Sim

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  1. Episode 1.5 "Choose Your Pain" Discussion Thread

    My wife and I are still loving the show. I see there is quite some speculation about the identity of Lt. Ash Tyler and Stamets' mirror effect in the end... one thing is for sure: I'm really glad that I have really no idea where the authors are going to go! Some wild speculation: As for Lt. Tyler, that he's a Klingon spy is an interesting idea... maybe he's even a genetically or surgically altered Klingon? Maybe the key to explaining the different types of Klingons (IF they're going to give an on-screen explanation after all)? Or maybe he's some kind of Section 31 agent who'll later play a role in giving Burnham a new job? (<--- assuming Burnham won't stay "tolerated prisoner by grace of Lorca" for the rest of the entire show -- she could be hired by Section 31 or something? Also, I could be wrong, but Lorca's backstory somehow demands for a kind of resolution, perhaps he's more a "one season only"-kind of baddie, much like the baddies on shows like "The Walking Dead" ... and once he's gone, Burnham will need another reason for staying on the ship.) And the mirror effect? Could be parallel universes, as Robin said ... or could be some kind of "possession"? Who knows what he brought with him from the mycelium network... On the bottom line, after 5 episodes, I really like the show. Although I still have slight troubles feeling a familiar "Star Trek feeling"... but episode 5 was the best episode in these regards already, with the Tardigrade story and Harry Mudd. A minor complaint, though: Michael Burnham is so far the least interesting character in the show, IMO. That's a pity, as she is clearly the main character. But I can't help it, the other characters impress me more: Stamets (very sympathetic), Saru (interesting new alien race), Lorca (formidable baddie), even Tilly (unusually insecure for a Starfleet officer, but fun)... just Michael Burnham remains weirdly bland, so far. Well, maybe that's going to change. I'm more than open to learn where they are going with her, anyway.
  2. Funny bit I didn't know: A friend who's into gardening told me he loved they called the scientist Paul Stamets -- as the real Paul Stamets is "the Pope, the Messiah and the Santa Claus of funghi breeding and mykology". He's read two books by him.
  3. Wow. Just watched the episode with my wife, and we totally loved it. SPOILERS: Yes, it's much darker in tone than previous Star Trek ... but all the elements that are there to make it dark have precedents in Star Trek: Like someone said above, we had the USS Pegasus, the military interest in the WMD capacities of the Genesis project, conspiracies in the fleet, twisted bodies and so on ... nobody can say these dark elements are not in Star Trek's DNA. Except it's much more explicit this time. So despite the unfamiliarly dark tone, it's all very familiar! My first thought wasn't "Pegasus" (well okay, that too), but Project Genesis. Biology on the submolecular level? Sounds like Genesis. I love how shades of grey the characters are, and the entire situation. Still no flawless, morally superior hero around. But is this truly Star Trek? What about the moral optimism? At least there are hints that Burnham will, despite her questionable past, uphold a moral standard and "do the right thing" in the end -- not because she's a flawless character, but as part of her personal learning curve. That's a great idea. If that's going to happen, it won't be entirely without precedent either, think of Riker in "The Pegasus". The hostility Burnham meets after boarding the Discovery reminds me of what they were trying to do with Tom Paris at first, but failed to keep up. So, this all is very much Star Trek, IMO! Also, this episode was really thrilling and gripping. At least it felt so to me. I liked the first two episodes already, but the show IMO made another huge leap forward and I'm beginning to love it -- at very least, I'm absolutely hooked now. And Burnham herself? I already find her much more sympathetic than in the first two episodes. (Last week, I was more like "let's see where they are going with her", but now, I even start sympathizing with her). Only complaint: That quoting of Alice in Wonderland, like her attempts at poetry last week, are campy. Please stop it. Also noticed that this episode is 48 minutes. Guess the short runtime of the first two episodes was indeed just because they were on regular network tv.
  4. Maybe I got it all wrong ... but I took it like it was the whole point that Burnham is NOT the "smart and good person": She's irratic and impulsive, despite her Vulcan education, and when she attempts heroism, it backfires big time. I think it was intentional that we're not supposed to like her on first glance, because that's what her redemption character arc that is going to follow is supposed to do, over the course of the season. At first, I was a bit confused too, because with old Star Trek, classic heros were a given. I was not prepared for seeing an anti-hero. But IMO, that's really the most fundamental departure of DSC compared to old Trek -- we're supposed to sympathize with a flawed character, rather than a hero. A bit like Tom Paris' backstory... except it's actually more realistically depicted this time -- in case of Tom Paris, they cheated around his character premise by making him too relatable from the beginning, and not even showing his "dark past". This time, we get to see it all.
  5. Hey Founder, great points, and good observation! Upon first viewing, many of the cons you name irritated me too -- although my bottom line feeling is much more positive. I especially noticed the lack of the ship Discovery, the lack of an introduction of its crew and the main characters, and Burnham's irratic, unrelatable character. But ... after quite some thinking, I told myself this: This is not a pilot episode of a new Star Trek show. It's episode 1 and 2 of a fully serialized show like "Game of Thrones" or "The Expanse", that will feature a complex arc and character development over the course of entire seasons. All we got to see so far is just the prehistory of Burnham's character. The new format does not allow a pilot episode like the old shows had -- where we get introduced to all characters and the ship that will be in the focus until episode 178 --, simply because there will be no such strict focus for DSC. The focus will be Burnham, so it was her backstory. Perhaps the show will be less static than previous shows, perhaps even main characters may be killed off during the course of the arcs, much like in the other new serialized shows of this age. So when Burnham appears hard to relate to, irratic or even irrational in the beginning? That's perhaps part of the idea -- she'll get a character growth arc, over the course of which we're supposed to grow to like her. It's the whole point that she is NOT the flawless, likable hero we expected her to be, because we're used to Star Trek main characters being that. No matter how she'll end up on the Discovery, despite her life in prison, perhaps the crew of the ship will meet her with skepticism and resentment at first, too, and her arc is about how she redeems herself? At least that's one possibility. And the fact that the entire first 2 episodes are dedicated to Burnham's backstory, that hints at the scope of the upcoming arc: Rather than just tell her backstory in a few words (like in case of Tom Paris in the VOY pilot), we actually get to *see* it with our own eyes. If I'll love the show and the character by the end of the season, I'll perhaps think in retrospect, it was amazing we got to see this backstory, rather than just being told it in a few words. It feels more epic this way. As for the new Klingon look ... yeah, I had to gulp too for a moment... so hard to see these new Klingons as the same race as so many beloved old characters ... but on the other side, I appreciate they truly look alien again. Also, I subsume this under the "this show needs to appeal to new NuTrek fans, too" design paradigm. I guess I'll get used to it. Much like I once got used to the new Klingon look and style in "The Search for Spock".
  6. Yes, I absolutely agree. It's great that it's very new -- we already got "old" Star Trek, so there is no justification for just remaking it. And then, after the 4th watching, it feels much, much more familiar to me now... I was just overwhelmed by all the new impressions during the first viewing. When I rewatched it, after having gotten used to the new elements, the familiar elements jumped to my eye much more. So now I feel this is a very intriguing, promising start for a new Star Trek show. The visuals are clearly designed in a manner to get the NuTrek fans on board, too, which isn't a bad thing: The show *has* to look modern in 2017. I don't mind the new Klingon design either (no matter if we'll get an onscreen explanation in the end or not). It's great the look truly alien again. But apart from design, the show's most fundamental departure from "old" Trek is IMO that for the first time, there is an anti-hero at the center: With all the old Trek in mind, you would have assumed that Burnham's plan miraculously works out and she'll be the hero at the end. Not so here. It backfired big time, she screwed up and now is a pariah -- amazing! That is truly new in Star Trek. I'm looking forward to Monday to see how it all continues ... On the bottom line: I'm hooked.
  7. Just watched it and have a hard time getting my thoughts on it into an order... so much new input all at once! First of all, I liked it. This was a very promising start of an amazing looking SF series, and it makes me curious about how it's all going to go on from here. Plus the visuals and sets are impressive, it really looks amazing. As for the characters, it only focused on three characters, one of which is dead by the end -- too early to say much about it so far. Burnham is interesting, but I don't have the feeling yet to know much about her, after two episodes. Guess that's what the rest of the season is for. But for the most part, I had troubles considering it a Star Trek show. It did not feel like Star Trek to me ... at all. Doesn't mean that in a bad way: It was really good. Just that I somehow feel on first impression, it appears to be closer to shows like "The Expanse" or even "Game of Thrones" than to "old" Star Trek -- two shows I really like. But I never had this "wow, this feels familiar"-Star Trek-feeling, or even hints of nostalgia. But maybe I just need some time to process all the new impressions, let them sink in and rewatch the episodes. So for the time being, after first watching? Most promising new SF show. But if I'll be able to convince myself it's in the same universe, or has anything remotely to do with the old Star Trek shows, time will tell.
  8. It's IMO a very promising show, but I had troubles getting into it for the first 3 or 4 episodes, too. It takes quite some time to set the stage. But especially the world building gets even more detailed and once the main characters are introduced, it picks up some steam, and there are some nice hard-SF elements here and there. I suspect you'll enjoy it.
  9. The Third Season in Pictures

    I agree about season 3... it still has quite a lot of gems. And I guess my least favorite episode goes to "Alternative Factor" from season 1, rather than to a season 3 episode: This episode is just an incoherent mess that doesn't make much sense (to me at least) ... while the bad season 3 episodes at least are *spectacularly* bad, so they are at least remarkable and memorable.
  10. Alien Covenant

    Based on all the things you write on the movie, I'm torn ... on one side, I wonder if I should even bother watching it, on the other side, a morbid curiosity to see with my own eyes how bad it actually is...
  11. Lots of New Information on Discovery

    Sounds like a good plan! I have to admit, judging from the pictures, he does have a vague Stewardesque vibe...
  12. Lots of New Information on Discovery

    The pictures do increase my anticipation... at very least, the show looks good! As far as I am concerned, I'm ready for DSC... Does that mean you'll give DSC a chance after all? :D
  13. Hello from BolianAdmiral

    Hello again! STD is "Discovery"? You already know you'll hate it? So... are you in the "the visual reboot doesn't match the TOS timeline" camp? We had quite a few debates on this topic ...
  14. The Third Season in Pictures

    I even love the totally terrible TOS episodes... "Spock's Brain" and "That Which Survives" are so bad, they're even good. Years back, a couple of friends and I would watch these episodes when drunk... fun guaranteed! Even "And the Children..." has that cute scene of Kirk grabbing Spock's arms in the turbolift ( it was in this episode, wasn't it?) -- the K/S-happy friend of my wife started squeeking! That alone made the episode worthwhile. And "Way to Eden"? IMO not quite the same league of bad... I love Spock sympathizing with the hippies (great idea!), and the backstory for Checkov, regardless how cliché it is. Also, space hippies were perhaps a much better idea back in 1968, than they appear in retrospect -- and today, you can watch this episode as a document of contemporary history. So... the episode is far from good, but a bit underrated, IMO.
  15. Alien Covenant

    Still haven't seen the movie.
  16. We're breeding "Generation Who"! Last night, my daughter chose the DW "The Vault" as book I shall read for her right before bedtime (well, "reading" in most cases just means looking at the pictures and explaining a few things about them... she's still a bit impatient about entire read stories most of the time). She was especially fascinated by the guy who builds the masks. And this morning on the way to daycare, she'd repeat things she had seen in the book... my wife had to explain to the daycare teacher: "If she's telling you something about Santa Claus and pilot fishes... don't worry, that's Doctor Who!" My wife jokes that she's the "Doctor Who-child" anyway, because when my wife was pregnant with little one, we watched a lot of DW together, so little one was conditioned on the theme in the womb already (okay, now I worry for little one #2, because she is the "X-Files child"... but she won't get to see that until she is much older...)
  17. I agree about the trial stuff... the Doctor really doesn't shine here IMO, his behavior is too much over-the-top. In general, I realize that I like the Colin Baker episodes the least of all Doctor stories... many of them are rather awful. But still, it's the Doctor, so I rewatch them! Then I continued: "The Ultimate Foe" was a bit creepy in a surreal way at time... the hands grabbing from below the sand reminded me of the technically much superior "hand mines" in Capaldi's season 9 opener. :D Then went on to the 7th Doctor: "Time and the Rani", "Paradise Towers", "Delta and the Bannerman", "Dragonfire" and "Remembrance of the Daleks". That's more like it! Sylvester McCoy's Doctor is really decent, IMO. "Paradise Towers" is a favorite of mine. The surreal setting with the slightly anarchic undertones and references to urban subculture reminds me of plays of a famous "alternative" youth theatre here in Berlin (I think I mentioned that before). When I watched "Delta and the Bannermen", my little daughter (now 3.5 years old) joined me at some point... I told her it could be scary, and if she's scared, I can switch off... but she was very curious. She was pretty scared, yet fascinated by the hatching of the alien baby, but then very relieved when in the next scene, the green baby was in the arms of her mother. :D Before it got too violent, I switched off to continue later. Little one is now fascinated by Doctor Who: She found my DW compendium and patiently studied all the pictures, asking many questions. I think soon she'll be able to tell which Doctor is which. :D Since she got a plush Dalek, I showed her a couple of scenes from "Remembrance of the Daleks" too, and she was amazed. She proudly declares "I'm going to watch Doctor Who when I am bigger!" now! As for "Twin Peaks", I got to catch up: Still haven't seen episode 3.15. But it's waiting for me!
  18. Or read the ENT relaunch novels after watching the final episode. They give the show a worthy ending beyond the unfortunate final episode. I've never been an ENT hater. When it first aired, I liked it, because I felt it was a *huge* improvement over VOY. However, in retrospect, it's not quite up there in the same league as TOS/TNG/DS9 for me. The first three shows all build on their respective predecessors and each take the universe one step further, they IMO are at the core of Star Trek, while ENT is the decent addition you might or might not watch. The first season is not bad for a first season of a ST show, the second is okay, but leans too much towards recycling old plot elements and tropes and is severely lacking bold ideas. I still can't stand the militaristic Xindi-arc in season 3, but there are a couple of decent standalone episodes in that season. And yes, season 4 is really great. Had the show lived on for another 3 seasons in that style? It might have ascended up to my favorite ST shows.
  19. Hello from BolianAdmiral

    Hello Bolian Admiral, nice to meet you! If I may ask: Which Star Trek series is your favorite, and which do you like least? Looking forward to reading from you!
  20. I felt like rewatching some Doctor Who lately: "The Five Doctors". I liked it even better this time, after the "new" release of "Caves of Androzani" got me in the right mood for some classic DW. Then I watched some episodes with Colin Baker: "Mindwarp" and "Terror of the Vervoids". The former is IMO a good example for the weakness of the 6th Doctor's episodes... I liked it even less than I remembered it. It was so bad, it was really hard at times for me to focus on the convoluted story. But the latter is one of the stronger Colin Baker episodes. Then I felt I need some David Tennant, to remember how amazing DW can be: Watched "Tooth and Claw" and "School Reunion". Tennant (and Rose) is still my favorite...
  21. "Game of Thrones" episode 7.07. Amazing season finale... so much has happened so quickly this season. A bit annoying we'll have to wait another year until we see the conclusion ...
  22. Opinions on DSC's supposed TV-MA rating?

    On German tv, the exploding head was cut out of the episode on free tv until they started using the remasters in the early 2010s. The uncut VHS release got a 16+ rating, IIRC. When I first saw it, I was a bit surprised, because I did not see it coming, and it's pretty strong in the context of TNG's usual graphics.
  23. The Klingon Redesign?

    So we're going to deal with somewhat fanatic Klingons who are anxious "to remain Klingon". Yay! Sounds like an amazing analogy to real world elements: Make Klingons great again! (And keep out the aliens.) Hope I'm not reading too much into it, but if DSC manages to give a skilled comment on today's rising fear of over-alienation in many Western societies, that could be great.
  24. Finished "The Leftovers" with the final two episodes, 3.07 and 3.08. A pretty good series, IMO. Lots of psychological depth... a more "intellectual" kind of mystery show. And the ending was IMO appropriate -- it didn't strike me as cheap or so, that the solution to the disappearance mystery was somewhat fable or proverb-like, but I felt it was rather a smart, elegant understatement. And the two main characters got a formidable closure, too... only I wish the supporting characters would have gotton a little more attention. But still, great show.
  25. Classic "Doctor Who", 5th Doctor: "The Caves of Androzani". The copy of the German release I ordered had arrived today... even got a "Limited Edition" copy. It's the first German release (including a dubbing!) of a DW episode that had never been on German tv. The publisher financed a dubbing exclusively for this release, pretty amazing! I hope it sells well and the publisher is going to release more classic DW episodes... One thing about the dubbing (which overall appears decent to me) is odd, though: They hired the same voice actor again who already dubbed the 6th and 7th Doctors almost 30 years ago... which means three of the old Doctors now have the same voice in the German version. I'm not sure I like this concept... on one side, it underlines that the Doctor is supposed to be the same character, regardless of the actor. But on the other side, I feel this voice doesn't match Peter Davison very well (while he IMO was pretty good as Sylvester McCoy's 7th Doctor). Judging by a German DW forum I visited, it were the old school fans who asked for the same voice actor again. It seems for the "old" fans in Germany who already watched the 6th and 7th Doctors 30 years ago, this concept and the voice actor are iconic ... but as a new fan, I'm more used to the NuDW concept of casting a new voice actor for each new Doctor. Anyway, I hope IF there will be German releases of Tom Baker episodes at some point, they'll choose a different voice actor...