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Amph Engage! The Star Trek: TNG General Discussion

Discussion in 'Community' started by Constant_shadow, Jan 3, 2006.

  1. Jedimarine

    Jedimarine Jedi Master star 5

    Feb 13, 2001
    See, I like how it turned was perhaps TNG's "glimpse" of where the franchise was being carried by DS9...characters who not only have their personal flaws, but who have different opinions about those flaws and "beliefs" than the supposedly open-minded federation. Picard's reactions are clearly indicative of this.

    In the end, stripping away all the junk about prime directives, chain of command, oaths...the pain Picard feels is reaction to Ro's abandonment of him, not the truth, by this stage, I think Picard really is suspect himself as to the wisdom coming from Starfleet Command...but he is of the old guard, lock step and true believing...and though Ro admires that and desperately wants Picard's approval, she cannot live for something she doesn't believe in.

    Ro makes Picard question his own loyalties as much as he questions hers...and that's part of the betrayal he feels...because part of him understands her choice, and it's like a self-inflicted wound.

    Which in turn leads to a finale where Picard trusts none save his closest friends...the federation was not going to help him in any time period. Get a taste again in First Contact with the Federation keeping the Enterprise away from the fight...and again with "Insurrection" obviously...this, of course, all symptomatic of where the franchise had gone in DS9.

    I love it...Ro Laren spits in the face of Roddenberry's utopian dream, and waves the middle finger on the way out the door. Picard hates it...but wishes it weren't so poignantly appropriate, and perhaps, wishes he could do the same.
  2. The2ndQuest

    The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jan 27, 2000
  3. The2ndQuest

    The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jan 27, 2000
    I guarentee nothing I write in this post will have anything anywhere near as great as JediMarine's last post, so I'll just have to salute the show in the best way I can- with a ton of images! ;)

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    TNG 725/726: All Good Things...
    -Premise: Picard is mysteriously traveling back and forth through time, thanks to Q, and he is unwittingly to blame for the destruction of Humanity. (Series Finale)

    -T2Q Comments: Q fittingly returns again (though it's a shame the opening credits have to spoil the various guest stars like him)- and time travel, huzzah!

    Ha, must be from having watched First Contact & Nemesis so often, but it took a long while during the vineyard conversation for me to realize Geordi didn't have his VISOR on- or even (distinguishable) cybernetic implants. So, Geordi married Leah afterall (I have to assume her unseen husband stood no chance against the collected desire of fandom ;)).

    Interesting to note that this flashback with Tasha is set previous to even the first scene of the pilot (as are several of the related scenes that occur subsequently), with the beginning of a shuttle-approach sequence akin to TMP & TWOK (albeit abrievated).

    Damn does Data have a lot of cats- Spiner musta loved that.

    I'm not surprised that the Man-Skirt isn't present in the flashbacks, or that Deanna's hair and makeup, while similar, isn't as awful. Also interesting that these "past" events play out more or less like they "really" did, as Picard hadn't changed them until he calls red alert.

    The slip of giving Worf instructions instead of Tasha is one of my favorite little moments. I am also amused that they circumvent the lack of a central chief engineer in the first season by using Miles.

    Showing Riker's distraction at Worf/Deanna at least softens one portion of my infinite hatred of Insurrection by showing that at least Riker/Troi wasn't completely restarted out of the blue.

    So glad they at least pursued the Picard/Crusher relationship some more before series end. And they kiss! horray!

    The Klingons take over the Romulan Empire- that's quite fitting, and I can't help but wonder if the alternate-future loss of Romulus (and some events in Countdown) might accelerate that outcome...

    I dig the revised Starfleet logo seen on the transmission screen- I'd like to see that come to actually use eventually. Mention of Romulus st
  4. Jedimarine

    Jedimarine Jedi Master star 5

    Feb 13, 2001
    Good Finale...not fantastic...but serves it's series well...doesn't try too hard and doesn't go outside the audience expectations and demands like say "Enterprise" does.

    Excellent "full circle" gimmick with Q and farpoint...though the advancement in the franchise aesthetics since season one could not be fully overcome.

    How the Klingons take out the Romulans is's absurd to me.

    Crusher/Picard lip lock! ;)

    Crusher/Picard amicable divorce? :mad:

    My biggest disappointment of the finale is "Admiral Riker" about a gutless jelly fish...have they done any stories about him on the Titan? Did he get captured on this first mission? Zap Brannigan instills more confidence.

    I caught the "tachyons from the Enterprise" thing right off as well.

    What I don't understand is how, without Q's does the the "rift" start in the's only by triggering Picard's jump that there would be a federation ship within lightyears of the neutral zone. It's a bit of a stretch to say Q helps Picard understand how to save humanity when it wouldn't have been put in jeopardy to begin with without his intrusion. Should've been another of Q's games rather then a trial "always blaming me"...IT WAS YOUR FAULT...AGAIN!


    As to "time travel" vs. "AU"'s a difficult thing because:

    1) Picard indicates that events between timelines don't seem to effect or be recalled by the others...which would make me think it's AU.

    2) Except that every time period effects the same "time"'s not a dimensional portal or similar AU premises.

    As the "reality" of the timeline plays out radically different, I'm inclined to call it all AU.

    And of course...only in an AU could the Klingons beat the Romulans.

    Additionally...this is SO similar to "Parallels"...making it AU only makes sense.


    Picard playing cards at the end is great...I just wonder who is minding the ship...DON'T FLY INTO THE NEBULA!!!!

    Anyway...this is WAY better then Generations...or any of the TNG movies for that matter.
  5. zacparis

    zacparis VIP star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 1, 2003
    I love it when Picard orders Earl Grey tea but it's not in the computer yet. :p
  6. The2ndQuest

    The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jan 27, 2000

    The Klingon/Romulan thing is curious- I have to assume the Klingons simply have greater numbers. We know from the one episode that 2 or 3 birds of prey can take out a warbird in a standoff. And if it came down to hand to hand combat I don't think there's any doubt who'd win in those encounters.

    Admiral Riker I think is mean to be a warning of what Riker could become following the rift between him and Worf and Deanna's passing. And they have done a whole series of Titan novels (which included the fan contest to submit the "official" design of the ship as well). I have one or two left over from my store that I'll probably read one day, but I haven't gotten to them yet.

    From what I've read, I believe Q's comments about the Continuum are supposed to indicate that they ordered him to create the anomoly as a test/trial through Picard.
  7. Koohii

    Koohii Jedi Master star 5

    May 30, 2003
    I absolutely hated the finale, because it was so full of plot holes, self back-patting, and generally didn't make any sense. The 'paradox' whatever, bluntly, was insultingly stupid, even for NextGen... It' like Riker&Troi's mentally defective kid wrote the script.

    Simply put, they forced the script, and it failed.

    "The whole show has been the test".
    Uh... NO!

    Doesn't make sense.
    But as the season finalle, it's probablly essential.
  8. Jedimarine

    Jedimarine Jedi Master star 5

    Feb 13, 2001
    The Romulans were always portrayed as being kept in checked by the uneasy cooperation of the Federation and long as everyone hated the Romulans more then anyone else, it kept the balance.

    And as I recall from a couple instances...Romulans are pretty good in a fight...much stronger then humans, with the "skill" of Vulcans. Not Klingons or Jem'Hadar ferocity...but considerable warriors.


    So we're suppose to see Riker's career as a regret filled saga of tears and mementos...even keeping the D out of mothballs is just nostalgic nonsense for wanting a time when he was an inferior. I thought they wanted you to think of him as being the "guardian of the group"...but it comes off as crying over spilled milk.


    I guess if the whole thing was a "trial" by the Continuum, it makes more sense...but the whole "I'm not the one who destroys humanity, you do..." is poorly worded.
  9. RK_Striker_JK_5

    RK_Striker_JK_5 Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Jul 2, 2003
    Riker's not bad in the Titan novels, but he's not exactly Kirk-caliber.

    Koohi... :rolleyes: You hate almost everything, don't you.
  10. The2ndQuest

    The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jan 27, 2000
    I don't think they were trying to imply the whole show was the test- Q evens states in one of the previous episodes that the "jury's still out" or what have you, which supports the "trial is ongoing" theme, but it's a background thing (and, obviously, Q wasn't in on that the whole time).

    Speaking of Q- one of the mixed memories I had of the franchise was of the Continuum in civil war or something to that effect, which i thought was TNG, and thus was sorta expecting it and a tad perplexed when it didn't happen, but I guess it's Voyager, huh?
  11. zacparis

    zacparis VIP star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 1, 2003
    Yep. Like the Borg, Voyager totally gimped the Q Continuum.
  12. The2ndQuest

    The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jan 27, 2000
    Of course, in commenting on the lack of Manskirts in the flashbacks, I made one oversight that I must correct now before I forget...

    Manskirts: 4, Masculinity: 1


    Ok, so, before I hit the series as a whole, I'll look back at my reviews/breakdown of Season 7 of TNG. Even though we're treating the episode as a whole, to help maintain similar ratios to most of the prior seasons, it'll count as two episodes.

    TNG Season 7

    Definitely Essential: (15)
    701: Descent Part II
    704: Gambit, Part I
    705: Gambit, Part II
    708: Attached
    710: Inheritance
    711: Parallels
    712: The Pegasus
    715: Lower Decks
    716: Thine Own Self
    718: Eye of the Beholder
    720: Journey's End
    721: Firstborn
    724: Preemptive Strike
    725/726: All Good Things...

    Potentially Essential, But Not Necessarily Good: (0)
    (however, I do count several episodes categorized otherwise as borderline Potentially Essential, so that's noted here)

    Good Episodes, But Not Necessarily Essential: (5)
    706: Phantasms
    707: Dark Page
    709: Force of Nature
    713: Homeward
    722: Bloodlines

    Average Episodes: (6)
    702: Liasons
    703: Interface
    714: Sub Rosa
    717: Masks
    719: Genesis
    723: Emergence

    OK Episodes: (0)

    Forgettable: (0)

    Trash: (0)

    So, out of 26 episodes, the now-standard-season-length's 20 episodes worth of episodes Adds up to the stuff you either should see, or should consider seeing, 3/4ths of them being "essential" stories to the ongoing franchise or too damn good to pass up.

    Compared to the previous seasons:

    Season 1: 9 DE, 4 PE, 3 GE, 2 AE, 5 OK, 2 Forgettable, 1 Trash
    Season 2: 5 DE, 1 PE, 6 GE, 2 AE, 2 OK, 3 Forgettable, 3 Trash
    Season 3: 12 DE, 1 PE, 7 GE, 5 AE, 1 OK
    Season 4: 16 DE, 1 PE, 5 GE, 4 AE
    Season 5: 12 DE, 1 PE, 9 GE, 4 AE
    Season 6: 16 DE, 1 PE, 7 GE, 2 AE

    And, for those wantinga reminder of what I ranked Trash and Forgettable (essentially, the bottom 9 worst episodes:

    -103: The Naked Now
    -218: Up the Long Ladder
    -219: Manhunt
    -222: Shades of Grey

    -104: Code of Honor
    -114: Angel One
    -201: The Child
    -205: Loud As a Whisper
    -212: The Royale

    Next, I'll look back and pick out some of the cream of the crop- the best episodes of the series/my favorites, ignoring the need for related "essential" backstory episodes or even the episode's actually essentialness.

    My unthemed Fan Collective, if you will.
  13. Jedimarine

    Jedimarine Jedi Master star 5

    Feb 13, 2001
    analysis on top of love excel, don't ya 2nd?
  14. The2ndQuest

    The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jan 27, 2000
    I've bene known to use it from time to time. Though not here. I track these Trek reviews in a .rtf file for each series. I make a heading for each classification, then make an entry for an episode (and, being the eternal optimist, i always start them under the Defnitely Essential category- it's up to them to determine if they get downgraded ;)) which tends to be my quick notes version of my thoughts as i watch the episode, add the trivia notes, then cut and paste it under the classification that was determined.

    When I actually post the notes to these threads, I rewrite the quick notes thoughts to better present them more coherantly. ;)

    The final TNG file (including the AU and time travel logs) clocks in at 208k, is a little over 67 pages long and includes 35,366 words and 172,656 characters (not counting spaces).

    Compared to my 24k TOS file... 8 pages and 3.453 words. I guess I just had a lot to say about TNG ;)

    As to actual analysis- so far as it pertains to the core purpose of this thread, it looks like one is pretty safe buying Seasons 3+ on DVD, as, on average, you'll get 19-21 Essential or Good episodes. The first two seasons, your mileage will vary more, with only about half or fewer episodes meeting that qualification (probably even less considering I probably went easy on a few of the early season episodes).

    Sure, that's been more or less the common consensus on the subject, but it's nice to have semi-solid numbers to back that suggestion up.
  15. Jedimarine

    Jedimarine Jedi Master star 5

    Feb 13, 2001
    The OCD in me just screamed in my brain.



  16. The2ndQuest

    The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jan 27, 2000
    Compiling your own Best Of collection would be my recommendation for 1 & 2 :D
  17. Jedimarine

    Jedimarine Jedi Master star 5

    Feb 13, 2001
    It is a more fulfilling achievement to go through it all.

    Just as no EU reader should skip "Crystal Star" or "Planet of Twilight" forever.

    "You take the good, you take the bad, you take them both and there you have..."
  18. The2ndQuest

    The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jan 27, 2000
    Generally, I agree- to see it once and experience the whole of the thing is a unique a fuflling one. But after that, there's simply going to be a crap load of episodes that you're not going to want to watch over again in normal viewing or for the purposes of watching a complete story arc- something compunded by the sheer volume of material in the Trek franchise.

    It's one thing to rewatch a few movies over and over. But 28 seasons of TV? That's an incredible amount of time to view. To cull and trim out even just a third of that material makes it far more manageable and more accessible if you're introducing a series to someone else- and I've found that if they're not particularly sold on it something initially (which, given the tendancy for Trek shows to have relatively weaker-than-usual first and second seasons, can sometimes be difficult to overcome), trimming out the bad and focusing on the core stories and best episodes initially helps considerably.

    I've long done the same for B5- narrowing the 1st season down to about 9 key episodes to help get people hooked (and the quicker you can get to The Coming of Shadows and other key Season 2 episodes, the quicker that outcome becomes more likely).

    (Though, in B5's case, it's first season has the somewhat unique facet of being more enjoyable during your second viewing of the series to uncover all the hidden backstory hints and revealtions that were tucked away and undetectavle without knowledge of what was to come at hand.)

    Anywho, at a glance, here's my Quest Collectives (ganted, some of these are guilty pleasures, but that's hard to avoid, no?):

    Season 1:
    The Best: Skin of Evil, Conspiracy
    Best of the Best: Keep em both.

    Season 2:
    The Best: Elementary. Dear Data, A Matter of Honor, Q Who, The Emissary, Peak Performance
    Best of the Best: Gotta keep Moriarty, the Borg and Riker's Klingon adventure. The others don't absolutely need to be sene, though Emissary is the better of those two.

    Season 3:
    The Best: The Ensigns of Command, Booby Trap, The Defector, Yesterday's Enterprise, Allegiance, Sarek, The Best of Both Worlds, Part I
    Best of the Best: Ensigns is a guilty pleasure- it's here because of that awesome Picard moment at the end, really. But it can be culled. Likewise, Allegiance is also here for some Picard badassery towards the end. They're the only two on the lsit that aren't "Don't Miss" caliber. Booby Trap, Defector, Yesterday's Enterprise, Sarek and BOBW speak for themselves.

    Season 4:
    The Best: The Best of Both Worlds, Part II, Family, Brothers, Remember Me, The Wounded, Galaxy's Child, Nth Degree, Qpid, The Drumhead, Redemption I
    Best of the Best: I can see trimming Brothers and Qpid (the latter is really there because of the "Not a Merry Man" line, to be honest ;)). Galaxy's Child isn't a spectacularly excellent episode, but unique enough, IMO, to warrant inclusion. Family is a great epilogue to the Borg two-parter, Remember Me is probably the best or second best Crusher episode, and super-Barclay is great.

    Season 5:
    The Best: Redemption II, Silicon Avatar, Disaster, Unification I, Unification II, A Matter of Time, Conundrum, Power Play, Cause and Effect, The First Duty, I, Borg, The Next Phase, The Inner Light.
    Best of the Best: Even though I don't rank it's original appearance, the crystalline entity was most effective here. A Matter of Time can be trimmed, and maybe The Next Phase, but I think the others should be seen/provide notable variety. Disaster in particular is awesome, and I have a soft spot for Power Play.

    Season 6:
    The Best: Realm of Fear, Relics, True Q, Rascals, Chain of Command, part I, Chain of Command, part II, Ship in a Bottle, Face of the Enemy, Tapestry, Starship Mine, The Chase, Frame of Mind, Rightful Heir, Second Chances, Descent Part I
    Best of the Best: Trim out Realm of Fear, Frame of Mind and maybe Rightful Heir and maybe True Q. Realm of Fear is a guilty pleasure. Chain of Command, Ship in a Bottle and Starship Mine definitely cannot be missed, though.

    Season 7:
    The Best: Descent Part II, Gambit, Part I, Gambit, Part II
  19. Jedimarine

    Jedimarine Jedi Master star 5

    Feb 13, 2001
    I understand...and agree to some extent...but just because I have them, doesn't mean I need to watch them.

    And so, while knowing in my mind what episodes I like and dislike is convenient...having it all would be important because it archives it all for never know when you may need to introduce someone else to the show, and it's pretty arrogant to show the series through your personal preferences.

    Not to mention, it's ALWAYS fun going back 5, 10 years later, and checking out those "bad" episodes...either to reaffirm it, or be pleasantly surprised by something you missed or your changing tastes.

    Case in point...The Naked Now...I see that episode as like the "TNG cast perform while wasted" is SO corny and absurd, the TOS cast would's like a blooper reel...only not.

    For pure chuckle factor, it can't be dismissed into the abyss.
  20. The2ndQuest

    The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jan 27, 2000
    I think the TOS cast DID blush on that one- there was definitely a quote from somebody (Takei? I forget) who mentioned their negative opinion of TNG during it's first season, I believe citing The Naked Now).

    And I wouldn't call such endeavors "arrogant". What's important to major plotlines can generally be determined with a fair amount of neutrailty- it's the standalone and fringe episodes where personal preference plays more of a role.

    There's certainly an appeal/audience/application for the "I suffered through this so you don't have to" approach to some things, IMO- particularly viewers who don't want to waste their time trudging through 2 seasons of weaker material just for the sake of completeness before getting to the good stuff (we'll call them "Koohii's" ;)).

    (But then, I have a natural inclination towards editing and arranging stuff, be they films/video, episode/book lists, banners, etc ;))

    I think it's only arrogrant if you're applying it to viewers who are willing to go through the whole series, because then you would be discarding their preference altogether.
  21. Koohii

    Koohii Jedi Master star 5

    May 30, 2003
    I disagree, but since I only saw the episode once or twice more than 10 years ago, I'm willing to defer. However, the "anti-time" that gets bigger the further back in time it goes makes no sense, since within the story it behaved in precisely the opposite fashion, and so it would have been impossible for Future Enterprise/Pasteur to participate in destroying it because it didn't exist anymore. That should have been spotted by anyone over the age of 10 reading the script. This is not the Restraunt and the End of the Universe, where 6 impossible things are done before breakfast.
  22. The2ndQuest

    The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jan 27, 2000
    I agree- that is a continuity error in the execution (though I suppose, as a possible retcon/technobabble excuse, it could be explained that the anti-time effect doesn't begin until the anomaly has formed to a certain point, thus it's initial formation creates an expansion that the future crew can witness, before it begins to go back in time- but then even that has it's problems).
  23. Koohii

    Koohii Jedi Master star 5

    May 30, 2003
    It's a hiddeous flaw in execution, and totally destroys the plot point.
    I have an easier time believing that paracites live in our blood and give us the ability to perform super-human feats of physical and mental accuity, as well as martial prowess. That lame idea has a lot more credibility.
  24. The2ndQuest

    The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jan 27, 2000
    Might as well post this in this thread, I figure:

    I'm gonna guess this will be the G or H (then again, if the J is in the far future, G seems most plausible so there'd be more than 1 letter to fill in that span of time), as I would assume they'd save F for films/TV, should they ever return to the Prime Universe.
  25. Koohii

    Koohii Jedi Master star 5

    May 30, 2003
    There are some interesting designs on youtube of people's -G concepts.

    But, um, why are they designing a new ship? Is there a new TV show in the works? Are they starting a post-nextgen series?

    Why not get George Takei to make the Excelsior chronicles: you can bring in Tuvok because of the voyager episode, and give both actors' careers a major boost. Koenig could even make a guest appearance.