Thursday, May 20, 2010

Star Trek - The Children of Kings by David Stern

Spoiler Level: Medium

The nice thing about the new Trek movie is that since Captain Pike was featured so prominently, it inspired Pocket Books to publish a new Pike book.

I like Pike books. I'll confess I still haven't gotten around to reading the Pike book in the Captain's Table series, but I liked Vulcan's Glory, thoroughly enjoyed The Rift, and absolutely loved Burning Dreams.

This is a good one as well. In a lot of ways it's also more of a Dr. Boyce book than a Pike book, which gives us a nice in-depth view of the early Enterprise crew. The relationship between Number One and Spock is great; one of the things I like about the Pike era is that Spock isn't first officer, he's the up-and-coming whiz kid. I like the different dynamic that brings to the Enterprise.

The story also deals heavily with the Orions, including shedding some light on how a race that both treats its women as slaves yet at the same time is a slave to their women. It was a neat twist when they revealed it and the end of the Orion episodes in Star Trek: Enterprise, and it was certainly more 21st Century PC, but it left me going "Wait a minute, how does that work...?" This book proposes that it's something of a constant power struggle between the two genders, and it's an interesting one to watch.

This is also the last new Trek book on the schedule until November, so I'll be taking the opportunity over the next several months to catch up on some older Trek books. Next month will be last month's Star Trek: Online - The Needs of the Many, and the next four months after that I plan on reading Keith R. A. DeCandido's IKS Gorkon series. I took a look at my bookshelf and discovered that if they stopped publishing Trek books completely, I could still read a new Trek book off of my shelf every month for two years! So while some people are cranky about the break, I welcome it.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

V - "Red Sky"

Spoiler Warning: High

"Let V no longer stand for Visitor. Let it now stand for Victory." Father Jack is taking it back! God bless Father Jack!

Didn't they say something in the preview for this episode like "their plan will finally be revealed?" Well, so much for that. Not only are we no closer to knowing what their plan is, now we have to wait to find out what they did to turn the skies red. Thank heavens this show was renewed, or that would have been a really sucky way to end it. But that just shows that they've made me care.

Whatever the new red dust was, I hope this is a major turning point in the story and it doesn't go back to status quo by the end of the first episode next season. Marcus was acting like this was a major turning point, so I sincerely hope it doesn't clear up right away.

Along those lines, Morenna Baccarin really deserves some major kudos for Anna's grieving scene. It gave me chills.

I'm glad Val was only gone for two episodes and that she was back for this one. I would have liked for her and Ryan to have a chance to make it work, but Anna's actions made total sense for the situation. I'm a little disappointed that we didn't even get a glimpse at the baby, but I liked the sound of its voice! Here's hoping that the baby will give Ryan what he needs to resist Anna's Bliss.

Speaking of which, they've shaken things up so that I don't really know whose side Kyle and Chad are on, which is great. How strong is Anna's hold on Chad's brain? Can he see what he saw and yet find some way to rationalize it? Either way, I think it could be done really well. Chad is at his most interesting when he's trying to understand both sides and questioning the status quo. Yet at the same time, people who could look at the Visitors' atrocities and turn a blind eye because it either wasn't happening to them or because they were somehow being rewarded is what made the original V so thought-provoking.

Even though it's been slow, this version of V is really starting to live up to its legacy. They've earned the V back. I'm now looking forward to next season, and hope this is the first V to go up in quality when it comes back. ;)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Smallville - "Salvation"

Spoiler Level: High

Okay, overall I'm pleased. I don't normally rate stuff in this style, but I'd give it about a 7 out of 10. So not as good as I was hoping for, but pretty darn good.

As soon as it was revealed last episode that the Book of Rao would transport the Kandorians away, I knew we had our solution for the season finale and that we weren't going to get our all-out war.

The fight scene between Clark and Zod was at least more satisfying than last year's fight against Doomsday. Sure, it would have been nice to have them doing major-league damage like the battle in Superman II, but Smallville just doesn't have that kind of budget. So at least we actually got a good final throw-down between the two, even if it was on a smaller scale. It was nice of the Rao-Beam to wait until Clark and Zod finished their fight, wasn't it? And just where the heck does Zod keep getting these Kryptonite knives, anyway?!?

Wait a minute, wait a minute... this just occurred to me as I was typing: Wasn't the first thing Zod did when he got his powers was find out where Chloe's caches of Kryptonite weapons were and start destroying them all? He must have picked the knives up then. And speaking of Kryptonite weapons...

LOVED Tess's Kryptonite Brass Knuckles. The writers certainly left her deep in the swimming pool, didn't they? To be honest, I'll be okay if she doesn't come back next year. She was an okay character, especially at the start, but I feel like they didn't quite know what they wanted her to be by the end of this season.

LOVED seeing Hawkman, Stargirl, Cyborg and Black Canary again. So awesome.

LOVED LOVED Lois figuring out from his touch that Zod was not The Blur, and from his kiss that Clark was.

LOVED LOVED LOVED the opening sequence of 2013 with all the characters in their proper place in the Superman mythos. If this show runs another three seasons, then I'm holding you guys to that!

And lastly... the opening scene with the proper S, implying that Martha has made Clark his proper Superman outfit. I'd like to think that this means they're open to taking the plunge next year (after all, it will be SEASON FREAKIN' TEN), but Smallville being Smallville I'm not going to get my hopes up.

It would be nice if they planned on next year being their final season, so they just went all out and gave us the final chapter of Clark's childhood and had him become Superman early on. I mean really, they've done their job over the last nine seasons of introducing every element and getting everything in place; if they don't take the last step soon, it's going to feel like they're stalling. And if they have the attitude of "If he becomes Superman, we don't have a show," then that's okay, because the show will have run for ten years. And if the ratings are still good, then they can either keep going or reboot the show as Metropolis.

Wait and see. Right now they've got to work out how Clark is going to survive a fall from the top of a skyscraper without his powers. I have my theories. And I'll be back in the fall for Season 10 to find out, without my usual reservations, because Season 9 was Smallville's best season yet.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Ultraman Tiga (4Kids English Dub)

Spoiler Level: Low

The last thing I have on my "Japanese Monster Movies" VHS tapes is 11 episodes of Ultraman Tiga. This series was made in 1996 and then run on Fox on Saturday mornings in 2002. While copying them, I've watched about 4 or 5 episodes that I didn't see when I was first recording them.

It's the usual Ultraman story-- a human hero from a high-tech organization gets bonded to Ultraman, who he calls in to fight the monsters. (Don't let the picture confuse you, there's only one Ultraman in this story-- he just has three modes. Blue/purple is advanced speed, red is advanced strength, and purple & red is a combination of the two.)

This dub is a strange breed. It tries to provide a serious action story while at the same time getting silly with dialogue. (For example, "Don't get yourself so upset. You're making your face break out in pimples." "Can we pop them?!?") But it's not flat-out slapstick like Dynaman; when the action scenes start, it's down to business. It's not consistent; some episodes the dialogue is just ridiculous for all the exposition scenes, and other episodes had very little silly dialogue at all. So you really just need to go into it with the attitude that this is a dub that's not going to take itself too seriously.

The show itself has a good story. There's a lot of model shots, which I liked, but a lot of 90's computer effects for flying shots, which I don't like. The monster designs are fantastic, and Ultraman's attacks are a great combination of new and classic. So all in all it's a fun serious that gives me a few bonus laughs, and was worth saving before I get rid of the VHS tapes. There's also a faithfully translated subtitled version that's been released on DVD in the US. I may check it out someday, but for now I'm content with having seen these episodes.

Doctor Who - The Time of Angels, Part Two: "Flesh and Stone"

Spoiler Level: High

A strong conclusion to a strong story. I'm very pleased that The Crack In Time And Space actually had a major impact on the main story, and that we got to learn more about it before the final story of the season, as it has been in previous years.

Ah, and River continues to intrigue. With every question answered, there's a question more. Okay, so she's been imprisoned for killing "the best man [she's] ever known." Well, to hear her talk, that would most likely be the Doctor. And with the Pandorica reference, we know we'll probably see her again at the end of the season. Makes me worry for Matt Smith's tenure as the Doctor, contracts or not!

And the more the season goes on, the more I wonder about Amy. I'm hitting the point where I'm not even positive she's a real human being, and not some kind of alien manifestation that thinks it's human but is really a trap for the Doctor. I know that's totally out of left field, but part of the reason for my thinking that is the final scene where she tries to bed the Doctor. What hit me about it is that she's trying to get the Doctor to indulge in immoral behavior (that fact that she's engaged, not the fact that the Doctor would be having sex, that's a whole different topic) on the night before her wedding, which is apparently scheduled on the same day as the event that causes The Crack In Time And Space to be created. Just makes me wonder.

Friday, May 14, 2010

V - "Fruition"

Spoiler Level: Medium

Okay, if they play their cards right next episode (and next season), then I'm going to take back all the complaints I made in my first review of the new show. This episode showed perfectly how the fear of terrorism can lead to the losing of freedoms. And just as the erosion happens slowly in real life, it's also happening in stages on ABC's V. First the FBI makes it a priority to stop Fifth Column, and now the American government has agreed to hand over all suspects to the Visitors before they go to trial. Anna knows how to play humanity's fears like a piano.

While I still hold to my opinion that the show is taking an entire season just to set up the premise, I've got to completely concede Amy's point that by doing it this way, it gets its point across to today's audience who have today's fears. I accused the show of becoming the very propaganda it originally warned against, but by showing how the public can be swayed by leaders with their own agenda using the threat of terrorism, it's pointing out the man behind the curtain to the post-9/11 generation. It's a message that's long overdue, and it's a message that's worthy of V.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Iron Man 2

Spoiler Level: High

Oh MAN, that was sweet. (But then again, when hasn't a comic book movie been sweet lately? Unlike the "fan" base, I enjoyed Wolverine, Spider-Man 3, X-Men: The Last Stand, Daredevil, both Hulk movies, and both Fantastic Four movies. I'll confess I did find parts of Superman Returns disturbing, but overall I really enjoyed it. I don't think I've been truly disappointed by a comic book movie since Batman and Robin. Of course I haven't seen Catwoman or Elektra yet, so those might live up to their bad reputations. But I digress. Where was I? Oh yeah, Iron Man 2.)

I'm an unapologetic mecha-head. And this movie's got awesome mecha all through it. In addition to Iron Man, War Machine (who is really fun to watch making stuff go BA-FOOM in action scenes) and Whiplash, we get four whole squads of combat drones. Repulsor blasts, rockets, missiles, cannons, and lots of other cool stuff that blows up. Now normally I don't care for movies that just go BOOM, but I'm discovering I like movies with things that go SWOOOOSH-BOOM.

But this movie's got much more than just BOOM. It's got great banter between Tony Stark and Pepper. It's got great banter between Tony Stark and freakin' Nick Fury as played by Samuel L. Jackson! It's got Tony Stark starting to become an alcoholic. It's got Black Widow. It's got Avengers references galore. It's got accurate patches for S.H.E.I.L.D.! It's got freakin' Mjolnir!!!!! It's got Iron Man and War Machine smackin' down with each other, not once but twice, and then teaming up to take out the bad guys back to back!! Whoops, sorry, I slid back into SWOOSH-BOOM territory.

But my point is, if you look back over that list I mention Tony Stark a lot, and that's because the characters in general and Robert Downey Jr.'s performance in particular are what really carry the movie. Actually, I'd have to say Robert Downey Jr as Tony Stark, Sam Rockwell as Justin Hammer, and Mickey Rourke as Ivan Vanko all make this movie fun to watch. Rockwell's Hammer and Rourke's Vanko compliment each other perfectly, the former as the showboating Evil Businessman and the second as the Quiet Bad-ass.

And just for icing on the cake, I really love that Tony Stark's computer interface is the big holographic screens that go swooshy-swoosh all over the place as he moves his hands and arms around. That's just fun to watch. Makes you want to jump in and play with it.

So, Iron Man 2 has good acting, fun characters, great eye-candy effects, lots of comic book fan-wank, and lots of great SWOOSH-BOOM. The Era of Great Comic Book Movies continues!

King Kong Escapes

Spoiler Level: Medium

I'm up to "Japanese Monster Movies" (aka "The Kaiju Collection") in my quest to copy all my VHS tapes to DVD. Last night I finished tape #22 in the set, and oddly enough this is the first time I've gotten to actually watch one of them in its entirety while I'm transferring them.

What I found fascinating about King Kong Escapes was that it was a co-production between Toho and Rankin/Bass. Yes, Rankin/Bass, the people who made the Rudolph specials. So the cast is a mix of Japanese and American actors. The Japanese characters appear to have been speaking in Japanese and dubbed into English, and the American actors are all speaking English, and from what I can gather online were dubbed into Japanese for the Japanese release! Pretty interesting.

The villain is also named Dr. Who, which I got a kick out of. I had assumed his name was Dr. Hu and that I was just being uber-geeky, and was surprised to learn in the credits that his name actually was Dr. Who!

The movie itself is pretty much what you'd expect for a 70's kaiju film, which is a fun romp with monsters being shot at by toy tanks. I would have liked it if Kong and Robot Kong (come on! He should be MechaKong) had gone at it earlier in the movie, but the final battle with them climbing Tokyo Tower is awesome.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

V - "Hearts and Minds"

Spoiler Level: High

Eh. Mixed feelings on this episode.

On the plus side, it was cool to see some action in this episode with the attack on the Visitor shuttle.

On the negative side, that's an awful lot of hand-wringing over something that was a typical shot from the classic V.

I get where they were coming from. Since shuttles aren't normally shooting people down in this version, and are frequently filled with humans, it's a bigger deal.

And in the bigger picture, they're trying to say that by resisting the Visitors, the Fifth Column truly are terrorists. Isn't there an old saying about one person's terrorist is another person's freedom fighter? And since this show is completely unwilling to have the Visitors be fascists, then no one is going to realize that the Fifth Column even are freedom fighters.

On the other hand, by them becoming terrorists in the eyes of the world, the Visitors now have the world law enforcement agencies completely on their side, which is the perfect start of them becoming tyrants.

On the other hand, this is episode 10 out of 12. Taking an entire season to set up the Visitors as tyrants is really dragging it out. And they still haven't revealed the Visitors' true purpose. If after 12 episodes it's exactly the same as what was revealed in the original mini-series by the third hour, I'm going to be a bit disappointed.

I also can't stand scenes like the one where it's the four of them in the basement saying "we're the only ones who will stand up to them." A resistance movement of four. Well, that was certainly like the classic V... sadly though it was like the scene in V: The Series after the cast was cut, and Mike said to Kyle and Willie "Remember, if Juliet and I don't come back.... you two are the Resistance now."

Wow, I'm being bitchy. It's probably my mood.

So okay, things I do like. I like that Jack is wrestling with his morality. I like how Chad seems to think he's still in control of himself without realizing that Anna has totally Converted him. I like how Erica is finding herself in charge of hunting herself down. And I do like that the Visitors are playing on our fears to get themselves in deep.

And I like that we finally got some good space ship action.

Oh, and on a completely different note, I'm done with ABC's boring cast photos and found a program that will let me do my own screen captures for the next 30 days. Anyone recommend any free or inexpensive screen capture programs?

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Smallville - "Hostage"

Spoiler Level: Really High

Well, speak of the devil! I'm guessing the nice folks at Smallville read my post two weeks ago asking about Perry White and decide to bring him back just to answer my question. How nice of them!

Seriously though, I do think the timing is great, and I hope this is leading to him becoming a regular cast member at the Daily Planet.

It was also nice to have Martha Kent back. I've always felt that she should have had a few more references here and there; having her go to Washington worked fine, but of course she would have stayed in touch, and we rarely (if ever) really saw that. Her acknowledging that she didn't want to come back because of all the memories of Jonathan works for me.

I figured out the big reveal that Martha was the Red Queen when Clark got zapped by Kryptonite. They had already stated that Tess was the Red Queen, yet they still didn't show her face for that scene. The only reason they would do that is if Tess wasn't the Red Queen, and that only left Chloe or Martha as suspects. Oh, I suppose it could have wound up being a Kandorian or Black Canary or someone, but Martha fit. And sadly it fits with the way she became so secretive when she got involved with Lionel Luthor.

And now we have the season finale preview, promising the war with Zod, Clark revealing himself to Lois, and the Superman symbol in actual red-and-yellow. I'm still not getting my hopes up. This has been possibly the best season yet, but I still don't trust them to not go back to status quo.

Monday, May 10, 2010

V - "Heretic's Fork"

Spoiler Level: High

Yayy! A Visitor Soldier! Okay, so he's a ninja and not a shock trooper, but I'm still happy.

"Name one bad thing they've done since they got here! You can't, can you?" Okay, well I can see how Erica couldn't answer Tyler without being, oh, honest with him, but she could have told the assassin guy "Well, I saw them slaughter a whole room full of people who just showed up to hear a guy's conspiracy theory about them." Or, "Well, my partner turned out to be a Visitor, and when I found out he tried to kill me." And that's just off the top of my head.

I loved all of the stuff between Ryan and Val, and I can see how she can't stay with him after discovering that he was lying to her about being a human being and didn't come clean when he accidentally impregnated her with a lizard baby. But I hope this doesn't mean she's out of the show. Her plotline is just too important to have her just ride away on a train.

And I like that Chad and Lisa's loyalties are being put to the test. I wonder if they converted Chad when they "fixed" his aneurysm?

Doctor Who - "The Time of Angels" (Part One)

Spoiler Level: I'd say somewhere in the range between ther higher side of medium and the lower side of high.

I was debating not reviewing this episode until I saw the second half of the story, but there's so much to love in this episode I figured what the heck. River Song, for starters; I love the whole idea of seeing a future companion (hey, she got to travel in the TARDIS in this story, so she's an official companion in my book now) and that we're getting to see her story from the Doctor's perspective and not from River's. The 11th Doctor's reaction to her, which is much more humorous than the 10th Doctor's. The interplay between Amy and River; it's always fun to see companions from different time periods banter.

I also feel like the romantic relationship between the Doctor and River works better for me than his relationship with Rose. Now I'm not hating on Rose at all, and in hindsight I'm quite okay with him having fallen in love with Rose and their love being the light that put him back on track after the Time War; but at the time I just felt she was starting to steal the show from the Doctor. By contrast, we meet River and immediately learn she's going to be special to the Doctor, and now we have the intrigue of wanting to find out how and why. Plus, by being a semi-recurring companion, she doesn't overpower the show. So I'm really looking forward to seeing her story unfold. I hope she ends up becoming his wife out of a sincere love on the Doctor's part, and not out of some cheat as in "The Doctor's Daughter" or plot device as in "The Aztecs." (Do you realize we know of the Doctor having gotten married three times now?)

I also felt the Weeping Angels were very well handled. I have to admit, although I feel "Blink" is the best Doctor-lite episode made yet, I didn't really think there was much more that could be done with the Weeping Angels, let alone as a two-parter. But this story has been great at expanding their mythology, as Rich put it after we watched it. They did a good job creeping out Mylene as well, although I think the monsters to creep her out the most this season has been the Smilers.

Looking forward to Part Two. I'd like to learn more about the hints they dropped about River, but I'm betting they won't be answered until later seasons.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Star Wars: The Clone Wars - "Lethal Trackdown"

Spoiler Level: Medium

So... who's this squeamish kid they replaced Boba Fett with?

I can handle that they're trying to say that Mandalorians and Jango Fett had a sense of honor. I can handle the concept of Boba Fett being an honorable rogue and as such a story's hero, like he was handled in the Legacy of the Force books. But this just felt like a mess. This felt like they wanted to start setting Boba Fett up to be used as a hero later, but they couldn't go all out because he has to still be a bad guy in Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. The result just didn't work for me. And if you can't let Boba Fett go all out because he's a kid, then it's better to not use him at all.

On the plus side, the various cantinas and Hives of Scum and Villainy were very, very cool.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Smallville - "Sacrifice"

Spoiler Level: High

Gotta admit, I found this episode pretty disturbing. Zod's murder of his lover and (even if he didn't realize it at the time) unborn child is of course the worst of it. The fact that he'd then twist that to incite his own people to war against humanity is pretty messed up and shows how he's completely become as evil as the original General Zod.

So does this mean that Ollie's going to have a big scar on his chest in the shape of a Kryptonian "Z" from now on?

Back to the Chloe of Questionable Morality. I have to admit, I thought the idea that Chloe and Tess would now trust each other after what they went through together a bit hard to swallow, but I at least expected it to last until the end of the scene. Here's hoping that Ollie's willing to shell out some more money to fix up Watchtower.

So, we have two episodes left. Are we really going to get an all-out war? After Doomsday, I'm skeptical. I figure all the budget for the season was probably spent on the JLA episode, but that's okay, that episode would totally make it worth it. But I'll say one thing-- Clark better get over his not wanting to fly if he's going up against an entire group of super-powered Kryptonians. Let me rephrase that, the producers better get over not wanting Clark to fly if he's going up against an entire group of super-powered Kryptonians.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars - "R2 Come Home"

Spoiler Level: Low

This is what's cool about having a Star Wars TV show: you get Artoo-centric episodes. This is exactly the kind of story I used to do with my action figures when I was 10, right down to making Artoo fly (and he wasn't even able to back then). I absolutely love it.

Gripes: Bossk speaking Basic. And after last episode showed what a great shot Boba Fett was at hitting multiple targets, his not being able to take out two stationary hyperdrive rings felt a little contradictory. But those are both easily forgivable with such a fun episode.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Doctor Who - "Victory of the Daleks"

Spoiler Level: High

This episode has gotten a lot of negative buzz around the net, but I really liked it. I didn't think it was perfect; I thought it felt rushed, and I don't like the new Dalek design as much as the previous design. But other than that, I thought it was fantastic.

First and foremost: I loved that the Daleks are really, truly BACK. The "I have the chance to destroy the Daleks once and for all!" approach has really gotten stale. We know they're coming back. We want them to come back. Is it fair that the Daleks have managed to restore themselves after the Time War and the Time Lords haven't? Probably not, but there are only so many ways you can have one small group of Daleks survive the latest "final destruction of the Daleks," so I really feel it's better this way. Let them establish a New Skaro and build their empire again.

And this was a great way to come back. When Bracewell was talking how all these ideas would just come to him, I was starting to think that somehow the Daleks were influencing his mind from wherever they were currently trapped and he really was building a new breed of Dalek, just like the Cybermen in "Rise of the Cybermen." So the twist that it was the other way around was a real surprise to me.

And I love the look of Bracewell's Daleks. I love the pockets, the camo paint and the Union Jack under the eye stalk! The canteens on their backs reminded me of the discs on the Daleks' backs in "The Dalek Invasion of Earth."

As to the new Daleks: I LOVE that multi-colored Daleks are back. I can't wait for there to be armies of each color. I like the idea that each color has its own job. The things I don't like about the new design is the big blocky ring around the "arms" and the swooped vents under the dome. But hey, when I look at it I still say "Yep, that's a Dalek." And besides, in the old days the Dalek design was tweaked a little bit with practically every new appearance, so the parts I don't like may get tweaked away in the future.

And I loved that the new Daleks immediately hated the other surviving Daleks for being unpure. The swift destruction (and the old Daleks willingness to be destroyed) felt like a true passing of the baton (or maybe passing of the plunger), signifying a new era has begun for the Daleks.

Once again, Amy rushes in and provides what the Doctor has been missing to save the day. The Doctor tries to grip on to the feelings of pain and loss to bring forward Bracewell's humanity, but Amy gets him to grip on to feelings of love. And so love stops the oblivion bomb. A little cheesy, but still nice.

Oh, and I didn't notice a prominent use of "zero" in this one, so either I missed it or I was totally off-base on that one.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Star Wars: The Clone Wars - "Death Trap"

Spoiler Level: High

Things I really liked about this episode:

* Boba Fett is already becoming a bad-ass. Seeing his father killed has already made him toughen up and become the Boba Fett we know and love.

* Those beautiful opening shots of the frigate docking with the Jedi cruiser. A great throwback to the original Star Wars opening, and so beautifully rendered.

* Boba Fett not being able to kill a Clone Trooper when staring him in the face, since they all have the face of his father.

* Aurra Sing and Bossk!

* Boba Fett using the fact that he's also a clone to infiltrate the Clone Troopers and get his revenge on Mace Windu.

Things I didn't like:

* Clone Trooper cadets? Huh? That seems a pretty inefficient way to produce more Clone Troopers. Weren't they all programmed in the cloning chambers and born as adults? Boba Fett was supposed to be the exception. So while I like the concept of his using it to his advantage, I don't like that they had to create this conceit to make it work.

* Mace Windu's quarters get attacked and the two troopers who pointed out to a kid where he could find Mace Windu's quarters just a short while earlier don't step up to say something? Even if one of them was the trooper who died, the other one should have made the connection.

* It's a lucky thing for Boba Fett that escape pods have a "make everything go wrong" button, and that he happened to get the seat right in front of it.

...So the things that I thought didn't work about the episode really didn't work for me, but everything else was good.

From what I can gather from, it seems like they aired all three episodes of the season finale already. They've still only posted one of them online though, so I'll have to wait to a little longer to see the other two.