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Paul M.
Sun, Feb 17, 2019, 2:58pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Saints of Imperfection

I like you Dave, but lay off with canon please. It's... embarrassing. And the domain of 7-year olds.
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Paul M.
Sun, Feb 17, 2019, 1:24pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Saints of Imperfection

Dave, I can't believe Optimus Prime died so easily in 1986 movie after having been practically impervious throughout the animated series! Also, did you notice that Jon Snow doesn't look like Arya when the books canonically state they look very much alike! So disrespectful to canon!

...

And to my childhood! My precious childhood!
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Paul M.
Sun, Feb 17, 2019, 10:16am (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Saints of Imperfection

@MadManMUC: "Put this in contrast to 'Chain of Command'"

But why don't we put this in contrast with, say, Code of Honor, Justice, Angel One, When the Bough Breaks, The Outrageous Okona, The Royale, Manhunt, Shades of Gray, Menage a Troi, Devil's Due, The Outcast, Cost of Living, Aquiel, Suspicions, Liaisons, Dark Page, Sub Rosa, Genesis, and countless other TNG episodes that could best be described as utter schlock?

Don't get me wrong, I love TNG, I grew up on it, but when will we finally stop pretending that Star Trek was something that it wasn't? You can't cherry-pick Trek's very best and pretend all those dozens of misses never happened, and contrast that with Discovery.

Personally, I am of the opinion that Discovery is the best Trek show since Deep Space Nine... which isn't saying much because I really dislike both Voyager and Enterprise. Up till now, DIS isn't on the level of DS9 or prime TNG (Seasons 3-6); it doesn't even try reaching those heights as it seems to willingly abandon the more symbolic and mythological aspects of Trek (Calypso excluded: that short was phenomenal).

But!... I find it quite enjoyable for what it is: a razzle-dazzle action-adventure show with great special effects, engaging-enough story, and some very solid performances as well as characters. Say what you will, but after 20 episodes, I'd take Pike, Burnham, Saru, Tilly, and Stamets over Archer, T'Pol, Hoshi or Mayweather any day. And when we get really down to it, where were Sulu, Chekov, Uhura, Tasha, Troi, or Crusher 20 episodes in (or even much more than 20 episodes in?)

And the less we talk about The Toilet Humor Show that is being heralded as the Second Coming of Jesus Trek Christ, the better...
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Paul
Fri, Feb 15, 2019, 10:38am (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S2: A Happy Refrain

Lovely little episode. One I’d show my wife (and she’s not into Trek or sci fi).

It was very rich - full orchestra, use of so many people for the concert, effects, water in the bridge... it wen to great lengths and you felt it.

There were very many Orville-flies-through-space stings which felt like filler. We were never told where they were headed or their mission. Just arrive at a star and gather data.

And the moustache was the unfunniest thing ever.

Great acting and very clever to humanise Isaac in that way, very original.

Impressed.
3.5 stars.
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Paul M.
Wed, Feb 13, 2019, 8:25pm (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S2: A Happy Refrain

"Truthfully Jammer I don't know why you continue to write reviews for this show. You clearly don't like it. I get it that the show drives page views for your site beyond what discovery is bringing in these days. But are you just that defensive of discovery that you must force yourself to watch and give negative reviews to a tangentially related TV show just out of defensiveness?"

:Chuckle:

There is one guy here who is rather defensive when it comes to a certain TV show... and it ain't Jammer. :)
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Paul M.
Sun, Feb 10, 2019, 12:49pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: An Obol for Charon

OmicronThetaDeltaPhi, what was your first Trek?
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Paul
Sat, Feb 9, 2019, 8:09pm (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S2: All the World Is Birthday Cake

Well. Lots wrong with this episode. Here’s one thing I haven’t seen mentioned.

We judge people by their achievements, not their star sign.

Yeah? Is that why the security officer was, in this very same episode, given the job?

Nope - the Captain ‘insisted on a xeleyan’. Meaning he chose her based entirely on her race.

The world that has been created is inconsistent - and I’m not sure they care about it.
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Ari Paul
Tue, Feb 5, 2019, 1:39am (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: Legacy

I keep thinking about Linda Hamilton when I see this guest star in this episode...specifically the Terminator movie. Then there is the fact that Linda Hamilton has a twin sister, which is extra intriguing...

I think this guest star's career was probably negatively affected by Linda Hamilton's success. I mean, if you're a casting director, aren't you telling yourself "Do I really want the Terminator chick in my production?" Think about it. It's not just the looks, but it's the whole vibe.

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Paul M.
Mon, Feb 4, 2019, 5:15pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Point of Light

"But I *do* mind if these people give those diverse characters a crappy role that doesn't do them justice. Does the character of Michael Burnham really does the black population any favors? In season 1, at least, she was one step away from being a villain. Do we really need more black villains on TV?"

When I watch Burnham, I see a character who is rather one-note and an actress who doesn't exactly blow me away with her acting chops. None of which has anything to do with her being black. The color of Sonequa's skin has absolutely nothing to do with the depiction of Burnham and her on-screen experiences aren't grounded in racial themes nor does the show in any way explore them in relation to her character.

"The situation with Tilly is even worse, because the reason she is so annoying is that she is written as a stereotype. The general population already "knows" that people with Asperger's are socially stupid and annoying as ****. Does the character of Tilly alleviates this stigma in any way?"

My 15-year-old nephew has Asperger's and can be annoying as hell. And sweet as hell. He never knew his father because the guy ran for the exit the minute he heard about the pregnancy. My nephew sees me as a kind of father figure; I think I can in some small way be credited with the way he turned out. All this is my way of saying that people with Asperger's can be considered "socially stupid and annoying as hell" because, well, they kinda are. But there is also much more to them, as to any other human being, if one is willing to look beneath the surface. Saying that Tilly's character is a stereotype is in itself a stereotypical argument that reduces a rather vibrant character, and a valuable addition to the Discovery crew, to "that chick with Asperger's".

"Doing "representation" like this is pointless and even harmful."

Yeah well, I think that viewing every racial, ethnic, sexual, and what-have-you minority character as "representation" first and foremost is where today's identity politics shenanigans and its mirror-opposites on the right have gone off the rails. Can these characters be viewed as people for once and not fictional paragons of their "identities"? Identities, which are by the way regularly reduced to "black", "gay", "disabled", "woman", "white man", or what have you, by the very people who often claim to be the foremost fighters for these causes. In a way, we have come full circle: both the worst homophobe and the biggest self-styled SJW see a gay person as one thing and one thing only, just from a different perspective -- a gay person. It's very tiring.
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Paul M.
Mon, Feb 4, 2019, 4:30pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Point of Light

"(1) The current intolerance against gays is an order of magnitude worse than the current situation with women or racial minorities."

I am not American, but can someone who is answer this question for me: Who has a better starting chance to get a good education, decent-paying job, and not get shot in the street because you carried a candy bar in a dark alley? Gays or racial minorities?
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Paul M.
Thu, Jan 31, 2019, 3:39pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: New Eden

You really do like alliteration, Gil.
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Paul M.
Wed, Jan 30, 2019, 2:25pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: New Eden

Or, you know, advertising...
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Paul M.
Sun, Jan 27, 2019, 4:43pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: New Eden

@Booming: She's not Mary Sue. Culbert is not token gay. (I mean really, what is Stamets then? The exception that proves the rule? Ha!) Those are just all-present buzzwords these days that people love to use no matter what. I mean, dislike Burnham all you want. Hell, I also happen to think she's probably the most uninteresting lead character of any Trek show to date, which, I am sad to say, isn't only the writers' fault but also the result of Sonequa's rather one-note acting. But I just zone out immediately when I see these lazy arguments like "Mary Sue" get bandied about. Jesus, every single TV and movie out there is full of Mary Sues nowadays, and they all want to destroy men. Of course, those same movies/shows are also full of toxic men who want to violate women in every way they can and they are helped by self-hating women who don't understand they are apologizing for the patriarchy by meekly submitting. Or something. It's insufferable really.
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Paul M.
Sun, Jan 27, 2019, 12:56pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: New Eden

"The subtext is that because Mirror Georgiou is female and a person of colour (in the modern parlance), her pantomime evil of the type we were supposed to abhor in Lorca is translated into awesomeness and empoweredness."

Shoot me now, please. The only thing left to do is find a way to mention Putin with regards to Discovery, and the entire spectrum of current socio-political obsessions will be included in these pages, as they are on ALL the damn pages on the entirety of the Internet. I know it's hard to fathom, but there are other impulses out there besides hating white men, empowering women to rise against male hegemony, and exposing Russian interference in the destruction of all things holy.

With that out of the way, let me say that I find Discovery Season 2 a very pleasant experience, much improved over regrettably problematic -- yet in my eyes still watchable -- Season 1. I appreciated a welcome return to classic Trek storytelling, wrapped in distinctive Discovery visual style. A good sign for the future of this show.
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JPaul
Thu, Jan 24, 2019, 10:31pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Brother

Discovery is basically Next Generation if:
- Picard was killed after Encounter at Farpoint and Thomas Riker became captain.
- Data and Geordi were non speaking roles, with Troi completely absent.
- Worf was promoted to first office after Picard died and the fact that he was the only Klingon in Starfleet was a shoulder shrug.
- Beverly was killed off halfway through season 1.
- Wesley Crusher was an actual crew member and occasionally dropped f-bombs about how much he loves science.
- The alien from the S1 episode "Where No One Has Gone Before" was the ship's chief engineer.
- An emotionless Tasha Yar was the central character of the show and constantly saving the ship instead of Wesley Crusher.
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Paul M.
Sun, Jan 20, 2019, 11:43am (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Brother

The comment above is the exact thing I've been talking about. Some people are so determined to hate Discovery, they even think showrunners themselves are secretly signaling the audience that they are fully aware they're producing crap.

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Paul M.
Sun, Jan 20, 2019, 5:25am (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Brother

Great review Jammer! So glad to have you back (on Trek reviews, that is). Maybe some of the DIS bashers could look up to people like you and Ubik to understand what is involved in writing a thoughtful yet far-from-glowing critique of this show. I am not a big fan of Discovery, but I've waded through enough minefields in my life to know it's not wise to a priori dismiss fictional TV properties on the grounds of not adhering to established or expected dogma and/or doctrine, emotional connection to which is more often than not established during one's childhood. Pursuit to recapture that foundational experience is rarely a worthwhile experience, at least where I am concerned.

I find DIS has a long way to go for me to start considering it a great -- or even consistently good -- series, but the premiere was a solid and exciting adventure romp with great production values, promising new characters, and an overarching plot that may prove to be an exciting addition to Trek canon, if told competently (fingers crossed). I don't know if it will pan out, but I am willing to give this series the benefit of the doubt. It is not nearly the travesty some may want to believe (these things rarely are). I am looking forward to Episode 2.
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Paul M.
Sat, Jan 19, 2019, 4:52am (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Brother

"We don’t need incidental music in every single dialogue scene and if we must have it could stand to be more supportive and in the background."

Josh to Berman, Josh to Berman, come in please.

...

Kidding, kidding, I couldn't pass that one up. :)
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Paul
Thu, Jan 17, 2019, 10:18am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Homestead

It was good leadership by Janeway. She knew that Neelix was selfless and didntbwant to give up his responsibilties on ship just for himself. So she took the decision out of his hands while stoking his ego (‘Ambassador’, ‘difficult to run the ship without you’). I too was moved by the final scene. Neelix has always been the plot exposition device guy, but he was a good man. Enjoyable episode.
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Ari Paul
Sun, Jan 13, 2019, 10:28pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S3: The Price

Love the music. The score of this episode is uniquely great, as with the overall tone.

I feel like season three is unique in that all its episodes are much more different from each other in tone and flavor than in the other seasons.
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Ari Paul
Sat, Jan 5, 2019, 12:34am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S6: Fury

Question: What was Jennifer Lien like to work with??

Cuz if she was a pain in the arse, then the writers probably just wanted to have a good laugh shi*&^% on her character after they forced her off the show. I wouldn't blame them in that case...
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Paul M.
Thu, Dec 27, 2018, 4:51pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: The Wire

Rahul, I'm not sure where this comes from. Have I been anything but civil in my discussion? Why do you feel personally offended by my words? Moreover, where in any of my posts did you see "left-wing fanaticism"? I have nothing against capitalism as practiced in Europe and elsewhere -- social democratic variety. I have severe misgivings about neoliberal capitalism that strips people of healthcare and gives undue power to unelected corporate elites. How that position devolved to your point about fanatics and tens of millions of dead, I have no clue. I am sure Fox News soundbites about Venezuela have something to do with it, but that is a pretty tired example. I mean, why not talk about Sweden or Netherlands? Or any number of other countries with strong social democratic foundations?

By the way, 45,000 people die every year (back in 2009) in the US because they don't have access to healthcare. I don't know, that sounds pretty effed up to me, but mileage may vary, I guess.
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Paul M.
Tue, Dec 25, 2018, 2:05pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: The Wire

"How many deaths are directly attributable to neoliberal capitalism?"

If I remember correctly, around 45,000 in the US every year.
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Paul M.
Tue, Dec 25, 2018, 10:11am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: The Wire

"I know what you're saying -- that the predominant force on the left is this democratic socialism, and traditional socialism doesn't have a "serious force" behind it. And I'd agree with that - thankfully. But what I don't know is the risk of democratic socialism moving further to the left and turning into full-blown socialism and, even worse, communism. Maybe that risk is small in today's world."

Well, the more contemporary governments force unbridled monstrosity that is neoliberal capitalism down the vanishing middle class throat, the bigger the chance some extreme quasi-communist hydra rears its ugly head in response.
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Paul M.
Sun, Dec 23, 2018, 4:00pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: The Wire

@Rahul: "And many Poles/Czechs who lived through the communism imposed upon them by the Soviets decry it and warn Americans not to embrace socialism -- for they've lived through the destruction it wrought."

Not my intention to let this devolve into a political argument, but there is some serious mixing of terminology here. For one, I don't think think there is any serious force in American politics advocating socialism in its traditional sense, but something more akin to social democracy. Even Bernie is guilty of this as he calls his policies "democratic socialism" when they are in fact what should be properly called social democratic concepts. Second, hardly anyone of consequence in Europe is warning Americans not to embrace socialism (again, properly called social democracy) when practically every single country in Europe *IS* a social democracy with single-payer healthcare, robust social security net, stronger government regulation of markets etc.
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