April 24, 2024

Gabbing Geek

Your online community for all things geeky.

Weekend Trek “Star Trek: Nemesis”

Picard has this clone...

Well, here it is:  the last Star Trek: The Next Generation movie.  And…eh.

Jimmy and Tom have some thoughts on this last voyage of this crew.  You know, until Star Trek: Picard.

Star Trek: Nemesis

Riker and Troi’s wedding is interrupted by Romulan politics.

jimmy:  I don’t get the universal hatred for this movie. I thought it was alright. Better than Insurrection.  Even Marina Sirtis thinks so!

LeVar Burton is on record as having said that the film “sucked.” Marina Sirtis backed him up, but also quipped “it sucked less than Insurrection.”

tomk:  So that’s your criteria now?  Is it better than Insurrection?

jimmy:  Not a criteria. Just an opinion.

Apparently the cast was not a fan of the new director who had never seen an episode of TNG. Especially LeVar Burton, who he kept calling “Laverne”.

tomk:  Considering a farewell scene for Crusher and Picard’s greeting his new first officer was cut for some reason, I think it’s safe to say this movie might be a bit of a mess.

jimmy:  Yeah, there’s no mention in the film of Crusher leaving to go back to Starfleet medical.

And the new first officer scene was probably a better ending with this being the final TNG Trek film, but they had planned on doing one more.

tomk:  So, fun fact about the directors: he’s mostly known as an editor.  He worked on Christopher Reeves’s first Superman, a couple Lethal Weapon movies, and at least one Die Hard but got an Oscar Nomination for Gorillas is the Mist.

Screenwriter John Logan has writing credits on GladiatorThe Last Samurai, Skyfall, and The Aviator. Plus, he created the great gothic horror series Penny Dreadful.

And they also made Star Trek: Nemesis.

jimmy:  I was surprised Frakes wasn’t back. But apparently the producers wanted some fresh blood, and Frakes was busy directing something else, so who couldn’t do it anyway.

tomk:  He was probably directing an episode of Enterprise. But Burton, Dorn, Stewart, and McFadden all directed episodes of TNG, DS9, or Voyager and were right there.

jimmy:  Fresh.  Blood.

tomk:  Like Tom Hardy?

jimmy:  Complete unknown Tom Hardy.

tomk:  And he was never heard from again.

jimmy:  Nope.

tomk:  Especially with news Patrick Stewart will be Eddie Brock’s father in Venom 3.

jimmy:  Why do you make up such lies?

Though Stewart did think we’d never hear of Hardy again.

tomk:  I know that thing about Stewart, and that’s the reason I make up such lies.

jimmy:  And it sorta fits with the plot of this movie with him being the “father”.

tomk:  Also, it means Picard was not the last Picard.

jimmy:  He is now.

tomk:  Until the other Reman clone shows up played by Vin Diesel.

jimmy:  That was the plot of the unmade next TNG movie.

tomk:  That one would be all about family.

jimmy:  Picard needs new family now with Data, Riker, Troi and Crusher gone.

tomk:  And Worf presumably is still the Ambassador to Qo’noS.

jimmy:  Speaking of Worf, when the movie started and he was at Riker and Troi’s wedding, I was like, “see, this is how you have him show up organically!”  And then as the movie went on I realized that DS9 must have been over and he had rejoined the crew of the Enterprise.

tomk:  Admiral Janeway should have been a sign Voyager was over, and DS9 ended before that show.

But DS9 ended with Worf’s being made ambassador to the Klingon Empire.

jimmy:  Yes, as I watched I realized where it was in the timeline, especially with the Janeway appearance.

tomk:  And then when you realized Worf was really Odo in disguise because Worf and Quark when undercover with the Doctor (and his mobile emitter) to infiltrate the Romulan high command with Tom Paris as their getaway driver, you really put it all together.

jimmy:

tomk:  Unfortunately, all those scenes, including a trip to the Trill homeworld and B’Elanna Torres’s joining the House of Martok all hit the cutting room floor with Crusher’s farewell scene.

jimmy:  I must have missed those on the Blu-ray.

tomk:  There was a whole extra hour of excitement trimmed.  Couldn’t be helped.

jimmy:  You say that, but the first cut of the movie was about 2:45 and they trimmed it down to just under 2 hours.

tomk:  Well then, maybe I didn’t make all that stuff up.

jimmy:  I don’t remember them all. Some were inconsequential, but there were some nice character moments. Like a scene between Picard and Data with Picard trying to explain why people at weddings or funerals, etc could be happy and sad at the same time.

tomk:  And probably all of Wil Wheaton’s spoken lines.

jimmy:  Yes. He only had one scene, which didn’t amount to much, but he was back in Starfleet and joining Riker’s crew on the Titan.

tomk:  I should check for him the next time Riker’s Titan appears on Lower Decks.

jimmy:  I really need to watch that.

tomk:  Yes, you probably should.

jimmy:  Another scene was Geordi and Worf cleaning out Data’s quarters after his death.  Spot jumps up in Worf’s arms and he says “I’m not a cat person.”  Geordi says, “you are now.”

tomk:  Yeah, don’t give Spot to B-4.  That animal would be dead within the week.

jimmy:  B-4 would hug him and pet him and squeeze him.

tomk:  And call him George?

jimmy:  No, Tom, his name is Spot.

tomk:  They should probably give Spot to Picard. He always treats everyone and everything with respect just like the actor who plays him.

jimmy:  Says video is not available, so I’ll take your word for it.

tomk:  Well, it is a Super Bowl ad. You can probably see it later.

jimmy:  For this year’s game?

tomk:  Yes.

I think.  Paramount only recently released it.

jimmy:  Then I probably will.

tomk:  And you have also seen…this movie!

jimmy:  I have!

So, the much criticized dune buggy scene didn’t bother me. Though the jump into the shuttlecraft was a bit much.

tomk:  That’s because you forgot you weren’t watching a Mad Max movie.  Also, did that count as First Contact?

jimmy:  You lost me.

tomk:  That dune buggy scene sure was a lot like, well, any Mad Max movie.  And if those aliens never met a human before, does that count as First Contact?  Did Picard break the Prime Directive to go muddin’?

jimmy:  That’s what I thought you meant, but capitalizing First Contact made me think you were talking about the movie.

But possibly, yes. I don’t remember if they said it was inhabited or not, but you’d think they would have scanned for life signs and not just android parts.

tomk:  They did say it was inhabited by a pre-warp civilization or some such.

jimmy:  Oh, yeah. You’re right.

tomk:  I’m just thinking of the pains Kirk went to in Star Trek into Darkness to hide from an alien society and prevent First Contact.  Here, Picard just jumps in the car and goes for a run while Worf shoots at them.

jimmy:  It was too late by that point.

tomk:  Maybe they should have tried beaming the android parts into the ship between blasts of the storms that interfered with the transporter.

jimmy:  But then Picard wouldn’t have gotten to drive around in a custom dune buggy and its accompanying shuttlecraft that they just had on board for reasons.

tomk:  He also has a personal “captain’s yacht” on board to go riding around space in.  It doesn’t come up often, but I think Voyager and, believe it or not, Lower Decks have both made mention of this perk.

jimmy:  I thought it was funny in Insurrection when the stretchy face guys made reference to the Captain’s Yacht. Like, how would they know what it was called?

tomk:  Well, it’s Picard’s, so it probably has a name like The Chateau or something.

jimmy:  Le Chateau.

tomk:  Oh, look at you with your knowledge of basic French, Mr. Canadian Citizen.

jimmy:  You’d be surprised at how little French I know.

tomk:  Do you know a little German?

jimmy:  lol

tomk:  I’m guessing that’s a “no.”

jimmy:  I know more French than German.

tomk:  Do you know more Star Trek than Star Wars?

jimmy:  Hmm.  Maybe?  I’ve watched more hours of Trek.

tomk:  Do you know more Simpsons than Spider-Man?

jimmy:  That’s an interesting one. I’ll go Spidey. I still have like a dozen or more seasons of The Simpsons to watch.

tomk:  And do you know more Watson than paralyzing existential dread?

jimmy:  Aren’t they synonymous?

tomk:  You’d be surprised.

jimmy:  Not surprising, is that this movie failed at the box office. Besides the critical drubbing, they hardly positioned it for success, going head to head with Harry Potter, a Bond film and a Lord of the Rings.

tomk:  That…was a dumb idea.

jimmy:  Right?  Unless they were thinking of it as counter programming…but the audiences there are too intermingled.

tomk:  Well, they had the one major British actor who has never been in any of those franchises.

jimmy:  And never was.

tomk:  You didn’t see he was McKellan’s stunt double on The Hobbit?

jimmy:  I didn’t.  Interesting.

tomk:  And he may be Daniel Craig’s replacement as 007.

jimmy:  He might be a little old for that.  In fact, he was starting to look old in this one.  He was in his early 60s.  Spiner was really aged out of playing Data at this point too.  He was in his early 50s.

tomk:  Heck, Riker and Troi are probably too old to be young newlyweds.

jimmy:  But not too old to be newlyweds.  BTW, at the time, Frakes was 50 and Sirtis was 47.

tomk:  And she had a sheet over her in the sex scene.

jimmy:  It’s still a PG-13 Star Trek movie.

tomk:  They could have done a better job hiding the sheet.

jimmy:  Maybe if Frakes directed.

tomk:  You’re right. Not an Oscar nominated editor.

jimmy:  He had directed Executive Decision and U.S. Marshalls before this.

tomk:  You know what he hasn’t directed?  A good Star Trek movie.

jimmy:  And never will.

tomk:  That seems cruelly accurate.

jimmy:  He’s 77 and Nemesis was the last movie he directed.

tomk:  He’s probably trying to arrange the next Jimmy Impossible Dance Party but keeps inviting weirdos.

jimmy:  She’s welcome anytime.

tomk:  She just raided your donut stash and drank all your beer.

jimmy:  That’s cool.

tomk:  Then she tricked the Moose into bashing through a wall of your mancave.

jimmy:  I’ve been meaning to expand.

tomk:  Then she told the Ms. you were meeting Cousin Minka for drinks.

jimmy:  It’s a good thing this is the last Trek movie as I’ll soon be dead.

tomk:  Gee, invite the right guest over, and you get a lot more optimistic. I see she also brought Watson over.

jimmy:  She’s banned for life.

tomk:  If it’s your life, and you’re going to be dead soon, that may not be for very long.

jimmy:  Geez. Tom Buzzkillington.

tomk:  Fine. She actually brought Emma Watson and Patrick Stewart.

jimmy:  Great way to clue up these chats!

tomk:  Your responses reminded me of something else.

jimmy:  Nobody’s perfect.

tomk:  Not even Batman?

jimmy:  Not even Batman.

tomk:  Do you care to respond to that, Batman?

jimmy:  I was just kidding, Batman!

tomk:  Batman forgives you.

jimmy:  Phew.

tomk:  Now he demands you dance with his grandpa.

jimmy:  How come Batman doesn’t dance anymore?

tomk:  You wanna ask him?

jimmy:  Maybe we should get back to Trek?

tomk:  Good idea. Ask Worf about his dancing.

jimmy:  I know he somehow knows Irving Berlin.

tomk:  Q probably knew Irving Berlin personally.

jimmy:  Was he a Q?

tomk:  No, but Qs get around.

jimmy:  And this is the last the TNG crew gets around for over 20 years.

tomk:  Well, now I’m sad.

jimmy:  But you’ll be happy when they reunite in 20 years.

tomk:  From now?

jimmy:  From then.

tomk:  So we’re doing that next time?

jimmy:  I almost feel like watching Picard with TNG now fresh in my head, but you’re the conductor on this ride.

tomk:  I am?

I thought TNG was your idea.

jimmy:  It was. But, you’ve been our guide through the stars.

tomk:  Fine. Time for a pop quiz. What do you think was Picard’s finest moment?

jimmy:  Huh. Well, the “four lights” comes to mind.

tomk:  I’m sorry.  The correct answer is when he started laughing over the Irish stereotypes of the Lucky Charms Colony because even in-character, Stewart knew that was ridiculous. Same question for Riker.

jimmy:  “Fire.”

tomk:  I’m sorry. The correct answer is when he forgot who he was and slept with Ro. How about Beverly Crusher?

jimmy:  Every episode where she wasn’t having sex with a space ghost.

tomk:  Judges?

Ok, that’s one right. Same question for Geordi.

jimmy:  Turning into a lizard man?

tomk:  Ooooh, close. It was the time Riker had Q powers and all Geordi did when he could see was tell Tasha she was beautiful. Same question for Data.

jimmy:  When he showed Tasha she was beautiful.

tomk:  You would go for the fully functional aspect.

But the correct answer is when the holodeck malfunctioned to make a bunch of Ancient West Datas, and one of them was a well-endowed woman who gave Worf a hug. Same question for Worf.

jimmy:  That is a good Data choice.

Worf eh?  He’s the MVP, so, everything?

tomk:  Might have to give it to you on a technicality. The correct answer is the time he expressed confidence in Tasha’s abilities before some kind of martial arts tournament, foreshadowing that blob was going to kill her later in the episode . Same question for Tasha.

jimmy:  Going back in time in “Yesterday’s Enterprise“.

tomk:  I’m sorry.  The correct answer was when she gave Picard funny looks in the final episode. Same question for Wesley.

jimmy:  This is a tough quiz.

tomk:  If they were easy, they wouldn’t challenge anyone.

jimmy:  That time when his science experiment put the ship in danger and/or saved the ship.

tomk:  Close. The correct answer is when he appeared on Picard. Same question for Dr. Pulaski.

jimmy:  When she fell down the turbolift shaft?

tomk:  Correct.

jimmy:  w00t!

tomk:  Same question for Q.

jimmy:  When he lost his powers?

tomk:  Good guess. The correct answer is when he turned Beverly into an Irish setter. How about O’Brien?

jimmy:  When he went to DS9 without even a phone call.

tomk:  I’m sorry. The correct answer was when he had to deal with the fact his wife was de-aged to a ten-year-old. How about Ensign Ro?

jimmy:  When she forgot who she was and slept with Riker.

tomk:  Correct. We would also have accepted the time she came back for a spinoff episode that didn’t go anywhere.

And now, for all the points…Troi.

jimmy:  Picard season 3?

tomk:  Judges?

jimmy:  Looks like a win to me.

tomk:  That’s right, Jimmy: you won.  And let me tell you what you’ve won: a case of Turtlewax, a set of the Encyclopedia International, and a year’s supply of Rice O Roni, the San Francisco treat. But that’s not all!  You’ve also made yourself look like a winner in front of theoretically millions of people, and you’ve brought pride and honor to your family name for generations to come. You’re a complete winner!

jimmy:  We have millions of readers?

tomk:  Theoretically.

jimmy:  

tomk:  Did you have anything to say about Shinzon?

jimmy:  Probably the most understandable Tom Hardy has ever been.

tomk:  You didn’t understand him in Inception or Dunkirk?

jimmy:  I don’t remember.

tomk:  And you didn’t understand him when he delivered the donuts for your stash while researching a role?

jimmy:  No. They were bagels.

tomk:  At least they weren’t beagles.

jimmy:  But, Hardy was ok. Nothing special. Looked nothing like Patrick Stewart.

tomk:  They should have just let Stewart play duel roles.  Besides, didn’t Picard have hair in the flashbacks showing when he got that artificial heart?

jimmy:

tomk:  Yes, that guy.

jimmy:  As opposed to:

Thought that does look more like Patrick Stewart.

tomk:  Huh.  Familiar.

jimmy:  That’s a much older person than the one in Starfleet Academy.

tomk:  No, I just think Bald Hardy looks more like Bald McAvoy.

jimmy:  All bald people look the same.

tomk:  You’re right.  They really should have just cast this guy as Clone Picard:

I mean, look at the similarities:

jimmy:  That’s Picard in the Short Stocky Bald Man timeline.

tomk:  If he’s funny, he has a chance with Aunt May.

jimmy:  Not bad.

tomk:  What?  You wish Patrick Stewart was Uncle Ben in a movie?

jimmy:  You wouldn’t?

tomk:  Maybe.

jimmy:  I’d watch that.

tomk:  You’d watch anything with Patrick Stewart and Spider-Man.

jimmy:  True.

tomk:  Unless it also featured Watson.

And I don’t mean Mary-Jane.

jimmy:  That would hurt the box office.

tomk:  And a lot of eyeballs.

jimmy:  Also true.

tomk:  Well, this has been fun. Should we grade the movie?

jimmy:  Hit me.

tomk:  7.5 out of 10 moments when you realize B-4 is kinda useless.

jimmy:  I thought you’d be lower.  I’ll go with 8 out of 10 how awkward would it have been getting everyone together in the same place if they had made another movie?

tomk:  Nemesis is not without its charms. It’s still better than Star Trek V.

jimmy:  Speaking at length to Watson is better than Star Trek V.

tomk:  Watson sometimes holds Star Trek V as a good movie.

jimmy:  He would.

tomk:  He also probably secretly loves Canada.

jimmy:  Highly unlikely.

One last comment before we wrap up.  In my mind’s eye the finale of Nemesis will always be the deleted scene where the new first officer is introduced.  There’s a farewell to Riker, a changing of the guard and it ends with what remains of the old crew integrating with the new crew.  Picard is talking about their next mission as the dialogue fades and the Next Generation theme comes up.  The camera pulls back out of the bridge and settles on a shot of the Enterprise-E boldly going where no one has gone before.

It really fits well with this ending up as the final movie in the original timeline, and the last we see of the Next Generation crew until they get a proper send off in Picard.

tomk:  

Why the hell did they cut that?

jimmy:  Right?!?

The only thing I can think is that they were planning a new film, and the B-4 ending left things much more open ended, whereas this felt like a finale.  But who knows.  Blame the guy who had never seen an episode of TNG before directing.

tomk:  I mean, I would think all kinds of people had questions about that.

jimmy:  lol

tomk:  No wonder we needed that third season of Picard to actually give these characters a good send-off.

jimmy:  20 years too late, but we’ll take it.

tomk:  jimmy:  So…what now?

tomk:  Um…you know what we should watch?  This great animated series Avatar: The Last Airbender!

jimmy:  I’ve heard good things about that!

tomk:  Yeah!

There’s also a potential return to Young Justice if Canadian streaming services finally got their act together.

jimmy:  TBD

tomk:  Well, I mean, we could watch Picard, but would watching that so soon to finishing the original make the newer show seem better or worse by comparison?

jimmy:  That’s a good question. And surely our theoretical million readers don’t care what we do next and just want us to wrap it up.

I will say it’s unfortunate that the TNG films weren’t better overall, but they hit a grand slam with First Contact.

tomk:  Well, we may want to consider a few other options.

jimmy:  Such as?

tomk:  Well, I’m probably replacing The X-Files with the various animated Star Wars series, so that’s probably out.

jimmy:  We can do Young Justice, I just have to work out some semantics.

tomk:  I figure we have two other options.  We can try the old X-Men animated series to prep for the relaunch.  Or, there’s this show I can personally vouch for:

jimmy:  I know nothing about that show, but I have been planning to rewatch X-Men either way.   Whatever you want to do.

tomk:  I figure it’s up to you either way, Jimmy.  C’mon.  Make a choice.  What are you gonna do?  Rewatch DS9 on your own and then comment on my old articles?

jimmy:  …I was planning to do that…minus the comments.

tomk:  OK, how about this:  we can do X-Men, and Gravity Falls can follow up The Last Airbender since the tone might fit that better since Gravity Falls is basically a kid-friendly, comedic take on something like The X-Files.

Both should be on D+ anyway.

jimmy:  I like it!

tomk:  You like many things.  Like how Jenny and Jonathan managed to breed a hot dog tree.

jimmy:  Who wouldn’t like that?

tomk:  Vegetarians?

jimmy:  Well played, Lisa.

tomk:  Now let’s all get drunk and play ping pong!

jimmy:

tomk:  Because, you know, there’s no connection between Patrick Stewart and the X-Men.

jimmy:  Some version of the X-Men anyway.

tomk:  So, I guess we better get going unless you have one last comment to make about TNG.

jimmy:  I’m good. Had my last say above. I’m glad I rewatched it though. Still enjoyable.

tomk:  And since you still probably can’t find Babylon 5, it’s on to the merry mutants of Marvel, a group of characters who are always happy-go-lucky and never have a reason to complain about anything.

jimmy:  Engage!

Coming soon!

Tom and Jimmy cover X-Men: The Animated Series!