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Sarjenka's Brother
Mon, May 25, 2020, 1:02am (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek III: The Search For Spock

I agree with Justin: " It stands right up there with but slightly below the great ones."

It's not as good as "Wrath of Khan." And It's not as engaging and fun as "Voyage Home."

But it is a very solid followup to "Khan" with splendid cinematic scenes and nice character moments.

And it ruins the whole "odd number" theory. In fact, as far as I'm concerned, "The Motion Picture" also ruins the "odd number" theory.

Now the upcoming No. 5 -- yeah, it's "odd" and it's a stinker. Not looking forward it to, but I will persist. But first I get to see a shrieking probe wreak some havoc!
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Sarjenka's Brother
Sun, May 24, 2020, 11:38pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Nemesis

This whole "how does Neelix know" thing is a good example of people so overzealously looking for plot holes that they now come up with holes that don't exist.

Neelix had the info he had because he is the ship's liaison in these matters sometimes and he had talked to the ambassador. It's not a big moment, but they do write that in.

Anyway, I thought it was a good but not great episode. Three stars felt just right. And going back to "Before and After," that makes 10 in row. Or 9 with one semi-weak one.

That's a good streak.

And I personally loved the colorful way of speaking they wrote for the group Chakotay encounters.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Sat, May 23, 2020, 4:50pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Scorpion, Part II

I think this two-parter was the best thing "Voyager" as yet offered up. I never got to see the conclusion, so that was a nice treat.

To me, if Part I was four stars, then Part II is three and a half. It fell a little below what Part I set up, but just a little.

And I liked Species 8472 and fluidic space and all that. It was the most ambitious thing any Trek outing had tried up to that point.

Whatever else you say about Voyager, it LOOKED great. As far as visual spectacle goes, it's my favorite Trek. (That included the current offerings and the horrible JJA movies)
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Sarjenka's Brother
Sat, May 23, 2020, 4:41pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: The Gift

To me, "The Gift" is almost "Scorpion Part III". And that's high praise, because Parts 1 and II were the best things so far on "Voyager."

I liked it more than most of the board here. (That's not unusual -- I tend to think half a star to full star higher than Jammer and most of the crowd on at least half the shows).

I liked the handing-off-the-baton from Kes to Seven of Nine. And I enjoyed Janeway's situation: She was reluctant to let Kes evolve and grow and yet was forcing Seven to do the same kind of thing.

And yes, it would have been nice for Kes to have more of her final episode be about her, but I also liked the contrasting situations between her and Seven of Nine.

To me, there was enough there for the "The Gift" to have been something of two-parter too, as others have mentioned.

As for Garrett Wang -- I think his acting was better than the general consensus here without saying it was stellar. But then the writers rarely gave him material to work with either. He did great in "The Chute." So who knows.

But I think People magazine made a good choice. He did look really good at the time. Very boyishly handsome.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Thu, May 21, 2020, 4:31pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

I just watched this again for probably the fifth or sixth time. I'm with the crowd on this one: Still the best "Trek" movie out there.

So many great lines and themes. I still love the ending line:

"How do I feel? I feel young."
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Sarjenka's Brother
Fri, May 15, 2020, 7:02pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: The Motion Picture

I clearly remember exiting the theater in 1979 (yeah, I'm old) and being pretty disappointed. Of course, in 1979, I thought "The Apple" was great "Star Trek" because they killed a lot of crewmen in a lot of ways. And I thought "City on the Edge of Forever" was boring.

So, 1979 me was kind of stupid is what 2020 me is saying.

Since 1979, I've seen the movie a few more times over the decades, the last time being last night. And I must say the movie grows on me more and more with each viewing. It grows better with age and as I age.

I agree with Mark above. It's the most cinematic Trek movie ever. It's the most beautiful Trek movie ever. For my money, Kirk and Scotty could have taken twice as long surveying the stunning Enterprise from their little shuttle. It was glorious.

The movie is blessed relief from the whiz-bang / lens flares / million action moments we get today. I had a subdural hematoma about 10 years ago, and all that stuff literally gives me a headache since then.

Also, I like films, such as "Lawrence of Arabia," that I can actually STUDY. And this lets you study.

And no one has talked about it much on here, but the Klingon opening and score was a perfect 10!

In the end, though, the characters came off a bit cold. And Trek characters should be warm and emotive and passionate. Like many others, "Wrath of Khan" is the best Trek movie for me. It was character-driven with big thoughts. This was more scenically driven with even bigger thoughts.

In the final analysis, though, it's a good movie. Nowhere near the bottom of my Trek movie list. They aimed very high and lofty with this and didn't quite reach it, but the effort was laudable and gorgeous.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Fri, May 15, 2020, 6:33pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Displaced

I'm back to my usual enjoying-a-Voyager episode, then reading all the reasons (that I can't argue against too much) I shouldn't have liked it!

Sometimes this crowd is a bummer! LOL. But the points are well-taken.

That said, I still enjoyed it and found some of premises interesting. I just posted in "Before and After" that it kicked off six good episodes in a row. I still believe it.

But this one was probably the weakest of six. But it was still enjoyable time spent in the never-ending coronavirus era.

The EMH would have figured out Covid-19 in 19 minutes.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Fri, May 15, 2020, 6:24pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Before and After

Also, looking ahead, I think "Before and After" kicks off six good episodes of "Voyager" in a row here at the end of Season 3.

I can't think of a time in Seasons 1 or 2 or the first half of Season 3 with that many in a row that I thought were in the good or better categories.

And I happened to have missed a lot of these particular ones back in the day.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Fri, May 15, 2020, 2:29pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Worst Case Scenario

I'm often swimming against the stream on this board as I am easier on Voyager than most of you, but this time out, I agree with the bulk of the reviews and Jammer's.

We were headed toward four-star GOLD with this episode until the holodeck malfunction. Thanks to that trip up on the landing, it gets demoted to silver.

I honestly don't know why they didn't do more "community building" / character development / comedy episodes. Just forget the peril. Yes, most weeks, you need peril. But this show would have gone as epic if that had possessed the courage to ditch peril and just let the battle of the holonovel play out.

And on such long journey home, it totally makes sense that they would sometimes be in empty stretches of space, with nothing going on.

I wish there had been more community/camaraderie/comedy capers, not fewer. And full-on.

And it would nicely counterbalance the extreme intensity of the upcoming, high-stakes episode.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Wed, May 13, 2020, 7:51pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Before and After

I'm saying this as a serial overanalyzer and overthinker, but sometimes you just go to chill the phuck out, relax and enjoy the show.

And I enjoyed this show. Especially the Year in Hell foreshadowing.

Long-hair, post-Neelix Kes is great. Sorry she's nearing the end of her run.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Wed, May 6, 2020, 10:49pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Darkling

I found myself squarely in the middle on this one. I enjoyed it better than the detractors. But I can't say I loved it either.

I'm still trying to figure out Gandhi's "dark" side, though.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Mon, May 4, 2020, 9:41pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: False Profits

@Elliott -- always enjoy reading your breakdowns.

I think you are too hard on "The Price" and too easy even with 1.5 stars for "False Profits," but points well taken on your critique.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Mon, May 4, 2020, 9:31pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Unity

Count me squarely in the 3.5 LIKE IT camp.

Lots to think about philosophically and lots of good tension and twists. Very nice set designs and special effects.

The nitpicks aren't wrong, but unless something is egregious, I'm just learning to let those go. You're going to get a bunch of boring stories if the fourth Trek series 100% rigidly adheres to every little thing,
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Sarjenka's Brother
Sat, May 2, 2020, 1:00am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Blood Fever

Maybe it's just me, but I thought Vorik would make for an excellent and memorable one-night stand.

Count me in as a fan of the episode. I especially liked how we had seen Vorik before so he wasn't random. And I liked the Borg ending.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Sat, May 2, 2020, 12:48am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Coda

If we hadn't have had Next Gen and DS9, yeah -- we'd think this was incredible stuff.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Sat, May 2, 2020, 12:46am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Alter Ego

Mildly surprised and mildly delighted that I liked this as much as I did. Mind you, I went in with low expectations.

I'm amazed at the number of Voyager episodes I never saw or just plain forgot.

The guest actress was Phyllis No. 2 on the Young & the Restless. I liked her. Best scene: the Hawaiians attacking the crew.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Thu, Apr 30, 2020, 9:29pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Fair Trade

Agree with (Dr.) Smith above. This had a DS9 vibe that I liked.

I also like that it gave us a little bit better idea of the Delta Quadrant with the Nekrit Expanse and how it separated the outer areas from the rest of the DQ
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Sarjenka's Brother
Fri, Apr 24, 2020, 9:26pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Macrocosm

Generally, I'm about the "brainy" and "talky" Treks over the action Treks. That said, I'm fine with some action "Trek" sometimes.

This is mid-level action "Trek." A more interesting hour of diversion in the era of coronavirus.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Wed, Apr 22, 2020, 6:28pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Warlord

It's funny how I like a "Voyager" episode more before I read the comments on it.

I often find myself in agreement in the criticisms. So it's not that I think the critiques observers are way off base (sometimes I think they are but usually people have a good point).

I guess I just relax my brain a little (especially as I'm now watching in this long-term pandemic) and just go with it and don't think about every plot hole and nuance.

Jennifer Lien was a lot of fun. A surprising amount. I guess I like Treks where the more meek characters get taken over and get to be bad-ass for an episode. And I liked the alien planet's power struggle. That didn't bore me at all.

And frankly, I loved all the bisexual and threeway subtexts going on, not to be too creepy about it.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Wed, Apr 22, 2020, 3:02pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Sacred Ground

I like Kes. And I like these science/religion themes.

But I never got over the annoyance of Kes foolishly walking up to that shrine to begin with.

Also, why do so many "Trek" episodes happen caves? They are in caves all the time!
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Sarjenka's Brother
Wed, Apr 22, 2020, 2:53pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Remember

In this age of denialism, a very good episode.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Mon, Apr 13, 2020, 10:08pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: False Profits

I've never seen this episode until now.

I'd rather watch "Threshold."

I really liked "The Price" on TNG, so I was fine with a follow-up. But this was miserable. I'm not sure how this made it out of the writing pool to actual production.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Fri, Apr 10, 2020, 12:32am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Learning Curve

I'm an editor, and it's often my job to make what I have on hand better. I'm going to do the same thing with the show. I'm going to use the breakdown of Season 1 and see if I can edit it into a better, more cohesive, using as many of the original episodes and premises as possible.

But some of these will be brand new shows or either expansions of original shows. My main focus is "Delta Quadrant building" and having make the voyage home make more sense. I'm trying to arrange these into story arcs punctuated by the best one-offs. Here it goes -- my edited Season 1:

CARETAKER — The crew of the new USS Voyager, while searching for a missing renegade Maquis ship, gets pulled 70,000 light years from home. There they find the missing Maquis, as well as a being known as the "Caretaker," who brought them there for a reason, and may be able to send them back. They make friends (Neelix, Kes and the Ocompans) and enemies (Kazon).

FORK IN THE ROAD — Not so fast Voyager! You have repairs to make! While the newly integrated crew makes repairs to Voyager, tensions rise about how to best fix the heavily damaged ship as Maquis suggestions are repeatedly rejected and physical fights break out. Meanwhile, the landing party in the Ocompa underground city gets sucked into the power struggle between the traditionalists still grappling with the loss of the Caretaker and Ocompans like Kes who want to venture out. Episode ends with the leader of the rebel group contacting a Cardassian ship!

THE CARDASSIANS -- Turns out a Cardassian ship also got caught in the Caretaker's wave. The captain of the Cardassian ship wants to forge an alliance with the leader of the naive rebel Ocompans to his own ends. The Maquis are anxious to immediately attack the Cardassians (though Seska holds back just a little). Janeway takes a more cautious approach and hopes to join forces with the Cs to return to AQ. That raises Maquis hackles. In the end, Janeway learns of the Cardassians' plans to occupy Ocompa for their own ends and destroys the Cardassian ship with significant Maquis insight and advice. They leave Ocompa system, its inhabitants learning the harsh internal and external realities of life without the Caretaker, and Voyager finally begins the hard journey home.

+++

LEARNING CURVE — As the ship continues to experience technical difficulties after the battle with the Cardassian ship, Tuvok must train four inflexible Maquis officers the proper attitude to survive as Starfleet officers.

+++

TREACHERY -- Against Maquis wishes, Janeway and Voyager assists a Kazon Nistrim vessel that's been heavily damaged by an attack from the more powerful Kazon Ogla. Instead of being grateful, the Cullah and the Nistrim return the favor by turning on Voyager once their ship is repaired. The Ogla ship then returns for a Good, Bad and Ugly style showdown. Voyager barely comes out of it, learning a valuable lesson about the factions.

INITIATIONS — Kar, a young Kazon on a "coming of age" mission, attacks Chakotay's shuttlecraft but fails. When the Kazon's commander learns of the failure and captures Chakotay and Kar, the punishment is a death sentence—for both of them.

+++

PRIME FACTORS Part 1 — A technology of the Sikarians with the ability to return the Voyager home raises an ethical dilemma, as well as questionable actions carried out by several members of the crew. Ends with what looks like Voyager successfully nabbing the technology.

PRIME FACTORS Part 2 — Wrath of the Sikarians. They get pissed and are more menacing in Part 2 and from how they were in the original. Also functions as another indication not all is right with Seska.

+++

JETREL — When a scientist named Jetrel returns to see Neelix, the crew must determine his hidden intentions.

+++

HEROES AND DEMONS — A mysterious entity seizes control of the holodeck and begins capturing crew members, leaving only the holographic Doctor with the ability to free them.

+++

STATE OF FLUX — When Federation technology is found aboard a crippled Kazon ship, Chakotay must hunt for a traitor on board Voyager. More Seska!

MANEUVERS — With the help of the traitorous Seska, the Kazon attack Voyager and steal its transporter technology. But the Voyager crew may be headed straight for a trap if they attempt to retrieve it.

+++

COLD FIRE Part 1 — Tanis, the leader of a colony of space-dwelling Ocampa, offers Kes the opportunity to develop her mental abilities. He also offers the crew to meet his "Caretaker," Suspiria. But does Suspiria harbor good feelings or ill toward Voyager? This episode ends with Kes appearing to be out of control and a threat to Voyager.

COLD FIRE Part 2 — A more suspenseful end to whether Susperia will send Voyager back. And more menace from this brand of Ocampan.

+++

THE 37'S -- Heavily reworked from the original concept, but with the same basic dilemma: Settle down with the 37's or forge ahead. After beatings from the Kazon (and there are sure to be more ahead) and the demoralizing encounters with the Sikarians and the space-dwelling Ocompans/Susperia, the crew decides to continue onward -- straight into the heart of Kazon space.

[I really like the idea of the crew committing to the trek home at the end of the Season 1 and the emotional reaction of Janeway. Also, the aim here is to squeeze in the appearances of the Kazon and the Ocompans, who are supposed to be on the outer edges of the DQ. We'll be wrapping up the Kazon arc early in Season 2. Vidiians will be the Big Bads in Season 2 and with more episodes, we'll have more room for more interesting and sci-fi one-offs.

END SEASON 1
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Sarjenka's Brother
Thu, Apr 9, 2020, 11:10pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: The Chute

@Elliott: Excellent breakdown. I picked up on the homoeroticism as well.

And in this episode, Harry got to be the top some of the time! LOL.

Seriously, I thought the was a great episode and also thought it could have easily been a two-parter anyway.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Tue, Apr 7, 2020, 11:31pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S2: Resolutions

I'm with the three-star crowd on this. Not great, but pretty good. Never saw it before tonight.

And do I really have to be the first one to say how incredibly handsome Robert Beltran was at this time? Very classically good looking guy.

Good heavens -- that massage would have only had one ending if that had been me. And let's not forget Kate Mulgrew. Very sexy lady.

So yeah -- I like the sexual tension. Sue me.
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