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Tue, Dec 10, 2013, 10:22pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Repression

@T'Paul - I must respectfully disagree with your statement: "Therefore, communism, in it's true state has never existed." Let me quote at length from Will Durant's "Story of Civilization Volume I: Our Oriental Heritage." The basic gist of this is that all primitive man existed in a state of communism. I find the footnote a very interesting thought as well and probably more interesting in its theory than the rest of this.

"Trade was the great disturber of the primitive world, for until it came, bringing money and profit in its wake, there was no property and therefore little government. In the early stages of economic development property was limited for the most part to things personally used; the property sense applied so strongly to such articles that they (even the wife) were often buried with their owner; it applied so weakly to things not personally used that in their case the sense of property, far from being innate, required perpetual reinforcement and inculcation.

Almost everywhere, among primitive peoples, land was owned by the community. The North American Indians, the natives of Peru, the Chittagong Hill tribes of India, the Borneans and South Sea Islanders seem to have owned and tilled the soil in common, and to have shared the fruits together. "The land," said Omaha Indians, "is like water and wind - what cannot be sold." In Samoa the idea of selling land was unknown prior to the coming of the white man. Professor Rivers found communism in land still existing in Melanesia and Polynesia; and in inner Liberia it may be observed today.

Only less widespread was communism in food. It was usual among "savages" for the man who had food to share it with the man who had none, for travelers to be fed at any home they chose to stop at on their way, and for communities harassed with drought to be maintained by their neighbors. If a man sat down to his meal in the woods he was expected to call loudly for some one to come and share it with him, before he might justly eat alone. When Turner told a Samoan about the poor in London the "savage" asked in astonishment: "How is it? No food? No friends? No house to live in? Where did he grow? Are there no houses belonging to his friends?" The hungry Indian had but to ask to receive; no matter how small the supply was, food was given him if he needed it; "no one can want food while there is corn anywhere in the town." Among the Hottentots it was the custom for one who had more than others to share his surplus till all were equal. White travelers in Africa before the advent of civilization noted that a present of food or other valuables to a "black man" was at once distributed; so that when a suit of clothes was given to one of them the donor soon found the recipient wearing the hat, a friend the trousers, another friend the coat. The Eskimo hunter had no personal right to his catch; it had to be divided among the inhabitants of the village, and tools and provisions were the common property of all. The North American Indians were described by Captain Carver as "strangers to all distinctions of property, except in the articles of domestic use... They are extremely liberal to each other, and supply the deficiencies of their friends with any superfluity of their own." "What is extremely surprising," reports a missionary, "is to see them treat one another with a gentleness and consideration which one does not find among common people in the most civilized nations. This, doubtless, arises from the fact that the words 'mine' and 'thine,' which St. Chrystostom says extinguish in our hearts the fire of charity and kindle that of greed, are unknown to these savages." "I have seen them," says another observer, "divide game among themselves when they sometimes had many shares to make; and cannot recollect a single instance of their falling into dispute or finding fault with the distribution as being unequal or otherwise objectionable. They would rather lie down themselves on an empty stomach than have it laid to their charge that they neglected to satisfy the needy... They look upon themselves as but one great family."

Why did this primitive communism disappear as men rose to what we, with some partiality, call civilization? Sumner believed that communism proved un-biological, a handicap in the struggle for existence; that it gave insufficient stimulus to inventiveness, industry and thrift; and that the failure to reward the more able, and punish the less able, made for a leveling of capacity which was hostile to growth or to successful competition with other groups. Loskiel reported some Indian tribes of the northeast as "so lazy that they plant nothing themselves, but rely entirely upon the expectation that others will not refuse to share their produce with them. Since the industrious thus enjoy no more of the fruits of their labor than the idle, they plant less every year." Darwin thought that the perfect equality among the Fuegians was fatal to any hope of their becoming civilized; or, as the Fuegians might have put it, civilization would have been fatal to their equality. Communism brought a certain security to all who survived the diseases and accidents due to the poverty and ignorance of primitive society; but it did not lift them out of that poverty. Individualism brought wealth, but it brought, also, insecurity and slavery; it stimulated the latent powers of superior men, but it intensified the competition of life, and made men feel bitterly a poverty which, when all shared it alike, had seemed to oppress none." - *

* - "Perhaps one reason why communism tends to appear chiefly at the beginning of civilizations is that it flourishes most readily in times of dearth, when the common danger of starvation fuses the individual into the group. When the abundance comes, and the danger subsides, social cohesion is lessened, and individualism increases; communism ends where luxury begins. As the life of a society becomes more complex, and the division of labor differentiates men into diverse occupations and trades, it becomes more and more unlikely that all these services will be equally valuable to the group; inevitably those whose greater ability enables them to perform the more vital functions will take more than their equal share of the rising wealth of the group. Every growing civilization is a scene of multiplying inequalities; the natural differences of human endowment unite with differences of opportunity to produce artificial differences of wealth and power; and where no laws or despots suppress those artificial inequalities they reach at last a bursting point where the poor have nothing to lose by violence, and the chaos of revolution levels men again into a community of destitution.

Hence the dream of communism lurks in every modern society as a racial memory of a simpler and more equal life; and where inequality or insecurity rises beyond sufferance, men welcome a return to a condition which they idealize by recalling its equality and forgetting its poverty. Periodically the land gets itself redistributed, legally or not, whether by Gracchi in Rome, the Jacobins in France, or the Communists in Russia; periodically wealth is redistributed, whether by the violent confiscation of property, or by confiscatory taxation of incomes and bequests. Then the race for wealth, goods and power begins again, and the pyramid of ability takes form once more; under whatever laws may be enacted the abler man manages somehow to get the richer soil, the better place, the lion's share; soon he is strong enough to dominate the state and rewrite or interpret the laws; and in time the inequality is as great as before. In this aspect all economic history is the slow heart-beat of the social organism, a vast systole and diastole of naturally concentrating wealth and naturally explosive revolution."
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Tue, Dec 10, 2013, 8:43pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S1: Dear Doctor

@Andy's Friend:

"Think of the technological advances of the past decades on Earth. Several of these, some decades ago, allowed us for example to help people with difficulty in conceiving to have babies of their own. And now, several decades later, research suggests that on average, those who were conceived thanks to such technologies have somewhat greater difficulty themselves in conceiving than the average population. What will happen if/when those people also receive technological help to conceive? How many generations will it take before we have succeeding in "breeding" an otherwise barren "sub-species" that can only conceive by technological means?"

What an interesting question. Not sure that it fits in this topic so I won't take it up but very interesting indeed.
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Mon, Jun 24, 2013, 6:47pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S1: Dear Doctor

@Elliott: "Analogy is the smallest form of human reasoning. If the beings the Enterprise encountered weren't sentient, but some sort of higher primate below that level of evolution, I don't think there would be a moral outrage about allowing nature to take its course."

I read that as an analogy, ironically placed after a slap at analogies. If I'm incorrect perhaps you need to educate me on how that's not an analogy.

Besides that minor quibble - and the other minor quibble that ego can be maintained within the collective family/tribe/nation/state/planet etc - I DO agree with you from an interference/non-interference stance. On detecting a pre-warp space vessel with life-signs, I would have never stopped to begin with. Here's a sentient species beginning their own voyage into the unknown - who am I to interfere and rob them of the joys of discovery and the tragedy of failure that my own species had to endure?

I believe my morals were referred to as "abhorrent" when making a similar argument to yours :)

I might have to watch the first 10 minutes of this episode again to see if they ever even approached the Enterprise or if it was Archer that assisted them just thinking they looked like they needed help.
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Wed, Jun 19, 2013, 11:22pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Preemptive Strike

going off on a tangent...

I can also envision a Battlestar Galactica without interpersonal conflicts. Written by someone with actual knowledge of warfare, strategy and tactics who doesn't use... "idiot" methods to get his characters into trouble.

You know, "idiot" plot, like two characters are fighting with each other so they don't hear cylons sneaking up, or a guard isn't set on a camp for no other reason than that the writers want it to be attacked and can't be bothered to make their characters intelligent enough to set a guard in which case the cylons would have to actually be clever to launch a sneak attack.

Instead of characters fighting all.the.time. you could have them working together to achieve the goal of throwing off their pursuers and finding a new home. Adama could have given rousing speeches on why we fight and tear-jerking eulogys at the funerals of characters because people do die. Instead of scene after scene of Starbuck oozing teenage-angst we could have scene after scene of her out-stripping cylon fighters because she's supposed to be a great fighter pilot, right? I saw more of her "acclimating" to being a CAG than I ever did of her actually fighting Cylons.

It could have been a sci-fi military classic, with strong commanding roles and gripping, intelligent battles that don't depend on one side being incompetent. Sure it would have been a little more talkie but hey, I'm only filling in scenes that consist of characters just posturing at each other, exchanging glares, not dialogue. Something has to fill that void. It would also have had better and longer battles - that always helps especially with dialogue running throughout with the ship-to-ship communications.

Instead we got a dysfunctional group that is at each others throats almost every minute of every day unless a cylon raid shows up in which they throw aside all conflict and team up together to fend off the threat. Then they go right back at each others throats. That is a bleak, hopeless vision for mankind, whether they win through in the end or not. Whether they have moments of friendship or not. The over-arcing theme of BSG is that humans do not like each other and even being pushed to the brink of utter annihilation won't change that. That we are petty, self-serving cretins.

That is bleak and hopeless, dark, bitter view of the world and its people. Diseased minds wrote that show, week after week. All over it is praised, this site included. How folks who love Star Trek with its intrinsically positive view for the future can love BSG as much - if not more - absolutely astounds my mind. Even DS9, lauded and beloved for its darker view of the Trekkian universe still portrayed more often than not, folks coming together and working together towards common goals. A brighter future.

I'm NOT saying that people like this don't exist but why is every one of them on the crew of Galactica? Behavior like this is aberrant and should be considered aberrant. No real military would tolerate Starbuck's constant "bucking." It's inconceivable that a soldier who shows that sort of rogue behavior is promoted and put in charge over young people's lives. She's a great pilot with a good tactical instinct. Great, let her fly and ask for her advice and listen when she offers it. Don't put her in charge of people's lives.

I could rant at BSG forever so I'll just stop here. Tangent ceased!
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Wed, Jun 19, 2013, 10:41pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Preemptive Strike


More or less agreed, I wouldn't want a uniformity of "wholesome" entertainment. I certainly wouldn't want to go after Hollywood or HBO/Encore/Starz etc. As to superhuman, I'll have to disagree. Watch more movies from the 30s and 40s. There are a great deal of "dark" heroes though they usually end up turning to good to protect the innocent and eventually they will die but a heroic death against what they previously stood for.

As lame as it sounds, I'll cast out Mr. Belvedere as an example of a good role-model on television. He was calm, polite, well-mannered, he was always reading a book and he always had the answers to whatever the moral of the episode was. He was cast as a mere servant but a kindly and benevolent one that was a font of good common sense. He could also make excellent PB&Js. I wouldn't say the show was entertaining but he was a good role model.

You can also have a good man have bad people be inflicted on him and he honestly gets himself out of situations. To take your bank example there are numerous old films that start with a horrible crime and over the course of the movie is the hunt for the wrong-doers by the good guys - and no, they didn't always get their man. I'm not sure there is a false sense of security when a film/show shows that bad things happen to good people but that good people can overcome without succumbing to the bad. That just seems like a positive overall message to me. Crimes in most old movies are brutal, the movie wants you to be appalled, it makes you root for the good guys and maybe, want to be one.

I would also posit that the pendulum *has* swung too far and we *are* wallowing.
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Mon, Jun 17, 2013, 1:29am (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S1: Dear Doctor

Setting aside my already stated preference for abject non-interference from the start that I've already stated (indefensible as it may be), looking at this from the "Cry for Help" perspective as CeeBee very eloquently stated, yes I would help. I hustle along and don't make eye contact with the homeless people passively sitting in Jersey City but if one approaches I always give them something even if it's just a smoke and a light.

Hell once I even helped an arthritic old man who could hardly move his fingers, all disheveled with mickey mouse t-shirt and dirty stains all over him with wild hair and a crazier food dusted beard, shouting, "Help, Help me please!" while nicely dressed men and woman, looked down and scuttled past or told him to, "Get the fuck away from me!" Poor guy couldn't pull papers out of his front pocket that he needed for an appointment at a nearby store. No one would even ask WHAT'S THE PROBLEM! "Whoa now, what's the problem?" I said.

I get sad and a little angry at my fellow man remembering that poor old dude. He'd been through enough, help that guy out. I guess I'm an old softie at heart. So yeah, looking at it as a Cry for Help rather than a Non-Interference issue... yeah I'd help. Well said CeeBee. Got me thinking.


I DO disagree though with your comment on Elliot's analogy. The only thing wrong with Elliot's analogy is that he made it. I can only conclude he wasn't thinking since he had just taken a swipe at analogies. Cut out some of the snark around the edges a minor instance of personal bias and a few crudities that have no place in a debate and you get...

(para-phrasing) Elliot - "The point of the Prime Directive (and its prequel ruminations here) is that it is a policy which is meant to handle a moral situation which is larger than what a human being can cope with. In our own world and time, the implications of helping, curing or arming a foreign country is fuzzy territory and it should be. By the time we're dealing with entire planets and cultures on those planets, ordinary human compassion and empathy (and morality) are insufficient. The point of moral debate comes in when it becomes decided that a certain level of human progress must be achieved (Warp drive in the PD's case) to consider a species evolved enough to qualify for human-like sentience."

Presto, now it can be examined from an interference/non-interference standpoint - instead of the emotionalism of the "Cry for Help" scenario. (ie, "Who CAN we interfere with/help?" Now examine the arbitrary line drawn for helping (interfering) only with warp capable species. That's the crux, that arbitrary line.

I have always had a problem with rules and I don't mean that in the rebellious sort of way. I mean sorts of things like "Rules of Conduct for Captains." Why is Starfleet promoting people to Captain that do not conduct themselves properly? Starbuck from BSG is a perfect example of this. Great pilot great tactical instincts but she does not conduct herself as befitting an officer. She should never have been promoted to her positions. She is a great pilot, let her fly. She has great tactical instincts, ask her advice and listen when she offers it.

Why should a Starfleet Captain need a rule to tell him not to get involved in things when instead Starfleet should be training Captains who can decide for themselves if something is too big to get involved in or not and whose decisions (whatever they may be) can be trusted to reflect only the best ideals and principles of Starfleet?

Guess I'm saying they need to chuck the prime directive and instead re-examine their officer candidacy processes.
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Sun, Jun 16, 2013, 10:21pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Preemptive Strike

Television not only reflects reality but it legitimizes behavior. As television has become coarser and coarser, society, people, have become less civil. Television (not movies) is/was always trying to, "push the envelope" ie.

1950: Married couple enters home (a real nice one, worth coming home to), toss off hats, he picks her up and carries her upstairs. Fade to black.
1970: Married couple make it to bedroom door (inside a posh apartment.) Fade to black.
1990: Married couple fall back on the bed (In a shabby suburban home.) Fade to black.
1995: Unmarried couple fall back on the bed (In a neatly decorated apartment.) Fade to black.
2000: Unmarried couple rustle under the sheets (In a frat house.) No Fading.

A reality show a few years back had cameras in the bedrooms to watch the actors "get it on."

More violence on TV. More cursing on TV. Less hope or people trying to better themselves. A little push here a nudge there.

Imagine falling asleep in 1955 in front of the TV and waking up today with it still on. Your mind would be blown. You would be shocked. Imagine if Two and a Half Men is on, talking about Charlie's ex-lover having a sex change and now having sex with his mom. You're done, your cerebellum is fused.

As TV legitimizes behavior, behavior that YES already does exist, that behavior becomes slightly more acceptable, then more and more, the more often it is portrayed.

Star Trek, especially the original series, always had a grand vision for the future and Humanity's conduct in it. Star Trek's characters took a fierce pride in the Federation's ideals and - prime directive issues aside - always tried to live up to them.

We need more shows with happy families, with fathers who take care of their children, where people don't treat eat other like garbage, don't swear like sailors, work to better themselves, harbor no hate in their hearts, don't steal, don't do drugs, don't cheat on their wives etc etc

Let television legitimize THAT behavior. Shows with hope for the future, with people who don't fight over their petty personal conflicts and work together to achieve something for all and sundry!

But no, we get inter-personal relationship troubles and love triangles and back stabbing even in the face of annihilation.

ranting. So... yeah we need more shows like Star Trek :)
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Sun, Jun 16, 2013, 9:30pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Bloodlines

"...DNA tests confirm Picard's paternity..."

Perhaps the writers were lampooning all of their Fun with DNA[tm] episodes. Everyone standing around anxiously waiting for the results like an episode of Jerry Springer. As if in a universe where Genesis happened not 5 episodes ago a DNA test means anything. Ha! The writers sure are funny.
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Sun, Jun 16, 2013, 9:20pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Firstborn

@Nick: Full agreement on values. Good for you sir.

@Sanagi: Mostly agreed on Alexander. I don't hate him, I merely loathe him because he diminishes Worf by his very presence.

I won't say much about the time travel since I've said more than enough on it elsewhere. Star Trek has just never accepted the central truth that the very act of arriving in the past from the future contaminates the timeline. Star Trek thinks you must actively interfere in order to contaminate. Incorrect.

@William B.:
"...bringing Alexander back as a clumsy idiot who wants to be a Klingon in DS9 undermined the strengths of this episode..."

Respectfully disagree sir. As far as Alexander's arc is concerned this episode was centrally about him making his own choices. It was his choice to embrace Klingon culture at a later date. It may have been a poor decision but at least it was his.

Full agreement though on Worf's arc and very much enjoyed the Spock comparison. How true.
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Sun, Jun 16, 2013, 6:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: The Disease


The Captain could be privy to knowledge an under-officer might not be aware of. Perhaps it is a hostile first contact and the object of a sexual advance is the opposing ambassador's daughter and she hasn't told that detail to her paramour (as they never do tell on television.) Some might look at that and say, "Aw, this will heal everything!" but there are very great odds that the ambassador would see it as a violation. The ambassador may NOT view it that way but what if 99% of his species does? He won't be paving the way into any brave new worlds because he's going to be exiled in disgrace. Or perhaps used as an unwitting symbol to start a war.

Just one example - I can think of many more. In short, the Doctor would provide medical clearance and the Captain would provide... well... "political" clearance I suppose would be the best (sadly) way to put it. Perhaps the Captain could even act as a diplomat to make sure it is okay with the other species. Actually I imagine that would be exactly the Captain's role.

Don't misunderstand, I personally abhor any big-brother governmental type that wants a say in my life but when dealing with an alien species... one should approach things with caution.

I don't imagine this would be the case on settled worlds or trade colonies.
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Sun, Jun 16, 2013, 5:18pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S1: Fusion


I must respectfully disagree. Around 5,000 years have passed since the time of Surak and only 90 years or so between Enterprise and Kirk. The average lifespan of a Vulcan is around 200 years. Achieving the dispassionate logic we see in TOS and TNG from the base we are given is not something I'd expect in a mere 90 years - not even a full Vulcan generation. Consider less the years and more the generations. 25 generations since Surak. I say this because you speak of 22nd century Vulcans from a Human viewpoint. For a Vulcan, 100 years is barely half his life.

I would expect Vulcans, as depicted on this show to be within a generation or 2 of Surak. Shaky in their logic, still twisting it for personal gain, arrogant holdouts from before the Time of Awakening believing in their superiority to non-logical species. But a mere half-generation (for Vulcans) before Kirk and Spock? I can't swallow that pill. I reject it and reject it furiously. Why? Because it DOES destroy the myth, by dragging Vulcans down to a Human level and holding them to a Human standard so that they'll be more understandable to a Human audience instead of an ideal to be striven for.

Though maybe that last bit ( be striven for...) is just me - I see too much emotion-driven things in the world around me and would much rather sit back and dispassionately analyze a situation than leap in with both feet.

As an aside, Kirk delivered that "insult" fondly and took Spock's reply fondly. Frankly, I think our Vulcan friend made a joke. There was never any meanness in their relationship.

Just as I fondly disagree and intend no meanness towards you. I save that for the writers :)

p.s. You could argue that Spock was just an EXCEPTIONAL Vulcan who because of his hybrid nature was driven to be more Vulcan than Vulcans and if such is the case has skewed the mythos surrounding them!
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Sun, Jun 16, 2013, 4:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S1: Detained


While your political ideology goes unstated, I believe I can safely assume you are a liberal/progressive. I thought Liberalism/Progressivism are/were supposed to be about the free exchange of ideas with no respect or disrespect to the expresser of those ideas based on their age/color/gender/ideology? You know, one earth, one sky, one people. Where is honest debate in telling those who merely disagree with you to die? Is it a cold disregard for a segment of humanity that disagrees with you that drives your statement? Or is it just hate?

You now have some idea of who those people watching Star Trek around the globe with you are. For some this might lead them to re-think their pre-disposed notions and perhaps consider that almost all men have a brighter vision for the future. You could even engage those with opposing ideologies directly referencing Star Trek as a basis for debate and discussion leading to a free exchange of ideas towards how we can achieve such a bright future.

Or perhaps in wishing death on all who have opposing viewpoints you really are trying to shape the future into Star Trek. After all, warp-drive was created by capitalistic greed amidst the ashes of a war that devastated the world. I think I'd rather live to see that future though.
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Sun, Jun 16, 2013, 12:32pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S2: The Captain's Hand

I would have liked to have seen someone have a calm sit down with the girl explaining the current state of the race and the future demographic outlook. Discuss with her the options of having the child and then giving it up to foster care, or how the community would give her aid in raising it if she changed her mind. In other words, educate the individual about her choices and stakes she may not be aware of.

I disagree with abortion laws, pro or con. I disagree with pretty much all ways that governments politicize everything into issues. We should be free to make any decision regarding our own lives on our own. As such I would have liked that little chat I wanted to have been between the girl and her doctor. If she still wanted an abortion, very well - if not, very well.

Very well either way because she would have made an educated decision for herself. Good on her. As is, she is portrayed as a scared girl who wants this thing out of her (though I wonder, then, why she keeps affectionately stroking her tummy). Perhaps she already knew her options and the overall outlook, perhaps not. Perhaps she was just regretting spending one night with a handsome Viper pilot. We will never know. The show dehumanized her, just using her to score political points - just like governments do today.

Anyway, not a bad episode. Last few had been so bad that I took a several month hiatus from watching it but, now I return.
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Tue, Jan 15, 2013, 7:24pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S2: Scar

So forced! The episode is over cooked. Scene after scene that you just want to end. Zero tension due to this ridiculous flashback storytelling kick the writers are on.
This whole crew comes across as more and more and more unprofessional. Even though he has had barely any face time in the last few episodes I'm beginning to dislike Adama for the sole reason that it's HIS ship. He let's these overgrown children into command positions. There seems to be almost no discipline on the ship.
Frustrating to watch a show that is getting increasingly fake and forced. From previous read reviews and comments I had the impression that this show was something special but it's getting more and more like Star Trek Voyager in plot and soap opera in execution.
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Mon, Jan 14, 2013, 7:15pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Masks

'"Symbology" is indeed a word, meaning the study of symbols. If I meant symbolism, I'd have said that, though use of either word would've been true in this case.'

Yes, in between that posting and seeing the response now, I was being a bit snarky in exactly the same way and got educated the same way. Consider me educated. And chagrined.
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Mon, Jan 14, 2013, 7:08pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S2: Epiphanies

End the War? Do the folks on the show watch the show? Does the lower deck crew of Galactica and the civilian crews of the fleet pay attention to current events? The war is over. You lost. So what does End the War mean? Stop running and let yourself be slaughtered or put in a prison camp? Plot doesn't even make sense. Writers keep trying to instill real world messages into the shows but a great many of them just do not work in the story's own setting.
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Fri, Dec 21, 2012, 1:50pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Masks

"Joe Menosky, the Trek writer who has explored ancient societies, myths, and oblique concepts more than any other, stuffs "Masks" so full of symbology and ancient characters that it becomes an archaeologist's turgid self-parody."

I can't tell if you're being serious or not but symbology isn't actually a word. The word you're looking for is 'symbolism.' Watch "Boondock Saints" and Willem Dafoe will explain it. Sssssssssymbolism!
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Fri, Dec 21, 2012, 1:11pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S2: Final Cut

I must have missed her name in the credits because the whole episode I was thinking, "this lady is familiar." Didn't see her name until the review and then, "Xena!?" haha

BSG is actually starting to slide downhill for me - the drama is so forced, the music so contrived, the dialogue so fake, the acting so over the top... people aren't like this. Anyone who is, is a deeply disturbed person. It's like the writers took the worst character traits of about 100 different people and 10 good character traits from 10 different people. Then the writers molded 10 main characters out of that clay, each made up of 10 horrible traits and 1 good one. Blech.

I had such grand hopes for Tigh but he has become increasingly one-dimensional, his wife is a name I have begun to despise when I see her guest starring and he just won't man up and put that bottle down. Rooting for him so hard to throw that bottle away and he just WON'T! argh!

And I gotta say, the whole interview thing was almost totally worthless. Who the heck actually remembered Kat? At least "Hot Dog" gets name-dropped, this lady is just a face in the crowd. Someone mentioned that they never mentioned her acting strange so pill-popping seems kind of outta left field. Well anything they do with her will be out of left field because they haven't mentioned her since she was recruited! And Dualla on camera... haha They sure are pretty eyes but man do they just stare emptily into nothingness - and don't tell me she was being faraway because she was discussing hard things! Her eyes are always vacant and huge like a deer in headlights.
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Mon, Nov 19, 2012, 8:50pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S1: Kobol's Last Gleaming, Part 2

Great episode! Though I am surprised that no one mentioned the 8 inches of rebar sticking through Six's chest that somehow didn't kill Starbuck when they fell chest-to-chest.
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Sun, Nov 18, 2012, 9:35pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S1: Dear Doctor

Perhaps my moral instincts are appalling - I can be quite unmoved. Clinical detachment is the bottom line for me. I prefer to observe and then act.

The arguement for withholding the cure is not invalid just because you disagree with it. If anything, I suppose it being such a hard decision to make is why I refer to it as a "mature" decision. You see, I'm jaded from all these folks around me today that seem incapable of sitting down and thinking things through from every perspective, even absolutely vile ones and instead just act impetuously from an emotional based spark. I can't really articulate a justification of the decision in the episode but it feels like the right decision to me. Maybe it's my "gut" that's appalling or perhaps just a bit of half-digested cheese. I'll concede that Phlox's science is a bit shaky and perhaps there was some favortism for the Menk but I'll still stick by the core decision even if I can't really explain why.

Can we agree that they should have not gotten involved in the first place? If we can't, then perhaps that's the root since I'm judging from the viewpoint of non-involvement in the first place.

Or did you just want to call my moral instincts appalling? :)

Oh I agree with you by the way in an earlier post above, you did mention that the PD was not about letting a race be destroyed. I think on TOS there was even an episode where Kirk had to stop an asteroid from hitting a native type culture. Very pre-warp. Just sparing lives. My moral instincts have no qualms about redirecting asteroids away from pastoral worlds I am happy to report!
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Sun, Nov 18, 2012, 8:58am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Fifth Season Recap

Eloquent defense but completely unnecesary because I already am in 100% agreement with you on every point made above, Jammer. "The Inner Light"s 4-star rating is more than a testament to the big picture not affecting TNG ratings. You *do* make that same kind of rhetorical point in a number of TNG/TOS episodes though, so I hope you can see how that accumulation can grow in someone's mind - especially when reading entire season reviews at a time.

Concerning what you said on "The Inner Light," I'd like to think that the memories did not leave him, else the great first half of "Lessons" has no basis for greatness. And I must add, I did think Picard changed. I always found Picard to be quieter and more thoughtful after this particular encounter and while he never said it had anything to do with his experiences, I always attributed it to that. I prefer that type of subtle/quiet (In the background) character growth over the folks on BSG running around with their emotions on their sleeves.

Dangerously close to a ramble so I'll stop there!
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Sat, Nov 17, 2012, 4:19pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Repression

@Elliot: I've read a lot more of your posts since that last one and I sure had you pegged wrong. While I still don't agree with you 100%, I find myself in agreement with you more and more and even when in disagreement I find myself reading your posts two or three times and sometimes re-evaluating my thoughts based on your insights. Anyway Elliot, just wanted to apologize for sub-consciously pegging you at all.
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Sat, Nov 17, 2012, 3:45pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Fifth Season Recap

You're right, I did overstate - I think I had just recently read your review of "The Inner Light" where your last paragraph is a resignation to the facts of episodic television. You're definitely *not* railing against the lack of a big picture but I don't believe I'm wrong either that you wish the episode (and others like it)could have meant more beyond this 45 minutes.

I'm sure Voyager's writers occasionally winking to the fans with a nod to continuity (that was usually forgotten or insta-resolved) didn't help since it reminded you of the potential that they seemed to know was there, ready to be mined and that they were actively willing themselves not to use!

Sadly my first Trek exposure that I can recall was Star Trek V. Even more sadly, as a child I thought it was awesome. Rewatched it last year and... oh man, so bad. "Why does God need a starship?" was still classic though.

I'm surprised how DS9 captivated you actually. I started watching the show/movies around the same time. Bobbling on my dad's knee and hearing him say "Goddamm Wesley, get off the bridge!" all the time. TNG was must-see-TV in my household. Anyway, when DS9 came on my father and I made it to maybe the 3rd season and then just rejected it. I believe you yourself have stated that the first 2 seasons of DS9 were quite shaky. You must have been a born Trekker to make it through to the good stuff. Guess you were since you saw TOS long before I did.

As an adolescent I enjoyed Voyager more because Star Trek was back on a star ship and exploring. That's what Star Trek was to me. I suppose without DS9 as a gauge I couldn't see all the missed potential. As an adult though Voyager is beyond redemption (but for a few) and DS9 is fantastic (but for a few). Strangely despite its campiness, these days I enjoy TOS the most. The interplay between Spock/Kirk/Bones is just great stuff.

Anyway, I ramble. I always ramble. Thanks for replying to my curiosity.
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Sat, Nov 17, 2012, 3:16pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S1: Colonial Day

Have to agree with Jammer on this one. This entire episode just seems completely implausible. I really can't rate it lower than a C- (2 stars) though because the characters are so well acted. The actors really portray their characters well, even the ones that I don't like.

@Michael: I find it strange that you're consistently hard on Roslin. I thought she would be the wishy-washy type myself but she has consistently made hard decisions that I can respect. I've really come to like her character. You can't fairly label her a "liberal" either. Or a "conservative." It's not like she has made her stance on social issues and economic issues known yet.

Concerning this episode, all I can really add is that I found it very distasteful when Zarek was questioning why the old gardener would still go to work. It was like he was encouraging him to go home and sit on his hands because the "old order was over." That old man probably enjoys what he does. He's a cog in an efficient wheel. Just because the economy and the market have dissapeared doesn't mean that he can't keep that garden beautiful. Just silly anarchist talk. Like the bartender, why should I have him make me a drink since there is nothing in it for him. What does that even mean?? The guy just promotes chaos. Anarchy. Things you're supposed to grow up from. Can do without Tom Zarek. /airlock
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Thu, Nov 15, 2012, 7:40pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S1: Tigh Me Up, Tigh Me Down

@Chris: Yes! The wife and I watched the intro vid of one episode and it gave away every single pertinent plot point. What a moronic decision.

I didn't think this episode was too bad beyond Ellen being unbearable - the rest of the cast's reactions to her are priceless. Baltar the weasel is beginning to grow on me. I still want to see him tossed out of an airlock since I know he's lying about Ellen (guessing but c'mon) and Boomer but he certainlty has his moments.

The Cylon ship though... I'm pretty sure it made contact with Galactica kamikaze style so I don't see how Tigh saved all their lives. I like him and want him to rise above his failings but this episode wasn't that.
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