Tales from the Cultural Wilderness - Journal

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2005-06-19 Entry: "Insurrection and Wonder Woman"

Monday picks up where Sunday left off - one more Star Trek film to go, and this one appeared to be scratched on arrival. Fortunately it played perfectly okay.

So Star Trek: Insurrection. The best of the Next Gen films - everyone bitches about this being a feature length TV episode, but what's wrong with that? It's got great action sequences, lots of great character moments without too much focus on Picard and Data and lots of intrigue with Star Fleet going off the deep end for a potentially earth-shattering medical breakthrough. It's nice to see that their recent tribulations (Dominion, Borg) has left them a little frazzled!

The only dumb bits in this movie are the Worf moments - why do they keep trying to shoe horn him in to these movies after he went his own way in DS9? Leave him to his DS9 duties... wasn't he going to be Federation ambassador to the Klingon homeworld or something?

Of course, what they needed to do after this one was a DS9 movie with Section 31 and more Federation tearing itself apart. But what do we get? Clones of Picard, Stupid Data, and not-very-sinister Romulans. Oh, and a ship that can fire while cloaked - yawn! But we'll save observations on Nemesis until they release the Collector's Edition...

Meanwhile, we go back to the second half of Wonder Woman, and kick off with "Going, Going, Gone." It opens with a guy on a submarine, with a laser, and a fighter plane seeing a UFO and the pilot bailing out. The plane was carrying a nuclear weapon (as they do) and now Diana needs to find out where it's gone.

"Spaced Out" sees Diana at a science-fiction convention, where some thugs are looking for some missing laser crystals. There's also a master thief to deal with, but he has a habit of borrowing other people's convention costumes, so he's not the easiest person to track down. What's most surprising about this, is that Wonder Woman isn't mobbed by fans the moment she shows up... what sort of conventioneers are these?

Tuesday kicks off with more Wonder Woman, and there's more UFOs in "The Starships Are Coming." These are manufactured by a bunch of lunatics who want to persuade a military commander to nuke China to prevent a major invasion fleet landing... there's some not very convincing aliens for Wonder Woman to deal with, but that's what you get with people in costumes...

"Amazon Hot Wax" has the distinction of Judge Reinhold guest starring in a show about dead musicians and blackmail over last recordings. Of course, Diana has to go under cover as a singer while she investigates the record company. It'd be interesting to find out who's singing the songs she performs...

"The Richest Man In The World" sees a tiny European nation buying some technological macguffin from the titular character. Unfortunately, the rich guy spends his life in hiding and there's only three people in the world who know what he really looks like, so when he's kidnapped and the macguffin goes missing, he's got to rely on a young ne'er-do-well to help him out.

Wednesday continues the Wonder Woman marathon, although these are all short evenings because I've got Haunted to finish (the Kelley Armstrong novel).

"A Date With Doomsday" has Diana visiting a dating agency. They've got a process for copying a person's hands and face with latex so they can impersonate them to commit crimes. It's not the worlds greatest episode, but things pick up from the next one...

"A Girl With A Gift For Disaster" sees a woman who's jinxed get mixed up with a bunch of thieves who claim to be working for the IADC. She seems to defy the odds every time she's nervous - causing traffic accidents, grenades to go off, flipped coins to land on their edge - in other words a perfect distraction for her alleged boyfriend to commit his burglary.

"The Boy Who Knew Her Secret Part 1" sees Diana battling real aliens after a whole bunch of silver pyramids crash to Earth in a small town. The pyramids trap the person who picks it up's life force and replaces it with an alien intelligence. Fortunately for Diana, before she can get taken over, the titular boy comes in and saves her.

"The Boy Who Knew Her Secret Part 2" picks up with the aliens believing they've all been taken over, and Wonder Woman having found out that they're just there to seek out an evil shape changing fugitive and then they'll leave. Unfortunately, the fugitive is masquerading as part of Diana's party, and he drugs her to forget that she's Wonder Woman. Fortunately the boy also knows who she is so can break the hypnotic effect.

"The Man Who Could Not Die" feels like setting up a spin off. Diana has to deal with a strange bunch of characters at the IADC, and they set up a potential lead for the spin-off in the title character. After dealing with an indestructible ape, Diana encounters an athlete who's been given the same treatment - he no longer needs to eat, drink, or sleep, and is completely invulnerable. The scientist who did it to him is holding the antidote hostage in return for a whole bunch of crimes...

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