A Semi-Hater Revisits Voyager

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Voyager' started by TheGodBen, Feb 9, 2009.

  1. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    In the Flesh (0)

    You have to wonder sometimes if the Voyager writers set out to ruin their enemies. I imagine the break meeting for this episode went like this:

    Braga: Now that I'm in charge I plan to ruin the Borg, but I think we should do another test-run by ruining 8472 because our previous attempt to ruin the Hirogen with that nazi episode didn't work, too many people enjoyed it.
    Menosky: You're so wise, Brannon. I wish we could take a bath together.
    Braga: Maybe later. Ken, do you have any ideas?
    Biller: Um... we could send Chakotay on a date with a sexy 8472.
    Braga (drinking Guinness): Brilliant!
    Fuller: Guys, I think this is a really bad idea.
    Menosky: How dare you question the magnificent Braga!!
    Fuller: But...
    Menoksy: Quiet, you! *slaps Fuller*
    Braga: Thanks Joe, you're my BFF.
    Menosky: He likes me!
    Braga: Mike, do you have any ideas?
    M Taylor: Well, if you insist upon using 8472 maybe we could have them preparing to invade the Federation?
    Braga: Interesting, but can you make it more stupid?
    M Taylor: Why?
    Braga: Don't question me!
    Biller: Here's an idea; how about we have 8472 replicate Starfleet Command in the middle of the Delta Quadrant for no reason?
    Braga (drinking Guinness): Brilliant!
    M Taylor: That's retarded! You might as well make Boothby their leader.
    Braga (drinking Guinness): Brilliant!
    M Taylor: I wasn't being serious.
    Braga: Too late, we're using it.
    Menosky: This is why Rick made you the head of the writing staff Brannon, you're so clever. Can I braid your hair?
    Braga: Hang on Joe, we have to choose who will write this episode first. How about... Nick, I'll get you to write it because you haven't said anything yet.
    Sagan: Aww shit.
    Braga: It had better be. I want all you guys writing complete crap so that I look better in comparison, and one day all the Trek fans shall adore me and make me into their new king! It should be sweet.
    Fuller (mumbling): Asshole.
    Braga: Now if you gentlemen will please excuse me, I'm off to screw Jeri Ryan for a bit. Come along Joe, you can watch.
    Menosky: Yay!!


    And that's my review for In the Flesh. :) Don't watch it. Don't ever watch it.
     
  2. startrekwatcher

    startrekwatcher Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    In the Flesh gets 2 stars from me.

    This is one of those episodes that has a good message and a semi-decent story idea but doesn't work because of the antagonist that was chosen. It was all wrong to have chosen Species 8472. They were depicted as a truly alien lifeform who saw any other lifeform as weak. They were vicious and brutal. Now we have them looking like humans and using human vernacular. It just doesn't work. It is forced and contrived in the worst possible way. I thought the idea would have worked better on DS9 with the Founders having essentially these "red towns" as a way to prepare to infiltrate the Alpha Quadrant worlds.

    And much like Boothby's appearance in "The Fight" this was purely gratuitous. We really didn't need him spouting folksy quips. I actually didn't care for any of the 8472 characters and this episode just cemented my disinterest in Chakotay.

    Nick Sagan made his debut with VOY with this episode and would go onto work with other writers like Fuller in creating some of this season's most pedestrian offerings.
     
  3. TedShatner10

    TedShatner10 Commodore Commodore

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Then why should your opinion and GodBen's matter?!

    "Drone" is an excellent episode and a clear, obvious (****). It earned universally high praise by the majority of critics and viewers through its compelling characterization, award winning acting, the right balance between plausibility and high concept with the psuedo science, and pretty effects that make sense. Two stars is a pathetic and ill founded score to give to "Drone".

    Heroes was bottoming out so badly in the "Villains" volume, it killed my interest in the show stone dead. The last seven episodes seem a notable improvement but my interest in the show has been seriously eroded to give Heroes a chance again, even if it is slowly trying to patch things up.

    I thought Season Five of TNG was mildly weak as well, even if it had the kick ass "Renunification" two parter and "The Inner Light".

    "Juggernaut" was a superior retread of "Dreadnaught", only really cramped by its terrible hypospray gimmick. I kinda of liked "Gravity". "The Fight", "The Disease", and "Once Upon a Time" were the only genuinely terrible episodes.

    "Sub Rosa" and "Genesis", but those episodes you mentioned were wizard.

    Season Three was fun but not Earth shattering and had a silly resolution with the Space Nazis. It was trying to copy DS9's story arc style but felt slightly souless and out of place, even if it was trying hard and was entertaining in short bursts.

    And "In the Flesh" ruined complete fuck all, since you've got the gist of the episode right by comparing the Starfleet mockup by Species 8472 as a Soviet-style spy town run by a small (ISOLATED!!!) cell of infiltrators that have so effectively posed as humanoids, they're no longer true members of their original species. Species 8472 to this day have remained an undefeated force that has suffered none of the set backs suffered by the Borg and Dominion, the crew merely dealt with some of its agents on speaking terms, not fighting terms. And Star Trek is about finding peaceful resolutions first, before fighting, especially against a race who were bitchslapping the Borg Collective don't you think?

    I give "In the Flesh" a reasonable 3/5 or 7/10.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2009
  4. startrekwatcher

    startrekwatcher Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    They don't. I just enjoy reading other's opinions and sharing mine.

    Obviously four stars to you. Entertainment is subjective. Some people might like the same episode but for completely different reasons or different people might agree on one episode but disagree on another.

    Some might like an episode for the acting while another might like it for the action.
    In your opinion. I personally didn't see award winning acting or compelling characterization. I wouldn't give it 2 stars-that is more fitting of a loser episode which "Drone" wasn't but it wasn't a classic piece of storytelling. This episode certainly didn't stand out like the real masterpieces do.
    I thought TNG season five was consistently entertaining. Did it always mean thoughtful episodes? No. But it had a nice constant stream of varied but satisfying offerings which VOY did not. Most weeks my attention was held and I walked away with very little to be disappointed in or to complain about. I wouldn't give any of VOY's episodes more than 3 stars with most receiving a mediocre 2-2.5 star score whereas TNG-5 had numerous 3.5 or 4.

    "Silicon Avatar"(3.5 stars) was more emotionally affecting than Extreme Risk(2 stars). "I Borg"(3.5 stars) was superior to Drone. "Power Play"(3 stars), "The Next Phase"(3 stars), "Conundrum"(3.5 stars), Violations(3 stars), "Disaster"(3 stars) were all better written and solidly entertaining as far as high concept sci-fi jeopardy outings compared to the drivel that was "The Fight", "Course Oblivion", "Warhead" or "Juggernaut". "Ethics"(3.5 stars) did a much better job dealing with medical ethics than "Nothing Human"(2 stars). "Hero Worship"(3 stars) is how you do a child-centered episode as opposed to "Once Upon a Time"(even "Cost of Living"'s childish holodeck program was more enjoyable than Treevus and Flotter). You also had other solid 3 star outings like "Times Arrow", "Ensign Ro". There were weaker episodes like "The Masterpiece Society" and "Cost of Living" but they weren't as unwatchable like "The Disease" or "The Fight".
    Gravity was a bore from start to finish. It was just standard formulaic VOY with a lot of atmospherics that did nothing for me and a shallow message about polluting. I don't care to see B'elanna panting and grunting for an hour and being a grouch.

    I like "Genesis". One of season seven's more entertaining episodes.

    I actually liked the Nazi cliffhanger. It ultimately took the least interesting direction it possibly could have but on its own it provided an intriguing hook for season four.
    So what if it tried copying DS9's style? It was entertaining and compelling. The writers developed an interesting mythology with lots of neat twists, great visuals, outstanding production, riveting character arcs for Archer and T'Pol and lots of excitement. Sadly, something VOY never could do over an entire season.
     
  5. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    My and everyone else's opinions matters because a reasonable number of people view this thread and read what we have to say, if people stopped reading then it would just be an angry man muttering to himself.

    I think that In the Pale Moonlight is the greatest Trek episode and one of the best episodes of television ever produced, but there are others who think it is terrible or supremely overrated. That's the way the world works.

    I suggest you rewatch Drone if you love it so much because the message of that episode is that everyone is an individual and capable of making their own decisions and coming to their own conclusions, if everybody agreed on everything then we'd be Borg. Frankly, I'm happy living in a world of such diversity where people of all opinions can come together and discuss these things in a civilized manner, I wouldn't want things any other way. :) IDIC and all that. You disagree with me? Good, now tell me why you have your opinion and don't judge me just because you disagree with me.

    Poor choice of words, there's video evidence to the contrary. ;)

    As far as I'm concerned In the Flesh was a mess of an episode on a similar level with Coda, I don't think that a single thing worked. I'm not down with making 8472 into Voyager's BFF, but if they do it in a good way (such as Janeway helping the stranded 8472 in Prey) then I'll have no problem going along with it. But Voyager just happens to find 8472 in a simulated version of SF HQ, Chakotay goes on a date with one of them and Boothby ends up being their leader? And the episode ends with 8472 Boothby giving Janeway a flower and 8472 Ellen Tigh kissing Chakotay? The words "complete inanity" come to mind. :rolleyes:
     
  6. Tomalak

    Tomalak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Surely it deserves half a point for reviving the type 1 phaser?

    But yes, it's a complete and utter shambles.
     
  7. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    But... but it has Ray Walston... :(

    The chick that played Valerie Archer plays Ellen Tigh? Eek. Now I know why everyone seems to dislike her...

    I do appreciate the idea of "appearances being deceiving" and the apparent enemy not really being the enemy, but it's been done before on Trek, heck on VGR ("Nemesis") ...and seeing a fake Earth was interesting and all, but no, not really. "In the Flesh" was better left unmade.
     
  8. Tachyon

    Tachyon Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I didn't like In The Flesh either, but the episode had somewhat promising start. Therefore, I would give it * or perhaps even *½.
     
  9. NumberSix

    NumberSix Lieutenant Red Shirt

    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Fabulous. :guffaw:
     
  10. TedShatner10

    TedShatner10 Commodore Commodore

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    "Drone" is a much better episode than "Night" and most other Voyager episodes, it is a miscarrage of review GodBen!!! You have nulled and voided this thread, nulled and voided it!!!

    And Season Five of TNG is good, but overrated. Here is how the two S5 of VOY & DS9 stack up:

    Excellent

    TNG - "The Inner Light", "Unification Pt. 1", "Cause and Effect", "The Perfect Mate", "Darmok", "Disaster", "Power Play", "The First Duty", "Ensign Ro"

    VOY - "Timeless", "Drone", "Counterpoint", "Latent Image", "Equinox Pt. 1", "Someone to Watch Over Me", "Dark Frontier Pt. 1 & 2", "Relativity"

    Good

    TNG - "I Borg", "Unification Pt. 2", "The Game", "A Matter of Time", "The Masterpiece Society", "Violations", "Conundrum", "Redemption", "Silicon Avatar", "Ethics", "The Next Phase", "Time's Arrow Pt. 1"

    VOY - "Infinite Regress", "Bride of Chaotica!", "Bliss", "In the Flesh", "Thirty Days", "11:59", "Night", "Gravity", "Juggernaught", "Nothing Human", "Think Tank"


    Mediocre

    TNG - "Imaginary Friend", "Hero Worship", "New Ground", "Cost of Living"

    VOY - "The Disease", "Extreme Risk", "Course: Oblivion", "Once Upon a Time", "Warhead"

    Poor

    TNG - "The Outcast"

    VOY - "The Fight"

    And of course you lot are completely off in regards to the pretty good (though not great) "In the Flesh", with favourable reviews from Sonneberg and Jammer, although less well received by Sluss. On the other hand Sluss did not mind "Once Upon a Time", but as this thread has clearly demonstrated 'different strokes for different folks', so I can't take people's opinions far too seriously.
     
  11. TedShatner10

    TedShatner10 Commodore Commodore

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Here is a interesting snippet from Wikipedia about "In the Flesh":

    Wikipedia

    So, "In the Flesh" seems to a marmite episode that is generally more liked than disliked, much like the rest of VOY S5. "In the Flesh" also received a score of 7.9/10 over on IMDb, out of a hundred votes.

    Oh, and "Genesis" is a shit sandwich almost as terrible as "Threshold".
     
  12. VDCNI

    VDCNI Captain Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    In the flesh was an interesting idea that didn't really come off and it essentially destroyed the mystique of Species 8472 and just made them into another run of the mill alien race. A Voyager speciality when you consider how dull they managed to make the Borg in the end.
     
  13. VDCNI

    VDCNI Captain Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Oh and thinking about it my other problem with "In The Flesh" was that I had enjoyed the first few episodes of Season 5. They had problems, particularly "Drone" since I didn't really care for the Borg character, but they were pretty solid and to me gave the impression that they were looking to try a new approach after Season 4 tailed off in quality towards the end. Then we got this episode where it felt like one of the writers had come up with the (pretty good) initial premise and then chucked Species 8472 into it because they needed a familiar alien and the Borg wouldn't have worked and they had already used the Hirogen in a similar but much more absurd high concept storyline.
     
  14. Tomalak

    Tomalak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    What's this "your opinions are wrong" stuff? They are opinions! GodBen has been clear from the start that this thread is from someone who didn't particularly enjoy Voyager, but is re-evaluating it. He's always got thoughtful comments, and explains what he doesn't like. When an episode is good, it gets all the credit it deserves.
     
  15. TedShatner10

    TedShatner10 Commodore Commodore

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    So the general opinion of the generally decent "In the Flesh" is essentially 'Species 8472 ave sum spies posing cunningly as Feds, so thta ruinz dem, hur hur hur hur!' :rolleyes:

    I much rather watch "In the Flesh" than "Unimatrix Zero", since how can you conventionally fight a race like Species 8472 with one ship, when their ships can plough through Borg Cubes and fucking planets!? No scratch that, 8472 were already "ruined" in "Scorpion" when the EMH came up with a weapon the Borg could not come up with, despite having trillions of connected individuals drawing in technology from across the Milky Way over hundreds of years.

    And why not have the faux Boothby as the spy camp's leader? He was the heart and soul of the real Starfleet Academy, a permanent fixture at the place for many decades, and well known by every ranking Starfleet officer. And Ray Walston was a great actor and I liked his guest starring role.
     
  16. TedShatner10

    TedShatner10 Commodore Commodore

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    "Drone" got all the credit it deserves, but not by him, that's for sure.

    EDIT: In fact the credibility of this thread has been seriously eroded by GodBen giving "Drone" a (**) rating, a mediocre rating comparable to dull drivel like "The Cloud" or "Twisted", and a worse score to so-so episodes like "Persistance of Vision" and the uneven "Caretaker". "Drone" is in my opinion a objectively superior episode to solid VOY episodes like "Jetrel", "Faces", "Deadlock", "Tuvix", "Distant Origin", "The Gift" and "Hope & Fear".

    It is really akin to giving DS9's "Chimera" a comparable score to such toss like "Q-Less", "Rules of Acquisition", "Badda-Bing, Badda-Bang", and "If Wishes Were Horses", for fuck's sake.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2009
  17. neogothboy74

    neogothboy74 Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Sorry I've been gone. More life stuff. Thanks to those who welcomed me back. I'm singing at my grandparents 50th anniversary party today, so I can't chat long...

    However I also prefer "Drone' to the other early Season 5 episodes. Janeway's stupor in "Night" annoyed me. BLT's out of nowhere depression in "Extreme RisK" struck me as too little too late, and just unbelievable given what came before and after it. I respected the thought behind it, but like so much of Voyager, it was the execution that messed it up. "In the Flesh" is just pure crap - though I too was in the know of Ellen Tigh's appearance.

    Another random thing that annoys me about Season 5 is that it feels like they were carbon coppying the formula for Season 4. If you look back at Season 4 and compare they have the premiere, then they have a 7of9 episode ("The Gift" vs "Drone") then a BLT episode ("Day of Honor" vs. "Extreme Risk") then a Chokotay alien of the week episode ("Nemesis" vs. "In the Flesh"). It may feel like a stretch, but when they were airing and you had to wait week to week - it was even more pronounced, and it just seemed so transparent that it still irks me. The thing I loved about Season 4 is that it felt like an improvement, that was shaky at times, but it felt like Voyager was growing into something more than the crap we got in Seasons 2 & 3. The momentum they had from Season 4 seemed to go nowhere though - it wasn't the beginning of some grand growth spurt; just a random turn in quality. And the early season copying of Season 4's episode progression was just emblematic of the show's unwillingness to go anywhere new. That might seem like an odd analysis, but it's the impression I was given at the time and it has stayed with me.

    I don't know why people seem to rave about Season 5, because for me it was a step down from Season 4 - because it didn't really seem to improve at all (where Season 4 was an improvment on the previous 2 seasons); it just kind of stayed where it was. The show never went back to being as bad as Seasons 2 or 3, but they never really had a better season than 1 or 4 in my opinion; they just treaded mediocrity, with the occasional random winner (which I was grateful for...). But on those special episodes that broke through to gold status, they could only really be enjoyed if you ignored all the other bits, which kind of defeated the purpose; at least for me.

    Though I will say that for all it's problems, Seasons 5-7 of Voyager LOOK really good. It's the content that generally sucks. No installment better demonstrates that for me than the 2 hour 'event' "Dark Frontier" which I'm sure will be covered in due course.

    Gotta run. Still loving this thread though!
     
  18. Tachyon

    Tachyon Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Season 5 > Season 4 for me. Finally the Seven of Nine background explanation episodes were over and done and we got the other crew back again. Thank goodness.
     
  19. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    My spelling is better than that. :wtf: I have two separate spell-checkers in action, the first is a dictionary plug-in for Firefox and the second is the spell-checker in the Google toolbar. I don't deny that sometimes spelling mistakes get through, and there are times when my sentence structure leaves much to be desired, but I don't feel your characterisation of me gives a fair representation of my vernacular.

    And when was that established? Let me just check my notes... hang on now... ah, here it is. It seems that Boothby was first established as a near-mythical character who mentored every famous Starfleet officer in a Voyager episode called In the Flesh. Hang on, that's the Voyager episode I just reviewed! :D

    I believe Boothby was first mentioned in TNG's Final Mission when Picard told Wesley to seek him out at the academy, and he was later mentioned in The Game when Wesley told Picard that he met him. He appeared on-screen in The First Duty when Picard went to meet him and he indicated that he knew all the members of Nova Squadron, but there was never any indication that he served as a mentor or advisor to anybody other than Picard.

    But it appears that the writers of In the Flesh wanted Boothby to be Janeway's mentor too so they concocted the notion that he was a mentor to all the great starship captains. It's a retcon, and it's a retcon that I don't buy. They took an interesting character from a great episode and they exaggerated his role to the point of absurdity.

    Fair enough, I guess I'll stop then, it's not like as if this thread is making me the crack money that I hoped it would. I guess it's back to male whoring for me. If any of your would like to avail of my new profession then feel free to send me a PM.

    So long guys, it's been fun. :techman:
     
  20. Tomalak

    Tomalak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I think Badda-Bing, Badda Bang is a better episode, so there you go. Why are you getting so angry that someone might not agree with the received wisdom about certain episodes? It doesn't mean Jammer or whoever were wrong to enjoy In the Flesh, just that I don't happen to agree. Wouldn't life be dull if we all agreed on everything?