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Lee Jones
Sun, Jun 6, 2021, 2:57pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S2: The Breach

[""As far as Travis goes, I really don't see why people are taking him as a sidelined token Black character. I think he has as much to do, and as much going on as the other non-main characters (Meaning the Captain, T'Pol, Trip and Phlox) Hoshi, Reed and Travis are just like the non-big three of the original series. I think Next Generation is the only Star Trek show (I'm not including Discovery or Picard since I've not seen them and have no intention to) to have a true ensemble cast where everyone got fairly equal time"]

I cannot think of a single Trek show in which the rest of the cast get as much equal time as the main one or three protagonists. There are two reasons why this episode annoyed me. One, why on earth was Tucker part of the Away team regarding the protagonists. I understand why Reed and Mayweather were on the team. Their skills were needed. Why on earth was the Enterprise's Chief Engineer on this mission? For what reason? And two, watching Archer trying to force Phlox to operate on the Antarian or trying to force the latter to accept Phlox's service reminded me on how much the Starfleet and Federation characters can be so damn controlling. It was irritating to watch.
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Lee Jones
Wed, May 26, 2021, 6:51pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: The First Duty

I don't know why the author of this review claimed that Nick Larcerno and Tom Paris were basically the same character. I believe their similarities were at best, superficial. Both were pilots that committed an error that led to someone's death. Both had initially lied about the accident. And both were portrayed by Robert Duncan McNeill. But there are differences.

It took Wesley Crusher's confession to finally lead Lacerno to take full blame for the accident. Tom Paris had admitted his guilt without anyone forcing his hand. Lacerno seemed to possess a "cult leader" personality. Paris did not. The latter has something of a cynical personality. Lacerno did not.

"First Duty" is a good episode, but there were times when the pacing nearly put me to sleep. Or perhaps I was tired at the time of my last viewing.
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Jon
Sun, Mar 28, 2021, 10:27am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S6: Sons and Daughters

I feel like this episode set out to do some interesting things, but it failed for the most part.


----PLOT A----
I like the idea of bringing Alexander back into things.

Well let me clarify. I would have preferred if Alexander were never a character to begin with. I hated the character in TNG. But now that the character exists, we can't just ignore him. We can either check up on him occasionally or kill him. And NO, we can't erase his memory and tell him he's someone else entirely. That's bad writing :p

Anyway, the writers did the right thing and decided to bring back Alexander. Quell the curiosity about wtf he's been up to and force Worf to face the fact that he's a bad daddy. A fine enough premise.

But the episode makes the first mistake by making the episode about Worf... this episode SHOULD be about Alexander (or at least about the both of them) yet we go through the entire episode not even sure what his motivations for being there are. We're never sure why Alexander decided to join the military. We don't know if he ended up on Worf's ship by accident. We don't know if he's trying to prove something to himself, his father, or what. Meanwhile he shows clear aggression towards his father (well earned aggression IMO) yet we never really explore those feelings he's having in any great depth. The most we do is acknowledge them. We go through the entire episode without really knowing what's going on in Alexander's head other than he's pissed at his pops.

Then this story ends really abruptly with him accidentally locking himself in engineering. Worf lets him out and suddenly Alexander forgives him and we get the overly convenient Star Trek ending where Alexander is initiated into the house of Martok. I have no idea what this ending is supposed to mean for Alexander, Worf, or their relationship. The episode failed to explain where Alexander and Worf were at the beginning of the arc, so how are we supposed to understand where they end up at the end? It was just a drunk song and dance about vague daddy issues and regret.

There's also one lingering element that bothers me about that ending... was it trying to imply that Alexander locked himself in engineering during the emergency on purpose with the intent to die to save the ship? Or was it implying that he locked himself in there by accident? Part of the reason I'm not sure is because AGAIN the episode doesn't give us any insights into Alexander's state of mind or motivations.


----PLOT B----
The B Plot on DS9 is acceptable, if a bit mundane. It does a good job furthering the strained relationship between Kira and Dukat. It was clever of Dukat (and by extension, clover of the writers) to use Ziyal as a device to try and manipulate Kira. Although this highlights one of my main grievances with the character Ziyal.

She isn't really a character that exists for her own sake. She exists solely as a shallow device to accommodate the plot. There is nothing wrong with a character serving as a plot device. But the problem is the character never developed any depth of her own. She was always either a fan girl for her father, a fan girl for Garak, or a fan girl for Kira. It didn't help that she wasn't around often and was recast several times.

Believe it or not, my favorite version of Ziyal was that one time she was played by Tracy Middendorf in "For the Cause". Her version seemed less fragile and damsely than Cyia Batten and less naive and immature than Melanie Smith. Tracy added a clever confidence to Ziyal that made her feel like her own character. She actually felt like someone who spent 6 years on a Breen labor camp (a detail the writers almost completely forgot about after she was freed) It's a shame she was replaced.
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Jonathan Billig
Wed, Mar 17, 2021, 9:32pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S2: The Schizoid Man

I think the Vulcan doctor was used on the away team instead of Pulaski so that Graves would have another young female to hit on.
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Jon from Rhode Island
Mon, Mar 15, 2021, 5:41am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S1: Litmus

On my first watch now (thanks Peacock) and the tribunal scene rubbed me the wrong way. Either the proceeding is legitimate or it’s not. If it is, Adama shutting the thing down is basically a coup d’etat against civilian rule. If it’s not, then as someone mentioned above, his junior officer can’t be guilty of perjury. Picard never would have made an MP choose between following his orders or that of a civilian tribunal. He would have gone to the brig on principle.
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Jon
Fri, Mar 12, 2021, 3:40pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Bar Association

This is a decent Ferengi episode. Not my favorite, but it works. It's also a nice insight into Rom's character. In the past his character has been really inconsistent.

Is he greedy or not?

Does he wish Quark harm or not?

Is he an idiot or not?

What are his motivations?

Who knows. But it's quite possible that Rom isn't sure either. Which is why it's nice to have an episode where he starts showing more confidence and independence. It's the right direction for his character.

I don't much care for the B-Story on this one. It seems so irrelevant because nothing is really at stake. It's just Worf not adjusting well to life on DS9. Big deal. The episode doesn't even do much to communicate his mood. We just see Worf looking aggravated (as he usually is by default) and then saying something like "I find this place unsettling". Thats a pretty low-effort attempt at communicating a character's feelings. And then the moment that's supposed to be the climax of his frustrations, where he gets into a brawl with Bashir and Obrien, we don't even get to see it. They choose not to show us that moment so that they can cut to the three of them in a holding cell. Instead of showing Worf's frustration to the audience, they'd rather just make a lame cutaway joke. That's so dumb. And then the B-Story concludes with Worf choosing to set his quarters on the Defiant... which doesn't even make sense. I realized this even the first time I saw this episode years ago.

1) Worfs whole reason for wanting quarters on the Defiant is to get solitude. He'll be by himself. But there must be SOME dedicated crew on the Defiant. It is a starship after all. Even if it's usually commanded by Sisko, it has to operate autonomously from the station to some degree.

2) Sometimes the Defiant has to be sent on longterm missions and there's always the possibility Worf won't be on those missions. So would he just not have quarters when that happens? Does he have secondary quarters on DS9?

These are the questions that go through my head when that B-Plot is "resolved".

But in conclusion, I like the episode. It's definitely not on my best of list, but it's not bad.
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Jon
Fri, Mar 12, 2021, 11:17am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Sons of Mogh

I agree with the majority on this one. I hated the ending of this episode, and the ethical dilemma of assisted suicide was already addressed better on TNG. But putting the in-universe ethics aside, I would like to look at it from a writers point of view.

This episode was just a lazy excuse to remove Kurn from the series. Basically because they needed to decide what would happen to him and couldn't be bothered to come up with any good ideas.

I pretty sure the writers wanted to consolidate Worf's background and relationships into just those that you saw on DS9 on a regular basis.

By the time Worf was brought onto DS9 he had a lot of backstory and peripheral relationships that were part of his life, but not part of his day to day life that you saw regularly on the average episode. So a lot of those elements were kinda just wasted baggage. The first thing the writers did when they brought him on was sever his ties to the Klingon home world and center his life more around the station.

Even later when the Klingons were allies again, they were a regular presence on the station at that point. And on top of that, Worf mainly interacted with them through Martok who was pretty much a main character by then. So they were still maintaining a version of Worf who was focused primarily around what was going on on DS9.

For the most part I agree with this approach. They didn't always hit it out of the park, but I agree with what they were trying to do.

But if they were gonna burn Worf's bridges, they had to do something about Kurn. He was a loose end. So they decided to just get rid of him rather than find a way to work him into the current situation. That by itself is so lazy.

And they decided to get rid of him with an episode that's really redundant (again, having covered the same subject matter in TNG) and tries to get away with this incredibly stupid ethical technicality. "He's technically not dead so it's not murder". That is just BS. Again, LAZY!

Kurn was a really cool character and if the writers were going to utilize him for the last time, they really should have given him a better sendoff. If he was gonna live, have some kind of redemption arc where Worf helps him find some noble cause. Then he can set out and earn his honor. And if he was gonna die, have him go out in some blaze of glory (as cliche as that might sound).
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Marc Jones
Thu, Feb 4, 2021, 12:38am (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S3: The Empath

An incredible episode.

Starts off so slow, so boring, but by the end my heart is in my throat, I’m on the edge of my chair, and there are tears in my eyes at the sight of McCoy. There is no other TOS episode that did this to me. Being ex-military, this choked me. You would never want to see a brother/sister in arms needlessly tortured, but your medic? The most honourable of citizens who, yes, joined the military, and knows what he signed up for, but he’s healing people, friend and foe, and he’s the one who gets it the worst? Wow. Brutal.

I totally understand why the U. K. did not air this for 30 years. With so many veterans, torture is not something abstract, and surely the worst aspect of war.

It’s no wonder TOS stands the test of time. All of us surely must want a better future for humanity? They put it right in our face just like Shatner’s armpit.
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Jonathan Billig
Thu, Dec 24, 2020, 10:07pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Aquiel

Me, 10 minutes in - "Oh, I see - they're doing an update of Laura!"

Me, 20 minutes in :"The dog's name is Maura? The dog's the killer!"
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Jon1701
Mon, Dec 7, 2020, 8:20am (UTC -5)
Re: MAND S2: Chapter 14: The Tragedy

Three out of Four

Loses a mark only because its being a bit predicable. Maybe I've watched too many films and TV shows over the year but from the moment Boba Fett told Din to put down the jetpack I knew Baby Yoda (can't call him anything else, sorry) would be stolen up on that cliff.

At least Din wasn't the gunslinger going into town to help out the locals this week 😂

Looks like next week is another prison break episode but the finale on that Star Destroyer (I assume) should be good. They have had their monies worth out of those sets - an imperial ship, base and Star Destroyer. I'm guessing most of the characters this season will team up to break out the kid of jail so I'm looking forward to the team ups.

Random thought - can an Empire on its knees still push out new classes of SD though??
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Lee Jones
Thu, Nov 12, 2020, 1:05pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: For the Cause

Was it so important for Trek fans to view the Federation as being always in the right that they could not even concede that it had been wrong about the Maquis-Cardassian conflict? Or that with this story line, "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" had adopted a conservative viewpoint by maintaining the status quo?
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Captain Jon
Thu, Nov 12, 2020, 2:04am (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S3: Forget Me Not

Excellent review, Jammer! I felt this was one of DISCO's best episodes, even giving competition to If Memory Serves (coincidence that the two best episodes of the series are about retrieving memories?).

I feel this is a continued step in the right direction for this series. Season 2 was a big improvement over Season 1 but fell back on some of its familiar tropes. But Season 3 so far as avoided that trap, even though we're only 4 episodes in. Regardless, I'm encouraged and hope that the trend continues!
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Jonathan
Wed, Sep 16, 2020, 11:17pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S2: The Crossing

I too found this episode disappointing.

1. I feel that Archer jumped way too quickly to hostility. He has shown more patience with Klingons and Andorians that actually wanted humans dead. Than he did with these beings that just wanted to survive. He made no effort to communicate diplomatically with these beings. They seemed to just be enemies to Archer right from the get go.

2. Even though the beings did have an ulterior motive, the fact that no philosophical thought was given to how the Wisp's "possession" of the crew could have just been how they engage in "cultural exchange". One again, the trap of only thinking in human terms, kind of fails in any star trek setting when it comes to new experiences.

3. The end. The fact that the episode ends in genocide of these beings with no reflection, no consequences, and no future ramifications is inexcusable. I understand this is very early in Starfleet history, before the Prime Directive, but they claimed to be beyond things like genocide.

I would actually debate this being self defense. Because Archer offered no diplomacy. The idea of trying to help them fix their ship wasn't even explored. They just jumped right to "kill them all".

TBH that alone should have justified Vulcan's concerns and ended the Enterprise's mission. But nope. They just end hundreds of lives and go on as they do. Inexcusable and a disgrace.
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Jonathan Swift
Tue, Aug 11, 2020, 12:54pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: The Drumhead

James said: "Regarding BLM I remember a few years back the police used to march in the Toronto Pride parade. Then the local BLM chapter blockaded it and refused to allow it to proceed until it agreed to a list of demands, including expelling the police and a bunch of other nutty stuff. The craven heads of local Pride surrendered, kissed BLM's boots and still ended up resigning in shame as I recall."

Amen brother. Black Lives Matter Toronto unleashed a horrendously unacceptable 25 minute sit-in (almost a full, arduous 30 minutes!), which thankfully the reputable news networks covered fairly and were careful not to sensationalize.

Those monstrous BLMers felt that People of Color within the gay community were not being represented. They felt that that police officers joining the parades in plainclothes, costumes or policing from the sidelines was absolutely okay, but not big police floats, police cruisers and not uniformed officers in the marches themselves. They felt this, they said, because Pride is about inclusivity and community, yet many older LGBT members, because of violent attacks in the past by more homophobic police forces, continue to feel actively threatened / worried when they see an officer. On behalf of those people, BLM unfairly wished that on this one special day a year, a safe, welcoming environment could be created.

BLM Toronto also issued 8 other outrageous, monomaniacal demands. These asked for more inclusive hiring of black transgender people, indigenous Native Indian folks and other vulnerable communities, as well as community support, increased space and more funding for Pride events run by LGBT communities. These are devilish, civilization-toppling demands that should rightfully be shot down by any sensible-thinking person.

Unfortunately Toronto Pride caved in to these satanic demands, and the following year held a democratic vote on these demands and agreed to uphold them! Ghastly! What a perversion of the electoral system!

The Toronto Police - unsurprisingly headed by a black chief - even agreed to these demands himself. Making a choice evocative of that tyrant Jean Luc Picard, he kowtowed to these terrorist demands, explicitly citing his belief that withdrawing from the Parade and giving things a year or two to breathe, would help faster foster better relations between the police and minorities, would demonstrate a more positive relationship between the gay and black community and the police, and would bring the groups together in the near future. Like that idiot Picard, this chief believed he was taking a humble, long view, when in actuality he was demonstrating weakness and softness before the petulant horde.

I know some say the founder of Pride, Gary Kinsman, famously said that in this incident, “The Black Lives Matter contingent carried with it the spirit of Stonewall and the activist roots of Pride,” but he is clearly an idiot.

Others will claim that black protest has historically always been unfairly viewed as antagonistic, angry, hostile and anti-institutional. That when black people assert either rights or wishes, these simple requests quickly become deemed an inconvenient and militant attack by "uppity", "whiny", "complainers". But these are different times. People of all races and backgrounds will surely, rightfully, come to the conclusion that only a mentally deranged black homosexual would feel ill at ease when in a Pride March alongside rolling police cars and loomed over by big police floats. And why would should we take policy demands from the mentally deranged?
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Jonathan Swift
Tue, Aug 11, 2020, 11:23am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: The Drumhead

Amen, brothers.

An episode named after one of the British Empire's practices, and about old Federation establishment figures falling prey to bigotry and suspecting a Klington and a quarter-blood Romulan of terrorism, in a franchise started by a guy whose wife literally said he was a communist and partial to Chinese-style Maoism (https://mix979fm.com/ten-things-you-didnt-know-star-trek-creator-gene-roddenberry/), is totally about our current historical moment, where innocent whites are persecuted by the powerful Black Lives Matters Hegemon, which uses its tremendous military might and political strength to destroy the lives of innocent whites who are accused of no crime greater than wrong-thought.

Judging from the reliable sources where I get my news (objective news, free from data mining, and the social media brainwashing algorithms employed by radical left corporations), it is clear to me that we are on a slippery slope toward the criminalization of free thinkers - perhaps even the white race itself - if we don't trod too carefully.

Indeed, though many today are preoccupied with issues like coronavirus (which statistically primarily affects white workers), it is clear that 2020's key issue is cancel culture, and how it is employed - genocidally employed, some might say - by powerful black leaders to silence innocent whites. And so we must be vigilant. We must be vigilant and keep our eyes peeled for the blacks, commies and powerful radicals. For as Martin Niemöller said decades ago: "first they came for the whites, and I did not speak. And then they came for more whites, and again I didn't speak. Because they didn't let me speak...because of cancel culture."

Make no mistake. We have given these devilish BLM-types all they have asked for. Despite their inherent racism (only a fool would read "Black Lives Matter" as anything but a racist slogan), and despite the fact that society is fairer now than its ever been, we have bent to their will and en-acted countless political policies and structural changes which have dramatically changed society. And yet they continue to persecute the innocent white man, who wants nothing more than to live in peace without fear of slander or violence.

And it is not a rational violence, of the type we see and celebrate when practiced by our protesting white brothers in the streets today in France, or Lebanon or Beijing, or Belarus. No, it is an irrational, disorganized violence. The unthinking violence of the jungle. Of the animal.

I know MLK sympathized with rioters and called violence the language of the unheard, and said “Let us say boldly that if the violations of law by the white man over the years were calculated and compared with the law-breaking of a few days of riots, the hardened criminal would be the white man.”

But were he alive today, MLK would be aghast at what civil rights discourse has become. Roddenberry himself would no doubt insert a BLM alien into Trek, for he would recognize that there is no greater threat to the Federation than a black man taking the knee.
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Jon
Wed, Jul 22, 2020, 8:18am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S1: The Last Outpost

I believe the extreme close up of the Ferengi on the view screen was their attempt to intimidate. Doesn't Troi say something about the image being distorted? It is a surprise when we see that they are actually tiny little creatures.
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Jon
Mon, Jul 20, 2020, 2:10pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S1: The Naked Now

Some claim this episode proves that Tasha is straight.

Wrong!

Instead of hooking up with an actual human, male or female, she essentially chooses the world's largest vibrating dildo.
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Jonathan Hardy
Tue, Jun 16, 2020, 2:18pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: The Best of Both Worlds, Part II

I am doing my own rewatch of TNG, having not seen it since I was a young child, and I think BoBW stands as the episode in which TNG replaces TOS as the bedrock of Star Trek. Before this, there may never have been any other Star Trek shows or movies, and if there were, they could have been set at any time period, but after this, it nailed the 24th century as the true home of Star Trek.

With that said, I would have written part II and resolved the problem differently. When the Enterprise fires its secret weapon, it would have worked, or at least started to. It would have began ripping slowly through the cube. The Borg's response would have been retreat. Instead of using Picard's knowledge of the plan to completely defend against it, we say they were unable to, but knowing it would destroy them they were prepared to run away. The Enterprise would still be unable to give chase, but it resolves the problem of why not just destroy/assimilate the Enterprise?

Next, the battle of Wolf 359 would still be a crushing Borg victory; however, the cube wouldn't be seemingly impervious, rather it would take yet more damage, and when we see it approaching Earth it would be very clearly damaged. I think this would lessen the bump between this battle and First Contact. I much prefer the idea that the Borg are merely incredibly strong, than entirely invulnerable here.

So then, when the Enterprise goes to rescue Picard, it makes sense they are more vulnerable and less able to manhandle the Enterprise and the shuttle could fly in through a damaged section. Then later, the "sleep" command doesn't put the cube into autodestruct; rather, it allows an away team to beam aboard. Guided by Picard's knowledge they could plant explosives on a key system, like a warp core or something and get away while Picard and Data keep them asleep and prevent them from deactivating the bombs.

There's probably some other plot hole this would create, or I didn't think of, and it's only small minutia that keeps this from being perfect, and even still, in its current state, it's the peak of Star Trek so far. I'd say it's also peak Borg. Later Borg are ruined by the humanity of the Queen.
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Jon
Fri, May 15, 2020, 7:28pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Time's Arrow, Part II

An actor friend who has made a 30 year career playing Clemens on stage, screen and audio books, says this portrayal makes the man too argumentative and annoying. I suppose it's in the writing as well as the actor doing the role.
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Jon
Wed, May 13, 2020, 9:14pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: The Next Phase

The the person wondering why Ro wasn't kept as a regular character -
Ro was originally intended to be a regular on DS9.
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Jon
Mon, May 11, 2020, 9:33pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Imaginary Friend

Trivia - the actress who played Isabella was later seen as Tommy's girlfriend on Third Rock From the Sun.
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Jon
Fri, May 8, 2020, 6:44pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Cost of Living

From her first episode, people have been describing Lwaxana as "The Auntie mame of Star Trek." Here', she actually becomes Auntie Mame to Alexander.
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Jon
Wed, Apr 29, 2020, 9:46pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Violations

No mention of Worf's mandatory deadpan one-liner?

"Klingons do not like to be probed."
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Jon
Mon, Apr 27, 2020, 9:22am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: A Matter of Time

Clearly, the authors of some of the more recent comments need to google "Max Headroom".

Better yet, search YouTube.
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Jon
Wed, Apr 15, 2020, 9:23pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: Redemption, Part I

Let me just say that Gwyneth Walsh as B'etor, a.k.a. the Sister with the Cleavage, is super hot!
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