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AvatarComments by George Turner*

On “Breaking Bad: Picard

That was completely silly. They just wanted to ship to look like it did something to go to warp, just like having X-wings go from monoplane to biplane to show they meant business. So the series re-used some scenes of Voyager moving the nacelles, over and over, and so far as I remember never said another word about it.

What was doubly stupid is that the ship would've only moved the nacelles once, when it left the factory, and they'd have stayed in the "go" mode until the pivot the ship got cut up for scrap, rusted pivot bearings and all.

At least Firefly's moving nacelles made sense, just like a tilt rotor aircraft.


The episode was aired in 1988 and Windows 3.1 was released in '92.

Perhaps Minuet is in fact the world's first piece of click bait! ^_^


Only if you want to be formal. The four Bynars in episode "11001001" were 11, 00, 01, and 01, thus the title. It's apparently considered by many to be the best episode of season 1, perhaps in part due to Minuet, a holodeck figure the Bynars created as a way to keep Riker and Picard distracted.

If off-site backup and click bait makes one of the best episodes, I shudder to think about the worst.


Ronald D Moore said the problem with TNG was that it was essentially a show about a technologically super-advanced crew that flies around fixing things - things that are broken. Since a show about the exploits of a handyman with a sonic screwdriver would be really boring, most episodes have to start off by breaking the screwdriver or coming up with some crazy reason that it can't work in this particular situation.


Wasn't your experience much like a bad techcentricTNG episode? Many of those could easily be rewritten as a crisis caused by an automatic Windows update. Transcribe a typical meeting where a an IT guy explains the morning's tech problem to management, and then change the names to Gordi, Data, Troi, Beverly, Riker, and Picard, and you have a draft TNG script.


The counselor sitting next to the captain and first officer was bonkers. "Imma sit here and write up mental health reports about the decisions you makin' in the big chair, but don't second-guess yourself on account of me. Also, I can read your mind"

ESP on the bridge as a standard part of their universe makes about a much sense as adding vampires, werewolves, voodoo, and demonic possession. Is it Star Trek or Kolchak in space?

Once they've got Troi occupying a chair, they have to add her as part of ship-to-ship communications, which is lazy writing. Instead of Picard figuring out that the other captain is lying, Troi just says "He's lying." Whew, what was easy!

Imagine how ESP would have ruined the TOS episode Balance of Terror with the Enterprise playing dead to lure in a cloaked Romulan ship, if the Romulans had a counselor who could just tell the Romulan captain "Kirk is just playing dead. Don't fall for it." Cleverness and mind games would go right out the window with all the other interesting story lines.

On “Tom’s vs Time, and Everyone Else

Wouldn't the first-ever issuance of a certificate of non-historic status itself be historic? I could see them putting up a bronze marker out front and declaring the diner to be a history's first official non-historic building, and thus protected as a historic site.

On “Greta Thurnberg’s Semi-slow Boat Upon the Stormy Seas

Many children's crusades end in disaster because they put emotion over logic and reason, otherwise they wouldn't need to rely on children at the forefront.

In South Africa, a young girl named Nongqawuse had a vision of how to defeat the British.
She told the Xhosa (Nelson Mandela's tribe) to burn all their crops and kill their cattle, after which the sun would turn red, the dead would arise, spirits would drive the British into the sea, and all their crops and cattle would be purified and reborn. The people followed her sage advice, killing hundreds of thousands of their cows and burning their crops. Their population predictably nosedived in what was called a "national suicide." A little over a quarter of the people survived the resulting famine, and they converted to Christianity because their traditional beliefs were obviously a total disaster.

Greta Thunberg implores us to abandon cheap and abundant energy, which we use to grow food and stay warm. She's an idiot. Some Xhosa didn't follow Nongqawuse's insanely stupid advice. They were called "the greedy ones", and they stayed in the gene pool because they held on to their crops and cows while everyone else died of starvation. In the aftermath of the disaster, Nongqawuse blamed them for the failure to bring about her visions.

On “Epstein Dead

Unrelated: I just clicked over to The Smithsonian Magazine and saw this headline:

A New Species of Leech Is Discovered Near Washington, D.C.

Everything makes sense now.


I haven't seen that movie, so were they trying to make sure the dirty pictures of Prince Margaret didn't leak because they would cause millions of British men to shove cigars into their eyeballs and thus collapse the NHS? Were the pictures from the 1950's or from the 1990's?

On “This One Really Hurts

I actually have no idea what she did, other that something about a blackface skit.

I haven't paid attention to her since I found out she cheated on Jimmy Kimmel, with Matt Damon of all people.

On “Epstein Dead

I feel kind of bad for the family of the guard who's going to get killed in a botched robbery next week.

On “Defenders Of The Gold Bikini 2: The Fempire Doesn’t Strike Back

In my Sith rant I concluded that Yoda killed her, though Obi Wan certainly helped by having her traipse around a volcano sucking down noxious fumes as she watched him slicing Anakin to pieces.

Maybe Padmé's lungs were fried, her bloodstream beset with a witch's brew of inorganic compounds, or is it more likely that Master Yoda, suspiciously close at hand, was using his unnatural powers to solve a problem confronting his almighty Jedi Order? He sure didn't have a problem with keeping the younglings without the consent of either parent now, did he? His new primary funding source got first pick, as money, power, and influence are always in strange agreement with Jedi decisions. So Senator Organa opted for the girl, raising her as a princess, filling her head with more Jedi lies, using her as a mule to run weapons and intelligence. The other of Anakin's precious children was dumped in the desert. I guess Master Yoda couldn't find a buyer. Watto must have retired to Corellia.

The epic is so badly written that it makes more sense if you flip the good guys and bad guys.

On “This One Really Hurts

Moral scolds never forget, and want to make sure nobody else does either.


I remember how broken up I was when I heard rumors swirling that Gene Simmons was not quite a proper family man under all that makeup. Then I heard the same about Tommy Lee, and suspected as much about David Lee Roth. I went back and researched older musicians like Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, and even Lemmy of Motorhead.

I reached the awful conclusion that some rock stars behave rather inappropriately with thousands of hot young women, and so, in disgust, I went out and bought a Stratocaster and a Marshall amp.

Them opera folks might be all high society and present themselves as all prim and proper, but how many times are we supposed to pretend to be shocked that gambling was going on in the casino?

Your class distinctions may vary, but are the concert people in tuxedos and ball gowns really different from Ozzy Osbourne or the Wilson sisters other than what they consider socially acceptable public behavior? That difference might be extreme, since we're seeing outrage over Placido Domingo's alleged transgressions that, summed over the span of thirty years, would be easily topped in the span of two hours by many touring rock stars.

We have contradictory standards in our heads:

1. Any inappropriate behavior is inappropriate and shouldn't be tolerated!
2. When the number of instances of inappropriate behavior top one thousand, you reach legend status!

This might be difficult to untangle in any coherent manner.


Well, I'm not sure how #meToo translates to countries like Italy and France. Is there such a thing as unwanted kissing on both cheeks? Accepted norms vary wildly by country. In Norway, talking to a check-out clerk is considered a sign of mental instability, whereas in other countries they greet a stranger by all but trying to marry them into the family.


Well, first off, I don't believe any what any soprano says.

Whew! That out of the way, my issue wasn't with the original #meToo, which was about the silence surrounding Weinstein, it was with #believeAllVictims, which is contrary to virtually everything we've learned about justice and the law over the last thousand or more years. #figureOutTheTruth would make a much better hashtag.

On “Nuclear Explosion in Russia

Well, I think the big loser is, as usual, Russia. Their mysterious nuclear jet engine just blasted its isotope composition into the atmosphere and all over everything in the region, so everyone will get a good sample of it. It's also reminded ordinary Russians that their nuclear and rocket scientists are probably as drunk as everyone else over there.

On “Universal Pictures Should Not Cancel “The Hunt”

Mentally unstable people could have used the film as a pretext to attack some elites and celebrities, ala Taxi Driver, or a bunch of students (The Columbine killers said they were "going NBK", a reference to Natural Born Killers). Then folks on right would make all kinds of cute memes saying "Aha! Maybe you shouldn't have released that horrible death porn flick about a cultural civil war!"

I suspect the cancellation isn't because of what Trump said, but because it woke the studio up to the realization that in the aftermath of any inspired politicized attack that gets 24/7 cable coverage, the film's release would hand a big talking point to all the conservative pundits and Congressional blowhards.

On “Epstein Dead

Hey, but they figured out that lowering flags to half mast until August 8th was a signal to white supremacists because 8/8=HH=Heil Hitler in some deranged reporter's mind.


Oh, you should see where they put the people who aren't billionaires! No frosting on the windows, prisoners screaming at each other, one low-wattage incandescent bulb that burned out in 1974.

But did Epstein learn nothing from watching Narcos season 2? You don't surrender until after the government agrees to let you build your own prison, complete with basketball courts, pool tables, video games, a bar, and daily stripper deliveries.

On “Bless the Food, And the Hands That Provided It

This morning I had bubble and squeak for breakfast, along with bacon and eggs. Bubble and squeak reminds me of my childhood when I once wondered what the heck English kids ate for breakfast. Well now I know.

It's like scattered and smothered hash browns for people who don't have access to hash browns.

On “Epstein Dead

Well, I've been trying to figure out who could've have pulled it off. So far my prime suspect is Eugene Victor Tooms, who was in The X-Files season 1 episode 3. He was a weird mutant who could deform his body and squeeze into any room, leaving no signs of entry or exit. However, he also ripped out his victim's livers, and so far as I've heard Epstein's liver wasn't taken.

So that leaves me with the Clintons again. Judging from Twitter and other such places, everybody knew Epstein didn't have a prayer of making it to trial. Nobody even had to photoshop new memes for it because the ones the made weeks ago are spot on.

On “Jane Wick

She was stumped by her garbage disposal and freaked out over a Japanese sink/toilet. She wouldn't do well as a crime fighter because she'd assault someone from taking a movie from RedBox, thinking it was theft.

*Comment archive for non-registered commenters assembled by email address as provided.