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Brian
Wed, Sep 19, 2018, 8:41pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S3: Destiny

Excellent episode, probably 4 stars from me. I love most of the emissary episodes, but I enjoy that sub genre of sci do.
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Adrian Martin
Mon, Sep 17, 2018, 10:12am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Cause and Effect

@Ari Paul

You won't get any argument from me. Timescape is still in my Top 10 as well. :-)
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Brian_C
Wed, Sep 5, 2018, 9:58pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: First Contact

Yes! That was the biggest flaw this film had (IMO). They beat the borg too easy at the beginning of the film and it just felt like a quickly, sloppily thrown together setup for the rest of the film.

That was a shame. They could have done something more plausible and in line with the high quality of the rest of this film and it wouldn't have felt so cheap and implausible.

It was kind of hard for me to really enjoy the stuff they did to "fix the timeline" because the reason the borg chose to alter the timeline in the first place didn't make a lot of sense.
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Adrian Martin
Wed, Sep 5, 2018, 10:00am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Cause and Effect

When I was 15, I wrote out a list of my favorite Next Generation episodes. The top three were:

1. Cause and Effect
2. Frame of Mind
3. Timescape

Clearly, I loved having my mind warped by Brannon Braga when I was a youngster. Though my tastes have evolved since I've entered adulthood (now I tend to gravitate toward Ronald D. Moore's stories of high drama and political intrigue), this episode is still in my top 3. It's just pure, nutty science fiction, and I love watching the characters gradually put the pieces together each subsequent trip through the loop.

I began watching Next Generation regularly halfway through the third season, at the tender age of seven, but it was this episode that solidified my TNG fandom - from the moment the ship blew up in the teaser. Thank you, Mr. Braga!
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Ian
Fri, Aug 31, 2018, 12:52am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Booby Trap

I agree with everyone here who has commented that Picard's decision to destroy the Promellian Battlecruiser seems improbable for his character. Very un-Picard like. The distress signal was already turned off so the "lure" of the trap was gone. You would think Picard would want a Federation science team to be given a chance to figure out a way to salvage the ship.
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Brian_C
Wed, Aug 29, 2018, 5:55pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Endgame

Well, having just gone and watched the whole series through for the first time, I have to say that I'm glad I wasn't watching when this was in it's initial run. They really betrayed the people who watched this series and waited all those years for a payoff that feels almost cruel.

Makes you really appreciate All Good Things even more. At least TNG went out with a bang. I don't know what this was but it was an insult to Voyager's fans.
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brian
Wed, Aug 29, 2018, 8:29am (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S1: The Conscience of the King

one of my all time favorite trek episodes. Very ambitious and surreal. you can tell the writers are still experimenting with tone and content and i find that very interesting. Not sure what poeple are complaining about the ending for i think they misheard the line.
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brian
Wed, Aug 29, 2018, 8:03am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S3: Past Tense, Part II

A great ep and really new and original for star trek. it almost looked like an episode of The Wire. Very gritty and smart, the hostage situation was extremely tense. I love how in this distoia the cops dont even care they just come in and shoot everyone and peace out winout asking many questions. It predates The Wire but manages to tackle many if the same issues.
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brian
Wed, Aug 29, 2018, 7:58am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S3: Past Tense, Part I

i am watching DS9 for the first time in 2018 and I found this vision of the near future downright disturbing for its metaphoric similarities to our current present. Tech billionaires who live in isolated bubbles, unaware of the growing resentment and dangerousness of the underclasses. An increasingly apathetic government structure. I hope we can eventually end up in the star trek utopia but I am having my doubts.
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Brian_C
Mon, Aug 27, 2018, 10:34pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Barge of the Dead

I've always tended to dislike the Klingon cultural stuff in all Trek. Not sure why it always gets such rave reviews. Granted, it's usually well-written and produced. It's obvious they put real time and effort into it. But they could have made any episode of Voyager be awesome with the same amount of effort.
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Brian_C
Sun, Aug 26, 2018, 5:23pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Someone to Watch Over Me

Even though I really feel that TNG is (by far) the better Trek, watching this episode really made me see how awesome Jeri Ryan's acting skills were compared to Brent Spiner's.

I always liked the Data character (a lot) and Spiner did a great job with him but it never felt quite organic. It always felt a bit like Spiner instead of Data. Ryan completely disappears into the Seven role here. It's just so natural.
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Brian_C
Sat, Aug 25, 2018, 2:19pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Course: Oblivion

My god. How could they have thought this episode was a good idea? I had to watch it but I hope I can purge it from my memory soon.
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Brian S.
Fri, Aug 24, 2018, 6:21pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: Tacking into the Wind

@Rom:
"More generally speaking, how the Dominion endured for two thousand years is difficult to believe based on their Alpha Quadrant behavior. They make some very dumb decisions...For example, had they really had the power to hold on to a large Gamma Quadrant empire for so long, they would have known they had to keep their base happy - i.e. the Cardassians. A real-world Dominion, with so much experience, would have kept the Cardassians on their side emotionally and politically - especially the leadership. "

++++

In the Gamma Quadrant, it seems most of the planets they rule simply through fear and might.

Most of the GQ worlds have either an isolated population, or a small federation of systems. The Cardassian Empire seems like the the largest and most powerful independent group they've "conquered" in some time.

Out in the Gamma Quadrant, they don't need to keep anybody happy. If a conquered world tries to rebel, the Founders simply obliterate that world as a lesson to all the others to stay in line.

I suspect none of the other GQ worlds would still have even the military resources the Cardassians have. The Founders would have disarmed their conquered worlds of most of their military weaponry long ago. Any singular world or small alliance that even drummed up enough resources to fight would have been instantly wiped out.

The Founders don't care about keeping the masses happy because they don't have to care. They live far away on an isolated world. The enforcers of their regime are disposable clones they care nothing for. There's no need to play nice with the subjects because they pose no threat. Anybody rises up, smack them back down with vengeance. That was their game plan and it worked well for centuries.

It was less effective on the Cardassians for two reasons:

1) The Cardassians were very still heavily armed and had nearly the entire Alpha Quadrant working against the Dominion at the same time. When Cardassia finally rebelled, all the AQ superpowers were right on the doorstep. If any other GQ world rebelled, with no other outside support--like the combined might of the Federation-Klingons-Romulans AND the wormhole access cut off--they would've just been easily overwhelmed and dispatched without a second thought. There's no reason to keep any other GQ world populace happy.

2) The Cardassians hadn't been subjected to Dominion rule for more than a few years. The only way the Founders could gain their initial foothold in the Alpha Quadrant was to at least pretend it was more of a military alliance than a pure subjugation. In the GQ, there's no need for alliances or agreements, the Dominion just conquers. Once a generation or two of isolated subjugation passes with no hope in sight, the will to fight back wanes.
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Brian_C
Thu, Aug 23, 2018, 7:10am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Once Upon a Time

FWIW, the writers of Voyager are mean enough to kill a little girl's mother in a shuttle crash so I was a little worried. I figured she'd make it but I was prepared to cry.

This one wasn't terrible. OK. So the shuttle crash thing is horribly overdone in Voyager but it's been done far worse than this.

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Brian_C
Thu, Aug 23, 2018, 5:01am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Extreme Risk

Don't understand why starships don't just have a giant replicator onboard so they can just make more shuttles the same way they do everything else. Replicate them. Not build them by hand.

I suppose that wouldn't make very interesting viewing.

Paris - "Let's make a badass new shuttle"

Janeway - "Computer, create a brand new badass shuttle"

"Poof"

Computer - "Done"
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Brian
Wed, Aug 22, 2018, 5:49am (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S4: Terra Prime

While watching the episode all I could think was that the Terra Prime group was a racist bunch of radical isolationists and its name loosely translated to "Earth First". The name seems to have been borrowed for Trump's "America First" movement...
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Brian
Tue, Aug 21, 2018, 12:03am (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S4: Affliction

I loved the explanation of the Klingon augments as to why the they looked human in Kirk's time. In the DS9 episode "Trials and Tribulations" where Worf avoids the explanation by saying that Klingons don't discuss the issue, its notable that O'Brien and Bashir ask him if its due to "genetic engineering" or maybe a "viral mutation" and the writers of Enterprise actually take both ideas and combine them into the actual explanation...awesome!

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Brian
Sun, Aug 19, 2018, 10:28pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: The Loss

To me the worst part about this episode is the scope/context of it... when the ship’s movement is impaired, suddenly Troi’s Empathic senses are shut off. While Dr. Crusher did say “there may be a connection I don’t know” regarding the Enterprise’s propulsion dilemma and Troi’s loss of ability, considering they didn’t have Troi hit her head or anything, of course you would assume that the two are connected. The way Troy and the crew react is sort of out of scope and out of context to the whole situation. There is a crises currently affecting the ship that may have caused Troi’s loss, so should she be expected to continue duty? No, sense loss is traumatic. She should have relieved herself of duty due to the trauma of her sense loss/until it returned after the situation ended. But the show wanted for its character drama to have Troi presuppose that the loss will be permanent rather than the much more rational “let’s wait until we get out of this crazy anamoly before jumping to conclusions” approach.
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Brian_C
Sun, Aug 19, 2018, 1:27am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Waking Moments

Since when does the warp core ever eject when they try to eject it? I can only think of one time in Voyager (so far) when it actually worked. It almost never works in any ST series.
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Brian_C
Sat, Aug 18, 2018, 10:44am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Mortal Coil

I have to admit. As much as the Neelix character annoyed me at first, Ethan Phillips really did a fantastic job all through the series. It certainly wasn't his fault the character was a little annoying. It was the way the character was written. I doubt anyone could have done a better job with the material than he did.

Sometimes you have to see some bad acting to appreciate the talent it takes to make even an annoying character completely believable.
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Brian_C
Thu, Aug 16, 2018, 6:10pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Scorpion, Part II

I just saw this for the first time. Been a ST fan for many years but am just getting around to making my way through Voyager. So far, I have to say that I've found Voyager really hard to stomach at times. Compared to TNG and even DS9, Voyager feels like a cheap imitation of Trek most of the time.

I mean, honestly, I believe the acting in Voyager is better than DS9. I didn't like Avery Brooks as an actor at all. Kate Mulgrew is much better in actually making her character believable. That's to say I believe she did the best she could with the material they gave her. The writers often failed to give these actors the best material.

These two episodes were very interesting but the writing still just was very shoddy (IMO). The TNG borg episodes just flowed so much better and they wisely didn't stretch credibility too much by examining the specifics of the borg too much.

As menacing as the new species was supposed to be, I just wasn't buying them as meaner than the borg. I also didn't buy Voyager saving the borg. I don't know. It just felt like it was written by a teenage fan instead of professionals.
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Ian
Thu, Aug 16, 2018, 5:06pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Descent, Part I

"a Security Guy in the brig can be standing right there while Crosis seduces Data in a rather alarming exchange of dialogue, but apparently Security Guy won't do anything with such information."

I've always wondered about that. What was that security guy in the brig doing anyway? He never seemed to pay attention to what was going on in the brig.


"Data flees in a shuttle, leading the Enterprise in pursuit.

How the heck did Data manage to get a Borg out of the brig and down to shuttle bay without anyone noticing? You would think a Borg walking around the corridors of the Enterprise would be a hard thing to miss. Maybe Data beamed him directly into the shuttle, who knows? Makes one wonder how effective Worf's security team really is.
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Brian
Tue, Aug 14, 2018, 10:25pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: The Q and the Grey

Wow. I just saw this episode for the first time and I can't believe how awful it was! I mean, Voyager was never as good as TNG and TNG had a couple of not so great Q episodes but even the worst of them was better than this crap!
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Brian
Sun, Aug 12, 2018, 4:13am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: The Swarm

The major flaw I see in this story is the same one I keep seeing in many Voyager episodes.

Janeway knows the doctor's program is having problems but she decides to just drive the ship right into hostile space without asking "What happens if we get into trouble and have a bunch of injuries with a doctor who can't help them?". They do have Kes but is she really a substitute for the doctor? We don't know. It isn't even really addressed.

Seems like it would have made a lot more sense for them to just sit there in relative safety until they found a way to fix the doctor before heading into hostile space.

This happens repeatedly on Voyager. Janeway makes dumb mistakes that could have easily been avoided because they need a plot and the writers apparently thought the viewers were too dumb to notice. How can we respect a captain who doesn't have any regard for danger and nearly gets the ship destroyed in every episode?

They kind of did this in TNG but the writing was usually a lot better and they usually at least asked "What if something goes wrong?". At least Picard was smart enough to weigh the options before doing anything. Janeway doesn't ask "Is this risky?" She just does it
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Brian
Fri, May 11, 2018, 11:37am (UTC -5)
Re: Star Wars: The Last Jedi

I think 3.5 is too generous, looking at the big picture. Peter Gs post from a couple days ago nailed it. TFA was an empty shell. Johnson did the right thing and threw out the garbage, but it was by no means a good film. On story telling, on pacing, on emotional impact, it flopped. ESB was far and away a better film. Comparatively, TLJ feels like amateur fan fiction. Its nice to see people trying to be "generous" but also kind of sad. Have our standards really fallen so far? This is supposed to be STAR WARS! My only hope is that Disney will tire of holding the reigns and eventually pass them to a small film company who will resurrect the SW universe properly.
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