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  #301  
Old 01-25-2019, 07:52 PM
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Im not entirely sure how getting a piece of tooth confirmed their Rigorian(?) astronomical birthdays, although I guess that could be a huge coincidence. Especially for the Jiliac ones.
  #302  
Old 01-25-2019, 07:53 PM
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Im not entirely sure how getting a piece of tooth confirmed their Rigorian(?) astronomical birthdays, although I guess that could be a huge coincidence. Especially for the Jiliac ones.
It told them exactly how long ago they were born, that was clarified.
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Old 01-25-2019, 07:55 PM
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It told them exactly how long ago they were born, that was clarified.
Ah, I missed that.
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Old 01-25-2019, 08:17 PM
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But even that doesn't make any sense, unless the Union year is the same length as the alien year, which there's no reason for it to be.
  #305  
Old 01-25-2019, 08:20 PM
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So now that the Rigorians have contact with the Union, a culture centuries more advanced, how does that effect their own technological development? The truth about the fake star is going to come out a lot sooner than later.

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I thought replacing Alara with a very similar Xelayan seemed like kind of a weird choice. We've already established that Alara is very unusual for her race - being interested in security...
My WAG is that they replaced Alara with a Suspiciously Familiar Substitute is because they won't want to have to tweak the character dynamics and have a bunch of story arcs planned and want to minimize how much rewriting they need to do. And an least it was established in the pilot that because so for Xelayans join the military they're usually fast tracked into security positions at a young age.
  #306  
Old 01-25-2019, 08:22 PM
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But even that doesn't make any sense, unless the Union year is the same length as the alien year, which there's no reason for it to be.
I dont think they care. You were born 28 years, 6 months and 7 days ago, thereby you are a Capricorn or whatever.

You know what would have been the coolest twist ever?

That they were right. People on their world are controlled by the birth stars.
  #307  
Old 01-25-2019, 08:38 PM
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So now that the Rigorians have contact with the Union, a culture centuries more advanced, how does that effect their own technological development? The truth about the fake star is going to come out a lot sooner than later.



My WAG is that they replaced Alara with a Suspiciously Familiar Substitute is because they won't want to have to tweak the character dynamics and have a bunch of story arcs planned and want to minimize how much rewriting they need to do. And an least it was established in the pilot that because so for Xelayans join the military they're usually fast tracked into security positions at a young age.
Although Alara was "slow" for a Xelayan ...Talla is already established to possess greater intellect. Alara never would have thought of looking for the black hole. She was driven and brave and not slow in comparison to humans and many other races, but they need to show Talla being of more typical Xelayan intellectual capacity.
  #308  
Old 01-25-2019, 08:39 PM
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How would the aliens even have the technology to test off-world DNA?

DrDeth, that would have been a great twist!

Last edited by ivylass; 01-25-2019 at 08:41 PM.
  #309  
Old 01-25-2019, 08:47 PM
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I dont think they care. You were born 28 years, 6 months and 7 days ago, thereby you are a Capricorn or whatever.
Imagine the new planet has a year length of 270 days. And the Union uses 365.

Grayson and Bortus' birthday are coming up on, say, Jan 25th and 30th. Jan 25th and 30th, whatever year they're in, also coincidentally comes out to be during the month of the Jeliac. But it wouldn't have last year, or the year before that, because the new planet's year passes every 270 day, and the union every 365. The same date next year on the new planet calendar (forgot their name) would not be the same date on the union calendar.

So when they get the tooth sample, it wouldn't be "you were born 35 years ago next week" - it would be "you were born 47 years ago and 3 months ago", thereby confirming that their birth was not in the period of the Jeliac.

(this ignores the nonsense of their teeth dating technology somehow magically knowing how alien teeth will age)

So for this plot to work, it would have to be a year where the month of Jeliac just happens to overlap a certain period on the Union calendar (their birthdays), which also happened to be the same overlap by coincidence when they were born, which is simply implausible if not specifically explained.

The tooth dating, if it worked, very likely would confirm that they were not born under the jeliac.

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  #310  
Old 01-26-2019, 07:32 AM
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That mirror was placed awfully close to the planet. Ground-based telescopes would be able to easily tell that it wasn't near as far away as it should be.
I noticed that too.

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This is their world, the center of the universe. Of course the alignment of stars around their planet controls everything in the universe.
On the other hand, perhaps this is the key - these guys don't really care about what stars are or how far away they are. They just care about where they are in the sky, and that's all their instruments are focused on checking. For all we know, they believe that stars are painted on a giant sphere, millions of light years away - which would also explain why they expected everyone else in the universe to have the same constellations.

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Feels like they should've gone in another direction, but I guess they have a million "girl lifts a shuttle over her head" gags they feel the need to push forward through.
I suspect they have a lot of scripts already written with Alara; now they can substitute the new one in with minimal effort.


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Imagine the new planet has a year length of 270 days. And the Union uses 365.

Grayson and Bortus' birthday are coming up on, say, Jan 25th and 30th. Jan 25th and 30th, whatever year they're in, also coincidentally comes out to be during the month of the Jeliac. But it wouldn't have last year, or the year before that, because the new planet's year passes every 270 day, and the union every 365. The same date next year on the new planet calendar (forgot their name) would not be the same date on the union calendar.

So when they get the tooth sample, it wouldn't be "you were born 35 years ago next week" - it would be "you were born 47 years ago and 3 months ago", thereby confirming that their birth was not in the period of the Jeliac.

(this ignores the nonsense of their teeth dating technology somehow magically knowing how alien teeth will age)

So for this plot to work, it would have to be a year where the month of Jeliac just happens to overlap a certain period on the Union calendar (their birthdays), which also happened to be the same overlap by coincidence when they were born, which is simply implausible if not specifically explained.

The tooth dating, if it worked, very likely would confirm that they were not born under the jeliac.
Fanwank - they never checked Kelly and Bortus' teeth. Why should they check? These Geliac scum boasted of their degenerate nature, openly, without shame. No one who was not a Geliac would do that. A tooth test is unnecessary.

The quandary that the prisoner-parents faced was actually pretty moving.
  #311  
Old 01-26-2019, 08:14 AM
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I liked the premise but not the execution. I agree with most of the objections already posted.
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I guess I'm still stuck on Prime Directive. No reason to make contact after just a transmission. Wait until they've established faster than light travel.

...
This was one of the few things about the episode that didn't bother me. Ideally it might be better to wait until they've developed FTL, but given the current circumstances, contact after radio broadcasts may be the lesser evil.

Once a planet has made their presence known, they're going to become a target for the Krill, so they'll need protection or at least a warning.
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  #312  
Old 01-26-2019, 08:51 AM
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Wasn't one of the others who had their tooth tested a Wasanda, which is the sign of the leader? They didn't match up who was who but it would have been funny if Ed was Wasanda.
  #313  
Old 01-26-2019, 12:53 PM
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This 5th episode saved season 2, it was far and away the best of this season.

It had good themes of sci-fi like dealing with a culture whose values are totally different from your own and dealing with backwards views in less advanced societies (something we deal with here).

Also I appreciate the fact that the planetary union promotes first contact rather than prohibits it. That makes much more sense to me.

The ending involving the solar sail was kind of stupid though.

Also what was the union policy on first contact last season when Grayson was being worshipped as a god? I don't remember the details. I'll have to rewatch it.
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  #314  
Old 01-26-2019, 02:13 PM
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No, they didnt.
Member of crew imprisoned because of utterly odd laws (that somehow mirror current beliefs/behavior on present-day Earth), Captain can't simply rescue him by force, so he uses some techno-babble solution to trick the justice system of the planet in question into releasing said crew member. Pretty damn close.
  #315  
Old 01-26-2019, 04:49 PM
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Member of crew imprisoned because of utterly odd laws (that somehow mirror current beliefs/behavior on present-day Earth), Captain can't simply rescue him by force, so he uses some techno-babble solution to trick the justice system of the planet in question into releasing said crew member. Pretty damn close.
Like Kirk for Scotty on Argelius, and Picard for Wesley on Rubicon III.

Hell, that isn't reusing a plot, that's "It is now a tradition and law that we will use this plot."
  #316  
Old 01-26-2019, 07:08 PM
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Easily the worst episode of the show, in this season or last.

Aside from the fact there was almost nothing funny and there was no character development (nothing stands out about the new security officer) they just totally blew a great premise.

1. The way they got Kelly and Bortus out was the worst kind of Star Trek-style deus-ex-technotrick.

2. The scene where Ed returns to ask for his people back was awful. He's dealing with a new civilization, in a tense situation, and literally his only idea is "Your beliefs are wrong"? He had NO OTHER THINGS TO SAY? It never occurred to him to say "if you give me back my people they won't be your problem?" Never occurred to him to point out Kelly and Bortus were born on planets with different astrologies and calendars? Never occurred to him, lthough forbidden from using force, to bluff using force, or bombard an unoccupied part of the planet as a threat? Ed Mercer is supposed to be awkward but he isn't supposed to be stupid.

3. The prison camp breakout scene, where a number of guards were killed, just sat badly with me. The show's supposed to be optimistic and stuff, and those men died for nothing; Kelly and Bortus had nowhere to escape to so they were basically killing those people out of spite. They weren't Nazis, they were prison guards. That was gross and unnecessary and not in keeping with the spirit of the show.

The way the Moclan sex change episode was handled was a thousand times better.
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  #317  
Old 01-26-2019, 07:33 PM
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(going back to something much earlier in the thread)

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I don't understand the plot lines where the super intelligent robot is put in some subservient role despite showing better problem solving capabilities.

How many times did Data outsmart the entire crew on the enterprise? Yet he was 4th in command I think.
Watching ep05, I reflected on the fact that Isaac and Data probably punch under their weight when it comes to thinking of solutions to the day's problem. Because the solution often involves some cunning or "thinking outside the box", which would be out of character for them if they did it too often.

In-universe basically every advanced species should re-think whether they really are so advanced and whether they have anything to learn from the "dumb" humans who often solve problems that they could not.

Of course IRL the gaps between aliens will likely be humungous, and a primitive species would basically have nothing to contribute to an advanced species.

Last edited by Mijin; 01-26-2019 at 07:36 PM.
  #318  
Old 01-26-2019, 10:01 PM
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You know what would have been the coolest twist ever?

That they were right. People on their world are controlled by the birth stars.
I was frankly hoping for that, where the prisoners in the camp were genuinely dangerous, instead of so passive that we got prison-movie clichs. If none of them have ever tried to break out, because they honestly believe they should be there, then there were truly a ridiculous number of armed guards (and why would there be "contraband" if the prisoners don't have contact with the outside world nor are seeking it?)

Also, Kelly and Bortus sure shot a lot of guys and there didn't seem to be any repercussions from that.
  #319  
Old 01-26-2019, 10:04 PM
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Like Kirk for Scotty on Argelius, and Picard for Wesley on Rubicon III.

Hell, that isn't reusing a plot, that's "It is now a tradition and law that we will use this plot."
Sure, but going to that well twice only 10 episodes apart is just lazy.
  #320  
Old 01-27-2019, 02:27 AM
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keep in mind this is a comedy with expensive CGI. SCI FI is secondary.
I personally wouldn't mind if it was SCI FY with comedy as a secondary plot structure but it is what it is.
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Old 01-27-2019, 02:32 AM
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Why does the new security officer go after the nerd when she could (indeed, should) take out the two armed guards?

She seems kind of dumb and doesn't know when to keep quiet. I dislike her.
  #322  
Old 01-27-2019, 02:56 AM
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keep in mind this is a comedy with expensive CGI. SCI FI is secondary.
I personally wouldn't mind if it was SCI FY with comedy as a secondary plot structure but it is what it is.
But that's what I've been saying. Season one was a comedy with sci-fi elements. Season two is almost straight sci fi - much less time and effort spent on jokes.
  #323  
Old 01-27-2019, 03:06 AM
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Holy crap, Birthday Cake was awful. Not even worth writing out the full title.
  #324  
Old 01-27-2019, 03:35 AM
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keep in mind this is a comedy with expensive CGI. SCI FI is secondary.
I personally wouldn't mind if it was SCI FY with comedy as a secondary plot structure but it is what it is.


I think you may have that backwards, at least according to Seth Macfarlane. Apparently he was shooting for SciFi a la the Next Generation with some comedy thrown in. It was the network that wanted to market it as a comedy.
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Old 01-27-2019, 05:21 PM
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I think you may have that backwards, at least according to Seth Macfarlane. Apparently he was shooting for SciFi a la the Next Generation with some comedy thrown in. It was the network that wanted to market it as a comedy.
It looks to me like the network is driving the train. Nothing about the crew is remotely professional. Patrick Warburton's character was a hoot but walking onto to the ops deck out of uniform in a sweaty outfit holding a bowl of food was pure comedy. Same with the blue guy blowing his load all over Kelly. I was waiting for the punchline: once you go blue, it's all over you.
  #326  
Old 01-27-2019, 07:23 PM
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The Orville Season 2


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It looks to me like the network is driving the train. Nothing about the crew is remotely professional. Patrick Warburton's character was a hoot but walking onto to the ops deck out of uniform in a sweaty outfit holding a bowl of food was pure comedy. Same with the blue guy blowing his load all over Kelly. I was waiting for the punchline: once you go blue, it's all over you.


Good line! That blue guy was Rob Lowe, by the way.

Last edited by Biffster; 01-27-2019 at 07:23 PM.
  #327  
Old 01-27-2019, 07:42 PM
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I completely missed it was Rob Lowe. I was just impressed the network managed a a galactic money-shot in prime time.
  #328  
Old 01-28-2019, 07:43 AM
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I enjoyed the episode and do think most of the questions were answered. I think they didn't the bluff with force because that's what the Krill would do and they want to think of themselves as better than that. Further, they are contacting them just to contact them, not because there are huge reserves of dilithium (or whatever) on the planet. I do agree that the escape attempt was brutal and should have been handled differently. Showing that none of the guards died due to armor or that they were using rubber bullets of some kind, would have been nice.

I can't check this easily but I thought part of the premise of the show was that the Union lost a bunch of captains but had ships and needed them manned. So they went to the dregs? That's how Mercer ended up captain and was able to bring his friend, the screw up? To me, that explains a lot of the antics and bad decisions. Or maybe it's that Mercer and Kelly are good but the crew is sub standard? I'm probably wrong but that's in my head.

Good discussion! Thanks!
  #329  
Old 01-28-2019, 08:32 AM
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I dont think they care. You were born 28 years, 6 months and 7 days ago, thereby you are a Capricorn or whatever.
You miss the point.

Suppose Kelly is 35 Earth years old, on the day of her birthday. That means that (adjusting for leap years) she was born exactly 35 Earth revolutions ago.

But suppose that that day happened to be during the "Gelliac" astronomical sign on Regul. Unless the two planets have essentially identical revolutionary periods, her Earth "birthday" isn't going to be falling on her Regul "birthday". That is, it won't happen during Gelliac.
  #330  
Old 01-28-2019, 08:42 AM
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As for the episode, it is in keeping with the show as a whole. They have some really good set-ups to explore, but they do so in a very pedestrian way. I've said before that this show is just very, very average. It never seems to manage to do anything noteworthy with the issues it explores.

Kelly and Bortus essentially murdered several Regulians. So they are going to be executed on the spot? No trial? Seriously? Then they don't even show the extensive negotiations that would have had to be engaged in to get them back after the "star" shows up in the sky?

But I do like the fact that the lack of transporters makes it so much more dangerous when they are on alien planets. Not able to just beam them up and skedaddle.
  #331  
Old 01-28-2019, 08:52 AM
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You miss the point.

Suppose Kelly is 35 Earth years old, on the day of her birthday. That means that (adjusting for leap years) she was born exactly 35 Earth revolutions ago.

But suppose that that day happened to be during the "Gelliac" astronomical sign on Regul. Unless the two planets have essentially identical revolutionary periods, her Earth "birthday" isn't going to be falling on her Regul "birthday". That is, it won't happen during Gelliac.
Right, but they don't care. As soon as Kelly said she and Bortus had birthdays coming up, they were Giliacs in the Prefect's mind, and nothing was going to change that, and they didn't bother testing their teeth. It was just luck that Ed, Claire, & Talla's birthdates didn't line up with a Giliac period in the past, even though their next birthday wasn't going to fall in the current Giliac period.

One of the themes of the episode after all was that the Regorans use science in defiance of logic, not in support of it. If they weren't so utterly revulsed by Giliacs, they would have just released Kelly & Bortus back to Mercer, with instructions to leave and never come back.

P.S., it's "Giliac" and "Regor", as seen in the episode close captioning. And Ed, Claire and Talla were a Panaji, a Corobahn, and a Valeigh.
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Old 01-28-2019, 08:59 AM
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Oh, it looks like you're right. They weren't shown testing Grayson and Bortus. So that particular complaint isn't a plot hole necessarily.

Of course someone on the crew - maybe not the humans, but you'd think Isaac would figure it out - should've then said "wait, test the teeth on Grayson and Bortus then. That'll prove they're not Giliacs" for the reasons explained.

Last edited by SenorBeef; 01-28-2019 at 09:00 AM.
  #333  
Old 01-28-2019, 09:45 AM
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Oh, it looks like you're right. They weren't shown testing Grayson and Bortus. So that particular complaint isn't a plot hole necessarily.

Of course someone on the crew - maybe not the humans, but you'd think Isaac would figure it out - should've then said "wait, test the teeth on Grayson and Bortus then. That'll prove they're not Giliacs" for the reasons explained.
I'm comfortable believing that the Giliac hatred was so irrational, once you've been branded as one, there's no way to remove the stigma. Heck, the Regorans may not even believe other planets have different length years.
  #334  
Old 01-28-2019, 10:00 AM
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Kelly and Bortus essentially murdered several Regulians. So they are going to be executed on the spot? No trial? Seriously? Then they don't even show the extensive negotiations that would have had to be engaged in to get them back after the "star" shows up in the sky?
Depicting the negotiations would have probably been boring, but just hand-waving it, as they did, with no further explanation, was probably worse. "Hey, we have them back, and we're having their birthday party!"

I was reminded of a lot of ST:TNG episodes at that point. They'd get into an interesting situation, which didn't look like it had a simple resolution, and then it was close to the top of the hour, so it was "Wesley/Data/Geordi comes up with something > problem resolved > ahead warp factor 5, engage" in three minutes.
  #335  
Old 01-28-2019, 05:44 PM
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...I can't check this easily but I thought part of the premise of the show was that the Union lost a bunch of captains but had ships and needed them manned...
IIRC it wasn't that the Fleet lost a bunch of captains, it was that just they went through a poorly planned expansion and now that so many ships they were having trouble crewing.
  #336  
Old 01-28-2019, 06:03 PM
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IIRC it wasn't that the Fleet lost a bunch of captains, it was that just they went through a poorly planned expansion and now that so many ships they were having trouble crewing.

They don't explicitly say one way or another.
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Old 01-28-2019, 07:51 PM
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Well,the second thing after "give us our crew back or we vaporize your planet".
Scotty, execute Order 66 General Order 24 in 24 hours!
  #338  
Old 01-28-2019, 10:48 PM
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IIRC it wasn't that the Fleet lost a bunch of captains, it was that just they went through a poorly planned expansion and now that so many ships they were having trouble crewing.
And then there was the time the Union government shut down for six weeks, causing a lot of people to reconsider their career paths...oh, wait, I'm confusing that with some other event.
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Old 01-28-2019, 10:55 PM
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but they need to show Talla being of more typical Xelayan intellectual capacity.
I was so hoping that when the Regorians wanted to see a demonstration of Talla's "special" abilities, that she'd ask them to give her some hideously complex math problem and she'd just do it in her head on the spot.
  #340  
Old 01-29-2019, 12:05 AM
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I thought the Billy Joel episode was in the running for “best episode of the series” along with a couple others; then this astrology one came along and made the point moot. I consider it to be the best episode of a serialized* science fiction series since the first couple seasons of nu-BSG well over a decade ago.

So I’m shocked by how much negativity I’m seeing online, about this latest episode in particular.

*Without that caveat, it would have to get in line behind a bunch of “Black Mirror” episodes.
  #341  
Old 01-29-2019, 12:12 AM
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What about it strikes you as great sci-fi?
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Old 01-29-2019, 12:35 AM
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Originally Posted by SenorBeef View Post
What about it strikes you as great sci-fi?
Literally almost everything. There were like ten things in every minute of running time. Great premise, nearly perfect execution, clever dialogue, stellar visual effects, cool action scenes.
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Old 01-29-2019, 02:11 AM
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Sounds like a Giliac sympathizer to me... When is your birthday?
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Old 01-29-2019, 07:48 AM
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And when the Rigorians realize it was a trick, wouldn't all the people born under the sign of Gelliac again be exposed as liars and cheats, as well as violent? Ed is just assuming they won't care.
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Old 01-29-2019, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SlackerInc View Post
Literally almost everything. There were like ten things in every minute of running time. Great premise, nearly perfect execution, clever dialogue, stellar visual effects, cool action scenes.
Cool action scenes??? You mean, more examples of how "our guys" are incredibly good at fighting and the "bad guys" are completely inept at everything they try to do? It was like Legolas and orcs, or, worse, Leia and stormtroopers! How the hell is Commander Kelly Grayson a crack shot with a submachine gun that she's NEVER USED BEFORE!!??? To say nothing of her ability to pick off soldiers in a night setting with confusing shadows with a hand gun she's never fired before? And neither she nor Bortus were at any point even wounded?????

Don't you even think about stuff like this when you watch a show?
  #346  
Old 01-29-2019, 09:23 AM
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Re: escaping. Since they established that nobody knows how to escape because noone has ever even tried, I immediately thought the twist was going to be that Grayson and Bortus would organize an escape, only to find that they are all able to just walk away with little resistance. Because escape isn't something that's ever been attempted, the confused guards wouldn't be prepared for such a situation and have no idea what to do. The Orville would somehow notice the disturbance and a negotiated release would happen.

I'm starting to lose interest in this show. I liked it better the first season, when it was more like "Galaxy Quest: The Series" than "ST:TNG Part II". This episode is strike two for me. The first was Alana's sudden, miraculous recovery to save the day, when I expected it to end with her figuring out some clue due to her security training/experience that everyone else missed, in spite of being "slow" and physically handicapped.

Last edited by Jet Jaguar; 01-29-2019 at 09:24 AM.
  #347  
Old 01-29-2019, 09:57 AM
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Originally Posted by DSYoungEsq View Post
Cool action scenes??? You mean, more examples of how "our guys" are incredibly good at fighting and the "bad guys" are completely inept at everything they try to do? It was like Legolas and orcs, or, worse, Leia and stormtroopers! How the hell is Commander Kelly Grayson a crack shot with a submachine gun that she's NEVER USED BEFORE!!??? To say nothing of her ability to pick off soldiers in a night setting with confusing shadows with a hand gun she's never fired before? And neither she nor Bortus were at any point even wounded?????
Yeah, it was pretty awesome!
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Old 01-29-2019, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Jet Jaguar View Post
Re: escaping. Since they established that nobody knows how to escape because noone has ever even tried, I immediately thought the twist was going to be that Grayson and Bortus would organize an escape, only to find that they are all able to just walk away with little resistance. Because escape isn't something that's ever been attempted, the confused guards wouldn't be prepared for such a situation and have no idea what to do.

Like that football game a few years back...
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Old 01-29-2019, 10:27 AM
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Originally Posted by DSYoungEsq View Post
Cool action scenes??? You mean, more examples of how "our guys" are incredibly good at fighting and the "bad guys" are completely inept at everything they try to do? It was like Legolas and orcs, or, worse, Leia and stormtroopers! How the hell is Commander Kelly Grayson a crack shot with a submachine gun that she's NEVER USED BEFORE!!??? To say nothing of her ability to pick off soldiers in a night setting with confusing shadows with a hand gun she's never fired before? And neither she nor Bortus were at any point even wounded?????



Don't you even think about stuff like this when you watch a show?


Sounds like you’re upset that someone else enjoyed the episode.
  #350  
Old 01-29-2019, 10:58 AM
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Originally Posted by DSYoungEsq View Post
Don't you even think about stuff like this when you watch a show?
No, I honestly don't. I don't care that that Kirk couldn't have scrounged up enough sodium nitrate, sulphur, coal dust and diamonds, filtered out the ordinary dirt, found bamboo plants in the middle of the Vasquez Rocks and build a crude cannon while a sentient crocodile who walks upright lumbers around trying to throw a big rock at him. I don't even particularly care that Chuck Cunningham never came back from college and disappeared so completely that his own father forgot he ever existed.

When I watch a documentary I expect it to get its facts straight. When I watch an entertainment program, I expect to be entertained.
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