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Pete328
Sun, Jul 31, 2016, 4:40pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Eye of the Needle

Correction: that was "nannites" not nannies. There was a TNG episode where Wesley created nannites that started eating the ship's circuitry and it was realized they were living things.

The fun of autocorrect is things like "nannies." I would guess there were some nannies in the Enterprise-D, since there were plenty of little kids. And those nannies would also deserve the same respect as Data or Voyager's doc.
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Pete328
Sun, Jul 31, 2016, 4:33pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Eye of the Needle

This is easily the best episode I've seen so far, six episodes in.

It was very well acted, including by the actor playing the sympathetic Romulan. I also agree that the B plot surrounding the doctor is a highlight. TNG's "Measure of a Man" is easily in my top 2-3 TNG episodes, and largely because it raises the same question: at what point is a self-aware artificial entity given the same rights and basic respect as a human? To me, the answer is obvious. If you are self aware and sentient, what does it matter if you are flesh and blood, plastic and positronic neural nets, or holographic programming -- you are an intelligent being. It's funny that Star Trek characters have less of an issue respecting sentient nebulas, nannies, and space whales than their own crewmembers who aren't conventionally humanoid life forms.

In any case, my only quibble is the minor slip when the Romulan captain is speaking to Janeway on audio and she is in her quarters in a night gown. He says good night and I wondered how he knows it's night on Voyager unless he can secretly see Janeway in her pj's. Shipboard night and day would obviously be an artificial construct for the crew's convenience and would not be standardized across ships. For all we know, the Romulan science probe ship is synced to the time zone of the captain's home back on Romulus and Voyager is set to the local time zone at Star Fleet headquarters on Earth...or somewhere else.
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Pete328
Sun, Jul 31, 2016, 11:33am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: The Cloud

Interesting review from Jammer and very interesting comments. As a first time viewer, I'm still in two minds about this show and wondering if I'll commit to all 170+ episodes.

At this point, I'm willing to suspend disbelief on the whole "We're 75 years from home but we'll take our time and explore everything."

In reality, the sensible thing to do would be to engage maximum warp, set up sensors or mapping instruments to record automatically, and put damn near the entire crew in some kind of cryogenic sleep to save on food and people's sanity. But then you wouldn't have a show.

As one commenter pointed out, it might have been better to put them in a different galaxy and eliminate the whole possibility of returning home. That would have made it all about exploration and getting enough power and supplies to keep on flying -- almost like Firefly.

Firefly, however, is "dirty space," with interpersonal conflict, stuff breaking down, and scarcity. Star Trek has always been utopian. Everyone on the ship gets along, food pops out of every wall, and the ship is always spotlessly clean. It makes sense that Voyager didn't take the "we're down to half power, I'm about to shoot that guy dead, and there's no food left" idea too far, or it would have been unrecognizable as Star Trek.

All this said, I found this episode more annoying than the first few. I really don't like Neelix. He claims to know his way around the quadrant but never has any useful info -- he's a con man, basically. His relationship with Kes is not believable. She is actually very likeable and I don't see what she is doing with a creepy old man/alien charlatan like Neelix. I also don't like Neelix's open fires cooking (wouldn't smoke and flames put a burden on the life support systems), with his apologies everything being overly spiced.

Like others note, the life form we didn't recognize as a life form until we hurt it plot seems like a cop out. I get that the episode advances the characters, but I wish they had done that without a cheesy holodeck creation replete with cliched characters with phoney French accents. I think no one on Star Trek ha actually ever met anyone from France much less actually traveled there. The pool hall would have been better had it been placed on some alien world.
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Pete328
Sat, Jul 30, 2016, 7:44pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Phage

This is my first time watching Voyager. Four episodes in, and I'd give this one a 3 out of 5 for the characterizations. I'm really liking the Doctor as a character.

Like some earlier commenter pointed out, this episode had me immediately thinking of Spock's Brain, which is generally considered one of TOS's silliest instalments. From a medical standpoint, Phage is pretty silly. Never mind using a stored transporter pattern to restore Neelix's lungs, as several others have pointed out, why not just grow him a new set from stem cells? Given that we are pretty close to doing that now with very fast and easy CRISPR gene sequencing, it's hard to believe ST's advanced technology isn't up to that.

The aliens, wonderfully creepy as they are, don't really make sense to me. They reveal that this rapidly adapting disease has ravaged their once proud civilization for many generations, and moments later one of the pair mentions he was a highly regarded sculptor. How does that work? He takes periodic breaks from murder and organ stealing to work on his art?

Still, it was a solid episode if not examined too closely.
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