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RumHam

Star Trek: Keeping Up With the Cardassians

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Apparently the Discovery was built with that magic spell from Harry Potter that allows interiors to be extremely larger than how they appear from the outside.

Spoiler

I started chuckling like a madman at the elevator scene, and it totally ruined the episode for me. JJ Abrams levels of disregard for physics, plot boundaries, and general Star Trek lore.

Of course Burnham became captain, that was to be expected. Her plot armor was dialed up, too, this episode. I noticed she was limping when she got Book out of the infirmary, then she wasn't when she got to the data core room, then she was again.

At least the finale didn't end in another bad looking space battle, though it threatened to. 

We finally got the rest of the crew to shine a bit. Owo was good, but wouldn't it make more sense for her backstory to be that she grew up in a high altitude place, rather than she learned to hold her breath underwater, to explain her stamina in a low oxygen environment?

The only part I truly liked was the resolution of the Su'Kal plot. That was the closest good Star Trek stuff we got in several episodes.

 

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Well, that was the best of the three finales and this was the best of the three seasons, but it was still somewhat nonsensical.

The cavernous turbolift void inside Discovery which is bigger than the entirety of Discovery is, very comfortably, one of the stupidest things I've ever seen in my entire life, though. This is Warp 10 newtfuck/engineering brewery/intersystem beaming/Spock's Brain levels of moronicity. I'm still reduced to giggles thinking about it.

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3 hours ago, Werthead said:

Well, that was the best of the three finales and this was the best of the three seasons, but it was still somewhat nonsensical.

The cavernous turbolift void inside Discovery which is bigger than the entirety of Discovery is, very comfortably, one of the stupidest things I've ever seen in my entire life, though. This is Warp 10 newtfuck/engineering brewery/intersystem beaming/Spock's Brain levels of moronicity. I'm still reduced to giggles thinking about it.

I thought I’d missed a bit where they’d all beamed back to the Federation base or something, it was fucking ridiculous. Why on Earth would a turbo lift room have so much empty space? There was an entire starship worth of empty space in there.

I really can’t agree this was the best, although I’ve never rewatched 1 or 2. At least the first two seasons knew what story they were trying to tell, even if they had some odd decisions along the way. This was a Frankenstein season, cobbled together out of random ideas that didn’t hang together at all. It had signs of good ideas for episodes, and some good episodes, but as a season of TV? It was flat out bad. And I kinda object to them choosing this of all seasons to close with a Roddenberry quote and then the TOS theme, like they’d done something profound. 

As a finale, it didn’t contain a lot of things I’ve hated about this season but that doesn’t make it good. It was half Saru and co just basically doing what they were already doing in the episode they first found the planet, half action stuff. Again, the Burn had the hallmarks of ONE good episode of Star Trek, but why someone decided that merited a great mystery and the overall arc of the season is baffling.

I can’t bring myself to ever say I won’t watch Star Trek cos ... it’s Star Trek you know? I feel like I’ve committed now, living through the drought years post Enterprise. But I’m just hate-watching now, I barely enjoy any aspects of it now.

Oh and 

Spoiler

“Well done Burnham, you fucked up so we demoted you, but then you got lucky, so HERE’S THE CAPTAIN’S CHAIR.” Right. Fuck off.

 

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Just now, Maltaran said:

What species was Adira in the holo? I didn’t recognise it

Was it the same species as Tilly’s mate from Season 2? I’m not sure. The holodeck that adds physical hearts, and manifests memories, but otherwise works exactly like a normal holodeck you mean?

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Yeah that enormous turbolift void was something alright. Good to know that the internals of discovery are 1% actual rooms, corridors, jeffries tubes and whatnot and 999% turbolift void. 

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, DaveSumm said:

I can’t bring myself to ever say I won’t watch Star Trek cos ...

 

To be clear, I'm not boycotting it or anything. I just feel the rewards of watching DSC are fewer than the frustrations. It's a pity because this season's start was promising plus there are many characters I like, from Adira to Stamets, Gray, Culber, Owo, Tilly (despite everything), Booker, Saru (who will probably be demoted to recrring), Owo (lots of potential), Reno... Alas, they are squandering their potential and they are lousy storytellers.

I have higher hopes for PIC, if they ever get to shoot another season.

Edited by Mindwalker

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5 hours ago, DaveSumm said:

I thought I’d missed a bit where they’d all beamed back to the Federation base or something, it was fucking ridiculous. Why on Earth would a turbo lift room have so much empty space? There was an entire starship worth of empty space in there.

I really can’t agree this was the best, although I’ve never rewatched 1 or 2. At least the first two seasons knew what story they were trying to tell, even if they had some odd decisions along the way. This was a Frankenstein season, cobbled together out of random ideas that didn’t hang together at all. It had signs of good ideas for episodes, and some good episodes, but as a season of TV? It was flat out bad. And I kinda object to them choosing this of all seasons to close with a Roddenberry quote and then the TOS theme, like they’d done something profound. 

As a finale, it didn’t contain a lot of things I’ve hated about this season but that doesn’t make it good. It was half Saru and co just basically doing what they were already doing in the episode they first found the planet, half action stuff. Again, the Burn had the hallmarks of ONE good episode of Star Trek, but why someone decided that merited a great mystery and the overall arc of the season is baffling.

I can’t bring myself to ever say I won’t watch Star Trek cos ... it’s Star Trek you know? I feel like I’ve committed now, living through the drought years post Enterprise. But I’m just hate-watching now, I barely enjoy any aspects of it now.

I think this season's arc was, by some considerable margin, the most cohesive and coherent they've ever done. The Federation has fallen on hard times, the Discovery crew have to adapt to it and help it get back on its feet and they do that, and we see the Federation's morals are intact (by rejecting Osyyra's peace overture when it means working with a mass murderer). It allows them to see things they've never done before, free of the straitjacket of canon in the 23rd Century, and the ridiculously advanced tech makes more sense. They even managed to avoid repeating the tropes of Andromeda, which they were on familiar ground to (albeit that Andromeda itself was a rejig of a Roddenberry Trek idea).

It was resolved poorly, but at least on paper the premise made far more sense than "red angel, time travel, SPOCK YO, something, AI, Section 31" and "Mirror Universe, Klingon War, er, mutiny or something," and the early parts of the season held great promise. Even the last couple weren't as awful as the last few episodes of Discovery Season 2 (remember Discovery and Enterprise deploying 40,000 automated war drones between them, somehow?).

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6 hours ago, Maltaran said:

What species was Adira in the holo? I didn’t recognise it

I do believe that was a Lesser spotted Wynotna.

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19 minutes ago, Werthead said:

remember Discovery and Enterprise deploying 40,000 automated war drones between them, somehow?).

Clearly they have the room! :laugh:

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7 hours ago, Werthead said:

I think this season's arc was, by some considerable margin, the most cohesive and coherent they've ever done. The Federation has fallen on hard times, the Discovery crew have to adapt to it and help it get back on its feet and they do that, and we see the Federation's morals are intact (by rejecting Osyyra's peace overture when it means working with a mass murderer). It allows them to see things they've never done before, free of the straitjacket of canon in the 23rd Century, and the ridiculously advanced tech makes more sense. They even managed to avoid repeating the tropes of Andromeda, which they were on familiar ground to (albeit that Andromeda itself was a rejig of a Roddenberry Trek idea).

For me, these are all reasons I was more excited for this season, not reasons it was actually good. Maybe my expectations were too high, combining these reasons with it being the third season where ST often finds it feet. And as I said, I’ve never rewatched the first two seasons. But if you work backwards from the finale, I can’t make sense of any of the build up to it. Ossyra finds the Federation? Well, why not build up more tension with more episodes focused on her, her motives, maybe a gradual sense of doom as we assume she’s trying to destroy them, to highlight the ‘twist’ that she then tries for peace? The robots are here to help? To the extent that it merits ending the first part on that ‘cliffhanger’? Well why didn’t we see more of them before, and why not actually explain what the fuck happened to the computer rather than a random off the cuff “oh, looks like the computer fused with the AI, huh ... anyway.” Michael...

Spoiler

becomes Captain?

Why her arc then, of constantly rebelling and getting demoted? Are we supposed to care that Michael struggled against some programmable matter? How hard is that? We have no reference point, so it falls flat. It feels like the writers couldn’t juggle an arc, and their attempt to have more classic feeling episodes, and so they stitched the arc together out of episode ideas.

7 hours ago, Werthead said:

It was resolved poorly, but at least on paper the premise made far more sense than "red angel, time travel, SPOCK YO, something, AI, Section 31" and "Mirror Universe, Klingon War, er, mutiny or something," and the early parts of the season held great promise. Even the last couple weren't as awful as the last few episodes of Discovery Season 2 (remember Discovery and Enterprise deploying 40,000 automated war drones between them, somehow?).

My memories of the the first two seasons are basically “that was problematic, but Lorca / Pike was cool”. Season 3 needed someone that cool, it needed a character to rally around and bind the story. It could’ve been Saru’s season to shine, but again, there’s no real indication of a plan for where he ends up, and his absence at the end of this was pretty bizarre. In fact, Saru really needed Burnham’s arc of chaffing against the Federation. That would’ve made more sense.

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Posted (edited)

I haven't even finished the season yet, I'm still trying to get over the fact that when Osyria angrily said "you have sealed your own fate and the fate of your federation!" she apparently meant that she would make peace with them. 

Edited by RumHam

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Ok I finally finished it. I thought Osyraa looked somewhat familiar, the actress is Margot Kidder's niece and has a resemblance. 

On 1/8/2021 at 11:05 AM, Werthead said:

this was the best of the three seasons

I have to disagree with you there. I think the writing has actually gotten a bit worse. I may have just liked season one better because the show was new and I had hope that it would be good. I also enjoyed theorizing about the mirror-lorca theory. Though the actual mirror universe parts were dumb. 

The second season got dumber as it went on but parts of it were entertaining and they at least sorta justified Spock being Michael's brother. I thought it was beyond ridiculous that all those ships couldn't destroy Discovery and the only thing they could think to do was send it to the future. But I was excited for season three to do something different not bound by being a prequel. Also to learn about the future of this fictional world. When the trailer came out and it seemed like they were doing an Andromeda-ish thing I was fine with that.

But they didn't do much of any of that. We learned the romulans and vulcans reunified and that the andorian's left the federation to form a criminal organization with the orions. Oh and the Trill are still there. I don't think they said anything about the klingons, the dominion, the cardassians, the borg or the breen. All we really learn about the future federation is that the burn happened and now they're hiding in a bubble waiting for Discovery to show up and fix everything. They just did nothing interesting with the setting and the idea of the crew having to adapt to a future where everything has changed. 

I also liked Micheal a lot more before this season. I don't remember all this "everybody loves you / you're the best / you inspire us" stuff in the first two. Maybe once or twice but at least four people tell her some version of that this season. Why? I don't remember her "dramatic whisper-talking" as much in the first two seasons either, but I could be wrong. 

I could list all the stuff that made no sense but we've covered most of it already in this thread. The one that bothers me most though is Burnham's mom. As I understand it she arrived in the future at the same time Burnham did. So in one year she decided to join the stupid romulan truth nuns instead of searching for her daughter or going with her when she showed up. The character's entire motivation in season two was to protect and reunite with her daughter. 

I think I might prefer Michael being captain to her being a rebellious first officer. Besides it seems like Jones is fed up with that makeup. Why else would they do that stupid holo thing and then suggest his character is taking some time off. 

Other than Saru mentioning his human heart beating fast was there any reason for that holo to have somehow actually transformed them into other species? 

Edit: oh I also hated Gray being able to exist outside Adria's mind. What the hell was that?

Edited by RumHam

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12 minutes ago, RumHam said:

thought Osyraa looked somewhat familiar, the actress is Margot Kidder's niece and has a resemblance. 

Wow! I kept trying to place her and I think this detail must be what I was responding to. I mean, I knew her name, but didn't make the connection to Margot Kidder.

As to this season of the show... I don't know, it improved some things a little bit (Tilly became a lot less annoying, though in part because I guess they decided MORE BURNHAM was the ticket, and because now they have Adira to be the new Wesley), and the VFX, however overused they may be at times, are still really impressive (I share the mockery of the turbolift sequenc)... but it's still a deeply incoherent show. They're kind of throwing everything at the wall and hoping something sticks.

The way it ended felt like they were prepared to not get a 4th season, or is that just me?

 

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Yeah, incoherent is the right word. At the end of the day, I'm sad that this is what Trek has come down to. Discovery reminds me of some kind of cross between Marvel and CW stuff like Vampire Diaries or 100. I mean, that's cool, not trying to diss those shows, once upon a time I even enjoyed the early seasons of Vampire Diaries for what they were. But after true sci-fi landmarks like The Original Series, The Next Generation, and Deep Space Nine that have had lasting real-world relevance, we now have... this... as Star Trek. It is just sad.

Edited by Mr Fixit

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Yeah, incoherent is the right word. At the end of the day, I'm sad that this is what Trek has come down to. Discovery reminds me of some kind of cross between Marvel and CW stuff like Vampire Diaries or 100. I mean, that's cool, not trying to diss those shows, once upon a time I even enjoyed the early seasons of Vampire Diaries for what they were. But after true sci-fi landmarks like The Original Series, The Next Generation, and Deep Space Nine that have had lasting real-world relevance, we now have... this... as Star Trek. It is just sad.

I think there's a combination of factors. They do have some pretty good writers, but they're all under the thumb of Kurtzman, who is absolutely useless as both a writer and producer. So you have a reasonable stream of good ideas, which then get degraded or not thought through properly. Kurtzman I think should either downgrade himself so he's working on just one of the shows as a jobbing writer or he should back the hell off and act as a general overseer with other writer-showrunners below him with more autonomy, like Berman did.

Berman was an absolutely shit writer and, as we've found out since, a misogynistic scumbag who basically stood to one side and let Maurice Hurley fire Gates McFadden for no reason other than he didn't like her (nearly sparking a cast rebellion in the process), bullied Terry Farrell into quitting and decided to fire Jennifer Lien solely so they could replace her with an actress who was hotter. But he did know when he had Michael Piller, Ira Steven Behr and Jeri Taylor as his showrunners that he could back the fuck off and not interfere with the writing because they knew their stuff (and he did, probably correctly, judge that Brannon Braga wasn't good enough to be left unsupervised and intervened to "help out", although that was a mistake). One of the problems with Enterprise is that Berman and Braga were smart enough to back off and let Manny Coto do his thing, but they weren't smart enough to let it go entirely, and kept butting in and of course co-wrote that awful finale.

So if Kurtzman could be more like mid-period Berman, just without the arsehole tendencies, that'd be a reasonable development. Otherwise CBS should consider the merits of just firing his arse and replacing him with someone else: Coto is younger than I thought he was, he's only in his fifties and still working. Ron Moore is probably too busy with Outlander and For All Mankind (which also has a bunch of other DS9 and BSG writers), but ex-TNGer Naren Shankar should be free after next year when The Expanse wraps. 

The one thing Nu-Trek has done really well is Lower Decks, which I was in no way expecting to be as good as it is. Season 2 is something I'm really looking forwards to.

Edited by Werthead

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3 hours ago, RumHam said:

I thought it was beyond ridiculous that all those ships couldn't destroy Discovery and the only thing they could think to do was send it to the future.

That was nothing compared to this season, when the entire Starfleet of a thousand years in the future spends a solid five minutes attacking Discovery while it's trapped inside the shield and has nowhere to run, after it was already damaged by the nebula, and the bridge crew have free rein over everything below deck five to carry out sabotage, and it gets away without a scratch.

3 hours ago, RumHam said:

Edit: oh I also hated Gray being able to exist outside Adria's mind. What the hell was that?

Not the stupidest thing the holodeck did, but when it's only the holodeck that's giving him independent physical existence, just maybe he isn't the best choice to be walking into a hole in the program where the holodeck is breaking down???

And this is on top of the turbolift dimension and Osyraa's cunning plan to hijack the Discovery and hold its crew hostage in order to... demonstrate that they'd make trustworthy allies? There's a lot that Discovery is doing very well, but the shear amount of absolute WTFery mixed in with it is baffling.

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I've made most of my displeasures known already, but I wanted to pile on. My biggest problem with the show is the poor writing and this is most apparent in the inconsistent characterization. There is no rhyme or reason to the characters, They do whatever needs doing according to the plot gods, so they make no sense as actual characters. I would hold this show up as a non-example of characterization in my teaching. Too often, I find myself unable to answer "Why would character x do y" and that's a problem. Not every character can or should do everything and that is okay.

I would love for Lower Decks to get on Netflix here. I love Trek but I think I have to give up on DMB. It doesn't work for me.

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I feel bad for arguing to give them the benefit of the doubt with some of the larger issues people had early in the season. I'm really disappointed with the number of places it could have gone well but instead picked the worst route.

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3 hours ago, felice said:

And this is on top of the turbolift dimension and Osyraa's cunning plan to hijack the Discovery and hold its crew hostage in order to... demonstrate that they'd make trustworthy allies? There's a lot that Discovery is doing very well, but the shear amount of absolute WTFery mixed in with it is baffling.

Osyraa wanting an alliance is the worst plot twist I can remember since the end of season one of The Killing (the only season I watched.) It exists purely to be a shocking twist and doesn't jive with what came before at all. Especially with her threat after Dentmer shot at her ships. 

And to make it worse they have the lie detector hologram there to remove any nuance or tension from the negotiations. 

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