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Ildaf
Tue, Feb 14, 2017, 11:53pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S2: Projections

Doc having trouble when visiting holodeck.
Well.. who's better than Barclay for holodeck problem, our beloved holo-dict character, and the result is.... Awesome!

Barclay even mentioned to Doc he has HTDS (Holo Transference Dementia Syndrome), coming from Barclay.. this is really something, and to prove his point.. he slap Doc in the face!. Picardo reaction is priceless!.

The two man has great chemistry, and watching them changing line with their antique-ness is a real pleasure!

The malfunctioning so conveniently provide everything the program need to trick the Doctor into believe he is a real person (Barclay his assistant, Kes as wife, life-sign, and complete bio Zimmerman of holo-Voyager). All of this can be explained by read and using the memory data on Doc to create the delusion.
But one thing that bother me and the big game changer for all of this is the ability to feel pain, where that come from? His program doesn't need and have this, so that's kinda come from nowhere.

The delusion of Doc also suggest his desire to become a 'real person', not only just a programming. That's expected actually, with The Doc pretty much is a Data version of Voyager.
The ending is interesting, show us that Doc accept his nature that he is a 'mere program', but with an obvious foreshadowing he is (or will become) more than that.

Great episodes, but I don't think it has a big impact, depth, outstanding, or become a classic one to warrant 4 stars.

3 (***) stars
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Ildaf
Tue, Feb 14, 2017, 6:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Learning Curve

@Tara

I think they are. I noticed the writer made several time this kind of self-satire, very likely it's intentional. Maybe to nudge the higher up? Braga? Who knows what really behind the screen.

In 'Worst Case Scenario' :
"Who says deus ex Machina is an outdated literaly device?" -- Janeway
The very next episodes Janeway got her wishes with Seven join the crew.
Literally a walking Deus Ex Machina ;)

In 'Tinker Tenor Doctor Spy' :
"Warp core breach a lot sooner than you're think" -- Computer
We know the Voyager habbit cliche of saving in the nick of second

In 'Muse' they're actually made self-parody of Voyager, and it's quite fun but also serious.

===

Yeah, I understand.
I have a weak spot for something historical related. I love 'Distant Origin' for that reason, and really angry with '37' because they ruined and wasted what is a great premise and potential to be classic episode.

===

Thank you. I'm Indonesian :)
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Ildaf
Tue, Feb 14, 2017, 5:35pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S2: Initiations

Chakotay needs to be alone in shuttle, long way from the mother-ship just for his ritual? yea right, sounds like good idea eh..

'Kulbit maneuvers' in space battle, I'm half expecting 'Pugachev's Cobra' will be performed next. But why bother doing inside loop maneuvers on 1vs1 situation when phaser in 24th century can fire in any direction?

Aah.. The kid want to die after being saved by Chakotay, because he considered die in a battle is honorable.. sounds familiar? Damn!! Why can't we have a cunning opponent species, who do what it takes to achieves his goal.
Why can't this kid to be intelligent by observing his enemies, curious about this new culture, absorb everything he can learn from this new species and it's technology. Then take advantadge of it at the right time by reclaim the shuttle (kill Chakotay along with it also help us), because 'he consider it's honorable to help his people and defend his space'.

Instead, this kid is continually begging to let me die.. let me die.. let me die..
Just kill yourself if it's really that matter will ya. But no, he is all bark and effectively letting Chakotay to 'brainwash' him.

The Kazon having some similar trait to Klingon, but more than that, they're now officially branded to be just another hard-headed-alien eh. Instead using the Kid for inteligence data, they just want to kill him to 'teach lessons' for other kids, also hell-bent to after and kill Chakotay with the kid when both escaped.

Voyager can scan and pick up a tiny rust in the middle of nowhere. But can't immediately determine a Kazon shuttle debris by scan.. and for that matter, a federation own shuttle. They need to beam it in to determine that?
Doc need to scrapping debris in sickbay to find if there's a human remnants, what happen to bio-scan?
Oh boy, seems to me they just don't have enough scene time and have to fit it with pointless investagating scene (or to give other main cast something to do).

Neelix prove his usefulness with knowledge of the region and Kazon. He push the Kazon to reason and avoid a possible battle, good to see him actually utilized on the show.
So the Kazon willing to negotiate and can be reason with, that's good to see.

But wait.. wasn't all this trouble begin because they are a hard-headed-alien that just go for kill.. kill... glory in battle, and protect their region. Suddenly they are now a reasonable people?
If they are reasonable, why attack Chakotay shuttle in the first place?
They are well aware that the mother-ship is nearby and will looking for them regardless what the result of Chakotay if they attack the shuttle. The end result will be the same, a direct confrontation which they now seek to avoid. So why attack the shuttle in the first place?
I'm confused, it seems they have a button that turn them between hard-headed-alien and reasonable-races at a moment's notice.

Regardless. I'm glad with the Kazon development. Razik, the Kazon-sect leader offer an alliances, which is a reasonable thing to do rather than opposing species with a clear superior technology. This could make things more interesting and complex development. I hope that hard-headed-alien button is now discarded.

The conclusion is very impressive, manage to avoid the cliche of Chakotay falsify death for Kar benefit.
Instead Kar double back and kill Razik, it's a reasonable for them, and in the process kill many birds on one shot with this single powerful act. Kar accepted back to the Kazon, the alliances door that offered by Razik back to square one with his death, and Federation maintan their status quo as unwelcomed party for Kazon. It is a very well done!

Pacing could use a little help here, but Eisenberg deliver a respectable performance to offset it.
Overall, its a quite enjoyable episodes with some minor inconsistensies, and a bit silly opening.

2.5 star
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Ildaf
Tue, Feb 14, 2017, 6:21am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S2: The 37's

A piece of Alpha Quadrant for the opening!

Everyone already said it, picking up rust and truck in space is ridiculous (why the alien left it floating in space?), found it in working condition is even more so.
But I have to admit, I have a soft spot for piece of history. So watching an old truck floating in space, fire it up, then later found Earhart is interesting and amusing for me, I like it.
The scene of Janeway-Torres ducking, and Tuvok draw phaser when the exhaust pipe 'fire up' was hilarious!

I think this is a very enticing premise, and if they can put it right, it has potential to be one of the classic. Too bad it is not, they wasted it!

The crew amused with a 20th century equipment, which is understandable and provide amusement for us too. But c'mon, we're (suppose) not that ancient, maybe an antique would be more accurate.
To keep refer it as ancient, almost oblivious, show little-to-no appreciation of 20th century achievement and their own history, made them look like an ignorant people. I sure hope our offspring in advanced civilization wouldn't be so ignorance to their ancestor.
I imagine Geordi and Barclay would be jumping all over the car, Picard would be awestruck, and Kirk find it exiting.

So they land, nice special effect. But here's start that the show really going downhill, wasted the interesting premise, and using PIS (Plot Induced Stupidity) [TM] to advance the stories :

* Fine, they don't know there's city and civilization down there while orbiting the planet because whatever-interference, but surely they should immediately notice that after they land the ship. No more interference from atmosphere, the tricorder work just fine, no reason they can't notice that.
* 400 years old plane look pristine, alright i'll forgive and overlook that just as with the truck.
* Wow, Janeway found A. Earhart! Cool. Do we really need hear her s.p.e.l.l. the letter?
* So, Earhart and couple hundreds of Earthling was abducted from Earth to Delta Quadrant 70.000 ly away for.. what? Slave?. Are the Delta Quadrant so rare on species for that? Kazon, Talax, Ocampa, Vidiians, Uhnori, Sikarians, Haakonian, Mokra, Hirogen, and dozens other forehead-alien-of-the-week [TM] that Voyager found swarming the DQ beg to differ. Why a highly advanced civilization even need a measly human for that matter?
* Apparently the voyager crew was too stupid looking for concealed weapon, and the tricorder (naturally) couldn't detect that too.
* Gosh.. It was already annoying enough to have hard-headed-alien every couple week. Now the crew revive a human, and they're having syndrome of hard-headed-alien too. Groooaaan!
* Is a human on 20th century (particularly pictured by Fred) is viewed to be really that stupid? Can't listen to reason? Try to overthrow what an obviously advanced people with superior technology by brute froce in frontal confrontation?
* Ah no.. Turn out Fred is not that stupid. Because Voyager crew is even more stupid. They don't have a backup plan if something goes awry, they don't prepare a way to protect themself, they're being held hostage and helpless by 400 years (ancient, ironic isn't) old human with inferior technology.

At this point i'm ready to skip the rest of this episodes. But i still hope there's some redeeming development to come and satisfying closure. But noooo... the Plot Induce Stupidity [PIS] still continue at full warp!

* They try to convince people 4 centuries behind to realize their nature and what are they now, but they don't bother to bring some prove? You expect they just trust and accept you with talking?
* Aahh.. So all that stupidity setup apparently for the benefit of Janeway made a compelling speech to convince Earthart, and for Earhart take charge the lead of the 37 group (sorry, it doesn't made you look cool after all the stupidity beforehand Captain, especially with a soap story)
* Another alien group appears, and.. they are again hard-headed-alien, shooting ensued.. cool FX
* Wait.. last time I check, Janeway phaser is confiscated by Fred, how suddenly she's holding it?
* That another alien turns out to be... a human too. They start shooting fire because they thought they're facing a Briori? FFS, you can't recognize your own species?
* Even if they're too stupid to recognize human in their face and think facing a non-human species, are us (human) depicted to be so voracious that start firing at the first chance suspect something suspicious? Not trying analyze the situation? Not trying to make communication? Heck, human in 20th century already try to contact alien with SETI project in real-world. Braga, is this your view of your own race with 20th-21th century knowledge? What are you smoking when you wrote this? You turn us into another hard-headed-alien just for the sake of action with little sense? SMH!
* Oh gawd! Drinking would kill you one day, and make big-words confession. How bad and more cheesy this can get!

Seeing the city would be nice, but I don't really care about that this point. What I want to know is why the Briori abducted the human from 20th century 70.000 ly away? Why a highly advance civilization need slave? How advanced their technology? Where they come from? Where are they now?

Earhart also so underused here. Mainly for Janeway speech moment, and then reduced to awe-ing the ship.
It stands to reason that if it were real Earhart, no way she's gonna pass a chance travel with spaceship. But I understand that maintaining recurring guest star and practically changing the trek-history and real-world related history maybe a little too much for the writer. It's a little thing that concern me compared to the glaringly buckload HOLE in this episodes anyway.

One thing that I do appreciate in this episodes is :
Consider the offer to stay on the planet and giving the crew freedom to choose. We know pretty much no-one will go (not the main cast), at the very best.. a handful of unnamed-crew (that don't matter anyway). But at least, this advance the overall premise of Voyager that the long-journey home is start taking the toll and the first time Janeway said something to effect 'Starfleet feel so distant now'.

Wow.. I don't realize I'm rambling that long. I just so angry and disappointed such great premise episode with potential to be one of the classic, reduced to entertainment value with cool special effects only, wasted and ruined so badly!

2 (**) star for me

------

@Skeptical. Interesting notion about that AM band. Reminded me of Carl Sagan, Contact. It is considered that the first transmission powerful enough to break earth ionosfer and leave to outer space is 1936 olympics broadcast, reached 41 countries across the planet, and featuring... Hitler!
While the signal is possible reach hundreds or perhaps thousand of light year, it's considered the signal will be so quiet and the chance of alien race found it is minuscule.
Yeah.. an AM band would be very unlikely for even leaving atmosphere, but hey.. it was interesting and amusing for me ;)
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Ildaf
Tue, Feb 14, 2017, 12:01am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Learning Curve

Hmm.. Tuvok not very logical here eh..
Why there's only 2 option of : Intergrate to Starfleet or Throw to the brig?. Aren't that mean forcing someone against their will.
They're not voluntarily joining Starfleet didn't they, and as Dalby eloquently put :
"We didn't ask to come aboard this ship. But we understand the situation we in, and we've done the best job we can, and now you're telling us that's not good enough!". Dalby is correct 100% here.

How about relieve them from duty, give them status as guest. They have guest in Voyager. Kes and Neelix are guest, and Starfleet vessel having guest or family member on ship is common. They don't want to follow rule and protocol as crewmember, then it's very simple :
Invoke their status as crewmember, limit their access, authorization, privilege and assign them as guest.
Funny how they help alien and provide guest quarter every now and then for them, but unwilling to do that for their own species, rather : brig-way, or my-way?. It's not like they're running vital job on Voyager, and I'm sure losing 4 crewmember is something they can afford.
You sure being logical here Tuvok?

If later they missed or loss by the reduced privilege and feel up to take the job or more responsibilities, then that's the time to re-integrate and re-trained if needed.

Fine... So they are forced to do it, even Chakotay give medicine of 'Maquis-way' to make sure of that eh. But why the hell take route of 'Drilling Sergeant' and treat them as 'Teenage Cadet'. Effectively humiliating them in front of everyone by running through all the ship? SMH
Maquis as a rebels and underdog never consider retreat as an option? SMH
If I recall, Chakotay run away and retreat from Cardassian into the Badlands.

I was dreading this gonna be boring and predictable as it gets, and hoping I was wrong. Alas, not.. It's as boring as it can get (excessive and long drill training), as predictable as we can expect (encounter problem and both has to adjust), and with classic cliche to wrapped it up (live saving situation lead to understanding of both side).

I swear I saw that coming miles away, that somehow five of them will be in jeopardy situation, have to work as team to save their ass, and Tuvok save them or try sacrifice himself to save the day and come to earn their respect. Of course the sacrifice part would have to be spoilt or we lose a main cast.
I predict a transport to the sickbay by the crew and while Tuvok recuperating, 'The Beaver Family' have their moment there. Well, they made a bit variations of that by making the Maquis saved him back, but not totally surprising.

The only thing I enjoy from this scene is Neelix actually helpful and not be annoyance for once. I appreciate the effort to address the issue of Starfleet-Maquis integration, but if it's done as badly as this one, I think I rather have a holodeck theme or alien-of-the-week.

My favourite line :
"Get the cheese to sick bay"
It's as if they acknowledge the whole episodes is as cheesy as it can get!

Hardly enjoyable.
1.5 star for the effort of stick to the Voyager main premise, and not totally brain-dead
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Ildaf
Mon, Feb 13, 2017, 8:00pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Jetrel

I agree for the most part with @Ken, @Skeptical, and @Peremensoe

Why the Doctor didn't demand for prove and explanation of this 'metrimia' disease, then confirm it himself is beyond me. He just settled to roll over and let unknown scientiest take over his job and responsibilities? Even more dubious with the knowledge that the scientistis have questionable past and morale, not to mention the likely of having ulterior motive? That just stretching it.

Janeway welcome Jetrel is an okay, she has a reason to worry about Neelix and Neelix agree she represent him. But let him having a free reign on the ship, without any security precaution, and supervision?
I thought several episodes ago Janeway already give Doctor a way to deactivate himself and to prevent being turn-off by crew (Eye Of The Needle)
Now.... the Doctor can be deactivated even by a non-crew member?
Dumb! Dumb! Dumb!

I'm willing to overlook that flaw as a minor for overall advancement of plot. Sloan did a great job delivering the complex disturb scientiest, and we see Phillips can make really good performance given the chance to do it. The build up working well for the most part and we can relate to Neelix and Jetrel. THATS UNTIL.....

The writer turn Neelix into coward. In a single act, not only Neelix character is getting heavy blow again, its also a huge cop-out for Neelix and Jetrel coming face to face overcome the conflict and get proper resolve.
So now his anger for his family and 300.000 people on his colony died is unjustified?
He is actually angry to himself but not really angry for all that killing?
So now all Neelix have to do is forgive and stop hating himself? Jeeezz!
Kes, go back to your quarter or hydroponics bay.

Whether Neelix a cowardice or not is irrelevant to the issue. That's just ducking and avoiding the issue of what is Neelix view on the cascade/nuclear event.
'Can Neelix overcome/forgive/forget/accept that Nuclear bomb event as a victim?'. That issue is totally cop-out and forgotten with changing it to Neelix forgive himself! Are the writers telling Neelix is not angry with that event and just angry to himself because he done nothing/cowardice? ARRGGGH!!!

The End is absurd. Attempting to bring back to life people already scattered to atomic level? In 15 years time that atom is still preserved the way it is? The body and atomic structure maintain it's property after being vaporized? No further atomic/chemical/physical reaction happen afterwards?
This is like trying to remake completely burned building with material from its rumble, ashes, cloud, and wishing they're in the same precise condition afterwards!
[sarcasm]
Maybe this is the secret of how Voyager can have new shuttle instantly everytime it's blown to pieces eh? They insta transform it from blown pieces.
[/sarcasm]

Even if we're to allow suspension of disbelief that this is possible. Janeway and Neelix allow it? Huge chance they'll be in deformed, mutilate, mutant form. Do they think the victim will appreciate and thanks for it?

"Maybe the cascade is punishment for all of us?"
Not only Neelix is already forgive himself and Jetrel at the end, but now he's considering it's also his fault! WTF? Talk about over-the-top!
I can't ever imagine the family of Hiroshima/Nagasaki bombing would ever said something like that. Japanese governement, maybe for a political reason.
But the civilian and family of the victim?
Would you tell that to the face of family victim? It's punishment for them!
I wouldn't be suprise if they found that line to be highly insulting!
I do find it's VERY INSULTING.

I think it'll be better if Neelix stick that he dont believe and forgive Jetrel. Jetrel as the 'mad scientiest' desperate to undo some damage goes to the length at what we saw on transporter-scene. After witnessing that, Neelix realize how it's affect Jetrel greatly (physically and mentally), said something along the line that 'He still can't forgive that event and Jetrel, but he understand and don't blame Jetrel personally, and it's time to put it behind and move on'

2 (**) star
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Ildaf
Mon, Feb 13, 2017, 3:31pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Faces

Hey... Fun with DNA time?

Well, I don't mind it this time. At least it's not the preposterous de-evolve, mutant, or random genetic change. The Vidiians also have the credibility to do something like that, as they're the most advanced species on medical knowledge we known so far.

Dawson put a great performance. The only minor annoyance for me is why B'ellana-Klingon have to talk that slow? I'm guessing is to put emphasise between the two B'ellana. It certainly made the klingon-side looks a little more dimwit and slow on the uptake, all brawn approach, but a bit too much I think. The timid person of human-side to show the more brain approach is a little more subtle.

It's interesting to note that at the end, B'ellana still can't fully accept the klingon-side of her by saying : "I just have to accept the fact that I'll spend the rest of my life fighting with her". Foreshadowing that this inner-conflict will be a recurring theme of her character development I suppose.

We know Durst is a 'redshirt', so is the dozens crew of original Voyager (Lt.Cmdr Cavit, Lt. Stadi, whole group of medical-crew, etc). But can't they pay respect to the newest loss one of their crew? How is affect to rest of the crew morale? At least give some acknowledgement that the man is exist, and not just be forgotten once his scene time expired (as if he never there).

The Talaxian being forgotten also very annoyed me. Why the show invest considerable scene time with him. Influence, interact, and help main character (Paris, Torres) if he just going to be left and forgotten at the end? The plot can advance just well without him. The actor does a very good job. In 5 mins scene time, he even have more dimensional character than Neelix in all season one so far, all to be scrapped and forgotten.
It seems as if he's never exist after done with his scene time. I wonder what Neelix said if he knew the crew conviniently forgot his fellow race after the Talaxian prisoner help them.

Some conclusion at what happen to the Talax and other prisoner would be nice. If they don't want the Talax and other prisoners to be saved on Voyager, it can easily integrated to script. Lets say give Paris or Chakotay said "We don't have time or resource to help all the prisoners. You know way around here, would you join and try to escape with us?", then kill him in ensuing struggle if they wish, or just mention in the log they drop him in their next colony stop they come across.
Heck.. Just give us some insight of whatever uptake of Voyager crew on this dilemma and affect them, not just forget as they ever exist.

Last. Luckily the prisoner guards is infected with Voyager crew incompetent virus. They can't find a single escapee, they put a console in prisoner barracks for everyone to access, their languange is so easy to translate and decipher (are the universal translator also translate written languange in console?) that a human can easily break it within minutes, they don't put enough guards on high-security lab, etc.

Great character episodes, but lack believable plot and avoid to address some problem on the stories.

3 (***) stars
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Ildaf
Sun, Feb 12, 2017, 4:36pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Cathexis

This is also the third time in season 1 we encounter "Anomaly/Phenomenon turn out to be a life-form"

Last, what's the holodeck scene have to do with any of this anyway?
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Ildaf
Sun, Feb 12, 2017, 4:18pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Cathexis

I think the idea is decent. But the execution is bad, well... really bad, it's all over the place. The whole crew act like having brain damage and there's airborne idiot virus plaguing on the ship.

* They suspect alien on board, no one suggest making communication/first contact?
* Turn out the 'alien' is Chakotay, well.. it's not really out of character for Chakotay to be dumb and not just say 'Hey... It's Me!. I entered my command code to prove who I am. Get out of that fricking Nebula!'
* Doc, care to explain how brain pattern can be exist in the air? Without actual brain to hold that 'neural pattern', computer device, or anything? That brain/consience whatever can just floating in the air and jump?
* Paris and Torres got possessed, but not suspect anything (you suddenly jump to another place and doing something else), that doesnt make you question yourself? You need Doc to pointing that out using biomolecular scan?
* Doc, thought you have 4 million something medical knowledge and 47 professional medical experience (including McCoy) , but you dont recognize Vulcan Neck Pinch right away. You need Paris to conclude that?
* Aah.. The perfect ensign wandering his mind on urgent senior staff meeting, okay
* No one suggesting to working on group and watch each other back, prevent them from do anything out of ordinary?
* No one suggesting or even try/thinking method how to prevent the alien to 'jump' on them?
* Btw, Tuvok-alien. You manage to incapacitated all bridge crewmember right (the phaser-HAX)? Why dont you just go straight away to the Nebula? Why reviving them back again?
* They finally found (strongly suspect) Tuvok is under alien influence, and scheming all of this, but none safety measures taken before confronting him? How about 'Computer, erect force field surround the tactical station and transfer all the control to Ops station'. Or just stun him, question later!
* Errr.. a Chief Engineer (Torres) don't have authorization to eject warp core? How dumb is that! Of course in later episodes (as it suppose) the chief engineer is able to eject warp core (Day of Honor). I don't recall Geordi ever need to ask authorization from bridge to dump warp core either.
* Gosh.. Chakotay, map using your medicine wagon? Why not just plotting course using one of the panel you can easily acces by posses someone.
* Why can't Chakotay back to his own body in the first place for that matter anyway, he can easily posses anyone but not back to himself? He don't have external injury or any live-threatening condition, aside from 'losing neural-pattern'
* Ah.. yes.. after all that stupidity we still treated with that cliche of saved in the nick of time... awwww, cute!
* BAMM!! The Doc suddenly can put back Chakotay conciousness out of thin air (literally). How Chakotay conciousness can exist in thin air? Ah well... better not question that. But Doc can explain you how to transfer it back to his body, It using a series of technobable that require 10 hours to explain it (yeaaaa... right!)

The absurd and ridiculous is way beyond suspension of disbelief. Only the idea is sound, but the plot and script need to be put in the trashbin.

1 (*) star for avoid be totally offending, and at least have some dumb entertainment value.
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Ildaf
Sun, Feb 12, 2017, 4:48am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Heroes and Demons

We know it's only a matter of time to get the Doctor show and explore his character.
Since he's a hologram, well.. it just can't be avoided that we get holodock time.

But c'mon, unusual photonic activity phenomenon in protostar? then that photonic is *surprise* a life-form? Don't we have this mistaken 'phenomenon turn out to be life-form' several episodes before (The Cloud). Should I worry using my laptop now? I don't want their photonic emission to my eyes harm them if they turn out to be a life-form.

It doesn't stop there. Kim now in jeopardy because somehow his biological form transform into energy on the holodeck? Suddenly holodeck turn into transporter too? This made an occassional hiccup holo-malfunction of 'safety protocol disabled' looks pretty lame eh...
Oh boy... I feel sorry for Janeway, Torres, Tuvok and Chakotay sprouting nonstop technobable trying to sell this to audience for 15 minutes. They don't even look believe of what they're saying. Paris got more luck, and spared from the technobable by playing Mr. Obvious : 'Send the Doctor'.

Dang it... We know all of this is just excuse for Doc to go to the holodeck, we can see it miles away the moment Kim revealed missing on holodeck. Can't they find a better excuse for that and not using the same mistaken 'phenomenon turn out to be life-form' proceed by 'holo-malfunction'?. If they can't, at least please spare us by minimize the techno-torture and make it brief.. say 5-8 minutes for the prelude.

We're pretty much can guess how it's going to unfold afterwards.
Doc amused by his new found experience, Doc playing along with the holo-stories, Doc encounter some problem, Doc learned something new along the way (safe bet it has something to do with humanity), and then Doc save the day.

I just hope we get something new along the way, a different approach maybe?, or better, completely spoiling what we expect. Naaaah!
Piccardo performed well. As expected, we get some funny remarks and amusing scene, but the guest cast is just horrible, feels like watching high school theater act. What I don't get, is why he have follow-to-the-letter the holo stories? Just interact as you need and move along with your mission, you have 3 missing crew member there, remember?

I suppose Freya 'death' should be a touching moment and made us relate to how the Doc character now progress and starting feel emotion/awareness. But the story progressing so slow and predictable that it become too contrived and cheesy for me.
The two character even only met for few hours at best, but Doc feel attached and painful by the loss? Here is a being that directly dealing and witness some death (even do autopsy if needed) of his fellow crewman in regular basis without so much batting an eyelash. Now suddenly he feel a great loss for some random character he just met? Talk about stretching it. Good thing Piccardo not overdo with his act, almost made me groan.

I'm sorry, there's not much to offer in this episodes for me to enjoy it.
The premise is silly, the execution is predictable and boring, the technobable is dreadful, the guest star is horrible, the character development is contrived and hollow.
It's barely watchable, only Piccardo funny remarks that help a bit, but can't do much for the show demise.

1.5 stars
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Ildaf
Sat, Feb 11, 2017, 11:56pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Prime Factors

That's more like it, stick to your premise!
To top it off... Taste your own medicine style. How do you like it if alien 'Prime Directive' get thrown in your face and possibly denying you way to get home much early! Awesome premise.

Too bad the writer didn't dare enough to put Chakotay in direct confrontation.
Seems to me Chakotay purposely omitted from doing it in this episodes, so Janeway don't have to face direct opposition someone challenge her morale.
Tuvok as a Vulcan and Janeway loyalist can't provide that one effective. Chakotay as Maquis and first officer on the other hand is the perfect vehicle (it stands to reason all the Maquis and good chunk of starfleet officer will back him up), He have a very strong ground to bring this matter up directly!

I like to see Janeway answer Chakotay, is her principal alone is worthy throw a mean to get home? is a mere-literature worthy to maintain that principal? It's not even a weapon, or other high-tech technology that has potential to change the power balance... It's pretty much 'harmless' compared to huge potential they'll gain. And as Tuvok pointed out, they not even directly in violation of Federation Prime Directive. It's the dealer who's violating the local-law.

How will Janeway react if Chakotay said something along the line "Half the crew is unsettled you dont budge to your morale principle just for a mere literature. They ask me to do something, some of them is even talk about mutiny". "How if I lifted you of that burden by taking full responsibilities if Federation blaming the decision, I'm an outlaw already anyway, but I will not let a mere literature and your morale principle standing on our way and the whole crew to get home".
I bet the writer gonna have a hard time come up with reasonable answer

Maybe it's a wise decision by the writer for not bringing this up on Chakotay. Instead choose with Tuvok 'taking matters to his hand'. With Tuvok-way, pretty much Janeway is cop-out to take the brunt of big-decision and consequences. It's a no-lose situation for her now, while still has a strong impact on scene because Janeway-Tuvok long standing relation.

If it's working, Janeway will simply reprimand the crew responsible, but everyone know it's not a big deal anyway, if it means they're back home.
If it's not working, Janeway high-horse now is more justified, and she can deliver her 'I believed you, but you let me down', which later become so often and a patented trademark [TM].

Using the planet to power up so they can only use the device while on orbit is a smart plot. Forcing the conspirator to made 'now or never' decision before Tuvok inform Janeway or they can made sufficient test. That plot part is crucial and what made this episode from good to solid strong episodes. Solid performance by all the main and guest cast (bar that creepy Gath), and there's some good character development.
For sure they're not gonna get home and the plan will fail, so we got the first glimpse of that patented talk.

Also a bit of irony/hypocrite/inconsistencies (you pick) that shortly later in the 2nd season Janeway trade with Terorist/Guerilla/Resistance movement on 'Resistance' (I bet it cost way more than a literature), smuggling people on 'Counterpoint', and some other. All the while maintain her high-morale stand in between episodes.

Damn Harry. Couldn't you enjoy the chick first!
Everyone mention that Sikarian chick, but the medical-ensign behind Paris on the opening is also cute!

I'll throw 4 stars if Chakotay thrown into equation too and the focus is more to Janeway dilemma and how it (possibly) affect her character and decision making in the future.

Still and outstanding episodes
3.5 stars
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Ildaf
Sat, Feb 11, 2017, 6:00pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Ex Post Facto

Aaah.. I guess with Kirk-Riker-esque personality resemblance for Tom, this one episodes couldn't be avoided.

A federation officer suspected having an affair with the scientist wife, and then killed the scientist. The officer in question also spent time and a night with his fellow officer on the station... i mean the house. The premise almost like a carbon copy to 'A Matter of Perspective'. Well, at least Geordi contribute something to solved the mistery.. while poor Kim just sorta happen to be there..

Good show for Tim Russ, but I don't see any character depth or development here. It just Tuvok show doing his Vulcan-thingy, and it's not even that special given the stupid plot the stories thrown at us.

There are some major issue though :
* No Baneans people notice the symbol-whatever thingy on Paris planted memory? Aren't that memory supposed to be reviewed by the court, police, or whatever justice system for the trial and execution (planting memory)? No one suspect anything?
* Seems sending a message/communication to Numuri is a piece of cake thing, as evidence shown by how easy the Agent/Doctor telling Numuri-patrol the progress of Tom Paris case without anyone know. If sending message is that easy, and the agent/Doctor already have the data. Why goes the trouble of planting it to Tom, then smuggling it the hard way? Just send the data right away via your transmission, you idiot! (And Mr. Vulcan, can't you see how illogical this is?)
* Send a shuttle planted with live amuniton enough to blown space-ship along with your officer is a good idea eh? At first I thought they're going to fool them by faking live-sign and remote the shuttle. Well, I guess they are lucky Tuvok deduction is right that Numuri want Tom huh. Because if it's wrong and Numuri shot the shuttle.. BOOM, Janeway just send two of his officer to their death (not entirely out of character for Janeway anyway)
* The shuttle was boarded on the Numuri vessel cargo bay. Boy, they sure lucky the Numuri people is such an idiot that they don't scan the shuttle beforehand or raise shield right after the shuttle is on their cargobay, so Tom and his side-kick can't be beamed back to Voyager (after all the workhard to get Tom)
* Or maybe Numuri DID raise shield after they got the shuttle. But on this instance (because it was not Kim who operate the transporter?) Voyager can easily get a lock to their officer, maybe even passed through their shield while at it. If that's the case, wouldn't be the last time anyway. We'll have this again on 'Maneuvers' and 'Dragon Teeth'

I'm no dog expert, but was that a chihuahua on the Delta-Quadrant? (sorry, can't help).

The stories are mediocre at best, even barely watchable without the plot hole. Without the hole, it's a 2 star. I take .5 star for the hole and some stupid thing going on.

1.5 star
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Ildaf
Sat, Feb 11, 2017, 2:04pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Worst Case Scenario

Kinda a sarcasm write on how Voyager should have taken approach on the 'real' Voyager by the writer eh? Don't have to the extreme of mutiny, but seeing some real friction, Chakotay seriously challange Starfleet idealism, etc on the 'real Voyager'' would be a nice thing to see.

I agree the first part is good, but the pacing is a little slow, also the repetition with Paris is too long. Some of the line are good though and help a little, but I think it could be done in 15 mins instead of 25 mins just to findout it was Tuvok who created the 'holonovel'.

I'm a bit torn about the plot twist of 'Seska taking over'. It was nice to see Seska again, i like her character. She's the only 'intellectual opponent' for Voyager, so it was good to see Hackett back.
Will the real Seska tamper with Tuvok program if she know it? Maybe
Will the real Seska program something like that to Tuvok program?
That's the real problem as many has pointed. Killing Tuvok and Tom is no-use for the real Seska (alive or dead). It's very unlikely Seska will change the program to do something like that.
Seeing as the change is taken sometimes before 'State of The Flux' episodes, which she couldn't possibly know how the event will unfold. The most likely if she found the program and decide to do something with it is :
a) Gathering as much intelligence data.
b) Send a secret comm signal to her allies (Kazon-Nistrim) after the program found she's not on Voyager anymore (the program assumed she's still alive) and on board Kazon vessel.

Will that be more interesting plot twist? I'm not sure either, Kazon is already overdue and uninteresting at this point. But it is painful to see Seska transform into idiot-villain and 'talking-killer'. So either Kazon threat of someway by the program, or Paris-Tuvok collaboration will do better in my view to end this, rather than painful scene of idiot Seska.

"Who says deux ex Machina is an outdated literaly device?" -- Janeway
Don't worry Captain, they listen to you. You'll get plenty of that coming. In fact, right after this episodes you'll have it as one of your crew. A built-in 'Borg knowledge assimilation number xxx' and 'Nanoprobe Magic'. Not to mention a literally plot-armor for series-finale. :D
At ease Captain.....

I'll go for 3 stars if halfway to the end the stories go with proper plot and conclusion. But with Seska turned into dumbed-down-villain, I have to take .5 stars.

2.5 stars for me
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Ildaf
Fri, Feb 10, 2017, 2:06pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Before and After

@ George Monet
"The time traveling in this episode was insultingly stupid. This is not how time travel works....... this complete failure by the writers to understand how the time travel would work...."

George. I think you completely spoiled by so many tropes of time-travel stories. Which has usual the usual temporal paradox, timeloop, alternate reality, etc...
In all fairness, no one really know HOW TIME TRAVEL works, it may even be impossible for all we know. It is.. a fiction afterall. So to saying this is not the way its work is.. ignorance on your part.

I'm getting tired of the timetravel tropes for quite a time now. It's awesome on BTTF. It's wonderful on some episodes like 'Yesterday Enterprise' or 'Year of Hell'. But it's also sucks on some episodes because offer little to no explanation and totally confusing with the usual excuse 'effects can precede cause', like the one on 'Time and Again', 'Parallax', 'Relativity' for episodes that dont make sense. Heck, 'Future End' is also fall to that trope, and only kinda work because has strong stories overall, although if you think it further.. still don't make sense!
The idea is beaten to death already to make 'out of the box' episodes so they can kill/destroy/do whatever awesome happen, just to reset it at the end because 'alternate reality', 'timeline reset' or whatever.

For me. This one is BEAUTIFUL for the SIMPLICITY of time-travel stories it's offer. No paradox, no-nonses. Imagine you can go back to the time of your younger self to change future, something that we often dream of. It's as simple of that, no-fuss. You still you, only all the universe around you that change, maybe one episodes that has a little resemblance to this is 'Tapestry'.

The only handicap for this episodes is.. You don't remember your past, because you actually travelling from the future to past, working backward. Your memory now become the future for all the others, while their past is now become your future! It's an idea that not-hard to grasp, and it's worked well here.

----

"Kes cannot travel backwards in time and enter her younger body because the Kes soul housed in the younger Kes body would still be housed in the younger Kes body."

Why cannot? I explain in the above. The younger will not still be housed. It's changed, replaced!. It's even the most simplest, you still you.. no paradox-fuss!

---

"It is the chronitons in the old Kes body that are causing the old Kes body to travel back in time. Kes's soul does not have chronitons so would not be able to travel back in time without the body that has the chronitons."

No.. It's the bio-temporal trearment that set the whole motion of travelling backwards through time. For her, she's already got the radiation because 'Kes old' dying moment in bio-temporal bed now become the starting point of 'her-birth'.
Forget the radiation, that's not even matter anymore once the 'travelling backwards' already in motion. The way to stop it is to put her back in bio-temporal to bring back her in sync, the radiation only matter to know the value offset need to administer the dose on bio-temporal.

---

"We see how time travel would work when old Kes travels back in time to kidnap her younger self and try to smuggle her younger self away. Then that young Kes leaves a message for herself for when she comes back as an old woman."

Fury episodes? I see that one is a messed for the reason I mention early on. Fury has so many plot holes. You believe the younger Kes will still act like nothing happen after she know Janeway would kill her in the future?
That knowledge alone should affect her relationship to many of the crew (may choose to go home early, stop to learn mental-ability, and so so many unfathomable consequences along the way), also affect Janeway and Tuvok as well. Event and timeline SHOULD unfold DIFFERENT afterwards, no way it's still going exactly the way before like nothing ever happen!

---

"The episode is also self contradictory. When Kes is traveling back, she travels to a point before she is housed inside an empty Kes body that hasn't yet been affected by chroniton particles. This means it is completely impossible for her to continue jumping back any further in time because it is the chronitons that are making her BODY jump. If her body doesn't have chronitons then her body can't jump back in time."

Again, it's not the the chronitons that make her jump and backwards in time. It is the bio-temporal treatment that doing it. The chronitons radiations only the carrier, something like a carrier-virus or latency/dormant-virus on medical. But it's the bio-temporal treatment that trigger that 'virus' to active and set the backwards-time.

====

Almost all the cast doing excellent job in this episodes, particularly Lien and McNeil. Linnis also a joy to watch. Only Garret Wang--as usual (Harry Kim) and Andrew character who's underperformed.

I enjoy much this episodes even after rewatching. I voted this one of the rare-gems on Voyager.

In retrospect. This episodes could do help 'Fury' a little and put a little sense for her angry. She has reason for it. Because with her early departure and Janeway-Torres alive, she lost her life/family as she know it..
Instead, the writer on 'Fury' choose Kes simply just go senile and nuts. Well, Fury is still a messed stories tough whatever the reason given, and disservice to Kes character.
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Ildaf
Fri, Feb 10, 2017, 12:11am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S2: Parturition

@Del_Duio
How about a leola root broth!

====

Of course the transporter problem, radiation, interference, and whole yadda yadda is just contrived setup, and an obvious attempt to put Paris-Neelix to resolve their problem. But once that is overlook, I find the show is enjoyable, and at least stay true to the character traits we know. We know Paris is the best pilot, and Neelix is the best for food resource.

I also think is about the time the show put an end for Neelix annoying overjealosy attitude. It's excessive and overbearing. I guess they recognize that and try to solve in this episode (as Michael Piller said after he voice his criticsm Neelix continue potrayal as Buffon per last episode 'Twisted').

Considering not much value on the overall stories, and we're pretty much know what the show direction going to be from the start (reconciliation of Paris-Neelix). I find the scene, act, and dialogue is a well-done, not stray-out from their character, and manage to do their goal just fine while avoid overdoing it (by having some live saving situation like Tuvok in 'Learning Curve' or other silly forced situation).
McNeill and Ethan Phillips doing a respectable job here, and I really feel sorry for Phillips that his character doesn't get much chance or develop further (doomed to be annoying character and comic relief for much part).

I'm a bit curious Jammers, you rate 'Learning Curve' better than this one. While i think that episode is way much more silly and contrived without so much character development anyway.

While Jammers think the alien is uninteresting by cruise in, fire their phasers a few times, check their nest, and leave. I think it's refreshing. Their attribute is quite easily be associated to a defensive nature of species protect their hatchling.

Leave the egg unattended also something reptilian do in real-nature environment, I defenitely do not think that strains credulity Jamers. Tortoise is even known for travelling hundreds kilometer back to their born habitat just to hatch. So I appreciate it the alien relate to our known nature of reptilian, and for once I do think the writers do the homework.

I'm also grateful the script avoid the another hard-headed-alien of the week and save by the last second cliche. So overall for me it's a good character development episodes, especially for Neelix.
The one grudge I have is the annoying shaking camera effect, but it's fairly a minor, and thank god only on the shuttle scene.

Some insert-joke that still related to the plot also help :
"Ï'm a doctor, not voyeur" -- Doc to Janeway
"How delightful. Why I can quote you autopsy report from duels as far back as 1538" -- Doct to Kes
"And you expect to take care this thing until what? It graduates from high school, college?" -- Paris to Neelix

Enjoyable and refreshing episodes for me, also a good character development
3 (***) stars
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Ildaf
Thu, Feb 9, 2017, 9:06pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S2: Twisted

Oh boy.. Another wasted premise!

The idea is decent, a ship that keep changing it's shape mysteriously, and the crew racing with time to solve the problem.
We got a grasp of what's going on 10 minutes into the show (5 mins of that is wasted/unrelated Kes B'day scene), it's doing quite okay and starting to get eerie by the scene of B'ellana and Baxter in transporter room.
Alas, as usual it's going down hill from there. We got Doctor comedic scene in the holodeck, then Neelix annoying-overjealous scene over Paris and everything after that, completely ruin the tense buildup.

It's not until after another 15 minutes that the plot advanced when Janeway accidentally contact that 'space distortion whatever', rescued back to holodeck, then a real attempt to overcome 'this week anomaly' being made by Torres-Paris, then Torres-Kim (with overplay act) . That attempt took around 10 minutes screen time.
With a total ~35 minutes into the show, we have 10 minutes left.

What happen on the last 10 minutes? Nothing! Yeah literally... nothing...
Tuvok suggest they doing nothing as the attempt proven fruitless so far and another attempt may only endanger them more, while doing nothing is not proven otherwise.

I get the idea of the writer try to convey the nuances of hopeless, defeat, and acceptance, but it's feel really weak. It didn't feel like they are trying that hard anyway, too much time wasted on circling the corridor scene, by the time attempt was made it's on 30 mins mark.
Maybe a better pacing and directing could really help this episode, but it's all too late.
The defeat scene is not really that strong, feel clumsy... and dragging. In part, maybe because of the weak scene before it, in part.. maybe because we know there's not much to it anyway, we know very well the ships will be okay and shiny afterall!

I like the body-languange of Chakotay reaction when told he's going with Neelix, I think that's the best act of Beltran so far.. eh...
And... the scene of delirious Janeway is priceless
"it..s... tal..king...to...me....... do.. no..thing". I'm literally laugh out loud on this scene.
I just hope we have many episodes of Janeway act like this. I'm going to give a bonus 1 star for that scene alone!

1 star for the episode and another 1 star for the delirious Janeway scene
2 (**) star
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Ildaf
Thu, Feb 9, 2017, 3:56pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Parallax

I was hoping the 2nd episodes dealing with repairing the ship, losses of crew, then how integrating the maquis into Voyager (and handle the delicate problem come with it). Nevertheless, the ship is shiny and it seems the crew never been losses, it just been replaced on some starbase with a maquis crew (albeit having few disgruntled employee). But never a really big problem that require delicate action.

At least we have some unresolved problem with the integration, namely choosing for a new chief engineer.
I like the first half of the show, particularly the opening and banter between Janeway-Chakotay. They both made a solid point and reasonable, but i tend to agree with Chakotay more here.
Then it's revealed they just encounter anomaly with some temporal/time paradox on the mix. So, thats 2 for 2 cliche just on the 2nd episode.
A weak lame excuse to get into the main show, proving B'ellana worth as chief engineer to Janeway.. that is all too obvious.

And it's all go down the hill for the latter half part of the show. We knew Janeway was a science officer. But to made her sprouting techobable match with B'ellana, made each other continue finishing the sentence like they're twins, even wrapped the sentence at the end by shouting "Warp particles" together is too cheesy and way.. way over the top for my taste. Is this a teenager show?.
Hell yes Jammer, Janeway can take La Forge anytime on technobable match.. haha

Even worse after that.. It's contagius, the whole crew also start spewing technobable. Tuvok, Kim, Chakotay.. even Paris. Obviously they don't have enough material for the whole episodes and just trying to stretch it with technonses explanation. The shaking camera for the sake of dramatization made it more annoying.

We go to shuttle, this is not a bad scene. But why after they done widening the rupture they not just go straight out on the shuttle with voyager tailing the tail? Why they have to comeback to Voyager, wasting time and risking more (by have to choose which is the real one, and taking time to go back).

Speaking of wasting time.. Are we going to be treated with long cheesy speech of Janeway at every last scene of the episodes? She's doing it at the end of Caretaker, and now doing it again here. Aren't you suppose to get out as soon as possible before the rupture closing, wtf wasting time with cheesy speech? This is obviously not the time, a brief command will suffice!
I can even imagine Picard voice on my head "Mr. Data, take us out the here. Engage!" or Riker/Data suggest depart and Picard said "Make it so!"

Watchable episodes, but not a good one.
2 (**) star
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Ildaf
Thu, Feb 9, 2017, 1:27pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Caretaker

Solid pilot episodes, but with outrageous ending as a downfall!

Good Visual Effects, some insight to the characters trait. Decent setup plot, but it has it pitfall. There are some weird and stupid things as some of here already commented :

* A race capable interstellar ship having trouble with water? Well, at least it's a good thing that they want the technology and not having dumb moment just settle with bundle of water.
* Neelix practically trick and used Janeway-Voyager to get Kes. Janeway didn't bring this up, still accept and trust Neelix without questioning it? I expect her to confront him and put him under caution at the very least.
* The caretaker just kidnapped Voyager-Maquis crew, and killing more than a dozens of them in the process. But not only Janeway didn't push and confront this issue to the caretaker, she decided to help the entity wishes to protect the array rather than help herself and the crew!
* Janeway decision to destroy the Array. I believe this is a HUGE mistake by the writer. Stranded on Delta Quadrant with renegade crew is already challenging task, now they throw additional dilemma to Janeway but not willing to deal with the consequences (as we see at the end of episodes and throughout the series).
I think it will be better approach to let Janeway left with nothing can be done to use the array, or try to use the array but then failed, this will be more reasonable approach.
As Tuvok pointed, they don't have a clue how this will change the balance of power, they barely there and sure don't have the whole true perspective (for all we know, the caretaker could be the oppresant to another species and Kazon) and Janeway will be a complicit as a result helping caretaker if that is the case (As well as her first PRIME DIRECTIVE violations).

The conclusion is a big let down for me. It just make little sense (particularly after the stupid decision to destroy the array). Now let's see, after they destroy the array and made enemy with Kazon we have :
* Starfleet and Maquis forced to accept Janeway decision to destroy the array, only B'ellana questioning it, and she's quickly dismissed by Chakotay (who seems so quickly relinquish his influence/command and settled to play Janeway-sidekick). Let alone the Maquis, I find it's even hard to believe that none of the starfleet personel questioning the only mean they know to get home to be destroyed.
* They just loss at least dozens or more of their crew, heavy damage to the ship, but it seems they have no problem by the end of episodes (SURPRISE!!!).
* Dealing with the loss/dead crew, mourning and pay respect for them and repair the ship seems to me is the most prudent action to be done. The crew integration, reform chain of command surely can wait after the immediate problem is solved.
But No......... that is thrown aside, none of that happen as far as the viewer concern. The ships is magically repaired, the maquis crew is happily accept their integration (as the starfleet crew). Like there's nothing big happen, no live changing event happened. It feels like 'just another day in the office'. The crew just encounter another anomaly, got some of the crew injured and having crew replacement after transit on starbase.

That ship should be dealing with big repair problem and loss of the crew at the end of episodes. Not a happy bunch readily to work together like nothing big ever happened to them. It needs at least a whole episode (or better yet, several disjointed episodes) to deal with that!

I will say this will be a close to perfect pilot episodes if only they provide a good/reasonable conclusion. But the way this episodes end is just beyond me and destroyed that. It even has a cheesy lousy speech at the end without a single thread indicate and acknowledgement that they just lost a big chunk of their crew and supposedly crippled ship? SMH...

Side Note : Caretaker as an entity and species also interesting and provide huge potential for good stories as species that close to omnipotent being (at least to humanoid species). Yet, they only use it for 2 episodes and later choose to use (and destroy) Q character, rather than made good use their own creation and potential of entity/character.

3 (***) stars agreed
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Ildaf
Wed, Feb 8, 2017, 7:03pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: State of Flux

Easily the best episodes for Season 1

"I had my eyes on young ensign Kim" -- Seska
Haha.. Even as early in the series, Kim already destined to doom with women

I love this episodes. It has every part of what Voyager needs. Correlation and consequences to it's main premise, character growth, internal conflict based on reasonable development, and formidable intellectual opponent (not your weekly hard-headed-alien of the week). Hackett doing impressive job taking role of Seska.

Apart from straying out from it's main premise (lost in delta quadrant with limited resouce and renegades crew) over the series. Another thing that I think Voyager lack is presence of an equal opponent. Opponent with moral & politically complex, a cunning and intectually challenging opponent who can do battle of wits, battle of deception. Seska with Kazon help can provide this nicely (at least for a while).

I know Beltran having quarrel with the way writers and his character treated later on the season. But is he already lost interest as early on first season? He's having poor performance in this episodes. Even Lt. Carey doing a better job when being cornered as suspect.
Chakotay/Beltran on the other hand, looks indifferent throughout the episodes, and this should be his show! He doesn't look much worry, troubled, threatened when Seska accussed, or when he's talk to Seska.
Even on the closing scene with Tuvok, he just casually talk "Misery loves company, Tuvok". But nothing on his voice or body languange shown someone that has just gotten through big ordeal of being fouled, betrayed, lost, depressed. It's like he doesn't care and just doing his line.

3.5 stars
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Ildaf
Tue, Feb 7, 2017, 9:20pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Emanations

@ Jay. In fairness, it never mention how long it takes to get that 0.6 ly. Could be 1 minutes, 5, 10, 30 minutes. Who knows? But I sure don't want to see a 5 min scene Voyager go to the distance.

---

I don't mind the afterlife episodes. Anything but the usual cliche episodes of Hard-Headed-Alien or Anomaly-of-the-Week i'm okay. But I'm not sure what this stories want to tell. We know nothing about death? Well, nothing new there, it's beaten to the death (pardon-the-pun)
The implication to the social/belief exposed and challange? Just barely scratch

This stories has the potential to be character growth episodes of Chakotay and Kim, but it wasted on them. Kim with his technical knowledge can be utilized to found a way communicate or locate where he is, Chakotay with his anthropology knowledge can be utilized to learn more depth about the alien culture. Then working from both side they can work on elaborate attempt for rescue Kim. Along the way we can get glimpse how the interference affect their culture and belief.

Instead, Chakotay insight on the burial site come as a bit silly and no use at all for the overall plot. Only used as a shallow prelude that the people on burial site trust after-life.
Kim is the same thing. Wang, this should be your show, but some of the guest star even perform better than you. Not that the script much help though. The writer made him completely useless, not able to point out where he is, nor do anything useful to investigate the problem, the culture, anything that can be useful. Naah.. He's just go along with the flow and hope luck will bring him back by using the cenotaph again.

BTW. Who's dumb idea to wake someone from death, surround it like somekind of ambush, then proceed to interrogate, and you suprised she's panicking Captain?
Kes declared death? Didn't she's just recently learn anatomy, not even qualified yet for medic? Don't we have Doctor for that?

Meh for that last second cliche arrival of Kim, just when Voyager about to leave. Damn Torres, you should said 'leave' a little earlier.. we don't lose anything here

Agree on 2 (**) stars
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Ildaf
Tue, Feb 7, 2017, 5:28pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Eye of the Needle

First piece of Alpha Quadrant episodes

The talk scene between Janeway and Telek is nicely done. The subtle feel of lonely and stranded is well conveyed by choosing the scene done in Janeway ready room not on the bridge, although the 'Good Night' part is weird and out of character for Romulan.

The rest of the interaction with the Romulan is just feel like a complete setup, hardly feel like dealing with a Romulan.
The part of Janeway talk to Telek about his family feels too much as contrived.
The conversation inquiring his family is a bit too long and forced, I can't imagine a Romulan feel like chit-chat with Federation about his family, particularly when suspecting a foulplay (spy). It's an obvious attempt to relate the lost feeling to audience, but feel so forced and unnatural.
Tuvok finding about Telek also very unlikely, not that it matters anyway.

I know it's for dramatic purpose eh.. But hey, do you really think Romulan Captain will allow device being transported in front of his face without any security measure taken in place beforehand, not beaming it to transporter platform and placing it on high security containment fied then check before taking it.

The way the crew treat Doc as so rude is also unnatural and over the top. They're no stranger to alien and another lifeform, neither to artificial intelligence. I don't recall Data treated anywhere like that on the Enterprise, even in the early episodes. It doesn't click to me, and the scene on sickbay when the crew mistreated Doc feel like a complete setup.

Janeway and Kes scene is better and more believable.
Piccardo doing a great job depicting slightly annoyed and depressed without overdoing it, and it's a real character development that he's given acknowledgment as crew member by Janeway

Good and touching episodes, but the scene and script could do better.
2.5 star for me
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Ildaf
Tue, Feb 7, 2017, 1:25pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: The Cloud

Some amusing quote :
"There's coffe in that nebula (Or not)" -- Janeway
"In other words, you've never seen anything like it. Oh, I promise not to tell junior officer" -- Kim to Tuvok
"These people are natural-born idiots if you ask me"
"Let's see if we find some space anomaly today that might rip the ship apart" -- Neelix
"I don't think the captain is an idiot" -- Kes (I don't know you do sarcasm, Kes)
"We have complement of 38 photon torpedoes at our disposal Captain"
"And no way to replace them after they gone" -- Chakotay and Janeway
"Let's see, You ran your ships to it, fire phaser at it, and blew a hole in it with photon torpedo" -- Doctor to Janeway

A cliche with 'Phenomenon of the Week' that turn out to be life-form. It has some good character insight tough, but I don't see any real development. I like the last scene when the Captain try bonding up with the crew by joining the holodeck. Although why holodeck used while the ship depleted on energy resource remain a mystery to be resolve (or never to be resolved and best forgetten). The fact that writers need a holodeck scene this early on series is also worrying, seems they already dry on idea just on the 5th episodes.

Some annoying scene :
They back to the 'nebula' try to heal the wound without plan? Just making up along the way? Nice luck Captain!
Everyone tumbling/fall, B'ellana even fall from 2nd foor of engineering is over the top and tedious.
Neelix go 180 to self-appointed 'moral officer' after asking to leave on his shuttle?

Watchable, but nowhere near memorable
2 (**) star
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Ildaf
Tue, Feb 7, 2017, 11:39am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Phage

Good episodes with some promising character development

I like the Vidians, they're not just random Hard-Headed-Alien of the week and has some depth to their character. Too bad after 'The Faces' (which I considered also a good episodes) they drop this complex alien character trait which made them unique, and turn it into just another Hard-Headed-Alien of the week that want to invade the ship (Deadlock, Resolutions).

Kes and Doctor interactions was very good here. It puts the foundation for Doc motivation to growth beyond his programming (and ultimately the most interesting character in series), while also develop Kes character by taking more responsibilities.

Neelix also got some character development by taking initiative to form galley and interest on more active role on the ship. He's taken the news of incapacitated condition quite good and reasonable initially "Your ceiling is hideous".
Too bad from then on his character is spiraling down and damned by making him an irritable character for most of the time throughout entire series, also with Obsessive-Jealous trait beyond reasonable for Kes (which would not be tone-down and resolved until season 2).

I found Janeway resolution is acceptable/reasonable given the condition that :
a) Taken the lung back from the Vidians wouldn't work on Neelix as it has bio-chemically altered to suit Vidians (at least not without the Vidians help)
b) It's pretty much a First-Contact condition. Getting new enemy and inducing the possibility of all-out war to a new species, especially when you're alone in the galaxy should avoided if it's all possible. She made a strong grond stance and reasonable ultimatum here, so I'm okay with it.
I agree the misty-eyed is a bit over the top acting. Mulgrew over the series seems have the tendency over-doing with body languange, which sometimes I found downright annoying (the occassional smirk and smarmy attitude)

On trailer they mention to build "refining facility to process dilithium". This is one big lost potential that I regretted much they dont follow through (even seems forgotten and discarded by the end of this episodes).
How awesome can be if the idea is taken into action and expanded to "R&D and Tech Dept" later. Something like Astrometric Dept, but the idea here is to founded dedicated department for experimental technology and a way that allow them get home sooner.

They can utilize Harry (so he have something to do other than cant-get-a-lock) and Lt. Carey as recurring guest for that department. One or two episodes every seasons will be enough. That will give a real sense of Voyager evolve and adapt to it's condition. Find a way of replace depleted torpedo, new energy, new com method, etc. Not just magically having infinite torpedo from their ass, and found magic technology at any random episodes they chose to. Ah well, one can hope.

Good episodes, but not a great one.
Agree on 3 (***) stars
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Ildaf
Mon, Feb 6, 2017, 9:48pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Time and Again

I like the premise. Janeway and Paris trap in timeloop, the crew made rescue attempt and set the whole motion of catasthropy and timeloop. It's reminisence of 'TNG-Cause and Effect', but the premise is sound good to me.

Alas, not the execution though. After Janeway and Paris trap into the loop, the stories practically going (almost) nowhere, and we have to endure bad dialogue and terrible guest star performance until the last part when everything revealed and matter.

The excessive use of technobable also not helping. I can't help thinking they don't have enough material to fit the scene time. The away team keep repeating technobable to explain everything unnecessarily while circling around to attempt rescue.

While I'm at the away team. Why the heck is all senior officer go on rescue/away team?
They have Janeway and Paris trapped. Now Chakotay, Tuvok, Harry, B'ellana, and Kes sent on rescue too. Who's in charge on the Voyager bridge then? Neelix? They don't have 'redshirt' to spare for away team? All senior officer go down to the planet?
Guess they're lucky no Hard-Headed-Allien or another anomaly appears while the away team down there, otherwise the whole ship will be at the mercy of Neelix, Lt. Carey, plus a bunch of unnamed ensign and cadet. This is absurd!
Doc was spot on "It seems I found myself on the voyage of the damn"

All the sign for the big RESET BUTTON [TM] is flashing with all senior officer down there. It's obvious no way something really bad going to happen on the planet, or they will lost all the regular cast bar Neelix and Doc.

The conclusion is a big confusion, messed, and a let down. So what's really happen?
Was they really come to planet? Was preventing the rescue break the loop? How Janeway, Paris and the rest of the away team can back to the ship after the disaster been prevented? The loop start on the planet, why suddenly they comeback at the ship?
Heck, was it really happen anyway or was it all just Kes dream?

I suspect the writer don't even have the answer for the conclusion so they left this messed unanswered. It just too ambigous and don't make sense! (I knew better know, that this is one of many episodes on VOY that you have to disengage your brain to enjoy it) So here comes the cleanest Reset button. It never happened eh....

It tries to emulate 'Cause and Effect', but not even came close (pace, acting, directing). On 'Cause and Effect' the loop was broken by (finally) avoiding The Bozeman, and concluded it took 17 days for the Enterprise crew to break free.
Here on Voyager... They're just fooling around, without knowing what happen and Reset It. The ship is perfectly fine and shiny.. Nothing happen guys, we're just kidding!

What a waste of premise
2 (**) stars seems about right
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Ildaf
Mon, Feb 6, 2017, 1:38pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Author, Author

Great episodes utilizes satire comedics. But I'm afraid it takes the wrong turn once it transform into serious theme and ressurrect "Measure Of A Man" by bring the AI rights and sentient life form.

1. The mixing of this two extreme opposites it just watering down both of them, are this intended to be a serious or comedic? It just too extreme opposites and hard to fully enjoy the comedic or dig the moral element to the full. It's not quite funny again when the tone change, but also hard to accept as serious by the earlier tone it set and the limited time remaining to fully ingest and conclude.
2. The testimony of crew feel like a cheap cheesy scene, each basically said along the line "he's my friend.. help me do this and this", with closure pretty much mirroring 'MOAM'
3. This is not a new case. I'm suprised they didn't do a name-drop (something the show usually love doing to boost audience) by mentioning Data to help this case, which has much relevant. Maybe the limited time, royalty to Brent Spinner or just because it's the last season made the entire Voyager crew lazy to dig on starfleet database, along with Starfleet and Barclay (crewmate on Enterprise).

Last, but not least. I mention this on 'Life Line'. EMH doing menial task to scrap conduit, picking garbage, dilithium or whatever other menial task is just DONT MAKE SENSE. It just a plot tool to injured Zimmerman pride so the scene of Zimmerman Vs The Doc have more impact on 'Life Line'
I never imagine they gonna use that stupid plot and continue the issue, it's ridiculous in the first place and continue beating that bush is downright stupid.

Consider this :
* EMH relegated to scrubbing conduits and garbage. How is the society able to convert matter into energy need it in the first place?
* Even if it somehow need, with the whole 24th technology it should be piece of cake to make it an automatic recycling process or done via unmanned simple robotic.
* Even if somehow some special place needs that one to be done manually and a robotic tehcnology is not an option, made new hologram matrix specific to the task will be a better and more efficent, why use a sophisticated hologram matrix (and wasting a resource) for menial task.
* Even if somehow they need a sophisticated hologram, change the physical parameter so they are not resemblance a particular person (particularly the creator) will be a simple task, it doesn't make sense Starfleet want to humiliate their precious scientiest nor Zimmerman allow it.

In a short : NONSENSE!

---

Sorry, turning direction of the comedic into serious based on flawed premise actually kill the enjoyment and hurt the full potential in my view.
Instead getting one full outstanding comedic like 'Tinker Tenor Doctor Spy' or moral and ethically engaging like 'Measure Of A Man', this one just feel like half-baked with trying to do both based on flawed premise.

2.5 star
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