Category: TV


With phase one of the Marvel Cinematic Universe all wrapped up now and phase 2  on the way, we are all wondering one thing; will the MCU work with the new more SciFi and fantasy movies like Guardians of the Galaxy on the way.

Well I’m here to tell you that it just might work, brilliantly, at least if the movie studio can follow up what the animation studio has been doing. With Marvel prepping the Guardians, Antman and more for cinematic release it seems they are trying to get the characters into our heads, and more specifically TVs, first. The new Marvel animated TV universe is already here, and its great. The animated show Avengers Earths Mightiest Hero’s is now finished and did not just try, but succeeded in bringing these new characters into the minds of the masses, well the ones that watch cartoons anyway.

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First off I must say that if you have not seen this cartoon and you like Marvel characters and properties you are missing out. The show started before the movie came out last year to, I’m assuming, get the avengers team out there. While there are some characters in the shows team who are not in the movies yet, namely Antman, Wasp and Black Panther, we know that they are bringing at least Antman to the big screen which will most likely included Wasp as she is married to him.

***Spoilers for the Avengers cartoon coming up***

With the second season done they have now created an amazing universe where all the characters of Marvel coexist. In the show we not only have the Avengers from the movie ,mostly, still working together. But we also get other characters such as Spiderman, The Winter Soldier and as previously stated Black Panther as well who either will or has been  at least rumored to be showing up in future Marvel movies. Not just that but they also have tied the universe together by mentioning and showing other teams such as the Fantastic Four and the X-men as well. In the new season the biggest threat that has faced the Avengers so far has been the threat of the Kree and the Skrull, who we may get to see in a future Marvel or more likely Fantastic Four movie(Sony owns the rights the the Skrulls as they are a F4 villain). The universe they have created works amazingly on the small screen and every time they bring in a new character like Ultron, Vision or Ms Marvel, as a major super hero fan, I get giddy. Its just so amazing to see all these characters working together believably in a show. I tend to think that Marvel is using this show not only as a testing ground to bring new minor characters to the small screen to see how they work alongside the characters we know from the movies, but also to help people get to know the characters who have movies coming out before they come out.

The examples so far for this theory are the Guardians of the Galaxy and Antman. With the Guardians they brought them in for only one episode and , in a bit of a trope, they start off as villains to the Avengers until they all realize they are on the same side and explain their origin and mission to the Avengers before teaming up to take down the enemy. Not knowing much about the Guardians before this show when Marvel announced they were doing a movie about them I was skeptical. Until I saw the episode featuring them. While the idea of a raccoon and a talking tree that can regenerate itself from ,  seemingly, nothing is not one I think will work on screen, somehow they do make it work on the small screen and it gives me hope for the movie.

With Antman I had a very similar feeling of future failure for the movie. The idea of a man being able to either grow to enormous height or shrink down to almost microscopic size and ride into battle on a flying ant does not only seem unbelievable but also kind of silly. Again though they seem to have made it work in the cartoon fairly well. While i realize this is a cartoon and not the same as a movie it does give me hope for the future release of the Antman movie.

All in all I have to say if the Marvel movie team is able to take a few notes from the animated team when making these new movies then we are all set for an awesome super hero filled future. And if you haven’t seen this show yet do yourself a favor and check it out its pretty epic.

Richard
@riche_613

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Well it’s that time again: great TV viewing on Sunday Nights. I have my PVR set to record multiple shows and I will attempt to break down each as best I can.
–         Breaking Bad (AMC): Well we are down to the final episode of this great series. The last season has been nothing but epic. The last 2 episode in particular were amazing to watch. I cannot wait for the final episode. I will have to watch it a day later as I will be working…hopefully I won’t get spoiled BEFORE watching it.  Also having actor Robert Forester guest star on last Sundays episode was great. Too bad we could not have seen him sooner.
 
–         Talking Bad (AMC): Much like ‘Talking Dead’, the companion talk show to ‘The Walking Dead’, AMC has decided to do this talk show format for BB. Chris Hardwick also hosts this show. Being a huge BB fan and having Vince Gilligan, Dean Norris, Anna Gunn and the other actors on and answering some questions was awesome. Glad they are doing this show, just wished they had done it sooner.
 
 
–         Dexter (Showtime/Movie Central): Well I have to first say I enjoyed the final season, which just ended last Sunday. Did I like the final episode: NO I did not. I’ve said it before that this was a series that had a lot of potential and could have gone to some really neat places, but in the end they didn’t. I really felt the final episode and the decisions Dexter (and the writing staff) made were dumb and really not tryue to the character or the show itself. It was sad to see a show I had been following for 8 years end the way it did. (I really miss Julie Benz and John Lithgow on this show…just saying…)
–          Ray Donovan (Showtime/Movie Central): This show premiered right after the first episode of ‘Dexter’ this summer, and I was hooked right away.  It takes place in LA where Ray Donovan (played by the great Liev Schreiber), who is originally from South Boston, is a “fixer” for the powerful law firm Goldman & Drexler that represents the rich and famous. However, he experiences his own problems when his father, Mickey Donovan (played to perfection by Jon Voight), is unexpectedly released from prison. So far I loved this series and I intend to continue viewing next season.  It was a surprise hit for me. Worth checking out for sure!
 
–         Boardwalk Empire (HBO): Season 4 just started a few weeks ago and I still love this period drama about prohibition and gangsters in the 1920’s. Steve Buscemi is amazing as ‘Nucky Thompson’. Last season, especially the season finale was amazing and this series has a lot to live up to but so far so good. 
 
–         True Blood (HBO): Dropped this show after last season. Done and done.
 
–         Walking Dead (AMC) premieres October 13th!! I cannot wait. Looking forward to checking out their companion series set to debut in 2015!!
 
Other TV other Nights of the week:
 
–         Under The Dome (CBS Monday Nights): I had  been  enjoying this series in the beginning then I fell off about half way. I kept tabs on it, watched most of the episodes because my wife really liked the series but I found myself questioning why I was still watching. I never read the Stephen king novel from which it is based but I can’t help but feel it should be darker. Dean Norris (Breaking Bad) is excellent as ‘Big Jim’ on this series, but I find the supporting cast tends to fall flat. Some of the plotlines make no sense and some of the acting is terrible at best. Not to say this is a bad series, I do enjoy some aspects of it.  It has been renewed for a second season so my wife will be sticking with it, and I’ll keep tabs on it but I wish it would go darker and weirder.
 
See you next time for an update. Go break some bad!
 – Chris Lockhart (@chrisloc1701)

A look at the Amazon Zombieland TV pilot

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As some of you may know already Amazon made a TV pilot for a show based on the movie Zombieland that came out a few years ago. And I figured I’d give it a chance and let you know my thoughts on weather or not this should be put into production as a full season or whether it should be sentenced to disappear like so many pilots before.

Now this pilot has been out for a while now ,but since I am Canadian and it was only available on Amazon Instant it was rather hard to watch, but thanks to the darker side if the internet I now have.

Now the original Zombieland movie was a success because not only was it a zombie film but it was funny and had a great cast. One if the things that was unique about the film was “The List” on how to survive in Zombieland which showed up in various areas of the screen in giant letters.

The TV pilot does not have any of the same cast as the movie though and that is truly sad. If they were able to get even one or two if them to return it definitely would have helped the show a lot. So with no returning cast that leaves the shows success up to how funny it is and how well they can implement the use of “The List”.

Well I’m glad to say they did seem to pull it together on those two aspects fairly well to my surprise. While not as funny as the movie, it still has its moments and the list is put into place and used exactly like the movie and dare I say it almost better. The thing I love about this is the fact that it could be a weekly show. I would really enjoy seeing all if the different rules to surviving in a zombie infested world. The plot is basically the four character from the film finally deciding to search for survivors. How they go about finding and trying to save them is pretty damn funny and to be honest I would tune in every week for a show like this.
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In the end, while it wasn’t great, it was better than I expected and I would watch this if it were a full series. If you happen to be in the U.S or are a Amazon Instant subscriber I urge you to watch this pilot and give it a high rating as Amazon is weighing in on how the audience rates the show before going through with a full season.

Richard
Riche_613

Spoiler Warning!!!
Well it’s that time again: great TV viewing on Sunday Nights. I have my PVR set to record multiple shows and I will attempt to break down each as best I can.
–         Breaking Bad (AMC): Well we are down to the final episodes of this great series. The first episode of the final 8 premiered August 11th and it was a great one for sure. Again this season (or season 5B if you want to be technical) opens with a Walt making his way back into town, with hair, a beard, and a huge machine gun in the trunk of the car he is driving. But for some reason he goes back home to retrieve the ricin he planted in his room some seasons ago. His house is vacant, in ruins and his neighbour lady seems especially frightened of him. Again a glimpse into the not too distant future for Walt and the viewers are left wondering ‘what the hell happened’?
The final scene between Hank and Walt was nothing short of epic. I knew this series would come down to them fighting each other, and this is absolutely amazing. Both Bryan Cranston and Dean Norris deserve Emmy’s for their performances.
 
–         Talking Bad (AMC): Much like ‘Talking Dead’, the companion talk show to ‘The Walking Dead’, AMC has decided to do this talk show format for BB. Chris Hardwick also hosts this show. Being a huge BB fan and having Vince Gilligan on and answering some questions was awesome. Glad they are doing this show, just wished they had done it sooner.
 
–         Low Winter Sun (AMC): A new series from AMC starring Mark Strong (Green Lantern, Kick Ass) as a good yet dirty cop. After watching the first episode I must say so far I am impressed. I like Strong as an actor so I knew I would be checking out this series, and he really delivered in the pilot episode.  A series worth checking out I think. Stay Tuned!
 
–         Dexter (Showtime/Movie Central): This series came back almost 2 months ago already and they too are in their final season. This show has been hit or miss for me. Last season kind of fell flat for me but I decided to stick with the show and I am glad I did. So far this year has been great. I like that they seem to be tying up some loose ends and maybe gearing up to a big finale. If you had watched this series before and have yet to check out this new season I suggest you do.
 
–          Ray Donovan (Showtime/Movie Central): This show premiered right after the first episode of ‘Dexter’ this summer. It takes place in LA where Ray Donovan (played by the great Liev Schreiber), who is originally from South Boston, is a “fixer” for the powerful law firm Goldman & Drexler that represents the rich and famous. However, he experiences his own problems when his father, Mickey Donovan (played to perfection by Jon Voight), is unexpectedly released from prison. So far I am loving this series!! It was a surprise hit for me. Worth checking out for sure!
 
–         True Blood (HBO): Dropped this show after last season. Done and done.
 
Other TV other Nights of the week:
 
–         Under The Dome (CBS Monday Nights): I have been enjoying this series. I never read the Stephen king novel from which it is based but I can’t help but feel it should be darker. Dean Norris (Breaking Bad) is excellent as ‘Big Jim’ on this series, but I find the supporting cast tends to fall flat. Not to say this is a bad series, I do enjoy it and it has been renewed for a second season so I will be sticking with it, but I wish it would go darker and weirder.
–         Hell on Wheels (AMC Saturday night): This is an excellent western which is now entering it’s third season. Worth a watch and it is filmed in my home province of Alberta. Colm Meaney (Chief O’Brien from Star Trek TNG & DS9) is excellent as the bad guy for this series. The 3rd season is a great jumping on point for new viewers and the first 2 seasons are available on Netflix.
–         Orphan Black: Have not checked out this series yet but it is on my PVR. Heard nothing but good things and looking forward to watching this show.

See you next time for an update. Go break some bad!
 
Chris Lockhart
@Chrisloc1701

TV Review: The Hero

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With two kids, two jobs and a two hour daily commute I have to choose what I watch carefully. And to make things more difficult for me I haven’t had cable in a few years now so I have to find new shows either by word of mouth, seeing commercials at work or by chance online. I first heard about The Hero on Twitter. I read that The Rock was going to hosting his own reality show. As a wrestling fan and more over a pretty major Rock fan I was instantly interested.

After watching WWE Raw a few days later and seeing the end of a commercial I knew I had to check it out. So I scoured the internet and managed to find the first episode on YouTube of all places. I have to say I was not only impressed but also hooked immediately.

The shows premise is basically a giant contest to find out who is The Hero and to win up to $1,000,000. To do this the nine contestants have to participate in challenges that put their courage, bravery, and morality to the test. You see not only do they have to end our physical challenges but also mental ones as well.

So far there have been three types of challenges:

Team challenge: consists of 6 contestants
The Hero challenge: consists of one of the 6 contestants from the team challenge if they won.
Moral challenge: a secret challenge The Rock puts on one contestant that will benefit them but hold back the team.

I love the physicality of the show. People scaling down massive sky scrappers and climbing up the spires at the top. Or a scavenger hunt in one of the most chaotic cities in South America. Even navigating a cave filled with spiders in the complete dark to get to the $50,000 in cash in a backpack.

Not only are the physical parts of the show awesome but the moral challenges add a cool twist to the show. One of the first ways they do this is by allowing the winner of The Hero’s challenge ($50,000 prize) the option of either putting the money in the pot to make the grand prize for the finalist bigger, or they can keep it for them selves. Another way they can do this is get ahold of one contestant who stayed behind while the team challenge is happening and offer them $35,000. They can take the money and no one will ever know, but if they do it makes the team challenge harder.

All this sneaking around adds a level of love and hate that you will undoubtedly have towards the characters for taking or not taking the money. And to make things more interesting, the audience votes people off the show.

All in all this is a pretty cool reality show and I will definitely keep watching. I love the premise, and the challenges, plus The Rock makes a great host. If you get a chance check it out on TV or online. Its definitely an interesting show that is worth watching.

Richard
@riche_613

Spock Days 2013

Spock Days 2013: Vulcan, Alberta June 7-9

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So my wife Crystal and I made the journey down to Vulcan, Alberta to attend ‘Spock Days’ for the first time. Big “Thank you” to my wife for agreeing to go along with this trip as she is not a Trek fan at all. For those who do not know, Vulcan is a small town in rural Alberta, south of Calgary. The town is celebrating it’s 100 year anniversary this year, so their name predates the original Trek series. But Vulcan tourism came up with the brilliant marketing ploy to capitalize on their name and associate it with Star Trek. For 21 years they have had their town fair as ‘Spock Days’. Spock days is essentially a town fair and Star Trek convention rolled into one. And Vulcan is officially recognized by CBS Studios (which owns the rights to Trek) as the ‘Star Trek Capital of Canada’! Very cool, well cool if you are a Trek fan that lives in Alberta. Back in February I purchased my ‘Captains Tickets’ and I was ready to go. Star Trek: Voyager actors Robert Picardo (the Doctor) and Ethan Philips (Neelix) were there along with Trek illustrator Rick Sternbach. 
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Friday night they had a ‘Meet & Greet’ with the Admiral & Captain ticket holders at the Vulcan Legion Hall. We got to mix and mingle with the celebrity guests. Crystal and I got to meet the actors agents as they sat at our table. Rick Sternbach eventually sat beside me at our table and we had a good Trek conversation. 

I shook hand with Ethan Philips and he asked me about my Toronto Blue Jays hat. We then had a quick conversation about baseball and his fondness for the Jays. I got to shake Robert Picardo’s hand and listen to him tell stories about his acting career. He was drinking a Kokanee beer!! 

Saturday Crystal and I got to see the actors again as they were staying at our hotel in High River. When we got back to Vulcan we attended the parade which was awesome with a lot of cool parade floats and great Trek cosplay. Robert, Ethan and Rick were also part of the parade riding on convertibles. 
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Vulcan was to open their official ‘Trek Museum’, but unfortunately due to issues with CBS they were unable to open this weekend. Much to the disappointment of fans. 

At the school was the ‘Dealers room’ and photo-ops and autographs with the guests. Robert Picardo & Ethan Philips performed a funny comedic stage play prior to the dinner that evening. I also won free ‘Captains tickets’ for the 2014 ‘Spock Days’, so yes I will be returning. 

Overall ‘Spock Days’ was a great experience, I had a great time and met some great people.

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Chris with some cosplayers

Chris Lockhart
@chrisloc1701

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Hey there fellow blog reader and/or podcast listener, Chrisloc1701 here reviewing his second most anticipated film of 2013, and that is of course ‘Star Trek: Into Darkness’ (with the most anticipated being ‘Man Of Steel’). I was going to try and do a SPOILER free review but it is just impossible with this film so be warned that there will be specific spoilers after my rating. So read on if you wish or watch the film first then come back. Please be sure to leave me a comment on the blog or the Geek Fallout or Random Nerdness Facebook Pages. So here is the rating:

****1/2 (4.5 Stars Out of 5)
A great film and definitely worth going to the theatre if you are a Trek fan or a fan of action/adventure & space sci-fi. Better than the 2009 film in my opinion. 

Spoilers Review:

Well as stated in the rating I thought this film was better than the 2009 ‘Star Trek’ film. This film had it all: action, suspense, interesting story, good acting, good villains, and Zoe Saldana. There are some die hard Trek fans that hate what JJ Abrams has done with the franchise. Even with this ‘alternate timeline’ there are things that they have been done with these films that cannot be explained away by the creation of a new timeline, but I choose to not think too much and enjoy these films for what they are. What Abrams is doing does not take away from what has come before, as Trek fans we must remember that and continue to support theses  films if we are ever to see Trek return to TV. 

‘New’ Characters & Cast:
Anyway getting back to the film, I really thought it was superb. Loved having Peter Weller on as ‘Admiral Marcus’. Benedict Cumberbatch was an excellent addition to the film, however again getting back to the timeline unexplained changes, I hated the fact he was Khan after all. Ricardo Montalban IS Khan and no recasting is necessary. As much as I loved Cumberbatch in this film and all he brought to it I really wish he had been a different villain. Maybe Khan’s younger brother? Alice Eve is a welcome recast as ‘Carol Marcus’, I just wish she had had more screen time and maybe her and Kirk fall in love. Call me a romantic but I would have loved if they had a love story for those two in this movie. 

‘Old’ Characters & Cast:
Welcome back Leonard Nimoy. Loved his brief cameo in the film and to know that old Spock is still alive and ticking, just wished he had made a ‘William Bell’ cameo on the 5th Season of ‘Fringe’… All the actors were once again excellent in their roles. I really wished Bruce Greenwood hadn’t been killed off so soon. I would loved to have seen him make the death sacrifice to save the ship instead of Kirk. Christopher Pike deserved to go out as a hero. Also would have been good to see Kirk learn a thing or two more about command from his Father figure before he died. Not enough Karl Urban in this film!! He is perhaps the best casting of these films and he was totally under used in this film. Also wanted to thank Mr JJ Abrams for putting Zoe Saldana in several skin tight uniforms in this film, WOW she is HOT!!! 

Nit Picks:
 – I HATE all of Abrams unnecessary lens flares. I know people have joked around about Abrams use of them, but in this film I really noticed them and they really started to annoy me. I know they are intended to bring a sense of realism to the movie experience but I already know I am watching a make believe film, I do not need lens flares to fool me into thinking this is real. 

– The Klingons: Again the change to the timeline by Nero and Old Spock in the 2009 film would not explain why the klingons and their homeworld would look so different. I love their use of helmets but I hated their new look. They looked like a Klingon alien cousin or something. The look sucks and there was nothing wrong with the traditional Trek look to the Klingons. A very unnecessary change on Abrams part. 

Overall it was a great film with a few minor nitpicks. Go see this film! Next up on my list is ‘Man Of Steel’ in June, with a review to follow. 
Live Long & Lens Flares!!

Chris Lockhart
@chrisloc1701

Letter to William Shatner

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Recently on Facebook the great William Shatner posted the following:
 
William Shatner
Friends,

I’m looking for true stories on how watching Star Trek (any series) affected your career decisions later in life. Did you go into a career in Science or Aviation or even become an Astronaut due to Star Trek and Science Fiction?

I want to hear your story. Please send me an email of your story on what about Star Trek made you choose your career path. Send a email with your story in the body of the email to: ShatnerScifi@gm ­ail.com

My best, Bill
 
 So I took up the challenge and wrote one of my heroes in life to discuss my career path and how ‘Star Trek’ fits into it:
 
Attention Mr William Shatner:
 
First off allow me to say it is an extreme Honor to be writing you Mr Shatner. With me being a ‘Star Trek’ & ‘Boston Legal’ fan and a Canadian, you are one of my heroes. I had a chance to meet you at the Calgary Expo in 2011 at it was a thrill of a lifetime.
 
Anyway when I graduated high school I was unsure what I wanted to do with my life. I worked for 9 years in the lumber industry but was never really happy with what I was doing for a living. So I did some brainstorming one night and thought about some of the careers paths I admired throughout my life, then I got thinking about ‘Star Trek’. I always loved the characters of Trek, but the ones whose jobs I enjoyed to watch on screen where those of the Engineers. Scotty and Geordi where two characters whose jobs I would want to do if I were on the starship Enterprise. Knowing how the Enterprise really works, being able to fix the problems with the ship when needed, using your mind and hands to save the day really appealed to me. Of course this is fiction and Engineers like Scotty do not exist…but they do.
 
I never really paid much attention to my Dad’s career path. I knew he had a ‘Steam Ticket’ and worked with large rotary kilns which were used to destroy hazardous industrial waste in Alberta, but my Dad never really talked about work with me and he had assumed I was happy with working in the lumber industry. But when I began to talk to my Dad about changing career paths he suggested I take up ‘Power Engineering’. When I asked him what a power engineer does he explained that’s what he is. My Dad as it turns out has a ‘steam ticket’, but it is technically called ‘Power Engineering’, and my Dad has his 4th class ticket. A Power Engineer works in industrial facilities (plants) operating equipment, learning how a plant process works and repairing equipment and process when needed. Put simply, my Dad is a real life ‘Scotty’. Granted he does not work in space, he has not been on a starship, and he’s never been in a bar fight with Klingons, but he in his own way does what Scotty & Geordi did as Engineers, but for the real world.
 
I quit my job in the lumber industry. Now 6 years later I work at a facility where I destroy hazardous waste through the use of large rotary kilns and incineration. Like Scotty I use both my mind and my hands for my job. I work with equipment, I fix equipment when needed, and I finished my schooling for my 5th Class Power Engineering, I am currently studying for the Provincial exam. At the facility where I work I also act as my crews ‘Control Room Operator’. I have 6 computers which I monitor/control and in essence run the facility as we safely destroy waste, making the world a better place. Again like Scotty when he would ‘run’ the Enterprise from engineering, I run our plant from the control room. Very cool, and I am so much happier now with my career choice in life. When people ask me what I do for a living, I say “I’m kinda like Scotty from Star Trek”.
 
I have ‘Star Trek’ and my Dad to thank for showing me the right career path to walk on.
 
Thank you for your time Mr Shatner.
 
Chris Lockhart
@chrisloc1701

DS9: Best Trek Series?!

Hey there fellow podcast listener, this is your pal Chrisloc1701 with another Geek Fallout blog post. This post was previously released on my old ‘Trek1701’ blog, but I thought I would repost it here on the new blog.
 

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I have to say that DS9 may be the best Star Trek series ever made thus far. Don’t get me wrong, I am a huge TNG and TOS fan but DS9 just has much more going for it than any other Trek TV series. The creators were able to be creative with this series and were not restrained, especially towards the end of the series. For example they allowed real conflict on this series, the last 2 seasons the characters were fighting in a war. Characters were allowed to change and grow, actors were able to act and writers got to write and see their vision become a reality. They had long reaching story arcs and a supporting cast that got in some cases more screen time than the ‘main’ cast. I loved in particular the long continuing story lines. In the start of season 6 they had 6 episodes that were essentially one big continuing story and the last 10 or so episodes of the 7th and final season followed the same pattern. It was an interesting and rewarding experience for us fans, but it did alienate new viewers who came in and had no idea what was going on. That is probably why TNG was able to create such a big fan and casual fan base, by doing one and done stories. A 2-part episode is all that TNG ever did, where as DS9 would do 3-part, 6-part, 10-part epic stories.
 
DS9 is the best Trek series in my opinion. TNG may have a better cast and better one and done stories, but DS9 overall told a better epic story. And the actors were great too. But if you are a new viewer to the DS9 universe may I suggest that the first 3 seasons can be hard to get through, because they follow the TNG one and done story telling style, but DS9 seasons 4-7 are the best Star Trek ever made.
 
See you next time. Beam me up Scotty!!

Chris Lockhart
@chrisloc1701

Hey there fellow podcast listener, this is your old pal Chris, also known as ‘Chrisloc1701’ with yet another blog post discussing a subject near and dear to my heart: STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION!! I am especially looking forward to re-watching season 3 of this series as it was just released on stunning Blue-Ray. This was originally posted on my ‘Random Nerdness’ blog and my ‘Trek1701’ blog, so I wanted to include this blog in the ‘Geek Fallout’ blog.
 

Season 6:  This was another solid season. Star Trek: Deep Space 9 launched mid-season and TNG viewers saw guest star Colm Meaney (Transporter Chief O’Brien) and his family transfer to DS9. Season 6 also marked the end of Whoopi Goldberg’s tenure on the TNG series. She only appeared on 3 episodes and never returned. Her character made no official exit and I to this day I am not sure why she never returned to TNG in season 7. TNG needed a shake-up and they got it in the great 2 part episode ‘Chain Of Command’ with Picard being transferred and Ronny cox coming on board as ‘Captain Edward Jellico’. Jellico was a very strict commanding officer who was hard to please and this created great drama for the actors, especially Rikers epic confrontation with Jellico. Also in that 2 parter Picard was captured by Cardassians and actor Patrick Stewart got to play one of his best performances as Picard. Also James Doohan from the original series returned as ‘Scotty’ in the great episode ‘Relics’. Despite having such a great season it ended with TNG’s worst cliffhanger episode, ‘Descent’ which featured the lame return of the Borg and Data’s evil brother ‘Lore’. It would prove to be a preview of things to come in season 7…

Season 7: Aside from season 1 and 2, season 7 proved to be one of the worst in TNG. There were not many good episodes this season and sadly it would be their last as TNG was being groomed for the silver screen and ‘Star Trek: Voyager’ was being prepped for launch on the upcoming ‘UPN’ network. TNG just suffered extremely creatively this season. I’m not sure if the fact that DS9 was running and Voyager was being prepped that TNG didn’treceive the creative attention it needed. There were more bad episodes than good ones, and many plotlines that had been building for several seasons were not resolved by the end of the show. The series finale ‘All Good Things’ proved to be a terrible send off for the TNG series as the events in that episode didn’t really happen. TNG should have gone out in a blaze of glory, but it didn’t.
 
Despite all the growing pains TNG had, it still is tied with DS9 as being my favourite Trek series. Besides certain creative people holding the show back, I think what held TNG back was that it was limited by the era in which it was created. TNG was the first series in modern television that tried to do the things it did, but it was held back by the limitations of the time. Special effects were very costly and time consuming to produce which is why there were very few big battle scenes and the TNG crew often talked their way out of battles or just missed them (Wolf 359). Cheaper computer generated special effects really did not become the standard until the 4th season of DS9, 1995 or so. But I feel these limitations just made the writers work hard and thus TNG has several of the best Trek franchise episodes. TNG is a great series and is worth watching, but beware of seasons 1, 2 and 7 which are the worst of the series.

And that concludes my discussion on the TNG TV series. But I’m sure to be discussing it again. Thanks for reading and be sure to listen to the ‘Geek Fallout’ podcast!

Live Long And Prosper!!

Chris Lockhart
@chrisloc1701