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Best of Trek: Star Trek VI // The Undiscovered Country

July 19, 2014

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Plot: The Klingons have over-mined their moon, Praxis, making half of it blow up and endanger their home planet somehow. According to the UN, they have 50 years before it becomes uninhabitable [judging by how smoggy it looks in TNG episodes, I’d say Klingons can tolerate quite a bit]. Spock volunteers Kirk to escort the Klingon Chancellor to peace talks on Earth, and Kirk invites everyone to dinner so he can insult the eye-patch commander with a Hitler reference. Before long, the Chancellor is dead, the Klingons are angry and Kirk is arrested for assassination. McCoy is also arrested due to gross incompetence. Chekov is Russian.

Subplot: Spock is training Samantha from ‘Sex and the City’ to be the new Spock. Scotty, Uhura and Chekov do their jobs, the same jobs they’ve always done. Sulu is captain of a ship he’s willing to fly apart to get more screen time.

What’s so good about it?

After Star Trek 5, Kirk meets Howard the Duck would’ve been regarded as a step up, but this one goes way beyond that. I don’t like to do comparisons because most of the Trek films are shit, but this one is definitely in the top three, probably behind ‘Wrath of Khan’ and ‘Insurrection’.

Insurrection?

Yes. The one in my head where there’s an actual insurrection, preferably involving Romulans or Klingons, and not just Picard and other old people running away from flying robots trying to transport boring people onto a ship neither deadly nor particularly dirty and…it wasn’t even their home planet, why couldn’t they just…

The Klingons

If you’ve read ‘The Final Reflection’, which was the first book to flesh out Klingon Culture, you’ll know how interesting they are. They’re not as one-dimensional as the Original Series often paints them to be…yes, they like to fight, but they also like to strategise, drink, fuck, laugh etc., and some of them even like to do these things with other aliens.

In this movie, you get one guy [the Chancellor] who is quite charming and respectful, and you get another guy [Chang] who is a wolf in wolf’s clothing. I really don’t know why Kirk doesn’t suspect him as one of the traitors as soon as he steps off the transporter pad. He looks like a killer, and every line he says is laced with threat. Not sure about the Shakespeare quotes though… Read more…

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Seven of Nine, Tertiary Adjunct of Unimatrix Zero-One

July 13, 2014

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Be warned, this is not really an analysis of the character, more a look at why she was wearing that skin-tight uniform and why it was such a problem with some people.

Written by 2 Takes Frakes

SOME BACKGROUND ON 7 OF 9, FIRST:
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Jeri Ryan has aged pretty well, but in The Nineties, she was a blonde
bombshell with bulging eyes and puffy lips like some anime character
and a really nice rack. But more, even than this, she was – and is –
fairly talented. In a lot of ways, having landed the role of an
unassimilated Borg in STAR TREK: VOYAGER, around this time, she proved
herself to be the precursor to Cylon #6 of Battlestar Galactica.

The Seven of Nine character would first appear in the two-part episode
“Scorpion” and after a massive publicity campaign, VOYAGER’s sagging
ratings jumped sky-high. Her form-fitting catsuits and Ice Queen
demeaner proved a huge hit with fanboys. She was born into a Human
family which had been assimilated by The Borg. Her birthname was
Annika Hansen, and even though Seven’s connection with The Borg had
been severed, once she became part of VOYAGER, she never reverted
back to her original name. But she did have lots of flashbacks, over
several seasons, regarding her Human childhood. Still, Human emotions
remained difficult for her to contend with as she found herself
becoming VOYAGER’s Science Officer – echoing Mister Spock, in some
ways.

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In every other way, however, Seven of Nine – with plenty of help from
Jeri Ryan’s hot body – was raw sex-appeal. She started out wearing a
silver catsuit that was kind of ribbed, in an interesting way. And her
ASSets were enhanced to the Nth degree with this “uniform,” but the
raised collar had caused her some problems. Eventually, we would see
Seven of Nine in the standard, form-hugging catsuits worn by Deanna
Troi (Marina Siritis) of STAR TREK: The Next Generation. And like
Marina, Jeri had more curves than a bowl of oranges. Read more…

Game of Thrones Season 4 Review [Spoilers]

June 19, 2014

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There are about fifty thousand characters in this show at present, but there were four who dominated this season:

Oberyn

The Hound

Arya

Tyrion

[Special mentions to Davos, Tywin, Jamie, Brienne and Littlefinger, but they did pretty much what was expected]

First up, the imp. It was obvious Tyrion would be strong, he always is – he just gets all the best material even though half of the season forced him to sit on fake straw in a prison cell and wait for people to come and talk to him.

Remember when Ned Stark was in the same cell? Not half as interesting. As honourable as Ned was, listening to him talk was like watching a footballer being interviewed. Of course I would like not to be executed, but I’m just taking things one day at a time. It’s really out of my hands, it’s up to the gaffer [Joffrey] whether I live or not. Of course I’m not happy to be in this cell, but if I sit hard, keep my head down then hopefully I can get the fuck out of here and back to that shitheap of a castle up near Sunderland or wherever.

Tyrion on the other hand, said this [to Pod]: ‘I’d like to think that if I had engineered his [Joffrey’s] death, I wouldn’t have left myself to stand gawping in front of everyone when it happened.’

And this [to Bronn]: ‘You’re an evil, amoral bastard, but that’s why I liked you to begin with.’

Then there was the trial, where Tyrion channelled late 80’s Sean Penn and told the posh half of King’s Landing to go fuck themselves. Great stuff. I did wonder where all those soldiers who had seen Tyrion step up at the Blackwater had gone to, but I guess they were all too low-born to get into the throne room for the trial. People do gossip in King’s Landing though, so it must’ve been publicly well-known that Joffrey was a dick and Tyrion wasn’t.

Maybe they did know and that’s why a lot of people were cheering Oberyn in the trial by combat? Or maybe it’s because he elaborately spun a spear around his head? Read more…

Best characters of Trek: General Martok

May 5, 2014

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Who? The only Klingon apart from Worf who wouldn’t stab you in the back

Which series? DS9, where recurring characters are treated like kings.

Episodes: I think his first appearance was in ‘The Way of the Warrior’…then he disappeared until the first episode of Season 5, where it turned out that he was a changeling. After that, he cropped up about 10 times a season, either as a main player or in a B plot cameo.

Is he better than Jeffrey Combs? Equally good.

What about the basketball playing Klingon from TNG? Smaller, but better.

What’s so good about him?

Martok is great for at least seven reasons, and as I have time to kill and can’t think of any new ideas for my ‘Psycho-Holosuite’ story, I’m gonna run through them all:

1] He’s a Klingon with honour stuck in an empire run by the Klingon equivalent of Rob Ford [Gowron].

Actually, that’s a little harsh on Gowron. I don’t think he ever let his crack smoking get in the way of his scheming. But the point stands. Martok is the first Klingon we meet on the series who isn’t either a barbarian or a backstabber.

In fact, let’s do a roll-call of all the Klingon motherfuckers in TNG and DS9 up to this point:

i] Heart of Glory Klingons – misguided and sneaky. They were traitors to the Empire, which to be fair, was also sneaky and corrupt. Okay, they weren’t that bad when you consider the context, but they clearly weren’t admirable either [they killed 2 nameless security guards on the Enterprise!] Read more…

Liberal Fans Want STAR TREK Out of the Closet

April 7, 2014

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“Slash,” such as a Kirk/Spock romance in Fan Fiction, has been around
as long as STAR TREK has. And, I guess, that’s cool. Some of it even
borders on being actually funny. And while all of this is going on,
there is also a very vocal group of STAR TREK fans, perhaps emboldened
by the “slash” that’s so prevelent, continues to harp on – and
complain about – the supposed lack of homosexual characters,
in this franchise. The fact that STAR TREK – right out of the gate –
chose to hire homosexual actors is not enough for them (George Takei
and Merritt Butrick, as examples). The fact that there have been a
number of lesbian, onscreen kisses, one or two being in the “Mirror
Universe” (alternate dimension), is not enough for them. What do they
want to see? Hairy-legged women and limp-wristed, effeminate men?
All for the appearance of being – supposedly – “Progressive”? Yes,
there are gays in the military. There probably always have been. And
thanks to President Obama, the United States military now has Gay
Pride Parades, on base. with special Gay Marches, to celebrate the
road least travelled. Read more…

Lon Suder the heroic sociopath

March 20, 2014

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Who? The sociopathic lieutenant who graced 3 episodes of Voyager in Seasons 2 and 3.

Played by? Brad Dourif i.e. Chucky the killer doll from ‘Childsplay’

What did he do? Killed an engineer who looked at him funny. Lurked. Meditated. Killed off-screen Kazon in engineering [might not have been Kazon, could’ve been set-designers]

Punishment? Kicking back in deluxe single, ensuite quarters for the rest of season 2. More scenes with Tuvok.

What happened to him in the end? Shot in the back by Kazon after re-embracing his violent core and saving the ship.

Did he get a memorial? I doubt it. That would’ve been far too interesting for Voyager.

Details:

Possibly the only sociopath Trek ever attempted.

I suppose you could say ‘Dukat’ in DS9, but he was too passionate to be a sociopath. Or maybe Weyoun is a contender…he did have a creepy aloofness about murdering those 2 million Cardies in Lakarian City.

But he was a bad guy…Suder wasn’t. He was just a guy. A guy that we saw for the first time when it was plot-relevant for him to murder someone.

This is one of the things that bugs me about Voyager. It’s a ship of 150-odd people, lost in the Delta Quadrant, no star-bases to exchange crew members…so why are the only recurring crew members we see Hogan [who gets eaten by a dinosaur], Ayala [the really tall security guy who gets one line in seven seasons], Ensign Vorek [possibly the least interesting Vulcan in Trek] and the first Chief engineer who disappears for six seasons before returning in season 7 to be executed by a group of fundamentalists living in a cave? Read more…

The unbearable lightness of Carol Marcus

March 13, 2014

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Audrey Hepburn, a really cute actress from the 1950’s, had this to say
on beauty:
“The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure
that she carries, or the way she combs her hair. The beauty of a woman
is seen in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the
place where love resides.”

Oh, Audrey, I know what you mean! I’ve always enjoyed seeing myself
reflected in my woman’s eyes, for this very reason. It makes me feel
… as if I am peering into that doorway to her heart, and finding
that it’s me she’s thinking of. I really like blue eyes, too. But I’m
not really attracted to blondes all that much, though – and I wonder
why. I suspect it’s the contrast of gold on white that’s the deal
breaker.
Not so, with Alice Eve!

I love everything about this woman. I even love her sexy little
accent, even though it’s completely inappropriate for the role of Dr.
Carol Marcus on STAR TREK: “Into Darkness.” As everyone knows, A
middle-aged Bibi Besch – who looks nothing, at all, like Alice Eve –
had originally essayed the character in STAR TREK: “The Wrath of Khan”
and her performance was memorable. As were the varied and lame excuses
as to why Alice Eve dropped her drawers so needlessly during her turn
as Carol Marcus. And despite the many heart-felt apologies for it, it
was apparently heavily discussed beforehand, and It featured heavily
in all of the commercials, too. Read more…