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Bryan
Fri, Sep 21, 2018, 9:29am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S3: The Abandoned

Not that I’m agreeing with Elliot’s argument in whole, but he’s right in the sense that a 20-year-old and a 16-year-old sleeping together is statutory rape in most states and most of Europe. These numbers presented in this episode aren’t coincidences; the writers purposely chose controversial ages to maintain the no one right, “shades of gray” aspect of the show.
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Bryan
Sun, Jul 22, 2018, 8:49am (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S3: Captain's Holiday

@Prince of Space

“Their comments are gassy, overly long, unbelievably critical, and usually full of big words to emphasize the validity of their litany list of complaints. One could easily think they do not watch ST for pleasure, but rather to demonstrate their ability to dissect others’ work. ”

At least they’re commenting on the show instead of digging around the comment section of every episode and commenting only on the comments.
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Bryan
Tue, Jun 26, 2018, 8:01am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: Let He Who Is Without Sin...

“Yes, they honestly think the problem is that the episode ISN'T SEXY ENOUGH!“

They might have a point there. They’re trying to depict Risa as a special pleasure land for sexual desires and yet it hardly comes off any more daring than a day at a public beach. Perhaps if Risa were depicted as advertised, we might be willing to side with the Essentialists’ and Worf’s protests to some degree.

Another issue with it not being sexy enough is, even if they couldn’t make this a good episode storywise, it could have at least been a guilty pleasure to tune in to see our usually buttoned-down Starfleet crew engaged in some sci-fi-laden erotica. But alas, it fails on this level too.
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Bryan
Sat, Jun 23, 2018, 3:40pm (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek: First Contact

In all the fairness, Riker only calls the Vulcans “aliens” when not around Cochrane in his Captain’s log. And even then, it sounds like Riker is describing a historical event from Earth’s perspective, so “alien” essentially works in context.
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Bryan
Thu, May 31, 2018, 3:15pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Relics

@Cody B

Interesting story and I like the idea of Scotty outsmarting everyone (like it should be!). But would you really get rid of the Dyson Sphere? I thought that was the most memorable part of the episode.
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Bryan
Sat, May 19, 2018, 11:41pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S7: Badda-Bing, Badda-Bang

“I am astonished by the immense number of comments concerning Sisko's dialogue with Kasidy; I mean, really?”

It’s really the only deep part of the episode. There’s only so much to say about poor Vic’s holographic misadventures.
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Bryan
Tue, Nov 28, 2017, 3:32am (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S1: Into the Forest I Go

“The Borg wanted to capitalize on what it saw as an advantage of species with the capacity for individuals with independent thought.”

That’s pure fanon. In First Contact, Picard said the Borg Queen had existed and wished for a partner back in his days as Locutus. It’s a retcon because the TV series established that the Borg were just a collective intelligence.
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Bryan
Sat, Jul 16, 2016, 3:38pm (UTC -6)
Re: ENT S3: Hatchery

Like many others, I agree that Archer's compassion seemed very reasonable and even supported by rational moral arguments, at least until it descended into monomania. So, for me, this episode was a missed opportunity for the mutiny to be about the very ISSUES laid out at the forefront rather than it being a foregone conclusion that whatever Archer is saying is the result of mind-altering substances and therefore suspect and must be discounted (in which case the writing must be seen in a cynical light given the strong moral basis and traditional Trekkian precedent for it).

And you don't even have to agree with Archer's morality for it to have been a far more interesting episode for all, if they had simply deleted the part where Archer got sprayed by alien goo (and consequently also the 'my precious' scene just before he got stunned) and just went with it because it STILL would have made fairly decent sense. The only major difference being they would have found nothing wrong when they scanned Archer.
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Bryan
Sun, Jul 3, 2016, 7:27pm (UTC -6)
Re: ENT S2: The Breach

Travis finally puts his ripped body to use, showcasing his incredible strength!
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Bryan
Sun, Jul 3, 2016, 1:40pm (UTC -6)
Re: ENT S2: Judgment

Well, Enterprise doesn't have shields so... the Klingons could have just beamed Archer off the ship anytime they liked, right?
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Bryan
Fri, Jul 1, 2016, 11:46am (UTC -6)
Re: ENT S2: Canamar

I laughed when Archer practically needs to be dragged back to Enterprise as he's about to run after Kuroda at the end. Archer is still so concerned with Kuroda's health even though they've already fought three times and the ship is blowing up all around them.
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Bryan
Sun, Apr 17, 2016, 8:13pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Renaissance Man

Jammer asks: "I've never seen Doc pull a Matrix-like move like that before, but then why did I need to?"

Because it was AWESOME.

That is all.
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Bryan
Sun, Apr 17, 2016, 2:41am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Natural Law

There's this weird cognitive dissonance in this episode that no one seems to have picked up on, where on the one hand, Voyager makes a point of humbling itself before the rules and regulations of host species and even Tom is forced to keep in check his arrogance about being such a great pilot that he is above all standards of scrutiny. But towards the end, when the crew of Voyager must decide how best to 'un-break' the prime directive, it puts them in the awkward position of playing God over all involved parties and arrogantly overruling the intentions of the host species and breaking lots of their rules because Voyager presumes to know what's best for all.

The irony is that retroactively adhering to the letter of the prime directive can be as wrongheaded as breaking the prime directive in the first place, such as when 'undoing the damage' contradicts its essence of non-interference and precautionary principles that form the very rationale for having a prime directive. This means that sometimes it may be better to leave after breaking open pandora's box rather than sticking around to meddle with all the pieces. The Voyager crew doesn't seem to get this though, and readily uses its directives (the omega directive included) to rationalize their superior position and enforce their all-knowing judgements.

When the crew reveals their hypocrisy, we see right through Voyager's policy of deference to alien customs for its patronizing undertones, particularly when Tom breaks away from his punitive flight test to carry out his covert mission to forcibly transport the Ledosians around and his instructor's "Oh, you're so failing now!" is played for laughs. The Ledosians and their customs are made to seem comically insignificant when contrasted to Voyager's loftier principles and more pressing concerns, so the matter of the host's sovereignty being violated is swept under the rug and doesn't evoke any scrutiny.

So now, whenever Janeway reminds her crew that they must defer to local alien customs, we know why she rarely says it with a straight face, but rather with a slight smirk of condescension.
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Bryan
Sat, Apr 16, 2016, 1:41pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Friendship One

Ughn, yet another frustrating and cynical episode that is hard to sit through, and ultimately resonates as anti-Trekkian by the end.

It was such a pleasant surprise to see Carey again after all these years, but then the episode took a very suspenseful turn for me when they had him going on an away-mission given that an extra's chances for surviving away missions are about 30%... "oh, no.. please say it ain't so!" There was a brief surge of hope where it looked like Carey would be saved right before he is suddenly executed for no good reason... leading me to suspect that the writers must be masochists. The Doc doesn't even lift a finger to try to save him. The second he's beamed aboard, he's immediately pronounced dead even though he was alive the second before that...and the Doc just goes back to whatever it was he's doing.

Like Jammer, I didn't buy the aliens whining about the humans giving them technology that allowed them to develop their own tech in turn, which later malfunctioned so therefore "wahh wahh, poor us, this is all your fault.. we kill you now!"

"The urge to explore can't justify the loss of life..." Excuse me? So we have a take-home message of "curiosity killed the cat" in a Star Trek episode??

I was amazed that Paris activated that object that looked suspiciously like a thermal detonator, which luckily happened to be a toy, without any forethought. I'm not surprised that the aliens freaked out when Paris gave it to a child (even though they'd be more likely to recognize it for what it was).

And here, we finally learn the truth behind the mysterious disappearance of the Borg baby -- reincarnation.
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Bryan
Fri, Apr 15, 2016, 11:58pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Author, Author

For some reason I can't help but think how much funnier Tom's impression of the Doctor would have been if he had given him a little Hitler mustache too, but of course that would never fly on Voyager.

I noticed that B'Elanna father spoke as if B'Elanna's mother had died at some point ("your mother would have liked that...") which seems to lend some more credence to events of Barge of the Dead, or at least would make those events more significant to B'Elanna.

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Bryan
Fri, Apr 15, 2016, 12:36am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Workforce

This week's highlight: Kim unwittingly guzzles alien man-nectar, much to the amusement of all.
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Bryan
Thu, Apr 14, 2016, 12:44pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: The Void

Somewhere in here, there's a parable about the zero-sum mentality of the everyone-for-themselves laissez faire capitalist extreme versus the non-zero-sum mentality of more communitarian (not necessarily Communist) approaches... but more importantly, you also have realistic ship turbulence -- dishes falling onto the floor and breaking, potatoes being flung about the room like they're in a shake-and-bake -- which you so rarely see in Star Trek. Instead, sickbay and crew quarters are always perfectly neat and tidy with every test tube precisely positioned and undisturbed after the ship shakes hard enough to send people falling out of their seats on the bridge, which always had me scratching my head.
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Bryan
Wed, Apr 13, 2016, 11:02pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Prophecy

...speaking of cutesy ideas that don't go anywhere...

Stray observations:

1) As Paris rightly asks, "What were the chances that they'd run into the one ship with a Klingon on board?"

2) Those must be some pretty gullible Klingons to blow up their own ship over a prophecy broad enough to include almost anyone.

3) It's now possible to beam over 200+ people in 10 seconds? Good thing the Klingons anticipated Voyager's highly advanced transporter technology or else most of them would have gone down with the ship. Apparently Voyager even had time to spare so they graciously beamed over all those bat-leths too!

4) "Have you ever made a plea for the dead?" Um... wasn't that the whole conceit behind Barge of the Dead? Whether it was 'real' or not, I'd like to think that had a pretty big impact on B'Elanna, enough for it to be worthy of mention.

5) "The Nehret always comes without warning..." Yeah, no kidding. Like during battle at a pivotal moment, or when you're about to cancel a an ill-advised self-destruct sequence... nobody expects the Nehret. It is most inconvenient, mhm, yess.

6) I hope Neelix's romp with that skanky disease-ridden Klingon was approved by Janeway and the Doctor, but considering his impulsive behavior this episode, I doubt it was.

7) Kohlar: "The Kuva'Mach has healed all of us. She truly is our savior."
T'Greth: "... She?!" *rages and rebels all over again*
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Bryan
Wed, Apr 13, 2016, 6:17pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Repentance

The issues raised by this episode are gradually becoming more pertinent to real life and less exclusively in the realm of drama or science fiction as more and more cases of criminal behavior are discovered to be directly attributable to certain kinds of brain abnormalities and defects that were previously hidden or unknown. These insights are relevant to even the most heinous cases perpetrated by those we are most likely to perceive as unredeemable monsters, such as pedophiles. It's only a matter of time before treatment options catch up with our understanding and we'll have a lot more 'Iko's to contend with.
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Bryan
Tue, Apr 12, 2016, 12:34am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Shattered

An episode worthy of as many groans as Janeway rolls her eyes in the Chaotica scene. With season 7 striking out every other episode it's a sign that Voyager is running on fumes and the approaching finish line isn't an unwelcome sight. It's hard to imagine suffering through yet another season of rehashes, cutesy ideas that don't go anywhere, and the writers' attempts to revive dead-and-buried concepts that they'd given up on long ago when they might've at least held some relevance.
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Bryan
Mon, Apr 11, 2016, 2:28pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Nightingale

I liked how Icheb, being a typical teenager, is caught snacking on nachos at his workstation but plays it cool by rationalizing 'snacking' as "a more efficient use of my time", and 'nachos' as "nutritional supplements replicated to meet my metabolic requirements."
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Bryan
Sat, Apr 9, 2016, 11:33pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Inside Man

Lots of goofy and unintentionally funny stuff about this episode:

- After fake-Barclay explains his plan to send the ship through the geodesic fold, I nearly burst out laughing when Janeway said "We still haven't found a way to compensate for GEODESIC RADIATION !!" Because only on Voyager does everything down the very principles of geometry emit hazardous radiation. Too much gravity? Better watch out for gravimetric radiation. Too much light? Best raise shields to protect against the inevitable photonic radiation. Fish on the menu again? Don't worry, we'll contain the ichthyogenic raditation with a level 10 force-field!

- So... after Barclay is being all creepy and stalkery and super-paranoid of everyone after obsessing for months over the problem of why he can't transmit a hologram to the opposite end of the galaxy....Deanna comes to the conclusion that the one person he's NOT being openly paranoid about MUST HAVE SOMETHING TO DO WITH THIS and this is considered probable cause to bring her in for questioning?

- I like how readily the smart people at Starfleet HQ are able to piece together the Ferengi's super-elaborate plans involving twin stars and geodesic folds and borg nanoprobes like it's elementary my dear Watson, but then when it comes to speculating why Voyager would fly through such a phenomenon that would surely kill all life aboard, they are forced to conclude that someone forcing the entire crew of Voyager to do so against their wills is the only logical possibility! Well, that's only because no one let Starfleet in on a key insight that only we viewers at home are privy to: that the crew of Voyager are LETHALLY GULLIBLE MORONS for the entirety of this episode!

- I like the sad, deflated music cue that plays when ever the Ferengi's plans are foiled -- it's like the symphonic equivalent of a "wah-wah" trombone. I wish we heard something like this every time Harry Kim is played like chump, too. Speaking of which, this episode ends such an epic Kim chumpage moment that it nearly threatens to implode into actual pathos, which for me at least, makes it all the more hilarious.
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Bryan
Wed, Apr 6, 2016, 8:10pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Unimatrix Zero, Part II

Agreed that there's a lot of goofy things going on in this episode and after a lengthy de-fanging campaign of the Borg the writers still manage to find a few more fangs to pull, but somehow it ends up being entertaining and greater than the sum of its parts.

And the Borg Queen always has an ominous green light on her at all times, even within the natural outdoor lighting of Unimatrix Zero because of her loyal retainers who dutifully follow her around with portable lighting stands, yet furtively conceal themselves behind bulkheads and bushes so that they are barely noticed.
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Bryan
Wed, Apr 6, 2016, 1:48am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S6: Fury

Despite all there is to lament and criticize about this episode, it was refreshing to revisit all those season one-isms, even the gratutious ones like Ensign Carey (it was said that Carey's appearance here contributes to the myth that he died at some point later on, but the same could be said of Ensign Wildman who also makes an appearance in this episode's past yet it would make much more sense for her to appear instead in the present for once where she actually has a daughter she is supposed to be taking care of!!)

I also think it's easier to view this episode more sympathetically now than when it was released because it's now possible to read in the chilling parallels to Jennifer Lien's tragic fall from grace, when before you could only scratch your head and wonder, "what the hell is this character's motivation for becoming a crazy bitch all of the sudden?" and then decry character assassination on the part of the writers.

Whereas Kes' excuse that her downfall was perpetrated by Voyager taking her from her home where life was simple and filled her head with overly idealistic hopes and dreams that were later crushed after she had to leave, would have rung hollow to viewers 16 years ago, it now resonates with ironic pertinence when you consider that Voyager did indeed take an impressionable young actress from humble beginnings and then instilled high hopes, seeming to assure a place among the stars before summarily casting her out. She never quite caught herself with no one to break her fall and eventually her fragility became known to all even though no one saw it coming.

Knowing what we do now, that confrontation between Kes and Janeway is especially touching, even a bit heartbreaking.
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Bryan
Tue, Apr 5, 2016, 3:20pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S6: Muse

Unlike Darmok, these primitive aliens apparently speak and read fluent English. This isn't a unique contrivance for Voyager, or Star Trek altogether, but it works best when you barely notice. This time it was really noticeable for some reason.
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