Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Wed Dec 22, 2010 3:16 am

The real shame is that he's clearly a good actor. I'll give that to Trek, it is well acted for the most part. Especially with the more complex characters such as Bashir, Garak and Odo.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Wed Dec 22, 2010 3:20 am

Indeed. And particularly in the case of the latter two of the actors you mention it should be remembered that they're very experienced old pros indeed.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Zoltar on Wed Dec 22, 2010 9:44 am

Rich Flair wrote:They should have done a spin-off starring the greatest DS9 character - old one eye, General Martok.
Well, I don't know if I'd personally rate him as the greatest character in DS9 - there's a few I'd consider for that - but he's easily my favorite of the Klingons.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Thu Dec 23, 2010 3:53 am

Series 6 has brought something new: good Quark episodes.

The Magnificent Ferengi been the funniest episode so far. It's bonkers, a load of Ferengi running around Empok Nor, Nog being all military. Brunt not being 2D. Rom's finding out about Zek and Moogie is hilarious. And maddest of all, Iggy Pop as a Vorta, or Iggy Pop playing Iggy Pop dressed as a Vorta as it would be more accurate to say. A nice bit of comedy all round.

Who Mourns for Morn is another beauty. Again it's a comedy episode with some fantastic moments. Gold is worthless casing for valuable latinum Very Happy
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Thu Dec 23, 2010 4:00 am

Quark was a favourite character of mine. His relationship with Odo was pure gold.

Although having said that, I do think the show drank from the Ferengi comedy well once or even twice too often.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Thu Dec 23, 2010 4:04 am

The Quark/Odo relationship is one of the best parts of the show. Quark certainly hasn't had his fair share, it seems that they couldn't find anything good for him to do. The majority of the time we seem to just have an 'Armin Shimerman gets paid this week' scenes shoehorned into an episode.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Thu Dec 23, 2010 4:15 am

Yep, very much so. And of course speaking of the Ferengi, it should be noted that they were another of the latter day Trek alien races that were h made less threatening and much more viewer friendly between their original appearance and the time DS9 rolled around.

Berman certainly did enjoy emasculating the potency of the universes bad guys. Ultimately, even the Borg weren't immune.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Rich Flair on Thu Dec 23, 2010 6:38 am

But the Ferengi were never threatening, even when they were supposed to be threatening. So there wasn't anything to emasculate - turning them into comedy characters was probably the best way of salvaging them.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Thu Dec 23, 2010 6:51 am

You know, on reflection that's a bloody good point.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Nick Barlow on Thu Dec 23, 2010 6:54 am

The point of the Ferengi was that they were Roddenberry's idea of what the main enemy for the Federation should be - they were meant to be avaricious, self-centred and capitalistic as opposed to the post-scarcity utopia that the Federation represented.

That they completely failed to be at all threatening when they first appeared in TNG is one of the things that led to Roddenberry's influence waning and the creation of the Borg as an adversary that might instead.

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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Patrick on Thu Dec 23, 2010 7:32 am

Nick Barlow wrote:That they completely failed to be at all threatening when they first appeared in TNG is one of the things that led to Roddenberry's influence waning and the creation of the Borg as an adversary that might instead.

They were not only not threatening when they first appeared on TNG, they were comical and easy to mock. I was in college when the first season of TNG aired, and I used to work with a guy who could do a great impression of a Ferengi- "I put that thought into his head!" I mean, when the tag line phrase for new nemesis is something that gets used for laughs, it's not a good sign that you've created a convincingly threatening villain.

For me, the real treat on DS9 were episodes where Garak got lots to do. I really enjoyed Andrew Robinson's performances. Garak the Tailor was one of those rare characters who you could never be sure you truly understood his motivations, and therefore, on what side of any particular issue he'd come down on. I think the first time I stood up and took notice of him was when he commented to Dr. Bashir, after Bashir had told him of the story of the boy who cried wolf, that the obvious moral of the story was not to tell the same lie three times.

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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Thu Dec 23, 2010 7:35 am

Thanks for that, Nick. My memory of the behind the scenes machinations of Trek is obviously very dusty. Hmmmm...perhaps I should pull some of my old reference books and bring myself back up to speed.

Eitherway, a most valuable contribution to the debate.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Rich Flair on Thu Dec 23, 2010 8:30 am

Yes, there was a lot of weird decisions during the first two years of TNG, because Roddenberry, in his mind, had created a new version of what the original Star Trek was about and wanted TNG to reflect that.

Unfortunately, it had little to do with what the original Trek really was about, and so Starfleet and the Federation being a non-monied utopia, without greed and zips, where everybody was a bit boring and where the third most important person on the bridge was a bleedin' counsellor!
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Thu Dec 23, 2010 8:55 am

And the Federation's love of the colour beige, as an integral part of the interior design of their Starships.

Not to mention Wesley Crusher...Damn! I really, really meant not to mention him.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Rich Flair on Thu Dec 23, 2010 9:02 am

Sid Seadevil wrote:And the Federation's love of the colour beige, as an integral part of the interior design of their Starships.

Not to mention Wesley Crusher...Damn! I really, really meant not to mention him.

Of course - Wesley Crusher, the mary-sue of Gene Wesley Roddenberry.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Thu Dec 23, 2010 9:15 am

Rich Flair wrote:Of course - Wesley Crusher, the mary-sue of Gene Wesley Roddenberry.
Indeed.

Then of course there's the Captain having to consult a focus group before making a decision on anything more important than whether or not to have a cup of Earl Grey.

In the time that took, Kirk would have solved the problem, ripped his shirt in a fight and still had time left over to pull a comely alien bird and have a joke at Spock's expense.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Zoltar on Thu Dec 23, 2010 12:11 pm

Johnstone McGuckian wrote:Who Mourns for Morn is another beauty. Again it's a comedy episode with some fantastic moments. Gold is worthless casing for valuable latinum Very Happy
Morn was a great character, I enjoyed the gimmick of his not speaking but apparently being a talkative guy. The folks at DS9 liked a good running gag. Like self-sealing stem bolts, whatever the hell those were. Very Happy

Sid Seadevil wrote:Quark was a favourite character of mine. His relationship with Odo was pure gold.
Gold-pressed Latinum, surely.

Sid Seadevil wrote:Although having said that, I do think the show drank from the Ferengi comedy well once or even twice too often.
Sid Seadevil wrote:Ultimately, even the Borg weren't immune.
The Borg's decline was a case of going to the well too often also. They needed to be used more sparingly, in my opinion, to retain their menace. They were defeated a few times too often for my liking.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Thu Dec 23, 2010 12:26 pm

Zoltar wrote:Morn was a great character, I enjoyed the gimmick of his not speaking but apparently being a talkative guy. The folks at DS9 liked a good running gag. Like self-sealing stem bolts, whatever the hell those were. Very Happy
Yep, I enjoyed the way they used Morn as well.

Zoltar wrote:Gold-pressed Latinum, surely.
Quite.

Zoltar wrote:The Borg's decline was a case of going to the well too often also. They needed to be used more sparingly, in my opinion, to retain their menace. They were defeated a few times too often for my liking.
Absolutely. And even worse they introduced sympathetic Borg to boot. A huge, huge misstep.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Thu Dec 23, 2010 12:45 pm

The sympathetic Borg came in too soon, too. Not the best follow up to TBOBW.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Thu Dec 23, 2010 1:02 pm

Yep. It's almost as if they were either afraid or simply didn't know how best to handle their villains.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Zoltar on Thu Dec 23, 2010 1:44 pm

Sid Seadevil wrote:Yep. It's almost as if they were either afraid or simply didn't know how best to handle their villains.
I think there was sometimes a problem for them with how to properly portray the villains as villains and yet also show that they weren't all "evil" characters. It was something they did well with the Romulans in Balance of Terror, as showing the good traits of the Romulan Commander didn't diminish his power as an adversary at all. But they didn't always recreate that success elsewhere.

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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Thu Dec 23, 2010 1:49 pm

[/i]Balance of Terror[/i] is a fine example of it done well. In fact, it actually think that the original series often actually succeeded at this better than the series which followed it.


Last edited by Sid Seadevil on Thu Dec 23, 2010 2:40 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Patrick on Thu Dec 23, 2010 2:18 pm

Zoltar wrote:
Sid Seadevil wrote:Yep. It's almost as if they were either afraid or simply didn't know how best to handle their villains.
I think there was sometimes a problem for them with how to properly portray the villains as villains and yet also show that they weren't all "evil" characters. It was something they did well with the Romulans in Balance of Terror, as showing the good traits of the Romulan Commander didn't diminish his power as an adversary at all. But they didn't always recreate that success elsewhere.

Sid Seadevil wrote:[b]Balance of Terror[/i] is a fine example of it done well. In fact, it actually think that the original series often actually succeeded at this better than the series which followed it.

The main problem with the Borg, unlike- to use Zoltar's example- the Romulans, is that the Borg are enemy that only functions en masse. The reason "I, Borg" failed was that they tried to show an individual Borg and make you feel compasionately toward him/her/it. There are no individual Borg.

Say what you want about the Cybermen (the template upon which the Borg were conceived), but Doctor Who has never portrayed an individual Cyberman as someone you could get to know and be chums with.

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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Thu Dec 23, 2010 2:47 pm

Patrick wrote:The main problem with the Borg, unlike- to use Zoltar's example- the Romulans, is that the Borg are enemy that only functions en masse. The reason "I, Borg" failed was that they tried to show an individual Borg and make you feel compasionately toward him/her/it. There are no individual Borg.

Say what you want about the Cybermen (the template upon which the Borg were conceived), but Doctor Who has never portrayed an individual Cyberman as someone you could get to know and be chums with.
That's an excellent point. On reflection, I think part of thwe problem directly following The Best of Both Worlds was that they realised that they had created the Borg to powerful. So instead of coming up with evermore ingenious ways for the Federation Mob to outwit them, they took the easy option of slowly depowering them instead.

But they did it in the laziest, least imaginative way possible.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Zoltar on Thu Dec 23, 2010 3:18 pm

Patrick wrote:The main problem with the Borg, unlike- to use Zoltar's example- the Romulans, is that the Borg are enemy that only functions en masse. The reason "I, Borg" failed was that they tried to show an individual Borg and make you feel compasionately toward him/her/it. There are no individual Borg.

Say what you want about the Cybermen (the template upon which the Borg were conceived), but Doctor Who has never portrayed an individual Cyberman as someone you could get to know and be chums with.
That's true, the CyberAdmin has yet to appear on DW. And there's frankly no excuse for it. Wink

But yes, the Borg are SF zombies, meant to be a persistent attacking force that you can't reason with which intends to consume you. If "Hugh" was bad for the Borg, I think Seven was worse. She was not only meant to be sympathetic, but she literally used Borg tech for good.

Sid Seadevil wrote:That's an excellent point. On reflection, I think part of thwe problem directly following The Best of Both Worlds was that they realised that they had created the Borg to powerful. So instead of coming up with evermore ingenious ways for the Federation Mob to outwit them, they took the easy option of slowly depowering them instead.

But they did it in the laziest, least imaginative way possible.
Happens a lot with those all-powerful enemies that prove popular. Case in point from DC comics, for example, Darkseid's Omega Effect or Doomsday. Red Hulk was a recent example at Marvel, though they've made an effort to explain his depowering.
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