Month: June 2010

  • Trekathon 272: If Wishes Were Horses (DS9)

    A good teaser should make you eager to see the rest of the episode. If, even with my project to watch everything, I very nearly turned the episode off after the teaser then clearly things have not gone well. The only thing that was keeping me watching by the time Odo says “please refrain from […]

  • Trekathon 271: Suspicions (TNG)

    I have some helpful advice for any writers considering using narration of any type for TV or movies: don’t. It has never, ever worked. It certainly doesn’t work here. I have similar remarks for people who want to use framing scenes and tell their story almost entirely in flashback. There isn’t a lot to like […]

  • Trekathon 270: Progress (DS9)

    So far Deep Space 9 is painting a puzzling picture of Bajoran society. So far we’ve seen terrorists, farmers and priests. Not exactly the kind of rounded picture you’d expect from a society being considered for admission into the Federation. Anyway, this week we have the ex-terrorist (Kira) facing off against the stubborn farmer who […]

  • Trekathon 269: Frame of Mind (TNG)

    The ‘nothing is real’ plot is very hard to pull off in TV. In a movie we don’t know the background, but here the viewer knows for certain what the ‘reality’ for Riker should look like. That makes it harder to write the story. But this episode takes those constraints, and actually uses them to […]

  • Trekathon 268: The Storyteller (DS9)

    Another important marker in the development of the series, the start of the friendship between O’Brien and Bashir. It’s been said before by others, but what the writers (and Siddig el Fadil) did with the Bashir character here is very brave. They started out with a deeply unlikeable, arrogant person, and then over the course […]

  • Trekathon 267: The Chase (TNG)

    It is tempting to describe this episode as a one-hour long excuse for why the aliens in Star Trek are just ‘humans with bumpy noses and foreheads’. Very tempting… It’s a fun chase sequence, in the tradition of a long range of movies. But once again the emotional content goes missing – Picard’s father figure […]

  • Trekathon 266: Battle Lines (DS9)

    Deep Space 9 focuses on the gamma quadrant for the first time. It’s a bit of the setting that so far has only gotten short shrift. Even here it’s just an excuse to put people in a more remote location. Each of the main characters has been getting a bit of a chance for character […]

  • Trekathon 265: Vortex (DS9)

    This is an interesting episode – in retrospect it’s really the first real step into the major plot arc of the series, the Dominion. But I suspect that wasn’t really intended at the time. Of course, it’s never really clear if Odo’s prisoner is just lying about everything, or if there is a grain of […]

  • Trekathon 264: Lessons (TNG)

    Jean-Luc and Nella, sitting in a Jeffries Tube, K-I-S-S-I-N-G. It’s an unusually quiet, character centred story – unusual but welcome. It’s a nice change of pace, and a good opportunity to provide more depth to Picard’s character. It’s also nice to have a sequel to *The Inner Light*, an excellent episode that should have some […]

  • Trekathon 263: Starship Mine (TNG)

    OK, I’m just going to point out the obvious: this is *Die Hard* on a starship. The ever-reliable TV Tropes [records over 20 TV shows that have gone the same way]( Everything is competently done, there are some nice individual bits, and it’s fun watching Picard in his commando mode. But there’s no heart in […]