TV Review – Star Trek Discovery: Far From Home (That Hope is You, Part 2)

TL;DR – The Discovery is back and has to decide if going in guns blazing or diplomatic is the way forward

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
Star Trek Discovery: Far From Home (That Hope is You, Part 2). Image Credit: CBS Studios.

Far From Home Review –

We continue powering forward in this soft-reboot of Star Trek Discovery as characters continue to crash land into the 3100s. As we go about this week’s episode, we start to see the way this new world works and how it can be used for exploitation. Which means it is a perfect time for some hope.

So to set the scene, in That Hope Is You, Part 1 we get the story of Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) crashing into a planet and trying to re-orientate herself in this new place and time. There was however one big thing missing in the first episode, and that was the USS Discovery itself and all those on-board it. Well, today’s episode wastes no time in revealing what happened to them as they get thrust out on the galaxy onto of a world that was partially blasted. None of the ship’s systems are working, but under the command of Saru (Doug Jones), Lt. Keyla Detmer (Emily Coutts) was able to invert the ship and crash land it on an icy glacier. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.   

Continue reading

TV Review – Star Trek Discovery: That Hope is You, Part 1

TL;DR – A fantastic start to the season full of promise and potential.

Rating: 4 out of 5.
Star Trek Discovery: That Hope is You, Part 1. Image Credit: CBS Studios.

That Hope is You, Part 1 Review

How things have changed, so much has happened since we last checked in with Star Trek Discovery. Since the end of Season Two, we have gotten the fascinating first season of Star Trek Picard, followed by the delightful Star Trek Lower Decks. It has been such a long time since I have been able to talk about this much Star Trek all at once, so you can imagine that it makes me almost giddy with excitement. Today we are going to dive back in with the first episode of Discovery’s third season, the season where everything changes.                   

So to set the scene, at the end of Such Sweet Sorrow the USS Discovery and its crew had to make a tough choice … do they stay or do they go? The ship had to leave on a one way trip to the future (for the why you can read our primer), and everyone in the crew had to decide do they stay with what they know or take a trip into the unknown. Flash forward in a moment, and Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) is crashing out of the wormhole, smashing into Book’s (David Ajala) ship the Nautilus much to the consternation of Grudge (Leeu) and plummeting down to the planet below. After barely dodging significant wreckage in orbit, Burnham is able to take control just before she landed. Her first question: Is there life? ‘Yes’. Where Is the Discovery? … well that one is a bit harder to answer. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.   

Continue reading

The Women of The Expanse

TL;DR – Here we explore the many wonderful women that make up the world of The Expanse.

The Women of The Expanse Article –

We are living in the age of prestige television and among that rise has been a Golden Age for Science Fiction on TV. In that rise, The Expanse has been one major standout and has some of the most rounded and best characters on TV at the moment. Today we are going to explore a facet of The Expanse that has been one of its best factors which is its representation of women. While there have been some great female characters across modern science fiction, in The Expanse we get so many examples throughout the series that it is a prominent part of why the show works as well as it does.

Just one note before we dive in, The Expanse is both a TV series and (first) a series of novels. While the TV series has been a faithful adaptation of the books, there are some character differences between the two. So for the sake of clarity, we will be focusing on the representation in the TV show, this also helps in regards to where we fall with Spoilers. With this in mind, at the time of writing four seasons of the TV show have been released covering Leviathan Wakes, Caliban’s War, Abaddon’s Gate, and Cibola Burn. With that, we will be focusing on those stories, but as Season Five (Nemesis Games) is coming soon, we may make some allusions to content there.

Continue reading

Star Trek Discovery: Season 3 Primer

TL;DR – With the new season starting in a few weeks we catch you up on everything you need to know about Season 3 of Star Trek Discovery (Timeline, plot points, and outstanding questions oh my)

Star Trek Discovery. Image Credit: CBS Studios.

Star Trek Discovery: Season 3 Primer

It is not long until the next season of Star Trek Discovery comes out, and with its big jump and all the new Star Trek and Sci-Fi, we are getting you might need a catch up as to where we are and where we are going. In this primer, we will sum up the critical story posts that led to where we are, give an overview of where all this fits in the timeline, and look at the outstanding questions coming into Season Three.

Continue reading

TV Review – Snowpiercer: Justice Never Boarded

TL;DR – All tease when it probably should be starting to deliver.

Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars

Snowpiercer: Justice Never Boarded, Image Credit: Netflix.

Review – Well, Snowpiercer the show started in an odd place, with a murder-mystery at the core of the narrative. I was not sure how it could all jell together, but as it has continued, those lines in the sand have become more evident as power shifts have come into the light. This brewing tension has led to an interesting premise, though it is still not clear if they can pull it off.

So to set the scene, the Snowpiercer has continued on its journey in the frozen appocalype of Earth, now steaming through the former Amazon. However, for Andre Layton (Daveed Diggs) the discovery that Lilah Jr (Annalise Basso) was the real murderer was not the end of his mission because he stumbled onto something else. For he found out the real power behind Melanie Cavill (Jennifer Connelly) and ended up in the draws for his trouble. However, everything marches on, and there needs to be a trial because there have been murders, and people want justice. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead. 

Continue reading

Video Game Review – XCOM: Chimera Squad

TL;DR – it is a game that is something old (The XCOM Setting) and something new (living rather than waring), something borrowed (SWAT mechanics), and something blue (the face of any enemy who just discovered Torque)  

Score – 4 out of 5 stars

XCOM: Chimera Squad. Image Credit: Firaxis Games and 2K Games.

Review –

If there is one studio that is the king of turn-based strategy games it would be Firaxis Studios. While they are probably better known for their fundamental Civilization franchise, they have also delved into the world of science fiction, alien invasions, and reloading that autosave because your fully upgraded soldier just missed the one guy standing right next to them and now they are bleeding out on the floor. I have enjoyed the XCOM series in the past, okay not that one alien that pretends it’s a civilian, but other than that, so I was interested when I heard we were getting a sort of sequel/spin-off thingy. Well, I became even more interested when I got my hand on it and I found out just how fun it was.  

So to set the scene, It has been a couple of hears since the end of XCOM 2, and the world has sort of found a new equilibrium as humans, aliens, and hybrids live side by side. There is one place in the world that has been remarkably successful with this, the famous City 31. XCOM has moved from overthrowing an alien invasion to helping maintain order in a constantly fragmented world. Thus the Chimera Squad was created to help local police, but just as they arrive the mayor of City 31 Mayor Nightingale (Nika Futterman) is murdered in front of the squad and you have to work out who did it before the city tears itself apart.

Continue reading

TV Review – Star Trek: Picard – Maps and Legends

TL;DR – Here we get to see the drive of the season and some moments that really show who this current Federation is

Score – 4.5 out of 5 stars

Star Trek: Picard – Maps and Legends

Review

After the excellence of the first episode, the next question is can you keep that momentum moving which is a whole new problem all in itself. But if the first episode Remembrance framed this new world, Maps and Legends gave it context as we deal with its fallout.

So to set the scene, we go back in time to the fateful day on Mars when the synthetics attacked. We had seen part of this in the Short Trek Children of Mars, but now we get to see what happened on the ground as the synthetic F8 (Alex Diehl) is hacked and turns on his crew and assists in the destruction of the planet. Meanwhile, Picard (Patrick Stewart) begins his search in earnest to find Dahj’s (Isa Briones) twin sister Soji (Isa Briones) who is currently serving on a derelict Borg cube called ‘The Artefact’. Here he tries to go through the right channels only to get that thrown back in his face. Now we will be looking at the episode as a whole so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.   

Continue reading

Movie Review – Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (Round Two)

TL;DR – This is a film that feels both incredibly safe but yet also incredibly weird and that dissidence is really odd and is enhanced on a second viewing.     

Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. Image Credit: Disney.

Review

I have been thinking a lot about Star Wars in the weeks since I first watched The Rise of Skywalker. Was I too harsh with it? Did I let one story beat distract me from the rest of the film? Do I want to see a buddy cop film starring John Boyega and Oscar Isaac? Okay, that last one was an easy answer, of course, I do. However, for the first two, I was truly left wondering, well that is until yesterday when I went with some friends as saw the same film twice in cinemas (not something I have done in quite a while). Which means it is time to explore if a second viewing of Star Wars helps or hurts it and what I found is that it focuses you into the good, the bad, and the ugly.  

So to set the scene, at the end of The Last Jedi everything is in flux. The Resistance has survived annihilation but has been stretched to almost breaking point as The First Order storms across The New Republic. However, all is not dandy for The First Order as well, as their leader was assassinated by Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) and their main battle cruiser was destroyed. However, just at the cusp of this, a dark voice from the past pierces into the vale. For it appears that Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) has come back from the dead and is gunning for Rey (Daisy Ridley). Now in this review, we will be going FULL SPOILER discussing some really important plot points. If you want to read our spoiler-free review you can find it here.  

Continue reading

TV Review – Star Trek Short Treks: Children of Mars

TL;DR – An emotional gut punch as you watch it all unravel  

Score – 4.5 out of 5 stars

Star Trek Short Treks: Children of Mars. Image Credit: CBS Studios.

Review

Can you tell a compelling and heartfelt narrative in seven minutes with very little dialogue? That would actually be quite a challenge but today we get to look at an episode that does just that as it builds to a moment that breaks you.

So to set the scene, we open in on April the 5th, First Contact Day, a day of celebration but for two girls living in San Francisco it is a day of sadness in part. For Lil (Sadie Munroe) her dad (Jason Deline) is stuck working on the Mars Orbital Facility and can’t make it downwell to see her. On the other side, we have Kima (Ilamaria Ebrahim) whose mom (Joy Castro) also works on Mars at the Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards. In a moment of sadness, Lil accidentally knocks over Kima on the way to the shuttle pick up making Kima late for school and then it all spirals in from there.    

Continue reading

TV Review – Star Trek Short Treks: Ephraim and Dot

TL;DR –  A love letter to the past and a beautiful story in its own right  

Score – 4.5 out of 5 stars

Star Trek Short Treks: Ephraim and Dot. Image Credit: CBS Studios.

Review

It has been a long time since Star Trek ventured into the realm of animation, indeed, The Animated Series to this day fits awkwardly into the Star Trek universe thanks to the question marks as to its canonicity. But today Star Trek takes some steps back unto this uncharted frontier with a Short Trek full of joy and beauty. 

So to set the scene, we open in on a documentary called The Tardigrade in Space as it explores the life of a humble tardigrade Ephraim flying through space looking for a place to lay her eggs. A place that is warm and safe, which is what she found right up until the moment the USS Enterprise appears out of warp and trashes the asteroid she had picked. But then a starship with a nice warm warp reactor would be the perfect place to lay her eggs, unfortunately, a DOT-7 maintenance droid called Dot has different ideas.

Continue reading