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ElectricBoogaloo

S01.E04: Absolute Candor

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The crew's journey to Freecloud takes a detour when Picard orders a stop at the planet Vashti, where Picard and Raffi relocated Romulan refugees 14 years earlier; Picard reunites with Elnor, a young Romulan he befriended during the relocation.

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Original air date: 2/13/20

Edited by ElectricBoogaloo
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Rios: Admiral, if finding Maddox is the mission, why are we visiting angry, resentful, possibly ungrateful, Romulans???? 

Edited by paigow
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Things are really picking up now. I love the ragtag team that Picard is slowly assembling. And woooo, Seven of Nine!

Little Elnor was adorable. I get his resentment though. And wow, all this time Picard thought of himself as the hero only to be confronted on Vashti about how the rescued Romulans felt abandoned and betrayed by him.

More incesty vibes from Narissa this week. Crawling onto your brother's bed while he sleeps and then asking about the sex he's having with his target isn't inappropriate at all!

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23 minutes ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

Little Elnor was adorable. I get his resentment though. And wow, all this time Picard thought of himself as the hero only to be confronted on Vashti about how the rescued Romulans felt abandoned and betrayed by him.

Truly abandoned = Supernova incineration...so is your angry cup half-full or half-empty?

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I watched this way too late at night, so I probably need to watch again to absorb everything. 

The cold open not only showed us what happened in the past, but also highlights Picard's flaws, which I appreciate. He has good intentions, but he seems to think he knows what is best for everyone, and that is not always the case. And I am REALLY digging it. 

Picard showing up on the Romulan little settlement just screamed colonialism. It was even reflected in Picard's wardrobe, down to his Panama hat and the vaguely Asian (i.e., "not white") vibe to the settlement. Picard rolls in like the great white savior, the great benevolent guy who brings them gifts, thinks he knows best for everyone, but when he had his falling out with Starfleet he just effed off and left all these people hanging out to dry (including Raffi). They are understandably not happy with him. He has to reconcile all this.

I enjoyed his relationship with Elnor, though I also totally loved the explanation for why Picard doesn't like kids (they are loud and demanding and interfere with both work and pleasure. I mean...yeah. You just need to decide if you think they are worth sacrificing all that, and not everyone is down with that - which is okay). But it makes sense to me that Picard would mellow with age and might bond with a kid, especially since every now and again Picard seemed to regret not having a family.

I also love the Romulan nuns. They lend complexity to the Romulan culture - we are constantly told that Romulans are all about secrecy, but these ladies are all about being open and blunt honesty (and that played out nicely when Elnor was all, "You only came back because you need me, not because you wanted to see me").  I just wish we got more "absolute candor" - stuff like, "That outfit looks terrible on you" and "Smells weird in here. Who farted?" Just lean into the brutal honesty, ladies.

Because I was sleepy, I totally didn't pay attention to the Soji/Narek part. I just vaguely recall them sliding around the Borg cube in their socks and Narek's gross sister popping up with her Lannister vibes grossing me out.

Then great to see Seven of Nine at the end. Look forward to seeing more of her.

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2 hours ago, Kostgard said:

I also love the Romulan nuns.

I love Amirah Vann on How to Get Away with Murder, and I may have let out a soft squeal when I recognized her.  

Also, an entire society of Romulan Amazons?  Sign me up.

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3 hours ago, Kostgard said:

Then great to see Seven of Nine at the end. Look forward to seeing more of her.

So glad Seven has finally shown up -- and she didn't just waltz in she comes in firing in an unregistered ship to help Picard and his ragtag crew put some major hurt on an old Romulan warbird.  

Edited by ottoDbusdriver
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But when are they going to get to the fireworks factory? 

It’s all a bit slow moving for me.

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Man, who hasn't Picard pissed off these past few years?  It's kind of interesting that he seems to be Star Trek captain that has become polarizing and flamed out in a lot of people's eyes, compared to the likes of Janeway, who I knew rose up in the ranks, or the likes of Kirk and Sisko, who mainly seemed to be considered legends in the universe.  Kind of ironic since Picard has always been the "diplomat" out of the "captains", but despite being one who mainly avoided bloodshed, he seems to have acquired the biggest enemy list.

Enjoyed this episode, even though it kind of is starting to feel like an RPG, with Picard have to acquire all of his party members first, before he can take on the big threat (and I'm sure he has a few side missions and quests to get through, so that he can get that XP and level up!)  So, now this Elnor guy joins the fun: a badass warrior elf.... err, Romulan monk, who pledges his loyalty to Picard's mission, but it won't be easy since a) there is clearly hurt feelings over Elnor feeling like  Picard abandoned him and b) Picard isn't quite happy with Elnor's "decapitate first, ask questions later" approach to handling situations.

So, Rios' entire ship seems to have an entire holographic crew that can aide him with almost anything, and each of them seem to have their own distinctive personalities.  I wonder what is going on with all of that? 

Narek's still trying to work Soji, but is still going to slow, so Rizzo is doing what most siblings would do in this situation: slink into his bed and be all creepy.  Yep, they really are the Trek version of the Lannisters.  But it does sound like there might be even more than just Soji and the departed Dahj that are out there?  If so, Isa Briones has got some good job security here!

Cool that Jonathan Frakes directed this one.

Finally, Seven of freaking Nine!  I'm glad she has finally arrived and can't wait to see what she brings to the table: especially since it is clear she and Picard have some kind of history.

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I'm really enjoying the show. It's slow-paced, to be sure, but I think will be stronger and richer in the long run for taking the time to lay all the groundwork. They are layering in a lot of depth as they go along, plus a lot of really nifty, subtle character work that I'm enjoying a lot. I like almost everyone so far - Narek and Narissa are the biggest downside of the show to me, so far, not helped by the fact that their part of the sub-plot is basically just treading water until La Sirena makes it that far.

1 hour ago, thuganomics85 said:

So, Rios' entire ship seems to have an entire holographic crew that can aide him with almost anything, and each of them seem to have their own distinctive personalities.  I wonder what is going on with all of that? 

I think the crew of self-image holograms tells us a fair bit about Rios and how damaged he is, that he has tucked himself away in solitude on this ship with no human crew to interact with, but does actually need support in running the ship, so he relies on holograms...but rather than have them look like other people, which would perhaps feel a bit too much like human interaction, instead makes them look like himself, so that he can feel free to dismiss them as much as he likes. Rattling around that ship all alone, he is literally just talking to himself all the time! I'm curious to know how much of the base personality of the various holograms is pre-programmed, with just the image overlaid, and how much Rios has tinkered with those personalities for his own amusement. We saw in this episode that part of Rios is irritated to suddenly have a whole crowd of people invading the privacy of the ship (when Agnes interrupted him reading, he went through the entire conversation with gritted teeth, he did not like being disturbed). I mean, he initially only signed up for Picard as a solo passenger - by the end of this episode that number has risen to five passengers, which is a lot of extra people to have around for a guy who prefers his own company. But we also saw by the end of this episode that he seemed to kind of enjoy falling back into something of the Starfleet swing - Raffi called him out on it at one point, but I think she's feeling much the same way.

Judging by the preview, next week should be fun!

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If Picard could ask Q to change history, he would probably give Seven everything she wanted to be his XO... 

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Soooo slow, and too cutesy by far. Also, Patrick Stewart’s line reading seemed very mistimed... almost like a slight delay between when he was supposed to speak and when he did.

Also, the Romulans on Vashti, and their warrior women, sound a lot like some women I remember in Dune.

I have loved ST for 50-plus years, and am an admirer of SPS, but I am not digging this show. 

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2 hours ago, Llywela said:

I think the crew of self-image holograms tells us a fair bit about Rios and how damaged he is..

Or he got everything at a discount from the Google app store...because there is no Shutterstock access to additional "skins"...

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28 minutes ago, paigow said:

Or he got everything at a discount from the Google app store...because there is no Shutterstock access to additional "skins"...

LOL but I would assume all those holos originally came with a skin, which Rios then changed to suit his own purpose. Unless he signed over his likeness to the company years ago to make a bit of extra cash, and that decision has now come around to bite him...;)

Nah, I stand by my character analysis above.

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So glad that it is finally picking up.

I think l am going to like Elrond Elnor.

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Now I’ve seen Elrond, I can’t unsee it 😄

One thing I found a little odd is that, while AFAI can remember, Romulans have rather nondescript accents...but adult Elnor had a vaguely Australian accent (and the actor is American). 

Do any of you here watch the Young and the Restless? The actor who plays New Chance was the Romulan who challenged Elnor after he fought the gang leader.

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54 minutes ago, Capricasix said:

One thing I found a little odd is that, while AFAI can remember, Romulans have rather nondescript accents...but adult Elnor had a vaguely Australian accent (and the actor is American). 

Lots of planets have an Australia. 😉 The actor who plays adult Elnor is Australian, btw, not American - Evan Evagora (imdb has the wrong actor listed for this episode, but it is definitely Evagora).

Picard had an Irish-accented Romulan living with him at the vineyard in France. We were also shown Romulans with a wide range of skin colours in this episode, whereas they were all white in TNG. This show is delving much more deeply into Romulan culture and society, and I like that they are being given more depth and variety as a race, including varied internal ethnicities. I consider the different accents under that same heading: ethnic variety. That they all sound like various human accents I can handwave in the same way that I handwaved all TNG aliens sounding American (and all Doctor Who aliens sounding British).

Edited by Llywela
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6 hours ago, thuganomics85 said:

Kind of ironic since Picard has always been the "diplomat" out of the "captains", but despite being one who mainly avoided bloodshed, he seems to have acquired the biggest enemy list.

I think this is more than irony; I think it's a fault in the writing. It seems as if, to make the new series timely, Picard's character is being actively distorted. I'm not sure how to put this without sounding like your average butthurt fanboy, but of all the captains, Picard seems the least patronizing, the least given to knowing what's best for everyone around him. Now that the writing needs him to be the colonizer in the room, that's what we discover he is. I don't really buy that this was always part of his character, Château Picard be damned.  

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1 hour ago, Capricasix said:

but adult Elnor had a vaguely Australian accent (and the actor is American). 

He's Australian.

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9 minutes ago, Sandman said:

of all the captains, Picard seems the least patronizing, the least given to knowing what's best for everyone around him. 

Picard always thought he knew what was best for everyone around him! Grandiose speeches to that effect are what he was always best known for. And his character was not what you'd call consistently written through the 7 seasons + movies of TNG, although Patrick Stewart always acted him so well it was easy to gloss over those inconsistencies. 

I wouldn't say he is being written as a 'coloniser' here. He is being written as someone who believed in a cause, passionately and wholeheartedly, had that cause ripped out from under his feet, and reacted badly, and is now learning that there were wider consequences. Sometimes the very best of intentions don't work out the way those involved had hoped.

Picard tried to do a good thing. That effort failed, through no fault of his own, and it hit him hard. In his despair, he resigned and withdrew into himself, for years. He is now realising that a lot of people, who were relying on him personally and to whom he had made certain promises, were as hard hit by his resignation as he was by the hardline stance taken by Starfleet. I see nothing out of character in all that.

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Point taken, but I still think of Kirk as far more paternalistic than Picard in general.

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On 2/13/2020 at 9:26 AM, paigow said:

Truly abandoned = Supernova incineration...so is your angry cup half-full or half-empty?

This. I do not get the Romulan resentment at all. The other choice they had was certain death. Would life in that planet, no matter bad, better than massive death? And I am not very sure, maybe on purpose, what did they expect from Picard and how he failed them?

As for the show itself, I get it that Star Trek franchise is more cerebral and philosophical, but this one is too much. This show blows the Star Trek vs Star Wars debate out of the water... in favor of Star Wars. Picard does his research, talking to people, building his crew, while Din Djarin of The Mandalorian jumps across the galaxy blasting, killing interesting creatures and saving a very cute one.

Edited by TV Anonymous

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14 minutes ago, TV Anonymous said:

This. I do not get the Romulan resentment at all. The other choice they had was certain death. Would life in that planet, no matter bad, better than massive death? And I am not very sure, maybe on purpose, what did they expect from Picard and how he failed them?

If I went from what was probably the relative luxury of modern 24th century living to squalor because of a disaster, for the first year or so I'd be happy to be alive, but after 14 years I too would be pissed off that I had no access to means of improvement and that my standard of living had not returned to anywhere near its original level.

Edited by DavidJSnyder
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This episode made it clear that Picard made a lot of promises, not only on behalf of Starfleet, but also personal promises, from himself - promises not only around saving people from the supernova, but also about helping them re-settle afterward. The resettlement work on Vashti wasn't even half-done when he walked away, barely even bothering to say goodbye, he was so wrapped up in other issues. He promised to return, but never did - and also never bothered to get in touch to explain why he could no longer be involved, after making so many promises.

And...let us not forget that Romulans have not historically been what you'd call a trusting race, so for them to believe in those promises in the first place was huge, and therefore makes the disillusionment all the greater. But not all of them feel that way. We've been shown Romulans who remain deeply committed to Picard and love him dearly for what he has done for them (Laris and Zhaban), Romulans who feel betrayed by the trust they were persuaded to place in him and are angry about the situation they were left in (the ex-senator in this episode), Romulans who feel let down by Picard's failure to keep his promises, but generally understand that there were reasons why (Zani and the other sisters), and a Romulan who feels personally betrayed by Picard's failure to keep very personal promises made to him, specifically, but is prepared to keep faith with him anyway (Elnor). There's loads of variety there, which reminds us that there are multiple sides to every story. I really like the fact that it is so messy, because that feels very real. All of these people have very good reasons for feeling the way they do, from Picard and Raffi to the various Romulans we've met, those reasons are all rooted in their individuals personalities and situations, and they are all both right and wrong about each other, because none of them fully understand what the others have been going through. That is 100% how real life works.

Edited by Llywela
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But the Romulan Empire was never part of the Federation, even though they did become allies in fighting the Dominions. Prior to Dominion War, Romulans and Federation were in hostile state, even though not in open war. Point is, the Federation owed the Romulans nothing and the Romulans were not in the place to have demands.

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37 minutes ago, TV Anonymous said:

This. I do not get the Romulan resentment at all. The other choice they had was certain death. Would life in that planet, no matter bad, better than massive death? And I am not very sure, maybe on purpose, what did they expect from Picard and how he failed them?

 

Or to solve the problem them selves, which is what the the former senator was saying.  From their thinking, Picard and the Federation saw a weakness in the Romulans, and took advantage of it. They’re goal was destabilization, not some altruistic attempt to help a neighbor.  If the Federation had minded their own damn business the mighty Romulan Star Empire, which has stood for centuries, would have persevered through their own ingenuity, cunning and guile.  And as proof for his thesis, just look at the last 14 years. This view may not be logical, but it makes sense from a Romulan point of view. 

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Despite the weird pacing, I am enjoying this show far more than Star Trek Discovery. 

I was thinking the same as @ajsnaves about about how the Romulans became became so dependent of Federation help once it was offered, and how this led to a certain learned helplessness. Insert the historical analogy of your choice.

Do the Romulans have other allies?

How does Jean-Luc know Seven? Have they met, or has he just heard about her? And why does she go by Seven of Nine and not Annika Hansen? And why does she still have at least one prominent implant?

Also, do Narek and Narissa watch holos of Game of Thrones? Because I am getting some icky incest vibes.

Edited by marinw
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21 minutes ago, TV Anonymous said:

But the Romulan Empire was never part of the Federation, even though they did become allies in fighting the Dominions. Prior to Dominion War, Romulans and Federation were in hostile state, even though not in open war. Point is, the Federation owed the Romulans nothing and the Romulans were not in the place to have demands.

Where has it been suggested that they made demands? We've been told that in the face of catastrophe they put aside centuries of hostility and placed their trust in the promises of help that were freely made to them by the Federation, only for that help to be snatched away again in an instant, leaving them high and dry. If an old enemy made overtures of friendship to me when I was at my weakest, and then abandoned me just when I'd started to believe maybe I could trust them after all, I would be left feeling burned as well.

If that offer of help had never been made, maybe more people would have died in the supernova, but from the Romulan point of view, they could have concentrated on their own efforts, for better or for worse, with no one to blame for any failures but themselves. Instead, they trusted the promises made to them, allowed themselves to be maneuvered in a highly vulnerable position in which they were dependent on continued support, and were then abandoned, all those lofty promises disintegrating into dust. 

So, should they be grateful that they were given any help at all? Or are they justified in feeling betrayed when the much-vaunted Federation failed to follow through on the promises it had made? There are arguments to be made in favour of both positions, and that is what makes it so real, because that is often how it is in real life. Only too often, there are no real rights or wrongs, only flawed individuals doing their best within the limits of the resources and knowledge available to them.

And like I said, trust does not come easily to Romulans. It is only natural that some of them would suspect the Federation deliberately set them up in order to weaken them.

7 minutes ago, marinw said:

How does Jean-Luc know Seven? Have the met, or has he just heard about her. and why does she go by Seven of Nine and not Annika Hansen? And why does she still have at least one prominent implant?

He was still in service when Voyager made its triumphant return from the Delta Quadrant, and that incredible return would have been big news across the Federation, never mind just within Starfleet. I imagine he read all the reports - and Seven of Nine's situation would have really stood out, especially given his own history.

Seven's implant? Maybe she chose to keep it as part of her visual identity that she wasn't ready to let go of, maybe it was found to be too essential to remove, or maybe she just couldn't be bothered putting herself through further surgery if not strictly necessary. From an external point of view, it is a distinctive part of her signature look.

As to whether they have actually met before, I daresay we'll find out next week.

Edited by Llywela
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49 minutes ago, marinw said:

And why does she go by Seven of Nine and not Annika Hansen? And why does she still have at least one prominent implant?

CMIIW, but IIRC in one of the episodes it was explained that some parts became part of her and could not be removed.

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Picard was stylin' in his white suit and hat. (However, point taken from upthread about how it was basically a colonialist uniform. Not so cool.)

Amirah Vann! She gets the best roles. How to Get Away with Murder, Queen Sugar, and now the Trekverse. Good for her. (And I didn't realize how tiny she is. Picard was towering over her even though the scenes were seemingly staged to minimize their height difference.)

Well, Cabrera's flat American accent is decent I guess. I liked the Hospitality Hologram. Rios is fine in whatever form he takes. Foine fine.

Romulan warrior nuns. Have they been shown in a Trek project before?

What's the big deal about sliding on a slick floor on your stocking feet? Hasn't everybody done that?

Elnor does not play. "I regret your choice." Lol, that's like saying, "You made me do it!"

Heh, I think of all Rios' holograms I like Emmet the best. He was messy hot.

Seven of Nine! Yes!

Still cracking up at that preview with Rios dressed like a Latin Superfly.

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the Trek version of the Lannisters

Yeah, and I feel like: was anyone asking for that? Cersei and Jaime perhaps should just be left to hold their unique place in the pantheon of icky fictional sibling relationships.

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The actor who plays New Chance was the Romulan who challenged Elnor after he fought the gang leader.

CBS looking after their own. Wonder why he got so much juice all of a sudden?

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5 minutes ago, TV Anonymous said:

CMIIW,

Haven't seen that acronym. What does it stand for?

 

5 minutes ago, TV Anonymous said:

it was explained that some parts became part of her and could not be removed.

Now that I think about it, the only ex-Borg without any visible implants is Jean-Luc himself. Perhaps because he was only with the Collective a short time (Six days I think, correct me if I'm wrong). We never did hear about the Enterprise E crew members who were assimilated during First Contact.

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2 hours ago, TV Anonymous said:

But the Romulan Empire was never part of the Federation, even though they did become allies in fighting the Dominions. Prior to Dominion War, Romulans and Federation were in hostile state, even though not in open war. Point is, the Federation owed the Romulans nothing and the Romulans were not in the place to have demands.

After Praxis exploded, the Federation proposed a complete evacuation of Q'onos at the Kitomer Conference and until that time the Klingons had been mortal enemies of the Federation as well.   It seems strange the Federation would become so blasé this time around, especially after the aid the Romulans gave during the Dominion War... and even more especially given the vested interest the Vulcans would have had in saving the Romulans.    (Although, I suppose that was the point of Spock's last ditch effort with the red matter.)      I guess the scale and immediacy of the evacuation of Romulus and surrounding systems was far more daunting.

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2 hours ago, Llywela said:

Picard always thought he knew what was best for everyone around him! Grandiose speeches to that effect are what he was always best known for. And his character was not what you'd call consistently written through the 7 seasons + movies of TNG, although Patrick Stewart always acted him so well it was easy to gloss over those inconsistencies. 

I wouldn't say he is being written as a 'coloniser' here. He is being written as someone who believed in a cause, passionately and wholeheartedly, had that cause ripped out from under his feet, and reacted badly, and is now learning that there were wider consequences. Sometimes the very best of intentions don't work out the way those involved had hoped.

Picard tried to do a good thing. That effort failed, through no fault of his own, and it hit him hard. In his despair, he resigned and withdrew into himself, for years. He is now realising that a lot of people, who were relying on him personally and to whom he had made certain promises, were as hard hit by his resignation as he was by the hardline stance taken by Starfleet. I see nothing out of character in all that.

I agree with all this - and when I noted that Picard came rolling in wearing the colonizer uniform, he was really representing Star Fleet and their thinking (even though he was in casual colonizer wear, he still had his Starfleet com badge on) and not specifically his own, though he clearly was part of it. And it isn't necessarily a reflect of bad intent (I don't think Starfleet was all, "Hey! We're here to exploit your people and your natural resources!"), just...thinking you know what's best and not actually checking in with the people you are helping and then feeling free to cut and run. How many times has a global power like the US gone rolling in somewhere, cleared out the "bad guys" then was all, "Hey, you're gonna live over here now, we built you a little school over there, and here's a bag of grain. See ya!" while the people were all, "Um, this doesn't quite work for us. Also, you're leaving a huge power vacuum, so...help? Still? Please?"

And I don't think this is trying to paint Picard as the terrible Starfleet captain (let's be real - Kirk had to have pissed off people left and right during his career. There's probably a galaxy full of people who want to kick his ass). This is, I think, the first time we are seeing Picard and Starfleet really deconstructed this way. It was apparently something Patrick Stewart really wanted to do, and I really like the idea. No, it doesn't feel like the Trek we're used to, and I can see how people find it slow or boring, but I think it is fascinating. And I think it is how we learn and improve - don't gloss over the bad stuff because something or someone has mostly been good or had good intentions. Look at it and learn from it. I think that is exactly what Picard is doing, and perhaps it will flow over into Starfleet.

1 hour ago, Joimiaroxeu said:

Yeah, and I feel like: was anyone asking for that? Cersei and Jaime perhaps should just be left to hold their unique place in the pantheon of icky fictional sibling relationships.

Yes, I find myself wishing that she was just his highly inappropriate supervisor, and not  his sister. Let's just...not go there again, shall we?

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TNG Picard would listen to what everyone had to say, what they wanted, what their suggestions were. He was a mediator and a delegator (“make it so”), who occasionally yanked the steering wheel and when things got dicey or obstinate diplomats wouldn’t cooperate. Picard Picard is not quite like that. He is/was a micromanager of a very large Federation project, and the Federation liaison with the Romulans. Him quitting Starfleet, when they decided to end their Romulan Rescue, rather than persist and make the best use of what resources he had, and use his skills to negotiate for a reconsideration, is uncharacteristic. But Picard Picard has early stage irumodic syndrome, space dementia.  

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Did anyone else scream 7 of 9!!!!  And then scream Nooooo!!!! When they cut to credits?!?!

In regards to the episode overall:

1.        Are all evil brothers and sisters incestuous?

2.        I liked Elnor. I think if things worked out Picard would have adopted the kid.

3.        Romulans have always been xenophobic. Not sure why Picard started a stink at the bar.

4.        I am not sure why the Romulans blame Picard. He lost his job for them.

And most important – Why were the Romulans only looking at Starfleet to assist with the relocation of their people?  Their warbird D’deridex class ship has 45+ decks.  And how long did they know that there was an issue with the planet being destroyed? Why wouldn’t they start some sort of evacuation and wait for Starfleet and Picard to spearhead the evacuation?

Seriously... I don't like plot contrivance. 

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36 minutes ago, kokapetl said:

TNG Picard would listen to what everyone had to say, what they wanted, what their suggestions were. He was a mediator and a delegator (“make it so”), who occasionally yanked the steering wheel and when things got dicey or obstinate diplomats wouldn’t cooperate. Picard Picard is not quite like that. He is/was a micromanager of a very large Federation project, and the Federation liaison with the Romulans. Him quitting Starfleet, when they decided to end their Romulan Rescue, rather than persist and make the best use of what resources he had, and use his skills to negotiate for a reconsideration, is uncharacteristic. But Picard Picard has early stage irumodic syndrome, space dementia.  

I don't think anything we have seen here is out of character. A long period of time has passed, during which significant events took place, and both Picard and the universe he lives in have changed as a result. I don't think his resignation was out of character either. I think he made a proud, valiant stand of the kind he has made many, many times before, but where in the past he has talked opposing parties round, on this occasion his bluff was called. In the heat of the moment he felt unable to walk it back, having made that last ditch stand...and then it was too late, both parties dug their heels in, despair took hold (and took hold hard, that much is clear)...and now it is 14 years later and the mess has never really been cleaned up.

Would the Picard of TNG have offered his resignation in that moment, or felt obliged to go through with it when his bluff was called? Maybe not. But this wasn't the Picard of TNG. This was already a much older Picard, one who had devoted his whole being to the relief effort for what was probably a good few years at that point, and that experience had changed him, just as the years since have changed him further. And just as his time aboard the Enterprise changed him through the years of the show.

What I like about all this is that we've been given multiple perspectives on the same series of events, but the show has not at any point said: this person's interpretation of events is correct, and everyone else is wrong. Rather, the show has simply said: all these people were affected by the same sequence of events and they were all affected in different ways, they have all been carrying that trauma with them ever since, this is how they feel about it now, and all of those points of view are valid.

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3 hours ago, Joimiaroxeu said:

CBS looking after their own. Wonder why he got so much juice all of a sudden?

I was going to call him NuChance, but I didn’t know if there were any other Preverts in this topic 😄

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1 minute ago, greekmom said:

I am not sure why the Romulans blame Picard. He lost his job for them.

And most important – Why were the Romulans only looking at Starfleet to assist with the relocation of their people?  Their warbird D’deridex class ship has 45+ decks.  And how long did they know that there was an issue with the planet being destroyed? Why wouldn’t they start some sort of evacuation and wait for Starfleet and Picard to spearhead the evacuation?

As I said above, not all the Romulans blame Picard - see Laris and Zhaban, who would lay down their lives for him. A group of Romulans on this particular planet blame Picard because he made very personal promises to them that he then failed to follow through on, without even getting in touch to explain - all that was laid out very clearly in this episode.

The Romulan fleet would have played a big part in the evacuation, but it wasn't sufficient for the billions of people in need of evacuation - it wasn't just one planet affected, it was many, many worlds within the Empire. That's why Starfleet offered to help. And once that help was accepted, that's where it becomes logistically vital, because the whole operation would then have been planned around those joint resources - that was the point the ex-senator made in this episode. If Starfleet hadn't offered to help, the Romulans would have continued to make plans based on their own resources, for better or for worse. Instead, they accepted the help, which meant the plans that were made depended on that help actually manifesting - so because Starfleet then failed to follow through, the Romulans were left worse off than if they'd never been helped at all, because it was then too late to go back to planning around their own resources.

Now, Starfleet didn't withdraw its support lightly - the Mars attack was devastating. But because Romulans don't trust easily at the best of times, it would have been very easy for factions to form that believed Starfleet did it on purpose to weaken them. And that's the perspective the ex-senator gave us in this episode.

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The Romulans are just like modern day Russia. A sudden collapse from being a super power that was feared throughout the world to a much smaller nation with less resources and power.

Promises were made (NATO would not gobble up the old soviet bloc in exchange for German unification) were broken and you have resentment and fear,

Even if all the Romulans were saved and  deposited on empty planets around the system you would still have anger and resentment because your people are scattered around in pockets surrounded by people you don't trust without the resources (lets face it any planet worth being inhabited would have been by the time the Romulans were allowed to pick out planets to live on). Where is the Romulan fleet anyway?

I think those people don't understand that the great fleet that was being assembled to save them was destroyed and starships are not big enough to haul people around by the billions in short order. The federation could have just sat back with popcorn and watch the Romulan Empire combust and kill off what was left if needed and call it a day. Just like the US could have made a deal with China to dismember Russia when it fell apart.

 

 

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The Romulans tried to subjugate the Klingons by creating the Duras conspiracy...Now they are bitching to Picard about being disenfranchised, divided, exploited when weak...karma dude...

Even Romulus in Abrams-verse Trek waited for Spock to save them...so there may be a multi-verse theme here...

Edited by paigow

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4 hours ago, greekmom said:

1.        Are all evil brothers and sisters incestuous?

2.        I liked Elnor. I think if things worked out Picard would have adopted the kid.

Duras and his sisters were likely exceptions to that rule...

Waiting for one of the wise-ass holograms to call him Eleanor...then watch the bridge get destroyed....

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Late to the party but I agree with those who point out how different people react to Picard is a reflection of human (Romulan) experience and that this deconstruction of Star Fleet and Picard is intriguing to watch. I always liked the Romulans and wanted to know more about them - I love all the tidbits about their culture we're getting. Even though the Bene Gesserit vibe was strong with the fighting nuns. 

Random notes:

How many holograms are running around that ship?

Some Romulans seem to have embraced their own version of fascism down to black-white-red badges. I'm sure we'll never see them again.

I realize that Picard had to bond with Elnor over some sword related literature and the Three Musketeers are a good choice - just a bit 4th wall shattering with D'Artagnan being on the show too.

The Elf vibes are distractingly strong with Elnor. But ST has lacked a cool dude with a sword (bat' leths were never doing it for me).

That tinkling music during the sock-sliding session was really distracting. 

Hello Seven of Nine - I hope you stay around for a while.

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1 hour ago, MissLucas said:

I realize that Picard had to bond with Elnor over some sword related literature and the Three Musketeers are a good choice - just a bit 4th wall shattering with D'Artagnan being on the show too.

Santiago Cabrera played Aramis, not D'Artagnan, but yes the coincidence (deliberate?) was pretty funny.

I liked Elnor.  "I regret your choice".   Senator Romulan had my sympathy until he started beating on a 90-year old dude, so I wasn't sorry to see him losing his head over it.  I saw the elvish thing that others did though, which feels a bit genre-bending.

Agnes could be *really* irritating and it's only the skill of the actress that keeps her on the side of quirky and interesting.  When she interrupted Rios I wanted to smack her for him.  You *never* interrupt someone when they're reading (or doing anything else that they're absorbed in) unless it's an emergency.

Seven! I have a feeling she's going to liven things up a bit.

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5 hours ago, pootlus said:

Santiago Cabrera played Aramis, not D'Artagnan, but yes the coincidence (deliberate?) was pretty funny.

Dang, got my Musketeers confused *hangs head in shame* I wondered what else they could have chosen for Picard to bond with Elnor over sword-fighting. The ones that come to mind are mostly fantasy which does not seem to be in Picard's ballpark.

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9 minutes ago, MissLucas said:

Dang, got my Musketeers confused *hangs head in shame* I wondered what else they could have chosen for Picard to bond with Elnor over sword-fighting. The ones that come to mind are mostly fantasy which does not seem to be in Picard's ballpark.

I think they were going for a French theme, and it made for a nice little link they could use to bond Picard and Elnor: Classic French literature whose protagonists fight with swords - Picard has been known to enjoy fencing and plays at sparring with the kid - kid grows up to be a sword-fighter. That it also served as a little nod to Cabrera's time as a Musketeer made it an additional bonus, and I'm sure they knew what they were doing there. From an interview he did for Da Man magazine (published last week) it sounds like he was brought on board for this show very early on, before they'd even written any scripts, so it seems the character was very much shaped around the actor.

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How did these Romulan ninjas survive? The Tal Shiar could have exterminated them with disruptors from long range. Also, if they only fight for lost causes, all of them should be dead....

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11 minutes ago, paigow said:

How did these Romulan ninjas survive? The Tal Shiar could have exterminated them with disruptors from long range. Also, if they only fight for lost causes, all of them should be dead....

Maybe they are so good that their allegiance turns every lost cause into a winning one? And the Tal Shiar turn into Stormtroopers whenever they try to take them out?

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1 hour ago, paigow said:

How did these Romulan ninjas survive? The Tal Shiar could have exterminated them with disruptors from long range. Also, if they only fight for lost causes, all of them should be dead....

Maybe they never took on the Tal Shiar, at least not en masse. Individuals may have bound their swords to lost causes against the Tal Shiar, but if the warrior nuns as a wider movement kept themselves to themselves, the Tal Shiar would have no reason to move against them - their sights were set elsewhere.

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