Category: TV reviews

Star Trek Discovery S1 ep7: Magic to Make the Sanest Man Go Mad

Star Trek Discovery
S1 ep7: Magic to Make the Sanest Man Go Mad
From IMDB:
As the U.S.S. Discovery crew attempts to let loose at a party, an unwelcome visitor comes aboard bringing about a problematic and twisted sequence of events.

MV5BNzE0Y2I5YjctOGJmZC00MjhjLTk3ODEtMThlZjA4ZGVkN2JmXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNjc5Mjg0NjU@._V1_

My favourite episode so far; it takes an old school Trek idea and makes it feel fresh and new.

The Logical

This is the first episode where the ‘previously on…’ and the title sequence run one after the other. Immediately I feel like something different is going to happen this episode. This then leads naturally into Michael’s ‘ship’s log’. It does feel a little bit like a homage to the recent films, but it still is a nice touch.

We get a party. A proper party. Not one of the stuffy things of Trek of old. There’s alcohol, there’s loud music and there is fraternisation. We get a drunk Tilly, and its genius.

Michael and Ash are being established as a romantic couple. It’s not subtle, it’s beautifully organic and totally fun to watch. Especially as the episode progresses and Michael is able to explore her emotions.

The plot develops around a returning fan favourite; using the good old trojan horse trick to get on board. However, it’s not the only old trick in the book that the episode uses. Henry Mudd, seeking his revenge uses a temporal loop to gain information about Discovery. It’s delightful and fun. And you know what makes it different from other shows that use this plot device? We don’t follow the character that is exempt from the loop. It’s our resident Stamets! I did tell you I loved him, right? When asked about the second run through, Stamets has to correct them:

“Multiple times actually, and I’ve yet to get a win for the home team.”

If you loved Stamets before, you’ll be bursting with love after seeing be all positive and joyful. Even more so when you see how he responds to Michael. The best part was watching him teach her how to dance.

The time loops develop to a musical crescendo and by the episode’s time runs out, everything is resolved and Mudd is sent off with a beautiful wave from Stamets.

The Illogical

Call me cynical, but was the Gormagander the alien of the week to coincide with the release of series 2 of Stranger Things?

 

Final thoughts
No Klingons and, surprise surprise I loved every minute of this episode. I’ll let you into a secret; I didn’t have any illogical points and I think the timing of the episode was genius.

The Flash S4 Ep1 The Flash Reborn

The Flash S4 Ep1 The Flash Reborn

Description: Barry is brought out of the Speed Force to help fight an armored villain, but he isn’t the same person.

MV5BODU0MWFjNDYtODA2Ni00YzQzLWFkZDEtZmQ2ODNkMjkzMTQzXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNjc5Mjg0NjU@._V1_


MIA

MV5BMjRlMTVkM2ItNmIwYi00NmE5LTlkZjYtMzFjYzBmNGM0NjQ5XkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNjEwNTM2Mzc@._V1_SY1000_CR0,0,666,1000_AL_

H.R. Okay, so we know he sacrificed himself last series, but I want to take a moment to acknowledge his loss. I think H.R was the best incarnation of the multiverse character. While I would be open to another search and recruitment, I’m not sure I’m ready for one.

By extension, I was very disappointed to not welcome the return of Anne Dudek’s Tracey. I’m aware of her role as the romantic interest of H.R, but she worked well with the whole group and I’m just a little sad that they didn’t explore this.

 

 

MV5BZTAwMDg3MDUtMTcwMi00NjBhLTg1ZmItNzNmZDRlNzY2ZWIzXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNjc5Mjg0NjU@._V1_

MV5BMTg2NjIwMTM3NF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwODE2ODkyMDI@._V1_

 

 

Tom Felton’s Julian is now back in London, having returned post finale. Again, this is something I feel was a massive shame and I’m hoping it’s more to do with Felton’s schedule than anything else. I loved his friction with Cisco and the fact that Caitlin had moved on and found love again. He added so much to the dynamic of the show.

 

 

 

 

MV5BYjhjMTRkZDAtZDMyZS00MDU3LTgzMzYtMWM1YjQ3MTI2OGVlXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNzQ0MDUyMzg@._V1_

The Flash himself remained missing for most of the episode; both physically and mentally. Up until the last few scenes there is nothing recognisable in the returning Barry Allen. It’s wonderful to see a change in the acting range of Grant Gustin, however it was nice to get Barry back before the credits rolled.

 

V.M.H (very much here)

Cisco and Caitlin were on form this episode. Cisco has always been a firm favourite of mine. They need to give him a relationship A.S.A.P (I volunteer as tribute, of course).
They had some brilliant banter as Cisco recalled her for duty and I duly noted the Hitchhiker’s reference.

MV5BMmE1ZjExYzItOTZkMC00ODc2LTkxNTAtNTg3YTU3MzBlMDVjXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNjc5Mjg0NjU@._V1_

Designated Survivor S2 Ep3: Outbreak

Designated Survivor S2 Ep3: Outbreak

download (5)
Description:
The activities at the White House this day include Kendra’s first major assignment of mediation between affected stakeholders of what to do about a statue of a Confederate war general in Tennessee, he who is now deemed a racist – keeping the statue at its current prominent location which has an unexpected supporter – and the unveiling of a creature biologically named after Tom. Lyor finds the choice of creature offensive to his boss while Seth has to figure out a way to spin it positively to the public. These issues take a back seat when a public health crisis occurs, with a deadly avian flu outbreak in South Carroll Parish, Louisiana. First reports are that there is a forty percent fatality rate of those infected. Dr. Tammy Bruner with the CDC believes the outbreak will spread throughout the country in the matter of days if not contained despite the relatively isolated nature of South Carroll Parish. Dr. Bruner heads to the front line to deal with the outbreak. Although she reports back that there are no current pharmaceuticals to prevent the flu and that the development of a vaccine would take months, she believes there is an experimental drug developed for a different purpose by a pharmaceutical company owned by Carlton Mackie that may control the flu. Although Mackie is somewhat cooperative in his initial meeting with Tom, Tom learns that Mackie has different priorities, such as making money and ensuring the long term viability of his company, which, if he gets his way, would result in unnecessary immediate deaths in South Carroll Parish, a relatively poor and predominantly black community. The other goings-on in the White House this day could affect what happens between Tom and Mackie. Meanwhile, Chuck is trying to decrypt the file Lloyd sent to the cloud before the drone strike, while Hannah and Damian continue to follow up on the incident at the First Lady’s mother’s house. They know that Lloyd’s actions there were not by accident, he leaving a trail of bread crumbs to what he wants them to discover whatever it is.

 

I identified four main threads in this episode:

  1. Influenza outbreak
  2. Memorial statue of a political racist
  3. Hannah and the mother-in-law’s house/ Lloyd’s treasure hunt
  4. The turkey… sorry, frog

 

ONE
It was an interesting story thread, one that would later interweave with the second thread; one supporting the other. It was an interesting exploration of capitalism and I’m still not quite sure which side of the fence I sit on.

While I understand it was a time of crisis and that the pharmaceutical company should have an obligation to help. I can’t help but empathise with his detached outlook on the bigger picture. Yes, Tom’s declaration that he needs to consider the greater good is a solid argument, however I disagree that the town is the greater good when you consider the company’s thinking.

Using a drug not yet approved by the FDA would put the company at risk for the future, reverse engineering by other companies, certain bankruptcy and guaranteed blocks by the FDA would all lead to other antidotes and cures remaining undeveloped.

I felt uncomfortable with Tom’s tactic of publicising the company head a racist due to his inaction. Yes, it gets him what he wants, but I’m teaching my students about using a race card appropriately. Positive discrimination is not always a good thing; and I do believe that the company in questioned would have made the same decision regardless of the ethnicity of the town’s occupants.

download (4)

TWO
This was quite incredible and an example of not only positive discrimination, but white privilege as well. There is a mediation meeting being held about the movement of a monument of a Confederate war veteran. Many deem it a sign of long past racism within Tennessee and would prefer it to be moved from its prominent location.
However, Rev. Tramer Dale, played by the delightful Ron Canada objects to the monument’s move; to the disgust of many stakeholders in the room. Now, this is a topical discussion for me and I found it interesting reflection upon my opinion one the episode finished, because if someone had presented this to me without the Reverend’s input, I probably would have agreed to the move.

You see, being a white woman from Liverpool I have some understanding about the problems these people faced. Many streets in my home city are dedicated to those who took primary roles in the slave trade and prospered greatly as a result.

Being a contentious issue, there is often debate and discussion about the renaming of these roads.

I am ashamed of our history. I am ashamed at our heritage and I wanted them removed. I argued, at length, with my father about this exact thing. However, I now have to rescind. Mainly because Reverend is right; by doing so, you are white washing history. By keeping it there as a testament of the past, it ensures you don’t forget. Of course, I’m not going to tell my dad that.

American history is a little bit more convoluted, however and I can see why Tom is insisting on a compromise from Reverend Tramer and they discuss the virtue of absolutism; something I would be interesting in discussing with students in school.

My favourite moment comes from Reverend Tramer and Mike. When asked if he can lead a long time role model of his out of the White House, Tramer responds

“no, but you can walk with me.”

There is something affirming about being seen as an equal to people you regard highly. Such a touching moment which has its parralell conversation towards the end when Tom declares to Mike:

“It’s 2017, we should be talking about everything and anything but this.”

The strange thing, it’s true. In the last few months as a teacher and as a UK citizen I’ve been overwhelmed with the number of racist incidents that are happening on a daily basis. I don’t see colour, I don’t understand why people are treated in such abhorrent ways. I only hope the job I do is making a difference and is ensuring a better future for people.

THREE
Hannah is back to following the bread crumbs and it just feels a little lacklustre. The British lapdog is irritatingly inconsistent with his accent; appearing to speak in his native tongue more often than not. I didn’t catch why, but I’m very glad he’s bidding Hannah farewell by the end of the episode.

While I love Hannah, she’s needs something a little bit grittier to get her hands on in the next few episodes or it will lose me. This was my reason for getting into this show, and they’re neglecting it.

Designated-Survivor-S02E02-5075a859d5122323b93b125b5b567975-thumb

FOUR
The frog! Yes, it was funny. I was ammused by newcomer Lyor’s response to the amphibian and his brash behaviour to the animal expert. Even funnier was that everyone agreed with him that the frog was not the best animal to be dedicated to the president.

Yet, I predicted where Tom would fall with this. I knew from the outset that upon seeing the new West Wing occupant, that he would love it.

The shame? That this was a mediocre replay of West Wing’s C.J and the turkeys and it leads me to a bigger concern; Designated Survivor appear to be using the West Wing play book, and that’s not okay with me.

Supergirl S3 Ep1 Girl of Steel

Supergirl S3 Ep1 Girl of Steel

Description: Kara deals with the loss of Mon-El by focusing her energy on being Supergirl and concentrating on a mysterious new threat. Alex confesses a secret to Maggie. A citizen of National City has a mysterious connection to Kara. Lena makes a bold move.

MV5BMzUyNDYxNDUtOTJkNS00ZTcwLWFlMjItNjhhOTEzMGE4YjY5XkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyODA2OTgwNzQ@._V1_SY1000_CR0,0,1495,1000_AL_.jpg

Supergirl has come so far since its first series and I’m no longer fearing its cancelation. However, I’m no longer enjoying my weekly viewing either. It’s missing some of what made series 1 work. I know part of that is Calista Flockheart, but it’s also something more as she makes a cameo this episode, and it doesn’t help much.

Series 3 opens on a rather sad note. Kara’s emotions are raw from the departure of Mon-El. She’s grumpy, apathetic and channelling her inner Buffy Summers from season two’s opener When She Was Bad. It’s actually quite realistic of a breakup and while it depressed the hell out of me, it was good to see even superheroes have issues they struggle to overcome.

Having Heroes alumni Adrian Pasdar play the villain of the week was a little too obvious. The once Petrelli brother is about one role away from being type cast. This storyline, as a result, did nothing for me.

Kara’s sister, Alex, has a wonderful heart to heart with both Supergirl and, later, J’onn J’onzz. While I miss Chyler on Grey’s, she is the perfect fit for this show. Her scenes are moving and heartfelt; so much so that I was reduced to tears by the end.

MV5BYWJjZDI5NTEtOTY1Ny00Y2MwLWFiMmMtZGM1ZDQ5MDE0MTMyXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyODA2OTgwNzQ@._V1_SY1000_CR0,0,1489,1000_AL_

I’m so very happy that they seem to have dropped the Guardian story arc from series two. I’m a little upset at how they’ve adapted and evolved Jimmy Olsen since the shows start and I feel the character is very much picked up and dropped as the narrative requires. I don’t want to lose Mehcad Brooks from the show, but they need to figure out what they’re doing with the character.

I am loving the friendship with Lena Luther, but I’m expecting a fallout from Kara’s failure to disclose her identity at some point. I was sensing a potential romance between her and Alex (knowing Floriana Lima’s Maggie is not long for our screens), however the addition of Odette Annable has made me reconsider this.

MV5BMTE0NTA0NGMtNmQyMy00MjRiLThjNDUtYWE1YTFkM2EwYWU3XkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyODA2OTgwNzQ@._V1_SY1000_CR0,0,1489,1000_AL_

Designated Survivor s2 Ep2: Sting of the Tail

Designated Survivor s2 Ep2: Sting of the Tail
Description:
FBI Agent Hannah Wells finally closes in on Patrick Lloyd, but when the president decides to take action during the White House Correspondents Dinner, members of the Homeland Security Council threaten to derail their plans.

My biggest question around this show, and some others, is: in a time of catch up tv, why do we need a ‘previously on…’? It’s starting to irritate me, and I would rather have a ‘skip ‘previously’ button rather than an intro.

I made very few notes regarding this episode. The show is certainly going a different direction to the previous year and the conspiracy storylines are taking a back seat to the politics. It’s a shame as there are shows out there that have done it better and it feels like Designated Survivor is treading stagnant water.

I’m talking here about the comparisons that can be made between this and the mighty West Wing; a show that has aged well and is as relevant today as it was when it was initially airing.

I predict that Lloyd’s attack on the home of the First Lady’s mother was put in place to bring in a new character. I also feel that the children will not be seen much this season; choosing instead to reference them when possible. This also raises a concern for me; I am aware of audience hatred for the son and I can’t help wonder if that is one of the reasons for the decline in his appearances. I hope not, as it shouldn’t matter what an audience think. It’s the creator’s story; they should be the ones to tell it.

Star Trek Discovery: S1 Ep6 Lethe #hanreview

Star Trek Discovery: S1 Ep6 Lethe

Description: The USS Discovery crew is intrigued by new addition, Lt. Ash Tyler. Sarek seeks Burnham’s help, rekindling memories from her past. Admiral Cornwell questions Lorca’s tactics.

Logical

The developing relationship between Michael and Tilly is wonderful and has an opportunity to grow further in this episode. It’s clear Tilly respects Michael and wants to learn from the officer. She’s unlike any character I’ve come across in the franchise before; Tilly is geeky in a way that sets her apart from other crew. It’s refreshing.

Lorca’s PTSD is beginning to show. It’s quite amazing the contrast of the intimacy to the violence. I’m actually loving this instability within a Captain; and is something they’ve never shown before. Both Pickard and Sisko would have most likely shown this level of PTSD over time.

Even Vulcan’s have daddy issues. Such a brilliant storyline between Michael and Sarek. I love the dream sequences, the reveal and the aftermath. Wonderful writing and it marks the first time I’ve been happy about it’s placement in the timeline.

Erm, okay Kat; can you honestly tell me you didn’t see that coming?! That was a bit rubbish, but I’m more intrigued by Lorca’s response; is he in on it? I get a sneaky feeling he knew she’d be taken, or that he even suspected she would be killed.

Paul, Paul, Paul. I love the engineer. He uses words like ‘groovy’ and ‘noggin’ and totally rips the piss out of Michael. He’s wonderful and his sarcasm is the funniest thing on Star Trek, ever. I need a Paul in my life.

Illogical

‘Your History is well documented’ – Lorca to Michael. Well, it isn’t really is it?! If it were, we’d already know about Michael.

Sarek saved Michael’s life by sharing a horocrux, sorry, katra with Michael; meaning they are intrinsically bonded. Again, really?!

The cheesy Barry White-Like bedroom music?? There was sexual tension between Lorca and Kat anyway; did you really need to cheapen it. Equally, I don’t feel Kat’s anger is justified. Even if you suspected; you wouldn’t put him in charge of such a ship.

A Grey’s Anatomy Tag

A Grey’s Anatomy Tag

After completing the Harry Potter tag, I was wondering if another would pop along. As nothing has, I figured I’d make my own.
I’m going to tag a few people who responded when I did a shout out for this post (and a few others) and it would be great to see it circulate. All I ask is that you credit me, @hscptcrash in your tags so I can see other people’s responses.

How did you discover Grey’s Anatomy?
I got into Grey’s back in 2006. I’d seen adverts for the first series the year before, but I’d never got around to watching it.
When my mum died in February 2006, I found myself struggling to sleep so I went and purchased both this and House. I always wonder if my favourite would have been House, if I’d watched that first.
As it happens, I watched Grey’s first and I fell in love. I binged the hell out of that first series and was almost late for work because I tried to squeeze in a sixth episode the day after buying it.
Ever since, I’ve never been more than 3 episodes behind the US airing. I’ve even been known in the past to set a 3am alarm to watch it ‘live’. I also attempt yearly rewatch.
I have used episodes in lessons and I’m proud to say that at least 7 students started watching the show as a result. This also led to me receiving the best mug in existence from one of my favourite students.

Who is your twisted sister/person?
Gem! She literally is my person; always and forever.

Favourites

Series One; it must be the first series. This show gets it right straight off the bat. While the ensemble works together, the characters don’t always. Meredith is on a journey in this first outing, one that the show never really tops. She has her drama; mum, boyfriend and her internship at the same hospital her mother trained. She should have a breeze, right?
The romances are brilliant, they don’t all tease and quite a few lead to trouble in many different ways. The format of the show has changed very little since the early days and there’s a reason for that; it works. They establish early on the use of key music featured within the episodes and it is something I will always love.

Character Miranda Bailey is my all-time favourite character. She is the embodiment of female power within a male dominated workplace. She’s a mother to many, a flawed yet passionate leader and a role model for people on and off the screen.

Episode The alternative reality episode (S8 Ep13: If/Then). Where to start?! A shiny, happy Mer, an aggressive and scary Christina. Mer and Alex are engaged and Richard is her father. It’s weird and wonderful; right down to returning Charles’ ironic shout ‘just shoot me’.
While the episode has no impact upon the season, it was nice to see the actors have a little fun.

Guest Star Seth Green, who appears in a season 4 double episode (S4 Eps 9 & 10: Crash into Me Parts 1 and 2) as Nick Hanscom; a patient who had an exposed carotid artery after a tumor resection.
He flirts with Lexie, he has an amazing sense of humour and he’s got his awesome ginger hair that I’ve always loved. Okay, things don’t end well for him, but he keeps you smiling.

Death George O’Malley (S5 Ep24: Now or Never). Well, I dare you to not well up at Meredith’s realisation that John Doe, hero of the hour, is actually 007. It was already known that he was leaving the show, but it still came as a shock. I was expecting Izzie to be the one claimed by the Grey’s angel of death.

Wedding Arizona and Callie (S7 Ep20: White Wedding). Such a beautiful couple, until they weren’t. However, they truly had a wonderful wedding, despite the bumps along the way.

Series Finale The hospital shooting (S6 Ep 23 &24: Sanctuary & Death and All His Friends). I wasn’t a fan of this series; it really clunked along. However, that finale was like watching a horror movie. I was at the end of my PGCE and a little sleep deprived; that added to the drama during the first time of watching. However, in the rewatches, it’s interesting to see the build up to those two final episodes.

Storyline The prisoner on death row who is admitted to hospital, days before his execution (S5 Ep12 & 13: Sympathy for the Devil & Stairway to Heaven). I don’t know why I thought it went on for more episodes; perhaps because of it being the infamous falling out between Christian and Mer, which was resolved because of this case.
It’s such an ethical mine field; on the one hand, doctors have an obligation to save everyone’s life, no matter the background. On the other, his death at the hands of the doctors could save the life of an innocent young boy. However, would allowing the inmate to essentially sacrifice himself give him a redemption he doesn’t deserve. Hell, when morally pure Miranda Bailey goes in to beg Shepherd to leave the man to die; you know you’re in a moral grey area that you will be considering for days after you’ve watched it.

Mer Love interest The vet, Finn (S2 & 3). I know, I know… I was meant to choose Derek, love Derek. He was the love of her life, there’s no doubt about that. However, it’s a dangerous relationship; so full of anger and resentment. I always wonder if they would have ended up getting a divorce, you know? They weren’t stable, even at the best of times. Christina was right; he’s not the sun. He never was, and she’s succeeded further without him.
However, Finn?! He was charming and lovely; he brought Izzie lunch, and he accepted that Meredith was dark and twisty.

Couple Lexie and Sloan. They were perfect together; he truly loved her and it showed. They had their ups and downs and each made mistakes, but they were destined to be together.

Your own crush Owen Hunt. Yes, I love McSteamy, but my heart is with the gruff but sweet Owen. It breaks my heart that he keeps picking very emotionally detached, independent women. Especially those who don’t want children.

Actor bow out Christina Yang (S10 Ep24: Fear [of the unknown]). It was good to know at the beginning of the season that she was leaving; it allowed me to prepare for the departure. Yes, it still hurt, but I got to appreciate her while I had the chance.

Zzng

Meredith danger The patient attack (S12 Ep9: The Sound of Silence). Firstly, the episode was directed by John Q actor Denzel Washington. Secondly, a good portion of the episode reflects Meredith’s injuries and is played without any noise. Not since Buffy’s episode Hush, has the sound of silence been used so effectively.

Surgery Bailey having to operate on a man suffering from a tree-man disease and has tree like growths all over his body (S7 Ep3: Superfreak). The surgery itself is rather cool, however my favourite moment is level headed Bailey losing her composure over a resident spider.

Worst

Series Five! I started to think the show wouldn’t last much longer. It wasn’t quite recovering from the departure of Burke, or the scandal that surrounded the actor’s firing.
George was taking a back seat in the stories, the interns played doctor on each other, but not in a sexy way. In fact it led to Sadie almost dying.
Then there was the biggest concern of the series; Izzie and her tumour. Which for me, is by far the worst storyline they have ever had.

Character Izzie Stephens. While she would have been up there as a favourite at the start, her departure left a very bad taste on the show. I’ve lost count of the rewatches I’ve done since her leaving and she irritates me even more each time I do. There may even come a time when I don’t go from the beginning, simply because I can’t stand her.

Episode The mockumentary episode (S7 Ep6: These Arms of Mine). It was a very gimmicky series; later on we have the Musical. With both, its too much of a case of been there, done that. In both cases, others shows have done it better. With this one, ER had a rather successful episode almost a decade earlier.
They tried, it just fell a little short of expectations. There was no emotional ties to the episode and I certainly couldn’t help but feel cut off from the characters.

Guest Star Melissa George as Sadie Harris (S5 Ep8: These ties that Bind – S5 Ep15: Before and After). She just didn’t gel with the cast and slumped very quickly. I will give the show credit that they found a good storyline to get rid of her.

Death McDreamy (S11 Ep 24: You’re My Home) While I guess it’s fitting that it revolved around his brain, it just wasn’t a good enough goodbye for the character that everyone loved. It also didn’t hold the emotion that some other deaths did.

Wedding Christina and Owen (S7: Ep1: With You I Am Born Again); for me they should never have married in the first place so I wasn’t invested in this occasion. At least Christina got to keep her eyebrows this time around, and Meredith’s hair was amazing.

Series Finale Series 4: (Ep 17: Freedom). I just find the romantic gesture of the house so out of character and actually the opposite of romantic. The episode is flat and lacks any power that others do; largely to do with the writer’s strike of 2008.

Storyline Izzie seeing Deny’s ghost. Just, no! Hell no! And I am aware that it’s the beautiful Denny, but no! It was a ridiculous concept that brought out the worst parts of Izzie. Even the cancer diagnosis didn’t make it okay.

Couple Izzie and George. Seriously? Seriously? I mean, seriously? You have beautiful, positive and passionate Callie worshipping the ground you walk on, and you cheat on her with Izzie?! Then you attempt a relationship with her? No, no, no George!

Actor bow out Izzie Stevens (Catherine Heigle); what an awful way to leave a show. It brought you back into the limelight and helped you win awards, and this is how you repay them?

Meredith danger I’m going to say the shooting (S6 Ep 23 &24: Sanctuary & Death and All His Friends); when Christina has to operate on Derek, Meredith ends up at the business end of the gunman’s gun. She places herself there and it’s not the first time she’s gambled her life away.

Surgery The deer! (S4 Ep1: A Change is Going to Come) Poor Izzie, she has a complex about her interns and her Bailey riff hasn’t worked. So how does she recover their respect? She operates on a deer. It’s always things like this that make me wonder how a show can keep going.

Top 5 Quotes
1. Chin up. Put your shoulders back, walk proud, strut a little. Don’t lick your wounds: celebrate them. The scars you bear are the signs of a competitor. You’re in a lion fight, Stevens. Just because you didn’t win doesn’t mean you don’t know how to roar. – Richard (S4 Ep12: Where the Wild Things Are)
2. If you love someone, you tell them. Even if you’re scared that it’s not the right thing. Even if you’re scared that it’ll cause problems. Even if you’re scared that it will burn your life to the ground, you say it, and you say it loud and you go from there.-Mark Sloan (Season 9 Episode 2: Remember the Time)
3. O’Malley, stop looking at my vajayjay- Bailey (S2 Ep17: As We Know It)
4. You think that you’re so bad ass because you lived, but I’m the reason why you lived. And while you were dying you were crying out for the wife who left you. So that’s the opposite of bad ass for whatever it’s worth. – Lexie (S7: Ep1: With You I Am Born Again)
5. You Don’t destroy a person that you love. – Callie (S7 Ep2: Shock to the System)

Top 5 Songs


1. A Little Respect. A, Erasure cover by Carrie Mac
2. Breath (2am)- Anna Nalick
3. Portions for Foxes – Rilo Kiley
4. Youth – Daughter
5. Life is Short – Butterfly Boucher

Star Trek Discovery: S1 Ep5 Choose Your Pain

Star Trek Discovery: S1 Ep5 Choose Your Pain

Description:  While on a mission, Lorca is captured by the Klingons and unexpectedly finds himself in the company of prisoner of war Starfleet Lieutenant Ash Tyler and notorious criminal Harry Mudd.

MV5BMzE3YjkwZTgtNjdlNC00N2Q2LTgzNTctMzA0YjJkZGNlY2IzXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNzQ0MDUyMzg@._V1_


Logical
So much good in this episode; it’s really starting to find its stride. Michael is a unique character and I do like that we get to see her showing empathy for creature within a dream sequence. It wasn’t a plot device or a gimmick. It was a way to show that she was processing an ethical dilemma.
Lorca and his decision to keep Michael on the ship; he’s honest and is able to quote Sarfleet regulations at Admiral Cornwell. I like that his reprimand was done in private and not with the others in their meeting.

“The more you hurt someone, the less helpful they become.”

Never have truer words been spoken. It’s such a weighted line for me, for so many reasons. It’s just a shame that Michael and Dr Hugh Colber are ignored; sending the creature into a catatonic state when Lorca is abducted and Saru takes command.
Speaking of Lorca’s abduction, we a given such a wonderful treat in this episode, in the form of Rainn Wilson. He’s a lovely, joyous nod to the Original Series in the form of rogue trader, Harry Mudd. I geeked out and I can’t tell you what pleased me more; Harry Mudd making an appearance or him being played by the Office’s Dwight!! It is genius casting and I have a sense that he’s good on his threat ‘You haven’t seen the last of me’

MV5BZmNkN2IzZWItYzc3My00MTUzLTgwZTUtNTRhNmNhNDZmN2EwXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNzQ0MDUyMzg@._V1_

Now, Lt Paul Stamets had yet another impeccable episode and has projected this franchise beyond its usual parameters. Firstly, he’s involved in the shows first F-bomb. It’s done, no massive deal is made of it, but there’s something there with its declaration. Something I love and adore beyond comprehension. It’s language after all and is showing it in its true anthropological state. Swearing is not a thing that is attributed to class or intelligence but more an expression of passion, anger and wonder.
Secondly, this dude is bad ass. We already know that he is a man of ethical standing; he didn’t sign up for this. So of course, having it brought to his attention that they are exploiting the creature, he uses himself to generate power for the spore drive. Insanely stupid, I’ll give you that, but it’s also incredibly brave.
Finally, he’s broken my heart. It turns out he’s a taken man. However, I’m going to forgive him because of what this relationship means for Star Trek.

It turns out Paul is married to the Doctor. So not only do we have our very first same sex couple within Trek, we have our first Starfleet established couple from the very start. While obviously having the will they, won’t they tension is good for a show; it means more to me to have this. Right at the end, without much fanfare, we see the couple getting ready for bed. It’s intimate, comfortable and boy, do I love them together. I can’t wait to see this develop further… especially with that final scene bombshell.

Added bonus, the Klingons didn’t bug me so much in this episode.

 

MV5BN2JkN2JmNGQtMGMwYi00ZDk3LWFlYWUtNmU2NzMwM2VmODFmXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNzQ0MDUyMzg@._V1_

Illogical

The spore drive technology; we know it’s not going to be successful. It’s a shame that we’re going into this storyline without any hope. I don’t like watching something unfold when I know the ending.

Again, I’m still not feeling the time frame. Yes, I’m super excited to get my geek on with Harry Mudd. But name dropping old characters is not going to be enough to win me over; especially when you have holograms standing on deck to talk to an on-board crew. It’s not going to align with the existing franchise and it will have a shelf life. Again, it would have had more freedom had they have set it in another time. Sigh.

MV5BZWI4MDk4ZGYtODU1Ni00NWQ1LWI4YTAtOTVmYjkzYmU5MzZlXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNjc5Mjg0NjU@._V1_

 

Star Trek Discovery S1 ep2: Battle at the Binary Stars

Star Trek Discovery
S1 ep2: Battle at the Binary Stars
From IMDB:
Escaping from the brig while the ship is under attack, Burnham joins the captain in an audacious plan to end a battle rapidly escalating into war.

MV5BMGNjOThlYmEtM2YwYy00N2Y4LThmYjUtNjIwZGIxMzg2MTgyXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyMjk3NTUyOTc@._V1_

The Logical

There’s a wonderful use of flashbacks that allow us to see how Michael has changed in the 7 years since entering Starfleet. It gives us a good idea of how much impact the Vulcan training had on the human psyche.

The battle scenes throughout this episode are absolutely incredible and quite possibly some of the best I’ve seen on TV. It’s a violent episode, filled with sacrifice.

All I’ve placed in my notes is the ethics of martyrdom and prisoners of war. I’m pretty certain it was in reference to the Captain wanting to destroy the Klingon ship instead of capturing the leader. It was an incredible scene and something as a teacher who looks at moral and ethical decisions, it’s good to see that it’s still as relevant as ever.

The gathering of the Klingon dead was deep and beautiful; it seemed to hark back to the Viking mythological roots the Klingons have.

Having the episode end with Michael imprisoned for life for treason is an interesting and bold move. I’m curious to see where this goes.

The Illogical

Having Michell Yeo as ‘special guest star’ on the opening credits is a big spoiler. I really wish they’d made a creative decision on that one.

I’m sure I’m going to be bitching about this one all series, but this world that has been created is far too advanced for where it takes place in the timeline. I’m not just talking about the style of the show; the technology used is too advanced. For example; the containment field in which Michael is held in. While I was geeking out about how it remained intake during the firefight, it just isn’t believable that this would exist in a time before Jayneway, let alone Kirk.

It’s not just the believability though; it’s the decision of the writers. You want all this fancy technology? great. You want a timeline unpolluted? Sure. You know the easy way to ensure you get all this without pissing people off? Put it outside of the cannon timeline. Maybe there’s more to it than this, I HOPE there’s more to it than this, because I will struggle as a fan if there’s not.

I’m curious as to whether they reused sets from the 2009 film; the Klingon ship looked awfully familiar to Nero’s ship.

So, Michael is heading to prison. Will it be the same one Kirk spent time in during one of the silver screen outings? Is the series going to spend a chunk of time in the prison like one of the poorer series of Red Dwarf? Aren’t all the Star Treks (excluding OS and … oh, never mind) named after their primary vessels?
It seems a little, I don’t know… anti-climactic, knowing that she’s the protagonist.

Star Trek Discovery S1 Ep4: The Butcher’s Knife Cares Not for the Lamb’s Cry

Star Trek Discovery
S1 ep4: The Butcher’s Knife Cares Not for the Lamb’s Cry
From IMDB:
With tensions and stakes high as Starfleet continues in their efforts to end the war with Klingons, Burnham begins to settle in to her new position aboard the U.S.S. Discovery.

MV5BY2MyY2U2YzItZjY1Mi00YzRlLWIxMGUtYmU4MTA3NWEzOGJjXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNzQ0MDUyMzg@._V1_

Firstly, how amazing is Netflix letting you skip the intro?! It’s not that I don’t like the intro, at all, it’s just that it’s nice to get into the meat of the show. Especially when there is an extensive ‘previously on…’ that I would rather skip instead.

This is my favourite episode so far, but it also has my least favourite bits in it too.

The Logical

From the very start of this episode, the effects are incredible. I’m blown away by the quality and consistency of them; they’re of the standard I’m used to in the movies; seen when the ship goes into warp.

I’m loving the gender and species diversity at play on board Discovery. While it’s something I would then delve into a be moan about, I’m just going to bask in the female presence for now.

Michael gets a shout out for the Spock’s trademark “fascinating.” It was such a joy to hear, and I may have replayed it more than a few times. I loved her storyline and I loved the morality that was being set up; seeing the pain and emotion on Michael’s face as she realises the consequence of the solution to the spore drive. It’s heart breaking, and I’m curious to see how Michael responds over the next few episodes.

MV5BNDdiOTBiMGEtNjFkMi00Y2I0LWEyYzktYzVkNGVmNjM2ODJmXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNzQ0MDUyMzg@._V1_

Now, I need to talk about my favourite part of the show. Lt Paul Stamets, Discovery’s engineer. He’s played by Anthony Rapp. While undeniably beautiful, it is his comic timing and his passion for doing the right thing that has won my heart. I’ve said it, so now I need to renounce the Tudyk. My notes while watching episode four was littered with ‘I love this man’
It started from the moment he attempted to stand up to the Captain and expressed his concerns about using the spore drive. Stamets is not going to be someone who takes orders blindly (and I predict that this is going to come back into play throughout the series).
Then he goes and gets his nose smashed, in what was one of the boldest scenes of realism I’ve ever seen in a Trek; too many times has the franchise gone big and it’s lost me in the prosthetics. I bloody felt Stamets’ pain.
My favourite scene comes after Discovery is saved from a gravitational pull and we get our first glimpse inside the medical bay. I got my second biggest chuckle of the episode:

The frontal lobe is overrated.

Before the Captain comes in to tear a strip out of him for an unsuccessful spore warp (I’m never going to get used to saying that). In unison both myself and Stamets utter ‘I/he did warn you.’
He is so passionate about the mission they are currently on not being the one he signed up for, that his technology was not intended for this use. Damn, this thread is going to analyse advancements we’ve already seen and help us question if it’s okay to pervert the course of intent?! The biggest question is; if this isn’t what he signed up for, is this vessel going rogue or are the crew patsies?

Of course, I can’t leave it there. I have to tell you what gained my top chuckle of the episode;

“That hardly seems fair; I always wanted to converse with my mushrooms.”

We see the frost between Michael and Stamets thaw as we see them work together to solve both of their problems; her big beast and his engine. It turns out one’s the lock, the other the key. I wonder what side of the fence Stamets will be on when Michael shares her findings. For a Vulcan trained human, Michael is quite the empath and while Stamets joked about losing his feelings; I don’t think his ethics will allow Ripper to be exploited.

The Illogical

One of the Klingons, Voq, looks too much like the engineers from Prometheus. They’re losing their identity and uniqueness with all the mythology that is being woven into the back story.

On that note, I’m so bored of the Klingons as a whole; it’s great that they can show the Klingon language, but it’s distracting from the grander story. It’s also too religious for my liking; the story is fast becoming a Abrahamic/Muhammad allegorical story and I really don’t like it.

I’m not sure I like the Captain. I’m sure I’m meant to feel on edge about him and I’m starting to have ‘bad leader’ vibes, but I really don’t want that. I’m used to trusting my Captains; yes they waver and sometimes show bad judgement, but there’s something more at play here.

MV5BMTFkZmZkYTQtNzIxOS00YjI5LTg3NzYtYmQwZWZhOTYzY2RmXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNzQ0MDUyMzg@._V1_

Final thoughts
My illogical list is getting shorter each week; that must be something. However, the Klingons are a fundamental flaw that I do expect to see a big payoff for sticking with.
I still take issue with the timeline, but I am intrigued with theories online that suggest Lorca (or the timeline itself) is from the Mirror Universe. I think that would be a cheap trick, and I do like the idea that Starfleet is not the prefect of the universe; that there are some people who dance in the shades of grey. I just hope when the time comes, it’s a gamble for the greater good.

MV5BZjE5OGI5ZDAtZDAyZi00OWVlLThiMjctODIxNDM2M2JlNzI0XkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNzQ0MDUyMzg@._V1_

Star Trek Discovery S1 ep3: Context is For Kings

Star Trek Discovery
S1 ep3: Context is For Kings
From IMDB:
Burnham finds herself aboard the U.S.S. Discovery, where she quickly realizes things are not as they seem, including the mysterious Captain Gabriel Lorca.

star-trek-discovery-season-1-episode-3-review-context-is-for-kings

The Logical

This is so different from any Star Trek ever to be broadcast before. It certainly is going boldly and going places we’ve never been. We finally get to meet the crew that I have an impression we will be with for the remainder of the series.

There are two characters that I really enjoyed this episode:

The chief engineer, Paul Stamets, is brilliant. He’s a grump, proud and passionate. I really do like the gritty realism this gives the show. I also am liking that he doesn’t seem to be the Captain’s best friend like with all previous incarnations. There’s a clear hierarchy to the crew; one I’m interested to see how this progresses.

The other character was the Captain, played by Jason Issacs. Captain Gabriel Lorca is not a normal Starfleet Captain; he is not clear cut or led by his morals. There will be no seeking sage advice from this Captain, and while I would not want to see the Borg make an appearance, I would love to see him take them on.
I get the feeling he’s not a good guy, but I’m not sure I care about that. His Malfoy charms aside, there’s just something that to me suggests that he will be loyal to his crew and that is all I need, for now.

We have our first away mission; it delves into Alien territory and I loved it. The effects, including the deformed engineer and the action sequences.

Finally, the leading lady; Michael. Her story takes on a twisted Die Hard meets Doctor Who. While she was considered disgraced by Starfleet, Lorca doesn’t like waste and woos her as the Doctor would a companion.
The part I loved the most about Michael’s journey in this episode is her references to Alice in Wonderland. To me, it harks back (or forward) to Jim Kirk and his love of Peter Pan.

The Illogical
There was an extensive ‘previously on…’ Is it really necessary in this day and age, when most people don’t watch live and missing an episode is near on impossible.

It took three episodes to get to the show’s namesake ship. That’s a little long considering that it’s a 15 episode series order.

I’m bored already of the ‘but Michael is a man’s name.’ Are we really forgetting the Walton’s Michael Learned?! It’s not strange, it’s frigging awesome and having crew members take issue is really narrow minded and archaic.

The chief engineer, Paul Stamets, is brilliant but I couldn’t help wishing it was Alan Tudyk in the role.

It’s like the Walking Dead of Trek; very dark, very serious and very very depressing.

I did, for a brief moment, wonder if the reason why we’re here before the missions of Kirk is because time travel is involved. I can’t quite get my predictions to mesh with what I already know. However, I’m starting to get the feeling that there is a reason why it’s set at this point.

MV5BNTYyYjA4YTctNDBjOC00NWQ2LTg4MmQtMzM2MjVmMTNiNmFkXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyMjk3NTUyOTc@._V1_

Star Trek Discovery

Star Trek Discovery
Netflix exclusive- Airing weekly
597afec8a4d8fc500cd428dc7808ded3259c1632.jpg

Background
Some point in 1995 I was sent home ill from school. Back in the day, we only had 4 channels so there was nothing on tv. So I pressed play for the VCR, never realising what I would watch would fundamentally change who I was.
Prior to this point I was a passive viewer of all things Trek. However, there was something about this Deep Space Nine two-parter presented as a mini movie that caught my attention. Namely a character called Dr Julian Bashir, who would become my first ever crush.

I have, ever since, found myself involved in the world. I dressed up for my shift in the cinema back in 2009’s opening weekend of JJ Abrams’ reboot and I even wrote a fan fiction about DS9 way before I even knew it was a thing.

I was very sad when Enterprise ended. Not only the fact that it marked the first time in recent television history that there would be no space based shows on tv, but the horrific way in which the final season went was a nightmare. It was almost as if someone uttered the phrase ‘jump the shark’ about the third season and the creators went ‘hold my beer.’

However, in the new age of Netflix we have had a resurgence. There’s a new Starfleet crew about to boldly go … most likely somewhere all the others have been before.

 

S1 ep1: A Vulcan Hello
From IMDB:
While patrolling Federation space, the U.S.S. Shenzhou encounters an object of unknown origin, putting First Officer Michael Burnham to her greatest test yet.

star-trek-discovery

Characters
It was a fine first outing for the new show. There’s some good characters and the creators have chosen to make the protagonist the ship’s First Officer instead of the usual Captain. It’s surprising how much of a difference this makes and I can’t put my finger on what it is.

Michael is an awesome character, played by The Walking Dead alumni, Sonequa Martin-Green. A human raised on Vulcan after a traumatic event killed her own parents. It’s an interesting way of representing the human/Vulcan conflict and I am looking forward to seeing how it pans out.
Knowing that Michael is ready for her own ship, but declines add tension to the first episode and I predict it’ll be the case for some time.
Another addition to the crew is Doug Jones of Hellboy playing Lt Saru; an alien race unseen before now in the universe. He is a wonderful breath of cautious air. However, other than the three core characters, we are relatively sparse of people we learn anything about.

saru-star-trek-discovery

Visuals and Music
It’s dark and glossy, with those JJ lense flares. It’s attractive and inviting with just a hint of horror.
The music is a riff of the Original Series’ iconic melody with it’s own identity. It’s incredibly beautiful and something I will look forward to hearing week in week out for the foreseeable future.

Plot
This is where my biggest issue comes in and the part that I will always have issues with, unless something massive changes. The writers have a futuristic world filled with possibilities and the freedom to do what they wish. However, they’ve planted themselves smack bang in between the timeline of two existing shows, meaning the technology, uniforms and cultural progression is all off.

One of our main characters is an alien that we’ve never heard of before, or after, this. While I enjoy his character, a simple relocation within the timeline would make this much better.
While on the subject of the timeline; the Klingons, that have been missing for 100 years…conflicts with the meeting of Enterprise with the Klingons in the pilot episode Broken Bow.

It just frustrates me, as it becomes convoluted for the sake of it. For a show about a crew that goes where no mankind have been before, I really wish the creators and writers would perhaps take it on as their own mantra.