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Category: Star Trek (page 1 of 2)

Star Trek Picard and Game of Thrones

I described my disappointment with STP in my last post.

In this post I just want to link to a very interesting video where “Major Grin” shows how Alex Kurtzman admits to being influenced by the success of Game of Thrones and  wanting to introduce a “darker tone” into the new Star Trek series. He says “nobody complains about having to pay for GOT so we have to do the same”.

He also shows us how comfortable is he with “the F word”. He thinks that introduction of swearing into Star Trek is “kind of wonderful”.

The video has quotes from Kurtzman and also has scenes from both Discovery and Picard showing where these series paid homage (to put it kindly) to GOT.

The man is an idiot imho. If we want to watch GOT then we will watch that. If we want to watch Breaking Bad then we will watch that. Your job was to give us new Star trek.

Six things I hated about Star Trek Picard

I mentioned in a previous post how disappointed I was with Star Trek Discovery (STD).

In spit of that, I managed to get a little excited about the prospect of Star Trek Picard. I guess the excitement came from Patrick Stewart and the character of Picard.

So how that season one is over, I can list (in no particular order) six things I hated about STP.

Disclaimer: because the show was so  poor, I wasn’t paying the closest attention. So please forgive me if I overlook something or if I get something wrong here.

1) The swearing, the gore, and the violence

This is mindless and gratuitous. It was unnecessary and has no place in the work of Star Trek. I will come back to this again in another post.

2) Major things that make no sense to me

The Romulans (specifically the “Zhat Vash”) have been working for generations to prevent devastation from synthetics. So when they finally bring their fleet to the Android planet, they are unable to kill the androids firstly because of some trickery, and then because Riker arrives with his fleet. These are supposed to be fanatics which have had visions about the devastation which synthetics will bring. They don’t seem to behave like true believers when the chips are down and all of their fears are coming to life right in front of their eyes

3) Minor things are make no sense to me

What the hell was that all about when those flowers (?) came up and brought down our heroes’ ship and the Borg ship?

What the hell was that mysterious device all about and how were the Romulans tricked by projections of non-existent ships?!

What was that about when our heroes went to that planet in stupid disguises (hats and eyepatches!) and, in Picard’s case, with a stupid accents?

4) Picard becomes an android

In the final episode, Picard dies and his consciousness is transferred into an Android body. But:

  • That body has been designed to look like him and to have his physical characteristics (strength, age, etc.)
  • We are asked to accept that the transfer was complete and that the Picard we know and love is in that new mechanical body and all set for season two

5) The story arc of Dr. Agnes Jurati

Agnes is given the vision of the devastation which synthetics will bring to the galaxy. She is so affected by that that she kills her mentor and lover. But:

  • She is never held to account for that murder. I don’t know if anyone even rebukes her about it! She should have to stand trial for that murder
  • The effects wear off so completely that she is able to tolerate and even help the actual synthetics a few episodes later!

6) Elnor

I am trying to imagine the writers room when they came up with this character:

  • We should have someone who looks like an elf from Lord of the Rings
  • Oh yeah. And he should fight with a sword and throwing weapons like a ninja
  • Yeah and he will somehow be able to hold his own in fights with people who have phasers and the like
  • Yeah but he should be sort of naive and innocent and not really know what is going on most of the time

Pathetic really.

There are more things I could talk about but I think I’ll leave it there for now. It was nice to see Riker, Troi and Seven appearing but tbh I didn’t really like what had been done with their stories in the intervening years.

One final note: I don’t know why Picard had two Romulans working for him at the start of the season, but I liked that Irish actress Orla Brady played the part of Loris and that she did not hide her own accent. It was fun to see a Romulan with an Irish accent

Star Trek Voyager

I had never really watched much STV until recently.

I decided to give it a chance for three reasons:

  1. It is easily available on Netflix
  2. I figured I should give it a try after the disappointment of STD
  3. I listened to an interview with Kate Mulgrew on Ryan Tubridy’s radio show and I was really, really impressed by her

I decided to watch all of the episodes with an IMDB with the highest ratings, generally 8.6 or higher.

The following is a list of the episodes I watched:

Star Trek Voyager Episodes
Episode Title
S03E23 Distant Origin
S03E26 Scorpion: Part One
S04E01 Scorpion: Part Two
S04E08 Year of Hell: Part One
S04E09 Year of Hell: Part Two
S04E14 Message in a Bottle
S05E02 Drone
S05E06 Timeless
S05E10 Counterpoint
S06E12 Blink of an Eye
S06E26 Unimatrix Zero: Part One
S07E01 Unimatrix Zero: Part Two
S07E24 Endgame Parts One and Two


I have reached the following conclusions about the series:

  1. The series is quite good, and some of the episodes are very enjoyable
  2. It took until near the end of the third season for an episode to reach the 8.6 rating
  3. The series ended on a high, with an enjoyable episode also rated at 8.6
  4. I can see myself going back to watch more episodes. For example, I see there is one which features George Takei as Captain Sulu

Since I wanted these episodes, I saw a video of Kate Mulgrew being interviewed and the interviewer mentioned that STV is the most watched Star Trek series on Netflix. So I’m not the only one who is rediscovering this series.

Star Trek Discovery – the first two seasons

I did a post about STD before.  That was after watching the first two episodes.

I have now watched the first two seasons. And things aren’t much better.

The main problem is still the same: I can see no reason to like the central character, Michael Burnham.

In the first two episodes she had committed mutiny, started a war, and failed to save the life of her captain.

Since then she has fallen in love with a Klingon who has been converted to a human (Ash Tyler – I don’t really know what that is all about) and she seemed to spend most of season two crying for one reason or another.

The series is littered with unsympathetic characters: Burnham, Tyler, Lorca, new Georgiou, Leland, etc. How does any showrunner expect people to like a show where there are so few likeable characters?

Some people do like Doug Jones(Saru) and Mary Wiseman (Tilly). I quite like Tig Notaro (Reno).

But the main glimmer of light was the appearance of Anson Mount, Ethan Peck and Rebecca Romijn and Pike, Spock and Number One respectively. But that is only for another potential spin-off show as there is no reason for them to appear in the next season.

The most interesting episode was the one where they go (for no real credible reason) to Talos IV, linking back to “The Cage” from TOS.

I also recently watched the extra short episodes which are available under “Trailers and More” in Netflix. Nothing of any real merit there either.

The show has a rating of 7.4 on IMDB (compared to 8.3 for TOS, 8.6 for TNG, 7.9 for DS9, 7.8 for Voyager, and 7.5 for Enterprise).

Here is a picture of Pike, Spock and Number One:

Make Your Own Star Trek Episode

The sets which were used to make Star Trek Continues have been purchased by a gentleman by the name of Ray Tesi. He is promising to keep them safe.

But the even better news is that (if you can make your way to Kingsland, Georgia) you can make your own fan film there and it only costs $300 to rent the sets per day!

I think that’s amazing value for anyone who has a dream, a cast, cameras, mics, etc. and a story!

Ray’s company is now called “The Neutral Zone”.

Details about hiring the sets are available here.

Here is a link to a Star Trek fan film vignette which involved Ray in writing, directing and producing roles.

Star Trek Continues – No Longer

Back in November 2017 I make a post about looking forward to the last episode of “Star Trek Continues”. Later that month the eleventh and final episode was made available on the website.

The penultimate episode had received a rating of 9.3 on IMDB – the highest of the series to date. The last episode surpassed that with a rating of 9.6.

The last episode does what the team set out to do, and what the original series never managed to do – it brings the five year mission to a conclusion.

The episode itself is very good. But I have to say that the last ten minutes (from Kirk’s speech to the crew on, it very subdued and a bit of a downer). I think it’s a pity they decided to end it that way.

Still, the series itself is excellent – and a great tribute to the love and dedication of all of those who worked on it.

Overall the series has a rating of 8.0 on IMDB – very impressive for a fan production, especially when you consider that Star Trek Discovery (with all of the money that was put into it) has a rating of 7.4

Star Trek Continues – but not for much longer

Episode 10 of “Star Trek Continues” is available on the website.

It is the penultimate episode. The last one will be released in a few days – on the 13th of November.

It is very good.

I saw an interview with Vic Mignogna where he said that he thought the fans would be happy with the way the show ends (although fans like me will not be happy that the show has to end so soon!) The second last episode has the highest score on IMDB so far : 9.5 (the previous highest was 9.0).

There is a moment in the show which is astonishing though. So astonishing that I had to pause the video to check what I was seeing.

I mentioned in a recent post how a young Sean Young appeared in BR2049. But that was not astonishing as they had some much money available to achieve the effect.

What astonished me was that the Romulan Commander looked uncannily like the actress from the original series (in the episode “The Enterprise Incident”).

A little bit of research (thanks IMDB) told me that the new actress is Amy Rydell. The previous actress was Joanne Linville. The latter is the real life mother of the former.

What a stroke of genius! I am so impressed!

Here are photos of the two ladies side by side: Joanne is on the left, Amy on the right.

I am very much looking forward to the last episode.

Star Trek Discovery – the wait is over

So the first two episodes of Star Trek Discovery are available on Netflix. I watched them earlier this week.

There had been a lot of negative commentary about the series before it aired so my expectations were low.

Mark Zicree (Mr. Sci-Fi), for example, had a YouTube video called “Klingons are dull”  which spoke about problems on the show and speculated that a decision had already been taken that there would only be a single series. It also (as the title indicates) talked about the fact that the Klingons are not the most interested subject (a sentiment I echo – I had no interested whatsoever in TNG episodes that focused on Worf or the Klingons).

So having seen the first two episodes I can say that low expectations were justified.

The things I disliked most – in additional to there being too much about the Klingons of course – were (spoilers ahead):

  • The opening scene which (a) had no apparent purpose and (b) ended up with the two lead characters making a sign using footprints in sand (what the hell!)
  • The opening titles are awful. So different from the other series and so poor.
  • The lack of any chemistry between the crew members. Captain Georgiou and Michael Burnham (the two lead characters) were supposed to have worked together for years and to be very close but there was absolutely no sign of this (other than some of the things which they said)
  • The actions of Michael Burnham when she commits mutiny (what the hell!)
  • I can’t believe that they cast Michelle Yeoh as the captain (I was very happy about his, of course, as I’m a big fan) and then allowed her to fight a Klingon where (a) she showed none of her martial arts skills and (b) she was killed! Why would you cast he in this way? Maybe the production team cast her without even seeing “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” (what the hell!)
  • The Klingon ship summoned other ships using “photonic activity”. These ships were light years away presumably and these photos would have been travelling at the speed of light surely!!
  • The scene where Michael Burnham escapes from the brig (what the hell!)
  • The bit where the hologram of Sarek sits down on the deck in (what the hell!)

Further to these last three points: I remember how Gene Roddenberry hired scientific advisers in the original series to help to make sure that what they were saying and showing had at least some basis in science. It is clear that no scientific advisors have been hired on the new show.

I have watched some videos where people (including Mr. Sci-Fi) review the two episodes. Marc Zicree, made the following observations:

  • He said that he didn’t believe most of the words coming out of people’s mouths. 
  • He talks about Georgiou and Burnham beaming over to the Klingon ship and how ridiculous this would be (and against every principle which has been established in previous series!)
  • He talks about how the episodes seem to be too much based upon “set pieces”.
  • He also observed that there is no warmth or humour, and no apparent commentary on current issues or events.  Other reviewers mentioned that the team has said that the Klingsons are supposed to be based on Trump supporters and they pointed out some very contradictory elements of this supposed analogy

Observations by other reviewers include:

  • They talk about the clumsy over emphasis on casting female, black, and Asian actors in the lead roles.  All of this has been done before in the Star Trek series.
  • People are particularly critical of the Michael Burnham character and, indeed, the actress. As well as being very poor and very unbelievable, they observe that nothing which happens in the first two episodes allows us to have any empathy for or interest in her. How can see be the central character?
  • One person noted that the initials for the series are STD and how appropriate this may be!

So I am planning to watch some more episodes (there will only be 15 after all apparently) but I am not expecting much.

Here is Mr. Sci-Fi’s review:

Star Trek: The Animated Series

in 1973 and 1973, most of the actors from Star Trek were reassembled to make an animated version of the show. Season One had 16 episodes and Season Two had a further 6.

This was between the finishing of the original series (1969) and the making of the first movie (1979).

I had seen bits and pieces of the series over the years but when it appeared on Netflix I decided to watch all of the episodes.

Well I find this very hard to believe, but there is hardly a single episode in the whole series which has even the slightest merit.

IMDB rates the episodes between 6.1 and 7.4, with the single exception of the second episode, “Yesteryear”, which has a rating of 8.2.

This episode was written by D.C.Fontana and features time travel and “The Guardian of Forever”. The episode also sees Mark Lenard reprising his role from the original series as Sarek (the only time he did so in the animated series).

Here is a still from the episode showing Kirk and Spock:



New for fans of Star Trek

In this post I talk about a number of updates for fans of Star Trek.

The first relates to “Star Trek Continues” I which I mentioned previously.  That series is now up to 8 episodes! The most recent episode (“Still Treads the Shadow”) provided an interesting acting challenge for Vic Mignogna who plays Kirk.

The second relates to the upcoming office Star Trek show: Star Trek Discovery. While I wouldn’t normally have much excitement about this kind of show (I don’t think I watched a single episode of Star Trek:Enterprise) I am excited to see that the fabulous Michelle Yeoh has joined the cast and appears in the new trailer:

The show will be released in the Autumn and will be available on Netflix the day after it premiers in the USA.

The third is about a new spoof show called ” The Orville” which will was created by and will star creator Seth MacFarlane, and will be directed by Jon Favreau.

While the trailer is far from hilarious, it does look promising.

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