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Sat, Jul 4, 2020, 10:20pm (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S1: A Taste of Armageddon

SPOCK: An entrance, Captain, but no exit. They go in, but they do not come out.
KIRK: A disintegration machine?
SPOCK: Or an elevator ...
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William Smith
Sat, Jul 4, 2020, 2:58am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S1: Lonely Among Us

I found it unsettling that assistant engineer Singh dies and everyone is generally OK with it. No one was upset about their crew mate dying?
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Fri, Jul 3, 2020, 12:02am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Sine Qua Non

@Luke @Nolan

Yeah, after watching him on "Firefly" and "Supernatural", I'm pretty certain that this is his default voice, or at least close to it...

Regards... RT
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Wed, Jul 1, 2020, 2:07pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S1: The Naked Now

It seems that I am coming to this from a different point of view than most: I watched all of TOS a few years ago, but had never seen TNG before a couple of months ago. I started with season 3 because of all the warnings about the first two seasons. I decided to watch this episode — my very first from season 1 — after watching season 4’s “In Theory” (which I did not like) and hearing that Data’s character had originally been played as far more human, a possibility that made questions about his personhood seem more interesting to me.

As someone who watches the show mostly for the hypotheticals/moral dilemmas and not so much for character drama, I expected to hate this episode, but I actually rather liked it. A smiling, biologically vulnerable, and perhaps quietly emotional Data who is so tantalizingly close-but-not-quite-there in human terms is more interesting to me than the Data at the conclusion of “In Theory,” where the writers seem to definitely proclaim that Data is merely a computer we love to anthropomorphize (it is also annoyingly inconsistent with his behavior in other episodes). On top of that, this was my first introduction to Tasha Yar who seems like someone with an interesting background who I would’ve liked to get to know better — with her tough exterior and vulnerable inside she’s far more interesting than either Troi or Crusher. Her seeking out Data reads more genuine and compelling than the random coupling we see in “In Theory” — imagine we’d had a storyline about Tasha’s mixed feelings about having, well, _feelings_ for a robot, and how much more that could have propelled Data’s story too, instead of the rather limp one-off we get in “In Theory.” It seems clear that originally the writers were envisioning a long-term storyline as with Troi/Riker and Crusher/Picard and I think that could have been more fun to watch than either of those two couples.

I’m glad the show ultimately moved away from Geordi’s eyesight being a source of consternation for him though — I always thought it was nice how his eyesight is a non-issue for most of the series, with neither Geordi nor others making much of a big deal about it. Geordi is just Geordi: excellent engineer, endearingly unlucky in love, and all around nice guy. We are aware he is blind, and it’s not hidden from us or without its challenges, but that’s not the most prominent or deepest part of his character.

Riker gets a nice turn to shine here — his ability to keep in control after being infected is both a comment on his strength of character and on how different he is from his colleagues: he seems to be the only member of the crew who’s not really hiding anything and who wears his heart on his sleeve. His relative sobriety is perhaps also a tacit indication about how “out of control” everyone else really is. The contagion is repeatedly compared to a state like drunkenness, and it’s not altogether uncommon for genuine drunkenness to also provide a cover for knowingly engaging in behavior that will later be excused. Picard, Crusher, and Troi may be inebriated, but whatever logical part of them that’s left (and there is some since Crusher, for example, manages to concoct a cure, etc) also knows that they can say or do anything while infected and it won’t “count” against them later.

Most of the other characters (Crusher, Troi, Worf) are surprisingly consistent with their later characterizations given what I’d heard about the unevenness of season 1. The only person who comes off a bit more poorly in this episode is actually Picard, who, whether he’s dislikes children or not, seems too genuinely flustered by Wesley, and without the calm and cool so familiar in later seasons. I’ve never understood the Wesley hate, so his prominent presence in the episode is not a problem for me either.

All the complaints about cringe-inducing dialogue detailed in other comments certainly stand, though. I couldn’t watch Crusher’s horribly on-the-nose comments about Picard being attractive complete with the cliched unzipping of the top of her uniform without some definite squirming. But because I already knew the characters far better by the time I got around to this episode than I think most viewers did when they first viewed it, the episode overall mostly played for me the way it was supposed to: a fun way to watch the crew let their hair down.
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Wed, Jul 1, 2020, 1:59am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Prime Factors

One thing I never see anyone mention, and this episode isn't specifically the problem, but in the pilot, we meet the Kazon who marvel at the technology to create water from thin air. We will continue to meet the Kazon for a while yet.

Caretaker led me to believe that Voyager was going to be established, at least for a while as technologically superior in this quadrant, and that the feeling of this quadrant was going to be quite different than the Alpha Quadrant.

But virtually immediately we started meeting cultures that *appeared* to be of similar tech level to Voyager and feel very much similar to those we've met in TNG. We meet the Videans in episode 4 who have advanced tech - although perhaps primarily focused only on medical tech. We also meet the Banea in episode 7 who the crew turns to for engineering advice and who have the technology to both read and 'transfer' memories even into an alien host.

And now, in episode 9, we meet a culture that has mastered an advanced "space folding" technology and is at least well off enough to apparently live a luxurious life and to offer their hospitality to space strangers as well.

Now, nothing in any of this *proves* that anyone else has replicator tech - particularly enough to make water. And even the Kazon themselves have somehow managed space travel tech not far behind Starfleet's. They even show up in the very next episode.

How the heck can the Kazon have travelled this far from the Caretaker planet - close enough to the the planet in this episode - and Neelix is familiar enough with these people even though he is from the same area. So is it really that realistic that the Caretaker Kazon's should consider water-synthesis miraculous?

I mean, it's possible the Kazon barely travel and the group on the Caretaker planet have never travelled far outside of that system (though they showed up with a fancy ship at the end of the episode), and their sect - the Ogla - also show up in one further episode all the way into the second season. Maje Culluh of the Nistrom (admittedly a different sect) appears in the episode after this one, and continues to appear all the way to the season 3 premiere, so at least he has a ship with comparable range to Voyager).

It is *POSSIBLE* that even within the sect, they don't really travel very far individually or communicate very well. It just *FEELS* inauthentic.

This episode also got me thinking of one other issue that is never strongly addressed during the series. The Caretaker was supposedly bringing ships over for months. I don't think it is ever established exactly how many ships were actually transported, but in these early episodes, everyone treats Voyager as an amazing unique story and a technological marvel. Why does no one ever say "yeah, we meet another ship that the Caretaker brought over last week." Maybe in two or three years, we're moving in a different direction than most other ships would be going, but in these early episodes, where people like Neelix hear all the rumours of what's going on, I'm surprised no one ever mentions any other ships. Not even the Equinox that we later discover has a few months head start, but is on a similar path.
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Sun, Jun 28, 2020, 2:12pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Genesis

@Moegreen Ummm, ok.....
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Sun, Jun 28, 2020, 12:32pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Thine Own Self

This is not a good episode, at least the B story. The Troi storyline is ridiculously unrealistic.
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Sun, Jun 28, 2020, 12:04pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Lower Decks

You're off in your own world @Richard. It wasnt nearly that bad. I mean Picard dressed down Riker in the pilot and gave him the same "abuse." He also regularly sends crew members on dangerous missions. I know you feel the need to defend the young blonde girl but she is a member of Starfleet just like everyone else on that show.
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Sun, Jun 28, 2020, 11:54am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Lower Decks

No grumpy_otter that was your bias because for some reason you hate her. There was nothing wrong with that at all.
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Sun, Jun 28, 2020, 11:51am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Lower Decks

This is also a perfect example of how prejudice, sexism and racism can decide job positions as well as personal biases. Riker had already decided Lavelle wasnt qualified and Sito was and you can't that it wasnt based solely on looks.
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Sat, Jun 27, 2020, 3:10pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Parallels

I think the people who are saying that the Borg world Enterprise would not return it that Worf are missing the point. Not only was Worf and the others returned to their universe but it was also back in time, so that ship would be intact and the Geordi from the other universes would not have been killed.
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Sat, Jun 27, 2020, 2:42pm (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S1: Balance of Terror

You can watch "The Enemy Below" (on which BOT is based) at:

A great movie. I recommend it highly.
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Sat, Jun 27, 2020, 12:09pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Lessons

@Del_Duio: You're entitled to your opinion even when it is wrong. Dr. Crusher is definitely better looking.
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Kenneth Leonard Kirk
Sat, Jun 27, 2020, 9:10am (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S2: All the World Is Birthday Cake

I'm amazed by how may people don't get the HUGE geometry fail, especially the writers and production staff of a space show. The reflector is WAY too close to the planet. The crew would NEVER be able to simulate a fake star that way even if the planet's inhabitants has no spectroscopic analyses. I'm amazed by the stupidity needed to both write this crap into the script and not catch on to the colossal fail. It's like the entire production team and most of the audience have no clue at all about perspective and luminosity. My respect for MacFarlane's intellectual capacity fell into the toilet with this, he obviously doesn't even get triangles. Maybe they need someone who didn't fail elementary science and math on staff.

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Fri, Jun 26, 2020, 8:53pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Force of Nature

You pretty much said it all @Luke. She was an impatient eco-terrorist. The amount of damage she caused because of a temper tantrum is beyond insane.
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Thu, Jun 25, 2020, 1:20am (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S2: Cogenitor

Like “Doctor, Doctor,” another episode with an extremely dubious moral lesson. Yes, Tripp overstepped bounds by entering the cogenitor’s quarters and bringing it aboard the ship (initially). But once the cogenitor (Charles) becomes aware it is a slave - and there is no avoiding recognizing this fact - and requests asylum, Archer becomes morally culpable for dooming this person to be denied autonomy, choice, or even basic personhood. In “Doctor, Doctor,” Archer permitted an ENTIRE ALIEN RACE to face imminent extinction on the off-chance that the subordinate race MIGHT evolve into greater potential. In this episode, Archer forces a runaway slave back into captivity to avoid offending the slaver race. Only one episode prior, Archer DEMANDED Dr. Phlox administer treatment to an ill alien in violation of Phlox personal medical ethics.

Of course, what Tripp should have done isn’t cut and dry and the degree to which Enterprise should have involved itself in mitigating sex-based slavery among these people is worthy of consideration. But the ultimate conclusion is yet one more example of Enterprise disturbing didactic episodes.
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Wed, Jun 24, 2020, 1:01am (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S2: Horizon

I chime in these many years later to say I don’t see Travis as a “blank slate,” but rather very earnest and optimistic. And revisiting this episode after the jaded, downright deplorable character traits on display in ST:Picard, that fresh, eager, openness is extremely welcome. I only find myself disappointed that Travis is relegated to the background when in many ways I prefer him to Hoshi’s blandness or Malcolm’s “must follow the rules” routine.
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Tue, Jun 23, 2020, 5:40pm (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S1: The Naked Time

So they get those 3 days over again. Kind of sucks for Joe Tormolen though. You see, if had been part of the main cast, they could have rescued him from the past, however, minor characters get the "He's dead Jim" treatment.
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Mon, Jun 22, 2020, 5:46pm (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S1: Arena

C'mon did Sisko say: "I'd love to meet Kirk and talk to him about the time he saved Earth by letting a social worker die?" or "I'd love to meet Kirk and talk him about destroying the Planet Killer?" No! It was: "I'd like to shake his hand, ask him about fighting the Gorn on Cestus Three."

Damn right. The Gorn fight was an epic Star Trek moment for all the right (and wrong) reasons.

4 stars.

Complain to Sisko if you disagree.
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Mon, Jun 22, 2020, 10:15am (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S3: The Way to Eden

Hippies get their comeuppance? Nothing less than 3 stars from me.

"I'm gonna snap my fingers and jump for joy, I got a clean bill of health of Dr. McCoy"

and Spock's jam session puts it in the 3 1/2 stars range.
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Sarjenka's Brother
Sun, Jun 21, 2020, 11:19pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Prey

I think 3.5 stars is just right. I like this episode a lot.

What was interesting to me was the four-way conflict here. You had:

Hirogen vs. 8472.
Federation vs. Hirogen.
8472 vs. Borg (represented by 7 of 9)
8472 vs. Federation
Hirogen vs. Borg (briefly)
Federation (Janeway) vs. Borg

Each of the four represented species or groups had a particular point of view consistent with previous Trek history that put them all in conflict with the other three.

I was fascinated with see it play out. And the effects were stunning. Just shy of four stars.

They've definitely upped the risk factor for Season 4: Borg / 8472 / Krenim / Hirogen / Dream Invaders. That's definitely a more formidable set of opponents than the Kazon and random spacial anomalies.
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Sun, Jun 21, 2020, 6:23pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S1: Angel One

This makes zero sense. Why would they agree to be exiled to a harsh land when they can just leave with the Enterprise and allow themselves to be stopped off at a much more hospitable and comfortable land?
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Matthew Martin
Sun, Jun 21, 2020, 5:05pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S2: Sanctuary

Loved this one.

Shout out to the great F Murray Abraham and all the other Trek alums, including writer and director.
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Sun, Jun 21, 2020, 8:23am (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S2: Cogenitor

I have seen some fantastic episodes of Enterprise where they tackled moral and ethical dilemmas with finesse. This is not one of them. Nor do its ethics stand up to closer scrutiny.

It is posited by Archer in the episode, and supported by the article writer and several commentators, that Tucker has no right to interfere in another species culture. I challenge that assumption. The suggestion is also made that it is refreshing to see a story suggest that human values are not always the correct ones. This may well prove to be so - but there is no reason to accept that in this case.

The idea of contaminating alien cultures, and the related but separate idea that Starfleet is not there to enforce human standards on others, are expounded regularly by the show, and it is suggested that we are witnessing the development of the Prime Directive, as that standard is being formed by the crew's experience.

There are two fallacies at play in the way the show handles this here, and in how people have generally responded. The first fallacy is that the culture of the Vissians is being 'contaminated' or being 'interfered with'. They are not a pre-Warp civilisation (later to be the beneficiaries of the Prime Directive) - furthermore, they have sought out contact and welcomed interaction with an alien species (humanity). As fellow explorers, they have to be prepared for the possibility of meeting other species with different values, who will have a different perspective on their society.

The second fallacy at play is the idea that cultural 'interference' (or, as I would categorise it, simply interaction) only occurs in one direction. As much as some Vissians might think Trip is interfering in their society's norms, they (and Archer) seem unaware that the Vissians are interfering in theirs. Humanity (in their time) abhors slavery: yet the Vissians bring an enslaved being on board a Starfleet vessel in violation of the laws enforced aboard, take them back to their vessel, breaking further laws on the trafficking of beings. They later demand that the laws of asylum be placed in abeyance. As LoneShark has written above recently, it is the Fugitive Slave Act in action, and - due to the choices of the writers - we see Captain Archer go along with it, then give Trip a patronising speech that it is his fault that an enslaved person, unable to deal with their captivity and denied refuge, chose to kill themselves. The way this is written, Archer not only completely abandons his own ethics and principles to please the Vissians, he tried to gaslight another officer into doing the same. One of the interesting aspects of this final scene is, however, that despite giving Trip a dressing down, he doesn't give any kind of disciplinary punishment - because Trip has indeed done absolutely nothing wrong, and has likely followed the legislation that exists on Earth (Archer cites several places to indicate this). Curiously, he does pressure Trip into absolving him of any responsibility... even though Archer is the one who violated asylum protocol and sent a being back to their death. That was perhaps Archer's prerogative as a captain making diplomatic decisions: but that has nothing to do with Trips ethics or duty to the law he has sworn to uphold. Right now even, in 2020, I have a legal obligation to personally report any suspicions of human trafficking or abduction to the authorities, immediately and without any consultation with superiors or deference to their wishes or orders. Failure to do so will result in my dismissal, arrest and prosecution. No-one can - or should - order me to disobey that duty, and if they tried to do so the order would be refused.

It is telling that responses from 2020 should make this kind of point in contrast to those from earlier decades. World events have perhaps given a new urgency and relevancy to the ethical dilemmas posed in episodes such as this one. They have also guarded us against the spurious sophistry of moral equivalency behind which often hides venality, corruption and prejudice, and oppression of the powerful over their victims. This rationale is less and less convincing as time goes by, and is being challenged directly across the world right now. As for Archer's excuses - willing to not just overlook but to facilitate abuse in order to preserve relations and gain the benefits of technology from an abusive culture - the defence of 'Befehl ist Befehl' rang hollow in 1946.

As it stands, it is a product of its times - before people were willing to call out inconsistencies and moral equivalency, and the 'safe' choice was to simply back off from making any kind of moral stand whatsoever. Were this episode written today rather than a decade ago, I imagine the conclusion would have had to take into account the reality of human society as it has progressed, if they were to represent our future more accurately, and with a sense of hope and progress. If this is the future represented, however, then I'm not sure it is worth striving for. Who wants to go backwards rather than progress? I don't want to, and nor should Star Trek.
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Sun, Jun 21, 2020, 5:57am (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2


Since you are perfectly willing to voice... ehm... "non-OTDP thoughts" anyway, I wonder why you don't just speak up about the things you wanted to talk about.

I apologize if your intentions here were sincere, but you've made a terrible first impression:

(1) A person whose sole contribution to this website is a direct attack on another poster.
(2) Peppering that comment with random Trek references, which just looks like you're jumping through artificial hoops in order to make your comment more "legitimate".
(3) Making the analogy between internet discussions and boxing fights. If that's how you view things, that's already a bad sign.
(4) Complaining about "suppression of ideas", yet not willing to write *anything* about those ideas.

All of this just looks like you're trying to pick a fight.

Again, my apologies if I've misunderstood your intentions, but that's how it looks.

So forgive me if I don't see any reason to "justify" or "defend" myself in front of you. I generally wait until the other person demonstrates he can have a civil discussion for at least 5 seconds, before I begin to care about what what they think.
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