Comment Stream

Search and bookmark options Close
Search for:
Search by:
Clear bookmark | How bookmarks work
Note: Bookmarks are ignored for all search results

Total Found: 131 (Showing 1-25)

Next ►Page 1 of 6
Set Bookmark
Steven
Sat, Feb 16, 2019, 12:12pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Saints of Imperfection

I think it’s a bit of misstep to bring Culber back. Not because I don’t like the character, he was one of the better parts of S1. But my problem is it cuts into the “anyone can die” feeling this series had. Part of what was good last episode with Saru nearly dying was, because Discovery has staked itself as a series not afraid to piss off the audience with big risky decisions like killing regulars off, Saru dying felt like it might be on the table. Now that’s kind of gone and we’re getting this sort of “It’s okay we’ll wish them back with the dragonballs” type of resolution.

Now, to be totally fair, Landry and O’Connell are still dead, as is Lorca (but you never know). And Discovery isn’t the first Trek to do this (Spock, Data, Dax, Sisko?!, Kirk in STID). I just hope this doesn’t become a continuing pattern because Death is Cheap is a rotten soap opera gimmick.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Fri, Feb 15, 2019, 9:04am (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: An Obol for Charon

Great review, Jammer. I too don’t really need an explanation for every technical difference from this show and the other shows. I would rather they cut that in favor of details contributing to main story they’re trying to tell.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Mon, Feb 11, 2019, 4:15pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: An Obol for Charon

You're talking about a continuation of the same engagement. The ships didn't pull away and declare a cease-fire.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Mon, Feb 11, 2019, 4:04pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: An Obol for Charon

Jason R., forget criminal law. Imagine if a foreign warship sailed in proximity of Rockall (UK territorial waters) and started jamming English radio signals. The Royal Navy came to investigate it but her crew was assaulted by people on the warship. Wouldn't there be a pretty heavy case that the Royal navy had a right to retaliate with deadly force?
Set Bookmark
Steven
Sun, Feb 10, 2019, 4:34pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: An Obol for Charon

I agree it comes down to balancing the interests and in the end we don’t really have enough information to make the best decision. I think we’re supposed to believe Burnham *did* have all the information and she was willing to commit the ritual but still hesitant because it clashed with her personal beliefs.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Sun, Feb 10, 2019, 3:41pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: An Obol for Charon

But Yair, you’re skipping over the part where even in the best case scenario Saru’s rights are violated. This is something Picard understood about Worf and the Klingons and it’s not something to just gloss over.

So maybe Saru survives but remembers being sedated and he realizes Starfleet didn’t care what he wanted. He goes back to his people and tells them Starfleet can’t always be trusted and suddenly that First Contact the Fedration is hoping for is off the table.

Now, I’m not saying all these things will happen for certain mind you, I just point out the dangers in being cavilier about individual rights.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Sun, Feb 10, 2019, 3:03pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: An Obol for Charon

@Yair

Good points, but I think saving Saru “for the mission” doesn’t really apply here. One important factor that differntiates Saru from say B’Elanna is that no one in Starfleet appears to know much about Kelpian physiology (they’re a pre-First Contact race) and Saru is a lone refugee. So, even assuming stasis could save Saru someday in the long run, he would be out of commission - certainly for the remainder of this mission - and perhaps years more for Starfleet to figure out how to treat Kelpians in this condition. So I don’t think exigency is a workable justification to violate a species’ rights here.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Sun, Feb 10, 2019, 2:03pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: An Obol for Charon

@Yair

That thing with that argument is even though soldiers do give up some freedoms from serving they retain certain civil rights that need to be respected by their commander. A commanding officer cannot, for example, order a woman serving under them to get an abortion because pregnancy would interfere with her duty.

Of course we don’t know Starfleet rules so we can’t say for certain what rights are protected or not and you could be correct. But respecting someone’s control over their body seems like a more respectful, more Trek way of handling it, at least in my opinion.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Sun, Feb 10, 2019, 1:16pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: An Obol for Charon

No, Madman, you really should watch it again (or even read the transcript). The thing with “Ethics” was that Picard was willing to let Worf commit ritual suicide. It’s not that he condoned suicide per se, it’s that he respected Worf’s beliefs and one of those beliefs was that living crippled is worse than death for a Klingon. Sisko intervenes in DS9, true, but the solution is horrific as it effectively ends Kurn’s life as Kurn (without consent).

Here, Saru has his own death ritual to give him a dignified end before he goes *mentally insane* and dies anyway. They don’t get into it, but an insane person is most certainly a danger to the crew. What was really the choice here? Does anyone think putting Saru in stasis *against his will* until they find a cure or something is an enlightened way of handling the situation?
Set Bookmark
Steven
Sat, Feb 9, 2019, 6:33pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: An Obol for Charon

@brian

Stargazer was referring specifically to critics as in people like Jammer. Indeed your source, Metacritic, lists 0 negative critic reviews for Discovery.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Sat, Feb 9, 2019, 5:42pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S7: Badda-Bing, Badda-Bang

@Booming

I’m not taking a side on that issue. I’m sure people will and have argued that in the 90s this white/black message was timely. Nevertheless, it hits a different distinctly different note than the Human/Cardassaian one. I hope you can appreciate the difference and I apologize if I’m not being clear somehow.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Sat, Feb 9, 2019, 5:22pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S7: Badda-Bing, Badda-Bang

The O’Brien-Cardassian-racism comparison is a false one, anyway. There, O’Brien’s racism is allegorical, so it appeals to every viewer and every viewer can appreciate the situation on some level.

Sisko’s complaint about racism here is specifically a black issue with certain real-world repercussions, i.e. white people should feel guilty about the past. Effectively, it’s a message that divides the audience.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Sat, Feb 9, 2019, 7:28am (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S2: All the World Is Birthday Cake

It was an entertaining episode, but there's no way the planet's leaders would just let Kelly and Bortus go, after they murdered loads of their people.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Wed, Feb 6, 2019, 4:02pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Point of Light

To be fair, the events of "Profit and Lace" did bleed over into future Ferengi storylines and "Profit and Lace" itself was a continuation of the less-than-stellar "Ferengi Love Songs".
Set Bookmark
Steven
Tue, Feb 5, 2019, 2:39pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Point of Light

I too have given up on the show, and it's free to watch on Netflix. I'm still watching The Orville and I hope the Picard spin-off is good.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Tue, Feb 5, 2019, 9:12am (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Point of Light

@Artymiss

14. I’m curious who’s directing next week, though. Has that info been released?
Set Bookmark
Steven
Mon, Feb 4, 2019, 5:00am (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Point of Light

Do people seriously think - the many, dislike this show because of skin colour or women in command? Or diversity? Hmm, maybe some bigoted idiots think like that, but the majority of us are moaning about the show because it's painfully mediocre! DISCO is slow with bad casting and poor characters (for the most part.) The only thing Discovery has going for it, is its incredible visuals (not just for a TV show, but movie quality visuals.) And Pike... And yes, Pike is a white male, but it's the actor, the actor has presence! Ala Patrick Stewart. He is perfectly cast.

Michael isn't clicking with the audience for whatever reason. Maybe it's the actress or the writing or both. Maybe it's because Sonequa Martin-Green always looks miserable. She might have been on The Walking Dead for too long, same expression.

This show needs more hope, more idealism, more exploring, more fun! It doesn't need to be so po-faced all the time. It needs to explore its cast more and give us a reason to root for them. For example: what do we know about the officer with the metal attachment on her face? Nothing! I don't even know / remember her name. There is very little character development and the entire thing has the wrong tone. It's far too serious which often comes across as incoherent in its techno babble / boring.

I really hope the Stewart spin-off is better than this. Then again, it has Stewart.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Sat, Feb 2, 2019, 9:37am (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S2: Nothing Left on Earth Excepting Fishes

Two stars is a little harsh. This was a decent episode (maybe not as good as Home), certainly better than the opening two. It was entertaining throughout and dare I say it - intelligent, with a plot that went from A to B, and a satisfying conclusion.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Wed, Apr 11, 2018, 10:10pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: The Mind's Eye

About Sela - I concur, I've always found her backstory to be extremely weird. She's just 22 years old, but a commander? Any why does she look exactly like her mother? We've seen Trek actors play their own relatives before, but there were usually hundreds of years in between - think of Brent Spiner on "Enterprise".

I know that a core story to define her was how she betrayed her own mother, when she was still a small child, and told the guards that her mother was trying to flee, getting her own mother killed. That's a strong backstory, to point out how this child was brainwashed into thinking like a Romulan from her earliest days. But still... it doesn't go well with being played by the same actress.

I would have made Sela an actual clone of Tasha instead - with no Romulan DNA involved. Effectively, she would've been like Shinzon from the Nemesis movie. Now, I don't really like that movie, but the concept of a clone as such is a good one: You have exactly the same person, from a genetic perspective, just raised in another environment, and you see that beloved person grow up to be evil. I feel this is how the Sela actor should've been done; it just would've made more sense. It could also have explained why Tasha looked older than 22; the clone could've gone through an accelerated growth.

I think the clone should've been created AFTER Tasha's execution, by her husband, in order to replace her with a more loyal version. That would've been genuinely eerie. So yeah, the writers kind of created a sub-par backstory for Sela. It could've been better.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Wed, Apr 11, 2018, 9:25pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: Night Terrors

> I watched this episode back to back recently with Schisms and I find Night Terrors to be by far the better episode. In fact, I find the episode has really held its own over the years and remains a creepy, unsettling outing even now. My rating would be 3.5 stars.

I guess this is exactly where we differ. I see it just the other way around. The idea that aliens are experimenting on you, severing your bones, possibly injecting you with mind-altering substances etc. and you wake up the next morning, unsettled, but unknowing of what went on, is true horror to me.

"Night Terrors" on the other hand didn't have any substance; there was no real danger, the horror didn't have a face. The horror remains extremely abstract, being a vague "fear of a mental breakdown", while the crew cognitively knows that actually NOTHING is going on. They should KNOW that it's all just in their heads (because Beverly discovers the medical condition early enough, and by that point the whole crew would be informed). How is it interesting for the audience to watch people battle NO ACTUAL ENEMY? Well, it isn't.

I just fail to see how "Night Terrors" constitutes "good horror". Sure, the idea to lose your cognitive abilities is very frightening - and in one of the few good scenes of the episode, Picard talks about how one of his relatives lost his mental capabilities when he grew old and turned into a fragile shell of a man. This struck the right cord, and the episode should have been developed more along those lines. Forget all the stupid horror and paranoia stuff; if the episode had shown us how everyone turned into imbeciles (hard to act, admittedly), it would have realized its potential.

The episode should have been more about the fear of turning into an invalid person, and much much less about paranoia and violence.

Concept/Potential: 3.5 stars
Execution: 1 star
Set Bookmark
Steven
Wed, Apr 11, 2018, 8:57pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: Night Terrors

This is one of the TNG episodes that I dread the most. It just has too many flaws to be any good.

- First of all, I am not a horror fan, in general. I am just bored by scenes like the one where dead bodies are sitting upright in the morgue. It's like watching a C-grade horror flick.

- More importantly, I just don't think that becoming anxious and paranoid is a logical consequence of getting no REM sleep. It doesn't ring true. I believe that people who are seriously deprived of REM sleep will become extremely passive and "psychologically broken". They won't be able to do much of anything. I once stayed up for like 60 hours and simply was a wreck. Patrick Steward is the only actor who gets it right in this episode: He has serious concentration difficulties, all his mental abilities are coming apart.

I guess my main problem with this episode is that I don't buy into the notion that "the whole crew will kill each other like on the Brittain". REM deprivation just doesn't lead to this. I find it utterly unbelievable.

And the whole trope is worn out anyway. Didn't the crew in "The Naked Now" (season 1) kill each other as well? And wasn't it done on TOS, too? In each of those instances, it was far more believable that the crew would turn violent.

So my beef with this episode is that everyone acted like they're in a run-of-the-mill "crew turning violent" episode (also thinking of Genesis from season 7 here, which had a higher sense of danger to me, even though its premise sucked), although all of them should have acted simply like they're losing their cognitive abilities and turning in some sort of imbeciles or autists. This episode was a misfire. Troi flying didn't convey a huge sense of horror either, because Marina Sirtis played too stiffly. Honestly, the only thing that saves the episode is the clever resolution that the aliens were trying to communicate what they need all along.

2 stars, objectively, although subjectively it's one of my most dreaded stories and I want to give it a lower score.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Fri, Mar 16, 2018, 6:34pm (UTC -6)
Re: ENT S2: Vanishing Point

This episode seems to be very divisive. People either enjoyed it or felt that it was a boring rehash of older Trek. I count myself among the latter group.

Please let me add a few points to the discussion, to explain why I feel that the episode was crafted poorly - although the main idea was a good one and could've served to characterize Hoshi better.

One problem was that everyone who has a good knowledge of Star Trek will figure out rather quickly what's going on: Like so many people before her, Hoshi is trapped in some sort of illusion (possibly inside her own mind) and probably just needs to wake up. That's what I assumed, and eventually it turned out that I wasn't very far off.

I was immediately reminded of TNG's "Remember Me", in which Dr Crusher fears that everyone around her vanishes without leaving a trace - and her worries turn into a reality. The difference here is that it is not her surroundings, but Hoshi herself that vanishes. But it became clearly pretty early on that, like Dr Crusher, Hoshi was caught in a universe governed by her own mind (her own fears), so it either had to be a parallel universe created by the transporter (unlikely, seemed a bit too far fetched) or Hoshi had to simply be hallucinating the whole thing.

So far, so obvious. Having that figured out without any effort, the pacing of the episode is just off: It is much too slow and boring. The real insult to the audience is though that Hoshi doesn't have to figure anything out. In ANY other similar story, the unconscious character always had to find a way to free themselves:

- Dr Crusher had to realize she was in a parallel universe, in order to escape
- Geordi and Ro Laren had to find a way to de-phase themselves and return to the normal universe ("The Next Phase")
- Dr Bashir had to fight against the deterioration of his mind, in order to stay alive and ultimately wake up (in an early DS9 episode in which he got wounded by a dangerous weapon and felt in a coma)
- The Holo Doctor had to determine whether he was a hologram or a real person (Louis Zimmerman) in Voyager's "Projections"

So the established pattern is, for me, that the captured protagonist has to figure out the reality of his situation in order to escape from it. THAT'S what brings excitement into the story. This episode here was lacking any of that: Hoshi never figured out anything, she was just "along for the ride". She still had no idea what was going on when she was rematerialized. And as other people have pointed out, she sleep-walked through the plot in the sense that she just brushed away things that didn't make sense, such as why another crewmember was suddenly able to break a code that she couldn't. She didn't investigate.

I am sorry, but this episode totally failed for me to shed more light on Hoshi's character - all it did was to make her look stupid. And good character work was the only justification to have this episode in the first place. The main plot was just lame, if you knew it was a hallucination. The ONLY job that this episode had was to be a solid character piece, and it wasn't.

Seems like Hoshi wasn't the only one sleepwalking here. The storywriter was too.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Mon, Feb 26, 2018, 7:32pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

So that you don't misunderstand me: I get the idea that Michael was supposed to make mistakes in the pilot, so that she could "redeem" herself later. That was an important development for her character. However, what they needed to do is to have Michael make bad decisions that the audience could actually sympathize with. Decisions that didn't make the viewer hate her. Frankly, by the end of the pilot, I was *satisfied* to see her thrown into prison and I couldn't care less about what would happen to her. I basically wanted to switch to another character and never hear of Michael Burnham again. Now, by the end of the season, I've finally come to find her bearable; that's the most positive thing I can say about the character.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Mon, Feb 26, 2018, 7:14pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

>> "I guess the bottom line, for me at least, is that DSC is at least taking chances and trying a relatively creative approach to Sci-Fi storytelling."

> "I think it's an old hat approach at this point. To be frank, telling one-off serialized stories would have been the marketing risk, since the most popular shows now are all serialized. And by the way, I'm not dissing that, I had no problem with the idea of DISC being serialized. My problem as I now define it is that their method of doing so is just to copy-paste the structure of Fringe and redo that show with new characters."

Let me be more explicit than Peter G here and say that DIS uses one of the "safest" formulas of any Trek series, which makes it all the more astounding how much the series stumbles, despite the bar being as low as it is. Basically, they don't even risk much and still mess up what little they aspire to.

Serialized storytelling has been the norm since the early 2000s. It's nothing spectacularly new. The grade of innovation is comparable to "Enterprise", a series that (in my opinion) failed because it was simply a more boring version of the Trek that had come before it. Similarly to Enterprise, Discovery can't be called particularly "creative" in what it does. And besides, the turn towards serialized storytelling can already be seen in Enterprise, seasons 3 and 4. The whole of season 3 is just one big arc.

Also thank you, Peter G, for your observation that Jammer's ratings have to be seen as a "sliding scale" whose low- and hi-points are readjusted for every show. With that in mind, I can use my personal "correction factor" for his DIS ratings: Distract one star from Jammer's scores, and they feel about right, compared to the older Trek.

It would be interesting to give new scores in retrospect, though. One good example would be the second part of the pilot: I think it has become more and more obvious, over time, just how catastrophic this episode is for the overall arc, because it contains two cardinal errors that damaged Michael's character: First, her misguided attempt to shoot at the Klingons without provocation, and secondly her mistake to shoot T'Kuvma when Georgiou was already dead, and despite saying before the mission that it was imperative not to kill T'Kuvma and create a martyr. And five minutes later, she does. I recognized pretty much instantly how egregrious both mistakes were, but to be fair the magnitude of the failure (on the writers' part) only became fully clear when we learned during the course of the season that Michael was supposed to be a genius, champion of morality and so on. I wonder whether in such a light, the score of older episodes should be lowered. It feels wrong to me to give the two parts of the pilot the same score, because the second part screwed up which could've been a salvagable setup from part 1.
Set Bookmark
Steven
Mon, Feb 19, 2018, 11:42pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

>> "Take a very simple scene, as an example, a very small detail, that shows you exactly what is important in this show: When they first discover the Klingon satellite, they can not get a visual, because the visuals are blurred... So they look through an analog telescope, and can see it clearly. Can you see the idiocy? The "Optical scanner" (which is just a fancy name to say "telescope with an attached digital camera") can not see the object clearly because a field distorts the photons coming from that object, but an old telescope, which recieves exactly the same distorted photons, can see it clearly? This is a very minor and unimportant example, that is dwarfed by many other, bigger examples (and really, I would have just overlooked it normally as cheesy), where the show thinks its viewers are idiots. The ultimate example of that trend is the final solution to the klingon war: They just give up because Burnham is awesome. The show treats everybody, its cast, its viewers, like an idiot, and expects me to cheer them on for it. No, I will not do that. That has nothing to do with "But muh Klingon redesign" or "But Starfleet wouldn't do that!". NOBODY who is sane would do something like that. Nobody. None of the characters involved, would ever do that. And if they did, it would backfire spectacularly."

That's the feeling that the series has constantly been giving me, ever since the pilot. It's worth pointing out how much this disrespect for the viewer undermines the viewing experience. If you feel treated like an idiot, it gets very hard to get involved or immersed with the movie/series.

I just want to leave a brief comment on this episode: It has indeed shown how inept the writers are, and if it were for me, I couldn't give it more than 1 star. It is absolute madness to presume that L'Rell would abort an already won war, because she simply has no reason to do so. It's no exaggeration, as others have suggested, to call this one of the weakest/least believable conclusions to a war plot that has been shown on serialized television.

But anyway, the silver lining is that I feel now is a good moment to quite watching the show. We've seen the complete arc of season 1; we are capable of judging now; and we have a certain sense of completion. I see little incentive to jump into a new adventure/story next season and get invested into a show again that has HAD its trial run in season one and utterly failed in my opinion.

I really wanted to like the show, but things already started to fall apart in the pilot when I started to feel treated like an idiot, - to come back to the quote from the beginning of my post -, because I was supposed to follow Michael Burnham on her journey to mutiny, while her decisionmaking made no sense to me whatsoever. That experience is not only echoed, but completely dwarved by what we got served in the season finale; so in a sense, the series has come full circle. It's just baffling how nothing makes sense. If you just poke a little bit, if you just use your intellect for an instant, everything falls apart. We are expected to narrowly follow the perspective and narrative from Michael Burnham's POV, which is ultimately insulting to the audience. We are told what to feel and what to think, and all the ambiguity that was tauntingly woven into the series in its first few episodes turned out to be misleading: No, there is no complex use of multiple perspectives here; it's all just the Michael Burnham show. Love her, feel with her, or otherwise this series isn't for you.

Apparently my comment wasn't as brief as I thought... sorry for that. I'm saying my goodbye to those who have decided to stay onboard for season 2. It was a good discussion, really, and more intriguing really than watching the show itself.
Next ►Page 1 of 6
▲Top of Page | Menu | Copyright © 1994-2019 Jamahl Epsicokhan. All rights reserved. Unauthorized duplication or distribution of any content is prohibited. This site is an independent publication and is not affiliated with or authorized by any entity or company referenced herein. See site policies.