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Marg
Thu, Mar 5, 2020, 6:13pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Nepenthe

Tissues...lots of tissues. Wallowing in nostalgia.
Wonderful.
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Marg
Fri, Feb 28, 2020, 3:55pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: The Impossible Box

First view:
Like many above, (Tim C and others), I am disappointed with how the Raffi scene is presented as somehow comic. Her relapse was sadly inevitable after her son's rejection, but the drunken display is insultingly blatant. We don't need public display of bottle and vape to discern her distress. More subtly, the return to her old messy ponytail hairstyle is enough, along with, say, evidence of hangover.
To be honest, the scene angers me in its carelessness.

*How the frak does Agnes get away with murdering Maddox? As @Quinalla asks, "Why the hell hasn't anybody consulted the EMH...?" No kidding!

*At the risk of sounding like a 10 year old, the scene of Agnes and Rios was icky. Surely the swashbuckler Rios doesn't suddenly talk about feelings? Or is that the EMH, which is even ickier.

*I loved the shots of little Soji's big feet. Reminds me of Firefly's Summer.

@Peter G on joy as the core of ST--"the joy of discovery..." Thank you for the reminder. And @William B (nice to read you again)--"the joy of working through a problem together" is what I love about ST. I hope we will see some of this on PIC once this ragtag crew gets their act together.
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Marg
Fri, Feb 28, 2020, 3:02pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Stardust City Rag

2nd view:
After thinking about Seven killing Bjayzl and the ideas of mercy and revenge, it occurs to me that the episode is carefully structured. The gruesome opening of the mutilation of Icheb has to be horrific enough to justify Seven's revenge. Bjayzl's sadistic physical torment becomes Seven's emotional torment. Seven is forced not only to mercy-kill Icheb, her "child," but also to realize Bjayzl tricked her into an intimate relationship, which is marked by Bjayzl's use of "Annika." Seven has no alternative in this lawless world but to kill Jay and prevent further ex-B victims. Seven shows mercy in vaporizing Jay rather than, say, perform a bit of vivisection...

The removal of Icheb's eye highlights a visual motif of eyes. The opening credits features iris-like images. Seven's ocular piece and Picard's eye patch add to this. The theme, of course, is conducive to ideas of seeing, understanding, search of truth, secrets.
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Marg
Fri, Feb 21, 2020, 3:12pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Stardust City Rag

Wow, what an emotional episode.
"tears for Icheb" indeed.
Elnor doesn't get a FreeCloud tourist digital character...funny.
Rafaella, that was a rough "reunion" with your son. I hope you keep it together. He'll come around by the end of the series.
@Norvo re Sirtis look alike: me too—couldn't stop thinking about Troi.
(Troi, where are you? Maybe she's a Ranger with Seven...heh, that'd be cool.)

Seven, please don't go! Or, take me with you... I want to be a Ranger.
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Marg
Wed, Feb 19, 2020, 4:17pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Absolute Candor

@ Tim C Thanks for the heads up and info on the novel. The more I read, including this forum, the more I appreciate ST and all its complexities.
There is a relevant ST: Short Trek called "Children of Mars."
And @Tim C: "way too young a show for me to judge...cast is strong...premise so far interesting...Picard dealing with consequences of failure..." Yes. We're only four episodes in. Cripes, it took TNG (and VOY) three seasons to gain traction.

@ Filip: "I honestly hope Narek will turn out to be conflicted about this whole business..." I agree and predict Narek will ultimately defend or even save Soji while Rizzo gets bumped off, hopefully sooner than later.

Re TNG "snuggles" and PIC pace: for me, the most comforting aspect of the episodic format of TNG was the crew working as a team to solve the problem of the week in a positive and exciting way. Where the TNG crew was up and running, PIC, as a serial, opens in the early stages of building a team, which will have to learn to work together. The process needs time. I like this slow "set-up" and just plain love being with Picard in the ST universe. It's FUN.

@Ovanpreus: I appreciate your post. I have long relied on Jammer's reviews and discussion to help me think about any given ST episode. For past series, the commentary has been respectful, engaging, and always intelligent. (I miss you, William B.) Unfortunately, the atmosphere of this PIC forum is becoming unpleasant, which is a shame because here we have a place (thanks to Jammer) to talk about the important 50+ year cultural phenomenon that is Star Trek. Let's respect the opportunity.
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Marg
Fri, Feb 14, 2020, 3:44pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Absolute Candor

Rios's ship is called "La Sirena," the mermaid.
Thank you!
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Marg
Thu, Feb 13, 2020, 4:00pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Absolute Candor

Frakes, Romulan nun assassins, Elnor wuxia, SEVEN!!!!
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Marg
Wed, Feb 12, 2020, 4:34pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: The End Is the Beginning

Thanks for the review, Jammer. I agree that Picard should have taken Laris, Zhaban, and #1 Pitbull with him!

Second viewing careful listening:
Music—diverse genres are used to "flavor" scenes: opera introduces the scene with Dr. Agnes and Commodore Oh. In contrast, the Mississippi Delta blues type music introducing the scene of Rios in his quarters is very reminiscent of Robert Johnson's work, which is an interesting pairing with the Miguel de Unamuno book. In this scene, the EMH, while iterating Picard's CV, mentions "on the side of angels" and "Sunday school." Rios may be the focal point for philosophical / ethical conflicts between reason and faith.

@Marg "Am I reading correctly that the actor also plays the EMH?" On second watch, definitely the same actor. That's weird.
@Marg "Does Rios' ship have a name?" Rios was the XO of the heavy cruiser "ibn Majid," which was "erased from Star Fleet records." That ship was named for Ahmad ibn Majid, a 15th-C Arab navigator / cartographer. Very Cool reference, but I'm not sure if we are on board this ship at the end of the ep.
I love how the series is weaving in ST and real human history.
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Marg
Fri, Feb 7, 2020, 4:14pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: The End Is the Beginning

The scene in which Raffi berates Picard is uncomfortable but highlights Picard's arrogance, a characteristic that Q criticized throughout TNG and kept Picard isolated from his Enterprise crew.
Nice touch that Raffi calls Picard "J.L."—it signals a different relationship between Picard's post-TNG crew/staff members. I guess she was his No.1? Love Raffi's desert house.
Agnes is fun: "Who are you, lady?"
I'll hold judgement on Rios—a bit too over the top for me in this ep. But thank you, @Trent, for explaining the book. The struggle with faith gets my attention. Am I reading correctly that the actor also plays the EMH? Does Rios' ship have a name?

@Drea: "Star Trek: Firefly" Huh. I've been thinking about Firefly lately.
(The "ping-ping" sound of the Romulan handgun reminds me of a Mass Effect weapon, I think the Scorpion.)
I'm very much enjoying the series so far.
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Marg
Thu, Feb 6, 2020, 5:24pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

@Late to the Party Girl: "Call me crazy, but to help manage stress I watch the old Star Trek series."
Me too! When I need some calming, I put on TNG in the background while puttering with house stuff.
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Marg
Thu, Feb 6, 2020, 5:20pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Maps and Legends

Gorn Hegemony! I want to see this.
I love a good Seven Samurai-build-a-team scenario. But to drop "Riker, Worf, LaForge" with no delivery is cruel! I hope Picard takes Laris along.
Such strong, interesting female characters! I look forward to learning more about Raffi.
I agree with Jammer and many of you above about the use of the f-word in Star Trek. I'm no prude, but vulgarity distracts me from the ST setting.
Solid episode. Stunning cinematography and set design. I love the details such as the golds of the chateau and Picard's reflection in the clock face.
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Marg
Thu, Jan 30, 2020, 9:20pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

After reading through the comments:
@Jon Smith: "contemplative"
Yes, that's the word I needed. I, too, have missed Data and Picard. We so need this now.
@Jor-El and Jason R: re Data aging.
Someone mentioned Data has an aging program. Doesn't Data have a striking grey streak in "All Good Things"?
@Gerontius: re Picard "puffed out"
My comment mentioned that, too! And I also thought about Kirk. He would have toughed it out!

On science fiction and politics: as a long time Philip K. Dick fan, my understanding is that the best SF extrapolates current issues. As stated above, TOS dealt with the Vietnam War in at least 3 episodes. ST:P will surely address issues of immigration, systemic racism, and corrupt government, and may do so in a disturbing manner--while pointing to a positive Roddenberrian solution. After all, Picard is back!
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Marg
Thu, Jan 30, 2020, 5:33pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Long time fan of Jammer's reviews and reader of the comment section. First submission of my own response. I've read the review but not yet the comments so to avoid influence. But I will certainly read all carefully.

The first episode of ST: Picard is beautiful. The opening brought tears—the stunning space view, the Enterprise, Data and Picard. The poker game is a nice bridge from "All Good Things." Immediately I felt relief: the production team members care, know what they are doing, and have the funds to do it well.
The pace is refreshingly measured. I love the shots of Picard's aged, worn face, showing his emotional and physical vulnerability after years of loss and despair. We are given time to experience the various landscapes--the idyllic rural Chateau Picard, cutting to the Bladerunner / Mass Effect–esque cityscape of Boston.
The visual, futuristic details are exciting! Little things like the glasses forced on Dahj, her Minority Report view screen, the interviewer's earrings, the hovering camera, and Picard's weird tie knot all make this a very interesting world. Yet, these whimsical technical innovations are set against human frailty. It's impossible to ignore that Picard had trouble climbing the stairs and could not help Dahj battle the Romulan attackers.
The ghost of Lal is certainly in the background. Like her, poor Dahj's synth existence begins and ends in one episode. I hope Dahj's sister is as intriguing.
Other details: I chuckled to see that Number One is so obviously in tact. The future promises all good things for dogs. I enjoy the callbacks of Earl Grey (decaf!), Capt. Picard Day, and the name Maddox. Ahh, we are home again.
I look forward the next episode.
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Margaret
Mon, Jan 7, 2019, 2:51am (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S4: These Are the Voyages...

When I was in medical school my two roommates were watching Enterprise and enjoyed it. I caught one or two episodes and thought it was silly. 15 years later I decided to give it a go and just finished the whole series. Given all the amazing comments here I only want to say a few things:

Thank you Jammers for a great review site that I randomly happened upon after that episode where Porthos was sick and I essentially googled ‘why is this so bad’. In general I think you’re spot on, and the comments section on this blog is so much better behaved than most of the internet.

Yes this final episode is abysmal. Should’ve ended it with the one before. I’m struck with thinking that trek is suffering under the weight of its own success. Everything has to follow cannon, the only races encountered need to be ones we’ve seen, everything has to call back to the ‘successful’ treks (TOS and TNG). DISC is suffering the same problems. Until trek takes risks again (and not just oh now we’re ‘gritty’) but real newness, I’m not sure it’ll ever recapture that magic of my childhood.

And most importantly: everyone who loves DS9 really should do themselves a favor and watch all of Babylon 5 (and read the story of how DS9 ripped them off). If Jammers hasn’t seen it you should give it a shot. A little rough at the beginning but turns into the most Shakespearean and fascinating sci-fi show.
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