Stellar Watch: Viewing Notes for Star Trek: Discovery, Season 3, Episode 1 @CBSAllAccess #StarTrek #DISCO

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I’m excited to watch the season premiere of Star Trek Discovery tonight. Why? Because the alternative is a town hall with either Biden or Trump (written on 10/15/2020). Plus, I love Star Trek. This is, after all, why I bought a subscription to CBS All Access. I don’t plan on doing viewing notes for every episode; just this one.

Burnham arrives in the future. This is something every space show gets wrong. If you choose a random point in the universe, the overwhelming odds are that it’ll be empty. Yet here she is, showing up in a mess of junk and running directly into a ship.

Gee. It’s a good thing Burnham landed on a class M planet. What are the odds? See above.

Book really can’t fight. Give me the first punch, and you’re going to sleep. Plus, phasers have greater range than knives. It’s not an even trade to separate. She’s still a threat, and you’re no longer one. Dipshit.

The Burn!

A dilithium recrystallizer?

Star Trek IV The Voyage Home - Admiral there be whales here! - YouTube
You cannae do that, not even in the 23rd century!

Oh, wait. Nevermind.

In other news, my spell check doesn’t recognize “dilithium” or “recrystallizer.”

I just saw Morn!

Yep. That’s Morn (you know what I mean).

Amazing that the animal’s goo is everywhere but on Michael’s face.

The red-leaved trees are an obvious homage to the opening scene of Star Trek Into Darkness. That movie deserves no references.

Why is everyone whispering? Speak up. I can’t make out what you’re saying.

Overall, this is a very interesting take on the Star Trek universe. I’m eager to see where this season goes.

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“Unknown Unknown” Perils of Space Travel @StarTrek #StarTrek #space

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Sundays are now lazy days for me. Going forward, I’m just going to re-post other people’s work or just do something silly. Today, however, it’s serious. Neil DeGrasse Tyson and other assorted space scientists always caution us about the “unknown unknown” perils of space travel. This is an example of such a peril. Who could possibly have anticipated this?

Image may contain: one or more people, people standing and people walking

At least now we know to look for space rabbits. You’re welcome.

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Mr. Rourke Had a Fantasy Too @StarTrek #StarTrek #FantasyIsland

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Sundays are now lazy days for me. Going forward, I’m just going to re-post other people’s work or just do something silly. Today, it’s a preview for tomorrow’s post. You see, Mr. Rourke had a fantasy too.

Please. It’s Kirk. Even Mr. Rourke couldn’t pull off that feat.

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Swapping Kirks via Deepfake @WilliamShatner #StarTrek #Deepfake

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Sundays are now lazy days for me. Going forward, I’m just going to re-post other people’s work or just do something silly. Today, it’s using Deepfake to swap the Original Series actors into 2009+ Star Trek.

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Travelling Through the Star Trek Universe, Part X. Viewing Notes on Star Trek X: Nemesis. @SirPatStew @DinaMeyer @StarTrek @CBSAllAccess #StarTrek #movie

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We end this series on CBS All Access with this movie, otherwise known as Star Trek X: The Search for Data. I’ve written about this one before. It’s one of my entries in my Guilty Pleasures series.

I love this intro, especially the music.

How convenient that tharalon radiation is green. The Romulan Empire has always been assigned a green motif.

Oh, crap. Denna Troi is going to cry again.

Considering that Romulan ale is illegal, it sure pops up a lot among Federation personnel.

I guess Worf has been studying up on ancient Earth composers since the last mission.

Worf is a prude.

“You have the bridge . . . Mr. Troi.”

Why didn’t they catch shit for this line?

I feel for Picard here. I plan to buy a Jeep Wrangler next month.

We’re within several kilometers of the signals.

That’s not very precise.

It appears that B-4’s clothing is actually a part of him rather than something he wears.

Suddenly they can pinpoint the signal to within a few meters?

There’s no way that jeep would make that jump. It’s too far.

So much for the Prime Directive.

The Enterprise is always the closest ship.

There’s no way the Federation flagship goes to Romulus unescorted. Many episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation made mention of how the Romulans were going to capture the Enterprise and dismantle it to learn its technological secrets. Going in alone seems naive.

So Data no longer uses his emotion chip?

Considering how strong B-4 is, it was rather reckless to assemble him. They didn’t need him to be assembled in order to speak with him.

They’ve been waiting for 17 hours? That seems like a waste of time, and not just for the Enterprise. As we eventually see (SPOILER ALERT!), Shinzon is in a time crunch.

Is Ron Perlman in every movie?

It’s not dark enough that Picard shouldn’t already recognize Shinzon.

They should have known he was evil the second they saw he was Bane.

Was Picard always bald?

The busted lip and crooked teeth are a nice touch. They’re subtle and non-distracting, yet hint that he’s lived a rough life.

Oh, Dina Meyer. Even as a Romulan . . . .

The Romulans must be thinking, “Out of the frying pan; into the fire.” That’s assuming they fry food. Who knows?

Picard’s clone was intended to be the perfect nemesis (get it?!) for Picard in order to relive the magic of the Wrath of Khan. They didn’t quite achieve that. Shinzon’s statement of motivation later in the film isn’t as convincing.

When I saw this dinner scene, I knew Tom Hardy would be something special.

Shinzon’s backstory is some kind of rough.

A Starfleet captain standing in the Romulan Senate!

Well, only Nixon could go to China.

This scene with Picard and Crusher in the ready room reminds me of a strange, human (American?) custom. We often sit on desks. Think about how rude that is.

Boom-chicka-wow-wow.

The whole psychic sex thing is stupid. What was the point? Was it just a set up to explain (SPOILER ALERT!) how they eventually pierce the cloak? All that dumb for just a single photon torpedo. Why not use what they did in Star Trek VI?

So Shinzon also prefers hot tea. Does that mean genetics determines what you drink. Am I a Picard?

Worf! Shields up!

Because you don’t want there to be any chance of getting Picard back? No wonder you haven’t gotten a command yet, Riker. Someone inform Starfleet command before he takes command of the Titan!

I always noted that for a Reman, no/stop was accompanied by the color purple, and okay/yes by the color yellow (unlike humans, that use red and green). Of course you should expect those differences to exist from culture to culture, but not all shows appreciate that kind of detail.

Picard gets to pilot another vehicle unsafely.

Good thing those hallways are Original Series level of stupidly big. Otherwise, they could never have flown that ship through the hallways.

Leave it to Dina Meyer to be the ethical Romulan.

I guess it makes sense that a Romulan ship can now fire while cloaked, but that’s a big ship expending huge amounts of energy on weapons and shields.

Dina Meyer to the rescue! “You heard the lady! Let’s get to work!” She should have returned in Picard.

Now that Shinzon is in the final stages of his genetic breakdown, his complexion is now identical to that of a Reman.

The Scimitar’s bridge has even more wasted space than the hallways.

*sigh* Here we go. We have to give Riker his moment of glory. I never liked the character.

What the hell? A character that never had a speaking role and we’d never seen before this movie gets killed off? I never saw that coming. The poor guy doesn’t even have a picture on IMDB.com. Here you go, buddy.

Recognition!

Ramming speed! Everyone talks about it; only Picard has ever actually done it, and it was pretty cool. The look of confusion on the Reman helmsman’s face at 1:28:33 was priceless.

I have a lot of respect for psychologists, but the day one is put in command of a naval vessel is the day that navy loses the war.

Why doesn’t Data use his super-strength to screw with the ship’s arms. According to Geordi’s analysis, mess up just one arm, and the thalaron weapon may not work.

I’ve seen people on social media ask, “Do you think you could beat up your younger self?” Picard gets to find out, though he has an added advantage. Shinzon is a bit sick.

I don’t buy Shinzon’s death here. He could just stop running forward and not get stabbed. Plus, that bar had a blunt end. It wouldn’t have stabbed him. Maybe it would have busted a rib or something.

Like Khan, Shinzon assumes he’s killed his nemesis (get it?!). He dies before he realizes that Picard escapes.

On screen.

Ha!

Oh, is Deanna going to cry ag…. Yep. There it is.

Data was trying to whistle, Pop Goes the Weasel, dipshit. I hate Riker.

Wait. Why is Worf still on the ship? Why isn’t he on his way back to Deep Space 9? Is the Enterprise just going to drop him off like a taxi? I think they have actual space taxis for that.

I also like the ending music that segues into the Original Series theme, and then ending with the Next Generation theme.

Maybe they should have done the same signature thing that they did with the end of The Undiscovered Country. If Avengers: Endgame could steal it, why couldn’t Star Trek steal it from themselves? It seems the appropriate thing to do.

And that concludes my viewing notes for Star Trek X: The Search for Data.

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Travelling Through the Star Trek Universe, Part IX. Viewing Notes on Star Trek IX: Insurrection. @SirPatStew @StarTrek @Hulu #StarTrek #movie

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And now we’re back to Hulu. I’m going to do my best to be kind to this one. It’s easily my least favorite Star Trek film, but like Iron Man 2 in the MCU, that still means it’s good enough.

Didn’t they already do this episode?

Data shouldn’t have lost control like this, but sometimes the writers don’t know how else to get the story started.

Does this personal cloaking technology, which we’ve never seen before despite its incredible usefulness, violate the treat with the Romulans?

She’s a super freak! Super freak! She’s super freaky! Yow!

It doesn’t seem like this medical procedure uses any anesthetics.

We know that Troi and Riker get married in the next movie. Is the basis of their rekindled relationship the effect of the Briar Patch? It certainly appears so (despite Worf’s later save).

Another excuse for Patrick Stewart to sing. 😐 Anyway, why should Worf, a Klingon, be expected to know who Gilbert and Sullivan are?

If the away team is going to draw phasers the moment you they arrive, why aren’t they drawn before they beam down?

Boom-chicka-wow-wow! Doc Ock wouldn’t be pleased with Picard honing in on his wife.

Admirals really like to hang up on people. Hold on. Do you kids even know what “hang up” means?

What I need I can’t get from Dr. Crusher.

Don’t be so sure, Riker.

Why does that caterpillar have humanoid eyes?

If she really couldn’t swim, she’d be dead already.

The Briar Patch gets Geordi new eyes and everyone else laid. Except Worf. He gets a pimple.

Apprenticing for 30 years seems tedious. Besides, nothing takes that long to become a professional. For example, it doesn’t matter how far engineering progresses, you still need no more than a four-year degree to reach the minimum level to be a professional.

In 300 years, you never learned how to swim.

Exactly my thought.

Boom-chicka-wow-wow!

We are betraying the principles on which the Federation was founded.

No, actually, you aren’t. As Admiral Dougherty points out, the Prime Directive doesn’t apply. Picard engages in some Captain America-level of naïve bullshit. If one person (Vision) is willing to sacrifice himself for trillions of lives, you let him. Same thing here. I don’t know exactly where the line is drawn, but trading the (unnatural) convenience of 600 for the health of billions is a fair trade, especially where the 600 settled on a world that was already Federation property. “But . . . but . . . but the kid and his caterpillar!” He’ll get over it, and so should you. Sure, the script turns the Son’a into murderers, but that’s so you can see them as the bad guys and justify some silly “principles.”

No, seriously. How the hell are you doing that? A time stop spell? It makes no sense.

I’ll be in engineering.

Why weren’t you there in the first place, Geordi. Haven’t you been chief engineer since season 2 of Star Trek: The Next Generation? Why are you at navigation?

If the ensign isn’t good enough to work navigation, he should be at navigation on the Federation’s flagship. The captain shouldn’t do everything. Maybe Riker would be a captain by now if he understood that.

And now he’s using a joystick to run the entire ship. Is there any doubt as to why this is my least favorite Star Trek movie?

So, the kid runs back to find his caterpillar thing, and not a single adult stops him?

Why would a medical chair have a locking mechanism on it? When I was younger, I was told to sit on my hands during a medical procedure, but that’s the only constraint I’ve ever had that I recall.

So, the Captain’s chair on a Son’a ship is a gaudy, 1970s couch?

Good trick to fool the Son’a.

This is F. Murray Abraham’s “Khaaaaan” moment.

But I have 318 days of shore leave coming, and I intend to use them.

With whom, Picard? Anij? Nella? Vash? Until we have resolution for any of these relationships, I’m assuming each one gets 106 days with him. Maybe 104. He probably needs some alone time on his vacation.

Wait a second. I don’t think Picard actually had sex with Anji. Bummer for him.

Damn, that was a weak entry in the series.

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Travelling Through the Star Trek Universe, Part VIII. Viewing Notes on Star Trek VIII: First Contact. @SirPatStew @StarTrek @CBSAllAccess #StarTrek #movie

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Still on CBS All Access for this one.

Hey, Locutus. Once a Borg, always a Borg.

New ship; new outfits.

Double dream sequences are stupid.

Finally, some Romulan . . . . Oh. No. It’s just a reference to their existence. No Romulan threats in this one either. When am I going to get my damn Romulans?!?! (In two days, actually.)

If Starfleet sees Picard as a potential ally to the Borg, then why is he still captain of the most important ship in the fleet?

Considering the urgency, Data’s delivery of “to Hell with our orders” was too slow.

Despite not being able to act drunk (neither could Marina Sirtis), James Cromwell played a great version of Zefram Cochrane. Sometimes history forgets the bad parts of a character, remembering only the good parts. Some think that’s a bad thing; I don’t. However, I believe we should remember that these heroes of history were ultimately just humans. They were as flawed as the rest of us.

The Enterprise’s internal sensors suck. How did they not know the Borg transported over?

The song playing in the bar is stupid.

Alfre Woodard can’t play a “tough guy.” It’s just not believable.

And you people, you’re all . . . astronauts. On some kind of star trek.

The idea of a Borg queen completely undoes the meaning of the Borg. It didn’t ruin things for me — not even close — but I didn’t like it.

And now we’re back to not having money in the 24th century. Amazing how that goes back and forth.

Phasers don’t work, but a tommy gun does.

“Taking a leak” has lost all meaning. Nice touch.

I liked how the script had somewhere to go after Data installed the emotion chip, focusing on touch. And the callback to Data’s line to Tasha Yar before bumping uglies was a good bit of nostalgia. However, I didn’t need to see robots making out. Not hot.

Stunning may not hurt, but the fall you take after being stunned probably does. You could also drown if you wind up face first in a creek.

Worf saves the day!

Who the hell has Moby Dick memorized? I’m sure some people do. I know a part of Rime of the Ancient Mariner that’s just as long because I listen to Iron Maiden, but if someone randomly mentioned a book, I wouldn’t be able to quote it. Picard’s knowledge base was always unrealistically broad. He also speaks fluent Latin. I call bullshit.

There we go. Magic Carpet Ride is a better choice of music.

Data and the Borg Queen Totally Had Sex and 6 Other Things We Learned From  Jonathan Frakes' Star Trek: First Contact Commentary - IGN
Data didn’t turn evil? I did not see that coming!

It would have sucked if the Phoenix had just blown up due to faulty design.

I doubt Picard could have torn the queen’s spine in two. It’s probably too durable.

How does the queen’s death matter if she isn’t really dead?

The TV series Enterprise had a better version of the First Contact scene. 😊

According to the Entropy Effect, Vulcans don’t like to shake hands.

Overall, this movie seems to be a bit overrated. It wasn’t bad by any stretch, but it was nothing more than the best of the Next Generation crew’s films. For me, that places it behind most of Kirk’s films. I do like the soundtrack, but I like all the Star Trek soundtracks, so that’s a low bar.

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Star Trek Intakes #StarTrek #NCC1701 #TV

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Sundays are now lazy days for me. Going forward, I’m just going to re-post other people’s work or just do something silly. In light of this post appearing between my viewing notes for the Star Trek: The Next Generation movies, today is a series of Next Generation bloopers that were put back into the shows.

If you don’t like this post, please note that the original subject of the post was deleted from the internet. I was in a rush. 🙂

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Travelling Through the Star Trek Universe, Part VII. Viewing Notes on Star Trek VII: Generations. @SirPatStew @WilliamShatner @StarTrek @CBSAllAccess #StarTrek #movie

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For the start of the Next Generation movies, we return to CBS All Access for a couple films (with my usual Sunday distraction in between), bounce back to Hulu, and then end at CBS. I’m writing this on September 8, the day the new trailer for Star Trek: Discovery, season 3 dropped. I’m looking forward to some more new Star Trek, but here’s some more of the old to get me ready.

The Old (and Older) Crew

Even in slow motion, the champaign bottle took an awful long time to hit the ship. Without an atmosphere or severe gravity to alter its course, that at least makes sense.

Oh, it’s an Excelsior class ship! Of course!

Chekov and Scotty were originally supposed to be Spock and McCoy. Nimoy didn’t return (and allegedly turned down a chance to direct) because of script issues, and Kelley had health issues.

It wouldn’t be an Enterprise without a Sulu at the helm.

These silly callbacks — Sulu’s daughter, Chekov reminiscing about youth — are actually pretty good for an old timer like me.

The most important message to come away with from this movie is that the media never changes.

Captain Harriman seemed too green to be the captain of the Federation’s flagship. At least he knew he was out of his league and sought Kirk’s advice.

John Connor’s stepmom, Vasquez. I guess she was in the Navy after leaving the Marine Corps.
I knew Tuvok was a fake Vulcan!

Did Guinan always dress in silly hats?

Kirk was the best captain . . . until Anson Mount became Captain Pike. I guess we’ll see if that holds up. Mount has some big shoes to fill, but he seems like he’s going to.

The New Crew

The fake indignation isn’t funny to me. We get it. You’re not actually angry at Worf. Oh, hardy-har-har-har.

I hope there aren’t any sharks in that holodeck ocean.

I always had a thing for Gates McFadden.

In response to my claim that the Shatner is a “so bad it’s great” actor from my Star Trek V audio blog post, Kessel Junkie wrote a retort defending the Shatner’s acting chops. Either way, even he must admit that Sir Patrick is a better technical actor than the Shatner. In fact, he may be the best actor ever to appear in Star Trek.

Finally, we see some Romulans in a Star Trek movie! Oh, crap. They’re dead. Never mind.

Why is Data’s emotion chip so different from how it appeared in the tv show? This drives every Star Trek fan nuts. Not only is it an inconsistency, but it’s an unnecessary one. It’s appearance in the TV show was more realistic, and there was nothing “neat” about its new appearance (as with the Klingons).

It’s too dark on this ship. I wish someone would turn on the damn lights.

I liked Data’s introduction to emotions. It was, at times, overacting, but that makes sense considering what was happening.

Whenever I see a character pretend to talk but not make a sound, I’m always reminded that the Screen Actors Guild contracts dictate that without lines, the actor receives far less pay. Star Trek did that a lot to save money.

The special effects on Data’s face were basically the same we saw with Bilbo Baggins when he tried to take back the ring from Frodo. And they were just as unnecessary.

Damn, Sir Patrick can act.

I’d always heard that some of the actors playing the main characters doubled as Klingons. That rumor probably came from the fact that some background roles were played by the main cast’s stunt doubles. This explains why, for example, one of the Klingons looks like Levar Burton.

If Geordi was unconscious before he was transported, how was he standing when he arrived on the transporter pad? If he was lying down when transported, why not arrive lying down?

Human females are so repulsive.

It seems like a small class G-12 Bird of Prey shouldn’t be able to wreak so much havoc on a Galaxy class ship that can take them out with one photon torpedo, but okay.

Yes!

Why would a force field have a hole in it like that?

That teddy bear won’t survive the warp core breach.

Closing that hatch by repeatedly pumping a mechanical arm seems like very old tech.

Yup. There goes the teddy bear.

Oh, shit!

Soran is a lousy shot, and an even worse tactician. Just shoot a bunch of times to make sure you don’t miss. It’s not like he’s going to run out of ammunition for his disruptor, and collateral damage isn’t an issue.

No seatbelts? They’re far too reliant on inertial dampeners that never seem to work when they’re needed.

Without an epee or foil, Picard is useless in a fight. That’s why Riker had to go on all of those away missions instead.

Well, this scene hits home. But who the hell dresses like that at home? And why is Picard still in his Starfleet uniform.

That kid’s too old for a toy like that. My fellow nerds may not like that statement, so let’s try this: That kid is at an age where he’d see that toy as beneath him.

Who has a carousel in his home?

So, if Picard leaves the Nexus and prevents Soran from ever entering the Nexus, what happens to the Soran that’s in the Nexus? That’s not an “echo” of Soran; it’s actually Soran. If this is another multiple universe thing, then Picard doesn’t exit to his own universe, so every movie that follows is in another universe as well.

All you guys who think Picard is a better captain than Kirk, note well that Kirk is Picard’s hero.

Stop trying to rush things, Picard. Time has no meaning here, dipshit.

It’s my house. Or at least it used to be. I sold it years ago.

Sold it for what? I thought they didn’t have money in Kirk’s time. Didn’t the director see Star Trek IV, or did he limit himself to the Trouble with Tribbles? I guess they’ll go back to having no money in the next film.

It’s a good thing that door opened into the stable. That could have been awkward.

This isn’t your bedroom.
No, it’s not. Better.
Better?!

I’m with Picard on this one.

I bought the Generations soundtrack almost immediately after I saw the film. I love Jumping the Ravine, and many other tracks.

Oh, great. We’re in an alternate universe.

They reshot this fight scene because Kirk’s death was deemed too cheap for the test audience.

Seriously, Picard can’t fight for shit.

Good luck, Captain.
Call me Jim.

Picard’s reaction reinforces my position that he’s starstruck.

Hooray! Alternate universe Soran is dead! So is prime universe Riker, along with the rest of the prime universe Enterprise crew. What a happy ending.

Kirk’s Death is another musical piece that captures the scene perfectly, but I would not have buried him on that planet. Kirk deserved better. Picard has lost all points I’ve previously given him.

In most cases (e.g., Tony Stark in the MCU), I don’t want a character to be resurrected because it cheapens the loss in the prior script. Kirk’s an exception. I’d love it if Shatner would reprise his role. It’ll never happen, though.

Someone’s going to have to clean up that mess of a shipwreck.

Felis catus is your taxonomic nomenclature,
An endothermic quadruped, carnivorous by nature;
Your visual, olfactory, and auditory senses
Contribute to your hunting skills and natural defenses.

I find myself intrigued by your subvocal oscillations,
A singular development of cat communications
That obviates your basic hedonistic predilection
For a rhythmic stroking of your fur to demonstrate affection.

A tail is quite essential for your acrobatic talents;
You would not be so agile if you lacked its counterbalance.
And when not being utilized to aid in locomotion,
It often serves to illustrate the state of your emotion.

O Spot, the complex levels of behavior you display
Connote a fairly well-developed cognitive array.
And though you are not sentient, Spot, and do not comprehend,
I nonetheless consider you a true and valued friend.

I’m so glad Spot survived.

And one last musical piece I love from the soundtrack: To Live Forever.

And to close it out, an Oberth and a Miranda class ship complete the bridge between the old and new Star Trek. Nice touch.

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Growing-on-Me Watch: Star Trek Lower Decks @StarTrek @CBSAllAccess #GoodWatch

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Star Trek: Lower Decks is CBS’s attempt to capture the magic of Rick & Morty without losing its target audience. That would seem to be a tough sell: trying to do something but tying one’s hands in an important aspect. It certainly started that way. It’s first couple episodes fell flat for me, but even Futurama had a boring first episode. All first episodes are set ups.

Five episodes in, it’s finally growing on me. It’s better than Star Trek: The Animated Series, which was ridiculous. (There was only one good episode, and it was good because the third act was ridiculously funny.) This doesn’t mean I’d ever re-watch and episode of Lower Decks, but it’s decently entertaining, and I’m already paying for it. The gimmick with this series is that its main characters are ensigns rather than ship captains and senior officers. However, the higher-ranked officers get far more attention than was initially advertised, so they don’t really stick to the gimmick.

I think CBS missed the mark on this one, but if it fills the gap between the other shows such that we always have Star Trek, I’m on board. A low production budget show to fill that gap may have been the idea. Besides, Lower Decks may get better.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to watch today’s episode. As always, YMMV.

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