The Rewatch 157: Reunion

Series: Star Trek: TNG
Episode: 4.07 Reunion (11/05/1990)
Rating: 4/5
Redshirt Status: 0/0/33

Notable Guest Stars:

Suzie Plakson (K’Ehleyr) – Plakson has appeared before on TNG as a vulcan medical officer and once before as K’Ehleyr. She’ll return as Lady Q for Voyager.
Robert O’Reilly (Gowron)- 
He is an award winning director of theatre and will appear as Gowron for several years on TNG, DS9 and Star Trek: Klingon video game.
Patrick Masset (Duras)-
He is better known for his writing and production credits.  He did appear in the series Friday Night Lights, which he wrote and produced as well. More recently he produced The Black List.
Charles Cooper (K’mpec) –
Cooper returns as K’mpec for his second appearance but he also appeared in The Final Frontier as General Korrd.
Jon Paul Steuer (Alexander) –
The actor playing Alexander would be changed over the years, but Steuer got to create the role.  He was also known for his roles on Grace Under Fire and Little Giants.  However, he unfortunately died in 2018 at 33.
Basil Wallace(Klingon Guard) –
He gets a special mention for being in West Wing, though I honestly don’t recall his character. 

Review:

Continue reading “The Rewatch 157: Reunion”

The Rewatch 154: Suddenly Human

Series: Star Trek: TNG
Episode: 4.04 Suddenly Human (10/15/1990)
Rating: 3/5
Redshirt Status: 0/0/33

Notable Guest Stars:

Chad Allen (Jono/Jerimiah Rossa) – You may recognize Chad Allen as Matthew, Dr. Quinn’s adopted son in the show of the same name. He is an activist for LBGT+ causes and currently works as a clinical Psychologist.
Sherman Howard (Endar) – Howard would return in several Star Trek series.  He has also done a lot of voice work and guest spots across Television.  Most recently he appeared in The Code as General Geiger. He also from 1989-1992 held the role of Lex Luthor for Superboy.

Review:

Continue reading “The Rewatch 154: Suddenly Human”

The Rewatch 153: Brothers

Series: Star Trek: TNG
Episode: 4.03 Brothers
Rating: 5/5
Redshirt Status: 0/0/33

Notable Guest Stars:

James Lashly (Ensign Kopf) – Lashly would appear as various characters on Deep Space Nine

Review:

Once again we are dealing with family – in this case Commander Data’s.  The Bplot is that the Potts brothers have gotten in trouble after a prank went too far and now the youngest is in seclusion because of a parasite.  Although why would they have such an infectious plant just handing around the common areas of the ship, I don’t know.  But Alas, poor baby Potts has a parasite that only a Starbase can take care of.

Of course, Data’s family is not noted for their timing.  Data’s homing beacon is activated, and he takes the ship on a joy ride to visit his ‘father’ Dr. Noonien Soong.  Dr. Soong, long believed dead, is actually alive and well, maybe not well but he’s got some stuff to do. 

Side note: This episode is perfect for reaction pics/gifs.  Picard’s “I’m done with this” face was perfect.

Soong has brought Data to his lab because he is dying and his last wish is to give Data the chip that will allow him to process emotional input, something he failed at when it came to Lore.  Who, as it turns out, also has a homing beacon and has arrived at Soong’s lab.  Soong is surprised, thinking Lore to be stuck on a shelf still.  Lore, as usual, is upset. 

I feel this episode allowed Brent Spiner a lot of leeway as in how he could act.  We have Data, who is emotionally disconnected (I still hold the belief he can hold some emotion), Lore who is emotionally unstable and prone to anger and Soong whose dying and has his two mechanical sons* to deal with.  Technically I imagine was difficult to film since the actor had to basically act with nothing and then switch parts.  They would have had to do some editing later to meld the scenes together.  I think that’s why a lot of scenes have the three sitting apart enough from each other they won’t be in the same scene.  They could use a stunt double for the back of heads, or arms, but there were a few scenes where the characters interacted on screen.

I’m giving this a 5/5 because I think everyone did an excellent job, even Rick Bergman who I’m a little iffy on his production choices.

Interesting Notes:

  • Written by Rick Berman
  • Directed by Rob Bowman (his final episode)
  • From what I have read on Picard, Soong had a biological son as well.  All Soongs, of course, are played by Brent Spiner.  Some very consistent genes in that family.  Except for Juliana (Soong) Tainer who is, in fact, not Brent Spiner.
  • The ditty that Lore sings is Abdul Abulbul Amir.  I found a full version sung by Frank Crumit (1927)

Pros:

  • Definitely an acting showcase for Brent Spiner
  • Shows more of the activities on the ship then just the bridge.  Now we know they have a arcade area.

Cons:

  • It seems at the end they are pushing Data to try to forgive Lore because he’s Data’s brother, but honestly the guy has done more then a bad prank. 
  • I find it questionable that two children would be left onboard the starship while their parents are on sabattical.  Especially where there is no evidence of guardianship.

Screencap via CygnusX1.net

National “Love Your Pet” Day

I don’t really think loving your pet deserves its own day, but according to the google search on what national/international days/month this is, JAnuary 20th came up as  Love your Pet day.

So I’ll talk about my Pet.  Who I’ve shown before.

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This is Max.  Max is a four year old cat.  We believe he is partially Maine Coon because he seems to have quite a few of their characteristics.  He’s a very friendly cat, likes to hang around humans, particularly ones who are a little older and will let him cuddle without trying to make him play with them as the younger set do.

He likes to sleep next to computer uses, putting his paws around their arms (as you can see above) as if to keep them from leaving.  He also sucks his thumb at times and purrs realllly loudly.

We got Max after another family found he didn’t quite fit in with their other animals who weren’t so fond of Max.  We agreed to take in what we told was a kitten.  Max was about six months old at the time, and we had assumptions.

Max was a big kitty.  He looked like a fully grown cat at six months so we had to get new things, because all of the litter pans and stuff were for small kittens. Now he’s about 12 lbs, so he’s still a hefty cat.  He could probably sit on my sister’s cat and we’d never know.  He’s still really friendly, and cries when he doesn’t hear human voices or see us.  We end up leaving the TV on when we are away just to keep him company.

He’s seriously one of the most cuddly cats I’ve ever met.  He is actually sitting next to me as I type, one paw on the laptop, purring away, sucking on his paw.

 

Ancestry & Tradition

As an American it is difficult to find oneself connected to any particular tradition.  I know some of my friends who have parents or grandparents who are recent immigrants have a stronger connection to their past then I do.  My family has been here for awhile.  And there are so many groups of people mixed in there its hard to really connect to any of them.

My last name is German. However, the most recent member of my family to not live in the US was actually Greek, so does that make me more German or Greek?  And do I actually have any traditions or family recipes that come from those links?

My family also contains people from Ireland, Wales, Scotland, England (yep, we have the UK down. Definitely Anglo), Poland, and apparently a French Jew although I never had that one particularly explained.

I suppose when I think about it, I identify as “American” first  (for that is what I am) and if I have to go into something connecting my family history I go for German-Irish.   There is alot of Irish in my family, but that is not unusual for someone living in the US.  And like I said, my last name is German.

The tradition my family has of eating pork and sauerkraut for New Years is believed to be a German tradition, so I suppose there is that.  Although apparently in the US it seems to be more of a Pennsylvanian tradition then one held country wide.

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Sausage, Sauerkraut, and Potatoes. Source: pixabay

Sometimes I feel odd, not having that connection any tradition or what feels like culture.  I know that there are probably many things I do that are uniquely American in nature, and someone from another country might observe that as my ‘culture’.  But sometimes I just feel like I should be more knowledgeable about the places my family came from.

Although I once read on a website that my family comes from a part of Germany that keeps switching hands with the Danes so…maybe I’m Danish too.

 

Ethnic Identity and Me.

I’m an American, as many of you might have been able to tell.  I have a mixed ethnicity so its always been a little hard for me to identify as any particular group other then straight-out American. To make a list of the (confirmed anyway) groups I have in my family:  Irish (Scot-Irish most likely), Welsh, Scottish, English, German, and Greek.  For awhile my family thought they had found a Cherokee relative, but that seems to have been disproved and I keep hearing Poland in the mix, though I can’t seem to find out which side claimed that.  Currently my great-aunt’s research has a possible relative whose a French Jew (although whether this person is a Frenchmen who is Jewish by religion or a Jewish person who moved to France, I don’ know).

My Uncle believes that we are related to the people who guarded Constantinople (Great job, guys) and a ‘Vampire’ (If only I could unsee what I googled there).  I know my friend found our family coat of arms, so that disproves the Vampire Theory (of which I am glad)

My one friend is Irish-Italian.  Her family (especially the Italian side) are very much in touch with their ethnic heritage.  I don’t really have that same connection.  My aforementioned Uncle likes to claim he’s Greek while forgetting the rest.  My Father (his brother) likes to claim the German.  My mother’s family is primarily Irish but they don’t really celebrate in any particular Irish way.

I kind of wish I had that connection, those traditions.  Sure, my family has a set of their own (like Pork and Sauerkraut  with mash potatoes at New Years and watching the Christmas Claymation movies) but it doesn’t have that history.

I suppose since I’m mostly Irish, I should connect with that more, but I don’t.  Nor German, and I sometimes forget I’m Greek too (why couldn’t I have inherited those genes?  Would have liked not to be so pale).

My sister and I joke that we are Euro-mutts as we pretty much the UK and two other European countries.   I guess there is too much there to hold on to any particular group.   So I suppose I’ll stick to being just a plain American for now.