A BETTER VOTING CHOICE

9c28a3556e27bb30f5ccbbc48223063c1On November 8 most Americans will hold their nose and vote for someone they really don’t like all that much. Many Republicans are experiencing a form of buyers remorse with Mr. Trump and Democrats really felt the Bern over the summer but the deck was stacked against them. So, what to do?

Mrs. Greenbean and I are seriously considering if we should write someone in–if nothing else so we can sleep at night with a clear conscience. For a fleeting moment I thought about writing in Captain Kirk. Kim thought about Dumbledore for President. That got me to thinking. If I were voting, which make believe ticket would I choose? I came up with four for you to choose from, since there are four on the ballot, if we include the Libertarians and Greens.

Dumbledore/Snadesign-692-2013-06-25-06-45-551pe–The problem with these two is citizenship but being wizards and all, they should be able to take care of that with a flick of the wand.  I suspect a Dumbledore/Snape administration would be able to fix the national debt, but it would also introduce unknown variables, like, You Know Who.

Palpatine/Vader–From the Star Wars universe it is tempting to put forth a Skywalker/Solo ticket, but my impression is that the Jedi, for all their heroism, are not all that bright or perceptive. Han Solo would never be able to get away from the corruption of the smugglers. Besides, the Emperor and Darth Vader have a lot of experience at governance. This is your, “Law and Order” ticket.

Picard/Riker–I know, I know, I thought about it long and hard, but Captain Kirk would make a terrible POTUS. Picard is a diplomat. What I would really like is a Picard/Spock ticket. That would truly be The Best Of Both Worlds. A Picard/Riker ticket would create jobs and end corruption. The downside is Riker would blow up the ship.555021_11

Frodo/Sam–There are a lot of options from the LOTR universe, but I don’t think Gandalf is reliable enough to stick around–he up and disappears as he pleases–and Aragorn, though he has a great lineage doesn’t really have what it takes to fix our problems. We can make him Secretary of Defense, perhaps. A Baggins/Gamgee ticket would guarantee that the pubs are always open and that the potatoes are always cooked.untitled

So, who would you vote for? Vote below–and check back often to see who is winning.

STAR TREK HAPPY ANNY

Kirk_and_Spock[1].jpgI have used a lot of digital ink in this blog over the years on Star Trek, so there is little I could add, but that will not stop me. picard_starts_his_mozart_recording1

Here are some of my favorite Star Trek moments. I emphasize some, because let’s face it, most any Star Trek moment is better than a non-Star Trek moment.

Kirk’s style.

Picard’s humanity.

Janeway’s gambling.

Sisko’s transformation.

Archer’s exuberance.

Spock mind melding with a brick. That was epic.

Klingon guile.

Picard mind melding with Sarek, Spock’s dad, and then being the conduit for Spock and his father to have something akin to closure.

I think he did a little too much LDS.

Data defeating the Borg Queen.

The uniforms in Star Trek Voyager were awesome. I never understood Seven’s particular get-up (other than eye candy), but aside from that, those were the best designed uniforms across the spectrum.

Romulan Ale.

Khan in Space Seed and The Wrath of Khan. Not JJverse Khan.

Riker’s beard.

The theme song to Star Trek Voyager. I still get all goosebumpy when I hear it.

Picard’s flute.

The episode where Kirk fools the Enterprise computer by asking it to compute Pi to the end decimal.

Andorians. I love Andorians.

Fascinating.

Shaka, when the walls fell.

Weyoun. Any episode with a Weyoun in it was a good day.

Which side of the body is white? Which side of the body is black? Yeah, that still speaks to me.

Our Man Bashir.

Bashir and O’Brien’s friendship–and their obsession with The Alamo.

I’m a doctor, not a . . .

Spock and Uhura–never saw that coming.

What does God need with a starship?

The character arc for Seven. It was stunning to watch develop.

There. Are. Four. Lights.

Ezri Dax.

Borg implants.

Yesterday’s Enterprise.

Porthos’ cheese addiction.

Birds of Prey decloaking.

Elim Garak.

Okay, I have to stop. I could do this all day. All week. All year. I may go watch some Star Trek tonight.

Live long and prosper.

Oh, one more.

 

 

STAR TREK BEYOND–REVIEW

beyondLast night my wife and I went out and watched the new Star Trek film with some great friends that go way back to college. I was fairly nerding out, because I wore my LLAP–Live Long and Prosper–shirt.

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I’m the one in the cool shirt #LLAP

 

Only mild spoilers follow–but nothing significant.

First Take

On first take, the movie was fun. If you like Star Trek, you’ll at least like this movie. It wasn’t the greatest, it wasn’t the smartest, it wasn’t the best plot, but it was Star Trek. In fact, it was super Star Trekky. My friend and I had the same observation leaving. We both felt like it was an episode of TOS (The Original Series) on steroids. In fact, no Star Trek fan would have been surprised by any of the material in the movie, but would have loved every bit of it as familiar, like a comfortable pair of jeans, or an old friend.

The acting, as always, was great. I am really digging the ensemble cast. Anton Yelchin will be greatly missed in the future. Karl Urban has nailed Dr. McCoy. I am certain DeForest Kelley is smiling, as is Leonard Nimoy.

Idris Elba’s talent, though, was mostly wasted. As is typical in Trek films, the bad guy is usually just too much of a cliche to be much of a real character. The only exception, of course, is Ricardo Montalban. And the Borg Queen.

The only technical thing that bothered me was the blurriness of the Justin Lin action sequences. At times it was difficult to discern exactly what was going on.

Second Take

I turn to my 16 year old sprout for analysis. She and the older sprout saw the film in a different theater from us. The first thing she said to me was, “It reminded me of Insurrection.”

She’s right. The crew on a planet. Something about stopping aging, and a doomsday weapon.  Yeah, that’s Insurrection alright.

I also spotted a lot of Star Trek: Enterprise in there, too. Enterprise was the worst of all the TV shows, but in the Kelvin Timeline (which started with the JJ Abrams reboot) the only television show still active is the Scott Bakula led Enterprise. There were so many references to that failed endeavor–the ship, the Xindi, MACO, and the jumpsuits–all come flooding back. Scotty even shouts at one point something about, “Polarizing the hull plating.”  Really?

Really?

The sad thing is, as much as I disliked Enterprise, there was great satisfaction in seeing all of that. It was the first of the reboots that really deals faithfully with the universe we Star Trek fans love so much. Now all I’m waiting for is a movie that features Voyager references or a very angry Benjamin Sisko.

Third Take

I tried to stay away from reviews, because I don’t like spoilers. The thing I heard the most was about the Sulu character’s sexuality.  Spoiler–he is gay. I didn’t think this was a big deal, and it wasn’t really a big deal in the movie. It reflects what we might expect in the Roddenberry view of the future. Anyone upset about a gay Sulu or troubled by that needs to remember all the aliens Kirk and Riker bedded. Does anyone remember the opening sequences of Star Trek Into Darkness where Kirk is in bed with two aliens that have feline tails? If differing sexuality troubles you, I suggest you steer clear of Star Trek. In contrast, there was almost no actual sex or romance in this film–in contrast to so many of the others.

The reference to Beastie Boys as ‘classical music’ was hilarious and typical Star Trek, which is always trying to shove contemporary elements, like Nazis, the US space program, or Roswell into the plot. Besides, one of the coolest Sci-Fi things ever was the use of “All Along The Watchtower” in the Battlestar Galactica series.

I hated the motorbike, though. Hated. It. Completely.

Final Take

If you like Star Trek, I think you’ll love it. There are tons of Easter eggs for you. If you like Sci-Fi in general, you’ll like it. If you like space movies, you’ll like it. If you’re looking for something like Wrath of Khan or The Voyage Home, you’ll be disappointed.

 

 

LUKE SKWALKER VERSUS SPOCK

Its ridiculous.

I know that, so don’t point it out and indulge me.

I was wearing one of my favorite Christmas presents this week, which is a black t-shirt with LLAP on it. Of course, LLAP is short for the Vulcan greeting and salutation, “Live long and prosper.”

Somehow in the course of the day, I began to think about who I would rather have in a pinch–a Jedi or Spock?

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In my honest opinion, Luke Skywalker is the greatest of the Jedi because he defeated Darth Vader, Emperor Palpatine, and only had about forty five minutes of training from Yoda to learn everything. There might be other, greater Vulcans than Spock, but he is the one I know the most about, and he is the only Vulcan who has the coolness factor.

Just to clarify, when I say Spock, I mean Leonard Nimoy as Spock.

So, Luke Skywalker and Spock are in a pitched battle against each other for survival. Who do you got?

I got Spock. I think if they were at odds with each other, Spock would win nine times out of ten. Here is why.

  1. Jedi are stupid. Their abilities make them intellectually lazy. That is the only explanation I have for why they didn’t spot Palpaltine as Sith, or why Yoda and Kenobi didn’t both go after Palpatine together, then Vader.  Why divide up like that? Oh, I know, stupid.
  2. It might take time, but Spock would invent some kind of device that would neutralize Skywalker’s lightsaber.
  3. Do you think Jedi mind tricks would work on Spock. Of course not.
  4. Vulcans have their own paranormal mumbo jumbo going for them, which would offset some of Luke’s Jedi powers. Spock did one time mind meld with a brick, remember?
  5. In a world with Jedi, Spock would have a blood sample with midi-chlorians, find a way to kill them, and thus end Skywalker’s powers. He could defeat Skywalker without having to kill him.
  6. Spock would dodge one slash of the lightsaber, then put a Vulcan nerve pinch on Luke. Game. Set. Match.

I’m sure I missed something, but I think Spock would make quick work of the Jedi master. Now, give me some time to think about James Bond versus Harry Potter.