Saturday, July 8, 2017

I Fix Healthcare and also GTBT #27 Errand of Mercy

Intro: I’ve loved Star Trek since I was a kid. I started by watching TNG in 6th grade. I’ve been a fan since then and though I’ve spent a lot of time watching Stat Trek, I’ve never watched The Original Series. So, I’m watching and reviewing them as a fan of Star Trek, but one whose never seen any of them. So I’m watching all the TOS episodes for the first time and saying whether or not they suck. At the end, I give examples of better Star Trek to watch that remind me of this episode. That’s it. 

Been trying to start every one of these with some other bullshit having nothing to do with Trek. Having trouble thinking of anything this week. I guess healthcare is a pretty big deal last couple weeks. Folks are trying to save Obamacare. Other folks are trying to get rid of it. I’m no healthcare expert and don’t claim to be, but the one thing that always gets to me during these healthcare debates are the folks who are just so adamant that absolutely nothing ever changes because then they won’t be able to see their doctor again. I refuse to believe that anyone on earth actually likes their doctor that much. The overwhelming majority of doctors suck. They’re the worst. You wait six weeks to see the jerks and then they push you out there in five minutes. I broke my ankle a couple years. I asked my doctor when I’d get my cast off and he shrugged and said: “don’t you work from home anyhow?” Come on, Doc. I work from home, I’m not Howard Hughes. I like to go to the occasional place from time to time, and when I do I like to do it without a dumb old pair of crutches digging into my armpits. I only ever paid my copay, which was still way too much. I don't even know what my that doctor was bilking from the insurance company. All to look at an X-ray a much friendlier person took the day before and confirm what any fucking idiot with eyes could tell you: There was a significant crack in the bone and it hurt very much to walk on. 

I think if you want to fix healthcare then what you need to do is only go to doctors with what you have. You have a broken ankle, then you go to a doctor with one. He’ll know how much crutches suck and how important it is to get you back on your feet as soon as possible. So there you are. That's the solution. From here on out that's how you get a doctor. You need treatment for HIV? You go to a doctor with HIV. You have cancer? So does your doctor. You have a bad cold? Come on, what kind of asshole goes to the doctor for a cold? Just drink some tea and get some sleep and quit being a drain on the system you asshole. 

I think the field of childhood leukemia is really going to take a nosedive, but you know what they say about making omelets. 

Know what didn’t take a nosedive? This week’s Trek. Here we are, folks. We have engaged Klingons. I just assumed that we’d have arrived here earlier than 26 episodes in. For all the talk Klingons get in Trek lore and how famous they are as villains I really assumed we’d have done this a long time ago. Almost at the end of season one. The introduction of the Romulans has been one of my favorites. This one isn’t quite that good, but still. Solid. Real goddamn solid. Here we are.


The relationship between the Federation and the Klingon Empire have fallen apart. Looks like war. Which is no good. Kirk and the gang head to Organia, because they think the Klingons are going to try to annex it and they’d like to avoid that. The Organians don’t seem too interested in being annexed by the Klingons or taking Federation help. They really just seem pretty squirrelly and aloof. 
Here are the Organians not giving nearly enough fucks about their impending doom for Kirk's 

The Klingons show up and the Organians hid Kirk and Spock among their own to prevent the Klingons from murdering them. Kirk takes the opportunity to sneak behind enemy lines and blow shit up which pisses off the Organians to no end. These folks do not care for violence. 

Gene Roddenberry's idea of war is two giant things sitting directly in front of each other just blasting away. Also, here’s your first look at a Klingon Bird of Prey

Kirk and Spock try to get a resistance going, but it doesn’t take. It just results in them getting captured. The Organians refuse to have any violence whatsoever. They get really pissed off and there’s the big reveal. Turns out the Organia are actually energy beings. Not only that, they’re energy beings who get really pissed off when folks are violent. So they force the Klingons and Federation into a truce using their mind powers. I’m sure the truce won’t last, but still. 

Good Trek?

Yes. This Trek is good. I didn’t know anything about this episode and even though I knew there was gonna be something up with the Organians the ending was unique and fun. They’re relying on godlike folks again, which is annoying. But all in all, I thought it was a really solid reveal at the end. You kind of know something is afoot when nobody is taking this seriously. However, it’s a little weird that nobody knew anything about these people before this. The Federation or anyone else has accidentally stepped on the toes of yet another godlike race of people that live right smack-dab between them and the Klingons? Nobody has spent any time with these folks before the Klingons were supposed to be coming through? Seems like someone should have known that these people were more than they seemed. But still, it leads to the fun moral relevancy message at the end. This seems like another one that was aimed squarely at the Vietnam crowd. This is a great thing about sci-fi where you can so easily say fuck you to a government without actually ever saying it. It’s another just great episode that I wish I would’ve been able to see at the time. Or at least read a review from when it first aired. Makes me even more excited about Star Trek: Discovery. I know they plan on taking a more serialized approach like DS9, which is great, but I hope they’re also able to balance great stuff like this.
"Today is a good day to have a think piece written about you"

This is what the Klingons look like. It’s weird, but I knew that this was coming. But still. It's weird. It's not even that it's black face. It's dark faced though and it’s fucked up to look at it nonetheless. It’s dark enough face makeup to where it’s a really good thing that they’re not still doing it this way. A lot of what went on to become latter-day Klingons is found here. But it's so different. I like that about Trek. As someone who's been watching Trek forever it can be frustrating to watch them fuck with continuity, but at the same time, I like how Trek doesn’t mind tossing it out the window to make something better. Like the Klingon makeup or everything about the Borg every time they're ever in an episode. Looking forward to more Klingons next season. 

Better Trek?

I’m having trouble thinking of any that fit in thematically that I would call better. I can think of a few TNG ones. There’s Journey’s End which is the last Wesley Crusher episode. The Traveller is back. There are Native Americans for some reason. There are Cardassians. The Federation needs to move the Native Americans even though they had a treaty. It’s heavy handed and it sucks. If you want to watch a real piece of garbage that’d be the one. 

Star Trek: Insurrection also deals with similar themes. A violent people displacing a peaceful group of folks who seem to never age. A lot of people criticized this movie for just looking and feeling like a long episode. I don’t understand that as a reason not to like it. I like episodes of Star Trek. That’s why I watch them. This is longer and has better effects. Cool. I think it’s a solid movie. I don’t know if I’d say better than Errand of Mercy. But Insurrection is solid and I like it. 
Kirk talking about innocents. One of the best Trek quotes of all time. 

Last but not least would be TNG’s The Ensigns of Command. A lot to love about this one. Solid Data performance. Solid story. And Picard knocks it out of the goddamned park. The Enterprise is trying to convince the stubborn leader of a community who crash-landed on a planet years prior. He’s proud of the community him and his followers have built and he doesn’t want to abandon it without a fight. Data has to convince him otherwise. At the same time, Picard is trying to buy some time with the aliens who plan on taking that planet over. They’re the Sheliak and they’re a bunch of assholes. 

That's it for this week. A lot of good episodes in a row. It's a good thing that I already watched the next one and it sucks. So, I'll be able to get some vitriol out. 


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