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Sparky Prime
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Re: Star Trek

Post by Sparky Prime »

Discovery season 4 episode 8

This episode doesn't amount to much from the reviews... Burnham isn't allowed to go after Book because of their relationship. Instead, Discovery is tasked with locating Unknown Species 10-C. Needing some rare stellar survey charts of that area of the galaxy from the black market leads them to encountering Book and Tarka anyway, since they need some black market Isolynium to build a Subspace weapon (one of these things is not like the other). This episode features a Changling... Who for some reason is counting cards, which Book apprehends because of a price on his own head. Not sure why a Changling would be concerned with money. Or why this Changling still takes an appearance similar to Odo's after 900 years. They also changed the special effects for when it morphs... Kinda looks like sand rather than a liquid. Burnham says Starfleet isn't welcome on this planet, but yet, they go down in Starfleet uniforms. Upon encountering Book and Tarka, Burnham attempts to take from them... in a poker game. Because when the stakes are to save the galaxy, that's something you can totally risk in a game of chance... She places a tracker on the isolynium at least.

The stellar charts don't reveal much. The star system is obscured by a "Faraday cage" energy field, with a 228 million km diameter radius. Large enough to encompass the host star as well as two or three orbiting bodies... The dark matter anomaly is also determined to be mining Boronite. They've been observing this thing for how long and never thought to look for any missing elements before now? I'd also point out it feels a little cheap they establish this star system is just outside the galactic barrier, but is still on the edge of the Milky Way... So it's not really extra-galactic. Boronite was a substance established in Voyager is used to create omega molecules.

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Re: Star Trek

Post by Sparky Prime »

Discovery season 4 episode 9

All the reviews say nothing really happens in this episode, sounds like they could have condensed this and the previous episode into one... Discovery goes after Book and Tarka. Debates and fighting happen. Book decides to stand down, but Tarka fires the weapon anyway, destroying the Dark Matter Anomaly (really feel they should rename it at this point, considering it has been established what it is and how it was created). Tarka realizes all his plans to use the power source were wasted, as apparently it was being powered from the other side of the wormhole. And a replacement Dark Matter Anomaly takes its place, effectively nullifying the one thing they actually did in this episode.

For an episode titled "Rubicon", I'm not seeing how this is a point of no return... I guess they're trying to suggest it's the fact Unknown Species 10-C is now aware of them because of the destruction of the first Dark Matter Anomaly? But any species as advanced as they're made out to be should already be well aware of life elsewhere in the galaxy, and the destruction they are inflicting. There's no indication they really care. Especially given they just send another Dark Matter Anomaly to replace the first without any apparent safeguards or repercussions.

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Re: Star Trek

Post by Sparky Prime »

Discovery season 4 episode 10

More filler!

The new dark matter anomaly is stronger than the previous one. Which doesn't change much. The only change is it'll gather all the boronite in that area of space in 12 hours rather than a week. So Discovery has to step up the plans to make first contact with unknown species 10-c. The Federation President decides to hand over her duties to the Vice-President so that she can go with Discovery because of her diplomatic skills. Admiral Vance objects, saying they've never left the galaxy before (even though a couple of ships named Enterprise have done it) and Discovery may not be coming back from this mission, but she's made up her mind. So Discovery gets some "programmable antimatter" to enhance their shields to protect it from the Galactic Barrier, and starts the trip...

Why doesn't Discovery just spore jump outside the galactic barrier? Well apparently the mycelial network thins out near the edge of the galaxy, and doesn't exist outside it.... The network that was explained back in season 1 to run everywhere throughout the entire cosmos, said to allow them to appear anywhere in the entire universe, and even allowed them to jump to another universe altogether, now conveniently does not exist at the edge of the Milky Way? Lazy writing at its finest.

The galactic barrier is depicted very differently from how it appeared in TOS. Rather than purely an energy barrier, it's much more nebulous and has lightning discharges and... various kinds of "space cells" floating about that Discovery ends up hitching rides in to get safely through. It kinda takes all the drama and difficulty of getting through the barrier out of it. Instead they try to focus more on the characters, when they get a transmission that the anomaly has moved in range of Earth and Vul... Ni'Var (despite the two being 16 light-years apart? I mean, the anomaly might be 5 light years in diameter, but it shouldn't be able to threaten two solar systems that far apart from each other at the same time). Burnham wants to tell the crew, but the Federation President asks her not to. It sounds like it comes off awkwardly since some of the characters talk about what they'll do when they get home to Earth, totally unrelated to anything actually going on. They then try to pick up the action again by having Discovery need to find a new space cell when their first one ends up in a "traffic jam".

Meanwhile, Tarka and Book head to a planet for some programmable antimatter so they can enhance Book's ships shields to pass through the galactic barrier as well. Don't know how programmable antimatter can do anything to shields that project a protective energy field around a ship. Being more than 900 years in the future, I could believe they simply developed a special kind of shields capable of protecting them from the barrier without this "programmable antimatter" nonsense. I have to think these writers just don't realize how far into the future they've taken the story, and how Star Trek technology works. But if they just slap a term like dilithium or antimatter on it, then they don't have to explain it, and they've reverted in technological development. Why are they still using things like quantum torpedoes, standard warp drives and shields? They haven't developed anything besides programmable matter in the last 800 years? Also not sure why Tarka isn't being held following his actions in the previous episode. Why do they even want to go? I mean, I know Tarka still wants their power source, and Book wants to stop the Dark Matter Anomaly, but what do they hope to accomplish by going to face these aliens head on? At any rate, again they put the focus on the characters here, by flashing back to Tarka's time with his partner during their captivity with the Emerald Chain.

Discovery makes it through the barrier, and the President decides to inform the crew about the anomaly threatening Earth and Ni'Var, making their mission all the more important to complete quickly. Now outside the galaxy, they can get a clearer reading of the "hyperfield". They've also detected a planet two light years from the hyperfield. They haven't detected any life on it, but Burnham is sending a team to check it out anyway. I find it dubious to be saying they've left the galaxy if they're detecting planets. Which seems a little odd in itself. Is this a rouge planet, or does it have a solar system?

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Re: Star Trek

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Star Trek Picard season 2 episode 1
Spoiler
New intro and theme song. It's kinda generic, but it is better than the Blue Skies inspired theme from the first season.

Picking up about 2 years after the events of season 1... Picard, Rios and Musiker have all been reinstated to Starfleet. Picard is now Chancellor at Starfleet Academy back to his Admiral rank, Musiker is a commander on (I presume) a new USS Excelsior, and Rios is Captain of a new USS Stargazer (and constantly has a cigar with him, which feels very out of place). Giving a speech at the Academy, Picard recognizes Elnor, the first fully Romulan cadet. Meanwhile, Seven of Nine is still a member of the Fenris Rangers, using the La Sirena to deliver medical supplies, and Jurati and Soji are on a Deltan colony, spreading goodwill towards artificial lifeforms now that the Federation has lifted the ban on them. (Not sure Jurati is doing a good job of it, considering she's getting drunk and talking about how she was cleared of charges after she'd killed Bruce Maddox in the previous season while under the influence of a mind meld).

Following the season's harvest of grapes at Chateau Picard (officially setting this in the 25th century with the wine labels reading 2401), Laris and Picard talk about her husband's (Zhaban) death, about a year and a half ago. She explains it's Romulan tradition to honor the loss of a loved one by loving again, indicating her feelings towards Picard (this feels a little awkward, as the actors have about a 20 year age gap between them) but Picard stops short of kissing her, which she later says she understands, it's just Picard being himself (Uh... hasn't Picard had plenty of lovers in the past? Why is this suddenly a problem for him now?). That night, Picard has a dream about his mother, which alludes to some sort of trauma that happened during his childhood (we already know his older brother was a bully to him growing up, I'm not sure we need some trauma among his parents as well). After the speech at Starfleet Academy, Picard heads to 10 Forward Ave. in Los Angeles (didn't they establish in Voyager the whole area would sink into the ocean by this century?) to talk to Guinan to discuss why Picard has never been able to commit to a relationship (Guinan, explaining her aged appearance, tells Picard El-Aurians only age slowly if they choose to. She has apparently chosen to age with humans so as not to remind them of their own limited lifespans. Bit of a weak explanation, but given how little we know of El-Aurians, I guess it works. It's great seeing Whoopi Goldberg back in the role). Guinan alludes to something Picard has never talked to her about, again suggesting some trauma in Picard's past that hasn't allowed him to explore what his heart wants, and has used exploration of the stars to escape from it.

Meanwhile, Starfleet encounters a spatial anomaly and the Stargazer picks up Jurati on the way to help them investigate it. They receive a message from it, and Jurati helps them determine it's hundreds of overlapping voices, saying "Help us, Picard" (hmmm... what species do we know of that speaks with a Collective voice?). Seven also happens to be in the area, and joins them... for some reason (it's disappointing they don't actually show Seven helping them figure out what the anomaly is, it's like the writers have forgotten how intelligent Seven is supposed to be, they only use her for her brawn in this episode). Starfleet briefs Picard on the situation, telling him the message also contains an article of the Federation charter, suggesting whoever is on the other side of the anomaly wants to join the Federation, and will only speak to Picard.

Arriving at the Stargazer, Picard is greeted by Seven who walks him to the bridge. Picard marvels at the new Stargazer (the set design is very Star Trek meets TRON: Legacy), feeling his life has come full circle now. She tells him the Stargazer is the first ship (she says of her class, but it doesn't have an NX registry, and it's dedication plaque says Segan-class, so I'm going to assume the writers meant just the first ship) built with technology gleaned from studying the Borg Cube (that the Romulans held in the previous season. Not sure why this is the first time they say they've incorporated Borg technology in a ship, didn't they learn anything from the Borg tech on Voyager and the Enterprise E?). She also expresses her feelings that her Borg implants make people uneasy towards her (suggesting why Seven has kept herself isolated after Voyager returned to Earth. On the bridge, Picard hails the anomaly, at first getting no response. Repeating his message, he is suddenly acknowledged, and a Borg ship (with a design unlike what we've ever seen before) emerges from the anomaly (surprise?). A whole fleet arrives to backup the Stargazer (various classes of ships make appearances: Luna, Sovereign, Akira, Inquiry, a new refit design for the Excelsior class, as well as surprisingly ships from Star Trek Online: Reliant-class, Gagarin-class, Ross-class, and Sutherland-class) while they discuss how to proceed. Starfleet is aware that the Borg are severely weakened (not sure if they are alluding to the virus Admiral Janeway infected them with in Voyager's finale, or whatever it was that disabled the Borg cube in the previous season), so they aren't certain if the Borg are serious about joining the Federation, or as Seven suggest, have simply adapted their tactics in attempts to assimilate them. The Borg grow impatient and inform them they are sending their Queen to negotiate. Rios tells them if they transport anyone over, they will be fired upon, but the Borg cut through their shields and beam over the Queen (again, doesn't look anything like a Borg we've ever seen before) anyway. She says first she needs power, and launches tendrils into various consoles and begins taking over the Borg enhancements built into the ship, using the Stargazer to get the access codes to the rest of the fleet to control them all (the Queen also stunning the various security officers that arrive on the bridge, which Rios keeps telling them to stop, but they keep firing anyway). Out of options as the Borg Queen gains control, Picard activates the self destruct (as an Admiral, it makes sense he has the authority, but as captain, why does Rios wait for him to do it?). As the 10 second countdown runs out, the Queen repeats a phrase his mother used to tell him... "Look up".

Picard awakens back at Chateau Picard, with very different décor and his clothes changed, as well as some sort of energy shield over the planet. A synth asks him if he needs assistance. Picard asks him who he is, and where Laris is. The synth doesn't know who she is but offers to check immigration records. Picard doesn't understand what's happening here... When Q (using de-aging CGI, but quickly "catches up" when he sees Picard) makes his entrance. Reminding Picard that the "trial never ends", he welcomes him to "the end of the road not taken".
I have to say, this was an excellent season premier. You can tell they listened to the criticisms they got in the first season. Still had some faults, but huge improvement compared to the first season. This is really what they should have been doing in the first place. Hopefully the rest of the season will follow the example this episode set.

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Re: Star Trek

Post by Sparky Prime »

Discovery season 4 episode 11

Despite saying she'd send a team to investigate the nearby planet in the previous episode, Burnham takes Discovery to investigate. Some of the diplomats aren't happy considering it's only a matter of time before Earth and Ni'Var start seeing debris from the Dark Matter Anomaly (is this debris traveling faster than light? Again, how could both solar systems be affected at the same time if they're about 16 light years apart?) The planet turns out to be the dead core of a formerly gas giant world, the gas has been "burned away" by meteor impacts... How would meteor impacts burn away the atmosphere of a gas giant? They also find Dyson Rings around the star of the system. But for some reason, they don't bother to check them out beyond determining they are similar in construction to the Dark Matter Anomaly control device. With the planet dead, wouldn't they likely be living in those Dyson rings? They find there's a single structure on the planet, (along with "bones" they believe suggests a species that floated in the gasses of the planet) so an away team goes to investigate that, and after suffering hallucinations, discover the cause to be "dust" that turns out to be like pheromones' (which their EV suits cannot filter out simply because they don't recognize it, but once they adjust their suits, it can filter it out... seems like a very bad design flaw). They conclude the structure they discover must be a nursery ("cultural context" that 10-c values life), and the pheromones must be how 10-c communicates (making a lot of assumptions based on very little evidence...), through pheromones that transmit emotion.

Meanwhile, Book and Tarka are looking for a way to get into the 'hyperfield' undetected, so they pull a Han Solo maneuver, and attach their ship to Discovery's hull, cloaked, (pretty sure even if Discovery couldn't see them, the sensors would still detect something attaching to the hull). So that Zora wont eventually detect them, they sneak onto Discovery (how does the ship's computer not detect that?) to install a patch, but Tarka is caught by Jett Reno, whom he takes hostage.

So, now that the Discovery has some idea how 10-c communicates, and that they value life, they're finally on their way to the hyperfield. Not sure why they've built up this communication problem. The universal translator has been shown to be nearly 100% effective in the 24th century, learning new languages instantly. Yet here in the 32nd century, they assume the universal translator wont work. It's almost like they read ahead and already knew the universal translator would fail. And who is to say 10-c wouldn't have their own translators when they've been played up as having such advanced technology, they're beyond anything the Federation has encountered? They've been making so many assumptions about how this will go, yet seem to be guessing 100% correctly every time.

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Re: Star Trek

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Sparky Prime wrote:
Thu Mar 03, 2022 12:22 pm
Star Trek Picard season 2 episode 1
Spoiler
New intro and theme song. It's kinda generic, but it is better than the Blue Skies inspired theme from the first season.

Picking up about 2 years after the events of season 1... Picard, Rios and Musiker have all been reinstated to Starfleet. Picard is now Chancellor at Starfleet Academy back to his Admiral rank, Musiker is a commander on (I presume) a new USS Excelsior, and Rios is Captain of a new USS Stargazer (and constantly has a cigar with him, which feels very out of place). Giving a speech at the Academy, Picard recognizes Elnor, the first fully Romulan cadet. Meanwhile, Seven of Nine is still a member of the Fenris Rangers, using the La Sirena to deliver medical supplies, and Jurati and Soji are on a Deltan colony, spreading goodwill towards artificial lifeforms now that the Federation has lifted the ban on them. (Not sure Jurati is doing a good job of it, considering she's getting drunk and talking about how she was cleared of charges after she'd killed Bruce Maddox in the previous season while under the influence of a mind meld).

Following the season's harvest of grapes at Chateau Picard (officially setting this in the 25th century with the wine labels reading 2401), Laris and Picard talk about her husband's (Zhaban) death, about a year and a half ago. She explains it's Romulan tradition to honor the loss of a loved one by loving again, indicating her feelings towards Picard (this feels a little awkward, as the actors have about a 20 year age gap between them) but Picard stops short of kissing her, which she later says she understands, it's just Picard being himself (Uh... hasn't Picard had plenty of lovers in the past? Why is this suddenly a problem for him now?). That night, Picard has a dream about his mother, which alludes to some sort of trauma that happened during his childhood (we already know his older brother was a bully to him growing up, I'm not sure we need some trauma among his parents as well). After the speech at Starfleet Academy, Picard heads to 10 Forward Ave. in Los Angeles (didn't they establish in Voyager the whole area would sink into the ocean by this century?) to talk to Guinan to discuss why Picard has never been able to commit to a relationship (Guinan, explaining her aged appearance, tells Picard El-Aurians only age slowly if they choose to. She has apparently chosen to age with humans so as not to remind them of their own limited lifespans. Bit of a weak explanation, but given how little we know of El-Aurians, I guess it works. It's great seeing Whoopi Goldberg back in the role). Guinan alludes to something Picard has never talked to her about, again suggesting some trauma in Picard's past that hasn't allowed him to explore what his heart wants, and has used exploration of the stars to escape from it.

Meanwhile, Starfleet encounters a spatial anomaly and the Stargazer picks up Jurati on the way to help them investigate it. They receive a message from it, and Jurati helps them determine it's hundreds of overlapping voices, saying "Help us, Picard" (hmmm... what species do we know of that speaks with a Collective voice?). Seven also happens to be in the area, and joins them... for some reason (it's disappointing they don't actually show Seven helping them figure out what the anomaly is, it's like the writers have forgotten how intelligent Seven is supposed to be, they only use her for her brawn in this episode). Starfleet briefs Picard on the situation, telling him the message also contains an article of the Federation charter, suggesting whoever is on the other side of the anomaly wants to join the Federation, and will only speak to Picard.

Arriving at the Stargazer, Picard is greeted by Seven who walks him to the bridge. Picard marvels at the new Stargazer (the set design is very Star Trek meets TRON: Legacy), feeling his life has come full circle now. She tells him the Stargazer is the first ship (she says of her class, but it doesn't have an NX registry, and it's dedication plaque says Segan-class, so I'm going to assume the writers meant just the first ship) built with technology gleaned from studying the Borg Cube (that the Romulans held in the previous season. Not sure why this is the first time they say they've incorporated Borg technology in a ship, didn't they learn anything from the Borg tech on Voyager and the Enterprise E?). She also expresses her feelings that her Borg implants make people uneasy towards her (suggesting why Seven has kept herself isolated after Voyager returned to Earth. On the bridge, Picard hails the anomaly, at first getting no response. Repeating his message, he is suddenly acknowledged, and a Borg ship (with a design unlike what we've ever seen before) emerges from the anomaly (surprise?). A whole fleet arrives to backup the Stargazer (various classes of ships make appearances: Luna, Sovereign, Akira, Inquiry, a new refit design for the Excelsior class, as well as surprisingly ships from Star Trek Online: Reliant-class, Gagarin-class, Ross-class, and Sutherland-class) while they discuss how to proceed. Starfleet is aware that the Borg are severely weakened (not sure if they are alluding to the virus Admiral Janeway infected them with in Voyager's finale, or whatever it was that disabled the Borg cube in the previous season), so they aren't certain if the Borg are serious about joining the Federation, or as Seven suggest, have simply adapted their tactics in attempts to assimilate them. The Borg grow impatient and inform them they are sending their Queen to negotiate. Rios tells them if they transport anyone over, they will be fired upon, but the Borg cut through their shields and beam over the Queen (again, doesn't look anything like a Borg we've ever seen before) anyway. She says first she needs power, and launches tendrils into various consoles and begins taking over the Borg enhancements built into the ship, using the Stargazer to get the access codes to the rest of the fleet to control them all (the Queen also stunning the various security officers that arrive on the bridge, which Rios keeps telling them to stop, but they keep firing anyway). Out of options as the Borg Queen gains control, Picard activates the self destruct (as an Admiral, it makes sense he has the authority, but as captain, why does Rios wait for him to do it?). As the 10 second countdown runs out, the Queen repeats a phrase his mother used to tell him... "Look up".

Picard awakens back at Chateau Picard, with very different décor and his clothes changed, as well as some sort of energy shield over the planet. A synth asks him if he needs assistance. Picard asks him who he is, and where Laris is. The synth doesn't know who she is but offers to check immigration records. Picard doesn't understand what's happening here... When Q (using de-aging CGI, but quickly "catches up" when he sees Picard) makes his entrance. Reminding Picard that the "trial never ends", he welcomes him to "the end of the road not taken".
I have to say, this was an excellent season premier. You can tell they listened to the criticisms they got in the first season. Still had some faults, but huge improvement compared to the first season. This is really what they should have been doing in the first place. Hopefully the rest of the season will follow the example this episode set.
I'm glad to hear the second season is an improvement. I mostly enjoyed Picard's first season, though I had some problems with it. I don't know when I'll be able to watch the second since I'm not paying for Paramount +, but I'll see it at some point.

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Re: Star Trek

Post by Sparky Prime »

Picard season 2 episode 2
Spoiler
Q introduces Picard to his new setting, while Picard says he's too old for Q's games flatly refuses to be a pawn with whatever his schemes are. Q claims Picard is not a pawn, but the very board in which the game is played. Not wishing to play any part, Picard says he's too old, which Q seems genuinely angry about, saying how unfair time is, and whatever this is about, Q is just a suture in the wound. Picard notices how off Q appears, generally not one to get angry like this, and asks if he's well, but Q doesn't answer, instead teleports them to another part of the vineyard with a snap. I have to say, I miss the effects of Q's powers here. When he snaps his figures, there is no flashes of light, no sound effects in this episode.... Instead, things just instantly change. Continuing the tour, Q says this is no lesson, it's a penance. Q calls Earth a corpse that humans are keeping on life support and we find the Picard of this timeline is a ruthless general. He has Romulan slaves working in his kitchen, and in his study are various alien skulls on display. Q introduces him to Gul Dukat, General Martok, and Sarak among them (and not named is Grand Nagus Zek, a Borg drone named One of Two, a Saurian named Y'Shi, and a skull of a species I don't think has been in Star Trek before... it's labeled as a Lihn Zhee named Captain M'Atalas, telling Picard he'd personally killed them all. Q leaves at this point, telling Picard he cannot wash this blood from his hands, but he can ask for forgiveness. Picard asks for what, and Q cryptically says he thinks Picard already knows. After a while his synthetic butler tells him he's due to leave to meet with the President for "Eradication Day".

The President of the Confederation turns out to be Seven of Nine (minus her Borg implants). As she is briefed (by her husband, who is a new character) about the days agenda, she asks to talk to Rios privately (as he is currently leading an attack on Vulcan), and finds out he is still himself. She orders him back to Earth on Presidential authority. For some reason, they're using Kaplan F17 Speed Freighters as fighters against the Vulcans. I'm guessing simply so they can reuse the La Sirena sets, but why aren't they using human designed starships? It doesn't make sense in this setting for them to be using alien designed/built ships. Seven then meets with Jurati to see the prisoner to be executed, which turns out to be the Borg Queen. This is a more traditional looking Queen, not the one from the first episode. Although she's also a bit different. Unlike the Queen(s?) we saw in First Contact and Voyager, she's not essentially just a head in a robot suit, this one has part of a torso and arms. Find it very hard to believe humans, even if they are so ruthless in this timeline, could take down the Borg Collective. The Queen recognizes Seven, much to Seven's husband's confusion. He thinks the Queen has gone mad, but Seven tells them the Queens can see across time and realities (or so she's heard). Meanwhile, Raffi and Elnor (although I'm not surprised they remember the real timeline considering these are the main characters... why did Q pick this particular group of people? On the Enterprise or Voyager, it made sense Q would choose the senior staff, but why Picard, Rios, Seven, Jurati, Raffi and Elnor in this situation? Raffi and Elnor weren't even on the Stargazer) find themselves in the middle of a Romulan terrorist attack in Okinawa. Raffi "arrests" Elnor and takes him to San Francisco for questioning.

With everyone gathered, Seven explains the Borg Queen told her time is broken and Picard realizes that's how Q did this. Even though Q upfront told him this is a world of Picard's own making. Little disappointed that Seven doesn't have anything to say about Q here, having met him and his son while on Voyager. Instead, Elnor says he remembers Q mentioned in Picard's biography. Since he's a Starfleet cadet now, why couldn't he have said he remembers a briefing about the Q? Raffi doesn't seem to know who/what Q is though, despite being best friends with Picard and a commander. At any rate, they go talk to the Queen and learn the divergence in the timeline came from Los Angeles in the year 2024 and tells them to seek out the Watcher. No idea how the Borg Queen would have this specific of information. Picard mentions they can use a less sophisticated method of time travel and suggests a slingshot maneuver around a sun, like Kirk's Enterprise had done. But they'll need the Borg Queen to make the calculations since they don't have a Spock. Couldn't Seven do that? Again, I don't think these writers realize how intelligent Seven is supposed to be. And was it Spock specifically that had to do the calculations? I remember in Star Trek 4 he said he was limited by the equipment on the Bird of Prey and had to program some variables from memory, but I was under the impression the Enterprise computers were capable of making the calculations even without Spock. But I do like that they somewhat establish it's not exactly an easy method to time travel. But they're unable to beam out as the building goes into lockdown for Eradication Day proceedings. Picard realizes that'll be their chance if Jurati can break through the security measures. They stall until literally the last second for Jurati to do her thing, and Rios beams them up. But with Presidential override, Seven's "husband" deactivates their shields and beams aboard with a couple security officers, wondering how Picard's skull would look with a traitor label.
This felt somewhat like a mirror universe episode. It wasn't a bad episode... But I feel the concept of 'evil doppelgänger universe', or timeline in this case, is a little overplayed in modern Star Trek (even if I'm not directly watching Discovery). So I didn't enjoy it as much as the previous episode, but this is setting things up for what's to come next and showing the stakes if they fail to restore the timeline. Not seeing how this ties into the events of the previous episode though. It was really good seeing John de Lancie reprising his role as Q. Honestly, I was hoping for a little more of him.
Last edited by Sparky Prime on Wed Mar 23, 2022 12:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Star Trek

Post by Sparky Prime »

Discovery season 4 episode 12

Discovery finally arrives at the hyperfield. 10-c doesn't respond to standard hails, but when Discovery send some DOT robots spray the hydrocarbon (pheromones) for peace on it, a large tentacle grabs them and Discovery, putting them into a bubble and pulls them into the hyperfield. Inside, they detect 3 identical gas giants, but they're (as well as Book's ship, still attached under Discovery) trapped in the bubble with shields, weapons and engines all offline.

Discovery proceeds with first contact, but not having anywhere to start, decide on sending 10-c a gift of boronite. This does the trick, as eventually 10-c shows up, sending out a mist of hydrocarbons and flashing lights. Discovery doesn't understand at first, but eventually figures out 10-c is using a bridge language, similar to Lincos, using math as a means to communicate. Discovery is able to respond, and 10-c sends a metal sphere. Burnham, Saru, the Federation President and the Vulcan representative enters, and the sphere disappears. Inside, they find a replica of the Discovery bridge (begging to question, why bother moving them off the ship?) and an isolytic weapon. 10-c wants to know why it was used against the dark matter anomaly. They're able to explain that it terrifies them, and 10-c responds that this greatly saddens them. Unfortunately, Tarka has the Earth representative vent some plasma from Discovery's nacelle, opening a hole in the bubble, and uses a reverse tractor beam to push Books ship out, causing 10-c to send them back to Discovery. Reno is able to get a message to Discovery that he plans on yanking the power source for the Dark Matter Anomaly out, which she believes will destroy everything in the hyperfield, and leave a "toxic waste dump" headed towards Earth.

--

I have to admit, the synopsis of this episode interested me enough that I decided to watch this episode. How they handled learning how to communicate with 10-c was actually pretty interesting. Unfortunately, I feel like they undercut because the characters just assumed the universal translator wouldn't work in the first place, despite having no idea who/what 10-c even were until this point. And kind of ignores that Starfleet has around 1000 years worth of experiences contacting new life and civilizations to draw upon, even if the universal translator works in most cases. They've figured out how to communicate with other species that don't communicate the same way we do before. Or those species have figured out how to communicate with them (TNG episode "Home Soil" for an example). Why is it treated like such an unusual occurrence in this series? There's also a couple side conversations between Burnham and Saru that just didn't fit in anything that's going on. The first, Saru needs some help figuring out the Vulcan representative because she's acting cold towards him, and Burnham explains Vulcans tend to overcompensate in public when it comes to close relationships, when they're dealing with working out how to communicate with 10-c. And just after the sphere arrives on Discovery, Burnham takes Saru to her quarters to tell him she feels uncertain because 10-c is holding all the cards, and so they have an impromptu screaming session. I get what they were trying to do with this scene, but it was just so out of place.

Kinda annoying they don't actually show 10-c. They're always obscured by gas in this episode. It takes the crew an absurdly long time to realize Reno is missing. The computer says she's in engineering, but she's obviously not there and no one in engineering has seen her all day. Yet they page her, thinking she may just be somewhere else on the ship. They find her comm badge emitting false biosigns (leading them to discover Tarka's tampering, but it's too late by then), yet Reno stashed her comm badge when she realized Tarka was about to stun her when she found him in the previous episode. She has to use licorice to generate an electrical charge to get it to work for some reason (pretty sure it'd need a bigger charge than that could provide), and Book's access codes to transmit her message off the ship. So, don't know how there where two comm badges for Reno. Oh, and the Earth representative has access codes to vent the plasma from the nacelles for some reason.

So... The writing of this show is still deeply flawed, but the plot of this episode is one of the most actually Star Trekkie plots they've done.

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Re: Star Trek

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Picard season 2 episode 3
Spoiler
Seven attempts to diffuse the situation by claiming they're doing some classified operation, but her "husband" doesn't believe her. He thinks she's an imposter, asking her what his full name is. A brief fight ensues, and he along with the two security officers are vaporized (their phasers were set to disintegrate, yet Elnor only received a shot to the shoulder?) Making their way to the sun, they're attacked by three Starfleet starships (good to see the Nova and Steamrunner class here, but given this universe redesign of the Galaxy class we saw in a painting in Picard's house, kinda doubt these ships would look the same). The Queen escapes her tube and plugs herself into the ship's systems. Taking control, she disables the three starships, and time warps them around the sun.

The ship is drained of power following the time warp. They can't crash the ship into downtown L.A., so Picard crashes them into LeBarre, France (apparently the Picard vineyards don't exist in this century and the land is empty of people? Find it a bit hard to believe no one noticed) Elnor dies when they aren't able to restore power to the ship. The Borg Queen (who appears to have gone into a shutdown mode) is siphoning off the energy to keep herself alive, and they need her alive for more information about why they came here. I have to say, I really don't like Raffi's reaction here. I get she's upset by Elnor's death, but she blames Picard specifically for it, claiming he and Q play games with people's lives, when Picard is just as much a victim of Q as the rest of them are. When did she and Elnor get so close anyway? She acts like a parent loosing a child, but they never establish a bond like that between them. Picard was supposed to be a father figure to Elnor. Picard keeps them on point, saying the Queen had mentioned something about a Watcher they need to find.

Raffi, Rios and Seven beam to L.A. to scan for any alien subspace signals, but with the power as it is, they don't all end up in the same location (looks like Raffi may have ended up in a Sanctuary District, like we saw in DS9, although they don't seem to have the same security.). She and Seven quickly meet up and assume Rios is on his way (Raffi is a trained Starfleet officer, right?). Meanwhile, Jurati and Picard try to see if they can wake up the Queen, and Jurati goes into her mind to repair some damage (Picard understandably is very much against this idea, as the Queen will attempt to assimilate her mind). It works (not sure how just attaching a tube to Jurati's neck connects to her to the Queen), and the Queen wakes up coherent now that she's ahead of the divergence in the timeline (seems like a dumb flaw for the Queen to have. Break the timeline and it breaks the Queen? How would their plan in First Contact to change the timeline work then?) She demands the ship in exchange for her information (still not clear how she even has information about Earth in this century), but Jurati reveals she was able to steal some information from the Queen while she was in her head, they have coordinates to the Watcher. The Queen admits she's impressed. Rios ended up materializing several feet off the ground, and is injured. He's taken to a free clinic, where he ends up getting himself arrested by immigration, and is forced to leave his comm badge behind.
It was an ok episode. I kind of expected the escape at the beginning to be a bit longer and more dramatic, considering it was a pretty big focus in the trailers. I like how they're portraying Seven. Without her Borg implants, people aren't apprehensive towards her, and she's clearly enjoying being treated like a normal person. Really did not like Raffi in this episode. She doesn't come across like a Starfleet officer. I get she's upset, but that's no excuse for how reckless she reacts, especially when they just had a big discussion about how careful they need to be, and the misplaced anger.
Last edited by Sparky Prime on Thu Mar 24, 2022 11:00 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Star Trek

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Discovery season 4 episode 13 (season finale)

Discovery requests 10-c to let them out of the bubble so they can stop Book's ship, but they don't understand, they think they're already out of it. The Vulcan President attempts a (long distance) mind meld, and reports that the 10-c don't understand the concept of individuals. This is somehow different from the concept of a hive mind, such as the Borg, but the Vulcan President isn't sure she can describe it exactly. In any case, the 10-c are confused and terrified, so they aren't going to help. Stamets comes up with an idea to use the spore drive to break the bubble. If they use the drive, but don't jump, the energy should break the bubble. But it'll also burn out the drive (pointing out it'll be fixable, but they'll need a starbase to make those repairs), making the trip home take decades at warp (um.... The Enterprise didn't take that long to reach the barrier back in the 23rd century, which granted when they changed the warp scale with TNG, it probably should have taken them much longer to get there... But regardless, warp drives by the 32nd century should be significantly faster). With no alternative, Burnham orders them to do it. Arriving at Book's ship, Reno is beamed over to Discovery, and Tarka is moments away from breaching the device casing to reach the power core. They decide the only way to stop them is to ram a shuttle into Book's ship, and the United Earth General that released the plasma from Discovery's nacelle in the previous episode volunteers, to make amends. Discovery is able to safely beam the General back just after impacting Book's ship. (Not sure why they didn't beam her back before the actual impact, seems like unnecessarily putting her in danger for the sake of drama, only to immediately diffuse any sense of drama by telling us she is safely back on Discovery).

It works and Books ship is disabled, but sends it spiraling towards the edge of the hyperfield. Discovery attempts to beam Book and Tarka back, and they're able to get a partial lock on Book, but the ship is destroyed before they can successfully beam him over. Tarka attempts to use his interdimensional transporter when the ship collides with the hyperfield, but it's not established if it worked or not. 10-c understand that they are individuals now and contains Discovery in another bubble, which brings them back to one of their planets to continue talks, this time face to face (they're basically giant space whales. Not sure how there is solid ground for the crew to stand on inside a gas giant). The crew give several long impassioned speeches about their feelings and that the 10-c are destroying their worlds (I don't see how they've made the jump from struggling to come up with how to use math to express certain concepts, to easily translating whole speeches on the spot in such a short amount of time). 10-c shuts down the dark matter anomaly (just as Earth is about to be destroyed by debris, which magically reverse course as soon as the dark matter anomaly is shut down. Why is it that Kwejian was instantly destroyed by gravity waves, but Earth is only threatened by debris? And shouldn't their planetary shields and defenses be able to protect them from rocks?) and reveals they intercepted Book's transporter beam, having not understood it at the time. Rematerializing Book, he convinces them not to use the dark matter anomaly ever again. They'll also have to stop using their hyperfield to protect themselves (for a species said to be so far beyond us, they seem oddly defenseless). 10-c agrees, but before shutting it down completely, they use the wormhole to send Discovery home.

Back at Earth, Book is sentenced to community service helping the families displaced on Europa for his actions (seems like a light sentence considering he could have started a war with an unknown species. For some reason, the United Earth General doesn't get punished for her role in helping Book and Tarka). The United Earth President (played by real world politician Stacey Abrams) arrives on Discovery to discuss Earth rejoining the Federation. She declares no discussion is necessary, and that Earth will immediately begin the process to rejoin (still find it a mistake that Earth ever left in the first place, especially when Starfleet is still shown to have so many human officers).

Anticlimactic season finale if you ask me. Everything gets reset to the status quo by the end of the episode.

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