February 9, 2020
I’ve just watched the third episode of Star Trek: Picard, and am able to say as a matter of absolute fact that this show alone is enough to do a real Holocaust of the Jews. Literally no one could put forward any defense of these people if you fired up the gas chambers and said “this is because you made that Picard show.”
As my previous piece on the show was popular, and because I now look forward to this show more than any show I’ve watched in a long time, due to the sick sort of pleasure I get from hating it, I will now be posting reviews of each episode. If the reader is not a Star Trek fan, this may or may not be interesting, but it will be written with the assumption that the reader is a Star Trek fan.
Episode 3 begins, like the last two episodes, with a flashback. This time we learn that Jean-Luc Picard served with this black woman, Raffi Musiker, during the time when he was trying to evacuate the Romulans from the Romulan system, which was destroyed for whatever dumb reason in the 2009 JJ Abrams Star Trek film. He tells the black woman that he resigned from Starfleet because they refused to allow him to launch a second operation to save the Romulans following a situation where androids went crazy for some reason and killed everyone on Mars. They had given in to “intolerance and fear,” says he.
This new timeline is very convoluted and dumb and I’m not really even following it that closely. In fact, I don’t exactly understand the relationship between the androids killing people on Mars and the Romulan evacuation. However, I can say that there was no new information introduced in this flashback. When I was watching it, I thought to myself that the stage was being set for episode 3 to be another episode 2 in which nothing actually happened.
Raffi, who apparently was the main creator of the plan, then gets a call from Starfleet and she is fired because she supported Picard.
The purpose of the scene, apparently, was to once again press home the fact that the Federation is now an evil Donald Trumpian monstrosity, which does not care about saving the galaxy and just wants refugees to die. Just in case you, the viewer, had not grasped this yet from the first two episodes. Just in case that empowered female dropping an f-bomb on Picard hadn’t convinced you.
The Star Trek universe is now a very dark place, you see. It is edgy. There are CIA organizations everywhere doing all kinds of sick schemes, women dropping f-bombs, all kinds of hardcore crap. This ain’t your daddy’s Trek, kid. We’re in a whole new ballgame. This is no longer an idealistic vision of a future where humanity overcomes baser instincts and becomes a light of goodness in the galaxy. This is antifa in space, kid.
We then head to where we left off at the end of episode 2, with Picard having gone to visit the strong black woman at her desert trailer. At least the trailer looks pretty cool.
That’s really the only positive thought you ever have anywhere in this entire show – “hm, that looks pretty cool.” Like Discovery, it looks like a movie. The CGI is incredibly clean, the sets look great, and the cinematography is on-point. Of course, “visual stimulation” was never the selling point of any Star Trek show, and the minimalist sets, effects and camerawork were endearing to fans. This show is not for Star Trek fans, however. As has been said, we do not have any idea who it is for, but we are quite certain it is explicitly not aimed at Star Trek fans.
Outside the trailer, Raffi berates and abuses him, as all women he ever comes in contact with do in this show. We get another r-rated curse word as she tells him “you have some goddamn nerve.” (Very similar to the “sheer fucking hubris” of the Starfleet admiral.) This show could be called “Old Man Gets Abused by Strong Women,” which would be accurate. Calling it “Star Trek” is just a lie and a hoax.
The strong black woman vapes as she glares at him menacingly.
According to Star Trek Wiki Memory Alpha, she would be the first person to ever use a tobacco product in the 24th century. Gene Roddenberry made it a point that in his ideal vision of the future, people had completely quit smoking. In fact, there was only ever one human seen smoking in the 23rd century – and he was under the telepathic control of a rogue Vulcan. Memory Alpha is going to have a lot of work to do to incorporate this new show with all of these brave new ideas about how the Federation became evil and everyone slinked back into degeneracy at the end of the 24th century because of Donald Trump. They’ve already got a page up about “snakeleaf,” a drug that Raffi grows and takes.
She also uses the internet slang word “protip,” in line with this show’s reveal that also in the latter half of the 24th century, people all of a sudden started using millennial slang for no reason.
This scene communicates to the viewer that Picard himself is now a bastard, and abandoned his friends after he resigned from Starfleet. Because – dark, man. This show is like, dark.
As Raffi is berating Picard, she shouts “don’t touch me” and gets up and flees with her bottle.
Picard is left to consider what a bad person he is now, and we’re reminded that despite his age and his personal obsession with hating Donald Trump and Brexit – which is apparently why he agreed to do this show – Patrick Stewart is still a very expressive actor, which is this show’s only other selling point beyond the visuals.
We then head back to the decommissioned Borg Cube, where there is a group of Romulans going through the wreckage and reclaiming technology.
This is where the hapa android that Picard wants to save is living for some reason as she engages in an illicit sexual affair with a “totally hot” Romulan who is pumping her for information as part of an evil plot by the Romulans, or the Federation, or something. Again, I am myself watching this show, and I am a lifelong fan of Star Trek, but I honestly can’t manage to follow the plot.
The thing is, I think this is the way the show is meant to be watched. I don’t think that the plot is meant to be followed. It is apparently purposefully constructed of cues which reference typical cinema tropes and cliches. So the role of “shadowy bad guy” is simply “shadowy bad guy.” Everyone knows what a shadowy bad guy is, so there is no need to elaborate.
The de-assimilated Borg, Hugh – a character returning from Star Trek: The Next Generation – has really great makeup.
Definitely a big improvement over Seven of Nine, who just had a piece of gray plastic glued to her forehead.
Quickly moving back to strong black woman’s trailer, because the pacing mechanism of this show is simply bizarre, we again learn something we already knew, as Picard tells strong black woman that the Federation is involved in a Romulan plot or the Romulans control the Federation or something.
The viewer is left wondering why it is that Picard has any desire to bring this mean, drunken, drug-rattled black trailer woman on his mission in the first place. It is said that she can obtain a ship, but surely, the former high-ranking admiral in Starfleet knows more than one person that can obtain a ship, doesn’t he?
Picard finally leaves the black woman to her drunkenness after she at last finishes berating him, but she tells him she’s got a pilot for him.
We then cut to the Daystrom Institute in Okinawa, which Picard had previously visited to meet a strong woman scientist who knows about androids. The strong female scientist is visited by a villainous Federation figure who is either Vulcan or Romulan (you can’t tell in this show because they removed the brow ridge from the Romulans, making them indistinguishable from Vulcans).
The woman wants to know just what is going on with the meddling Picard.
Then, at last and finally, Picard beams onto the ship that Raffi had hooked him up with, and we start to believe that maybe, finally, at the halfway point of the third episode, we might see some Star Trekking.
As was to be expected, given all of the tropes, the pilot of the ship fits in with the “rag-tag band” trope. Picard finds him with a hilarious piece of shrapnel sticking out of his shoulder as he sits drinking Aguardiente and… smoking a cigar.
And of course reading a book. The paper kind of book.
There is never any explanation as to how, while sitting in his ship docked in orbit, he got a large piece of shrapnel stuck in his shoulder, which is in keeping with this show’s modus operandi, which is “just make it look cool.”
The conversation these two have is weird and dumb and meaningless, and we learn that Stars will not yet be Trekked.
There is also an artificially intelligent hologram. For some reason, AI holograms are not banned, even though the AI androids are banned because of their artificial intelligence. I don’t know what the difference between an intelligent hologram and an intelligent robot.
In an absolutely shocking development, Picard returns to his French Chateau, yet again, with his Irish Romulan nanny and mother figure.
Even if this show didn’t have all of these other problems, I would be saying “was this show supposed to be called ‘Earth Trek’? Why is no one Trekking any Stars in this show?”
By far, the only interesting plot element, from just the most basic standpoint of “I want to know more about this,” is the situation on the Borg Cube, where the hapa android is attempting to uncover mysteries from a de-assimilated Romulan who was the foremost expert in Romulan mythology, and who sits around playing with triangular tarot cards.
What would happen to the mind of an expert on mythology who became a part of the Borg hivemind and then came back out of it is something that could legitimately present an interesting story. (But I can guarantee you that it will not.)
If that is the far end of “maybe interesting,” then the far end of “definitely not interesting at all” are the Romulan biker ninjas, who show up at Chateau Picard for a gunfight just as Picard is leaving for a Trek of the Stars.
Picard sure is lucky that his Romulan house keepers are also ninjas.
I’m just sitting here trying to imagine what kind of diseased mind watched the old Star Trek series and thought “you know what would make this better? Matrix-style fight scenes.”
The fight scene ends and then it starts back up again, and someone from off camera shoots the last remaining Romulan biker ninja. And it turns out to be the timid female scientist from the Daystrom Institute, who apparently just showed up at Chateau Picard, noticed there was a gunfight going on, so she picked up a gun and started shooting!
Of course this scientist was capable of operating a Romulan disruptor rifle and killing an elite Romulan biker ninja. Because all women can do anything, always.
Women are magical, you see. And it is only the patriarchy that prevented female Star Trek characters in the past from being able to do anything at any time. (She’s also clearly a Romulan spy who is infiltrating Picard but will later side with him because she loves his democracy values.)
She then tells Picard about her visit from the Starfleet security official, and says she told her everything about their meetings, because although she can pick up weapons she’s never seen before and use them to kill elite assassins, there is one thing she simply cannot do. “I’m a terrible liar,” she says.
True to life: women can do literally anything at any time, but the one place they fall short is in the ability to communicate false information.
One of the ninjas lives, and Picard interrogates him by asking him questions. For whatever reason, this deadly elite biker assassin member of the Romulan CIA is very happy to talk about his agenda.
He tells Picard that the twin hapa androids are not what he thinks they are. And that he will not find the living one before they do.
Spliced in with that scene is a scene with the living hapa android talking to the de-assimilated Romulan woman. She tells the girl that she knows who she is, and ends up pulling a gun on her, somehow.
Both the Romulans say that the girl is “the destroyer.” So this hapa android is not only the daughter of Data, she is also some kind of Borg somehow for some reason. Interesting.
The biker ninja kills himself with an acid pill – something he apparently had the ability to do the whole time but went ahead and divulged information to the enemy first anyway. The de-commissioned Borg woman tries to kill herself but is stopped.
So there are ten or so bodies on the farm now, and no indication that anyone is planning to call the cops. It’s against the law to get in a shootout with people and then tie them up and interrogate them. The situation couldn’t be explained to the cops. So are the Romulans just going to dispose of the bodies?
It’s a pretty weird image to have Picard ordering his farmhands to dispose of corpses. But I guess he has no other choice, since the Federation has gone completely evil for some reason and no one can trust anyone.
Hapa android begins to realize that her memory is fake, but is reassured everything is fine by her emo Romulan boyfriend.
The emo Romulan has a sister who is some kind of bad guy and believes that in his process of seducing her he is going to truly fall in true love with her.
This was another literal repeat scene from the previous episode.
Again, you don’t even need dialogue in this show. It’s just all the most stale tropes and cliches jammed together with butchered Star Trek lore and high production values.
These Jews said they wanted to “do something new,” so they took the most innovative franchise in television history and turned it into a bunch of boring cliches, vapid drama and fight scenes. That is definitely something new. People gave Enterprise a lot of crap, but at least it was actually Star Trek.
The episode ends with killer scientist lady saying she’s going with Picard, and they beam up to the ship together to find that strong black woman has kicked her drug habit (I guess) and is on the team as well.
The small ship, which I guess is the official ship of this horrible show, looks like crap.
But finally, Picard says “engage.”
We are led to believe that the Star Trekking will begin next episode, but I halfway expect that episode four will start with Picard saying “wait, I forgot something at my Chateau, we have to go back” and then they’ll go back and there will be a ten-minute fight scene with biker ninjas.
And then they will spend another episode with scenes jumping back and forth showing different people having stupid pointless conversations telling us things we already know.
I mean. Wow. Nothing happened in this episode. Just like episode two, it was like being trapped in a washing machine, just going around and around. In many ways, the entire episode three was just a remake of episode two. It was just the same things over and over. Imagine thinking that it made sense for Picard to do a pre-visit to the ship.
Anyone reviewing the scripts for episode two and three would say “these should be combined into one episode, there’s not enough going on here.”
Alex Kurtzman, Michael Chabon and Akiva Goldsman should all be charged with crimes against humanity for creating this show.
And this has got to be the worst part of all of this:
This is a show designed for an “audience score.” It has dumb emotional drama, it has cheap, stupid jokes, it has fight scenes, it has CGI and it has an extremely high production value (probably the most expensive television show ever made, I would guess, at least in the top 3). So I can on some level understand the 74% from the audience.
But the 91% from professional critics is simply insane. There is no way that a critic would not see all of the ridiculous problems with this show, even if they were not Star Trek fans. They are lying, giving fake good reviews, because this is “orange man bad in space.”
I’ll be back next week for episode 4, but I might well do some reviews of the reviews before then.