Great episodes with ONE moment that make you cringe

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by JonnyQuest037, Sep 17, 2017.

  1. JonnyQuest037

    JonnyQuest037 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    As a companion to my "Episodes with ONE redeeming feature" thread, let's talk about the opposite here: great or well-regarded episodes with one bit in them that just makes you cringe whenever it comes up. A clunky speech, a bad line reading by an actor, an obviously-recycled prop... That ONE little thing that keeps the episode or movie from being a perfect jewel for you.

    I'll start. I LOVE the episode "The City on the Edge of Forever." It's one of my all-time favorite episodes of Trek, but the speech that Edith Keeler gives to the folks at the mission just makes me roll my eyes whenever I hear it now:
    It's just too on-the-nose. "We're totally going to split the atom and invent spaceships and the astronauts are gonna solve all our problems, you guys!" I know Edith's supposed to have unusual insight, but come on. This sounds like she watched the opening credits and took a peek at the next week's script. I used to think COTEOF was flawless, but now I tend to agree with Rodent. I love the episode, but I could without Edith's speech.

    What are your cringeworthy moments in otherwise great episodes?
     
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  2. Tosk

    Tosk Vice Admiral Admiral

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    This isn't a strong cringe, but the last few moments of Duet always struck me as trying just a little too hard. After forty five minutes of great dialogue, we get the wet splat of characters stating plainly what (IMO) should have been left up to our reading of the text.

    "Why? He wasn't Darhe'el!"
    "He was a Cardassian! That's reason enough!"
    "No.
    [beat] It's not."

    And then a very "TV" slow pullback as everyone holds their positions until the director calls cut. DOn't get me wrong though, it doesn't really ruin anything that came before it. I just wish it stuck the landing perfectly.
     
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  3. The Old Mixer

    The Old Mixer Disavowed by the Secretary Moderator

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    I mentioned this in my 50th anniversary review in the TOS forum thread, but the part in the "Amok Time" elevator scene when Spock clumsily handwaves in that McCoy has "obviously" figured out what's going on, though we never saw a hint of this.
     
  4. Timewalker

    Timewalker Cat-lovin', Star Trekkin' Time Lady Premium Member

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    There are so many... but off the top of my head, the final TOS-based scene in "Trials and Tribble-ations" in which Sisko decides that he just has to meet Kirk. It is so damned obvious that that particular bridge scene is from "Mirror, Mirror" and they just took out Marlena Moreau and substituted Sisko in her place.

    It does make me giggle a bit, knowing that the next set of lines is Spock asking if Kirk knows "the young lady" and Kirk saying, "No, not really... she just looks like a nice, likeable girl..."
     
  5. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah, that scene was really unnecessary and ill-conceived. The obviousness aside of the footage used, it didn't make sense that Sisko would have done that. It was pure "Look at what we can do with VFX" at the expense of character and story.
     
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  6. King Daniel Beyond

    King Daniel Beyond Admiral Admiral

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    Not an episode, but this utterly takes the biscuit:
    [​IMG]
     
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  7. 1001001

    1001001 Boorish Jackass Moderator

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    Measure of a Man: it's all good, except Picard goes off the rails a little bit in his final summation.

    "You see, he's met two of your three criteria for sentience, so what if he meets the third. Consciousness in even the smallest degree. What is he then? I don't know. Do you? Do you? Do you?"
     
  8. at Quark's

    at Quark's Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    ^Agree. I had the same feeling during the last sentences of Riker's argument though: "Pinocchio has been broken, his strings have been cut". Just a tad too melodramatic for my tastes.
     
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  9. Laura Cynthia Chambers

    Laura Cynthia Chambers Commodore Commodore

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    Riker didn't go to law school. Maybe he's trying (too hadr) to emulate a character from a legal thriller.

    It shows how given the right motivation, he drops his "tough station commander"-ness and becomes just another fanboy.

    Sort of TOS's answer to the famed (I'll say it first) "Symbiosis" speech that sounds like it's lifted from a DARE curriculum?
     
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  10. MarsWeeps

    MarsWeeps Fleet Captain Premium Member

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    The ending of The Galileo Seven when everyone is on the bridge joking, laughing, hooting, hollering and having a good old time even though several shipmates were killed. I always thought that was so out of place and disrespectful.
     
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  11. ChristopherPike

    ChristopherPike Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    "Don't you think I know that?!? There was... but NOT ANY MOOOOORE!"

    While I love The Doomsday Machine, and Windom's performance, his delivery of Matt Decker's line right there, always cracks me up.
     
  12. JonnyQuest037

    JonnyQuest037 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I have no idea how TOS could "answer" another television episode made 20 years later, but sure, I guess.
    "The Changeling" is even worse. Kirk makes a joke about "my son, the doctor" after Nomad wiped out what was it, an entire star system?

    But :shrug: it was just how they made TV then, you know? End everything on a joke to reassure everyone that everything's all right again.
     
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  13. at Quark's

    at Quark's Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    In the pale moonlight, "It's a faaaaaaaaaaaaaaake".
     
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  14. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Admiral Admiral

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    This is one of the things that kills the episode for me. It's a good episode, but it falls short of being a great one precisely because they ask questions they cannot answer.

    I mean, I get the point that experimenting on Data would be immoral if he were conscious, but unfortunately the arguments put forward in the story concede that it would not be immoral if he isn't conscious.

    With that in mind, for me the follow-up makes matters even worse [http://www.chakoteya.net/NextGen/135.htm]:

    PHILLIPA: It sits there looking at me, and I don't know what it is. This case has dealt with metaphysics, with questions best left to saints and philosophers. I'm neither competent nor qualified to answer those. I've got to make a ruling [...] ​

    The boldfaced really made me cringe. She's neither competent nor qualified to rule? O RLY? Then why is she sitting as judge?!? Shouldn't she have recused herself? That sounds like grounds to appeal, and it also makes her ruling against Maddox unbelievable, in terms of the professional qualifications of the officers present. If she's not qualified, then why shouldn't she defer to the cybernetics expert? Can't she order that Maddox's research should focus on the question of determining whether Data is conscious?

    Then the episode plunks down this cringeworthy dialog, out of the blue:

    [...] We have all been dancing around the basic issue. Does Data have a soul? I don't know that he has. I don't know that I have. But I have got to give him the freedom to explore that question himself. It is the ruling of this court that Lieutenant Commander Data has the freedom to choose. ​

    We've been dancing around the issue of whether Data has a soul? SRSLY? So much for "Roddenberry's vision" of an atheistic utopian commune! My thought at this point first run was, "Did I accidentally tune the TV to CBN?"

    Like most science fiction on the subject of AI, this episode simply bit off more than it could chew, but as an additional issue it also suffers from a lack of suspense, as the outcome was a foregone conclusion.
     
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  15. MarsWeeps

    MarsWeeps Fleet Captain Premium Member

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    ^ I think it all boiled down to one thing...
    "We can't prove whether Data is a life form or not, but we have to err on the side of caution and give him the benefit of the doubt."

    But seriously, as good as this episode was, it had a lot of issues, one of the biggest is that Star Fleet does not give commissions to toasters. The fact that Data attended Star Fleet Academy, graduated and was made an officer should have put any questions about his status of a life form to rest.
     
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  16. Jayson1

    Jayson1 Rear Admiral Commodore

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    "The Drumhead" where after Admiral Simmons has a breakdown everyone in the room just leaves one after another until she is alone.

    "Yesterday's Enterprise" The end scene were we see the real Geordi come over to talk to Guinan but he is still wearing his alternate universe uniform. Once it was pointed out it's something I can help but notice every time I watch the episode.

    "Hero Worship" I know the kid is just a kid but when he tries to build his model by not putting of the pillars before trying to put on the ceiling and getting angry when it doesn't work is a real dumb moment. Nobody is that stupid. Even I know that if you build a house you don't build one wall and then try and put a whole roof on top of it.

    Jason
     
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  17. GulBahana

    GulBahana Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    The B story of Best of Both Worlds with Riker fighting with himself about turning down his own ship.
     
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  18. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I'VE TAKEN DOWN BIGGER MEN THAN YOU PICAAARRD!
     
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  19. JRTStarlight

    JRTStarlight Captain Captain

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    If it helps, you can simply consider Edith a reader of science fiction, and her hesitations as pauses while she mentally recalls and lines up what she has read and more or less parots the speculations about atomic power made by others before 1930 (1913 C.W. Leadbeater, or 1914 H.G. Wells), or even just an awareness of real scientific discoveries about the atom a decade and half earlier. I don't think she was a gifted physicist who just didn't go to college, but a goodhearted peace-loving spirit and reader of science fiction who couldn't think of anything better to do with new knowledge and discoveries than help her fellow man. What's not to love?

    It is my favorite episode of TOS, and near flawless, except, IMO, when Kirk asks "What" instead of "Who." The former just suggests he didn't hear her in the traffic, the latter that, like McCoy, he didn't know who Clark Gable was either. Yet BAM, she drew that comparison to McCoy instead of simply repeating what she said over the noise. I think it was a mistake and wonder if Kirk was supposed to ask Who but asked What instead, but the script says what. But then maybe the script on-line just shows what was said and not was supposed to be said. Anyway, though it needed to use round off error to achieve it, it is still the only TOS episode I gave a 10 out of 10. Not perfect, but close enough.

    I'm sure there are many moments that hurt many episodes, but I'd rather find ways to accept them, or listen to others who found a way. Not everything can be saved, of course.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2017
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  20. JonnyQuest037

    JonnyQuest037 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yeah, that's an issue, but for the sake of a great courtroom drama, I'll forgive it. The contrivances of the JAG officer being an old flame of Picard's (who doesn't immediately recuse herself for the conflict of interest) and her lack of staff forcing Picard and Riker into being the defense and prosecution attorneys bother me more.
    Oh God, that was SO melodramatic and cheesy. I'm sure they were trying for something like the ending of "12 Angry Men," where all the jurors turn away from the bigoted Juror #10. They came up far short of that.
    Yep, a classic blooper that you can't ever unsee.
    I think that maybe unlike McCoy, Kirk wasn't sure what a movie was.
    If you're going by http://www.chakoteya.net/StarTrek/, then yeah, they're just transcripts of the aired shows, not what was in the shooting scripts.
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2017