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[OA] Overthinkers Anonymous notes on ST: Picard S01E03

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#1 Orpheus

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Posted 27 February 2020 - 06:28 PM

[06:00] When the camera drew back, I was stunned at how dimunitive Zani was vs. the others--a testament to Amirah Vann's gravitas/dignity

[08:48] "Vast quantities of stuff"
We're talking the Whole Universe here. Is that all there is? YES! Unless you grew up in sub/hyper space. She sounds like she's starring in "For White Girls who considered Suicide/When the Universe is Enuf" (Ntozake Shange's less-known play).

Also, something about the way she bounced up the stairs and this conversation makes me think she has a liitle crush on Rios

"over three billion stars in our galaxy alone, and ours is one of two trillion... a septillion known planets"

Does Google only reach the Alpha quadrant? How about Paul Woodmansee?

Even if I give Agnes a break and strike the "known" from "planets", don't let her numbers infiltrate your head. There are (gravitationally estimated) 100-400 billion stars in the Milky Way and 100-200 billion galaxies. Planets? Well, there's that break I promised you. Maybe.

Hide: math

[10:15] A holodeck on a one-man ship? From the few external shots we've seen, taking the bridge windows for scale, the main hull is barely large enough to contain the two-level main deck. That's a big Chekovian gun to hang on the wall. It better become essential later.

OTOH, a holodeck [in a storage room) might be a cheap upgrade when you have a full suite of holograms roaming in (and over) a ship.

[11:44] "Did I say I was eager?... Do I seem eager to you?" -- comically transparent

[13:17] "Romulan warrior nuns"
What next? Vulcan attack clowns? Horta sex workers? Klingon butlers? No... Klingon tribble-barbers!

[15:50] That lingering shot through the holoscreen superposing Ramdha's features onto Soji was clearly intentional/significant, but I have no idea what it means.

[18:00] "Jolan Tru... Jolan Tru.... Jolan Tru..." (to the tune of "Be our guest" or other ditty)
We see Picard beam down via unseen eyes through a grated window, hinting at an oppressive regime. We see people with (Romulan Rebirth?) armbands, carrying swords. The "Romulans Only" sign is distasteful--but exclusion is common (if often veiled) on modern Earth. I can't say if some on the street (not just the cafe) recognized him, and were pointedly ignoring him, or if the public was just generally wary and somber.

[22:28] I was glad to see Narek confront Soji. Their mutual distrust was tiresome. Indeed, their whole impetuous affair made little sense to me, despite the seemingly unconquerable pretzel logic of youthful hormones (which, I suppose, was the point of the Bollywood-like sock-slide).

The paranoid Romulans would have thoroughly investigated (and monitored) ANYONE allowed on the Artifact. Dr. Kunamadestifee had her residency cancelled (and reinstated 6mos later) with no reason given. (Was she written just to say that? Or will the "fruit" of her research appear?)

It's striking that the Twins penetrated the two most secured spaces we've seen: Daystrom (recall the biometric doors) and The Artifact. If Dahj was sent after info (or physical bits) of Data, B4 or even possibly Lore, what was Soji sent after? The truth about the Shaenor? Species 8472 (and many others, including the Borg themselves) might be interested in that

I had mentally dismissed Lore, assuming I had simply forgotten his destruction, but I learned that the disposition of his body is unknown. He was disassembled to be sent to the Federation (likely Daystrom) for study, but some say Data kept him (I don't know the basis for this)

[31:15] For some reason, on first viewing, I assumed Picard provoked the Romulan cafe to force Elnor to come to his aid. Though he mentioned ethnic strife to Zani, it didn't seem a rational fight to pick when he already had a mission. Maybe his parietal lesion was acting up.

"Parietal lesion" reminded me about the Bynar, who have parietal brain implants -- and come in pairs. Stewart and Frakes have both said they wanted to bring them back someday.

[36:21] "Fight a Qowat Malat, and the outcome is not in doubt"
Ah, but he's not a Qowat Malat, and never can be. I'll cut him some slack, and assume everyone in town knew of his training.

[37:50] "You been studying her kind your entire adult life"
At first I was impressed: Studying her kind his whole adult life? How? She's only existed 3 years. Were there earlier android incidents?

Then I remembered his youth:his  whole adult life might have been 3 years--or less. I don't know the Romulan age of majority or how they adolesce/age.

#2 Christopher

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Posted 27 February 2020 - 06:55 PM

View PostOrpheus, on 27 February 2020 - 06:28 PM, said:

"over three billion stars in our galaxy alone, and ours is one of two trillion... a septillion known planets"

I'm trying to remember if Jurati was on-camera when she said "three billion." I think she was, but if not, it's possible the line was scripted as "three hundred billion" and an editor got a bit overzealous. Or maybe there was a typo in her script. (Like in the Supergirl episode where Lex Luthor said Epicurus lived "280 years ago" instead of 2300.)



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[10:15] A holodeck on a one-man ship? From the few external shots we've seen, taking the bridge windows for scale, the main hull is barely large enough to contain the two-level main deck. That's a big Chekovian gun to hang on the wall. It better become essential later.

Given that Rios is a pilot for hire, it makes sense that he'd have holographic guest quarters that could be configured to the preferences of his passengers.

Anyway, it seems to me that the holodeck is essential in the sense that it lets the show keep using the set it built for Picard's study.


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I can't say if some on the street (not just the cafe) recognized him, and were pointedly ignoring him, or if the public was just generally wary and somber.

I think it's a safe bet that they recognize the leader of the fleet that relocated them to Vashti to escape annihilation in a supernova. We saw in the teaser/flashback that he did visit the world periodically to check on their progress. (The backstory to this is in the tie-in novel The Last Best Hope.)


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I had mentally dismissed Lore, assuming I had simply forgotten his destruction, but I learned that the disposition of his body is unknown. He was disassembled to be sent to the Federation (likely Daystrom) for study, but some say Data kept him (I don't know the basis for this)

No canonical basis, but it's established in Jeffrey Lang's novel Immortal Coil.

Also, "Descent" never said anything about Lore being sent anywhere for study, only that he was dismantled.


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For some reason, on first viewing, I assumed Picard provoked the Romulan cafe to force Elnor to come to his aid. Though he mentioned ethnic strife to Zani, it didn't seem a rational fight to pick when he already had a mission.

I think the impulse to defy a "No X Allowed" sign is highly understandable. Maybe his judgment was poor, but his idealism is intact. And I think there's an element of arrogance intended in the scripts, the idea that Picard is accustomed to getting his way and convincing others of his viewpoint, and maybe it hasn't quite sunk in that that's harder to do when he doesn't have a huge starship and a mighty civilization to back him up.


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[37:50] "You been studying her kind your entire adult life"
At first I was impressed: Studying her kind his whole adult life? How? She's only existed 3 years. Were there earlier android incidents?

Data and his kin were "her kind." Literally, if she's his daughter in a sense.


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Then I remembered his youth:his  whole adult life might have been 3 years--or less. I don't know the Romulan age of majority or how they adolesce/age.

No doubt the same as Vulcans, since they're the same species. And given that Amanda was probably no older than her 60s in "Journey to Babel," it stands to reason that Spock was close to Leonard Nimoy's age and that Vulcans mature to adulthood at a similar rate to humans, even though they age more slowly thereafter.
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#3 RJDiogenes

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Posted 27 February 2020 - 09:02 PM

View PostOrpheus, on 27 February 2020 - 06:28 PM, said:

Hide: math
Give this a title and reformat it as dialogue, and you'll have the saddest SF short story ever written.

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Vulcan attack clowns?  
And here we have the happiest SF short story ever written.

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Dr. Kunamadestifee had her residency cancelled (and reinstated 6mos later) with no reason given. (Was she written just to say that? Or will the "fruit" of her research appear?)  
I forgot about her.  Talk about Chekov's phaser.

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I had mentally dismissed Lore, assuming I had simply forgotten his destruction, but I learned that the disposition of his body is unknown. He was disassembled to be sent to the Federation (likely Daystrom) for study, but some say Data kept him (I don't know the basis for this)  
Well, Lore was guilty of many crimes, so it's certainly possible that the Federation could have claimed him on that basis, given that he could be reactivated. Data could possibly have claimed him as next of kin, but I think Lore's status as galactic criminal would probably take precedence. Beta, on the other hand, was guilty of nothing, and needed a keeper. But Data died soon after his discovery. So who would the Federation have granted custody to?  Picard and Maddox both would have petitioned, no doubt.  But when Beta died, perhaps Picard thought it best for Maddox to have him.

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Maybe his parietal lesion was acting up.  
I'm going to go with that.  He's never been that stupid before.
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#4 Cybersnark

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Posted 28 February 2020 - 10:24 AM

View PostChristopher, on 27 February 2020 - 06:55 PM, said:

View PostOrpheus, on 27 February 2020 - 06:28 PM, said:

"over three billion stars in our galaxy alone, and ours is one of two trillion... a septillion known planets"

I'm trying to remember if Jurati was on-camera when she said "three billion." I think she was, but if not, it's possible the line was scripted as "three hundred billion" and an editor got a bit overzealous. Or maybe there was a typo in her script. (Like in the Supergirl episode where Lex Luthor said Epicurus lived "280 years ago" instead of 2300.)
Or maybe people don't pull mathematically exact figures out of their heads when making casual small talk.

I know, completely unheard of in the history of sci-fi (where "5000 years ago" is expected to mean 5000 years to the day).


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Quote

[37:50] "You been studying her kind your entire adult life"
At first I was impressed: Studying her kind his whole adult life? How? She's only existed 3 years. Were there earlier android incidents?

Data and his kin were "her kind." Literally, if she's his daughter in a sense.
And we know there've been androids (of one type or another) around since before TOS. Kirk used to stumble across them every few months. It's entirely possible the Romulans had encounters with them.
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#5 Christopher

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Posted 28 February 2020 - 10:39 AM

View PostCybersnark, on 28 February 2020 - 10:24 AM, said:

Or maybe people don't pull mathematically exact figures out of their heads when making casual small talk.

Mathematical exactness has nothing to do with it. If you have even a casual acquaintance with the subject, you can at least get the order of magnitude right. If you asked the average person what the current population of Earth was, most of them might not get close to the correct 7.7 billion figure, but at least any reasonably educated person would know it was somewhere between 5 and 10 billion. If someone said there were only 70 million people on Earth, that's far worse than inexact, it's not even in the ballpark.



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And we know there've been androids (of one type or another) around since before TOS. Kirk used to stumble across them every few months. It's entirely possible the Romulans had encounters with them.

Indeed, and the Zhat Vash seem to have been working for centuries to destroy them wherever they crop up. Maybe that's why we saw so few AIs in the TNG era compared to the TOS era. Maybe the Zhat Vash destroyed most of them in the interim.
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#6 FarscapeOne

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Posted 28 February 2020 - 03:01 PM

That's a good theory on the lack of androids in TNG when TOS was full of them.

#7 Orpheus

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Posted 05 March 2020 - 07:07 PM

I just wanted to say how much I like this discussion.

One off-beat question, though: how old would you say Soji and Narek are "meant" to be, in current terms, in the audience's eyes?

I'd guess early-to-mid 20s  but "apparent age" is a social construct, a contract with the audience's expectations, and I'm a bit out of touch with that.

#8 RJDiogenes

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Posted 05 March 2020 - 08:15 PM

Well, aside from the fact that anything under forty is get-the-hell-off-my-lawn (especially in this age of unending adolescence), I'd say that Soji is fresh-out-of-college-age and Narek is meant to be just-under-thirty.
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#9 FarscapeOne

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Posted 06 March 2020 - 01:45 AM

Given how long Vulcan lifespans are, Romulans can look like 30 but really be 80.

I just remembered... Senator Pardek was chatting with Spock for decades, so Romulans likely have a similar lifespan as their close cousins.

#10 RJDiogenes

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Posted 06 March 2020 - 07:53 PM

Good thought.  I hope he's about 75.  There would be backlash!  And outrage!  :lol:
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