Tag Archives: tv

The Best Recurring Star Trek Characters


So who are they? In my opinion, the best of the sidekicks, you know, the guys who periodically reappear in their respective series, who enhance the regular cast, and without whom, the show would not be the same?

Well, to be honest, the list is dominated by recurring characters from The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine, as, if you are looking for the best, then these two series were probably the best incarnations of Star Trek. And of course, I do have one hell of a bias towards DS9.

So witout further ado (and as it has been ages since I have done a Star Trek related blog post) here are my top five recurring characters from the world of Star Trek:

5) Rom

Rom started out as an idiot and never really lost that tag. But he grew. From Quark’s kid brother who was basically the punch bag, it was realised that he had a brain and also a personality that went beyond huh. Plus he also managed to marry Leeta – what more could could any side kick want?

4) Guinan

I loved Guinan. Her character really brought something special to the Enterprise-D, and whenever she was on the show, it became a memorable episode. From her words of foreboding when dealing with the Borg to her sense of altered reality, Guinan was a gift of a character.

She was also played by Whoopi Goldberg, who really is one of the finest actresses from Hollywood, and in my opinion, one of the most underrated talents from the film industry. Part of Guinan’s magic, came from Goldberg, who lit up the screen with her presence. Guinan may have only been a side kick, but her recurring moments made her one of the most memorable characters from Trek cannon.

3) Nog

If you had watched Emissary, then, you really did not have much hope for Nog. The dead beat son of Rom, whose first bit of onscreen presence was stealing some junk accompanied by an idiot.

But my oh my, what a difference seven seasons can make. By the end, he has grown into a minor Starfleet Officer (with the rank of Lieutenant) and was well on the way to making his way up the grease pole. More importantly, Nog’s character was central to one of the franchise’s finest offerings, It’s Only a Paper Moon. This episode along with its companion piece The Siege of AR-558, gave so much depth to Nog. A credit to DS9’s writers is that all the characters, even the minor ones and the villains, grew so much under their care.

The growth of Nog into a wonderful person is probably one of Star Trek’s most understated achievements and as part of the fantastic DS9 series is a metaphor for the DS9 series itself. An unsteady start, that slowly becomes more comfortable with itself before being able to strike out and stand above the rest.

2) Q

It was hard not to put Q at the top of the list. Maybe it is due to my DS9 bias, which I admit to. But also, to be honest, Q appeared in a lot of stinkers. For every Q Who there was unfortunately, Qpid. Well, at least Qpid gave us one of TNG’s most memorable quotes – you just have to love Worf!.

But the reason why Q is also rated so highly, is that some of the most memorable episodes involve Q. Plus, let us be honest, Q was a gift of a character – he is omnipitent – how cool is that!

Oh yes, whenever Q and Picard where on screen, the chemistry could be electric. I have already mentioned Q Who, but who can forget the series finale or the brilliant Tapestry, which has to be one of the finest installments in Star Trek? Q, for all his faults, and lousy episodes (for which there were plenty) was also a brilliant recurring character.

1) Martok

And so, my favourite, recurring character is Martok. And for one simple reason. Everytime he appeared on screen, you know there was a moment of cool about to happen.

And it did not begin promisingly for this character. Taken by the Dominion, the first time we see Martok, it is a Changeling! But he came back, first dishonoured, but in time he became the Chancellor of the Klingon Empire. Trust me, any episode with Martok in it will make you smile. His on screen presence, the story lines that involved him, everything to do with General Martok was amazing. Everything he said was electric.

And if you want to see how cool Martok is, just take a peek here. Possibly one of the most memorable scenes from Star Trek, and he only says one word during the song. That is why he is cool and that is why, in my opinion, Martok is the best of Star Trek’s recurring characters.

But what do you guys think?

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My Polish Interview!

As you know, I was at the Quest Europe Festival this year as a jury member.

And while I was there, I had two interviews on Polish TV. One of them you can see here:

Watch the interview by clicking here!

Yes, I do talk a lot! It was a great interview and thanks to the RTV Lubuska team and Agnieszka, the interviewer, who were really great to me and made me feel so comfortable. Almost too comfortable as can be seen by the amount I say 🙂

In the interview, I talk about my experiences at the festival as a jury member, the films I saw, my experiences as a film maker, what I think of Poland and also the influences on my own film making.

And I do talk about all of them in great detail. The Polish dubbing means that it is difficult to gauge what I say (unless you speak Polish) so I will give you the gist version.

First of all, I talk in great detail about the festival . What I saw, the breadth of the films but also in what I enjoyed in particular. In addition to the finalist films, I also saw a lot of ‘Out of Competition’ flicks during the festival.

Secondly, I talk about my own filming. I am asked about my own influences, and I cite my family as massive influences, in a very positive way. Coming from two big families, from two different countries gives me a lot of stories to draw upon and a wealth of possibilities to make movies from.

I also talk about ‘Caution Wet Paint‘ and Agnieszka makes the connection between me and a much more famous and amazing Charles Duke! I also talk about my film influences, in particular I talk of my favourite director, Mani Ratnam and a little about Indian Films.

Finally, I am asked a little about Poland, and what I thought of the Lubuska area, in particular my time in Zielona Gora. As you can see from my blog, I love it! A fascinating area, with a diverse and rich history to it, Lubuska is very much an underrated part of the world.

While I have had interviews before, this has to be the glossiest interview I have had to date! I am a struggling film maker, and very new in this cinematic journey. As a director, the nature of film itself means that the turnaround time for a project is not months but often years. Remember, I shot Jay and Kay Save the World in 2008 (released it in 2009) and still now, I am discussing it and it is still very relevant in my life and in what I do. It is still a part of my work along with other current projects and projects that will be done in the future.

Once again, I have to thank Agnieszka, the RTV Lubuska team and the people behind Quest Europe for organising the interview, and giving me a chance to express so much of my thoughts to a wider public. For that I am very grateful!

On another note, stick around on this blog. As you know, last month I talked about my great Euro Road Trip. Oh yes, that was only halfway, as I have so much more to tell you…

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Memories of Nicktoons…I love Doug

I watched far too much TV when I was younger. That and video games. I suppose that is the symptom of the capitalist way. Stay indoors, panic and under the not-so-watchful eye of parents in the 1990’s, waste your childhood on electronic media. Oh, the memories…

So instead of getting drunk in a park, or trying to clamber round a building site, or hiding from police cars for doing dumb things, my summer days were spent watching cartoons on satellite TV.

Oh, the joys of Satellite TV. I remember the day when my dad walked into the house late from work and had a surprise in the boot. A satellite dish! The joy of it. And I did not spend my free summer days watching overrated sports nor watching bad movies that no one else wanted. No, I spent my summer days watching Nicktoons! In particular, I loved watching Doug. NOT DISNEY’S DOUG, but the original and best on Nickleodeon, that orange flavoured arm of the Viacom conglomerate.

Now you see, the key question to ask is this. Was that a childhood wasted or not? When I look back at Doug, I do not regret it, like I regret sitting through German classes. I may have a GCSE in the subject, but my German is limited to hi, bye, thanks and train. I spent a lot of time at school and left holding a clutch of certificates and have effectively not used any of the education that I have now.

But Doug, wow. To be honest, if you asked me to recall an episode, I would have a lot of difficulty doing so. Come on, this is TV, my brain has been warp=ed by the tin-pot screen. But the great thing about Doug, like most childhood memories that are fondly recalled is that it gave a glimpse into the adult world. Watching Doug felt like watching yourself. You empathised with his problems, because, he was you, he was me. What was happening to him happened to me. Awkwardness with girls, doing school that you did not really like, bullies, peer pressure, discovering new things of the adult world so long hidden from you by the protective blanket of childhood. All these things and more were seen through the eyes of Doug Funnie and his friends and family. It made for fascinating viewing, because, like many soap operas today make for compelling viewing, they are real to the person watching them. Doug, was, very real…

He was shy, funny, had a hidden talent, was overwhelmed by many thing he saw, was loyal to his friends, was fond of his family although he did not see eye to eye. For me and for probably many kids of the 1990’s, before the hard liquor, trouble with the cops and scrabbling round building sites took place, this was life. And we subscribed to him, every Saturday morning, when the hard liquor was not deforming my brain. Mmm, cartoons and liquor make up the bulk of my childhood memories. No wonder my generation and myself is in such trouble…

But to be honest, I left Doug behind a long time ago. Like many things from childhood, trying to get back into them now is trying to fit into your old favourite jacket from when you were eleven years old. It may be thought of as a good idea, but when push comes to shove, it is a terrible thing to harken back to a bygone age. Memories should remain just that. Great to dip your toe into, but utterly futile to relive it…

Intro Sequence to Doug, just to whet the memory cells…

http://www.dailymotion.com/embed/video/xe5l82
Doug Intro (1991-1994) by TheBumperMan13

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Easter TV

I do look forward to the whole Easter weekend when it comes to television. In between shifts, it is nice to sit down and watch one of those Ancient Bible Stories. You know, I want to see Charlton Heston riding a chariot or holding the Ten Commandments above his head. Hell, I want to see it all. The toppling of the Philistine’s temple, a heroic revolt . Hey, I will even take the non-Christian tales.

But where are those films? Those legendary bladder busters, relieved by the handy nearness of my own toilet. Nowhere! Check the TV schedules (do we still have them in this digitised/multichannel world), and it is filled with lousy programmes about someone’s upcoming wedding. Ugh…just leave them alone!

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Mi Guatas (2)…

I like…The Defiant!

The Defiant was one of the best things about Star Trek. Okay, let me redefine that. The Defiant was the best ship on Star Trek. Hell, it was probably the best Sci-Fi ship ever. You have to think, before the late nineties, with special effects costing so much, ‘space ships’ may have had loads of guns, but never really used them that much due to the costs of SFX. Since the late 1990’s, every starship has been blowing everything else to bits and so they all fade into sameyness.

But The Defiant came at the right time. It was the first time a space ship on TV kicked ass as it was at the time when SFX was becoming affordable. So when Sisko called out ‘Battle Stations’, you know there was going to be fireworks! Plus, being on the iconic Deep Space Nine meant that it had a hallowed place in TV history…

It was a shame that The Defiant was destroyed by the end of the series. But like everything on DS9, it had to go. The series was wrapped up perfectly, and of course, the original Defiant had to go along with the rest of the show. So I look back through reruns and internet streams as the most fun you could ever see on the small screen…

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