and Leia - but as many times as I’ve seen A New Hope, I haven’t watched it in a while, so I don’t remember all the dialogue from the beginning.
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Baron Samedi
Mon, Apr 24, 2017, 7:37pm (UTC -5)
Re: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

@Caedus or @Connor, could you expand on that a bit? I've seen A New Hope a ton of times and Rogue One only once. I didn't notice anything at the end of Rogue One that was particularly problematic in terms of matching up with the beginning of A New Hope, and I'm genuinely curious as to what about it sticks out to you.

I had assumed that some amount of time (I have no idea how much) passed after the end of Rogue One before the start of A New Hope, during which the Devastator finds the Tantive IV and pursues it, ultimately catching up to it near Tatooine. Maybe the start of A New Hope is right after the end of Rogue One and everyone is close to Tatooine already, or maybe the rebels split up to make following them to Yavin IV more difficult and the Devastator ended up following Tantive IV. I dunno, and I don't really care.

Is the problem with the layout of the ship, continuity errors, character actions that don't make sense, or the series of events we see somehow being implausible or impossible?
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Baron Samedi
Fri, Apr 7, 2017, 10:16am (UTC -5)
Re: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

I'm on the same page. Three stars for me. The characters were not well-developed, but the movie had enough strong concepts and ideas to overcome that. The third act was truly exciting, although it would have been much more so if I had become invested in the characters whose lives were in danger. My favorite part was the Rebel blockade runner ramming one Imperial Star Destroyer into another - it was a perfect image of the struggling, outmatched rebellion trying to use the Empire's own size and strength against it.

I saw the movie in theaters with my family on the same day that Carrie Fisher suffered a heart attack (a few days before she died). My mother, who grew up with Carrie Fisher as an icon, let out a huge cheer and clapped the moment Leia appeared on screen. I didn't mind Fisher's image appearing so briefly, especially since it was "filmed" while the actress was still alive.

Interestingly, the rest of my family was fooled by the CGI Peter Cushing, whereas I found his appearance incredibly fake and distracting. I wish they had just kept Wayne Pygram, who walked by briefly as Tarkin at the end of Revenge of the Sith. He was a superb villain on Farscape (arguably the highlight of the whole series), so it would have been great to have him as the villain here, as he does resemble Peter Cushing fairly well. I'd certainly prefer that than the awkward CGI character we got instead.
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Baron Samedi
Sun, Mar 5, 2017, 10:36pm (UTC -5)
Re: ANDR S2: Second Season Recap

Tagging @Samaritan and @Leah (who I figure are the same person) in case he/she is interested in reading my post.
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