Saturday, 21 February 2009

Star Trek: TNG 3.10 - The Defector

Review 141 - Episode 137 (1st Jan 1990)

The One with the defecting Romulan. Or is he?
Quite entertaining, but a simple concept at it's heart.

This is one of those episodes where a guest star comes on and we see how the crew react to him. In this case, a Romulan defector who tries to convince the Federation that the Romulans are preparing for war on a planet in the neutral zone. But is he telling the truth?

Picard has many good scenes this episode. From the unusual opener with Data enacting Henry V, through to his one on ones with "Setal" (who is in fact Admiral Jarok. A bit stupid to hide your identity when you're trying to convince your worst enemies to trust you). It's your usual Patrick Stewart performance, but it's still impressive.

Data has some cute scenes and his attempt to try and find his "guts" is normal Data fare, but still enjoyable. The holodeck sequence is a nice touch with Jarok (though if Romulous is so secret, how have they got google earth topography of it?) I also liked him being the witness to these events if it led to war.

Worf was doing his usual growling routine, more so with a Romulan involved, but the final twist with the Klingons couldn't have happened without him, so he gets points for that.

Riker didn't really have lots to do, bar being in most scenes and making that Riker face where his eyes narrow. His interrogation scene was ok, but I felt it could have had more.

Geordi was given the usual technobabble role, but had a nice conversation with Data, Troi was absent apart from the interrogation scene and Crusher healed Jarok and not much else.

So, very watchable, but once you know the basic story and twist, then there's not much else left on rewatching, bu the final act is still strong. Also, nice to see G'kar as Tomalak.

Overall Star Trek Franchise Rating so far: 409/700

Troi/Crusher Appreciation Society

Monday, 9 February 2009

Star Trek: TNG 3.9 - The Vengeance factor

Review 140 - Episode 136 (20th Nov 1989)
The One with the girl who has a killer touch
It's interesting to note that this is the last episode to be shown in the 80's. From here on in, the Trek Snowball gets bigger and faster in the 90's, before finally slowing down again in the 00's and finally stopping dead.
And the last episode of the 80's isn't terrible, but it's very average and not especially memorable.
Two clans who have been fighting for years try to broker a peace agreement with Picard (who else?) mediating. But Yuta is actually a genetic weapon who does not age and is looking to kill the remaining Gatherer clan.

The gatherer's look extremely 80's with there large hair and biker jackets and are quite enjoyable to watch. Riker's relationship with Yuta is okay and his decison to fry her at the end is dramatic, but not quite as heartbreaking as the writers wanted.
There's no getting round the fact that there are a lot of middling episodes round this time, but the good ones are coming.
Overall Star Trek Franchise Rating so far: 405/695
Troi/Crusher Appreciation Society

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Star Trek: TNG 3.8 - The Price

Review 139 - Episode 135 (13th Nov 1989)

The One with the dodgy wormhole

There's a stable wormhole and everyone wants to bid on it.

Troi has a rekindled love affair with a sleazy betazoid bidder, two ferengi are trapped on the other side of the wormhole when it becomes unstable and reappear in Voyager years later (in a very cute continuity moment) and Riker tries his best to win the bid. And Troi and Bev do gymnastics for no apparent reason in very unflattering leotards.

Not bad.

Overall Star Trek Franchise Rating so far: 403/690

Alternate Review: Tim Lynch -

Troi/Crusher Appreciation Society

Star Trek: TNG 3.7 - The Enemy

Review 138 - Episode 134 (6th Nov 1989)

The One where Worf finally becomes a Klingon

*yawn* getting tired here. Lets rattle through the next 2. This is quite good, a bit like "Enemy Mine", where two opposing soldiers end up trapped on a planet and become good mates. Galactica did an episode as well. So that's a good thread, as Geordi and a Romulan are trapped and need to be rescued.

What's more interesting is that they've rescued a Romulan, but he's needs certain Cells or something, blah de blah, and the only man onboard the ship is Worf and he fucking hates Romulans. So, the Rom is dying and you thing Worf is going to cave in and "do the right thing". But no, he sticks to his Klingon values and effectively tells everyone, "Fuck right off!" and the Ron dies!. It helps the dying Romulan is a total arsehole, but still, it's a bold move and was the first sign that this series can trick you and will do risky things.

Overall Star Trek Franchise Rating so far: 400/685

Alternate Review: Tim Lynch -

Trek Eye Candy

Star Trek: TNG 3.6 - Booby Trap

Review 137 - Episode 133 (30th Oct 1989)

The One where Geordi falls in love

I really liked this episode, with it's different threads merging into one.

The crew discover an old ship and Picard, Data and Worf go aboard. Picards enthusiasm for exploring the derelict comes across well and makes the scenes highly enjoyable.

They then find themselves trapped in the same booby (*snicker*)(sorry) that befell the other ship and only one man can get them out...

Geordi! But he's on the worst date ever! Finally, we get to acknowledge that he's not a eunuch and he has sexual interests. However, he's terrible at dating and it's only when he's in the holodeck and starts interacting with the female designer of the enterprise, Leah, that he starts to be himself. The Holodeck scenes are very interesting and it's fascinating seeing the Enterprise in dry dock being built.

They work a way out and Picard deftly pilots the ship out the asteroid field. This is a very good episode and thankfully gives Geordi some valuable screen time.

Overall Star Trek Franchise Rating so far: 397/680

Alternate Review: Tim Lynch -

Troi Cleavage Watch

Star Trek: TNG 3.5 - The Bonding

Review 136 - Episode 132 (20th Oct 1989)

The One with the little orphan boy

Ah well, just watched 4 on the bounce, so bang goes my spreading them out idea. Bloggers being a bit buggy with the pics, so they'll get posted later.

I find it hard to believe this is Ron Moore's first episode, because it's a stinker. An officer is killed on a an away mission, leaving her son an orphan, but he's not grieving as he should. Then an entity appears as his Mom and the boy bonds with Worf kindof.

I dunno, this was just garbage to me. Maybe if I was in the right frame of mind, I'd enjoy it, but I barely tolerated this episode.

Overall Star Trek Franchise Rating so far: 393/675
Alternate Review: Tim Lynch -

Troi/Crusher Appreciation Society

Monday, 5 January 2009

Star Trek: TNG 3.4 - Who Watches the Watchers

Review 135 - Episode 131 (16th Oct 1989)

The One with the peeping toms.

So, I thought, fuck it. If I'm doing this, I'm doing this right. Every episode, even if it takes 20 years.

And this one was okay, the prime directive being the main angle. The Fed's are spying on a "primitive" race, but their hideout is spotted. How do they uncontaminate the planet?

Picard has the "God" role and is played well by Stewart as usual. I'm not entirely convinced by his tactics of beaming up Nuria. How does this contaminate the planet less? Also, we're talking about a group of 8 people. Would that really change the planet? If you can accept these daft things, it's okay, but Picard goading Liko into shooting him with an arrow is just stupid. He's gonna shoot you Picard!
Riker and Troi have fun roles beaming down to the planet in disguise, but once Riker is rumbled, Troi is simply collateral.
Worf is pretty much AWOL as is Geordi. Bev and Data have some technobabble, but no main scenes.

I must mention the lovely outdoor shooting. Makes the episode much fresher than a dusty set.

It's a nice premise, but it will be done better in later episodes and Picard is actually quite stupid this episode.

Overall Star Trek Franchise Rating so far: 391/670

Factoid: Crushers big coat makes it debut this episode... Nah, can't get enthusiastic for that fact.

Troi/Crusher Appreciation Society

Thursday, 1 January 2009

Star Trek: TNG 3.3 - The Survivors

Review 134 - Episode 130 (9th Oct 1989)

The One with the really powerful old guy

Slow burner this one, but not bad. A devastated planet is lifeless apart from one tiny house and garden. Why? Picard investigates.

There are some nice outdoor scenes which always gives the show a breath of fresh air. The story is decent, but the kicker comes in the twist that is well played by the actors. i don't normally hide the twist, but I didn't remember it so chances are you won't either.

It's a decent episode that won't change the world, but kills an hour satisfactorily


Overall Star Trek Franchise Rating so far: 388/665

Troi Cleavage Watch