Review: ‘Star Trek: Lower Decks’ Drinks The Bloodwine, Skips The Jamaharon In “Envoys”

“Envoys”

Star Trek: Lower Decks Season 1, Episode 2 – Debuted Thursday, August 13th, 2020
Written by Chris Kula
Directed by Kim Arndt 

SPOILER-FREE REVIEW

The second episode of this new animated series settles nicely into a rhythm, delivering character and situational comedy, with a more tempered pace than the jam-packed pilot. The humor both draws from and comments on the lore of Star Trek, but casual fans and even non-fans should still be able to enjoy the ride.

“Envoys” — Pictured Jack Quaid as Ensign Brad Boimler

 

WARNING: Spoilers below!

RECAP

Play ball

Once again Lower Decks kicks off an episode by twisting a classic Trek trope, this time starting with the USS Cerritos being infiltrated by a malicious glowing energy being. But before the transdimensional thing even has a chance to possess or impregnate any members of the crew, Mariner and Tendi wrestle it into a container and force it to do their bidding. For an ensign, Mariner’s quick action again shows an impressive level of cunning and street smarts (corridor smarts?), but having the being make a tricorder for her was a surprise. Sure it had a cool purple stripe, but picking a mundane functional device hints that Boimler’s lack of imagination may be rubbing off on her.

And with half-hour episodes, it appears Tendi questioning the ethics of trapping a sentient being just won’t have time to be explored. And declarations of “Behold and tremble!” and “I will destroy you!” aren’t helping its case. Once dismissed by the ensigns, the weakened energy creature was summarily snuffed out by the captain strolling by, spitballing “It’s warp time!” as a possible bridge catchphrase. We get it. On Lower Decks, no trope is safe.

After just two outings, these fun teasers with character moments that aren’t tied into the stories for the rest of the episode are reminiscent of the cold opens on the popular NBC workplace sitcom Brooklyn Nine-Nine. Taking that show analogy a little further, B99 fans may see Lower Decks’ Mariner as a female version of the plays-by-his-own-rules Jake Peralta, with Boimler the male version of the bookish Amy Santiago. This analysis could go much deeper, but that would take all day. And yes, that is the title of a sex tape.

This ball of energy picked the wrong ship

Blood whine

“Envoys” sends our Odd Couple of Boimler and Mariner on what should be a routine escort mission but turns into another adventure full of bonding, self-discovery, and more light phasering. Boimler is excited to put his study of alien cultures and shuttle simulator time to good use to take Klingon General K’orin down to the bustling exotic planet of Tulgana IV. His recently self-minted mentor Mariner gets herself assigned to the same mission—as pilot, no less, making Brad her “co”—, and of course, it turns out she and the General go way back. The old friends spend the trip down singing Klingon drinking songs while Boimler stews and tries to figure out where they got flagons for their bloodwine on a Federation shuttle.

Brad is still trying to ascertain how his contemporary has such a deep history, especially one that includes “blood bonding” with Klingons in “off-the-books grey ops” before joining Starfleet. In just a couple of episodes, the layers of the Mariner onion seem to have no end. Throughout this episode, voice actor Jack Quaid finds whole new ways to whine as Boimler is tested by the planet and his partner.

After landing in Little Qo’noS to get K’orin some gagh, Boimler and Mariner are left behind when K’orin steals the shuttle (and is clearly driving drunk), sending the ensigns on a chase to find him and get him to the Federation embassy before anyone finds out they lost a Klingon dignitary. The search takes the pair from alien neighborhood to alien neighborhood, with each turning more and more dangerous, pitting Boimler’s book-learning against Mariner’s practical experience.

Even though Brad bristles at Beckett Fed-splaining alien cultures to him, it soon becomes clear that he has a lot to learn in ways that will never come from a PADD. But Boimler shows his genuine Starfleet idealism, imploring Mariner with “Don’t hit him, we have a treaty” even while a giant blue Taxor is choking the life out of him.

After almost succumbing to fatal jamaharon with a telepathic lays-eggs-in-your-throat Anabaj and getting injured after starting a brawl in a seedy Andorian bar, Brad is ready to throw in the towel. To be fair, in that last case it was understandable; he was lured into helping an old Andorian who moaned Boimler’s catchphrase “my bones!” as he was being brutalized, but was soon revealed to be a shapeshifting Vendorian thief, in a moment that had fans of Star Trek: The Animated Series reenacting the pointing Rick Dalton meme. While the humor and story should be entertaining to any fan of comedies, Lower Decks keeps rewarding regular viewers and Star Trek superfans with these extra layers.

At this point Boimler has lost all hope: “All that studying and where did it get me?” Tulgana IV has broken the ensign. But things change with their final alien encounter. This time it’s a sketchy Ferengi, and Boimler uses his knowledge of planetary protocol to suss out that he isn’t really offering them a ride.

After Boimler phasers the knife out the conniving Ferengi’s hand and leaves him behind to do “that greedy thing they do with their hands,” the pair finds the shuttle with a passed out Klingon general in the back. With his nerdy mojo back, Boimler starts to see things Mariner’s way: Even though dumping the drunk warrior as-is on the Embassy’s doorstep isn’t the Starfleet way, it’s the best plan they have before returning to the ship.

If we don’t turn around maybe he will go away

Think of the children

The B-story for the episode revolved around a planned hang for Rutherfod and Tendi to observe the Trivoli Pulsar. This friendship between Sam and D’Vana picks up on a spark seen in episode one but still remains adorkably platonic, for now. The problem to solve here was that stargazing conflicted with some exciting EPS conduit recalibration on Rutherford’s schedule. No, really! He is genuinely giddy to spend three more days in the Jefferies tubes, adding on to the week he has already devoted to the ship’s conduits. This guy really loves conduits.

His radical solution to resolving the schedule conflict is to explore a career change so he can keep his plans with Tendi. This was a clever way for the show to explore the ship and senior officers with Rutherford as a sort of guide, and Eugene Cordero’s aw-shucks enthusiasm elevates the storyline to a delight.

The now-former engineer’s first stop is command training with Commander Ransom. In what may be the funniest—and simultaneously most tragic—sequence of the episode, Rutherford runs through two command simulations with disastrous results both times. It’s hard to judge which was worse, the first go-through with the loss of 105% (you read that right) of the crew, or the second one, where a frazzled lieutenant gives a play-by-play as more and more of the ship’s children are ejected into space, complete with LCARS graphic showing the horror of it all.

Ransom shows his enthusiasm for bridge duty and a morbid curiosity at just how badly Rutherford can do, and suggests the ensign try another command simulation with a ship that has even more children. This all felt like a bit of a nod to the debatable question of why starships in the TNG era had families with children on board.

Things don’t go any better when Rutherford swaps a red uniform for a blue one. In sickbay, Dr. T’Ana is impressed with Sam’s ability to see the body as just another machine until he displays an abrupt bedside manner than makes her seem like a pussycat. Rutherford appears to find a new home after passing Shaxs’ no-win Borg fighting scenario, which he does win, thanks to his cybernetic implant. The security “bear pack” embraces him, but the lure of the tubes is too much as he declares, “My heart is in engineering.”

Geordi would never tolerate this mess

An Orion and a Cyborg walk into a bar

Once again the episode wraps up with some bonding in the ship’s bar. Boimler has quickly abandoned his “circle of trust” promise, regaling the patrons with the story of how Mariner thought a Ferengi was a Bolian. And in case it wasn’t obvious enough, we soon get confirmation that the whole thing was actually orchestrated by Beckett, with a little help from her Ferengi actor friend Quimp, who is revealed to speak the Queen’s English. Mariner is making good on her vow to be a mentor to Boimler, giving him just what he needs when he loses faith in his mission to be a Starfleet officer. A Ferengi in a monocle is funny, but the message is still heartwarming.

As for Rutherford, all the worry about not being able to meet up with Tendi for the Pulsar viewing melts away after he confesses he’s sticking with engineering. She literally has his back as they share a final moment in one of Rutherford’s beloved tubes, each engrossed in their own passions, but together. It’s all a bit tidy, and perhaps a bit hokey, but maybe that was the point.

I quit my job and killed all those kids for no reason?

ANALYSIS

Roddenberry box-ing

It is said that drama requires conflict, and it can also be true for comedy. Shows from I Love Lucy to The Office have thrived by finding humor in character clashes.

When it came to Star Trek: The Next Generation, the show that is the inspirational core of Lower Decks, there were strict protocols set up by the show’s creator. The so-called “Roddenberry Box” restricted writers from creating significant conflict within the crew, looking for it exclusively from outside adversaries. Some Star Trek writers have decried these limitations and today’s Star Trek dramas have adopted modern techniques of finding dramatic conflict with everyone, everywhere.

But the more we explore Lower Decks, the more it demonstrates an enthusiasm to live within Gene’s TNG constraints. There were many moments within the episode where it seemed there would be character conflict, especially between Rutherford and the various senior officers. That would be the typical thing to do with a workplace comedy, setting up tension between heroic employees and their dumb annoying bosses.

But over and over, “Envoys” made a point, and created a joke out of setting up an ominous moment of strife, only to have everyone find common ground and support. Commander Billups is happy to grant Rutherford’s request for a transfer. And even after welcoming him into the Security “Bear Pack,” Shaxs is willing to let Rutheford return to engineering, with the wholesome message, “You got to be true to yourself.”

Sure Boimler and Mariner bicker like brother and sister, which provides plenty of laughs, but they too find ways to support and help each other, and their bonding arc continues to grow. Lower Decks is able to find the moments of humor and moments of tension without pitting these characters against each other or making them into jokes themselves.

Pretty sure this will void the warranty

Still funny

“Envoys” continued the strong showing of the series premiere for Lower Decks, providing a proof of concept that this new format can work with Star Trek. Even with a relaxed pacing, there were still plenty of laughs to be found, with some of the Star Trek gags feeling more organic, and fewer of episode one’s Trek references without a joke attached.

Pointing out how Klingon names all seem to have apostrophes is the kind of thing where even casual fans can find the Star Trek humor without getting too meta, and superfans won’t feel like the show is mocking the franchise (even as they silently list off the Klingons who don’t follow the apostrophe trend). We are laughing with Star Trek, not at it.

While maintaining the episodic format which is natural for a TNG-inspired show, there are hints of character arcs and bonds forming that will hopefully pay off more as the season progress.

For now, Lower Decks continues to provide enough laughs and fun to make 2020 a little bit more bearable, and that’s an accomplishment.

Check out the size of those EPS manifolds

 All Access free month promo

CBS All Access also announced a one-month free promotion. For a limited time, try 1 month FREE!


And keep up with all the news and reviews from the new Star Trek Universe on TV at TrekMovie.com.

Subscribe
Notify me of
163 Comments
oldest
newest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Mariner is such a likeable character. She can get overbearing at times but Mariner is fun to watch.

I agree, Lower Decks makes 2020 a little bit more bearable. We are all stressed out with our own problems and it’s nice to have something that makes you feel good.

I’m REALLY liking it thus far. I like Disco and Love Picard. And though I didn’t want to be negative about Lower Decks, I had my worries. Two episodes in and I love it.

Last edited 1 month ago by Tek

Who’s your favorite Lower Decks character? Tendi is the best. Mariner is so much fun.

I’m not sure I have one yet. I like how they interact and I think they’re well written.

It’s funny how an animated Trek comedy has more life and realistic characters than the boring, dreary, robotic interactions we see in Picard and to a lesser extent Disco

When it turned out that Mariner had a previous relationship with K’orin, I really started to get a Jadzia Dax vibe from her.

In some ways, the relationship with Boimler feels a bit like Jadzia’s early interractions with Worf, almost as if Jadzia were meeting Worf from the first season of TNG.

Yeah… As funny as this episode was… Neither Mariner nor Boimler scored any marks with me. I found them both unlikable after the first episode and nothing has changed after the 2nd. In fact, Boimler is looking even worse.

Enjoyed the scores of parking tickets gag.

Yeah, the parking ticket gag actually felt like something Seth MacFarlane would do.

Not paying them though? Gotta be a space violation…

But… She’s the rebel who plays by her own rules!

I want to see Mariner on Star Trek Picard.

I’m sorry guys, but this isn’t Star Trek in my opinion. It’s brain dead drivvle for imbeciles.

There is no reason for you to insult everyone who likes it–that makes you a jerk, the very sort of arrogant, elitist, socially inept know-it-all The Simpsons parodied with the Comic Book Guy. People like you are the worst element of fandom.

Complaining about insults using an insult LOL

Ah. The “only stupid people like things I don’t like” post. Nice. Not unrelated to your post: at least this imbecile knows how to spell ‘drivel’.

Stop talking in absolutes.

Thank you, Comic Book Guy. Been watching Trek since theb 70’s, and I’m enjoying this show.

Warning to Scanlon. There’s no need to be insulting to other fans. Expressing your own opinion is fine, making it an absolute is gatekeeping. Please follow our community rules. Thanks.
https://trekmovie.com/about/comments-and-moderation/

The Office did cold opens as well, But the characters in Lower Decks are more similar to the B99 characters.

One thing I liked about this episode is it reminded me of a big reason why I enjoyed TNG era Trek so much: I wanted to be in Starfleet! Current Trek doesn’t really give me that vibe, but this show, especially with the Rutherford sub plot of trying out different divisions, rekindled that desire of joining Starfleet.

I would be blue-shirt science division for sure. I identify with Tendi.

Last edited 1 month ago by VZX

Wow you make an excellent point that i hadn’t even realized. Growing up watching the 90’s shows I wanted to be a member of the crew, I wanted to be on the Enterprise, live there and work there. But you’re absolutely right, I have never once had that feeling watching Discovery.

Amen, this series actually feels aspirational to me, like I wanna be in Starfleet! I wanna work in a Jeffries tube.

I haven’t watched it properly yet.
Doesn’t seem to be a show to take all that seriously, it’s just mainly comedy isn’t it, which is fine.
I do think Trek’ animation has so much potential. It’s almost incredible to think that Star Trek has not done animation since the 1970’s, that being a very short lived series.
I’d hope to see a more ambitious animated Trek’ show in the future, a.l.a The Clone Wars, Batman The Animated Series. Maybe if this series is successful they will do more animated shows!

Star Trek should do a The Clone Wars style animated show. Lower Decks is not that. Comedy is not bad either.

Animation does have potential if done in the right way. Star Wars did it, why not Star Trek.

The 1970’s is when Star Wars came to the scene, interesting.

I agree that they should also do a serious animation show. I’m loving LD, excited for Prodigy, but I would like an adult focused serious animated series.

It is comedy with some heft. The adventures so far are slightly skewed Trek scenarios, but the character development is real, not just aimless jokiness.

This.

Heck yes, I love the characters so far, they feel like people, they make me feel things. Can’t say that about Picard 🙄

The problem with this show so far is that it isn’t funny. And the “edgy” humor isn’t really edgy at all. And the characters are not interesting to keep tuning into each week. More power to the people who enjoy it, but I think I’m out after this second episode. Not for me.

While I found the 2nd episode had more gags that landed, the humor still isn’t all that “edgy”. I still think it comes across a little soft. We got improvement. I’m happy about that and hope the trend continues.

Not only that, but we were treated to another iteration of Hollywood’s favorite sitcom trope, the Stupid Guy: can’t do housework, can’t take care of a baby, or, in the case of a Star Trek sitcom, can’t think his way out of a box because he’s too “book smart.” And the young, hip, female “street smart” companion figures it all out. We’ve seen this over and over again in Hollywood sitcoms post-1990s, and it’s stereotypical and irksome.

Mariner is an obnoxious character and a paean to Donald Trump. She too cool for school. She can’t be bothered to read her mission brief, any more than Trump can be bothered to read his daily intelligence brief. She makes mincemeat of all those wonky experts, because she’s a street brawler. Seriously: this is Star Trek? That ain’t how things work in the real world.

Star Trek isn’t real.

That doesn’t make anti-intellectualism something to be celebrated. With the possible exception of ST09 and STID, this is the first time we’ve seen Star Trek *celebrating* a character who won’t do her homework.

Oh, and does anyone else find it a tad racist that it’s the Black characters these days who can’t be bothered with silly rules?

Hermione Granger she is not.

You’re kinda digging at this point. We get it. You don’t like the show.

Wow, “racism” because ONE of the Black character’s is a little of a rule breaker? What about the Captain? Is she secretly a rule breaker too? And I guess the White characters Ramsom must be a rule follower too. How about Shaxs? I guess he is White, so he must be a rule follower too right?

Unbelievable. The only one bringing anything racist to this show is you and your interpretation of what everyone else just considers is part of Mariner’s Kirk-ish character.

Wait… You see elements of Kirk in Mariner? I’m not seeing that at all….

McMahan in an interview said Mariner is inspired by Kirk, Picard and Janeway. I can definitely see a bit of Kirk in there easily, the fighting and disobeying orders part lol. I have a feeling she’s going to cheat death at least 5 times this season too.

Janeway, maybe her stubbornness (both of them can be very stubborn) and maybe how knowledgeable she is.

I am having a difficult time seeing what part of her makes up Picard…very difficult time lol. That said, it’s only been two episodes.

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

Yes, he did say that but honestly I’m having trouble seeing ANY of them in her. In fact the only thing I can see in common with Janeway is a 2nd X chromosome.

As said its only been 2 episodes. But yeah I see Kirk in her easily. The other two yeah I’m still having trouble with as well but its still early.

I’m guessing it’s the rebellious nature some are seeing in her that compares to Kirk? Kirk was really not a rebel. He had to make decisions on his own out in the frontier. But I wouldn’t call him a rebel. So my question still is what Kirk elements are being seen in Mariner at this early stage?

I already said it, the guy is a rule breaker as is Mariner. I didn’t say ‘rebel’ that implies he just does what he wants and that’s not true either. But yes he has defied the rules MANY times. That’s not always bad by the way. One of the very first rules he broke was in the Academy with changing the Kobayashi Maru test. He was also the guy who stole the Enterprise to get Spock back which he could’ve went to prison for. There are many of those examples on the show itself.

That’s who Mariner seems to be as well. She’ll follow most of them I’m guessing, but will have no problem to break them when she feel she is doing the right thing like giving the equipment to the farmers. It’s a small thing but a big thing for an ensign who is at the bottom rung of the ladder. LIke Kirk, she probably doesn’t disobey orders just to do it, its more than that.

And yes they are both willing to fight the moment calls for it lol. Mariner probably can Kirk fu like it’s no ones business.

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

Hmm… I guess but I don’t see it the same way. When she does it it is coming across as more reckless. When Kirk did it, and I would argue that it didn’t come up as often as one might think, it felt more calculated and reasoned. And he often did it after seeking counsel from his two closest comrades.

That’s about all I have to say on that.

OK but the point is they both break rules at times. Yes she is more reckless, why she got demoted. The only point is that neither are always by the book officers. But clearly Kirk was more focused since he made it to Captain despite it. Maybe not in the same cards for Mariner lol. But that’s what is interesting about her since she doesn’t want to advance, something Kirk, Janeway and Picard all strived for and all became Admirals.

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

On the contrary, more often Kirk *followed* orders. Your own example of the Kobiyashi Maru shows precisely this point. There was no rule against reprogramming the computer simulation; it was just a tacit assumption that Kirk questioned. Hence the commendation for original thinking.

Kirk was really not a rebel.

*Say that again.* There’s a trope out there that Kirk somehow never followed orders, which is ridiculous. Most often, he *followed* orders. The big exceptions I can think of, in “Amok Time” and TSFS, were for the highest moral reasons, and he knew he was putting his command in jeopardy. In the former case, he avoided consequences essentially due to a policy decision by T’Pau, a member of the Federation Council.

In the latter, he avoided consequences only because of happenstance — the Whale Probe appearing on the scene — and even then got demoted.

In “Lolani,” an episode of STAR TREK CONTINUES, he makes a similar decision, again for the highest moral reasons: to save an Orion woman from slavery. Keeping an eye on his kid this was not.

Further… From time to time he followed orders to a fault. Example… A Taste of Armageddon. He was going to leave because the inhabitants left the warning buoy but the Federation representative overruled him. He followed orders and begrudgingly headed to Vendikar. There are other examples where he obeyed the orders he got despite his better judgement.

McMahan in an interview said Mariner is inspired by Kirk, Picard and Janeway.

…which is also utterly incoherent. Kirk, Picard, and Janeway all had very different command styles. Mashing them up says that McMahan hasn’t actually actually thought about what those characters brought to the table.

I get it; the guy’s a Trekspert, and loves his Easter Eggs. It doesn’t make every idea he puts to paper production-worthy, any more than being a Trekspert made Larry Nemecek a good Dr. McCoy in the first episodes of STAR TREK CONTNUES.

Mariner is more Kirk than Kirk.

Well, it’s not about this particular show, it’s about popculture as a whole. Take for example Riri Williams, the preteen genius girl who stole Ironman’s suit. Or Ryan Wilder, new Batwoman in the upcoming second season of the eponymous show. Or Erica from Stranger Things.
For some reason, the “current-year” popculture is ridden with the stereotype of a plucky, feisty, non-conforming, authority-disrespecting minority young woman, who never gets to suffer any lasting consequences of her questionable behavior.

Of course, there’s nothing with this particular character trope. It’s just that it is getting a little bit overused lately. Everybody thinks it’s fresh and brave, therefore everybody is doing it.
Every once in a while, it would be nice to have a minority woman to be the rules-abiding bookish type, and not the obnoxious hyperactive sociopath. ;)

Um, unless I am missing something else, Mariner has been expressed punished for past actions. We know she has been demoted before. She has been in enough trouble that one more instance of regulation breaking will get her kicked off the ship (and maybe out of Starfleet). So I just don’t see the parallels to some subset of non-randomly selected popculture.

For some reason, the “current-year” popculture is ridden with the stereotype of a plucky, feisty, non-conforming, authority-disrespecting minority young woman, who never gets to suffer any lasting consequences of her questionable behavior.

Exactly — and this is an offensive racial stereotype. Neither Uhura nor Geordi nor Mayweather behaved this way. They were *good at their jobs*.

For some reason, the “current-year” popculture is ridden with the stereotype of a plucky, feisty, non-conforming, authority-disrespecting minority young woman, who never gets to suffer any lasting consequences of her questionable behavior.

Damn, I can’t think of a single factor in our world the past few years that would push an anti-authoritarian minority character trend in creative ventures… hmm… nope… nothing comes to mind at all.

“Wow, “racism” because ONE of the Black character’s is a little of a rule breaker? What about the Captain? Is she secretly a rule breaker too?”

Hiring for command positions on the basis of nepotism — plus setting up new hires to spy on their colleagues, rather than actually *manage* organizational behavior problems — doesn’t smack of brilliant leadership to me.

What it does smack of, as with Ensign Mariner, is more Trumpism.

Mariner doesn’t do homework. She is the homework.

Wow. I cannot agree with practically anything you said.

Boimler is a fresh out of the academy ensign, this is approximately his 6th planet (including Earth and Vulcan). He isn’t incapable, he is just inexperienced and, so far, has believed that all he needs is to study and he will be all set for whatever he encounters. He is learning that there are other things important too. He needs confidence and experience in real world situations.

Mariner doesn’t disdain studying – last episode she showed that she knows more regulations than Boimler – Boimler just hasn’t seen her study. That doesn’t mean that she doesn’t or won’t (see previous point about regulations), just that he hasn’t seen her do it. Why? Because she studied before, and has additional experience from her duty on multiple ships. Mariner is the result of study, inherent ability, and experience. Though I assume she still has some lessons to learn about humility.

Relax a little. This comedic take on Trek is not advocating to do like Trump.

Dude, no one counts Earth or Vulcan.

Mariner doesn’t disdain studying 

She expressly said that she doesn’t read mission briefs. Engage in whatever contortions you want to say that means she “doesn’t disdain studying.” At the end of the day, she doesn’t believe in preparing and is content to wing it.

The fact of the matter is that in real life, we have a commander-in-chief who doesn’t ready his daily intelligence brief, and the consequences have been disastrous.

Yup, I enjoyed this episode immensely more than the pilot and that was because of all the character moments and Mariner seemed a little more dialed down. If it continues this way we should have a good show on our hands.

100% agreed! Can not believe how much I’m liking this show so far. It’s just fun and light, but still very Star Trek. Its only two episodes but its the most Trek show since Enterprise IMO.

t’s just fun and light, but still very Star Trek.

Lemme guess: Roger Moore was your favorite Bond, too.

Star Trek always has the ‘escort the ambassador to peace talks’ episode. This was a great sendup of that. Boimler and Mariner are an absolute riot. The semi-twist at the end really shows a new side to the Boimler /Mariner relationship. Plus Ensign Rutherford is really growing on me,his basic gentleness is what attracts me to him. It’s easy to see why some of these characters may never go up in the ranks but it’s nice to know that they are basically good people. It goes to show Starfleet is not just command and science staff but the everyday people who make ships and missions work. Very nicely done

For what saving grace this show has, Rutherford and Tendi are actually more interesting characters than the leads.

Yes. Forced to agree there. The two leads are tired tropes.

2 episodes and I don’t get it.To me it’s lame, but to those who like it ,hey that’s great and enjoy

I appreciate that. Its not the people who dislike something, its the people who “dis“ others for their opinion who get to me

OK, verdict reached.

I F***ING LOVE THIS SHOW.

I finished the last one with cautious optimism. I didn’t hate it, but didn’t love it. This episode knocked it out of the park. Unfortunately, I don’t think it would be AS enjoyable for people without an encyclopaedic knowledge of Trek. But oh my Rod, this was absolutely wonderful.

I am an avowed “new-Trek disliker”. I have thought there was a lot that Discovery and Picard could have done differently and better. Lower Decks is DEFINITELY Trek for Trekkies. Every in-joke was a lyric to the Song of my People. And the fact that it doesn’t take itself seriously is… surprisingly refreshing to me. And appreciated. I don’t like it that other Nu-Treks wildly oscillate between taking themselves TOO seriously and not taking the franchise seriously. LDS has stricken that perfect balance of (relative) reverence to canon while forging its own path.

I guess I have to punchline that with “in my opinion” because everybody has an opinion and every opinion is valid blah blah blah. I just had the best lunch break in several months, so I’m pretty enthusiastic right now.

My prediction is all of the haters will comment on how the show endorses racism because of how Boimler treated the Ferengi. Their mock outrage will be less convincing than Quark’s in the premiere of Voyager. (making this mindset canon! The Academy literally teaches this stuff.)

But then they flipped it at the end! Subverted expectations in a FUN way, and not a disappointing one. That’s kinda where the other Nu-Treks fail. They subvert expectations, but the end result is bad news/catastrophic/doomy-gloomy. Like a lump of turd in your Christmas stocking. Who wants that?

My only regret is I can’t expect the people I love, non-Trekkies and casual Trek watchers, to enjoy this as much as I did.

I loved the Vendorian cameo. Rutherford’s record-breaking performance as a starship commander and then as a security officer fighting Borg were hilarious. The characters on this show are instantly lovable and relatable, while still leaving vast space for character arcs and development.

The bridge scenarios were pretty darn funny. “Let’s try it on a ship with even more children!” LOL

105% mortality!

This episode was much better. There were more genuine laughs in it. It’s still a little soft but if it can maintain this level then I will consider the show a success.

And this episode does the fan service better than just blurting out names. I enjoyed seeing the Andorian blade we saw in Enterprise. And the quick glimpse of the Vendorian from TAS was pretty cool. Things like that are welcome.

The thing that was lame and I really hope we see a lot less of is Boimler’s idiocy. In this episode he was truly a moron. Even the greenest of Ensigns could not be this oblivious. I was accepting it as just a 2-d animation character trope until the end. When the obvious Mariner ploy with the Ferengi came up. At first I thought he saw right through it but went along with it anyway only to let her know he knew at the end. As common and tired as that is it would have been better than what they did. He finished it out still not picking up on it. They have made this character oblivious beyond belief. This is Homer Simpson level stupidity they said they weren’t going to do. That goes beyond nativity.

And one last thing…. And this might be a bit controversial but isn’t classifying all of a race absolutely into one trait come across as…. Racial profiling? Does that seem a little beneath Trek?

PS: While I had ZERO glitches in the opening episode I had 5 of them in this one. The only reason I can think of for this is the time I watched. Last week I watched at about 7:30am. This one I watched at about noon. It seems as though the more people using the service the more likely it is I will get glitches. This has been a problem with CBSAA since the start. They really need to do something about this.

Last edited 1 month ago by ML31

Trek has always classified every alien race. The Ferengi are greedy, the Klingons are honorable warriors, the Romulans are schemers, the Bajorans are spiritual, etc.

At first. But it usually doesn’t take long to shed a little more light on it. And most, we don’t really know much about them anyway. There might be a an element of their society that values a certain custom or behavior. But that doesn’t mean they are all cut from the same cloth.

The Ferengi classify themselves as greedy! They’ve built an entire culture around greed. I think this show mentioning that which has already been firmly established gets a pass.

No, Boimler saw them as the most untrustworthy species in the galaxy. They are capitalists run amok, OK. But untrustworthy? No. Sounds like racial profiling to me.

According to Harry, they warn cadets about Ferengi at the Academy. This is nothing new.

And then the show Deep Space Nine went on for seven seasons, notably refuting this stereotype.

Yes but even on DS9 no one trusted Quark lol. Odo spent the entire series trying to lock him up. Kira wanted him kicked off the station. Worf hated him and even Sisko didn’t trust him although he was the one to convince him to stay. And that didn’t come from nowhere, Quark did do a lot of unethical things through the entire show. Stuff we never saw anyone else on that station do. So what am I missing? I mean yeah deeeeeeep down they all liked him and he was good hearted and cared about people, but they knew the guy was constantly up to no good. This scene says it all:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sAIwqjN-0uw

Yeah DS9 refuted that image alright. ;)

I mean sure, their image had improved but as far as most of Starfleet is concerned they STILL mostly don’t trust them. And yes believe it or not you can still have good people from a group and yet other people still not trust or like them no matter WHAT they do and partly because those stereotypes haven’t gone completely away. I’m black, trust me on this, I know there are still tons of people out there that will always see me only one kind of way. Even in the 24th century will still have biasness. We as humans have gotten over that with each other but there are still certain species they probably still don’t feel as comfortable being around.

This is just a part of reality, even in the 24th century. I’m sure there are plenty of Boimler’s view of Ferengis….they just hide it better as many do in the 21st century. ;)

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

But on a lighter note I’m just so happy we are discussing Ferengis again! 😃

God I have missed the 24th for so long easily being my favorite era and it’s just nice to finally have aliens back we haven’t seen since Voyager ended frankly. And now we’re starting to see them again on both PIC and now LDS.

I’ve missed these guys alot!

That’s pretty racist of Starfleet.

Of the three main Ferengi on Deep Space Nine, two of them renounce greed, and one joins Starfleet. The show takes place before Lower Decks. Deep Space Nine also showed Bajorans more interested in politics or power than spirituality. There were also plenty of not-so-honorable Klingons in Trek programming.

I don’t get your comment about racial profiling? Who is being profiled? I guess you are saying Boimler profiled the Ferengi? But the whole point was that the Ferengi was purposefully playing up the stereotypical “greedy” Ferengi traits of early TNG to get Boimler a win and some confidence. They specifically reverse it with the reveal at the end that the Ferengi isn’t stereotypical at all, but more the fully developed race that DS9 showed us. Up till that point, i would have agreed that the portrayal of the Ferengi was troubling for a modern show, but after that? No way. Am I missing something?

There was no reverse reveal at the end. It was just another deal for the Ferengi. How is that reversing the stereotype? She played on Boimler’s racial profiling of all Ferengi being untrustworthy. And sadly, Boimler was Homer Simpson level stupid to fall for it.

I saw it as a personal favor for Mariner (unless I missed some important piece of dialog about a transaction). Yeah, Mariner played to the “by the books” description of Ferengi – because that is all the knowledge that Boimler probably has, reading a text prepared for Starfleet cadets. He doesn’t have the real-world experience to know that Ferengi have a wide variety of motivations and demeanors. There are 1,000s of species out there, and Starfleet doesn’t have time for an in-depth cultural training on every single one of them for cadets. Boimler showed surface knowledge of many of the species they ran into, but lacked the details for smooth contact with them.

(Just spitballing here, but) The Starfleet text was probably written by some academic around the time of the historic first, face-to-face, knowing contact between the Ferengi and the Enterprise-D. Starfleet interactions with Ferengi were probably fairly limited to military Ferengi and entrepreneurs along the border regions (like DS9) – and with the Federation’s lack of freeflowing currency, there have probably been more limited opportunities for contact with Starfleet outside of their law and order role than with other neighboring species.

I don’t see the problem here. The events play out logically within the character’s experience, and the “twist” (which was obvious and not really a twist but just further development) rightfully showed the incorrectness of the stereotype.

If what you say is true then one might argue that Star Fleet Academy is teaching their officers to treat other species in an absolute fashion. This doesn’t sound very enlightening to me at all. Which is why I have such a difficult time with Boimler assuming that Ferengi was untrustworthy. It’s quite obviously a bad assumption to make. Even on TNG they never came across as untrustworthy as a species.

From what I could tell it was just part of a transaction between Mariner and the Ferengi. It could have been something that was owed from some time ago but Ferengi do honer their deals. It was Boimler who racially profiled they guy. And in such a monumentally idiotic way. I know they were presenting him as green but there is a big difference between green and being outright dumb. And I know this is a comedy and its animated. But good grief… The Boimler character is tough to swallow especially considering that the producers themselves claimed the charaters were all smart in their own way. But Biomler goes way beyond naive.

Even on TNG they never came across as untrustworthy as a species.”

Picard and the Stargazer….

Ship was sent as a gift and yet was a trap.

Picard also had lots of dealings with them that showed a lot scheming.

We also have a Rule of Aquisition that says “ Trust is the biggest liability of all.”

Most are out there for profits and to gain political and social Standing on Ferenginar. We don’t know how fast or far any reforms have come. They still have a reputation that may take a long time to cleanse.

This show is also heavily based around TNG so some of the elements in DS9 may not show up.

Sure. And that Captain was stirpped of his command for that trap.

And most it seems honored their deals.

I LOVE this show. Was super skeptical of Trek rendered as animation but the writing is so good. Love all the deep references and Trek trops turned on their head. I’d love to see this cast in a live action version of this show.

LOL Luke, good to hear. I remember seeing your posts and how much you HATED even the idea of having animated Star Trek shows on. You seem almost adamant you were going to hate it. It’s good to see such a turnaround and that you had an open mind.

Yes. I was super surprised I liked it… or that I love it. Glad I was wrong. :)

So happy to hear that! Even if you still didn’t like it that would’ve been fine of course; but it’s nice you were able to put your bias aside and accept it for what it is. It really is a great show…for some of us anyway.

Appreciate your open-mindedness Luke Montgomery.

Glad you like it and good to hear from you again. As Tiger2 has been saying, the community has been feeling small here.

I wouldn’t say small but definitely more divided. But yeah I guess that’s nothing new around here lol.

Another strong episode, for me. I love all the characters, the humor works for me, and the animation is nice.

I haven’t seen the episode but children being ejected into space, even if just in a simulations, comes off awfully wrong to me thematically. This is the kind of humor that’s bewildering to say the least… Reminds me of that Klingon baby head on DSC. Again, it was just a fake, but nonetheless a tasteless provocation…

But yeah, glad most of you like the show…

I have to admit I laughed hard (but I felt really really bad about it ;)).

It’s just a joke. I found it laugh out loud funny and am unapologetic for it.

Jokes about dying children? Maybe that’s why I never got into animated comedy…

Literally anything can be funny in the right context. Sometimes taking a risk with a joke can have consequences. You cross a line too far that joke better work or it comes across as cruel or insensitive. Personally I’d rather comedy writers and comedians take risks rather than not. For me, everything is on the table.

The joke was about the common complaint that the Enterprise regularly flies into dangerous situations with children on board. Realistically, they should lose children some times. Although, perhaps the entire Kindergarten and Pre-K classes shouldn’t be taken out by an asteroid.

I see the point in discussing the dangers of having children aboard a starship. Look, some sister ships of the Ent-D have been sacrificed in TNG’s first seasons, the USS Yamato for instance. And those kids were lost “for real” (within the fictional world). Losing kids is a sad reality, one that is very true in developing countries or in wars, terrorist attacks, diseases, everyday traffic etc.

But this is not about discussing the topic, it’s about making fun of it. That doesn’t feel right. But maybe that’s exactly the problem I have with such comedy endeavours. The writers are supposed to find funny situations and the viewers are craving for intense, creative, provocative humor.

Making jokes about dead kids, sexuality, war crimes or any other serious issue feels wrong to me.
Maybe it’s due to my alledged autism that I don’t get this sort of humor. Sorry for that. The only humor I truly get is puns. I’ve spent my whole life playing on words which some people growing weary of those flat and tired puns.
Those are the guys that extensively watch stuff like Rick & Morty, craving for a more adult, provocative humor which I simply do not understand as I stand apart like a Vulcan or android on those issues.

Last edited 1 month ago by Garth Lorca

There’s nothing wrong with a good pun, but the best humor is the kind that makes you think about something. Humor can be a good way to say serious things about dead kids, sexuality, and war crimes.

It’s making fun of the dubiousness of TNG Enterprise keeping many schoolchildren aboard longterm despite the ship being in constant danger. That’s the humor, it’s not about laughing at the death of children per se.

To me, the debate of having civilians on board is secondary to the joke. It’s almost like icing on the cake. The ship has kids on board. They made a joke from that fact. I found it funny.

As the above review says, it was done as a comment on the rather questionable practice of having children and families on dangerous starships in the TNG era. Also, since you haven’t even seen the episode yet, you wouldn’t have any clue that the moment comes off as very funny, and not exploitative (as the scene you mentioned in Discovery does) in that 1) its a simulation, and 2) they don’t show anything – it is all done through dialogue and characters expressly lamenting the deaths. Pretty much the opposite of how you, uninformedly, laid out.

I thought it was funny but children don’t deserve to die in space or anywhere else.

Last edited 1 month ago by Faze Ninja

Excellent point.

Actually the line about getting a ship with even more children aboard is the only time I have chuckled aloud watching CBSAA Star Trek. I get your point, but it helps that the show is very cartoony and not very beholden to realism.

Its really really all about context, guys. Its making fun of the fact that there are families on board a frontier ship in the first place. That is the core of the joke. Its satirical in nature. But if anyone finds it distasteful, i can respect that.

It’s warp time!!

OMG, another fun and great episode. I loved everything about it. Mariner and Boimler are such an odd couple but you know they are going to love each other by the end of the season. Boimler is clearly still very green dealing with aliens while Mariner is super street smart. Maybe a little TOO street smarts but it works. Her and General K’orin (wow it’s so true so many Klingon names do have apostrophes for some reason! Worf got off easy but not B’Elanna) getting into the fight at the beginning and then singing as they drink blood wine to the planet was gold!

And just being on that planet felt like STAR TREK again. The scenes of them interacting with the locals {very very badly :)) was so fun to watch. And I love we saw so many various aliens, even a few new ones. It’s just nice to see them exploring for the sake of exploring. Something I missed in PIC and DIS…a lot!

But yeah I think the scenes on the ship with Rutherford was a lot of fun too. I originally thought based on the first episode anyway the senior officers were going to just be jerks to the ensigns but so happy that won’t be case. I loved how supportive they were with Ruherford as he explored various jobs. It was fun to watch and yes it has finally made me rethink having children aboard a starship is just not a good idea lol. And I’m still trying to figure out what the Janeway Protocol is but Ransom seems to really like it. I don’t know if that’s good or bad?

In another thread I mentioned I wanted to see Mariner and Boimler as a couple by the end of the season, but nope, this episode made it clear it’s Tendi and Rutherford who should be together. So my first idea has been tossed in the air lock, it’s gone! Tendi and Rutherford is who I now ship and ship hard! They are both just so sweet and endearing.

I am really loving this show so far. It just has all the great elements of the 24th century, so many great references, really good characters and just so much fun to watch. I don’t even care if it’s funny or not (and it is) I just love being in this universe. It’s also nice to just have a show end again where there is a beginning, middle and END. The last shot of Tendi admiring the pulsar is what Star Trek is to me.

But same time I understand why others hate it too. I think it’s going to be a divisive show for awhile but hopefully more people will like it in time. For me this may be the most Trek show since Enterprise!

I absolutely agree about the senior officers. From the first episode I also thought they were gonna be portrayed as jerks but this episode changed that impression in a good way, while also developing them a little more. I also realized was this the first time in Trek where they explored different parts of a planet? Usually they only explored a single location.

Something else I was hoping would get brought up but didn’t yet…

I was wondering what happened with that non-corporal malevolent life form that made the tricorder. We saw it pop into the Captain. I thought that was going to be a B story but nothing ever came from it. Are they going to revisit this in future episodes? Weird that they showed it and never returned to it.

It didn’t “pop into” the Captain. It attacked her, but since it was weakened by Mariner, it didn’t have any strength left to kill the Captain, and instead perished itself. It likely will never be mentioned again.

How can you tell that? It looked very much like it popped inside her body. Ready to take it over or something. Or it went in there to regain strength or form some sort of malevolent symbiotic relationship. There was nothing to suggest it perished. Nothing at all.

I thought it went inside of her the first time I watched it, but on rewatching it looks more like it faded away when she walked into it. That would be much funnier, too.

I haven’t re-watched a single SH Trek. None have been worth the effort. I see no reason to re-watch this episode even though I enjoyed it. So I’m going with what I saw on the first viewing. If something comes across a certain way on the first viewing that was not the intent, that is a director’s problem.

I recognized that it died as soon as it hit the captain, they telegraphed that It was losing power to do anything once he created the tricorder and power cell.
It was to small and swatted like a bug when walked into.

Btw the first 3 or 5 minutes before the introduction of each ep is supposed to be like minisodes vaguely related or not at all to the ep at hand according to Mike McMahan.

That’s a lot of assumptions. It was swatted like a bug? It looked very much like it popped right inside her. My thought was it went there to be safe from Mariner. It sure didn’t look like it got swatted.

Could you please point out the McMahon interview where he said such a thing? Because so far in these two episodes I haven’t seen that. The first episode absolutely was relevant to the episode. This one looks like it might be unconnected but for all we know they may return to that entity later in the season.

Last edited 1 month ago by ML31

I agree ML31, I registered it as a seed of a story that never germinated. It sure looked to me like the captain got invaded. But maybe we’ll be surprised and it’s a thread that gets picked up next episode? I would appreciate a semi-serialized plot line, would help elevate the material a bit.

Its interesting I see people asking about that scene with the entity. It wasn’t suppose to be anymore than that but since this is Star Trek people think it was suppose to continue. But it was more of a cold opening you see in comedies where the opening scene doesn’t have much to do with the rest of the episode, like last weeks didn’t.

Think of something like the opening of Friends, they usually just had a funny scene and then it was never mentioned again in the rest of the episode.

I can happily say I have never once seen more than 3 seconds of that show, Friends. So I do not know of what you speak on that subject.

Since they never returned to it I gathered it was just an opening bit or it was something that will get revisited in later episodes. I’ve found it very rare in comedies to have an opening bit if it was not a sketch show. I honestly cannot think of one that did it regularly off the top of my head.

Last week’s show opened with a scene that set the tone of the two characters. It very much had to do with what was going on. Boimler getting his leg sliced doesn’t have the same consequences as an alien entity entering the body of the Captain so I would say that it probably should have been mentioned. Perhaps when our characters came back we could see the after affect of having to remove it or something. Like a lot of crap went down that would have been the A story on TNG or something. Wait, they had all the Rutherford stuff. So I’m still wondering what happened to it. As far as we know it still resides within the Captain….

I get you but that’s what it is, an opening bit. I wouldn’t think about it beyond that. And yeah plenty of comedies I seen do this: Cheers, Martin, Fresh Prince of Bel Air (I heard that’s being rebooted again), Fraiser, Parks and Rec and as said Friends. Those are just off the top of my head (and I don’t watch a lot of sitcoms today).

MAYBE there will be something more to that scene but I really doubt it. This show also feels very episodic as well (which feels SO refreshing) and probably whatever storylines we see here won’t be brought up next week. Nothing from first episode was mentioned in the second anyway.

And the cold opening may not be EVERY week since some of those shows did have openers that was part of the episode. But my guess if they do something like this again next week it will be the standard.

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

Well… I’ve been rewatching Frasier lately and haven’t seen it. If that they want to do OK… But it would probably be wise to do it in such a way that doesn’t outright feel like it is going to lead into something that is going to happen on the show. Unless they consider misdirecting the audience a funny gag.

There was absolutely nothing in the scene to suggest that it could pop inside peoples bodies and take them over either. That was just you making an assumption. Did you not see the part where Mariner could simply squeeze the thing and hurt it? If it could pop into peoples bodies wouldn’t it do it then? The very simple and obvious joke was that Mariner weakened it so much that the captain killed it without even noticing it was there. Admittedly that could have been made more clear by adding a tiny scream or something when it hit the captain.

There was absolutely nothing in the scene to suggest the thing died or winked out. Yes, it was tired from being treated like it was but the it just entered the Captain. Who knows why? The thing entering the Captain like that is not an assumption. It is what was presented on screen. It was quite obvious. Plus, we’ve seen this sort of thing on TNG more than once. The reach was assuming it died or faced out or whatever it is that ends it.

Again, if their intent was that it died or vanished, then that was a directing failure. If that was their goal there were plenty of ways to show it in a for sure kind of way.

But I didn’t find it ‘misdirecting’ at all. I think majority of people knows its just a cold opening, especially since it was never brought up again and that this show is more episodic.

I don’t see how you can assume a “majority” think that. The first episode didn’t have a “cold open”. This one may or may not have. As I said above, that thing may reappear later in the season for all we know. And even if not, that’s just one of two that had a disconnected opening bit. Hardly enough to conclude that is the show’s format. Episodic or not.

But you understand comedic sitcoms traditionally start with a cold open – usually (although not always) unconnected to the rest of the episode. The pilot didn’t have one because pilots don’t have them. I assumed Mariner had weakened it so much it tried to attack the captain and just died. That’s the joke. That’s why the captain just carried on speaking as normal. I very much doubt we’ll be referring back to it.

Sorry but most traditionally do not start that way. They often started with a set up for that weeks shenanigans. I recall Cheers from time to time would have an unrelated but up front. But not all the time and most did not.

I assumed it was weakened and entered the Captain to take life energy or something from her. There was no evidence it died. Again, if that was the intent then chalk it up to a director fail. It popped right in there. Leaving the viewer to think that was going to be a part of the upcoming show. So again, unless intentional misdirects are part of the jokes on the show it left the viewer thinking we will see it again.

Last edited 1 month ago by ML31

Well, you know what happens when you assume. Watch it again if you need to. The blue energy breaks apart and dissipates after hitting the captain. It does not phase into her body. Mariner being able to put it in a choke hold is more evidence that physicality harms it and it can’t phase into people. Perhaps the director could have made it more clear by adding a tiny scream or cutting the entity off mid sentenced or something when it hit, but you’re really just being stubborn about it now.

Well, it is also an assumption that the thing dissipated upon striking the Captain. As there was really no evidence to suggest that is what happened. And it did indeed appear to phase into her body, as you say. Why am I stubborn but you are not? Sorry, that argument doesn’t work and when someone goes there I feel like it only undermines their comments.

If the director had the Captain swat at it like a bug and it smacked against the wall and slowly slid down… Sure. That would have not only communicated its demise but would have been another funny gag as well. But that didn’t happen. The creature could have made a “oof” sound or something upon contact with the Captain. But that didn’t happen either. What happened was an absorbing kind of sound and a little effect conducive to the entity entering a body. Nothing that suggested the thing perished in any way.

And you are right about assuming. I shouldn’t have used that word. It was not an assumption. It was what happened on screen.

Happy dance time here.

Watched it with the whole family. My spouse had some laugh-out-loud moments again. Kids not riveted, but watching along.

I’m not watching it with my parents yet but might watch it with my family over the weekend. My brother likes Star Trek somewhat.

Good to know.

I agree with Scanlon. I don’t think he meant to insult everyone who likes the show, he did apologise in advance, but in my opinion, the show is rubbish. Btw, His Name is Rios, that has to be one of the most hypocritical posts I’ve read for a long time. You have a dig at the guy for being insulting, then insult him. Touch a nerve did he?

This show is not rubbish. Don’t watch it! Stop complaining and watch DS9 or something.

Scanlon was gatekeeping and being a rude jerk.

Last edited 1 month ago by Faze Ninja

So, I am not allowed an opinion, but you are? I thought this was a public comments section. Yeah he was being one I guess, but so are you. I’m actually glad people enjoy the show, I’d rather people happy than not, but in my opinion, the show is garbage. Before you call me comic guy’ it has nothing to do with me wanting shows that stick strictly to the original format. I love STD and even the JJ movies, I just don’t like this new cartoon. If I want to express that opinion, I will, so why don’t you go and watch The Orville or something.

Let me make sure I’m tracking this. Jason was insulted because a guy who was insulted by somebody else then insulted the person who had insulted him, so he decided to spout off about it even though he was not in any way involved. Now, somebody has called him out for it, and he’s insulted because that person was insulted by him being insulted by somebody else being insulted by somebody who was being insulting. And now I’m, etc. Actually, I’m not insulted by any of this, I just hate to see trolling this inadequate; it’s not trolling at all, it’s just flailing.

Lower Decks is awesome, by the way. Best first two episode of a new Trek series since at least “Enterprise.”

Haha excellent,

So you actually think Lower Decks is better than the JJverse movies, STD and Picard?

Not better than Star Trek ’09, which I love, but otherwise, yes; better than all of the rest put together, for my money. The two Kelvinverse sequels are mediocre, Discovery is bad, and Picard is terrible. As I see it, at least.

Granted, the bar hasn’t been set very high thus far (I’ll cut Beyond some slack even if it’s dangerously flawed with a dreadful waste of a villain) but what BB says. x10000.

Last edited 1 month ago by blackmocco

I like parts of Beyond. Jayla is cool and the Yorktown is awesome (if implausible). It’s got a good score, and decent character moments here and there. But I agree, the villain is a dreadful waste indeed; how you cast Idris Elba and misuse him that badly is something I will never understand.

Saying Lower Decks is better than all of that put together is hyperbolic and I don’t even really believe it myself. But it makes me feel good about the potential remaining in the franchise, which I haven’t felt in several years, since before Discovery launched.

Fair enough mate. I like STD and the JJ movies myself. Picard…hmmm. It started off good, then went silly. The first season of most things are never the best, so let’s hope Picard picks up. I doubt it somehow, but maybe even Lower Decks will improve. To each his own. No one is right or wrong when it comes to preference. PS, the arrack on the Enterprise In Beyond was great, but it all went downhill after then.

I guess I am one of the few, but so far, not liking this very much. The characters are tired stereotypes and worse – it’s not funny.

Did anyone else catch Mariner, waking from her nap, referring to the ’awesome dream’ that quotes TWOK? (Khan’s speech via the comm to Kirk — ’buried alive’ and all that…)

Most of the humor of ’Lower Decks’ is not for me — plenty of details about the jokes either grate with me or are just a bit too ’edgy’ for my delicate sensibility.

But all that is secondary. Humor is such a personal thing, like music or any other creative endeavor: you come up with something that ’speaks’ to your own sensibility, and hope that other people respond to it. So, i don’t think it’s fair to hold it against the show if it’s not ’my’ kind of funny.

At least thus far, the show is a romp in that very familiar playground of 2360s-70s-80s Trek — sort of deconstructing it along the way. It’s thoughtfully constructed, and clearly literate, and positively bursting with ideas and details. As a fan, it’s possible to kick back and watch — and rewatch — and revel in that.

*

My worry is that the basic concept will be limiting. The method of propulsion is jokes; will they manage to dive into deeper ’big ideas’?

For me, anyhway, Trek does its best when offering us futuristic fables. Remember, ’the human adventure is just beginning’; that slogan was for us, in the present day. What lessons can we take, from these fables, to build toward that future?

Both serialized and cinematic Trek struggle with this; they get caught up in epic scale and spectacle, at the expense of being ’empty’ — or, at least, quite thin on ideas. At least to my thinking, ’the Undiscovered Country’ and ’Insurrection’ succeed the most of the lot. ’Nemesis’ tried valiantly, but ultimately failed at the creative level. ’Picard’ almost succeeds, but is written so densily and choppily that its big ideas get a bit lost.

*

For me, the big test of ’Lower Decks’ is going to be that of ’big ideas’. That would make the difference between it being just a romp (just ’pure fun’) and something really special. That’ll be hard to do…

We’ll see. We’re two episodes in and there are two whole seasons in the offing. That gives the clearly thoughtful creative team plenty of time to make this romp something a bit ’more’.

But, you know… if a romp is all this show ends up being, it’s a heck of a lot of fun.

Wow. Just wow. :(

I respectfully disagree with Anthony’s review. I’m truly not enjoying this show and I do not find it funny at all.

I loath Boimler’s constant whining. Mariner might as well just be a Q crossed with Bugs Bunny. They are both so hyperbolic, stereotyped and overbearing to me. Rutherford and Tendi, however, are much more watchable.

To be honest, they only thing I really enjoy from this show are the Easter Eggs. I particularly enjoyed the Vendorian. Sadly, that is not enough of a reason for me to continue to watch this show.

To those who do feel that this is your cup of Earl Grey, I’m happy for you. However, I’m very disappointed as I was looking forward to this show. It’s just not for me. I’ll probably give episode 3 a watch next week, maybe.

“I’m truly not enjoying this show and I do not find it funny at all.”

“Sadly, that is not enough of a reason for me to continue to watch this show.”

“However, I’m very disappointed as I was looking forward to this show. It’s just not for me.”

“I’ll probably give episode 3 a watch next week, maybe.”

Well, that worked out.

Giving something three chances isn’t unreasonable, is it?

Ha, no. Not at all. Was just making a joke. At least you’re giving it a chance.

Last edited 1 month ago by blackmocco

Really enjoyed the Tendi/Rutherford story which actually had really good comedy. The Boimler/Mariner story however has serious problems. We are presented with two extremes, Boimler’s by the book knowledge and behaviour and Mariner’s complete disregard of regulations and more practical approach. Usually in a story with two extremes there is a point where one method is successful while the other fails and then a later point where this is reversed. Showing that both methods have their merits. The moral being that intuition is good but regulations exist for a reason. There is a comeuppance for one character. But here, one method consistendly fails while the other continuously succeeds. The moment of comeuppance for Mariner comes, but is just a fake. She throws Boimler a bone to ease his frustration. She was always right, he was always wrong. And he actually had this revelation himself. His approach is demonstrably false it seems. So, shouldn’t Mariner take this opportunity to start teaching him her ways? Instead she reinforces his false approach by throwing him a bone. And goes through with it to the end. It’s not even a funny revelation for the viewer as the encounter with the Ferengi and Mariner’s sudden naivity seemed fishy from the beginning. In the end we can only feel sorry for Boimler whose only triumphs are mere fabrications. Even worse, his fake moment of being eventually right is when his racism towards Ferengi is catered to. So not only is his consistendly false method reinforced but also his (false?) stereotypes towards Ferengi.

I think this a trope that is increasingly being used as a way to show “powerful” characters. We saw a similar approach to Michael Burnham is Discovery as well, that all everything she does is almost always ends up being good or positive while other characters continue to fail miserably. The balance is increasingly missing and my theory for why they are doing this is that they don’t want to get the ire of social media by showing (especially) the minority characters as somehow more bookish or less than the other characters.

There are some valid points here. I absolutely was expecting Boimler to save Mariner from herself in the end. It’s cliche but it’s valid and satisfying. Instead they made Boimler even dumber than dumb. When he went along with I was then expecting him in the end to give Mariner a “wink”. That he saw what she was doing and appreciated her making the effort to make him feel better. But we didn’t even get THAT. Nope. Boimler is just a by the book moron even in the end. No lesson learned. There were a number of funny gags and that’s really the bottom line but the stupidity of Boimler after just two episodes is leaving a bad taste in my mouth.

Mariner’s rule breaking is what got them into trouble in the first place. And Boimler was the only one of them who knew that their com-badges wouldn’t work, because he read the mission briefing. Mariner even admitted that Starfleet needs people like Boimler as well as people like herself.

Very well said. That ending sat wrong with me for the same reasons.

Better than the first ep, and Mariner has mellowed a bit- but Boimler and his meltdowns are getting unbearable. He would work better as a more minor character.

Being a fan of Rick and Morty, and Star Trek (of course) I want to like this more. I guess I would say it’s “fine.” It’s not laugh out loud funny, it’s not in-your-face challenging comedy like Rick and Morty. I chuckled a few times and appreciated the spin on the Trek tropes and good natured pokes at the Trek cliches. But right now my feeling is like “I’ll watch it when I have a few spare minutes and I don’t expect anything great.” Honestly, it feels like they are too worried about being too over the top, and I kind of wish it were more over the top. Just my two cents.

Last edited 1 month ago by bmar

You are not alone. I, myself, would really like to see them poke fun at more Star Trek tropes. Not MAKE fun mind you. Just have some fun with them. The jokes in the 2nd episode were better but it still feels like they are holding back. Would like for the writers to just go nuts a little more. It feels like they are worried about offending people. Which is bad for comedy.

I think the thing I like about Rick and Morty is that while it’s full with sex jokes and fart jokes and drunk jokes, it’s also filled with really, really smart jokes, literary jokes, stuff that really challenges you to “get it.” And if you don’t get it, or can’t keep up, it’s not going to stop and explain it to you. That’s what I wish this was. Again, I think it’s fine. It’s kinda funny and kinda fun, but I think it could be a lot more if they weren’t so worried about pissing off Trek fans.

We seem to be in similar pages here.

I totally get how Mariner is intimidating to Boimler’s self-esteem. I did not think Boimler was dumb to buy into the Ferengi stunt, how should he have expected Mariner to pull a trick like that? I think it was quite strong of Mariner that she did not feel the need to correct the facts when everyone was laughing at her expense, all for the sake of giving Boimler’s self-confidence a boost. It says a lot about her self-confidence not being dependent on the views of others. Although she maybe saves the reveal for some future opportunity :-)

There is a goal in mind that will bring us a much bigger Star Trek universe, the trolls don’t get it.

The haters and all the tired “This isn’t Star Trek comments” are going to seem totally idiotic in 10 years when a new 10th Trek show comes out. folks will complain that it’s not like good old Lower decks.

Same idiots hated and killed Enterprise. Funny how they all talk now about how great it was.
Lower Decks is truly the right direction to stretch out the vast opportunities of the Star Trek universe.

Time will reveal

It always does. Hopefully, it’s going to reveal that the missteps of Discovery and Picard were corrected by Lower Decks and Strange New Worlds. And heck, maybe even by the third season of Discovery; I don’t hold out much hope of that one, but it’s not impossible.

Spot on my friend, but this idiot hate happens everywhere, not only in Trek… Only interactive TV shows will be our salvation from all those idiots wanbabe producers & directors when viewers will be able to interact directly with the story and adapt it to their own prefereces..But even then, I’m sure they will find something to complain about.. Personally, I will watch EVERY new Trek show, some I will like more, others less, but I’ll for sure enjoy and be greatful for having all of them. I prefer that, rather only watching re-runs, as the situation was a few years ago.

Last edited 1 month ago by Alex

This was an awesome episode. I wish this was live action.

This episode had heart, and that’s all I really need in my Trek to enjoy it. It’s serviceable fun, nothing mind-blowing, no belly laughs, but it makes me smile like Star Trek hasn’t in quite some time. Color me impressed.