STDP011: Star Trek Discovery “Into the Forest I Go” Review

The first-half of season one is in the books, and it ended with quite the bang. As Stamets sacrifices his well-being for the success of the mission, Burnham and Tyler infiltrate the sarcophagus ship to complete the second leg of an equally dangerous and complicated plan to crack the Klingon cloak. Stay tuned as we unpack this action-packed ground-breaking episode of Star Trek Discovery. Hosted by Clarence Brown, Kary Brown, Jonathan Shorts, and Kyle Jones.

Bypassing Starfleet’s orders, Lorca uses the USS Discovery crew’s ultimate asset, the ship itself, in an effort to end the war with the Klingons once and for all.

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About STD Podcast

A podcast covering Star Trek Discovery, along with all things Star Trek.

About GRITS

GRITS, or Geeks Recording in the South, is a group of like-minded creators from the Mississippi-area, coming together to create great content. Find out more at gritms.com.

STDP010: Star Trek Discovery “Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum” Review

The cloaking technology of the sarcophagus ship is spreading among the Klingon houses and the Federation is on the hunt to find scanning technology that can detect their presence — but Saru finds so much more. Join us we take a deep dive into “Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum (if you want peace, prepare for war)”. Hosted by Clarence Brown, Kary Brown, Jonathan Shorts, and Kyle Jones.

The U.S.S. Discovery is tasked with a high priority mission to the planet Pahvo and learn the science behind the Klingons’ cloaking technology.

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Stay connected with the STD Podcast. Be sure to follow us on Twitter, find us on Facebook, and visit our website.

Don’t agree with us? Tell us how we’re wrong. Contact us on any of the social media outlets above, or send feedback to fans@stdpodcast.com. We want to hear from you!

About STD Podcast

A podcast covering Star Trek Discovery, along with all things Star Trek.

About GRITS

GRITS, or Geeks Recording in the South, is a group of like-minded creators from the Mississippi-area, coming together to create great content. Find out more at gritms.com.

STDP009: Star Trek Discovery “Magic To Make The Sanest Man Go Mad” Review

Groundhog Day is among us! DISCO is hitting all cylinders as we get a Mudd-filled time-loop episode! Join us as we review Star Trek Discovery “Magic To Make The Sanest Man Go Mad”. Hosted by Clarence Brown, Jonathan Shorts, and Kyle Jones.

As the U.S.S. Discovery crew attempts to let loose at a party, an unwelcome visitor comes aboard bringing about a problematic and twisted sequence of events.

Also, check out Jonathan’s recommendation of the newly opened Star Trek: The Starfleet Academy Experience at Liberty Science Center!

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Stay connected with the STD Podcast. Be sure to follow us on Twitter, find us on Facebook, and visit our website.

Don’t agree with us? Tell us how we’re wrong. Contact us on any of the social media outlets above, or send feedback to fans@stdpodcast.com. We want to hear from you!

About STD Podcast

A podcast covering Star Trek Discovery, along with all things Star Trek.

About GRITS

GRITS, or Geeks Recording in the South, is a group of like-minded creators from the Mississippi-area, coming together to create great content. Find out more at gritms.com.

STDP008: Star Trek Discovery “Lethe” Review

In episode six of Star Trek Discovery, Sarek runs into a bit of trouble — what is it about these darn shuttles! As Sarek tries to foster an end to the war with the Klingons, Vulcan logic extremist have plans of their own. Join us as we review, “Lethe”. Hosted by Clarence Brown, Kary Brown, and Jonathan Shorts.

The USS Discovery crew is intrigued by new addition, Lt. Ash Tyler. Sarek seeks Burnham’s help, rekindling memories from her past. Admiral Cornwell questions Lorca’s tactics.

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Stay connected with the STD Podcast. Be sure to follow us on Twitter, find us on Facebook, and visit our website.

Don’t agree with us? Tell us how we’re wrong. Contact us on any of the social media outlets above, or send feedback to fans@stdpodcast.com. We want to hear from you!

About STD Podcast

A podcast covering Star Trek Discovery, along with all things Star Trek.

About GRITS

GRITS, or Geeks Recording in the South, is a group of like-minded creators from the Mississippi-area, coming together to create great content. Find out more at gritms.com.

STDP007: Star Trek Discovery “Choose Your Pain” Review

In episode five of Star Trek Discovery, an impact is made on the history of the franchise. Whether it’s dropping f-bombs or romantic endeavors, one thing is clear — it’s not your daddy’s Star Trek. Buckle in for a captain’s capture, a tardigrade’s plea, a rash decision, and a daring escape! Join us as we review, “Choose Your Pain”. Hosted by Clarence Brown, Andy Sims, Kyle Jones, and Jonathan Shorts.

While on a mission, Lorca is captured by the Klingons and unexpectedly finds himself in the company of prisoner of war Starfleet Lieutenant Ash Tyler and notorious criminal Harry Mudd.

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Stay connected with the STD Podcast. Be sure to follow us on Twitter, find us on Facebook, and visit our website.

Don’t agree with us? Tell us how we’re wrong. Contact us on any of the social media outlets above, or send feedback to fans@stdpodcast.com. We want to hear from you!

About STD Podcast

A podcast covering Star Trek Discovery, along with all things Star Trek.

About GRITS

GRITS, or Geeks Recording in the South, is a group of like-minded creators from the Mississippi-area, coming together to create great content. Find out more at gritms.com.

Star Trek Beyond: Sorta Kinda Beyond-ish

This article originally appeared on the Discussing Who website on August 11, 2016.

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Star Trek Beyond is the third installment in JJ Abrams’ Kelvin timeline of the Star Trek franchise. This would be the first movie of the diverged universe in which Abrams would not direct the project, passing duties on the Justin Lin of Fast and the Furious fame, with Abrams producing. While this was disappointing at first glance, the hope was that Lin would inject the franchise with new life, and not fall into the ho-hum cadence that so many franchises sink into after a few films.

With a new director on board, I fully expected this iteration to give a fresh coat of paint to a universe that felt a bit too derivative after the second film.

Am I the only one who laughed out loud during Into Darkness when Spock, played by Zachary Quinto, yelled out KHAN?

Issues aside, I still feel Into Darkness was a very good film, banking on all the things that made the first great, and giving us a bit of nostalgia. Albeit maybe too much.

Enter Star Trek Beyond. James T. Kirk, played by Chris Pine, is attempting find himself after reaching the halfway point of a laborious five year mission. A mission that is seemingly wearing him down, predicated by misgivings of trying to capture a dream that was not his, but that of his father.

We are told this mission has taken the crew into the far reaches of space, which may contribute to some the of captains issues, giving him the feeling that the life a of star ship captain may not be the one for him. Though nothing to me about the movie really feels beyond. Though after seeing a series like Star Trek: Voyager, some of those sensibilities may have been lost on me. The Voyager crew was really beyond, being stranded in the delta quadrant. In part, the distant nature of the mission was lost due to the space base, which made it feel a bit too much like home.

We also find out that Kirk is not the only one that is looking to leave. Upon finding out that his alternate universe self has died, Spock feels a similar calling as he is drawn to New Vulcan to do good for his people.

On what may be their last mission together, the Enterprise is ripped asunder, as a new life-sucking enemy and his swarm of ships lay waste to ship and crew in search of a powerful relic.

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After the aforementioned destruction of the Enterprise, the team is split up. We have pairing of Kirk and Chekhov (Anton Yelchin), Spock and McCoy (Karl Urban), Scotty (Simon Pegg) and Jaylah (Sofia Boutella), then Uhura (Zoe Saldana) and Sulu (John Cho). I don’t know why, but the buddy system worked for me.

This unique pairings allowed for a different dynamic and feel than we have gotten in any of the other Kelvin-movies. Giving each a bit more of a chance to shine than it would in the moments when they are all together and Kirk is the man. Most notably the Spock and McCoy moments seemed to lend themselves to a deeper humanization of Spock, and gave McCoy a bigger feel of importance.

Also the Scotty and Jaylah pairing allowed for a bit of fun, as both were extremely smart, being the care-free and fun characters of the group. Though it was a bit surprising to see Jaylah in such an upbeat mood, having been stranded a planet for several years by the swarm.

While the idea of a swarm–a vast array of small ships that operate in a orchestrated pattern by a controlled harmonic frequency–of ships is not particularly unique to the Star Trek franchise, it does provide an admirable foe that feels almost impossible in nature. It was a beautifully-dark twisted fantasy to see these ships tear-apart the Enterprise, while being heart-wrenching at the same time as you think of the lost of its crew. Which brings me to the visuals.

This is a visually stunning movie, in particular, when the Enterprise meets its destruction. During its demise we see the swarm shred the Enterprise to pieces. And we see this up close and personal. Ships punching through it. Visible holes throughout. Rotating exposed corridors. It was just magnificent.

Not the be outdone, are the visuals given by star-base Yorktown. The Yorktown is gorgeous. More akin to something you would see in a Japanese anime than anything we have seen in the Star Trek universe. The glass domed enclosure was open and vibrant, and felt more like a mini planet in-cased in a snow globe than any space station of times past. Its well thought out ship entry and gravitational design, play a key role in the movie.

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Again, I really enjoyed this movie, but it certainly has a few issues. One that jumps out at me is the way in which the swarm was destroyed.

I won’t dive deep into the details, but never should the resolution to defeating an enemy be Michael Diamond, Adam Horovitz, and Adam Yauch. Just never.

Then there is the issue with Krall, played by Idras Elba. While I had no issue with him in particular, he is an excellent actor, it sure feels like he is pretty much wasted in the film. The chain of events that leads Krall to want to destroy the federation is not anything particularly new or even interesting. I guess one could say the Krall went mad because of the very thing that kept him alive, but even that feels like a bit of a stretch and is not articulated well on screen. Ultimately he felt like your run-of-the-mil villain, nothing more or less.

And what about the title of the movie itself. Beyond. To be quite honest, other than Kirk’s murmuring about the taxing effect of being out in space for so long, nothing that happened really felt beyond. And I think in large part that is due to the immaculate space station being their place for shore leave. While I love the design and feel, it felt a bit too elaborate to be something out in the far reaches of space.

Also is the issue with the misgiving that Kirk and Spock had at the beginning of the film about wanting to leave and do other things. While the setup for that scenario to play out felt great, I really feel like we never get a resolution as to why either may change their mind by the end of the film. Yeah, I stopped the bad guy. Yeah, I really care about everyone on this crew. And? What was so different about now? Maybe I missed something, but I do not see how one great adventure would instantly change everything in this regard.

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I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the meaning of seeing Anton Yelchin on his final adventure on the Enterprise. While he was the ultra-smart character he has always been, it was still sad to see him in his final appearance. And while the pairing of he and Kirk didn’t feel like anything particularly special, it was fun to see them both working closely together as they rummaged a crashed Enterprise for a means of getting off the planet.

Also there is a particularly good moment near the end of the film as new Spock looks through old Spock’s belonging. It will bring a smile to your face.

In closing, there are plenty of Easter eggs and the cast continues to channel that familiar feel, while evolving the characters into their own. Lin provides a slight divergence from the norm character dynamics and displays a visual masterpiece, all while sticking to the core values of what the fandom wants from their beloved franchise. If you are a Star Trek fan, young or old, this movie is worth watching.

STDP006: Star Trek Discovery “The Butcher’s Knife Cares Not for the Lamb’s Cry” Review

Lorca wants a weapon, but he gets something much better — a working spore drive. Burnham sciences the crap out of this one. Join us as we review the latest episode of Star Trek Discovery, “The Butcher’s Knife Cares Not for the Lamb’s Cry”. No humans were eaten in the making of this podcast. Hosted by Clarence Brown, Kyle Jones, Kary Brown, and Jonathan Shorts.

Lorca assigns Burnham to study the creature from the Glenn to find a way to use its biology as a weapon and Starfleet orders Discovery to relieve the dilithium mining colony of Corvan II, which has come under Klingon attack.

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Stay connected with the STD Podcast. Be sure to follow us on Twitter, find us on Facebook, and visit our website.

Don’t agree with us? Tell us how we’re wrong. Contact us on any of the social media outlets above, or send feedback to fans@stdpodcast.com. We want to hear from you!

About STD Podcast

A podcast covering Star Trek Discovery, along with all things Star Trek.

About GRITS

GRITS, or Geeks Recording in the South, is a group of like-minded creators from the Mississippi-area, coming together to create great content. Find out more at gritms.com.

STDP005: Star Trek Discovery “Context Is For Kings” Review

Mutiny, roommates, old-friends, black alerts, spores, and a scary captain — sound like Star Trek to you? We are here to unpack it all, as the show attempts to set the table for what continues to feel like a fresh take on Star Trek. Universal law is for lackeys, context is for kings! Hosted by Clarence Brown, Kyle Jones, and Jonathan Shorts.

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Stay connected with the STD Podcast. Be sure to follow us on Twitter, find us on Facebook, and visit our website.

Don’t agree with us? Tell us how we’re wrong. Contact us on any of the social media outlets above, or send feedback to fans@stdpodcast.com. We want to hear from you!

About STD Podcast

A podcast covering Star Trek Discovery, along with all things Star Trek.

About GRITS

GRITS, or Geeks Recording in the South, is a group of like-minded creators from the Mississippi-area, coming together to create great content. Find out more at gritms.com.

STDP004: Star Trek Discovery “The Vulcan Hello” and “Battle at the Binary Stars” Review

Discovery has finally aired and we have a lot to unpack! We briefly talk about additional thoughts on CBS All-Access before diving head-first into our review of “The Vulcan Hello” and “Battle at the Binary Stars”. We finish up the show with a follow up poll on Star Trek theme songs and listener feedback. Hosted by Clarence Brown, Andy Sims, Kary Brown, Kyle Jones, and Jonathan Shorts.

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Stay connected with the STD Podcast. Be sure to follow us on Twitter, find us on Facebook, and visit our website.

Don’t agree with us? Tell us how we’re wrong. Contact us on any of the social media outlets above, or send feedback to fans@stdpodcast.com. We want to hear from you!

With so much to cover, trivia will be on a hiatus this week. We hope to have some fresh trivia on our next episode!

About STD Podcast

A podcast covering Star Trek Discovery, along with all things Star Trek.

About GRITS

GRITS, or Geeks Recording in the South, is a group of like-minded creators from the Mississippi-area, coming together to create great content. Find out more at gritms.com.

STD Plays: Stage 9 V007 | USS Enterprise NCC 1701-D

Back for some more Star Trek Voyager: Elite Force? Well, um, we have something a bit different today — but I’m sure you will enjoy it just as well! Enter Stage 9!

Join me as I take a tour about the USS Enterprise NCC 1701-D inside the Stage 9 V007 release. Though still in its early stages (no pun intended), Stage 9 — which gets its name for obvious reasons — is shaping up to a very good simulation of what the Enterprise may have looked like in real life.

What is Stage 9? This aim of the Stage 9 project is to recreate the sets used in Star Trek The Next Generation in Unreal Engine 4 with a focus on attention to detail. The eventual goal is to allow you to explore every part of the ship that you’ve seen on the show and interact with it. Imagine walking to Worfs’ tactical station on the Bridge, pressing buttons on his control panel and firing torpedoes or sitting in Datas’ chair at the helm console and taking the ship into warp. Immersion and interactivity are the key here!

Check out STD Plays: Star Trek Voyager Elite Force, Part I and Star Trek Voyager Elite Force, Part II as well.