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THE ORVILLE - S2, E1: "JA'LOJA"...


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#1 FarscapeOne

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Posted 30 December 2018 - 09:17 AM

As The Orville heads towards Moclus for Bortus' special once-a-year ceremony, Ed discovers Kelly has moved on and has started dating. Meanwhile, Gordon asks for John's help in getting game, and Claire turns to Isaac for parenting advice.

#2 FarscapeOne

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Posted 30 December 2018 - 09:18 AM

I am sadly working tonight, so I will have to wait until tomorrow to watch.

But I am THRILLED to have THE ORVILLE back!

#3 RJDiogenes

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Posted 30 December 2018 - 05:12 PM

It's about time!  I wish I had had a chance to watch my DVDs of the first season, but that's life in the big city.  It will be great to have Orville back again, and chances look good for a third season already.
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#4 Orpheus

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Posted 31 December 2018 - 02:10 AM

I've been forcing people (especially those who gave up on it after the premiere) through the painful first episodes until the show starts gaining its legs. Their enthusiasm is so rewarding as they see it's getting better.

Or maybe I just enjoy forcing people through painful things. That would explain so much.

#5 Jorgasnarova

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Posted 31 December 2018 - 09:54 PM

I suspect most of the poor reviews came from watchers who had only viewed "Old Wounds," the pilot episode.

I recall watching "Old Wounds" and being unimpressed with its machine gun toss-jokes-out-500-a-minute-and-hope-some-work approach; if this was representative of the series as a whole, it would get very tired very quickly, I thought.

With the next episode "Command Performance" the show instantly transformed from a zany comedy with drama moments to a drama with comedy moments, a format change that I thought worked quite well.  

"Ja'loja" was, if I am interpreting the production codes on Wikipedia correctly, the very first episode filmed for season 2.  A very watchable season premiere, I thought.  And very McFarlany-Orville brilliance to have the show structured around a portentiously important ceremonial whiz off of a mountain top.

I am becoming very impressed with Mike Henry as Dann.  His comedy timing is wonderful, even encased in heavy make up.

Michaela McManus as the new Lt. will be making additional appearances, if IMDB can be believed.  She previously appeared in season one's "Krill" playing the Krill woman Teleya.

Edited by Jorgasnarova, 31 December 2018 - 09:55 PM.


#6 Orpheus

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 01:17 AM

IIRC, he played essentially [stunningly] the same alien character in different makeup in "People of Earth" [TBS], which had been renewed for a third season this year, but was suddenly cancelled this summer.

You should check that series out. Give it time; it will grow on you. On top of that, it has scattered moments of daring briliance. Could one ask for more?

[Disclaimer: I spent summer '73 in Beacon, NY, in the care of an "uncle" and his colleagues from IBM Fishkill/Armonk. It was almost exactly as portrayed. As regards aliens: this deponent sayeth naught.]

Edited by Orpheus, 01 January 2019 - 01:21 AM.
Edited to add: [Now that I think about it, that actor was portrayed as much shorter -- but the character is identical down to the mannerisms]


#7 Jorgasnarova

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 02:10 AM

Are you referring to the character Jeff the Gray in "People of Earth?"  That character was played by Ken Hall, not Mike Henry, although now that I think about it there are certainly vocal and other similarities between the two characters.  

And yes, "People of Earth" was another show that ended too soon.

#8 Orpheus

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 02:45 PM

Yes, I realized after posting that they were very different body types.

From the first, I (mistakenly) felt that Dann was an almost direct copy of Jeff, which very much diminished my enjoyment of that character. I now realize that Dann borrows traits from a number of familiar "goofy" characters which I wrongly back-mapped onto Jeff (who in turn borrowed from a similar pool). For example, I could have sworn I recalled Jeff using the word "sweetness" as a one-word reply, as Dann did here, but I'm now pretty sure I was thinking of Brian Posehn (e.g. Bert Kibbler on Big Bang Theory) -- and I think it may simply be an idiomatic usage in some dialect that I don't hear locally. Surfer, maybe?

I hope I'll be able to enjoy Dann more now. It had really been bugging me.

#9 RJDiogenes

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 05:52 PM

Yeah, that was definitely a low-key season premiere. No invasions, supernovae, space battles, ray gun blasts, or space fu fights. I loved it, but I hope it doesn't hurt the ratings.

The main plot of Bortus needing to return to his home planet to urinate (talk about a shy bladder) was obviously an homage to Spock's mating impulse. Sort of a mock time. But there were no complications and Bortus was apparently able to relieve himself without incident. Of course, it's hard to imagine how ritual urination could lead to Bortus and Mercer getting into a fight to the death over a woman, but it sort of emphasizes how this was sort of a week-in-the-life episode for the crew, with no overall conflict or antagonist.  

Secondary to that plot was the ongoing saga of Mercer and Grayson's relationship status. Mercer is now openly gung ho about getting back together, while Grayson appears to be moving on.  Mercer does the lonely ex drive-by thing-- in spaaaace-- and gets caught. I'm sure this will trigger the same conservative backlash that the Rob Lowe episode did last season, which should be fun to watch. But Grayson's too-good-to-be-true boyfriend is very understanding, which makes me think he is indeed too good to be true.  And therefore doomed.

Alara, meanwhile, is still having guy problems, which is probably the most far-fetched plot device on this over-the-top sci-fi show.  But in a hilarious interaction with Bortus, she allows herself to be set up on a blind date with a guy-- who turns out to be Dan.  :lol:  Who almost immediately bonds with her, and starts writing poetry and text nagging her.  No wonder she's going to leave the show.

Dr. Finn's plot involves her boring kids again, but the interesting part was her developing relationship with Isaac. I wonder if there is an inter-species romance in the making here. Last year, Finn got it on with an alien made of jelly and this year she's hanging out with a robot-- she seems to have exotic tastes.  :lol:

Lamarr doesn't have much to do in this episode except help Gordon try to make time with the new female crewmember, which doesn't work out too well ("Can't do it-- thanks for the help.").  But the interesting thing here was that this actress is the same one who played the Krill who vowed vengeance on Mercer last season.   I've seen speculation that this is a counter infiltration, which is definitely possible, especially given how the new character sought out Mercer at the bar.

All in all, it was a nice reintroduction to the ship and the crew, highlighting their unique personalities and lifestyles. I just hope that the lack of explosions doesn't turn off an audience that suffers from a negative attention span.
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#10 FarscapeOne

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 06:03 PM

I thought it was a great episode.  Humor in the right spots, everyone acting like real people... all things that I've loved about this show.

Interesting theory regarding Lt. Tyler, since the same actress played that Krill.  We don't know what was done with her at the end of that episode... either taken as a prisoner or sent back with the Krill children.  Although given that Lt. Tyler of STAR TREK:  DISCOVERY was discovered to be an altered Klingon agent, having a same last name character from another series it is always compared to ending up witha similar fate... I don't think it likely.

It was a low key season premiere, and I loved it for that.  Last time I saw one this low key was the DS9 season 7premiere, and that worked out very well, partly because it set up other things.  I have a feeling this one is doing the same job.

#11 Orpheus

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 06:50 PM

I hope so. I was a bit underwhelmed. It was all about interpersonals and didn't have any sort of theme or message at all. All B- or C-plot in search of a man with a horse. Not a bad episode, but piss-weak.

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#12 G-man

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 07:27 PM

Wasn't Alara's super-strength the issue?  I thought they mentioned that it intimidated the guys to whom she was attracted.

OTOH, I do wish that Alara and Capt. Mercer had developed a platonic brother-sister working relationship, thus depicting that a guy and a girl could be just friends.  It looked like them drinking together could've developed into something ... pity he waved off her sympathetic ear.

/s/

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#13 RJDiogenes

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 07:39 PM

View PostG-man, on 01 January 2019 - 07:27 PM, said:

Wasn't Alara's super-strength the issue?  I thought they mentioned that it intimidated the guys to whom she was attracted.  
That's what they said, but it made little sense-- especially on a ship with hundreds of people.

Quote

OTOH, I do wish that Alara and Capt. Mercer had developed a platonic brother-sister working relationship, thus depicting that a guy and a girl could be just friends.    
She seems to have that kind of relationship with Gordon and Lamarr.
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#14 Cardie

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 11:01 PM

I find the way MacFarlane writes relationships cringeworthy, so a whole episode of them did not make me as happy as others here seem. Only Clare and Isaac were interesting, probably because she took the lead and we aren't getting another of the infinite variations on the sad-sack guy who cannot understand why the beautiful girls never end up with him. Those sort of creep me out.
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#15 Cybersnark

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Posted 02 January 2019 - 11:26 AM

View PostJorgasnarova, on 31 December 2018 - 09:54 PM, said:

Michaela McManus as the new Lt. will be making additional appearances, if IMDB can be believed.  She previously appeared in season one's "Krill" playing the Krill woman Teleya.

Hmm. "Teleya" - "Tyler."

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#16 gsmonks

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Posted 02 January 2019 - 03:48 PM

Our local networks have an annoying habit of moving shows around. I missed the 1st episode because it wasn't where it was advertised to be.
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