January 31st, 2014

articles

ten milestone Star Trek novels

Over at What Culture, Ian Coomber lists ten milestone Star Trek novels, and I'm pleased to say that I'm on the list! Articles of the Federation made the cut as a milestone, which I'm pleased to see. Also nice to see my friends Greg Cox, Peter David (thrice!), Andy Mangels, Michael A. Martin, Diane Duane, Peter Morwood, and more on the list.....

Money quote:
The standalone novel isn’t something that has been oft-repeated in the years since, but Articles Of The Federation did make a number of changes in other ways. By helping to found the continuing and interconnected narrative that covers all 24th century Star Trek, it paved the way for umbrella titles such as Star Trek: Typhon Pact in which there is little to no distinction between the various traditional series. It’s biggest narrative contribution however has to be the UFP President’s elevation to a major player in the books’ story-lines as much as the galactic stage, and Bacco alone would make eighteen appearances during her time in office.
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thoughts regarding "The Visitor"

Today's DS9 Rewatch will go up on Tor.com, and it will be for "The Visitor," which is rightfully regarded as one of the best Star Trek stories ever. Seriously, it's always right up there on the list of the best of Trek with "The Trouble with Tribbles," "City on the Edge of Forever," "The Inner Light," "Yesterday's Enterprise," "In the Pale Moonlight," and, er, uh, whatever token Voyager and Enterprise episodes they decide to throw on the list to make it look good.

One of the things I've been doing with the rewatches is also reading the reviews that are being posted by Zack Handlen on the AV Club (he just started the seventh season, so he's well ahead of me) and the reviews that were done by Jamahal "Jammer" Epsicockhan when the show first aired, both of which are excellent.

However, I'm careful to make sure I don't read Zack's or Jammer's reviews until after I've written mine. It's fun to see the different approaches the three of us take, some of which is due to differences in how we approach the reviews. Zack's watching the show for the first time, albeit twenty years after it originally aired, Jammer reviewed the series when it came out twenty years ago, and I'm someone who watched it the first time (and many times since) and is rewatching it now.

What I found especially entertaining about the reviews of "The Visitor" is that we all said to some degree or other the same thing: it's impossible to do this episode justice in a review and/or plot description. You describe it, it sounds cheesy and stupid, but holy crap is it not, and that's on the back of so many different elements that came together perfectly: the acting, the writing, the directing, all of it.

Anyhow, I'm amused that we all felt the need to mention that, though we all discussed it in different ways.

The rewatch will go up around 3pm today.
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ds9 rewatch

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: "The Visitor"

Jake spends his entire life trying to save his father. The DS9 Rewatch does one of its best with "The Visitor."

An excerpt:
The heart and soul of the episode is Tony Todd, who imbues the older Jake with such passion and heart. The elderly version of Jake is a wise, charming old man, one who is comfortable with the decisions he’s made in his life. But we’ve also got the obsessed middle-aged version, who’s lost all sign of personality because it’s been subsumed to the mission he’s set for himself. And then there’s the late 30s Jake (the only version in which Todd wears no old-age makeup), and it’s stellar, especially since he spends those two scenes perfectly mimicking Cirroc Lofton’s mannerisms. He doesn’t do that for the middle-aged and elderly versions of Jake, which is a masterful choice, because those two iterations of Jake’s life are too far removed from the Jake we know.
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    the "Planet of the Daleks" episode of Doctor Who