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Springy
Tue, Oct 15, 2019, 11:18pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Allegiance

Watching and commenting

--Picard gets xeroxed. Yuh-oh.

--He's being kept in a box and fed cherry jello discs.

--Xerox-Picard acting just ever so slightly off, takes them off course.

--"STOP, we mean you no harm!!!" Some really, really hokey dialogue in the box.

--Xerox Picard asks Beverly to dinner. Intimate dinner. In his quarters. Low lighting. Sexy clothes. Sexy talk. Romantic music. The old "would you care to dance" maneuver . . . a kiss, followed by . . . showing Beverly the door. Beverly looks mystified. Don't try to figure out, Bev.

--Xerox-Picard seeming less and less like the original, as he sings in Ten Forward. Riker is suspicious.

--Lots of boring, badly written, predictable dialogue in the box.

--The part on The Enterprise is definitely more interesting, as we learn a bit about how the crew sees their Captain.

--The "we're in a lab, being studied," solution very hokey and reminiscent of an old Twilight Zone.

Prisons: Self made, other-made.

Allegiance? The captors say they're studying leadership - leaders and followers, how it all works. I suppose the ep is meant to study that too? What allegiance costs, and demands of, both leaders and followers, what its limits are, how priorities are established.

I wonder what they were studying by asking Beverly to dinner?

Some nice moments, but below average overall.
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Springy
Mon, Oct 14, 2019, 10:20pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Sins of the Father

Watching and commenting:

--Kurn!! I like Kurn. Instead of "Engage," he says "Execute!" Perfect.

--Picard sure can slice a turkey! I'm going to invite him to my Thanksgiving this year. Please pass the potatoes, Jean Luc.

--Great scene between Worf and Kurn as Kurn makes his revelation. But I have to say, it's hard to believe Worf, at the age of five, wouldn't remember he had little brother. But I will accept it.

--Picard makes a wonderful gesture, going with Worf to the Great Hall.

--Duras. Such a slimy guy.

--"It is a good day to die." Such a useful quote. I like to pepper it into my conversation whenever possible. I need to go to the BMV this week. Maybe I'll have an opportunity there.

--Nice bonding and development of Picard and Worf's relationship.

--Lots of references to who's in charge, who's got the power. And lots of references to the past, what can be left behind, and what cannot - what is dead, and what is not, what is unchanging, what has a lasting impact, and what is lost.

--Worf makes a huge sacrifice for his brother.

Nicely done.
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(Off)Springy
Mon, Oct 14, 2019, 9:27pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Offspring

A solid episode.

I liked the beginning, everyone's reaction when they see The Child, and Picard trying to explain his concern to Data is priceless. Spiner and Stewart are great.

Does the crew generally consult Picard before they procreate? I bet they don't, Data.

Picard and Data reminds me of Janeway and the Doctor - yes, the Captains acknowledge the sentience and indulgence and rights of their non-biological crewmen, but not really. Not completely. Not wholeheartedly.

The Riker business in Ten Forward was a great little lighthearted interlude. Wouldn't want Data to miss out on the "dealing with Lotharios" aspect of raising a daughter.

The ep hammers the importance of relationships, connections, when it comes to "being human/truly alive." At a micro-level, literal connections form in Lal's brain, at a macro level we watch the connections amongst the crew (we open with closed-up-in-his-lab Data finally letting his friends in on his little secret, as doors open and shut. Lal asks about everyone's coverings, and we get repeated references in the ep, to sharing our inner lives, to connecting to others). And we watch the connection form between Data and Lal.

In doing this, the ep also explores the definition of love. Data's attentive, concerned, protective actions toward Lal has Dr Crusher believing he loves Lal. Is love ultimately defined by, expressed by, actions?

There's something else we're hitting on here: What did Worf tell Q, when Q asked what he had to do, to prove he was human? DIE.

A lot of nice little moments, well done. A bit too low key for me to think of it as a classic, but definitely a good one.
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Springy
Sat, Oct 12, 2019, 9:49pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Yesterday's Enterprise

Masterful.

Some truly wonderful performances, Whoopi, Patrick and the actress playing Captain Garrick, especially. Crosby was good, too.

The quickie romance was done about as well as it could be - the extraordinary life-and-death circumstances and low key presentation made it believable and engaging (instead of nauseating, as in many the quickie ST romance).

Though I gotta say, that actor playing Castillo looks so much like Joe Piscopo that I kept flashing back to Piscopo's awful turn as Data's comedy mentor. Yeeeeee.

Loved the scene in the ready room when Picard tells then he's sending The Enterprise C back - fantastic camera work as we slowly pan through the players. The mood setting throughout was excellent. Perfect.

Sadness. Sweetness. Right and wrong. Terror. Determination. Courage. Confidence. Sacrifice. Leadership. Trust.

Time - lives so predetermined, so tethered, yet so completely malleable and free. So, so short.

The quest for meaning and purpose in this well ordered, yet wholly random, Universe.

The balance of instinct and intellect - so hard to do right, but so important to do right.

The ending, as they fought off the Klingons and Geordi cleared everyone out of engineering, had my heart pounding and tears in my eyes. It didn't matter that I'd seen this one before, and I remember how it ended.

Good stuff - a classic!
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Springy
Sat, Oct 12, 2019, 7:11pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: A Matter of Perspective

@Peter G

Love your comparison of the paintings to the versions of what happened in Riker's room (and @Chrome, your addition was great).

If I remember right, they were three paintings, and three story versions - if I had to pick which story was analogous to Picard's painting, I'd say the last one - it's the last one examined, as is Picard's painting. And it's the least believable/most distorted one. (The story told by the assistant that includes the "You're a dead man!!")
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Springy
Fri, Oct 11, 2019, 10:46pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: A Matter of Perspective

Watching and commenting:

--Well, we're clued off right away from the title and Data's funny critique of Picard's artwork, that this ep is about individual perspective.

--OK, is this the one about the woman/wife who accuses Riker of being inappropriate with her? I hope not. I remember it fairly well, and remember that I did not like it.

--Yes, it is that ep, isn't it? And now I don't feel like watching. But I'm too much of a tight-a** to skip any eps on a rewatch.

--Pretty bored, but it's hard to judge this fairly when my boredom could be in part due to remembering this fairly well, so - no suspense.

--Just kind of silly and unoriginal - the premise (literally showing us their separate perspectives), the technobabble from Geordi and Data (the holodeck did what??), the psychobabble from Troi (both are reporting their memories completely honestly??).

Little to recommend this one. Below average, and very, very skippable.
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Springy
Wed, Oct 9, 2019, 11:36pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Deja Q

Loved it.

I knew I was in for a fun time after this bit:

Q (insisting he's human): What must I do to convince you people???
WORF: Die.

Perfection. Lots of boring preachy dialogue not necessary (or optimal) for getting a point across.

What it means to be human. How best to be human. Selflessness, morality. Happiness, laughter, suffering, tears. Oww!!

It's all there in the ep, all without lectures from Picard.

The dialogue was snappy, the performances were great, the story engaging. Having Data act as a foil for depressed-human Q was pure genius.

John de Lancie at his peak.

The planet is saved; Q is saved.

Q's in his Continuum and all's right with the Galaxy.
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Springy
Mon, Oct 7, 2019, 11:20pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The High Ground

Awful.

Talk, talk, talk, talk, talk.

This is the third time in very recent memory that we're looking at an ep about rebels/outsiders fighting the good fight (or is it good?) against evil oppressors (or are they evil?).

We had the older lady with the pretty young servant (being hit on by Riker), negotiating with wayward outsiders; We had the last ep, with the no longer useful soldiers escaping their bonds; and now we have this.

Boring, talky, talky, talky.

Please Beverly, don't develop Stockholm Syndrome. Hmm. Looks like Finn has developed reverse-Stockholm Syndrome. He's been drawing The Bev with a great deal of thoughtfulness and tenderness.

Music overdone.

Hokey scene where Crusher tells Picard that there are things she's always wanted to tell him, and she wants to say them now, since they may not survive. With the subtly and sophistication of an episode of "Saved By The Bell," this ep then gives us an immediate, amazingly-timed intrusion, and the moment is entirely lost.

I just want this to be over.

I do like the mother and child reunion.

Average ep, brought down to below average by my weariness with this theme and approach. I get it. People mistreat people in this imperfect galaxy and The Enterprise is a force for goodness in same. Let's move on.
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Springy
Mon, Oct 7, 2019, 8:19pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Hunted

Eh. Can definitely take or leave this one.

I think a five year old can figure out the moral of the story - no subtly at all. Also, pretty dull. There's action, but the action is repetitive and uninteresting.

Not a favorite. Passable.
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Springy
Sat, Oct 5, 2019, 5:13am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Defector

Very well done.

Really kept me interested. Tons of good suspense.

Great performances, good writing, the final confrontation was absolutely brilliant.

The very end was the only slight disappointment I experienced. The suicide made sense and I expected it, it was the unabashed characterization of the General, by Picard, as a brave hero, that didn't quite sit right with me. I mean, he was, and he wasn't, a hero. I didn't feel like Picard knew enough about him for such a declaration.

The episode hit heavily on loyalties and connections and responsibilities, and on things being hidden, i.e., not what they seemed to be. The Shakespeare fit right in, giving us a direct clue that the Romulan was a "king" in disguise.
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Springy
Thu, Oct 3, 2019, 9:47pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Enemy

@Skeptical

Interesting thoughts! My take:

I think the Klingons are quite deliberately shown as much more in touch with their animal side, much more id, than ego.

We see Vulcans often struggling to trust their instincts/emotions, or to ever let their animal side take over - the Klingons struggle in the opposite direction. They struggle to keep their animal side at bay and allow logic and reason to play a role.

Klingon or Vulcan (or humans who are in between and struggle in both ways, depending on their individual make up)
it's always about finding the right mix in the right time . . . knowing when to go with your gut, and knowing when to harness it and go with your brain, and knowing when to go with some delicate balance of each.

The Klingon tendency to allow the animal-side to easily take over sometimes costs them - gets them into avoidable trouble and such. The Vulcan tendency to allow Reason to reign supreme in all circumstances sometimes causes them unnecessary problems and heartache, too.

Though not each and every situation or bit of dialogue may be intentionally set up to further this, I do think that overall the set up, with the Klingons representing instinct/id, is intentional.
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Springy
Thu, Oct 3, 2019, 9:13pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Vengeance Factor

Last ep, Deanna romance, this ep, Riker romance - even less believable or interesting.

Did not like the ep. The technobabble about microviruses and the clans and the unlikely negotiations and the barely plausible motivation for our ageless murderer (one gets the idea the age-slowing was introduced just to allow her to be young and pretty for Riker) . . . just all very contrived from beginning to end, especially distraught and disturbed Riker at the end.

Ugh. Very little redeeming value here. I guess the moral of the story is that devoting your life to vengeance is bad. You have to put up with being a servant to cranky older ladies and your romances really go south.
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Springy
Wed, Oct 2, 2019, 8:02am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Price

Lord, that's supposed to say the "negotiations/wormhole *stuff*" in my comment above. Not *stupid*.

The introduction of the Ferenghi was silly, but I liked how Voyager picked up on it, later.

Anyhow, I wanted to comment on the title, The Price - pretty clever, as it refers to the obvious negotiations, and to other, more subtle prices paid - how everything is always an exchange.

You have to give up Earth for peace of mind. Give up your traveling companion to seduce Troi. Give up any chance of a continuing relationship to continue with your present life. Etc. There are really constant mentions of this throughout the ep - what you pay, what you accept, what you receive in exchange.
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Springy
Wed, Oct 2, 2019, 7:30am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Price

Some good elements, the negotiations/poker stupid was sorta interesting, as was the wormhole.

The Troi story really suffered from horrible casting. The actor wasn't bad, so much as he didn't fit the role. There was zero chemistry between the actors, and he just came off as.super- creepy when he started touching her hair.

They didn't try to sell it as true, deep love, which I give them credit for. I hate when the characters are madly, throw their lives away, in love in an hour or two. But still, it didn't even work as instant, strong , natural attraction.

Mostly an average episode, brought down by the creepy.
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Springy
Wed, Oct 2, 2019, 12:46am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Enemy

Good one.

More traps and power struggles - this time, Geordi falls down into a hole. Where's Lassie when you need her?

More good character development for Geordi.

Loved the Worf stuff. Loved how he stood firm, and how Picard refused to order him to help the Romulan. Great twist when the dying Romulan told Worf he didn't want his disgusting Klingon help.

I think we're meant to compare and contrast "Worf with Romulan 1" and "Geordi with Romulan 2. " Adaptability, compromise, trust, reason.

Nice performances, nice look at the Romulans - The Enemy. What are they up to, anyhow?
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Springy
Mon, Sep 30, 2019, 1:23pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Booby Trap

Oh - I meant to add - I am always posting about the meaning of the titles, and I thought "The Survivors" title emphasized the concept of survivor's guilt, which is very much a part of the ep.

And then "Who Watches the Watchers" - the ep is all about God, IMO. Is there a God? The Watchers (the Federation) is trying to benignly stay out of the affairs of the less advanced culture . . . kinda like God giving humans free will. Though it makes definitive statements about superstition, it doesn't really touch on spirituality, which after all, modern-day Vulcans did not abandon. So who is Watching the Watchers? Is there a God?


And then "The Bonding" I suppose is about those things that bind us - family ties, friendships, shared experiences . . .

Now this ep - I'm just gonna let this ep tittle - uh, I mean title - slide on by.
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Springy
Mon, Sep 30, 2019, 1:12pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Booby Trap

Hmmm. Not a great, but a good one.

I think what I liked best was Picard's boyish interest in the ancient ship, and I loved the scene at the transporter, where Picard is trying to get others to understand building ships in a bottle as a boy, and Worf says he didn't play with toys as a boy, and Data says he was never a boy. LOL. Riker is clueless. O'Brien to the rescue, though. He gets it.

It fits in with the ep's theme about real/unreal relationships, the blurred lines, trying to connect with those different from you. Picard connects with a Captain, 1,000 years dead, the member of another species - but has trouble connecting with Riker. Etc.

There's the repeated mention of a ship in a bottle - a trap. You build something you can't touch. It's trapped under glass. Just lots of isolation vs connection imagery.

Geordi's best friend is an android, and now his girl friend is a computer. Oh, Geordi.

He manages to connect with Guinan, though - and I suppose "being your natural self is the best way to grow as a person and connect with others" is the overall theme of the ep. Technology is a tool to enhance your life, not to substitute for it.

I liked getting to know Geordi a bit better.
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Springy
Mon, Sep 30, 2019, 11:16am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Bonding

Another average ep.

Story was acceptably engaging, though not exactly full of action/adventure.

The Worf part was the best part, but I know that we never see Jeremy again.

Troi spoon-feeding Jeremy about how he must be feeling about Worf (he must also be angry at Worf, since Wes was angry at Picard) was quite annoying toward the end. She needs to go back to Counselor School. Don't they have professionals consulting on these scripts?

We were spoon fed the moral of the story as well: Better to face reality (both inner and outer) and experience a real life, accepting the joys and sorrows - than to fool yourself with rose-colored glasses.

So, I accept this ep as the mediocre offering it is, and grieve the hour I have lost.

Onward.
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Springy
Mon, Sep 30, 2019, 11:07am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Who Watches the Watchers

Pretty average offering.

The best part was when Nuria was on the ship, though there was some contrivance in that, when she suddenly "didn't get it," forcing some more drama - as there was throughout. Still - nothing unusual or unacceptable.

Lots of eps in a row about power, who has the power, the use of power. Last ep, our alien was The God, this ep Picard is (sorta) The God.

Decent ep, mostly decent performances. I liked the sci-fi notion of the observers.
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Springy
Sun, Sep 29, 2019, 10:28pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Ensigns of Command

@William B

Thank you!

It did not occur to me that the whole phrase might be a reference to something.

Yes, it definitely fits.
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Springy
Sun, Sep 29, 2019, 10:22pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Survivors

Love this one.

The guest stars really make the ep: They are perfection. Anderson at the end, with his confession: Excellent! And Haney as Rishon who is not quite Rishon . . . exquisite.

Kevin refuses to kill as a matter of principle, but kills 50 billion when he gets hurt and angry. Scary. Weird! One might expect a little more emotional maturity from an ancient being. Was this his first experience with unexpected, emotionally crippling loss? Maybe so.

There's a kind of fragility that comes with great power, with never knowing failure or loss.

I think in Troi's outward suffering, we are meant to see Kevin's inner suffering - from the loss of Rishon but also from his guilt over his crime, and guilt over not saving Rishon and the others. It plagues him, it is a constant refrain. He tries to find relief by recreating his life with Rishon, but in doing so, he has sprung the trap on himself: she isn't really Rishon, and on Rana, he will live a life of unending loneliness.

He couldn't fake out the Husnok; he couldn't fake out Picard. He's not faking himself out, either. Not really.

What does Picard say: "I do not know if he should be praised or condemned--only that he should be left alone."

And left alone he is: Very, very alone. For eternity.
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Springy
Sun, Sep 29, 2019, 8:28pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Ensigns of Command

Just had to add, talk about your strange titles!

I looked up the definition of ensign:

ensign:

--a flag or banner, as a military or naval standard used to indicate nationality.

--a badge of office or authority, as heraldic arms.

--a sign, token, or emblem: "the dove, an ensign of peace."

--U.S. Navy and Coast Guard. the lowest commissioned officer, ranking next below a lieutenant, junior grade, and equal to a second lieutenant in the Army.

--Archaic: standard-bearer

Ok, well I'm going with emblem. Symbols of Command.

The ep definitely had a lot going on when it comes to who's in charge, who's got the power at any given moment. I suppose the title is connected to that.
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Springy
Fri, Sep 27, 2019, 10:02pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Ensigns of Command

Eh. Average at best.

Ambitious, but doesn't get there.

Good character development for Data.

Clever ending for the Picard plot line.

And I'm all for suspending disbelief when needed, but if I'm gonna do that, I'll need some better reward than this ep provides.

I did love the Sheliak, but the business on the planet was just really hard to swallow and not well conceived or performed.
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Springy
Sun, Sep 22, 2019, 10:13pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: It's Only a Paper Moon

Heard about Aron's death earlier today and wanted to write a tribute to him on the thread of my favorite Nog ep.

He was a great performer. He worked magic with the character of Nog. Nog was an annoying, often inconsiderate, sometimes unethical, usually sexist, little twerp. Yet he wasn't. Yet I was interested in him, and I rooted for him. Because he was those things, but he was so much more than just those things.

This episode - if anyone had told me a holodeck ep, centered on a Ferenghi, would be one of my favorites of the series, I would never have believed it.

I know the writers and directors and the others actors all did their parts, of course, but in the hands of a lesser talent, a lesser light, than Aron Eisenberg, Nog would have been a bust who would have mercifully faded away by Season 3.

RIP, Aron, and thanks for the memories.
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Springy
Mon, Sep 16, 2019, 9:51pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Evolution

Really boring.

Eggs and mothers and reproduction . . . they're going for something here, but it's hard to care.

Did not like it at all. Dull, nutty technonabble, sorta preachy . . . some nice special effects, though.

Onto episode 2 with hopes the rest of the season will be better.
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