Tag Archive | david bowie

“Stardust City Rag” Begins Quite Bloody and Ends With a Bang, or Picard Goes On a Caper

"Stardust City Rag" -- Episode #105 -- Pictured (l-r): Sir Patrick Stewart as Jean-Luc Picard; Jeri Ryan as Seven of Nine; Evan Evagora as Elnor; of the the CBS All Access series STAR TREK: PICARD. Photo Cr: Trae Patton/CBS ©2019 CBS Interactive, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

“Stardust City Rag” — Episode #105 — Pictured (l-r): Sir Patrick Stewart as Jean-Luc Picard; Jeri Ryan as Seven of Nine; Evan Evagora as Elnor; of the the CBS All Access series STAR TREK: PICARD. Photo Cr: Trae Patton/CBS ©2019 CBS Interactive, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

My episode-by-episode reviews of Star Trek: Picard continues with the fifth episode, in which Jean-Luc’s motley crew try a bit of undercover shenanigans. This was another very enjoyable episode. As if trying to counter the criticisms that the first four episodes went too slowly (which I know isn’t actually the case, because the whole series was completed before the first episode aired, but…), this episode’s weakness is that it felt rushed. There are several things I wish they’d spent a little bit more time on. And I admit I was a bit surprised at just how gory the opening scene was—definitely not for the faint of heart!

A few non-spoilery observations (and let me nerd out about David Bowie for a bit): The name of the planet where most of the action happens this time is called Freecloud, and that made me think of an old David Bowie tune, “Wild Eyed Boy From Freecloud,” which was the B-side of the original single release of Bowie’s “Space Oddity.” “Space Oddity,” in case you don’t recall, is the song with the lyrics, “Ground control to Major Tom,” and is a song that is much beloved by real world astronauts. Alas, “Space Oddity” was not a track on Bowie’s album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, however, since the title of this episode is “Stardust City Rag” I can’t help but hope that the name of both the planet and the city are hat-tips to Bowie.

There are two homages to the character of Quark from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. One happens in dialogue, and another is in the background of another scene. There are probably many other Easter eggs I missed, but if you’re setting an Star Trek episode on a lawless planet that seems to be one giant casino, how can you not make some mention of Quark?

Final non-spoilery thing: this isn’t related to tonight’s episode, but have I mentioned that the orchestral soundtrack of the series is available to purchase? I bought it from the iTunes store more than a week ago and have probably listened to it far more than I should. The theme song of the series is just so, so good!

I can’t think of anything more I can say without spoilers, therefore…

Past this point there be plot spoilers. So if you don’t want to be spoiled, don’t read on.

Read More…

Friday Links (good-bye David and Alan edition)

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Thank goodness it’s Friday. Already the thirdd Friday of the new year and I haven’t made much progress on any of my tasks for the month. Let’s not talk about stress, or car accidents, or illnesses, or famous people we have admired most of our lives dying way too soon, eh?

Anyway, here are links to some of the interesting things I read on the web this week.

Link of the Week

The Man Who Buried Them Remembers. It’s short, and a must-read.

This week in Words

2015 Word of the Year is singular “they.”

This week in Health

Why food allergy fakers need to stop: From gluten to garlic, diets and dislikes are being passed off as medical conditions. Chefs and real sufferers have had enough.

Flint Wants Safe Water, and Someone to Answer for Its Crisis.

Ten Things to Know About Vaccines: to raise awareness of another serious health issue: anti-vaxxers.

This week in People Doing Good Things

How to help with the water crisis in Flint, Michigan.

This week in People Panicking Based on Rumors

Jack squat: What iPhone 7 headphone rumors are based on.

This week in Difficult to Classify

ProPublica Launches the Dark Web’s First Major News Site.

News for queers and our allies:

‘Teen Wolf’ Actor Charlie Carver Comes Out as Gay. It’s a well-written, straightforward, not apologetic nor any hemming of hawing coming out, too!

On the other hand, speaking of another actor once on same show: When stars respond to questions about their sexuality with statements like, ‘It shouldn’t matter,’ they are doing more harm than good.

I Might Be Gay, But Please Don’t Call Me Your ‘Gay Best Friend’.

Nearly half of homeless youth are LGBTQ, first-ever city census finds.


How Much Light Is in the Universe?

Traces of the First Stars in the Universe Possibly Found.

The Entire Universe As We Know It In One Spectacular Photograph. So cool!

Science Fiction, Fantasy and Speculation!

Carrie Fisher Interviews Daisy Ridley – and it’s a hoot!

A 51-Year-Old Gay Man’s Response to The Force Awakens.

Star Wars: Men’s rights activists claim boycott cost The Force Awakens $4.2m. Even if true (and the article pokes holes in the math of the bogus claim), that meant it took Disney a half hour longer to break the all-time highest grossing movie record than it would have.

This week in Writing

A Typical Traditional Book Publication in 20 (ish) Steps.

How Could The Winds of Winter Be Published In Only Three Months? Covers similar ground as the previous link and is much longer, but very informative.

Culture war news:

Perverting teen sexting laws: Laws that punish minors as sex offenders for perfectly normal behaviors harm teenagers.

Gay marriage order puts spotlight again on the ‘Ayatollah of Alabama’.

GOP Dead-Enders Fight to Stay Anti-Gay: While most people listening to Nikki Haley’s rebuttal to the SOTU heard nothing but a rejection of Trump, gay-marriage advocates heard something very different: progress.

Archbishops ‘treated like children’ in church sexuality crisis talks. Well, they’re acting children…

Kansas holds children of Colorado veteran who uses medical marijuana.

This Week in the Clown Car

Ted Cruz is not eligible to be president.

Gay Jeopardy! Star Louis Virtel Was Not Snapping for Republicans.

Ted Cruz Didn’t Report Goldman Sachs Loan in a Senate Race.

This week in Other Politics:

We’re onto the phony education reformers: Charter school charlatans and faux reformers take it on the chin.

Obama Was Optimist-in-Chief at State of the Union.

This Week in Racism

An antidote to Islamophobia.

This Week in Stupidity

Stolen, the problematic app that lets you buy and sell people on Twitter. Because of the uproar (it was a wonderful tool for harassing people, besides the creepiness of the basic idea) the app has been withdrawn.

This Week in Police Problems


This Week in Misogyny

These Ridiculous Propaganda Postcards Warn Men About The Dangers Of Women’s Rights From The Early 20th Century.

Thank You Twitter – By Unverifying Milo Yiannopoulos, You Are Standing Up for Women Online.


"I don't know where I'm going from here, but I promise it won't be boring." - David Bowie

“I don’t know where I’m going from here, but I promise it won’t be boring.” – David Bowie (Click to embiggen)

David Bowie’s last release, Lazarus, was ‘parting gift’ for fans in carefully planned finale.

Neil Gaiman Gives David Bowie a Proper Origin Story in “The Return of the Thin White Duke.”

David Bowie and My Queer Awakening.

Was He Gay, Bisexual or Bowie? Yes.

Brian Bedford dead: Voice of Robin Hood dies aged 80 after two-year cancer battle.

Emma Thompson, Helen Mirren and Tim Allen Among Stars Paying Tribute to Alan Rickman.

Remembering Alan Rickman’s Seminal Sci-Fi and Fantasy Roles.

Dick’s Drive-In Founder Dies. (noooooooo! If you’re not from Seattle, you won’t understand. For nearly 62 years he’s run a group of fast food restaurants that pay a living wage, provide full health coverage, and offers each employee up to $20,000 in tuition reimbursement. And their burgers and milk shakes are to die for!)

Things I wrote:

Confessions of a part-time jerk.

Confessions of the badly, madly distracted.

The Man Who Fell to Earth.


Alan Rickman Answers Questions from Fans:

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Alan Rickman is scary as Snape is (but actually a sweetheart):

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David Bowie – Ziggy Stardust:

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David Bowie – Starman (Top Of The Pops, 1972):

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David Bowie – Putting Out Fire (Cat People) Music Video :

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David Bowie – Lazarus (released shortly before his death on his 69th birthday):

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