VOY: “Body and Soul”

Date: June 11, 2021

Season 7, Episode 7

Music Video of the Day:

“Oh Virginia down the way we’ll be there in no time.”

Interstellar News: I’m super excited to be heading up to VA this weekend to spend time with a dear friend. I’m going out in the world and doing things, it’s a Christmas miracle!

TL;DR: Seven, the EMH, and Kim are attacked in the Delta Flyer by aliens that are hostile to holograms, so Seven downloads the EMH. This has the effect of the Doctor’s personality in the forefront while using Seven’s body. It’s wonderful until they separate and Seven explains she can feel everything and has been violated. She and the Doctor come to an agreement so they can all make it out alive. Back on Voyager, Tuvok is going through pon farr and Paris suggests a visit to the holodeck.

Favorite Quote:

EMH(in Seven’s body): Captain Ranek and I shared a meal aboard the Flyer. He’s really a gentleman, once you get to know him.

KIM: You had a dinner date in Seven’s body?

EMH: It wasn’t a date. It was a tactical maneuver designed to win the trust of our captors, and it worked.

You really need to hear Kim say the line, he’s so flabbergasted.
“You improvised your way through an entire cheesecake, as well as three servings of Ktarian chocolate puffs. Now I have to suffer the consequences.”

“Indulgences are what make life worth living.”: On one hand, this episode is an amazing acting exercise for Seven. On the other hand, I think they make too much light of Seven’s body being violated. In “Retrospect“, Seven thought she had been physically violated and it was a terrible episode. Here she was actually violated and there’s a happy ending, which makes me very sick. I mean there are parts of this that are good if you put aside Seven not being in control of her own body, but for me it’s very hard to put that aside. The EMH is so overwhelmed with being able to eat, drink, and do all of the things he can’t normally do that he forgets what a sacrifice Seven made in order for him to not be destroyed. The subplot of Tuvok going through pon farr is ridiculous, but it’s awesome of Paris to be a bro and not tell anyone else about it.

There are two redeeming scenes. The one where the EMH is in Seven’s body and they win Ranek over with food and at the end where Seven presents the Doctor with a compromise. As an Italian who loves food, these scenes speak to me… but that’s about all I can say nice about this episode. 2 slices of mediocre cheesecake for this one.

TA Out!

VOY: “Inside Man”

Date: June 10, 2021

Season 7, Episode 6

Music Video of the Day:

I love that the group had these four actors do this video, it’s fantastic!

Interstellar News: It’s been a hectic week and work, but I am so very much looking forward to this weekend.

TL;DR: After a missed data stream, “Reg” the hologram is sent by Starfleet to get Voyager home in three days. “Reg” is a hologram of Barclay but was intercepted by some Ferengi who want to steal Seven’s nanoprobes. Barclay manages to foil the Ferengi while Voyager manages to avoid liquidation.

Favorite Quote:

Seven of Nine: I was Borg.

Reg the hologram: Exactly. You were Borg. But you escaped, and despite incredible odds, you managed to reclaim your humanity. No one’s ever done that before. You’re famous.

Seven of Nine: Fame is irrelevant.

Reg the hologram: Maybe. But you’ve given hope to everyone who’s ever lost somebody to the Borg. You’ve inspired millions.

Seven of Nine: If you think my participation in the hoopla would be beneficial to others, then I’ll comply.

Reg trying to convince Seven she’ll be celebrated on Earth upon Voyager‘s arrival.
Troi and Barclay on the beach
“I went to her apartment. She was gone. No furniture, no forwarding address. Not even a Dear Reg letter.”

“Do you have any idea how inappropriate it is to follow your therapist on vacation?”: This episode is delightful at every turn. Voyager is sad about missing mail last month and this month seems to be a bust until “Reg” comes through. While some remain optimistic, like Kim, Paris recounts their near misses from “Hope and Fear” and “Bliss” and doesn’t get too excited. We then pan to the AQ where Barclay is having another meltdown because something didn’t work, so he tracks down Troi who is the best counselor in existence because she quickly figures out that Barclay has been “had” by his “girlfriend”. I’ll admit I didn’t suspect the Ferengi at first and I absolutely love how Barclay cons them in the end. He and Troi really do make a great problem solving team, but it’s a shame he still panics after all the work he’s done in the past. This was just such a twisty-turny episode and I found that I really enjoyed it. It shows the big problem of trying to communicate over thousands of light-years and the trust each side must have. I also love how gullible Kim is and that Parris and Torres totally get him, he’s still so green in so many ways. I give this 8 movies covered by the folks over at MST3K!

TA Out!

Loki… He’s Adopted

Date: June 8, 2021

Music Video of the Day:

Loki is trouble with a capital T!

Interstellar News: As I continue the MCU movie marathon with the husband person and our dear friends in New York, one pointed out that both of these movies have Loki as the antagonist. While I absolutely hate the notion that adopted babies are troublemakers, the way Chris Hemsworth delivers that line in Avengers is absolute gold. Tonight we watched Iron Man 3, which I’ll write about sometime later.

Thor (2011)

Thor movie poster
“This drink, I like it. Another!” *smashes cup*

“I have no plans to die today.”: This movie is wonderful in so many ways. It begins with Thor being a spoiled brat and it ends with him understanding what it means to be a hero, very much like Tony Stark was at the beginning and then end of Iron Man. The bits on Asgard introduce us to all the players while the bits on Earth provide comedy and a chance to see how the other half lives. Darcy is completely wonderful and I’m so glad I got to see more of her, with her PhD, in WandaVision. There are times where you want to feel bad for Loki, but then he does something to fuck that up. Odin, as always, saves the day but Frigga pulls her weight and I truly wish there was more of her in this movie. I will say that Thor’s transformation into the self-sacrificing kind comes quite quickly, especially when you realize he’s been alive for a reaaaaaaally long time. The action scenes are exciting, everyone trying to remove the hammer like it’s Excalibur is so much fun, and seeing Hawkeye and Agent Coulson is always a good time. While there are many good and memorable scenes, Thor bringing Selvig home drunk is one of the best. “We drank, we fought, he made his ancestors proud.”

Avengers (2012)

Avengers movie poster
“Hulk… Smash!”

“Until such a time as the world ends, we will act as though it intends to spin on.”: As I love pretty much everything about this movie, I’m just going to share all of my favorite lines and maybe put in some thoughts or analysis here and there.

  • “Sir, please put down the spear.” Fury to Loki
  • “I’m in the middle of an interrogation and this moron is giving me everything.” Black Widow to Coulson
  • “Phil? Uh, his first name is Agent.” Stark to Potts
  • “Really? They wanted me in a submerged, pressurized metal container? Oh, no. This is much worse.” Banner about the Hellicarrier

The running gag of Coulson and his “near mint” Captain America cards are wonderfully set up and done throughout the movie.

  • “I’ll need a distraction. And an eyeball.” Barton (under the influence) to Loki
  • “There are always men like you.” a wise German man
  • “There’s only one God, ma’am. And I’m pretty sure he doesn’t dress like that.” Cap to Natasha

The three-way battle between Thor, Iron Man, and Cap is wonderful for the dialogue and getting the “heroes fight amongst their selves” bit out of the way early.

  • “I understood that reference.” Cap to everyone about understanding the Wizard of Oz reference
  • “BILCHSNIPE? You know; huge, scaly, big antlers. You don’t have those?” Thor and Coulson discussing the flora and fauna of Midgard

When the Hellicarrier is attacked they all do their best to work together or mitigate the threats (like Hulk) and are separated. This makes it more powerful later when they all gather in New York and come together as a team… trusting each other, especially when Iron Man puts Cap “in charge”.

  • “So that’s what it does.” Coulson after shooting Loki
  • “Well then, son, you’ve got a condition.” Security guard to Banner after he transitions from being the Hulk
  • “That’s just a preview, this is opening night. Loki’s a full-tilt diva. He wants flowers, he wants parades, he wants a monument built in the skies with his name plastered… Son of a bitch!” Stark to Rogers, realizing where Loki is heading

I LOVE LOVE LOVE the scene where Loki tries to turn Stark against the rest of the Avengers, but he can’t because of Tony’s reactor. It brings us this fabulous line… “Well, performance issues. You know? Not uncommon.”

Then there’s the Chitauri vs. the Avengers and this fantastic scene:

“Puny God.”
  • “You and I remember Budapest very differently.” Hawkeye and Black Widow reminiscing
You can start at the beginning of the clip, but the end is my favorite.
  • “So, this all seems horrible.” Banner arriving late to the party
  • “I don’t see how that’s a party” Black Widow remarking at aliens being brought their way
  • “Captain, none of this is gonna mean a damn thing if we don’t close that portal.” Black Widow being the only smart person at the party
  • “I recognize the council has made a decision, but given that it’s a stupid ass decision, I’ve elected to ignore it.” Fury gets all the best lines
  • “What the hell? What just happened? Please tell me nobody kissed me.” Stark after waking up
  • “Superheroes? In New York? Give me a break!” Stan Lee’s cameo

I am also completely in love with the post-credits scene where they all go out for shawarma. Banner has a giant stack of plates and it’s that level of detail I just adore. 10/10 would watch again. It’s not perfect but it’s a good way to spend a Tuesday night.

TA Out!

VOY: “Critical Care”

Date: June 4, 2021

Season 7, Episode 5

Music Video of the Day:

Interstellar News: It’s another sort-of 3 day weekend for me. Making brownies and heading to the beach to celebrate a dear friend turning 40 and the husband person turning 35 tomorrow. Happy early birthday to them!

TL;DR: The EMH and his holo-emitter are kidnapped and he’s sold to a hospital. He helps the sick as much as he can, but basically stages a coup so that everyone gets medical care no matter how important they are to society. Janeway and crew search for the thief and finally track him and the EMH down.

Favorite Quote:

EMH: While I was aboard that ship, I poisoned a man.

Seven of Nine: Deliberately?

EMH: Yes. I was trying to force him to let me treat patients who were dying.

Seven of Nine: You were prepared to sacrifice an individual to benefit a collective.

EMH: No offense, Seven, but I don’t exactly aspire to Borg ideals.

Seven of Nine: You were hoping your behavior was the result of a malfunction. I’m sorry Doctor, but I must give you a clean bill of health.

Seven and the EMH discussing his latest disgnostic.

“I’m not interested in fault. I just want to know how it happened.”: This was a very interesting episode, mostly because Robert Picardo is his usual stellar self. Chellick allows the Allocator computer program to make some inhumane decisions based on resources, something that hits a lot differently after Covid made hospital resources scarce a few months ago. Dysek, Tebbis, and the others all go along with it because it’s the poor who are dying – but the EMH is able to light the fire under their asses to rebel against the system. It’s about doing what’s right and not so subtly screaming about healthcare being a right, no matter how much money you have or how you may or may not contribute to society. If you’re never given a chance, who knows what you’ll be able to accomplish?

The EMH and Dysek talk in front of Chellick
Chellick: “Are we having a problem with our newest piece of technology?”
Dysek: “Actually, he seems to be learning the system quite well.”

I love how Janeway tries tracking down Gar and when they finally find him it’s Tuvok and Neelix acting as slightly unethical Vulcan cop and super sneaky Talaxian cook turned interrogator. There’s also this HILARIOUS bit where they find Gar’s mistress and Janeway and Tuvok have to pretend to be lovers and it’s absolutely beautiful. It’s amazing Tuvok is still the security chief after all the damn breaches they have had, but it’s great to see him and Neelix finally working together and not being on each other’s nerves. Another excellent piece is Seven and the EMH’s conversation at the end. The EMH has no idea how he was able to put Chellick in harm’s way unless it was a malfunction, so what does this mean in regard to his programming, his ethics, and his artificial intelligence? I doubt they’ll follow up on this, plus this episode is not the best at including the whole crew so it’s only earning itself 8 exploding zombie cakes.

TA Out!

Sports Night: Season 2, Episodes 11, 12, and 13

Date: June 3, 2021

Season 2, Episodes 11, 12, and 13

Music Video of the Day: Happy Pride Month all!

You are always welcome to be who you are in front of me.

Interstellar News: The last few days have been crazy, but I’m so happy it’s finally Pride month! This is the month my husband, a dear friend, and a dear friend’s mother (who has become one of my moms) were all born. June is also usually a “light” month at work, but with teaching a summer class and online orientation – this year it is anything but. I am excited to get away to the beach this weekend and to visit VA next weekend. This also means it’s very unlikely I’ll post over the weekend, but I’ll be back (she says in her best Arnold voice)!

Episode 11 – “The Cut Man Cometh”

The cut man on the screen in front of the boxing ring
“Well, I hate to correct you on your own show, Casey, but there’s 52 states with Alaska and Rhode Island.”

“The fight lasted 7 seconds, Casey. We’re gonna have to go back to counting states.”: This episode is absolute bananas and I love it dearly. Everyone has boxing fever, we meet Danny’s dad, and the boys have to deal with a very awful on-air personality when the normal person is out sick. Chuck “The Cut Man” Kimmel is a man who gave himself a nickname and only responds when people use it. I love that everyone starts to scramble when the fight is over before it ever really began and that Casey pulls out some useless bit that Jeremy threw at him earlier. It’s a truly ridiculous episode that everyone should watch at least once in a while to make them laugh. I’ll end on my favorite cut-man quote, aside from the one below his picture… “I’m right here at ringside at Bally’s, where the breakfast buffet is $3.95, the slots are loose, and the showgirls are fantastic.

Episode 12 – “The Sweet Smell of Air”

23, a cologne by Michael Jordan
“Don’t tell them to go to hell. Tell them that we’re professionals and that we want to be the best at what we do. If anybody can understand that, it’ll be Michael.”

“I could make a nuclear reactor if I could get my hands on some decent plutonium.”: Michael Jordan wants to do an interview but it turns out the PR company only wants him to talk about his new cologne and not sports… so they came to Sports Night because they assumed the network was desperate enough for the ratings, but they aren’t. Casey’s going to bake bread for his son’s class, but instead he does a play-by-play of recess and interviews some of the kids like it’s a real news show. Isaac gets excited about a space squid and it’s absolutely adorable. This episode may not be all out laughs, but it’s wonderful. I wish we had gotten to see Casey do his bit at the school instead of him telling about it later. I’m glad Sports Night stuck to their journalistic principles and Sam and Dana got to be on the same page for once. There was not enough Sam Donovan in Season 2.

Episode 13 – “Dana Get Your Gun”

Dana looking at Sam holding the rifle she inherited
“You gotta learn to separate the stuff from the stuff.”

“Could you let him know that unless he’s dating Martina Hingis, we don’t mention our girlfriends on the show?”: Danny gets Kim a suite so she can have sex with a guy who will get Natalie into a club so Natalie will go clothes shopping with Casey so Casey will trade days off with Danny so he can see Tom Waits in concert. It makes sense, I promise. When Tina gets sick they call in Steve to sub for Danny, but Steve is an absolute mess. Sam and Dana flirt while Jeremy and Natalie break up.

I absolutely love all of the things Danny has to do in order to get his night off swapped, only to almost not be able to go to the concert. It’s been done on so many shows, but it totally works here because Danny is a people-pleaser who also has connections. I also enjoy Dana and Sam, because they have wonderfully awkward chemistry. Dana wants to hate Sam so much but she’s grown to like him. After last episode where they were on the same side and here where he also shows his dislike for handguns, it’s clear she’s starting to see him a new light. What I dislike about this episode is how and why Jeremy and Natalie break up. They’re both in the wrong… Jeremy is too snotty about things Natalie wants to experience and Natalie drags Jeremy around knowing he’ll be like that. They each could have done their own thing and got together later, or compromised and each done one thing the other wanted. Instead, we got this mishegos. Still, a wonderful 2/3 of an episode.

TA Out!