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Mon, Feb 5, 2018, 3:10pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S5: Looking for Par'mach in All the Wrong Places

Opening quote was correct the first time - "this is ridiculous".
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Sat, Nov 4, 2017, 8:35pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Majority Rule

I liked this episode, but t reminded me of the better episodes of "Sliders" which often used this sort of social satire on alterate dimension Earths. In fact one episode, "Dead Man Sliding", had a similar plot: "Quinn is mistakenly arrested, tried, convicted and sentenced to death in a Hollywood where TV viewers determine the sentence and executions are televised live."
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Mon, May 29, 2017, 12:50pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: The Motion Picture

The best Trek movie by a mile

It's certainly long overdue for a cultural reappraisal - having recently rewatched the whole Trek film series, the others - even the beloved Wrath of Khan - all fail to even approach the heights of this ambitious, thought-provoking, and deeply psychedelic
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KB Murohy
Mon, Jul 11, 2016, 3:35pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S4: Kir'Shara

This trilogy offers perhaps the best tribute to Roddenberry's vision that vast, positive societal changes can happen in a short time. By showing the "anti ST" Vulcans in the earlier parts of enterprise, we can see the effect of what is called a "significant emotional event" on a society.

I find it plausible that that the high command as pictured in Error could move logically down this path because of the way Spock behaves in the Mirror universe.

I don't know the backstage bickering or rights of whether this trilogy was planned from the start. It's immaterial because this trilogy puts the work of previous episodes in harmony. And it offers a hopeful message that determined, relatively nonviolent activists can move a society toward more skillful methods of governing.
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Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 5:16pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S3: Similitude

TV rarely makes me cry. When it does, I honor the work of those who created it.

The DNA doesn't include memories argument has an answer--epigenetics. Relatively new data show that PTSD can be transmitted from parents. Our DNA and bodies are far more plastic and adaptable than our current science dreams of...

Our current cloning technology doesn't do this but his do we know it can't?

In addition to honoring stories that spontaneously cause me to laugh or cry, I also honor those that invite vigorous debate. Therefore, this one is 4.
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Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 3:12pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S3: North Star

I enjoyed this episode a lot. Some points:

Archer, despite being on mission to save earth, is doing intensive scanning looking for Xindi. Therefore, I imagine he felt that he could afford two days to investigate humans in the Expanse!

Given the time frame and cultures he found, it is unsurprising he encountered "routine" western experiences. And the cultures are explicable because of the whole slave/slave revolt/burn everything that enslaved us events that occurred. A key comment was "they abducted the wrong people." I would imagine that just surviving on this particular planet would be very challenging and we have to remember that life expectancy has a lot to do with technological and social innovation.

It would have been nice to have discussed the slave/indigenous issues that existed in mid 19th century US but that pulls the plot away from the basic conflict that exists in this planet today.

I thought the horse thing was funny.

I liked not having edges tied up and that Archer makes no promises because he knows that if he fails his larger mission, no ships will come for these people. What he does do is to leave materials and ideas that can help these cultures move forward constructively.

It would have been nice to find other Skagorans later on their home world or on colonies to learn more about them.

And, I imagine that given how isolated some parts of West were, that some alien abductions could happen without a pattern being evident.

Another episode that allows me to think about possible sequels--this always moves it to 3 stars
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Tue, Jun 21, 2016, 12:05pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S2: Carbon Creek

My view of quality entertainment is if the story continues to live in my imagination. From the first time I saw this episode, it has been with me... all the what ifs! My background is in anthropology so I find this fascinating. Also, it demonstrate that Vulcans can improvise and adapt, something they do not always demonstrate. I think Jolene Blalock does excellent job differentiating the characters. Finally, her back story allows us to understand how she so successfully integrated on Enterprise, which is the point of the dinner party...
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Thu, Jun 16, 2016, 8:55pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S1: Fortunate Son

I'm enjoying ENT on my second pass. I like the slower pacing and the figure it out as we go along approach. On the Archer/Merryweather conversation, I probably wouldn't have made the snarky "Any other..." comment but it clearly played well with Merryweather; he obviously felt heard.

On the other hand, Archer should have had that whiskey with the freighter captain; that was a missed opportunity.

And on a side note, the whole dozens of posts about Islam, political correctness, terrorism, liberal to fascist continuum offers two thoughts. First, it explains why I avoid reading comment streams on Facebook. Second, it shows the relevance of this program and Star Trek to"real life." We don't operate under a "prime directive" and, if we did, we would have let genocide and oppression exist in other countries. The UN Charter and international law have some jurisdiction but very few teeth. Watching ENT offers many opportunities to consider how we, as a species, might actually collaborate enough to survive to become space faring...
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Mon, Jun 13, 2016, 4:25pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: The Void

So the parable of stone soup works in the Delta Quadrant! I'm pleased.

Also, although I didn't think Shattered was a particularly coherent episode, it sets this one up nicely. I don't think I entirely realized that Voyager was Captain Janeway's first command until I saw Shattered. Her inconsistency, especially in the first three years then becomes more explicable.

She has been a member of Starfleet all her adult life both as a scientist and a command officer but the situation Voyager faces cannot be trained for because only command experience offers the right training ground.

Captain Picard had a much longer history in the captain's chair when we join him at FarPoint. So Janeway has to operate initially in a vacuum with no trusted peers or mentors to rely upon. Managers, like teachers and doctors, have to gain their experience using live subjects. And whenever we gain skills, they are forged on anvils of failures. I'm not certain that Captain Picard would have destroyed the Caretaker's Array without finding a way home for his crew first. Janeway was thrown off balance by loss of her crew and it clearly affected her judgment.

An interesting counterpoint to this episode are ENT episodes in season 3 where the space is so hard on the ships. Captain Archer operates without a federation charter and his experiences and choices ultimately influence the charter that Voyager lives under.
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Sat, Jun 11, 2016, 1:22pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Imperfection

As someone who has been dealing with illness, death, and dying of family members for most of my life, I find this episode poignant and true rather than cliched. The estimated success rate of these Icheb's proposal is far higher than many treatments take for granted today. What Seven's character offers us is a directness and freshness that we often fail to see in real life.

We "do" conversations about illness, infirmity, death, and dying very poorly in our culture and this fact was even more the case when this episode was first broadcast. When fiction offers us a way to think about our real lives and to ponder how we might play out that script, then it moves from entertainment to parable. This episode achieved this level for me and I've added it to the short list of Trek episodes that I hold in my heart and review when counting sheep fails to keep nightmares at bay.
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Wed, Jun 8, 2016, 12:13am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Riddles

I found this episode touching especially because of Seven's insight that helps Nelix help Tuvoc. When we accept people where they are, everything works better. I think that Nelix did change as a result of Mortal Coil and that change has quietly been acted out since then. He is really annoying only with Tuvoc and I think it might have been a passive/aggressive response to Tuvok's behavior towards him. Finally, I think the last scene was esquistely and beautifully subtle. An episode I look forward to watching again.
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Sun, Jun 5, 2016, 11:41am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: The Fight

I watched this two days after Ali died. Without that prompt, I probably would have fast forwarded through the fight scenes because I'm definitely not into boxing. I am, though, a huge admirer of Ali and he fought through his fears on behalf of himself and his people.

Chakoty was clearly terrified by the vision that he would become crazy like his grandfather. I understand this because I remember becoming repulsed by characteristics of elders as a child accompanied by flashes of insight that those characteristics were part of me. As an adult, that insight has helped me accept what I might otherwise have rejected in myself.

Despite his anthropologist father, I don't get the impression that Chakoty had a good childhood and I think that, like many Trek characters, he chose Star Fleet as an honorable way to escape home (Spock, Ro, Tasha). I think the writers have done a terrible job with his character because they did not have a consistent idea of his background.

But I found the episode sufficiently evocative of my childhood conflicts to be watchable.
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KB Murphy
Mon, May 30, 2016, 3:27pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Night

I'm enjoying these reviews while watching the show for the first time since it aired (I don't think I saw most of seasons 4-7 so I know they get home but don't remember how).

I have lived with people suffering depression most of my life and I found Janeway's actions consistent with my experience. The point about depression is that people act atypically. The lack of ship's counselor has been a major plot hole that could have been used throughout the series. Most ships would have people who might be interested in the role and who could "go to school" in the holodeck to develop their skills.

In fact, the whole ship's counselor ethos in TNG era shows always bothered me because it clearly showed the idea that they were still dividing health care into mind and body elements. The new fields of study like neuroscience and epigenetics are showing us that one cannot view human health as a set of silos.

The doctor in ENT offers hints of the way medicine may be practiced in our future.

At any rate, I found Janeway's depression consistent with the weaknesses she has displayed in the past. I thought the writers did a reset with Tuvoc and Chakoty's relationship. Now, as Jammer often points out, it will be interesting to see if that change persists. I do think that the "mutiny" may help the captain accept that she cannot redeem her past actions and that she is accepted--warts and all--by her crew--that she is "not alone" (as she commented in Scorpion).
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Sat, Dec 19, 2015, 5:17pm (UTC -5)
Re: Trailer: Star Trek Beyond

This trailer makes this movie look like absolute and complete trash. I will not be seeing this in the theatres. Im sure ill be able to download it for free within a few days and even then well see if I waste my time with it.
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Sat, May 18, 2013, 8:19pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

I thought, as in the first movie, that the characters were really solid and well cast. I enjoyed the humor. But overall, the plot was trash. Pure trash. This movie was an abomination on the Khan character. Cumberbatch overacted in every possible way and it became laughable. And Spock yelling out "Khhhhannn!" Jesus Christ what more can I say. It was like a fanboy wrote this movie and thought "Hey wouldnt it be hiliarious if we kill off Kirk instead of Spock and Spock yells Khan!??"

I will say I did like the reference to Section 31, and i loved how Praxas was blowed all up.
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Fri, Apr 26, 2013, 6:52pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: The Best of Both Worlds, Part II

I also saw this in the theatres and I was so disgusted they decided to show the documentary before the show. I took my girlfriend who has only heard my hype and had no idea what a Star Trek was and the entire two parter was spoiled for her before it even started. Every single part was spoiled. What a crock.

As for the show, I agree with Patrick in that it was well done! The remastering was excellent and the episode doesnt seem all that dated for being 25 years old.

It was mentioned in the documentary that Micheal Miller quit the show without writing a second part. I had read years ago that there were a lot of head games being played between the writers, producers, actors and the media as to not ruin the ending of this two parter. They wanted people to believe this could be the end of Picard. So I actually think everything was planned out from the beginning to the end.
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Wed, Dec 5, 2012, 12:23pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S2: Carbon Creek

This is an edit to my previous post:
My first Trek episode was, as aired, "The Man Trap." Excuse my error.
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Wed, Dec 5, 2012, 12:16pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S2: Carbon Creek

I am Yanks' partner in crime on the Velcro research. Not sure if the reviewer was simply having a bad day, but this was one of the plethora of holes and most curious opinions in the above review.

I watched WNMHGB at the age of 11 when it first aired and have watched every first run Trek episode since. No 'ears', but I am somewhat of a Trek buff.

Jolene Blalock was one of, if not the best actor of the series. I was often impressed by her subtlety of expression as she played the Vulcan persona. Her glance would speak volumes. Her timing of a slightly raised eyebrow, when used, was inspired. Her capture of the character was apparent from her first scene in "Broken Bow" - not even taking the three or four years Nimoy took to establish Spock. Could be Nimoy's 'Spock' was her inspiration.

T'Pol's interest in human culture should not be in question with someone who had a clue about the character, especially her emotional response to jazz.

At the conclusion of "Carbon Creek" I 'shouted,' "Now THAT'S Trek!" The handbag was an emotional touch of pure Trek gold. This Trek fan was most pleased. The episode is easily in my top ten from all of Trek productions.

As my friend alluded, the reviewer appeared to be going for self aggrandizement rather than showing an understanding of what most fans express as important to a good Trek story. There was, indeed, a total failure with the Velcro remarks.
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Wed, Apr 25, 2012, 2:18am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: The First Duty

What disturbed me the most is that Josh and Wesley went to Calgary. They should have been expelled for going to that crap hole of a city of begin with!
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Wed, Jun 30, 2010, 2:04am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: What You Leave Behind

Nothing will ever in a million years compare to the babylon 5 finale. Not this, not Lost, not TNG...nothing.

This episode would have been so much better without the Dukat/Winn nonsense.
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Fri, Mar 20, 2009, 8:32am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Daybreak, Part 1

One more thing too add building on some earlier points. Who cares if all our questions are not answered. Life is a series of mostly unanswered questions so why do we always assume that our television programs need spoon-feed us every bit. Yes, it's true that we dont watch TV to be kept guessing without a payoff but in the BSG context it works.

It is a very real possibility that Kara might never know who if her dad is/was the mystery Daniel. So what? It would work better for the story that the question went unanswered than to cram it into a sequence with only 2 hours left to go. If she never learns the truth, it works for the show, and it works for us because we can relate.

I just used the Kara/Danial as one example to illustrate my ultimate point which I'll get to shortly. When Ellen was revealed as the fifth cylon, people were disappointed and others were complacent. I thought, okay now we can move on. In all honesty, would anyone have felt better about the show if a principal character or an unknown was outed? Would anyone have felt worse? I doubt it. Does having an answer to these questions deepen our appreciation of battlestar galactica? No, I dont think it does.

Ultimately, thats the point. Galactica has become so rich with character, plot, mythology, and universe that at the end of the day, being given answers to every plot thread doesnt change the way we think about the show. If this were a poorer program, it might very well be the case. But the fact that the show is so strong on its own merits means that it can be excused for excluding information from both its characters and its audience without our appreciation diminishing in the slightest.
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Fri, Mar 20, 2009, 6:51am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Daybreak, Part 1

Jammer, I've been reading your reviews for a long time and I've never responded. I do so today only because this 1st act brought up so many emotions that, like you've mentioned, come from the depth these characters have been given over the past 6 years.

There were two in particular that you didnt mention in your review (because there was no real reason truthfully) but stood out powerfully to me.

The first was Doc Cottle's move to cross the line. Clearly, Roslin's moment was the core of the scene, but Cottle has been in many ways the heart of the Galactica (or one of them). A bit old, a bit used up, and a bit crusty but still dependable, honorable, and moral. Its small moments like those that will make me miss this program.

Second was Athena's response to the planned mission. She will likely come around tonight and play a key role but in some ways I hope she doesnt. Not because I dont like her, I do very much, but because her reaction to losing her daughter to the very real prospect of a madman who intends to dissect her may well be the most honest and accurate response of anyone in the episode. Helo showed us both his humanity (in reaching out to Tyrol) and his unending optimism (in his bittersweet excitment at the chance to rescue Hera). But Athena's insight that her daughter is likely chopped up, or soon to be chopped up might actually be the most logical despite the pain, horror, outrage, and cynicism brought on by Hera's loss.

BSG once again proves it has an understanding of humanity, its motives, and its responses that cuts deep to the core of who we are.

@Ryan - well done mate, it hadnt even occurred to me that Baltar's narcissism could be brought on by his more or less "isolation" from his world. It was not initially how I read that scence but your comment was truly thought provoking.
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Tue, Dec 30, 2008, 6:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Escape Velocity

Jammer makes money from this site, it may not be much, but he does get money.

Personally If I were one of the suckers who chipped in money to get TNG DVD's for Jammer, id be pissed on that front.
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Tue, Oct 28, 2008, 5:43pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Six of One

Do some god damn reviews!!!

How about those TNG reviews that people paid out of their own pocket to buy you the DVD's so you could review them???

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Thu, Jun 19, 2008, 1:49pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: He That Believeth in Me

"That's exactly why I prefer shows like DS9 and Babylon 5 to BSG. As good as BSG is, it's extremely bleak, and the writers have the tendency to go for the most shocking thing possible in most situations. BSG is compulsive viewing, but it has no lightness - DS9 and B5 achieved great things and had fantastic arcs and character work, but there was always some balance - moments of humour and warmth, and a sense that the characters were normal, reasonable people who you could rely on and get on with. The most we get of this on BSG is the Adama/Roslin relationship. This isn't a criticism of BSG as such, as obviously it's supposed to be like this, it's just that the DS9/B5 style is more to my taste.

BSG is essentially a bleak, pessimistic study of a collapsed society and its damaged members, with occasional moments of hope. Everyone on the show behaves erratically and only looks out for themselves or their own agenda - it's "every man for himself". Characters frequently change motivations and alliances, betrayals and deception are regular, and trust is a complete non-entity - would you trust anyone on BSG? They all just follow their own agenda or have their own ulterior motives. Of course, this all makes great drama, but at the end of the day, I'd rather work with Sisko and co or Sheridan and crew than be part of the human hell that is Galactica... "

I agree 100% with this post. There cant be anything on this show that isnt damaged or happy. I was so hoping that the mid season break this year would be the crew finding earth and being overjoyed about it. But instead [...]. Its like they cant resist but to be negative.
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