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Old June 22 2013, 07:57 AM   #257
Charles Phipps
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Re: TNG: The Body Electric by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

My review (which is getting old hat I'm sure)

If no one minds me methodically going through the entirety of the Star Trek Expanded Universe, one novel at a time, here's my thoughts on "TBE"

1. I am a huge Wesley Crusher fan of Sheldon Cooper (pre-rivalry) levels, so it's nice to see him in a novel. I love his role as a "space wizard" and think D_M nicely defined the powers of a Traveler so they weren't overwhelmning like a Q creatures. I also felt his personality was nicely adjusted to being cocky in a likable way (probably because he can back it up with experience now).

2. I can't say I much cared for Doctor Crusher's role, I'm sorry to say. Mostly, it just seems she was overwhelmingly negative throughout the past three books. She dislikes Picard's saving her, dislike Picard's family first-career second attitude, dislikes her son's transformation into a godlike being, and actually doesn't think of getting Rene to safety. Some of these are very interesting and I can see them in character but OUCH.

3. I'm going to come off as an enormous hypocrite given how much I loved making peace with the Borg but **** the Machines. V'ger was a child in both mentality as well as desires but these guys aren't, yet annihilate uncounted trillions of sapients for their art. They're not ignorant, they're just [insert profanity]. It's much like my disquiet about the Dominion continuing onward repressing the Delta Quadrant. I'm not sure this was a "happy" ending.

4. By contrast, Gatt turning from evil genocidal wannabe to repentant sinner felt appropriate to me. He wanted desperately to be someone special and discovered he didn't have what it took either emotionally or morally. I felt Data showing him a better way was appropriate and it felt "real."

5. I'm still a fan of V'ger having a tie-in to the Borg but I think you and Christopher have created a really good character in the Machines. I don't LIKE THEM (indeed, am disgusted by their Skynet-like brutality) but they're alien and interesting.

6. I also disagree with Data's choice at the end but thought the scene was suitably dramatic. I would have preferred Data just use some of his Noonien Soong-level abilities to figure out how to do it himself. Then again, I still believe Noonien would have emerged as Flint's superior given enough time.

What a tragedy.

7. Yay for a certain character's return.
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