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Tough, but Fair: Streaming TV Edition

Since I’ve often commented on the future of TV (some of the posts being the most popular), checking out a rundown of all the streaming services seems apropos.

So I had to share this latest installment from the folks over at Honest Trailers:

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2020 Emmys: In Memoriam

TCM usually gets my nod, but the graphics in this one were very well done… (and these are grim times, so I suppose it’s where my head is):

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Art is a Luxury, Except when it’s Sustenance

TED Talks are probably good fodder for Monday Motivation posts, and here’s a good one, especially for creatives wondering about why they’re doing what they’re doing.

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Wait, Tolkien was Working on a LOTR Sequel?!?

Many of you already knew this and (spoiler alert), there’s good reasons why he abandoned the ideas as the video goes into, but I was not aware — and it does touch on some of his writing process and his motivation to write in any case.

John August on Professionalism

Back in 2006, writer John August wrote (and presented) a really great talk called “Professionalism and the Rise of the Amateur.” It drew on his own experience as a writer, but it could be applied to other jobs — basically, anywhere where you’re trying to be “professional” — and what that word means, really.

Well, lots of things have happened since then, as he recounts as he revisits and expands (and corrects) some of those thoughts in “Professionalism in the Age of the Influencer.

Both are worth a read, but feel free to skip to the second one if you’re pressed for time, as he recounts some of the larger points.

A Writer Writes… to What End?

For whatever reason, I’ve been seeing a bunch of memes about writers writing, writers writing ’til they’ve finished (whether or not it’s good, they can always rewrite, etc.) and so on.

So what if you’re wondering about the point of all this? Well, for a motivation Monday, Monica Leonelle has a bunch of questions and exercises to ask yourself.

Now I’m going to get back to writing.

Star Trek Day – Panel Videos

Given my post on Monday, there really wasn’t much doubt that I’d go ahead and link to a bunch of the videos CBS did for Star Trek Day on Tuesday.

They have a bunch more videos on the CBS All Access YouTube channel, some of them snippets of these below, but this should keep you stoked for Trek.

TOS

TNG/Picard

Deep Space Nine

Voyager

Enterprise

Discovery

Lower Decks

Strange New Worlds

Double Dose of Trailers of Fall Sci-Fi

Fresh off of “Star Trek Day,” there’s a new trailer for season three of Star Trek: Discovery.

Plus, some of us have been waiting for the Dune trailer longer than the Bene Gesserit have been planning for the Kwisatz Haderach.

We must not fear.

Every Episode of Every Star Trek Series, Ranked

As long-time readers of this blog know (all seven or nine), I am a bit of a Star Trek fan, as may be deduced from my manic series Crisis of Infinite Star Treks alone.

Cue theme music!

Where that series delves into fannish hand-wringing and minutiae, it did remind my of how much I enjoy Star Trek in its seemingly infinite combinations. I wanted to do something special for its official 50th anniversary, but life has intervened (quantum filaments, holodeck mishaps, Borg incursions… the usual).

So what better way to express rampant fandom while looking back at the history of Star Trek than to rate each of its 700+ episodes? Think of it as a gift of the pandemic (well, for those of us in Sector 001).

Regardless, doing a retrospective of previous TV Trek seemed appropriate before now… and by the time I was fully invested in rewatching and ranking everything, new TV series started appearing (and may never abate). Yes, Lower Decks, the next seasons, of Discovery and Picard, and who knows how many other series will all find their way into the rankings ’cause I’m as foolish as Stamets wanting to do one more jump.

Oh what I wouldn’t give for a fortuitous temporal anomaly right now.

Anyway: to the links! (Not great links, perhaps, but links none-the-less)

Rigorous and logical

The Methodology
The short version? Every TV series (even the original animated one) is in. I had to make command decisions on how to judge two-parters and continuing storyline episodes, so I did. Movies are not included.

Time for peer review!

How to Rank ‘Em Yourself
Even an honest Vulcan will tell you their logic is susceptible to mortal foibles as emotions and other intangibles creep into their calculations. It could be that ranking Star Trek episodes objectively is a no-win scenario, but tell me your Kobayashi Maru solution in the comments, whether it’s the top 10, the whole list, or anything in between (be civil, please).

What if you Object, Dislike, or Outright Hate My Rankings?
No self-respecting Starfleet captain nor honorable Klingon commander would take such injustice lying down. Do something about it!

Is judging better in the original Klingon? I guess we’ll find out.

The Lists

Re-watching (and in some cases, watching) all 700+ episodes of Star Trek took an inordinate amount of time over the past few years, so there’s no way I wasn’t going to comment on everything, including both spoilers… and a certain amount of irreverence. If you’re not ready for potential spoilers and snark, stick to the links marked “episode names only.”

(As alluded above, these lists will be updated as new episodes premiere.
The lists below include all episodes for all series before July 2020)

The Whole Enchilada (All Series)
With Comments (includes possible spoilers & snark) | Episodes names only

Star Trek (The Original Series or TOS)
With Comments (includes possible spoilers & snark) | Episodes names only

Star Trek (The Animated Series or TAS)
With Comments (includes possible spoilers & snark) | Episodes names only

Star Trek: The Next Generation (TNG)
With Comments (includes possible spoilers & snark) | Episodes names only

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (DS9)
With Comments (includes possible spoilers & snark) | Episodes names only

Star Trek: Voyager (VOY)
With Comments (includes possible spoilers & snark) | Episodes names only

Enterprise (later Star Trek: Enterprise or ENT)
With Comments (includes possible spoilers & snark) | Episodes names only

Star Trek: Discovery (DSC)Up through the first two seasons
With Comments (includes possible spoilers & snark) | Episodes names only

Star Trek: Short Treks (ST)
With Comments (includes possible spoilers & snark) | Episodes names only

Star Trek: Picard (PIC)Up through the first season
With Comments (includes possible spoilers & snark) | Episodes names only

Star Trek: Lower Decks (LD)
(To be added sometime after season one finishes airing)

I hope reading these lists reminds you of some of your favorites, encourages discussion, and maybe prompts you to a check out an episode –or a series– you may have overlooked.

In whatever you do, live long and prosper… unless it’s breeding tribbles. One way or another, that will probably end badly.

Tolkien thought a lot about Middle Earth

I mean, a lot.

I mean, when you consider that the man was a philologist, that’s already a specialty type of academic nerdery.

Now, this may not be surprising to avowed Tolkien fans, but for the rest of us who did not sail through The Silmarillion without failing asleep, this is the video for you!

If, for no other reason, you’re a casual reader who never could get what the deal was with Tom Bombadil, you have an answer (and spoiler: it’s not that he was an escapee from a Disney musical).