Posts Tagged ‘Television’

Star Trek: TNG – Devil’s Due

December 30, 2011

I have a new post up at Minnesota Skeptics about a particularly skeptical episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation! Here’s an excerpt:

Upon the away team’s arrival on the surface, Ardra herself appears to the crew and the Ventaxian leader to claim “her planet”. Ardra is able to instantaneously change her appearance, to cause tremors to start and stop at her command, and she even makes the entire Enterprise starship disappear!  But Captain Picard smells a phony. He describes Ardra as being a flim flam artist to his crew, and accuses her of being a fake in front of the Ventaxians.

To read the rest of my article, please go here to the Minnesota Skeptics blog.

Oh, oh! But I also have to share a fabulous website that I found while looking for images of Ardra. It’s called Fashion It So, and it’s written by two people who are watching Star Trek: The Next Generation for the clothes. Well, I’m guessing they’re watching it because they geek on Star Trek: TNG, but the blog is all about the fashion.

They make off-hand horrifyingly blasphemous (to TNG fans) remarks such as the following in bold:

“We never see these aliens not on their ship (they had a name but I realized I don’t care and neither should you) so getting a great look at their outfits is pretty tricky, but I think we can all agree there’s nothing to see here.”

But since they were discussing the Pakleds, you have to agree with the fashion assessment. And really that’s all the writers are making claims about, so why stick it to them on nerd details? And I get the feeling that these guys do have some geek/nerd cred. I spotted one reference to X-Files, they make some horribly punny jokes, and the most recent entry (yesterday) is a repost of three TNG action figures filmed in stop-action to Beyonce Knowles’s Single Ladies.

As an aside, my favorite description of Ardra’s outfit was

“OF COURSE bitch looks amazing. She’s the devil! So she rolls up in a fucking LEATHER JUMPSUIT with some goddamn CHIFFON attached to just the back of her pant legs, like she couldn’t decide if she was racing dirtbikes or going to the ballet.”

Go. Visit their website. Enjoy.

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TV Good

September 29, 2010

Oh hai!  Here I am!

On Monday night I entered the timedrain called House M.D., Season 6. 

On Sunday I bought the 22-episode set from Target.  I had a very nice gift card to spend and there was apparently nothing more useful or relevant to my life that I needed from the Target superstore. 

The Hubby was scheduled to go out of town on business for the week, so I figured I would use the five days to watch the hell out of Season 6 while he was gone.  I also bought some of the food that I love – and he does not – to eat while he was gone: Ham sandwich meat, tofu, artichoke, brussel sprouts.  Yum!

I neglected the blog these last two days, it’s true.  House is like vicodin crack and I’ve literally been watching it from the time I get home from work until I go to bed.  I watched five hours of House on Monday night.  I watched three episodes last night.

Watching a TV series is like a chore – a lovely, wonderful, enjoyable chore – or a box on a checklist that I want to mark off so I can move on with my life.  I rarely re-watch movies, I just want to take in the story and be done.  I kinda wish more of my favorite TV shows were two-hour long movies.  

This is why I’ve begun to resist starting shows that I think I would love: Chuck, How I Met Your Mother, Big Bang Theory, MythBusters.  And I’ve put the kabash on continuing some shows that I started and know I loved: BattleStar Galactica, Glee, Will and Grace, CSI: Las Vegas, Eureka, 24.  We don’t have regular TV access; everything we do watch is very deliberately downloaded from Hulu or Netflix Instant Watch.  Not having television makes it much harder to get exposed – and addicted – to new shows.

This fascination with stories is also why I’m not a gamer…I would be That Gamer who doesn’t leave the house until I solved the game.  Hell, as a kid I stayed glued to Super Mario Bros 3 for about a week until I thought I had unlocked every secret, and then I bought the cheat book and played again from the beginning.  There’s no way I could take on an adult video game and not starve to death (new diet???).  And forget about games that have no end, like WoW  – that would be my undoing.  I want spend my time getting ready to go back to school and going on trips and volunteering and doing active outdoorsy activities.  So instead I’m minimizing my TV watching, and I shall try to focus my efforts elsewhere.

You know…after I’m done with House.  

~~~~~

Dr. House: We are selfish, base animals crawling across the earth, but ’cause we’ve got brains, if we try really hard, we can usually aspire to something that is less than pure evil.

Season 3, episode 12 “One Day, One Room”

Dah-link, it’s been ages!

March 31, 2010

I want a computer in my brain.  Sign me up – I’ll be an early adopter for that one. 

I’ve been housesitting since last Thursday, and I haven’t had access to my desktop computer, so my online activity has taken a dive.  I do have my iPod Touch, and the house in which I’m staying has wireless, but everything was so slow…and the keys are so small…and everything’s in mobile content mode…ugh.  Very little Facebook, no checking my favorite blogs, and no additions to my personal blog.  It’s all very sad.  So, I’m writing a quick update via the ol’ office ‘puter just to let you all know that everything’s fine…life is good. 

I unexpectedly earned a little bit of money – just enough that I’ll be able to visit Mom in Europe this summer!  She’s taking a month-long class in Italy, and on either side of that she’ll have some vacation time.  I wanted to join her, but wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to manage it financially, so this was very exciting.

Housesitting is going well.  I’m living in Burnsville this week with my friend’s daughter, and four cats and a dog.  The daughter has her driver’s license and access to a car, so I don’t see her much.  Also, my second job at the bookstore is minimizing our face-to-face time, so we’re doing a lot of note-leaving and texting.  Last night was cool though: We both had the night at home so we had Taco Tuesday and vegged all night long.  Seriously, I haven’t watched that much TV…well, probably since the one time I was fired, and totally depressed, and I watched all 24 hours of 24…in 24 hours (well…22-23 hours with commercials, probably).   

One of the shows we watched was CSI: Special Victims Unit.  Last night’s episode presented some of the same topics that I just finished reading about in Half the Sky.  This is an incredible book  about the injustices and inequities suffered by women throught southeast Asia, the Middle East and Africa.  The book focused on forced prostitution in SE Asia, rape as a weapon of war in Africa, repression of women in the Middle East, female circumcision, maternal mortality, and how lack of education is probably the number one issue contributing to subjugation, abuse and death of women the world over.  The book also focuses on how each and every person in this world can take a stand against these injustices.  It is a brutal and inspiring book.

So, in this episode of CSI: SVU, a woman was raped and another woman walked in on the attack.  The witness grabbed the man off of the victim and punched him in the face.  Turns out that the witness was an illegal immigrant from Congo (i.e., Democratic Republic of Congo) who was a victim of rape by a rebel army.  Her and her five year old daughter were raped in front of her husband, who fled while the rebels were attacking his family.  The daughter died as a result of the attack.  The man returned home afterwards and cast his wife out because of the shame she brought to the family by being raped.  The woman escaped to a refuge camp, which was later attacked by a (US-defined) terrorist group.  All of the women were raped and forced to marry soldiers and leaders of the terrorist group.

So…cheery… 

But very, very good to see.  The more we hear, and the more we learn about these unbelievable  (to us in industrialized countries) circumstances in which our fellow human beings are existing, the more able and likely we’ll be to put our heads, hearts and hands together to end this barbarism. 

I’m currently researching a microfinancing website called Kiva (kiva.org).  Microfinancing is so simple a solution to poverty and inequity as to be mind-boggling (so simple, that there’s an app for that, literally). 

The College of Wikipedia textbook says this about microfinance:

Microfinance is the provision of financial services to low-income clients, including consumers and the self-employed, who traditionally lack access to banking and related services.

More broadly, it is a movement whose object is “a world in which as many poor and near-poor households as possible have permanent access to an appropriate range of high quality financial services, including not just credit but also savings, insurance, and fund transfers.” Those who promote microfinance generally believe that such access will help poor people out of poverty.

There was an entire section about microfinance in Half the Sky, and I’ve just picked up a copy of Banker to the Poor, by Muhammed Yunus, who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006 for his efforts in microfinance.  Kiva is a microfinance organization that lets anyone provide lending to projects or groups in any area of the world.  Check it out – it will blow your mind.

Religion is fantastic…

January 17, 2010

I’m a fan of Cougar Town – the writing really cracks me up.  Sure, it’s brain fluff, but moderation and all that.

And on episode 12 “Scare Easy”, religion got a total shout out:

The characters
Jules – 40-year old divorcee trying to re-enter the dating world.
Ellie – best friend of Jules

The scene
Restaurant.  Jules and current boy-crush (Jeff) are on a double date with Ellie and her hubby.  Jeff has just announced his desire to “go steady” with Jules and then runs to gulp some wine at the bar.  Dopey subordinate hubby has just been ordered by Ellie to go on a restaurant walk to let the girls talk.

ELLIE: (completely excited about Jeff’s announcement) What do you think?

JULES:  I don’t know!  I really like Jeff, and I’m not dating anyone else.  I mean, not that I would date two guys at the same time anyway because in grade school this nun told me that if I kissed two boys in the same day, their spit would mix in my mouth and it would kill me.

ELLIE: (In a hushed, awed voice): Religion is fantastic.