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Brian Miller
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Posted: 29 January 2019 at 4:12pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

So far, Mount pulls off a good Pike. I wish the Discovery had switched to the updated uniforms rather than Pike going to the outdated one still worn on it. 
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Marten van Wier
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Posted: 29 January 2019 at 6:19pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

...Pike’s Enterprise spinoff...

•••

That I might watch.

* * * *

I probably speak for many here that that is the kind of prequel we would have wanted to see instead of Enterprise back in the day and Discovery now.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 29 January 2019 at 8:27pm | IP Logged | 3 post reply

I didn’t find their “updated” Enterprise utterly revolting, and I wouldn’t mind modern production values on the sets. Plus, there’s a whole crew we barely know. (Intriguing thought: in his pitch, Roddenberry described Number One as a “Nile Valley beauty”. Diversity!!)
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Greg Kirkman
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Posted: 30 January 2019 at 2:10am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

I didn’t find their “updated” Enterprise utterly revolting,
++++++++

You’re fired!


Seriously, though, it is a step up from the Abramsprise. Not a big step, mind you, but the proportions are closer.

That being said, I am totally maxed-out on archaeological, cash-grab rehashes of old characters and properties. More often than not, it comes down to flash and dazzle which disguises horrible writing, and the trotting out and disgracing of beloved characters so as to prop up shallow new characters who are...well, horribly written. 

Is there potential for a Pike series? Sure. But, I have zero confidence that it could be done well in today’s filmmaking climate. Let the old characters rest. Don’t recast them. Don’t rewrite them. Create something new. No other STAR TREK series prior to the Abramsverse and STD went out of its way to strip-mine the original characters and concepts. There were just the occasional references and cameos. The focus was on new characters and new stories, rather than terrible writers skimming the Memory-Alpha wiki for TOS references so as to trick the fans into thinking they’re watching a show which respects the lore.

I’ve stated my opinion that rebooting TOS in 2009 was an ill-conceived desperation move designed to turn STAR TREK into a (hopefully more commercial) lowest-common-denominator product. STD has followed suit by falling back on Pike and Spock when they said they wouldn’t. To say nothing of the scorched-Earth approach to the lore they’re taking by rewriting Spock and his history. Ugh.

Personally, I think the character should have been laid to rest after Nimoy’s passing, as a gesture of respect. 

But, no, Spock gets trotted out so as to allow the thoroughly unlikable Burnham to leech off of him and get herself forced into the lore retroactively. Another case of The Next Big Thing being forced onto the fandom by making her integral to the story of a legacy character we actually do love. And, like a transplant gone bad, the body of the fandom is rejecting it. See also STAR WARS, DOCTOR WHO, and (likely) the upcoming CAPTAIN MARVEL.

I have a firm belief that, although these properties we love may whither and die, the lessons and the joy they’ve given us will continue on. The spreading consumer revolt of numerous longtime fandoms boils down to people no longer being willing to settle for lowest-common-denominator writing or politically-motivated writing. They want smart writing, relatable characters, and respect for what’s come before. Not flashy, shallow garbage with a familiar brand-name stamped on it. 

I find it all rather inspiring, actually. Maybe, down the road, we’ll get new and brilliant stories and characters which are driven more by love of the genre than commercial interests. 
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Brian Hague
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Posted: 30 January 2019 at 6:09am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

The Nile Valley reference was most likely Roddenberry priming the pump to cast his girlfriend in the role, based upon her long nose, high cheekbones, and resemblance to the bust of Nefertiti discovered in 1912.



Edited by Brian Hague on 30 January 2019 at 6:51am
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Brian Hague
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Posted: 30 January 2019 at 6:37am | IP Logged | 6 post reply

I find almost all of the Berman era to be a bastion of horrible writing and the few episodes of Discovery that I've seen to be right in line with that. The much-decried differences in tone are non-existent, and Michael Burnham, while a Mary Sue by virtue of her having been shoe-horned into an existing character's history, is far more personable and likable than the whiners and man-babies would have us believe. 

The "body of fandom," bloated with pizza, nachos, and entitlement, is far, far smaller than the echo-chamber shouters would have it, and Discovery is recovering nicely from its poor creative choices of Season One. It's an ongoing idiocy to paint diverse casting with a single brush and the high-sounding prevarications from the right still boil down to "cast white male leads or we will bawl our heads off and do everything in our power to torpedo you commercially."  

The writing on Discovery may not be particularly smart, but it is not a shade off of Berman, the characters are perfectly relatable, and the level of respect for what came before is about the same as the post-Henson Muppets. What's triggering the losers is the skin color and genitalia, the same charge they level at the casting directors employing people who, gasp, don't all look like Seth McFarlane and Adrienne Palicki. "You will not replace us! You will not replace us!"

Remember casting directors, the roly-poly chime ball "body of fandom" dictates the only brown allowable in lead roles be the color of their shirts.


Edited by Brian Hague on 30 January 2019 at 6:57am
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Richard Stevens
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Posted: 30 January 2019 at 8:36am | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Some people just don't like the 21st century, I guess. Not sure why they think that entitles them to an opinion about the 22nd or 23rd...
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Rob Ocelot
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Posted: 31 January 2019 at 8:30am | IP Logged | 8 post reply

SMG was on CBS' The Talk the other day, and the ladies of the Talk specifically brought up the rumors about a Michael/Spock romance angle. SMG very adamantly shot down the rumor.

Of course they are going to shoot down that kind of rumor... especially if it's their 'big bomb' surprise for the season.   SMG probably isn't authorized to spoil major plot turns, either.

Last season when Trek news sites were speculating about Javid Iqubal being a made up actor to hide the fact that Shazad Latif was playing two characters Latif also denied this in interviews.   I figure though, if you throw enough iterations of the plot points against the wall you are probably going to guess right at some point.   Same deal with a Michael/Spock hookup because that seems like the most logical "OMG, I can't believe they did THAT" type of attention-getting event modern TV writers seem to love.

I'll be pleasantly surprised if this M/S rumor turns out to be wrong but I won't be at all shocked if it does bear out.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 31 January 2019 at 9:00am | IP Logged | 9 post reply

...SMG...

•••

My brain insists on reading this as Sarah Michelle Gellar...

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Tyler Kloster
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Posted: 31 January 2019 at 10:25am | IP Logged | 10 post reply

Another case of The Next Big Thing being forced onto the fandom by making her integral to the story of a legacy character we actually do love. And, like a transplant gone bad, the body of the fandom is rejecting it.
------------------------------
(EDITED to add: I misread Greg's comment. I took the last line I quoted to be about the show itself, but realize now he was specifically talking about the Michael/Spock element of Discovery. I'll leave the rest of my post as is, but wanted to acknowledge my mistake.)

Greg, I know you very badly want this to be true, but I think your opinions are clouding your observations. It is undeniably true that many Star Trek fans, and many TOS fans like yourself simply do not like Discovery, as is your right. But to claim that "the body of the fandom is rejecting it" is not necessarily borne out of reality.

CBS has reported that the debut of Season 2 led to an even higher number of new subscribers than the show's first season did, and it has thus far been met with heaping amounts of praise from both fans and critics alike....the writing, the direction of Jonathan Frakes in the second episode, the casting and performance of Anson Mount as Captain Pike.The fact that the series is already getting its own spinoff with Michelle Yeoh surely shows that CBS is thrilled with its reception, yes?

I don't begrudge anyone for not liking it---the first season had its rough spots for me as well, and not everything worked. But I've been a Star Trek fan for over 35 years now, grew up with and loved the original series and its movies, and I love Discovery and its characters. It's the first Star Trek series I've loved since DS9, and I eagerly await each new episode.


Edited by Tyler Kloster on 31 January 2019 at 10:34am
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Peter Martin
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Posted: 31 January 2019 at 12:16pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

I would still like the show to up its smarts, but it is an entertaining watch. I came back from my hols to quite a backlog of recordings on my DVR -- and I was quite happy to sit through back to back episodes of Discovery.

I'd echo other comments made here that I'd rather Spock was left out of it and that the success of Anson Mount as Pike has been a pleasant surprise. I appreciate that they haven't tried to make the role to the MAX in any direction; just a good, capable, likeable character.

Saroo continues to endear himself to me, as does Stamets. They have slowly built up a half-decent cast of characters. And I look forward to the next episode. And the reveal of Jean Grey as the season's big bad. 
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Rob Ocelot
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Posted: 01 February 2019 at 9:48pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

"Point of Light"

Well, that was interesting.  

If last week felt like TOS, then this weeks Klingon intrigue and Sec. 31 shenanigans were very reminiscent of TNG and DS9.   

Notes:

*In just under 30 minutes we transition from the incongruent Klingon portrayal of the first season into something that actually has some visual and spiritual coherence with the rest of STAR TREK -- yet it doesn't retcon that first season away.  Well done.  This is what the first season should have been.

*I'm happy to report that Klingon blood has now turned back into a shade of Pepto-Bismol pink.   

*A nameless orphaned child who has no right of parentage is sent to Boreth to be raised as a monk... how subtle!  (Hint: this is the same monastary where Worf witnessed 'Kahless' return from the dead).  

*Oh yeah and then there's the (subtle) Story Of The Promise from TNG "Rightful Heir":   

"You are Klingons. You need no one but yourselves. I will go now to Sto-vo-kor. But I promise one day I will return." He pointed to a star in the sky, and instructed the people to look for him "on that point of light."  

*(edit) Not to mention the criminal Klingon known only as 'The Albino' who tussled with the family houses of some of the TOS Klingons.   In particular, The Albino's parents were murdered by Kor's family.   (DS9 "Blood Oath")

*I wonder what Dr. Boyce would have to say to Pike about violating the confindentiality of Spock's medical records  (Then again, Boyce doesn't seem like one to always follow the books either).  Michael has no problems rifling through Spock's quarters in on the Enterprise in the last episode but now balks at decrypting his medical records?

*I'm not so sure I can reconcile Spock being a murderer, even if it happened when he wasn't of sound mind or posessed by some other entity.   Wouldn't something like that follow you around for the rest of your Starfleet career?  In the very least the fact that Spock might be capable of such violence would mean that he was not in any way suited for a command position -- he's still tehcnically guilty of manslaughter.   This show likes to give free passes to this sort of 'not-my-fault-because-it-wasn't-me' behavior -- witness Ash/Voq murdering a Starfleet officer yet he's not in a Federation mental facility but allowed to free and live on a non-Federation world.   (edit: It's probably going to be handwaved later as Section 31 trying to frame Spock)

*Spock's existential crisis sounds like a retread of the spiritual brick wall he hit when he failed to complete the Kolinahr and sought out V*ger in TMP.

*Can we stop the slow-burn buildup now and just have Spock appear and say something?   The longer they draw this out the more I'm dreading that Ethan Peck isn't going pull this off.

*Again in the vein of ENTs Vulcans-really-are-assholes concept we now have Logical Extremist groups who would resort to murdering a child.   The philosophy of IDIC seems to be ringing hollow on Vulcan these days.  Kind of makes the Romulans look like peaceful saints, doesn't it?

*So what did Michael do to Spock that was so horrible? (yep, it's pointing to either kissyface or kinky mindmelds -- yuck)

*Michael was actually well-written in this episode.  She's much more watchable and SMG seems to be acting a little less wooden -- I think the better direction and editing are helping this a lot.   The scene where  Michael talks Tilly through her 'issue' was pretty much perfect.  

*The continuation of Tilly's thread in this episode feels a lot less annoying than last week.   Still, man... she should be in sickbay under guard.

*Err... was that... Prime Universe Lorca with a shaved head on the Section 31 ship?   edit:  It's not, apparently it's a character named Leland.


Edited by Rob Ocelot on 02 February 2019 at 7:10am
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