Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Star Trek: The Royale and The Defector

I'm sick and I have way too much time on my hands...

So, The Royale
Fermat's Last Theorem. Nice example of how quickly SciFi gets outdated by reality. It was proven only six years after the episode aired. But it's still a nice scene.

And speaking of nice scenes, the whole sequence with Data in full crap shooting-mode is hilarious. As is the scene with Worf on the telephone with room service. "NO!" And Troi's look of catatonia when she and Picard are listening to the audio version of the book

The Defector
Aah, Romulans. They are always good for a great story. Especially when they are played by such an actor as Andreas Katsulas. In the scene where Picards asks him "Do you expect me to accept such an offer?", I really waited for "No, Captain Picard, I expect you to die!" Oh, well.
James Sloyan as Alidar Jarok creates another memorable character, it's so nice when enemies are actually believable.
I enjoy the Henry V references and of course the scene at the beginning. Is it just me or does the music remind anyone else of Patrick Doyle's awesome score for Branagh's Henry V?
This for example:

And just because it's so awesome and because it makes me bawl every single time I watch that movie:

Star Trek: Where Silence has Lease

Where Silcence has Lease is one of my favourite STNG episodes. The whole atmosphere is creepy and Nagilum really freaked me out when I was a kid. He still does a bit.
The music is very cool, especially during the scenes when the crew is not yet quite sure what they have encountered. The scene with the beacon is very eerie (which may be because it reminds me of submarine movies and the waiting while the enemy is trying to find the submarine with sonar).
A redshirt scene - yay. At least he has some lines, but come on, as soon as he sit there in his red shirt, we know he's toast.
At the beginning of the episode, Worf and Riker work out in a Tekken goes Predator scenario. Firstly, they do this in their uniforms. Ew. I hope they have time to change. Secondly, the guy in the yellow skull always makes me LOL. I mean, he looks like Skeletor for heaven's sake.

Monday, September 27, 2010

STNG: Booby Trap

I'm rewatching Star Trek The Next Generation, in no apparent order other than "hey, I want to see that episode right now". I'm not going to do any episode recaps or full reviews because a ton of other people have done that. For example Wil Wheaton and it doesn't get any more hilarious than his Memories of the Future reviews.
So, just some things that I particularly enjoyed or found amusing or whatever - this time in episode 3x06 Booby trap

If your date sucked and even the android comments Uh-oh on you being back early, the you know you're in trouble. Hint: falling in love with a simulation is not the solution. I really wonder why that doesn't happen much more often, though.

Picard's frustration that no-one seems to built ships in bottles anymore. O'Brien comes to the rescue and tells him that he did - which earns him a "no-one likes an ass kisser"-look from Riker once the Captain has beamed over to the other ship. Which he is so enthusiastic over that it's cute. Troi agrees with me here (she just phrases it more carefully with "pleasant surprise").

The music is really cool, especially in the scene when they discover that the Enterprise is marooned. Not so cool during the scene where Leah Brahms appears, but I guess I have to live with a few sappy string nstruments there.

And as a total non-sequitur, just because I came across it when looking up why it's called a booby trap:

Right-click and choose "Watch on YouTube" if it doesn't work.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Roleplaying and Reality

I do a lot of roleplaying (pen and paper) and sometimes I'm bugged by the disregard for common sense and reality. That may sound a bit weird since roleplaying after all serves the purpose of saying goodbye to reality at least for a while, but still. Especially when it comes to RPG systems that are designed to take place in a realistic world, like Vampire or Cthulhu.
So I very much enjoyed the essay "On Thud and Blunder" by Poul Anderson. He takes up a lot of things that I tend to groan about and suggests better, more realistic solutions. While he's writing more for fantasy writers, everything in there goes for rolelpaying as well. I don't need to observe every rule of reality, especially when it would destroy a greats scene, but sometimes it would make things a lot more fun. More complicated, true, but more fun.

My favourite part is the one about horses. It looks so easy in movies, doesn't it? And people always say "My character has that huge, black stallion and he obeys every word" Yeah, right. I'm not much of a horseman, but even I know that stallions are not what you would call reliable or easy to control. And let me tell you, mules rock. If you want to travel far, over rough terrain and with heavy luggage, go for a mule. Forget the horse. There may be an advantage in speed (although depending on the parents, there are fast mules), but that's about it.

But I still like the totally unrealistic badass shotguns that the Cthulhu RPG has. It's hard enough to stay alive in that system, let alone sane. Okay, shotguns won't help with staying sane, but at least you can blast away the things that made you cazy.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

I need to vent

So I have a few foster mice at the moment looking for a new home. I get a mail by someone who is interested. Great, I say, I'd like to bring you the mice to see how they will live, if it's okay I'd like you to pay a part of the neutering cost and can you send me a picture of the cage?
Next mail by her says: I live *insert adress* and will you come tomorrow at 11 a.m. to bring the mice? No cage photo.
11 a.m.? I do have a job, you know. But who cares, so I suggest a new date and asked for a description of the cage and ask again if it's okay if we share the cost for neutering (she agreed to that in passing, I overread that).
Next mail I get says that she doubts I'm serious about the whole thing because I want to see pictures of the cage even though I will bring her the mice. And that the whole thing with finding new homes for mice is just a ruse to get people's adresses. Oh, and she already had a new offer, so if I didn├Ąt reply her by tomorrow at the latest, she would take those mice instead,

What the fuck? I had to re-read that twice, I couldn't believe it. Hello, I won't drive the mice all over the city just to find out that the person has a ridiculously small cage or something. And posting a picture of the cage can't be that much work.
Needless to say that I have no plans of giving her the mice.

If you want to meet really weird people, go volunteer at an animal rescue. On the other hand, you meet a lot of wonderful people and you get to do some good, so seriously, go voluneer at an animal rescue.