So, now that I've had a chance to do a re-watch and we are fast approaching the start of S1 Ch2, I thought it would be a good time to do a total "Vger23 Recap and Observations" post. As a big fan of the show in these early goings...here are my thoughts! 1. Episode Ratings (I think having some time to reflect and also having done a re-watch, this puts me in a much different spot to assess the episodes without the immediate emotional reaction of having just seen them. I actually FIRMLY believe that both frames of mind in doing an assessment are valid, BTW...this one just happens to be my "I've had more time to observe and think about it" mode) Ep 1 The Vulcan Hello 8/10 Ep 2 Battle at the Binary Stars 6.5/10 Ep 3 Context is for Kings 7.5/10 Ep 4 The Butcher's Knife Cares Not for the Lamb's Cry 7.5/10 Ep 5 Chose Your Pain 8.5/10 Ep 6 Lethe 9/10 Ep 7 Magic to Make the Sanest Man Go Mad 7.5/10 Ep 8 Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum 6/10 Ep 9 Into the Forrest I Go 10/10 Series Average 7.83/10 2. Positive Observations (These are the things I think the show has done really well, and hope they continue to build upon, feature more of, enhance, etc) Characters- The characters are all interesting, and I find myself tuning in every week to see more of how they grow both individually and as collective members of the team. I find Lorca and Stamets to be the most interesting, followed by Michael and Tyler. They are all relatable, realistic and growing people with complexities and back stories that don't seem like they're stamped out of a stale writer's bible. Production Design- The show's sets, costumes, props, etc are all extremely high-quality and very much to my liking. As someone whose favorite designs come from the TOS Motion Picture era, I like the combination of high-tech and retro-future they went for. Lots of people have compared the aesthetics to the Kelvin films, but I disagree... Regardless, the show looks beautiful. Individual Stories- This kind of ties in with the character stuff...but I think the individual stories are all very good. I've enjoyed each episode (see rankings above) as generally "above average" television, which is FAR more advanced than any of the other Trek series (barring TOS) fared in their first 9 episodes, where I was struggling just to stick with it. Improved Maturity- I like that DSC has evolved into a more mature and realistic portrayal of Star Trek and the people in that universe...really that is something we haven't seen since the TOS Movie era (really it was TOS as a whole). It no longer feels like a sci-fi "After School Special" with virtues and morales being speechified and thrown at the viewer...but it still has the dilemmas and repercussions being explored. Adventure and Kinetic Story Telling- Nothing about DSC has been static nor stale thus far. The stories don't have people sitting around for minutes on end discussing things in a stilted and uninteresting fashion. They don't feature the token "space battle of the week" either (VOY and ENT), which is something I found even more boring than conference meetings ("Shields at 60%!!! Evasive maneuvers! Return fire!" Ugggghhhhh) There is always something new and interesting going on with the characters or story, and even the action or battle scenes are fresh (and far more limited than detractors crying "pew pew" would have you believe). 3. Constructive Comments (Nothing is perfect, and despite being a big fan of DSC...there are some things I wish they'd do differently. Again, given the early stage we're at, there's plenty of time for this stuff to evolve) Bottle Effect- Every episode feels like it is confined to the Discovery bridge, Discovery corridors, and Discovery engineering room. It's, thus far, a VERY claustrophobic show, and it needs to get out and breathe far more. Granted, my guess is that this is a result of the large amount of S1 budget that needed to go into development...so in future seasons we're likely to see more...but still, this is the one BIGGEST criticism I have. Let's see more of the world out there. Let's get down to more planets. Big Arc- While I've appreciated the "war arc" as part of the backdrop to develop these characters and tell various stories...I find that the "Klingon War" story is not nearly as interesting as the individual episodes that the show is made up of. I guess that's to be expected, since I was adamantly opposed to a "Trek Wars story" at the beginning. But, the series has excelled in spite of that bias. It's like the parts are greater than the sum of the whole at this early stage. Klingons- A big selling point of this series was that the Klingon elements and story were going to be just as important and pivotal as the Starlet side. From my vantage point, I care very little about the Klingon story. I can't stand the subtitles, I find it difficult to follow the characters, etc. I'm actually looking forward to the fact that Kol and the Ship of the Dead are gone, and maybe we can just focus on L'Rell and Voq Expansion of Minor Characters- One of the things that made DS9 such a rich show is that there was a fantastic set of "minor" characters who helped fill out the world and make it feel real. I know that DSC has two major things that inhibit that right now on this front( one, it's only 9 episodes in and two, they're really trying to focus on intricate development of the main 4-5 leads in only 15 episodes as opposed to 26 per season), so my hope is that this is something that evolves. Show the Damn Ships- I'm not sure what else to say here...but it seems like the visual style of the show doesn't allow for a whole lot of "beauty passes" or lingering shots of the ships they've taken so much time to design and develop. I'm not saying I need 15 mins of starship porn per episode...but I could barely draw the Discovery from memory probably...and forget about any of the Klingon ships. That's a shame when they've done some beautiful work. Run Time- This is a streaming show. I can't figure out why each of the episodes seems beholden to a 45 min run time. Get it up to 60 mins or so. And hey, if they need to broadcast them on regular TV a few years from now, then broadcast edited versions etc...but give the people who are paying the premium a full hour of goodness. That would give them the opportunity to create more depth with the main characters and flesh out some secondary / supporting people potentially (Culber, Detmer, etc). Anyway, those are my thoughts and observations thus far. I'd like to see if we can get some similar thoughtful discussion without this devolving into a bunch of people who aren't fans of the show anyway simply taking potshots at the same tired, inane stuff that's been covered already several excruciating times.