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Why Fans of Classic Movies Should Like Star Trek: Voyager

11 May

I’m a firm believer that Star Trek: Voyager has something for everyone; however, everyone is not the same, of course.  For example, if I were trying to  indoctrinate cajole my Grey’s Anatomy-loving coworkers into watching my favorite show, I would entice them with a completely different set of pros.

As it stands, the following list is inspired by my blog friend Ruth, who is a delightful classic-movie blogger.  Several posts ago, I talked about Voyager’s still enjoyable bad episodes, and she commented that she’d never watched the show before.

That’s an Internet gauntlet, folks.

I’ve compiled this list to attract a certain kind of person, and I have faith in my tactics.  And, as Captain Janeway would say, I feel lucky today!

Series Overview

Let’s get a quick rundown of what’s going on in this series before I start the list rolling.  I’ll pretend anyone reading this has never watched Star Trek, so I’ll try not to be too technobabble-y.

The Premise:  It’s the 24th century, and Earth and several other planets have long ago joined together to form The United Federation of Planets.  Starfleet–a space navy, basically–serves and protects this governmental agency.

There’s some disputed regions on the fringes of the Alpha Quadrant (because they’ve divided the galaxy into quadrants and named them with Greek letters, of course), and a rebel group called the Maquis has sprung up to defend what they feel is their own land.  Officially, The Federation sees the Maquis as terrorists, but they’re all wronged idealists, mostly (and the dudes they’re fighting [the Cardassians], who are officially in The Federation, are sneaky jerks, tbh).

Captain Kathryn Janeway and her new starship Voyager have been sent out to the Badlands to go after a particularly trouble-causing Maquis ship, on which one of Janeway’s oldest friends is serving as a spy!  Quelle drama!

Before she goes, she springs a dude from jail who had been in Starfleet and then also in the Maquis to act as her guide! Quelle more drama!

Well, both the Maquis ship and Voyager get gotten by an alien who pulls them 75,000 lightyears away from Earth–all the way to the Delta Quadrant.  This dying alien is trying to figure out if anybody has similar DNA so that he will have an heir to look after this planet he’s looking after.  Spoiler alert:  Nobody does.

Meanwhile, these other aliens are trying to get at the thing that transported everybody from the Alpha Quadrant so they can use it to gain power and take over stuff.

Janeway can’t let them gain power and take over stuff because they’re meanies, so she destroys the thing, stranding her ship and the Maquis ship in the Delta Quadrant.  Quelle drama-est!

This is the first time Janeway meets Chakotay (the Maquis captain). I hope they both brushed their teeth this morning because dang.

Janeway and the Maquis captain decide to join forces to get back home, so they all take up residence on Voyager and are forced to work together.

Meanwhile, they’ve picked up a few people from the Delta Quadrant to be on their crew:  a dude who’s a trader and is supposed to be good at navigating this–to Alpha Quadrant types–uncharted space and a lady (from the planet the alien who whisked them away was guarding) who has a really weird short lifespan.

Also, meanwhile, the ship’s doctor dies in the first twenty minutes or so and is permanently replaced by the Emergency Medical Hologram.  His journey into sentience becomes a plot point in many episodes.

Also along the way they run into the Borg, a species that is not so much a species but an amalgamation of species who act as one unit, like a hive, and they basically steal other species’ bodies to use in their ultimate goal of perfection through putting together the best parts of every species and then enhancing themselves with robotics.  The Borg are weird and scary and robotic and hard to describe, and when you’re part of the Borg, you have no personality of your own and do only the will of the Collective.  Anyway, Janeway rescues a lady from the Borg, and her journey into humanity becomes a plot point in many episodes.

So, if all the sci-fi hasn’t already turned you off, let’s have a go at the list.

Honorable Mention:  Clean (with a Little Innuendo)

One thing I really love about old movies is that they’re not explicit.  If a couple is intimate, they cut to a fireplace.  If somebody’s mad, he gives a glare and bunches his hands into angry fists instead of cursing a blue streak.

And because of the cleanness, they get to have a little more fun (and be a little more creative) when they wanna be a little bit dirty.  So they say things like, “You know how to whistle, don’t ya?” instead of something yuckier.

Because Voyager aired on regular old TV instead of HBO and because we have a lady captain who is so stagy and sassy, we get cleanness, and a little bit of sassy dirtiness once in a while.

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What If the Voyager Theme Were Sung By the Andrews Sisters?

14 Apr

I kind of did this in response to Tish’s request that I write words to the Star Trek: Voyager theme (after we had watched a couple videos of other people doing the same).  And I kind of did this in response to my own barbershop kick.  And I kind of did this in response to having nothing better to do. (But really, I could’ve done a lot of things I should’ve done instead of work on this for 10 hours.)

Um… So here it is.  At 4 am.  Lol.

Damages Season 3 Recap (All Spoilers, All the Time)

16 Mar

Oh hey, Season 3.  Haven’t thought about you in a while.  And I want to start season 4 now, so…

Best outfit all season

The format of my synopses has changed. The fabulosity of Patty’s clothes has absolutely not changed.

Flashforward Mystery #1:  Patty is driving.  Some other car runs into her!  Whodunnit?

Flashforward Mystery #2:  Mysterious Hobo hangs around a dumpster.  Tom’s murdered body is found in the same dumpster!  Whodunnit?

Main Plot Line:  Patty is the court-appointed trustee of the Tobin estate.  The Tobins are big business people involved in some kind of Ponzi scheme thing, as per usual.  She must figure out how and where and when all their money went wherever it did.

Joe Tobin, alcoholic oldest son, becomes Patty’s go-to dude for a minute, but mostly to establish him as a down-to-earth character at first.  He wants to make sure he looks as if he did everything he could to help the investigation (which also includes the DA’s office, where Ellen works now).

Joe gives Patty a cell phone number, and Hobo is in possession of the cell phone.  Tom investigates and finds clothes in the dumpster belonging to a DMM.  He investigates more.  Everyone is red-herringed into believing DMM–a lady who looks SO MUCH like Emily Prentiss from Criminal Minds–was having an affair with Dad Tobin (the CEO of the Tobin company), and Tom decides to investigate this angle because why not.

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A Day in the Life of a Star Trek Director

6 Mar

Good morning, everyone.  Quiet on set, please.

No, put down that bat’leth.  We’re using it in next week’s episode, and I don’t need it getting lost among all those leola root props.

Ok, let’s look at what we’ve got on the docket today… Hmm… A scene in engineering and two on the bridge.  That means we’ve got a lot of technobabble today.  Let’s start with some vocal warm-ups.

What a to do to die today at a minute or two till two.  A thing distinctly hard to say but harder still to do.

Faster now.

Red leather yellow leather, aluminum linoleum, red leather yellow leather, aluminum linoleum.

All right.  To engineering.

I need six extras to stand around in the back.  I want stage chatter, but not too much.  You, the one in make-up already:   Look really concerned.  You, the tall one: look mad as hell.  You, the short one:  Act like a Maquis.

What do you mean what’s that supposed to mean?  Hell if I know.  I haven’t directed this before.  It’s what’s in the script.  Find your inner freedom fighter and channel it.

What?  Yeah, good idea.  Play the scene while mentally singing “Battle Hymn of the Republic.”  Nice.

All right, leads.  Find the x’s you’re supposed to stand on.

Yes.  I know there’s only one x.  Both of you stand on it.

Don’t bother with the logistics.  I want you both in the same spot.

Good scene, everybody.  Good take.  Let’s go on to the bridge.

All right.  I need four extras this time.  You with the hair: Pretend you don’t have hair.  You without the hair:  Pretend you do have hair.  Other two:  Pretend your dog just got run over, and the captain just bought you a new dog.

Ok, leads.  This is what I want you to do: Walk toward each other until your noses touch, then the one on stage left will step back half a step.  This is where I want you to play the scene.  I hope everyone brushed his or her teeth this morning.

Great scene, everybody.  Next we’ve got our other bridge scene.  The alien that comes on the viewscreen has twelve ears, and the rest of his face is a chin.  You will all act as if this is something you see every day, except you–guy with the earring–will raise an eyebrow.

Then Twelve Ears will come in off the turbolift.  Captain, I need you to sit in his lap when he sits down.

Where does he sit down?  Ha.  Yes.  Good question.  He will sit on that console, and you will sit on his knee.

No, no, no.  Don’t play the scene as though you’re in love with him.  Play it like you’re in love with everyone else and are using him to make everyone else jealous.

Yes… yes… good… good.  Touch him more.  Yes.

Great work.

Tomorrow we’ll tackle the holodeck scene, and I’ll need everyone to come in wearing bikinis.

Ok.  Who’s up for burgers?

Workforce: A Good Movie Night, But a Bad Movie (That Isn’t Even Really a Movie)

3 Mar

Apparently, bourbon makes Tish and I both pretty giggly and pretty appreciative of bad movies.

Because we were livin’ the dream watching “Workforce” the other evening when we decided to drink a little whiskey and have a Janeway Movie Night (which is what we call any two-part Star Trek: Voyager).

And then I woke up the next day with a small, inconspicuous hangover and the aching feeling that what we had watched was not very good after all.

So, without further ado, here’s a review of “Workforce,” brought to you by Rebel Yell.

First a Synopsis:

The Cylons were created by man… Hold on… What?

Our show opens with Flirty!Janeway happily working on Caprica some alien planet as some kind of engineer.  We don’t know why Janeway is so flirty, nor do we know why she seems not to know she’s a starship captain.

Then Flirty!Janeway flirts with a lame alien dude (Jaffen), and EfficiencyMonitor!Seven shows up to quell the flirting–because it’s inefficient, of course–and Flirty!Janeway pulls some faces.  And they all go off to get their weekly injections that “protect against some radiation or something” (read: keep them submissive, complacent, etc.).

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OUaT 2.9 Recap: When the Joker Ain’t the Only Fool Who’ll Do Anything for You

8 Feb

Episode 9: Playin’ with the Queen of Hearts

Fairytale Flashback:  Hook decimates some Queen’s guards.  He saves Belle from the queen’s prison.  Hook wants to know about the weapon to kill Gold.  He pimp slaps her and says,  “So pretty, so useless.”  Now that’s just mean.

Regina comes in and saves Belle from imminent death.  Is this Dynasty?!  WTF is this fabulous outfit!?

…Yes. Give me more of this.

She knows all about Hook and how he wants to kill Gold.  She explains that Belle can’t help him but she can, if he does something for her.  She tells him about the curse she’s about to do, after which Hook won’t need magic to kill Gold.  She explains that she wants to take out a hit on her mom so that Cora won’t follow her into curseland.

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OUaT 2.8 Recap: When There’s a Fire Starting in Sleeping Beauty’s Dreams

20 Jan

Episode 8:  Rolling in the Into the Deep

Present-Day Fairy Tale Land:  Hook finally gets out of the beanstalk, and Cora’s there wanting the compass.  She says she feels betrayed.  Hook says he’ll get the compass back, and they’ll go together.  She says she will complete the journey without him, and he tries to seduce her back into it.  She says:

You’ve had your chance.  Now it’s my turn to do this… the right way.

Finally!  Some BAMF lady magic!

So she can summon all the zombies with 1 heart?! I wouldn’t suggest messing around with her…

Cora goes to a secret heart chamber and gets a heart out.  She makes all the dudes she killed in the camp a couple episodes ago rise.

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OUaT 2.7 Recap: When Wolves… And Wolves

19 Jan

Episode 7: Child of the Moon

Dwarves find fairy dust in the mine.  And by fairy dust they mean diamonds…?  Blue Fairy directs Charming to lock away The Hat because they’re gonna grind that stuff up, so he better keep the hat out of the wrong hands.  Chekhov’s Magic Hat?

“Thanks for saving me from that dude. I’m on my wolf period.”

At Granny’s, a dude flirts with Red, but she isn’t in the mood, and Belle saves her from it.  Red says it’s complicated and looks at the clock ominously.

Charming and Henry talk about Henry’s nightmares (which he’s sharing with Sleeping Beauty).

King Dad Attorney comes to “congratulate” Charming on finding the fairy dust, but really he’s gonna try to run the town in an ominous fashion.  Where’s Regina to run the town?!  Girl, if you’re not in this episode, I’m boycotting this show.

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OUaT 2.6 Recap: When They Forgot More Than We’ll Ever Know about Emma Swan

18 Jan

Episode 6:  Tallahassee

Previously on Xena Damages:  That hipster from 2.1!

Present-Day Fairy Tale Land:  The OUaT Spice Girls and Hook are at the beanstalk, and Hook gives us some exposition:  Evil giants grew magic beans to plunder stuff and subsequently destroyed all the beans.  Hook again promises loyalty “to whomever gets me there first.”  Don’t you mean whoever?

He’s also got a spell thing to get up the stalk (which you can’t climb without a spell of some kind for some reason).  He has two of them because he ain’t goin’ up there alone.

Pictured L-R: The Nastiest Dude Ever; Someone Who Is Supposedly 17

Portland, 11 years ago:  Hipster Baby Emma approaches the yellow VW she currently owns and breaks into it and steals it.  That other hipster is in the back seat, except 11 years ago he wasn’t a hipster: he was a nasty-looking dude 11 years ago.  He’s totally cool with the fact that she just stole his car.  She runs a stop sign, and he gets her out of the ticket because he had actually also stolen the car.

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OUaT 2.5 Recap: When Regina Returns from a Multi-Episode Blackhole, and Boy, Are Her Arms Tired

9 Jan

Episode 5:  The Doctor

OUaT Spice Girls

The OUaT Spice Girls! Saving the Kingdom with Girl Power! Pictured L-R: Baby, Sporty, Posh, Ginger. Not Pictured: Scary (cuz she’s back in ME trying to reform)

Present-Day Fairy Tale Land:  The OUaT Spice Girls (-Scary, of course) are trekking around, and they find errbody dead at their camp site.  Hearts are ripped out, so it wasn’t ogres.  Oh no, it was Cora!  Hook is there still alive, pretending not to be Hook.  Cora Plant!

Back in ME, Charming punches Dr. Whale for sleeping with his wife.  K.  Why not just punch him because he’s a d-bag?  Meanwhile, Dr. Whale is asking a helluva lot of questions about how to get back to fairy tale land.

Elsewhere in ME, Regina goes to Jiminy Cricket for magic rehab.  She’s teary-eyed talking about her magic addiction, and I’ve missed her so.  Jiminy Cricket comments that it’s harder to stop magic than to start it.  Ain’t that the truth!

Whale waltzes into Regina’s private counseling session (doesn’t this doctor know anything about HIPAA?) wanting Regina to send him back to his land to see his dead brother.  Bum bum bum!

They get rid of Whale, and Jiminy Cricket questions Regina about how she claims she can’t send anybody back anywhere.  He doesn’t believe her, but she says she doesn’t have a lot of control over that.  She also says this pouty thing that I loled about:

I don’t care about Whale or his brother.  I brought who I wanted.

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