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Ryan S
Wed, Aug 18, 2021, 10:55am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S5: Imaginary Friend

Counselor Troi couldn't detect a lifeform just a few feet away from her? Her character is so poorly thought out. All she's really capable of is ruining plots, so, they just ignore her special powers and it's always so maddening. They should've killed her character off early in the series.
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J Ryan
Tue, Jul 13, 2021, 9:15pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: MAND S1: Chapter 7: The Reckoning

Thanks for reviewing this show, Jammer. I'm just catching up with it now. I love how it has the authentic look and feel of Star Wars, but in a different part of that universe, and that it's showing the aftermath of the fallen Empire. This episode was a good set up the the finale. I liked how it pulled in characters from earlier episodes, giving the series an overall connectedness without being a slave to current serial storytelling style, and how it's building the relationships between these people (and droids). The end did indeed have an ominous overtone, through an event I didn't expect. Good stuff.
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Bryan
Tue, Jul 13, 2021, 1:11pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DSC S3: That Hope Is You, Part 2

@Booming

I'm not sure if that's meant as a dig or if you think Kurtzman has finally become that adversarial towards the fanbase or if you were just being facetious... But to take that thought at face value, I don't detect any symbolic ill-intent on the part of the showrunners when it comes to Su'Kal. This is mainly because of the way the character is framed. Also, I don't think Su'Kal is supposed to represent either an attack or a defense of Trigger Warnings and Safe Spaces like some have suggested.

Sometimes a shrieking manchild is just a shrieking manchild.
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Bryan
Tue, Jul 13, 2021, 12:54am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DSC S3: That Hope Is You, Part 2

Oh! And poor Stamets. Imagine being denied the opportunity to play hero by the self-styled hero because you're the Key To Everything. But that's enough. You also need to be striped of all agency and stuffed into a box and ejected into space because we can't have the Key To Everything falling into enemy hands, now can we? And then, this is where it gets rich: you're actually not the Key To Everything like everyone thought. At least not anymore! The hero's boyfriend is. And even the Emerald Chain's scientist knew it all along! So getting blown into space was all for naught.
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Bryan
Mon, Jul 12, 2021, 11:24pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DSC S3: That Hope Is You, Part 2

I had given up on Discovery, having lost hope for the series after season 2 was even worse than season 1. A few friends asked me to reconsider and give it another chance since season 3 was supposed to be way better.

Well.. I think I can at least agree that it's less bad this time around but I wouldn't exactly call it "better" in any redeeming sense. Kurtzman's worst excesses have been slightly tempered by the inclusion of new writers, but all of the flaws and problems are still there, and no lessons have been learned. As others have noted, it had promise, but just like the seasons of yesteryear, it squandered that promise when the Mystery Box was finally opened, revealing the whole endeavour to be hollow to its core.

Now, as is tradition, it is time to poke fun at the actual episode:

- How is a 900 year old ship pitted against an entire fleet of ships plus a space station managing to last longer than a minute? I guess this what you get when you have writers who think that genre is meaningless.

- Just what kind of quarantine force field would cover an area that includes an exit into a corridor? A pretty counter-productive one.

- If Su'Kal's ship has only just now decided to lose all its structural integrity, wouldn't the whole threat of the Burn solve itself simply by doing nothing? No Su'Kal, no problem.

- I don't believe that simply being able to hold your breath for a long time makes you nearly impervious to low-oxygen environments.

- That's a pretty outrageous gamble: thinking that maybe because Booker is an empathy he might be able to interface with the spore drive and save the ship in the nick of time from its own warp core that you exploded. I mean..without even testing that theory first. But I guess desperate murders call for desperate measures.

- At least they didn't kill Saru off, but I still think his talents are being slightly under-utilized if he's going to trade his captaincy for babysitting the shrieking manchild. But I got to hand it to the writers; you found a way to finagle things to put Burnham in the captain's chair AND kept Tilly as first officer like you've telegraphed all along without throwing anyone under the bus. But will anyone still watch the show with that arrangement when literally anyone would make for better candidates?

- How great it must be to have a whole team of writers bending the plot around your need to be right every time so that you can convince even Vance to support your captaincy. Because all that matters are the results of your choices, and not the choices themselves.

- Someone asked: "How did the computer know not to beam Aurellio off the ship when Burnham commanded it to beam off all the Emerald Chain?"
I assumed that, being disabled, he had the same Plot Armor that all the marginalized cast members have that the other straight white males seem to lack.
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Bryan
Mon, Jul 12, 2021, 5:21pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DSC S3: Su'Kal

Incompetence compounds upon incompetence in this episode. Just think of how many problems could have been non-issues if Discovery had a shuttlecraft of its own. It looks like they have room for one or more, hence how Book is able to stow his ship. Would it be too much to ask the Federation to supply one given the extreme importance of the main craft? Instead, they always need to wait for last possible second for Book to volunteer himself and his ship because they can't order him around.

So now, Discovery is damaged because they tried to enter an unstable nebula with the whole ship. Then, rather than simply waiting 4 hours to complete repairs, they gotta rush back in for some reason. Never mind that couple hours isn't going to make much difference to a guy who's been waiting 130 years to be rescued.

Then the whole Osyraa debacle. If the best course of action was to jump away, why didn't they do that right away, but waited for Osyraa to put two and two together, and then telegraph exactly when they were going to do it? On that note, if Osyraa could have boarded the ship all along, why didn't she do so right away? I guess because the writers thought that trading schoolyard taunts was an effective display of Tilly's command ability? The reaction shots the crew seem to frame it that way.

There are other things to critique like the hypocritical character assassination of Saru compared to Burnham (BY Burnham no less), and the WHAT WERE THEY THINKING aspects surrounding the character Su'Kal. But I have a feeling that we have hitherto seen just the tip of the iceberg of those problems.
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Bryan
Mon, Jul 12, 2021, 12:24am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DSC S3: Terra Firma, Part 2

Maybe not the worst episode of the season, but perhaps the most painful to watch so far:

- The uncomfortable reminder that Tilly is considered the best choice for commander in all universes. This makes me sad. For the multiverse.

- Georgiou telling Burnham that she should be the captain. No. Just...please, no. Don't put that idea in her head. Isn't it enough that the fate of the universe and everything else has always gotta revolve around her? Saru is an excellent captain and an important check to balance Burnham's savoir complex.

- Also Georgiou: "I wish I had learned these lessons a lot sooner." Yes, you and me both. Then you could have gracefully walked away with Tyler and joined him in development hell and spared us all the gratuitous EdgeLordery.

- I feel bad for the Guardian of Forever, once a harbinger of Momentous Things. Now thanks to the Temporal Time Directive, has been relegated to bestowing Christmas Miracles upon lesser characters and entertaining at children's birthday parties on Sunday afternoons.

- Georgiou's not-quite memorial service where everyone awkwardly musters trite and phoney speeches. "Uhh.. I liked her shoes..?" This is what you get when you're an incessant dick to everyone around you. You get a crappy funeral.
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Bryan
Sun, Jul 11, 2021, 8:32pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DSC S3: The Sanctuary

Just chiming in late to add that even if the opportunity for a stronger metaphor is "wasted" in this episode, I think the allegorical connections established in "Forget Me Not" are sufficient enough to connect a non-binary actor with themes that are relevant both to non-binary people and Star Trek lore alike.

I'm referring to Adira's initial rejection at the hands of the Trill because her very existence was a threat to their cherished concepts and assumptions. Then, of course there was the Trill faction that made her body their business because they thought they knew better. All of this should be familiar territory for the non-binary and trans people watching that episode, and not only because those very issues rear their ugly heads once more in some of the discussion that's happened here.
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Aaron Bryant
Mon, May 17, 2021, 5:01am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S6: Starship Mine

@Trish Hutch was not the only death overlooked in this episode, but also those of Kelsie's accomplices, including those only subdued by Picard, who made a point of that fact in both cases, but would later perish in the baryon sweep.

This episode is a good premise but just has too many loose ends. Why did Kelsie need the money? Why did her team not suspect she would betray them to remove their splits of the earnings? What was Arkania base's role in the plot? It all could've been executed a lot better, I think particularly if the motivation was something other than profit. Look at 11001001 from season 1 for a comparison.
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Ryan Gilmore
Mon, Feb 8, 2021, 2:51am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: TNG S3: The Survivors

The reveal of the episode is very good. I always thought, however, that Picard's line, "We have no law for your crime" seemed bizarre and totally out of character, and more of a way to quickly conclude the episode. Laws against genocide existed since the 20th century, and Picard, being a highly moral character, should have stated Kevin committed one of our worst crimes. It may have been more in character simply just to say that he was too powerful an alien to bring to justice.
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David Ryan
Sat, Dec 5, 2020, 11:37am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

So, having now seen some of The Mandalorian, I find the extent to which the sequels (and in my opinion Rogue One and Solo as well) turned out to be "swing and a miss" completely baffling. There are clearly people with good ideas about the Star Wars universe, with the potential to come up with coherent stories which are sympathetic to what came before and still come up with something new and interesting, and yet...well, you get the picture. It's just so frustrating, and as a fan it does make me wonder where on earth Disney will take things next (beyond The Mandalorian and the proposed Rogue One prequel).

I guess with hindsight, the first warning sign was when they declared all of the 'Legends' material non-canon, regardless of how well received or thought out it was. What was got instead seemed so half-baked it's taken several retcon books and comics to try and make some sense of things. I think for me the whole idea of a new Republic knowing how the Empire came to exist and still doing so little about the First Order setting up shop on its doorstep just beggared belief too much to take it seriously. The 'Legends' stories had their fair share of swings and misses, don't get me wrong, but at least it didn't seem like the entire galaxy had had a collective bout of amnesia or become extremely naive.

As I said before, more's the pity. Here's hoping if there are any more films they've learned something from this experience at least.
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Ryan Talbot
Fri, Dec 4, 2020, 6:14am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DSC S3: The Sanctuary

Great... Adira is now a "they" which is most the ridiculous way to describe a singular person. You could feel the script writers and the woke management masturbating at the "moment" they had created in the camera work on Stamets when Adira "came out".

Over dramatic, over emotional and yet so very shallow .... I literally spent the entire show shopping for a new couch, the billions of dollars they spunk up the wall on effects is wasted when there isn't a story worth telling. Why can I rewatch a TNG/DS9 and god forbid VOY episode I've seen a dozen times ... yet can't be bothered to focus fully on a fresh episode of DSC?

If only Ira was more people savvy and could grab a 2-3 season run out of them to give us an alternative to bullshit (Discovery), more bullshit (Picard) and the rest of the utter tripe these folks are churning out.
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J Ryan
Tue, Jun 9, 2020, 7:57pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

Jammer wrote, "And everyone is very sad, and it's all laid on very thick with everyone crying, and my thought was: "Really? This is how they kill off a legendary character?""

And at that moment, Jammer, you knew how I felt when I saw Kirk's pathetic send off in Generations.

James T deserved so much better.
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Bryan
Sun, May 17, 2020, 4:48am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

Good to see that most people aren't buying the way the show so casually tries to excuse the murder of Maddox. All the characters seem to quickly forgive and forget because they're all one big happy family now, but that won't bring Maddox back.

Even though they brought back Culber, and Tyler arguably had a better excuse, not everyone completely forgave or forgot Tyler for what Voq did, or if they did, it took a while. Agnes will ultimately face the law, but will either be pardoned or found not guilty in short order because, like Tyler, her place in the show is assured not by the audience's approval but because the creators have an overriding respect for the actor.

#JusticeforMaddox
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Bryan
Sun, May 17, 2020, 1:07am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: PIC S1: Broken Pieces

"What you are about to experience will drive some of you mad, but those of you who endure will be stronger. Witness what must be prevented. Endure Star Trek: Discovery... if you can..."

Well, she had a point. Having lived through that certainly made Star Trek: Picard a lot more tolerable, right guys? ...Guys?

*notices all the corpses* Ohh...

-----

Seven of Nine: "Where's Hugh? What is happening on this cube?!"

You said it, Seven. Pretty much sums up my thoughts on the cube-side of the plot throughout the whole series.

-----

Jurati says she's decided to stop murdering people now so it makes total sense to allow her and Soji to be in a room alone together. It took a long time for Soji to finally trust Picard but all it takes from the person who just killed her creator (or would Maddox be more of a midwife?) are a few words of excitement and praise about how unique she is?
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David Ryan
Tue, May 5, 2020, 2:43pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

I waited until it became available on Disney+, mainly because I couldn't stomach paying to see it at the cinema or renting it but I wanted to give it a shot (especially since I'd seen the other 8, for better or worse).

My wife's instant reaction isn't printable, so I'll sum mine up as follows:

For a fan of the first six Star Wars films and the computer games, plus some of the books...it wasn't worth the wait. To be honest, none of the sequels were. I wasn't too impressed with Rogue One either (which is probably more controversial). Disney just doesn't seem to know what to do with Star Wars films (although I've heard good things about The Mandalorian so maybe there's hope yet).

More's the pity.
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J Ryan
Mon, Mar 30, 2020, 12:12pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: PIC S1: Maps and Legends

Ok, my bad. I watched the scene again and he says Raffi, not Beverly. Oops.
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Ryan
Sat, Mar 28, 2020, 8:04am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

@Flip,

I was referring to a subset of fans. Some love it unconditionally, some enjoyed it but had some issues, some didn’t like it overall but had constructive criticism and some likes, and others thought it was complete trash.

That last group had two subgroups. Those who think it was terrible and are moving on, and those who hated every word, every line, flame the producers, and wouldn’t miss the next episode for the world. They hated 90s Trek, complained every week on AOL message boards, or at least their parents did, and will return in a few weeks to flame on Discovery despite hating the first two seasons.

At least they’re consistent.

We are all looking at Picard through a TNG lense.

“But he’s not Picard! He’s different!”

Well, yeah. He’s 94 and had a falling out with Starfleet.

“Some of the writing wasn’t great or things were rushed!”

Well, sure. Seven and Raffi happened off screen and is likely foreshadowing for next season. Both have difficult pasts they’re trying to overcome, and Episode 5 showed that Seven is bisexual, if that’s even a label in the 25th century.

The ban lifting happened offscreen. Somewhere there’s a short where Kirsten Clancy can’t find Oh or Rizzo anywhere and figures out she’s been had, it’s all a big conspiracy, and the Federation Council, all apparently dealing with angry phone calls about the ban for 15 years, are happy to do the right thing.

I forget who posted since last night but...blanking on her name...Soji’s bronze sister there had the frequency to hail Control or whatever those things were...presumably Data’s brother will remove that information before reactivating her.

Agnes? Seemed happy. Was under Oh duress when she pulled the trigger. We’ll see what happens in season two. It’s the biggest qualm with the season for me, but easily fixable.
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Ryan
Fri, Mar 27, 2020, 9:23pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

As a lifelong Trek fan who was active on the message boards twenty years ago, it always astounds me the fans who professionally hate every aspect of every scene, without exception, and extend that to label #NuTrek all trash, every last bit of it, but who watch every episode, and will be back with the Season 2 Picard premiere to keep trashing over it.

I’ve had episodes of series I’ve hated, and vowed never to watch again.

I never watched again. That was it.

There is no possible way any episode, under any showrunner, director or actors, would satisfy you, under any circumstances.

Be healthy, and try to find joy.
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J Ryan
Fri, Mar 27, 2020, 3:10pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: PIC S1: Maps and Legends

Just saw this episode. It was good. Like how they're setting up the players in the story and Picard's status (in the world and with his health). I've got a question, and forgive me if I missed comment on it in the thread above....

Am I the only one who heard Picard say, after he put on his communicator, "Beverly, this is Jean Luc, please don't disconnect. I need your help. I need a ship."

Later he tells someone (don't remember who) that he's already made the call about a ship.

Yes????
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Ryan
Fri, Feb 21, 2020, 8:49pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: PIC S1: Stardust City Rag

@Brian

"That decision (though) did not have to succeed. I think I remember someone calling it "catching lightning in a bottle". That is rare. Basically, the success of TNG was practically an accident. No one really knows exactly what made it work. So what did they do? Well, they thought they could do it again with a completely different cast and so forth and it has been less successful (and palatable) each time. "

If TNG came out during the age of the Internet, the fans would have torn it to shreds. Fans who grew up on Kirk and Spock and McCoy and brought Star Trek back from the dead sitting down to Encounter at Farpoint, Naked Now and Code of Honor? We're on episode five of Picard, so they'd be up to that wonderful episode, The Last Outpost, with the introduction of the killer Ferengi.

TNG today is colored by nostalgia. We all grew up on it and watched it with our parents. We introduced it to our kids who watched it new like we watched TOS. It reminds us of being teenagers. We flocked to message boards to hear spoilers of how they'd resolve the cliffhanger, and we likely complained quite a bit about it.

Off topic, but another reason Disco and Picard feel different? I grew up on 90s Trek. It was on the air from September to May. It ran the school year. I spent summers out and about and catching up on spoilers when I could. It was a weekly constant, whether reruns or original episodes. In those bloated 26 episode seasons, even in bad, repetitive episodes, there were a few scenes here and there that developed characters.

Today, Disco and Picard are 10-15 episode events. They're over in two or three months. By the time they come back, I need a recap video to remind me what happened last season because it might have been 15 months since I last watched.
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Ryan
Fri, Feb 21, 2020, 8:43pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: PIC S1: Stardust City Rag

@MadManMUC

"I was easily able to rail against STD on a weekly basis. I can't with this thing, I just don't have the energy anymore.

Kurtzman broke me. Trek is dead and long gone."

This problem has been around since the 90s. Fans complained Star Trek was being ruined by Braga and Berman and was bland and repetitive and trying to appeal to a mass male audience with catsuits and high heels, and if only the true fans could shell out $20 a month, we could have Trek for the fans, and no one would complain."

Very simple solution. Stop watching. Why on Earth would you have watched 30 episodes of Discovery if you hate it? If Picard isn't your thing, simply stop watching. Whatever any producer does in any decade, rest assured, fans will bemoan that they hate it, and will complain every week for seven years.

Break the cycle.
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Ryan
Sun, Feb 16, 2020, 1:42pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: PIC S1: Absolute Candor

@John Harmon

“ I think I hate this show. It’s bad on its own merits, and I’m confident the only reason people are still watching is because it has the name Star Trek and it has Picard in it even if they don’t realize that’s why.”

With all due respect, if you hate the show and continue to watch and post about it, that’s your business, but kindly don’t tell me that I’m not intelligent enough to realize why I watch it.
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Bryan
Sun, Feb 9, 2020, 2:21pm (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DSC S2: Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2

Also, a bit of fridge logic just struck me.

Does Saru owe Captain Pike an apology for what happened on Kaminar?

In "The Sound of Thunder", Saru sweeps away Pike's caution that altering the Klepian population's evolution may result in a violent revolution. Basically Saru says, "Just trust me, or at least trust that a more optimistic outcome is possible." And because Captain Pike is Captain Pike, he goes along with it.

And yet, when the cavalry arrives in "Such Sweet Sorrow Part 2" we see Klepians flying Ba'ul ships, which should be as shocking as it is horrific. Because the show never revisited Kaminar, and the last act we witness is the Ba'ul attempt mass genocide of the Klepians, it's safe to assume that the Ba'ul didn't just peacefully hand over their ships, and this should portent to a darker reality than what Saru promised.
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Bryan
Fri, Feb 7, 2020, 6:56am (UTC -5) | 🔗
Re: DSC S2: Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2

Fantastic visuals, great action, and each character has their moment to shine.

Captain Pike: "Launch all starfighters-- I mean shuttles!"

Saru: "Engineering, you're not building fast enough! Raise snark to 98%!"

Georgiou: "Shit! I forgot how to math."

Spock: "There is no time for debate! And I have plot armor."

Cornwell: "The secondary detonation of this slowpedo has already been triggered. I estimate we have until the end of the season before it takes out half the ship!"

Culber: "Oh, right, I'm supposed to be in sickbay."

Tyler: *shouts orders in Klingon* (..wait, to the Klingon Empire, isn't he's supposed to be a disgraced beheaded traitor...?)

Cornwell: "Your story isn't over yet, and I think you know that."
Captain Pike: "Well, if I'm meant to be a disfigured paraplegic..."

-------

Overall, my thoughts about this season of DSC are complicated and conflicted. Perhaps it is appropriate to defer to the wisdom of Spock, who speaks with greater eloquence than I; to paraphrase:

"All people with knowledge of season 2 must be ordered never to speak of DSC, it's plot, or it's characters, ever again, under penalty of treason against Star Trek."



And in Tyler news:

"Well... since Section 31 is now a write-off, all its officers are missing or dead, and you've done absolutely nothing.....congratulations, Tyler, you win Section 31!"
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