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Iceman
Sat, Dec 15, 2018, 7:22pm (UTC -6)
Re: TOS S1: Balance of Terror

@grumpy_otter-

You gave up the episode before "Improbable Cause"? Ouch.
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Iceman
Sat, Dec 15, 2018, 3:05pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S3: Heart of Stone

@Jack-

Was that their only motivation? I remember the female Founder saying that getting Odo back was more important to the war, but their motivations for the war were their paranoia and need to 'impose order' on the rest of the galaxy.
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Iceman
Fri, Dec 14, 2018, 3:28pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S3: Past Tense, Part II

@OmicronTehtaDeltaPhi-

I concur.


@Springy-


Yes this episode was preachy-no denying it. However, I'm more than fine with it. Some situations just require it.
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Iceman
Fri, Dec 14, 2018, 3:24pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S3: Past Tense, Part I

@Springy-

You're not wrong about the time travel logic. This is one of those episodes where you have to suspend your disbelief, big time. It makes no sense, even by Star Trek standards.
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Iceman
Thu, Dec 13, 2018, 5:35pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: Crossover

@Springy-

I'm a bit late, but this was an interesting discussion. I'm a DS9 person all the way. It's easily my favorite Trek series and one of my all time favorites. That being said, I don't see *that* big of a gap in objective quality between DS9 and TNG (which is also one of my all time favorites). They just have different ways of telling their stories. TNG is very cerebral and intelligent, and it possibly has more all time classics than DS9 (though not by much). DS9 was undoubtedly better at character work (though TNG had some great stuff with Picard, Data and Worf), which I personally gravitate towards more. I will also say that the first two seasons of DS9 are definitely its weakest. You may feel differently by the end of the run. I must disagree with you on Voyager, however (We probably agree on Enterprise though-it was mostly awful). Though I wish it had committed itself to delivering on the potential that its premise suggested like DS9 did, I can accept that it didn't need to in order to achieve greatness. That said, I just don't think it had the characters or consistency necessary. Its first season was pretty good in my opinion, but the second and third were mostly disasters. Its fourth and fifth were its best, but even then, those would still only count as mid-tier TNG seasons. Its sixth and seventh just ran out of steam. If you want to read more about this, I recommend sfdebris's reviews or Darren Mooney's on them0vieblog. They explain why I and many others feel Voyager was a disappointment in a way far beyond nitpicking (though I must say, I think Jammer explained himself very well). I must admit though, I do get a little irritated when people say how overrated DS9 is. Yes, on this one particular site, the reviewer thought DS9 was better than Voyager. However, he's clearly not the majority. Most people would say TOS, TNG, or VOY before they'd say DS9. Even on this website, there are many, many commenters (Yanks, Elliott, William B, Patrick, Trent) who feel that DS9 is on par or worse than the other Trek series, and overrated by Jammer (This isn't a slight on you guys btw-even though I disagree, I enjoy reading your comments, and you seem like nice people).

@William B-Don't be sad. Though I believe what Rene Echevarria said about TNG w/r/t DS9 was accurate, it should just make you all the more impressed that TNG so often managed to thrive under those conditions.
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Iceman
Thu, Dec 13, 2018, 4:14pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S3: Fascination

@Peter G-

The whole subplot is just a depressing drag that tells us nothing new, except further impress on us that the Miles/Keiko relationship should probably end very soon. It doesn't help that the acting is very stilted.
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Iceman
Wed, Dec 12, 2018, 10:25pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: Accession

@Garth of Izar-

I like your taste in Star Trek :-).
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Iceman
Wed, Dec 12, 2018, 9:04pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S7: The Siege of AR-558

@11001001-

"I think this episode was really well executed. Yes we've seen this type of war story before in other fiction, but here it was brought to the Trek universe in an impactful way."

Yeah, exactly. There's always novelty in transporting another genre to Star Trek, like the noir in "Necessary Evil". I don't think this is as good as that, but it's an extremely impactful episode despite being blunt. It's better than "...Nor the Battle to the Strong", which I also think is effective, but rather more clunky and forced. You could feel the writers straining to fit the war movie genre into Trek. Here, it seems more natural, even if it's cliché.


"I'm not going to get into the debate over to what extent this undermines Trekkian philosophy/idealism. Although, my view is more along the lines of Yanks and others like him who express that Starfleet has always reacted in a similar way: being willing to do battle to safeguard Federation lives. DS9 just gets more in our face about it, because there is a protracted war. I do think Quark's ideas about a negotiated settlement are too simplistic. This would have been the Federation's first choice too, but I think Yanks was right that the Dominion was unyielding. There was no reasoning with the Founders anymore that there was any chance of reasoning with the Borg. They both want to impose their form of order on the Galaxy."

I think the point that DS9 is making isn't that humans are awful or anything like that, it just doesn't take the evolved form of human behavior as a given. The utopia depicted in TOS and TNG is still an achievable goal worth striving for, but doesn't come without its challenges. That's why I have no problem with Quark's speech here, or O'Brien's speech in "Hard Time". In fact, I'm actively in favor of them and think they're both an example of DS9 proving its critics wrong.
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Iceman
Wed, Dec 12, 2018, 4:48pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S2: Prototype

@Elliott?

"I was never bored, I was never angry, but I was never riveted. Do better, Voyager. "

So you DO understand my feelings toward the show! This is how I felt throughout its entire run. Voyager had all the pieces to be something truly special: top-of-the-line production values, well-respected writers, solid actors, and an intriguing premise. It could have been remarkable if only it reached for greatness more than twice a season.
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Iceman
Wed, Dec 12, 2018, 10:36am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: Necessary Evil

@wolfstar-

Blasphemy!

Although your points are fair enough, I think the story is so strong it renders the contrivances basically obsolete.
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Iceman
Wed, Dec 12, 2018, 10:34am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S3: Meridian

"--Is it prejudging to hate the ep already, if I saw it before about 25 years ago, and remember almost nothing except the extremely sour taste in my mouth?"

No, no it isn't. Especially when the episode in question is a flaming pile of garbage.
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Iceman
Wed, Dec 12, 2018, 12:30am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: Paradise Lost

"You can maybe argue that the Starfleet officers depicted in TNG and TOS were a bit arrogant towards some alien species, but not as a rule towards their fellow humans. There is something fundamentally different about the way that cadet behaved than any of the young officers we've seen previously like Locarno or Harry Kim."

Right. But my point was that since the Academy is so hyped up, it's not a stretch to think that those who make it through the rigorous academic selection will get a bit of an inflated ego. Especially with something like 'Red Squad'. It sounds like the Phoenix Club mentioned in "The Social Network". Taking a bunch of people who already may have too high opinions of themselves and elevate them even above their peers. But even leaving Red Squad out of it, I doubt it would be hard to foster elitism among cadets.
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Iceman
Tue, Dec 11, 2018, 10:58pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: Paradise Lost

@Elliott

"I find myself very disturbed by this two-parter and what it means moving forward. "

Did you like that it made you think or did you think that the episode is another attack by DS9 on Roddenberry's vision?


" Leighton and those like him are creating an insidious anti-Federation culture among the future members of Starfleet, dripping with elitism, aggressiveness and a thirst for conflict."

Regarding the elitism thing, I think it's all but inevitable with an uber-prestigious school like Starfleet Academy. They made it sound like it was harder to get into than Harvard or MIT. Even boy wonder Wesley Crusher didn't get in. So those that do get in will probably develop a serious superiority complex. This is definitely seen at prestigious schools and universities in the U.S. (not sure about other parts of the world).
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Iceman
Tue, Dec 11, 2018, 10:53pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: Homefront

@Elliott-

"What I'm saying is that the kind of events which in the real world would trigger terrorism *of the type* that could cause such massive social upheaval, in the vein of 9/11, only occur as a result of the post-imperialist mess that the Cold War wrought upon the world."

Gotcha. Thanks for clarifying. I still don't agree that they should have focused on it, and I think the changelings do qualify as an existential threat that people would be scared enough to hand over civil liberties for, but I understand your perspective better now.


"But if the Changelings *had* caused the power outage and *had* upped their attacks, seeing Earth submit to martial law so easily would reveal that the Federation's principles don't amount to much in the face of fear."

This is just basic human nature though. Fear can drain all logic and rational thinking from a society. I have no problem with DS9 portraying human nature like this. I guess that's where we differ.
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Iceman
Tue, Dec 11, 2018, 10:46pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: Homefront

@Eliiott

Seems like we can all agree on that one.
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Iceman
Tue, Dec 11, 2018, 8:31pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: Homefront

Also, Elliott, DS9 is NOT the most right wing Trek. Not by a long shot. It's the only Trek to embrace multiculturalism. It relentlessly stresses that war is a tragedy for all involved. It may be skeptical that a large scale institution like the Federation could keep its hands clean, but individuals like Julian Bashir most certainly can. That's not incompatible with leftism, unless you're an authoritarian leftist. The most right wing Star Trek show would be Voyager, a show dedicated to moving backwards, and terrified of changing the status quo. The Original Series wasn't that left-wing either. It was more influenced by Kennedy-era liberalism. Early TNG was quite left-wing on the surface, but it was widely derided because the Federation's morally superior world was built on technology we don't have yet. It didn't make a coherent leftist argument for how our society could change for the better today-it was basically just pointing and laughing without much of a purpose.
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Iceman
Tue, Dec 11, 2018, 8:17pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: Homefront

@Elliott-

"The West has a lot of culpability in creating the socioeconomic conditions that breed terrorism against itself and I think the writers had a responsibility to contend with that in their writing. "

This is a highly contentious point that I'm not going to comment on. Just the wrong place for it. But I will say that there are plenty of terrorists that have nothing to do with Western foreign policy. So I don't think they need to portray how the Federation is responsible for the Dominion's terrorist attack, necessarily. But for the record, they do portray how the Federation doesn't really respect the Dominion's request to stay out of the Gamma Quadrant. So you could say it's a response to the expansionism of the Federation. But I'm not going to say that, because the truth is the Founders' terrorist attack was fueled by their paranoid fascism and need (or desire I suppose) to impose 'order' on the galaxy. Plus they take the old Roman adage of 'offense is the best defense' to a nightmarish extreme. And unlike the Romulans and Cardassians, who probably wouldn't hesitate to destabilize the Federation, they actually have the ability. So I don't think they need to ask 'why is this happening?', and I don't think it cheats. I think it's possible to build stories about the effects, not the causes. Focusing on the motivations behind terrorism might make for an interesting DS9 episode ("For the Cause", hello there!), but it's not the one the writers were aiming for with this episode imo.
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Iceman
Tue, Dec 11, 2018, 8:03pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: Homefront

@Chrome-I was referring to "The Drumhead". It's not the same thing exactly, but it's pretty similar in terms of subject matter, I think.

@Omicron-

Agreed. Another example is the way Jimmy dies in "Far Beyond the Stars".
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Iceman
Tue, Dec 11, 2018, 7:35pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: In Purgatory's Shadow

@Jasper-

You already finished the series, but I think I can fill this plot hole, at least a little. DS9 is located deep in Bajoran space. Bajor isn't part of the Federation yet, so I don't think they can just build a space dock deep in another power's territory. That being said, it is a somewhat big plot hole. DS9 is essential to the war effort. It should be more well-protected.
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Iceman
Tue, Dec 11, 2018, 6:54pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: Necessary Evil

@William B-

Do you not love tree-climbing???

@Springy-Cool! Please post more of your thoughts. Always interesting to here from a newcomer. Just keep soldiering on. I am still largely indifferent to the first two seasons of DS9, but now I love it to bits. I'll address some of your other points. 1)-I prefer "Necessary Evil" to "Duet" as well. It's subtler storytelling, which I definitely prefer. "Duet" is still a masterpiece and one of the best episodes in the entire franchise though. 2)-No, I wouldn't say the way they get Odo and Kira together is entirely believable, but once they get together, the relationship is handled very well, I'd say.
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Iceman
Tue, Dec 11, 2018, 6:46pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: Homefront

Oh, and Elliott, I'm also going to echo Chrome's point about terrorism. Your critique is that the episode doesn't properly explore the motivations behind terrorism. My response is that this episode simply isn't interested in that. The writers consciously chose to write a story about how fear drives people to give up liberty in the name of security. The terrorist act the changeling commits is the catalyst for the exploration of those themes, which I thought this episode did an exemplary job exploring. You can't fault the episode (well, you can and did, but you shouldn't have) criticized something for not being what you want it to-you have to judge it on its own merits, which I don't think that you did here. This is why so many of your critiques of DS9 fall flat to me, despite your eloquence and high word count.
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Iceman
Tue, Dec 11, 2018, 6:29pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: Homefront

@Chrome-

Yeah you're not wrong about that. TNG did it 5 years before this episode! Bouts of hysteria (sadly) happen very often throughout history. The DS9 writers didn't have to possess a crystal ball to predict that paranoia would shake the U.S. once again relatively soon. Still, the timing still makes DS9 a lot more interesting. And I think we can say that by addressing broader topics such as this one, DS9 ensured that it appeared somewhat timeless as opposed to the other Treks, which very clearly appear to me as shows of their time. I think that's one of the things that makes DS9 great. It's obsessed with 90s, X-Files-esque paranoia in "Whispers", mid-twentieth century pop culture in "Little Green Men", "Far Beyond the Stars", and "His Way", and broader issues that would soon become extremely relevant once again in this episode and "The Way of the Warrior".
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Iceman
Sun, Dec 9, 2018, 9:48pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: Necessary Evil

@Springy-

Is this your first time watching the series? If so, enjoy.
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Iceman
Thu, Dec 6, 2018, 8:31am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: Our Man Bashir

@Elliott-
" I enjoyed S3 a bit more than S2, but S2 ranked much higher because there were fewer really bad episodes and more mediocre ones. "

I always felt that Season 3 was comfortably ahead of Season 2. Uneven, yes, but the character interactions are so much more enjoyable to watch. I'm still overall bored by the first two seasons despite some really good episodes. Season 3 is when I started to really like the show on a week-by-week basis, not just every once in awhile.

Solid review of "Our Man Bashir". I like it a bit more than you. I guess you could say I'm a casual fan of James Bond, so just recreating it wouldn't really do it for me. I love this episode because of how it interrogates typical spy tropes through a Star Trek lens. The Garak stuff really added to it for me. Also, Avery Brooks is *perfect* as Dr. Noah. Now I'm really sad he never actually played a Bond villain. As a 45-minute slice of light, comedic Star Trek, I also felt that the pacing was dead on. Not quite as good as "The House of Quark", but superior to most Trek comedies imo. It didn't fizzle like "Little Green Men".

Also, "Bride of Chaotica!" is splendid entertainment? That's going a bit far in my opinion. It's an enjoyable mess.
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Iceman
Mon, Nov 19, 2018, 8:13pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: The Sword of Kahless

@Elliott-

I'm not going to defend this one much at all. I gave it a half-star extra for the potential. I agree that it fundamentally misses the mark on what a quest episode should be about-a mystical object that represents something tangible, like the One Ring or Excalibur. From a surface-analysis level, there are also serious pacing issues here. Instead of keeping a sense of pulpy momentum all the way through like the Indiana Jones movies (1 and 3, at least) or the first Pirates of the Carribean film, it devolves into Worf and Kor arguing over nothing (which, as you pointed out, doesn't feel true to their characters) in the same terrible cave set Trek's been using since "The Enemy" (or possibly further back, I can't remember). The writing staff had a good idea, but this needed a few more re-writes. So it goes with a 26 episode production season I suppose.
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