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Old 2015-10-21, 06:53 PM   #42
Warcry
Likes Beast Wars toys. A lot.
 
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Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
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Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
I always thought it was a shame that for the last season the original "Prophets speak through the appearance of suspiciously appropriate people" idea was dropped for "The Prophets speak through the form of Sisko's played by a bad actress mother".
Didn't notice that at the time, but you're right. It made the Prophet segments way less mind-trippy.

I guess the Prophets thought their words would seem more important if they came from someone Sisko saw as an authority figure/loved one? If so that means they understand linear thinking way more than they let on...

Quote:
Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
Thankfully the show never flat out said it, but the general fan assumption used to be that the Prophets were the future evolved form of the Bajorans ("We are of Bajor").
I've never heard of that before. It's a silly theory and I'm glad the show steered clear of it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
In slight mitigation, according to The Companion they did consult whatever the representative body of Native American culture is in America (I forget the exact name, King of the Indians? Sadie?) and were assured "Indian" was OK to use, but were asked to change to script so it wasn't a specific tribe featured in the episode.
I don't think the word was any more polite twenty years ago than it is now, really (I'd put it on par with "coloured", insofar is it comes across as old-timey and dismissive but not explicitly racist). But then I'm looking at it from a Canadian perspective and I really have no idea if things are different in the US.

I suppose I can understand the latter, if they spoke to a lobby group that represents multiple tribes, but I think it makes it really hard for anyone who's actually met any Aboriginal folk to take the message at all seriously. I mean there's only about 200,000 Aboriginals in Manitoba and even that relatively small number is divided into at least five different groups with wildly different cultures and histories. Across the whole continent you'd be talking about dozens of different groups, if not hundreds. It's hard to get across the "we treated these folks poorly" message when you're simultaneously playing the "all them brown folk are the same" card.

Quote:
Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
Yeah, O'Brien from season 3 onwards is a slightly younger replacement from a defunct timeline who watched the original die.
Yeah, at first I thought of the clone that some aliens made of him and sent back as an assassin.

Quote:
Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
I picked up the costumes of Star Trek hardback last week, and there's a publicity picture of Saavik in there I'd not seen before where she's managing to work the Mountie uniform very well.
Yeah, it's easy to forget how much of a looker Kirstie Alley was back in those days. She was also quite a good actress...I don't think the character or the film series ever truly recovered from replacing her.

Quote:
Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
It actually got a bit silly how many species the Enterprise and DS9 crews run into (I don't know if Voyager and Enterprise carried it on, the last example I can think of is The Adversary) the Federation had been at war with in recent memory--sometimes even the life of the series--but hadn't been mentioned before. The Cardassians were the only ones to stick.
Are there really that many? The Cardassians, Tzenkethi and Talarians are the only ones that come to mind off-hand. Or did they have a war with the Sheliac too before signing the insanely complex and technical treaty with them?

And also, there are a lot of different degrees of "war". Not every one of the Federation's conflicts needs to be the Dominion War, just like not every one of our wars are WWII.
Both of our countries are involved in a few right now in places like Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, but the conflicts are so low-intensity that I'm sure a lot of people are totally unaware of them. I'm sure it's even easier to miss stuff like that when your country covers hundreds of star systems rather than a small chunk of land on a single planet. And, hell, the huge scale of the thing only makes it more likely that the Federation would get embroiled in a lot of (to them) small and insignificant conflicts out on the fringes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
It would actually make sense for Data to have gone through the academy quickly considering his intelligence, speed and the fact he can study 24 hours a day (and surely they must have courses of different duration for more intelligent species like Vulcans? Or very short lived ones like Kes who would be almost dead by the time she graduated?), though I suppose with the whole "Desire to be human" thing he'd have probably insisted on the long road.
Actually, I'd argue that the Academy is just as much about teaching the cadets to operate in Starfleet's quasi-military culture as it is about book-learning. And while Data could absorb information super-quick, I think he would have needed to spend those four years learning about the social aspects of the job rather than the technical ones.

Re: short-lived species, I suspect Starfleet would simply have pointed them towards the noncom training programs (which as per Simon Tarses, let you get out into space a lot sooner at the cost of not having the amount of education that an officer needs).

Quote:
Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
Crusher of course manages to get her oar in though. "I have to get ready for all the casualties you're about to send me", I bet he was already thinking of getting Pulaski back.
I would have cheered even harder for him if he'd done that. Pulaski was so much more fun than Crusher ever was. Though it also seems like she got as much to do in one season as Crusher did across six...

Quote:
Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
Yeah, and to be fair to Geordi, he at least handles his grievance properly (complaining to Riker as the guy who has to deal with personnel issues), he doesn't actually start almost crying in front of the captain. How can Riker not have a handle on the idea of "Plausible deniability" missions?
Obviously he's bought into Picard's transparently silly "Starfleet isn't a military" propaganda and developed a strong aversion to doing anything to actually defend the Federation. The Enterprise is their toy to use for explorationy fun, dammit!

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Originally Posted by Denyer View Post
I got through a few books of Vanguard and gave up, TBH... even though I was reading it over an extended period, it seemed to be repeating itself quite a lot.
The first books did get a bit repetitive if you don't like the general idea of the Shedai or the political nature of the story, but after that it shot off in totally unexpected directions and really kept my attention. I liked it because it was willing to actually pay off on the plotlines that Trek TV could only tease (like actually drumming a lead character out of Starfleet when he commits a court-martial offense). Also it was nice to see some TOS-era fiction that isn't dedicated to showing just how awesome Kirk and co. is...

Seekers is actually more my speed, though -- it follows the crews of a couple of the ships from Vanguard, but it's more of a straight-ahead exploration story without the geopolitics or eldritch horrors.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Denyer View Post
Of the new stuff, I thoroughly enjoyed DTI, don't mind a bit of Titan, quite enjoyed the Destiny arc putting a lid on a series of increasingly fanfic-ish Borg stories (such as Before Dishonor, which was PAD as well) and the Typhon Pact / DS9 / Voyager stuff hasn't thrown up anything of particular interest from what I've read and can remember. I like that there's some advancement, but would rather have had more of the Nan Bacco era politics than another fill-in entry around Andor going nuts or slipstream technology.
Titan lost me really early on, because the Martin/Mangels duo have all the subtlety of a bag of hammers and their idea of "show how the Federation's diversity makes it stronger" was to have characters get into out-of-character monologues about it constantly.

I avoided most of the Borg masturbation, though I did read Destiny and wasn't super impressed (I agree with you that it was good to put an end to all that). Typhon Pact, etc, didn't do too much to recapture me either, because so many of the characters have drifted off in nonsensical directions (Sisko comes back, then abandons his family and Bajor! Ro is captain of DS9! Kira is a Vedek!) and so many parts of the on-screen stories were undone (Data isn't dead anymore! Neither is Trip! Oh, and the last episode of Enterprise never happened!) to please a vocal minority of fans. It's like once Pocket had free reign to do whatever they wanted in the old universe, they fell into a comics-industry trap of trying to make every book an even with huge, shocking swerves instead of just telling solid stories.

I did love the initial DS9 relaunch books, but to be honest the line had run out of steam a while before the decision to take everything post-Destiny finally put it out of its' misery. The run from Avatar to Unity was amazing though, and tied up all of the nagging loose ends that the series left behind. I also loved the Andorian culture that the series built up, though it's very difficult to reconcile with the one that we saw on Enterprise and later books often struggle to blend the two. The new characters were great too -- Shar and Vaughn actually managed to become a couple of my favourite Trek characters ever, not an easy thing to do when they've never appeared on-screen in anything.

I'm not a Voyager fan, but I thought the first couple post-Destiny Voyager books were fantastic and I really liked seeing the crew have to deal with the fallout of losing their captain to the Borg. I'm not at all a fan of them bringing her back from the dead, though, and pretty much lost interest after that.

Articles of the Federation was one of my favourite sci-fi books ever, Trek or not, and it's a real shame that we're never going to get another Bacco-centered political thriller again.
 
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