Category Archives: tv reviews

All Good Things Star Trek Podcast, Episode 48: Star Trek Kids

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It’s been a while since I posted the latest installment of the All Good Things Star Trek Podcast.   Part of it is a hiatus we took due to real-world stuff interfering with recording.

This week, Barry and I look at kids on Star Trek.  This shouldn’t be confused with one of our earliest podcasts when we examined having kids on the Next Generation Enterprise.  This time out we look at some of kids and teens who graced our screens over the nearly fifty year run of Star Trek.   Of course, we’ll get into Wesley Crusher (with shout-outs to Wil Wheaton, in case he wants to either comment on the show or maybe be a celebrity interview on a future installment), Alexander, Jake Sisko, Nog, Naomi Wildman and the Borg kids.

So if you want to get back in touch with your inner child, give this week’s installment a listen.  You can listen and/or download it HERE or try listening directly below.

http://www.podbean.com/media/player/7k53b-582eaf

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Big Finish Review: Doctor Who: Spare Parts by Marc Platt

Doctor Who: Spare Parts (Big Finish Audio Drama, #34)

As Big Finish celebrates its 200th main Doctor Who range release, I decided to take a look back on some of the old favorites and see if they still held up.

Intended as the Cybermen version of “Genesis of the Daleks,” “Spare Parts” is one of the more revered stories from Big Finish. And yet as I listened, I couldn’t recall when or if I’d heard this one before. I feel like I should have heard it when it first came out, but I couldn’t recall many details beyond superficial ones.

Arriving on Mondas in the last days before the population became fully Cyber-ized, the fifth Doctor and Nyssa find themselves embroiled in the politics that helped created the earliest Cybermen. Listening to “Spare Parts,” I couldn’t help but feel that Marc Platt has crafted a superb prelude to “The Tenth Planet” and that I should dust off that DVD and visit the classic serial again.

What could have been a simple imitation of “Genesis of the Daleks” becomes something a bit deeper and different. There’s no one unifying voice for the Cybermen as there was with the Daleks. Instead we see various members of the population and how they react to the developments taking place within their society and on their world. Platt allows us a bit of time to get invested and interested in these characters before he begins changing them into what will eventually become the Cybermen. (If you’ve seen the new series, there are certain sequences from the story that were used in the return of the Cybermen there, though I’d argue they are more effective here). Continue reading

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All Good Things Star Trek Podcast, Episode 46: The Wrath of Cons

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On the latest installment of of All Good Things, Barry sits back and lets Michael rant about the recently completed comic book mini-series Star Trek/Planet of the Apes: The Primate Directive.

We also have some news and commentary about the upcoming Trek holiday ornaments.

Then we jump into a conversation about conventions.  We share memories of going to cons, celebrities we’ve met and the dealer rooms we’ve browsed.

So why not pull up a comfortable chair and enjoy our latest episode?  You can download the episode HERE or listen via the player below.

http://www.podbean.com/media/player/furvx-57728d

star-trek-girls

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And the Doctor Returns, September 19th!!

The first trailer for series nine of Doctor Who is available.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go watch it about a billion more times.

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All Good Things: A Star Trek Podcast, Episode 44: Medical Ethics

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This week, Barry and I celebrate our podcast’s first birthday wishing we could have a nice slice of cellular pep-tide cake.  After we discuss this week’s news, we delve into our main topic — medical ethics in Star Trek.

Star Trek has predicated a lot of technological advances and while I still wish they’d come up with a hypospray for getting shots, there are some interesting questions raised by all five series about medicine.

You can listen to the installment below or download it HERE.

http://www.podbean.com/media/player/ivgmp-572042

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Audiobook Review: Doctor Who and the Deadly Assassin by Terrance Dicks

Doctor Who and the Deadly Assassin: A 4th Doctor novelisation

It’s rare to find a Doctor Who novel that will allow us inside the mind of the Doctor. More often than not, we’ll see into the mind of his companions and those around him.

That makes a story like “The Deadly Assassin” difficult to adapt for the printed page since it’s the only story in the classic canon that doesn’t feature a companion for the Doctor. It’s also a story whose third episode features a lot of action pieces and very little in the way of dialogue.

Because of this, Terrance Dicks’ attempt to adapt the classic Robert Holmes four-parter falls a bit short. I can’t help but wonder if Dicks had produced this story at the beginning or the end of his association with the Target range if he might have expanded some things a bit or made some different storytelling choices. As it is, this comes from the middle period when Dicks rarely had time to do more than adapt the shooting script for the printed page. He didn’t have time to add the flourishes that made novels like “The Day of the Daleks” so memorable.

With two mysterious adversaries for the Doctor to battle (one works for the other), Dicks decides to give away the identity of one earlier in the novel than the televised story does. I can’t help but wonder if it might have been better to let readers in on who is working for the Master rather than the Master himself. It’s disappointing that one of the more pivotal and controversial stories in the classic series run only gets a novelization that’s par for the course. Dicks tries his best, but this is a story that works better visually (at least the sections inside the Matrix do) than they do on the printed page.

Thankfully, the audio version features a reading by Geoffrey Beavers, the only actor who played the Master in the classic series who is still with us. Beavers reading is, as always, a delight and he brings a lot to the read, especially when called upon to read lines for the Master. You can just hear Beavers voice dripping with contempt as he channels the Master in this one. I can’t help but wonder why this line hasn’t seen fit to let Beavers read a story or two that doesn’t feature the Master. I think he’d be great. Why not let him read “Day of the Daleks” — one of the truly great entries from the Target line that hasn’t yet been adapted for audio.

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All Good Things: A Star Trek Podcast, Episode 44: William T. Riker: The Man, the Myth, the Legend

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The only thing that confuses Commander Riker is why it took us so long to do an episode focused on him.

“Mr Worf, fire.”

It’s been twenty-five years since those words were first spoken and the music swelled to a conclusion, ending the third season of Next Generation.   

In celebration of that pivotal moment in Trek history, Barry and I turn the character spotlight onto Commander William T. Riker, also known as Number One, from Star Trek: The Next Generation.  What makes Riker tick and just what makes him such a memorable part of the Trek universe?  Also, we may delve into the pattern that begins to emerge for Riker-centered stories with the poor guy having to question his sanity a lot.

We also discuss the passing of the late, great James Horner and his contribution to the musical landscape of Trek (and other movies).

As always, you can tune in below or follow the link to download HERE.  You can also subscribe in iTunes or via your favorite podcast feeder so you’ll never miss an episode!

http://www.podbean.com/media/player/n53ec-56fb0d

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