It’s the end of the Quantum Realm and Asgard as we know it…

Date: February 10, 2022

Music Video of the Day:

We can, and should, totally talk about Bruno.

Interstellar News: When I started this post – it was January. Since then I’ve finished the Lord of the Rings trilogy, extended edition, that was started last week as well as Shang-Chi and Eternals… which I watched for the first time. I also haven’t watched a lick of Star Trek because life has been insanely busy and I’ve been a touch depressed. Therapy seems to work better when the weather is nicer. Anyway – here’s a double post on some Marvel movies from the re-watch.

Ant-Man and the Wasp (2018)

Ant Man and the Wasp movie poster
“Do you guys just put the word ‘Quantum’ in front of everything?”

“You can do anything. You’re the World’s Greatest Grandma.”: I love so much about this movie, just as much as I scream “convenience physics” and “because the plot demands it” all over the place. The banter between Scott and Hope is fantastic, and Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly continue to knock it out of the park. It was great to see Agent Woo again, after seeing him in WandaVision, and remembering where he got his start. I love how accepting and helpful Maggie and Jim have become, and how Scott is just part of the family now instead of being persona non grata. This is how a family should be when divorce is involved – it’s so much healthier for the kiddos.

Hannah John-Kamen in her ghost suit
“You’re not gonna reach into my chest and crush my heart, are you?”

I disliked most of the Ghost plot but did love how Michelle Pfeiffer was on screen for 10 minutes and stole the whole damn movie by fixing the problem and making sense. What guts me is Scott being stuck in the Quantum realm while the other three are dusted and realizing that Ava probably has not been helped because they were there trying to fix her. I did enjoy the two old men going at it when we first meet Bill Foster, but I hated the way it eventually wound up. Still it’s a delightful movie, especially because of Luis.

Thor: Ragnarok (2017)

Thor Ragnarok movie poster

“He’s a friend from work!”: This movie has a most excellent soundtrack, a wonderful script when it comes to dialogue between characters, and some fabulous acting by many involved. We get to find out what happened to Hulk/Banner, Thor goes through a lot of growth, and Jeff Goldblum gets to do his thing. There are some badass female characters in Hela and Valkyrie, and Korg is an absolute delight. I love the opening with Surtur, Thor playing chicken with Loki (who is impersonating Odin), and Dr. Strange. I’m disappointed but not surprised that Odin continues to be one of the worst fathers in the MCU, never learning from his mistakes, and the boys need to try to clean up his mess that really anyone of a certain age in Asgard could have told them.

Odin, Loki, Hela, Hulk, Thor, Heimdall, Valkyrie, Grandmaster (from left to right)
“Open communication was never our family’s forte.”

Hela is wonderful as the most ambitious Slytherin there ever was, and it really makes Thor look adopted when you put her next to Loki. I absolutely love everything that happens on Sakaar, even overlooking the fact that Hulk has been murdering for sport for 2 years. The look on Loki’s face when he realizes Hulk is there, as well as what happens when Thor gets tossed around like a rag doll, is absolutely priceless and delightful. Back on Asgard, the last battle scene is epic. It’s heartbreaking to see it go up in flames and then it’s even worse that Loki’s mischief caused attention from Thanos and even more of their population was wiped out for just existing. I so enjoy watching the movie, but when I actually think of all of the things that happen in the movie – it’s a damn downer. Especially when they grossly misuse Karl Urban… sigh.

TA Out!

ENT: “Desert Crossing” and “Two Days and Two Nights”

Date: January 13, 2022

Season 1, Episodes 24 and 25

Music Video of the Day:

“Concerning Hobbits”

Interstellar News: Tonight I was on another American Sci-Fi Classics Track panel where I got to babble about The Fellowship of the Ring, since it just turned 20 in December. It’s been very busy at work as a lot of students are testing positive and we need to help them participate remotely.

TL;DR: In “Desert Crossing” they’re continuing onto Risa when they decide to answer a distress call from the man himself, Clancy Brown… I mean Zobral. After fixing his ship, he thanks Archer and Tucker by trying to enlist them in their fight against their oppressors.

Tucker and Archer, lost in the desert
” A coma? That sounds nice.”

In “Two Days and Two Nights” the crew FINALLY makes it to Risa! Archer and Porthos meet a woman, who turns out to by a spy. Reed and Tucker get mugged by shapeshifters. Phlox goes into hibernation only to be pulled out to care for Mayweather, who has an allergic reaction to some alien drugs. Sato has a fling with another language nerd.

Favorite Quotes:

Archer: What about the two weeks we spent in Australia? We had a great time.

Tucker: Survival training in the outback? Drinking recycled sweat and eating snake meat? That’s your idea of a great time?

Tucker has such a way with words.

“Even if I were the warrior you thought I was, that’s not why we’re out here.”: Clancy Brown is a national treasure and he really makes this episode pop. The crew keeps putting out fires, which is eventually what the Enterprise will do regularly in the future, but this one resolves heavily on Archer and Tucker and their lack of shirts. The events of “Detained” have spread through the galaxy – but this episode shows Archer has kind of learned from his past mistakes. He realizes as much as it is a cause worth fighting for, that’s not the purpose of his mission – and he really could have fucked things up for what will eventually be. T’Pol also continues to be the only adult on the crew with wisdom beyond the others. While this may be the standard “someone told us something that wasn’t true and now we’re in the thick of things” episode, you really feel for Zobral and his crew once you learn the whole story. I also really love Clancy Brown and he deserves a Porthos for every member of his crew.

“I appreciate the offer, but it would be best to keep our relationship professional.”: This episode was jam packed with all sorts of subplots. Also, the CGI was TERRIBLE.

My LEAST favorite was Archer and Porthos with the woman who turned out to want to know all about the Cabal. While it moved the macro plot along, and she had a pupper too, it was just strange and didn’t flow really well.

Reed and Tucker in ridiculous suits, on Risa
Tucker: Well, the Vulcan database said no one leaves this club unhappy.
Reed: How would the Vulcans know? They only mate once every seven years.

My next least favorite was Reed and Tucker. They were incredibly misogynistic about finding dates for the evening and they deserved everything they got. Okay – no one deserves to be mugged – but they were practically screaming that they were desperate tourists.

My second favorite subplot is Sato. I love that another being was into her because of language and it was just adorable to see them figure out how to communicate. I also enjoyed that she was so open about their relationship and wasn’t the stereotypical damsel taken advantage of.

Phlox on the floor, mostly passed out
T’POL: There’s a medical emergency.
PHLOX: Emergency? Then call the doctor.
T’POL: You’re the doctor.

My favorite subplot was Dr. Phlox. He doesn’t need to sleep very often but he finally feels like he’ll have a few days while the crew is on leave – and Mayweather has to screw it up. Both the physical comedy and the one liners are fantastically delivered, while T’Pol is there to be his “straight man”. If I had a whole episode of Phlox just floundering from being woken up prematurely – it would be wonderful. Instead, it’s only 4 hops to the beach for Porthos… poor boy.

TA Out!

ENT: “Vox Sola” and “Fallen Hero”

Date: January 12, 2022

Season 1, Episodes 22 and 23

Music Video of the Day:

“You can tell me how you just don’t fit in, and how you’re gonna be something…”

Interstellar News: Happy 2022! Life has been completely messy and stressful and overwhelming, but I think writing will help me have something to ground me. At least, that’s the hope! I’m teaching again this semester, so please send me all your warm and healthy thoughts. Professor Zoom turned 5 yesterday, so also send him all your birthday love.

TL;DR: In “Vox Sola” there’s a first contact with the Kreetassans, a language barrier, and an organism that is far from home. Sato and Mayweather get to save the day.

Sato tries to communicate with three Kreetassans
Sato: “You eat like you mate?”
Tucker: “You sure that thing’s working?”

In “Fallen Hero” the crew is introduced to the idea of Risa and T’Pol gets to meet the rather odd (by Vulcan standards) Ambassador V’Lar. After much secrecy the mission is finally revealed and the Enterprise crew helps V’Lar.

Favorite Quotes:

T’Pol: On Vulcan, we mate only once every seven years.

Tucker: That’s a hell of a dry spell.

Oh, Florida Man. You never fail me with your words.

Captain’s Orders: “If you’ve learned anything about humans, you’d know we don’t always take the most logical course of action.”

“I wouldn’t want to be taking a swim if the gravity plating went offline.”: This is another episode that shows us just how little they knew at first, and how dreadfully handy the universal translator is. The Kreetassans are offended by the crew eating in public but are satisfied by an apology that Mayweather is totally happy to give. The being that takes over some of the crew makes it look like when Frodo gets wrapped up by the spider and has an interesting side effect of their minds being linked. Too bad it’s not permanent, hehe. Porthos does his best to try to tell Archer there’s something on the ship – but no one listens, poor boy. Phlox does his doctorly duty by checking if the being is sentient and Sato does her best to communicate, trying to make up for her earlier failure. Sato and T’Pol also come to a good understanding, and I’m glad they finally had this conversation. Overall, it’s 6 “good bois” for Porthos.

Ambassador V'Lar offering to shake hands with Archer while Tucker looks on, stunned
“Commander Tucker, I understood that on your world it is considered bad manners to ask a lady her age.”

“Rule number one, you’ve got to be seen to get noticed. And I plan on getting noticed.”: This was actually a good and interesting bit of Vulcan intrigue. I love that T’Pol basically asks if the boys need sex, but clearly not from her, and that it’s the Vulcans that point out Risa as a place of relaxation. I really like V’Lar, as she has taken her position as an Ambassador to heart and used it to experience things she might not have otherwise. She makes attempts at humor, she tries different foods, and she makes sure her job is the top priority… always. I love that Admiral Forrest is a bit sarcastic, I really hope he doesn’t fall into the trope of admirals who are assholes. I also genuinely enjoyed how the ship was on the struggle bus when it tried to go to warp 5. It reminded me of the sub on Down Periscope when it almost burst. I’m also curious if the rest of the crew knows what the hell is going on, as there doesn’t seem to be a ship-wide comm system yet. This episode gets 7 stuffies for Porthos to destroy (it’s Professor Zoom’s favorite pastime, when he’s not chewing on his emotional support bone that is).

TA Out!

The End of 2021

Date: December 31, 2021

Music Video of the Day:

I hate that this song is hella old now…

Interstellar News: I completely dropped the ball, no pun intended, and haven’t finished… again. To make up for it, here are adorable animal pictures. It’s what Betty White would have wanted. As I was writing this post, news of her passing hit. I absolutely lover her in The Golden Girls, Hot in Cleveland, The Proposal, Lake Placid, and almost everything she’s every done. She was a kind soul and loved animals, and I firmly believe the world would be a better place if we were all a little more like her.

Tempura looking like her usual self in the cat tower

I haven’t even written in December, and for that I am eternally sorry.

Jazz looking incredibly adorable with all of his whiskers

2020 and 2021 have been two incredibly difficult years, when I thought things just couldn’t get worse from 2019 when I lost my Mom. Between the apocalypse that never ends and work that keeps getting more intense, I thought Star Trek and Marvel would be my escape. I’ve at least started on Season 2 of Enterprise and we’ve finished the Marvel marathon. Technically we still have Shang Chi and The Eternals – but since I’ve never seen them I’m calling the marathon “finished” in 2021. I’ll write up the others eventually, but I also watched all of the other Spider-Men movies (1, 2, 3, Amazing 1, Amazing 2, and Spider-verse) along with the canon MCU ones. We finished all of the Star Wars movies, the Ocean’s trilogy, and probably a ton of other stuff I can’t remember.

Here is Thor laying ON TOP of Loki, even though there are plenty of other seats in the house.

Work has been incredibly difficult and this year was loooooong. I could swear Biden was almost halfway through his term when I realized he just was inaugurated in 2021. The boat thing happened and so did a million other things. I’ve been vaccinated twice – once with J&J and once with a Moderna booster. They were both incredibly difficult things for me to do and I’m so done with people who both won’t get vaccinated (not can’t, just won’t) and who still refuse to mask, stay home when sick, wash their hands, etc.

Professor Zoom at his most adorable, looking at the camera

I will close out this year like I did the year before – wash your hands, be kind, live long and prosper, be excellent to each other, and may the Force be with us always.

TA Out!

ENT: “Detained”

Date: November 21, 2021

Season 1, Episode 21

Music Video of the Day:

Time to make the world a better place / Why must we hate one another? / Well, no matter what we gotta live together…

Interstellar News: Today was lots of laundry and some grocery shopping to capitalize on some excellent deals. I’m a bit of a coupon queen. Anyway, I watched two episodes of Enterprise today – I’m actually on Season 2 already… just a bit behind with the writing. I was also avoiding writing up this episode because it features Dean Stockwell (oh, Al) who recently passed away. Anyway, away we go…

TL;DR: Archer and Mayweather are detained by Tandarians, along with several Suliban, while they await the formality of a trial. Two things become clear: Colonel Grat wants answers from Archer about the Cabal and not all Suliban are part of the Cabal. Archer likens the Suliban imprisonment to that of Japanese internment campus during World War II. Enterprise comes to rescue Archer and Mayweather – and Archer decides to free the Suliban so they can live in freedom.

Favorite Quote:

T’Pol: I thought you decided not to interfere with other cultures.

Archer: In this case, I’m making an exception.

Captain’s prerogative? Must be nice to not have a prime directive…

“I know, I know. It’s a big problem with me. I’m just too damn curious.”: This episode advances the plot of the “temporal cold war” and Cabal stuff, shows Reed all made up as a Suliban (thanks to Phlox), and shows us why the prime directive is so needed. This is also your general run-of-the-mill racism episode. Grat is a great character. He starts off as the friend and the “I’m so sorry, it’s above my pay grade” and then slowly morphs into the man who has run out of patience and needs information now. The events of “Broken Bow” and “Cold Front” are known to Grat and his people while T’Pol and Tucker have to work together on a strategy for diplomatic relations AND saving their people.

Grat points a gun at Archer
I haven’t been here very long but I seem to know these people a hell of a lot better than you do.

I liked some of the pieces of this episode. Every time Archer and Grat were in the room together, my Quantum Leap heart was so happy. Mayweather and Archer both took beatings for the team, and Mayweather was NOT used as the token black guy – there was more of a focus on the similarities of Japanese internment than there was how Black folks are treated in the U.S. Archer, however, makes a decision only three seconds after meeting the non-Cabal Suliban without knowing anything else. Maybe it was unjust and maybe it sucked, but it was totally not his decision to make. I get he had to make it for things to happen later on, but that’s setting a bad precedent and it’s too much power for a starship captain to have. Porthos give this episode 4 sad “awooooos” and also wants you to listen to the lyrics of the song posted above – it’s sadly still needed.

TA Out!