The Exiles

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The Exiles

Post by Magnus Greel on Sun Nov 29, 2009 7:00 am

Not sure how long I'll keep this up, but I watched it, so I'm reviewing it. This reminded me of a very average sort of Voyager episode. The mood shifts for me as a viewer are very familiar: at first I'm somewhat interested, I start to get my hopes up, everything's competent.... then it doesn't end up really going anywhere in the end. At least it wasn't the flashy overblown camp of Metamorph.

From my notes, in general chronological order:

Yes, shoot that viewscreen, John! I do like the s2 theme. 403 days since Earth? I'm going to write these numbers down, and make that timeline. Candy corn missiles!

I always appreciate it when an SF program attempts to show us weightlessness. It's done well enough here. They're using more of the Moon, with that cave they defuse the "missile" in, I like that too. This is more watchable from the start than Metamorph is. And call me crazy, but I enjoy Helena and her cool demeanor. She looks good with the new uniform, and hair.

John: "... and we just killed it." Oops! Nice brief shot of a capsule attached to an Eagle, landing. Koenig is inordinately pleased to see that the next candy corn pod occupant is a very young woman (and that he hasn't killed her I guess). I was reminded of the Cat in Red Dwarf's "Justice": "Inside this pod is either death or a date!"

I just noticed that Sandra has two moods: utterly innocent niceness, and barely controlled strong irritation.

Interesting shot of Cantor and Koenig talking, through the medical bed. We see them talking while hands pass medical instruments back and forth in the foreground.

I'll hate myself tomorrow for saying this-- and it's weird-- but this time, given their dilemma, Koening just hauling off and lasering Cantor makes sense to me. Sometimes you need to introduce a crazy new factor to resolve a stalemate. Koenig's looking for a good excuse to help the pod people, but can't justify the insane risk. Then it hits him: "If I know absolutely, for certain, that they're no threat, then I can just barely justify this crazy risk to everyone." After all, Cantor sounded unreliable when he was asked if they could re-engineer their recycling in time-- he hesitates and says "If that's all the time we have, yes." That sounds like a "no" to me. Koening has to know the whole thing can be called off, at gunpoint if necessary.

I'd feel better if K had apologized profusely though. If they weren't enemies before, they might be now.

Is that a UFO actress as one of the young aliens?

Oh no... the Two Helenas. Disguised Maya and she take turns arousing our hero... an awkward titillation scene to please backers, or maybe Frieberger, with background music that's like it's from a 1960s cocktail party.

The aliens touch spines to incapacitate-- interesting. I didn't get back from a commercial fast enough when taping I think-- they disappear, then are on another planet I think, "Golas", and then the Moon passes through something and goes... there? What did I miss?

First crappy element, assuming I stay in favor of the John-shooting-Cantor thing (which I always hated): the woman performs sympathetic magic on Helena by mauling her clay head. Sure, they're telekinetic, but from any distance, and why scratch the sculpture?

They watch video on anything anywhere on their palms! "Yes Commander Koenig, we have progressed beyond the need for palm pilots!!"

New guy Tony has learned well from John Koenig's strategem in Metamorph: win by throwing stuff randomly at alien equipment!

I get what happened with the horrible climactic scene now. Clearly, Cantor went through the aging shtick without narration at first, except for Helena's visibly saying, "Look at yourself!", and saying afterward to Tony that she'll explain later, which she doesn't, unless they cut that for commercials. Then they realized they needed some exposition, and used the same footage with Helena, dubbing in awful lines from her explaining every little aspect that they thought the viewers needed to know, explaining it into the ground, and nearly hysterically! You're getting old Cantor!!! You're getting wrinkly Cantor!!! Your teeth are falling out onto the floor Cantor!!! You qualified for Social Security 300 years ago Cantor!!! Now you're wandering aimlessly around the room like a very elderly driver Cantor!!! Now you're about to drop the gun, Cantor!!! Can you hear me Cantor?!? I'm screaming as loudly as I can!!!!!

Another bargain-basement-version-of-original-Trek scene concludes the story, a bit of cutesiness with "charming" music to point out exactly how amusing they want the scene to be.

I'm not sorry I watched it. Overall, I'm mildly interested in continuing. Clearly I'm about to burst with enthusiasm.


Last edited by Magnus Greel on Sun Nov 29, 2009 7:14 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : typos are me)
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Re: The Exiles

Post by SPACE 1899 on Sun Nov 29, 2009 7:48 am

Magnus Greel wrote:And call me crazy, but I enjoy Helena and her cool demeanor. She looks good with the new uniform, and hair.
You're not wrong there, Magnus. The extra budget they must have spent on her new look was worth every penny - and wow - how about that shot in the opening credits of the Year 2 season, where she walks along the corridor with her hair all shiny, wavy and bouncy...
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Re: The Exiles

Post by Senmut on Tue Dec 01, 2009 12:00 am

And a determined look that shouts "Don't mess with me!!!!"
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Re: The Exiles

Post by Commander Koenig on Wed Dec 02, 2009 6:46 am

Love your views on 'The Exiles' episode Magnus, some of the things just cracked me up

I've seen differing views on other discussion forums about the scene where Koenig shoots Cantor; some say it didn't work because it was totally against the character of Koenig to shoot first and ask questions later. I actually think it does fit because, yeah, John isn't the kind of guy to go around shooting everybody but the arrival of these strangers did put him in a tight spot. Does he trust them? Does he put the whole of Alpha's future survival in their hands? John being John - always putting the safety of Alpha first - I think he genuinely believed that he had to err on the side of caution. His cautious attitude is actually shown to be correct in the end because Cantor fakes unconsiousness and goes on to hold Alpha hostage for his and Zova's own ends.

Need to watch the episode again so will hopefully come back with more comments later.

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Re: The Exiles

Post by Magnus Greel on Thu Dec 03, 2009 6:45 pm

Please do CK.... I already have notes on the next episode, but will wait to post. I'm surprised big s2 fans haven't chimed in yet...
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Re: The Exiles

Post by SPACE 1899 on Sat Dec 05, 2009 6:58 am



I must just say that the Exiles is well worth watching purely for the sight of Cantors wife, Zova.
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Re: The Exiles

Post by CHAS1999 on Sat Dec 05, 2009 1:20 pm

I always liked Zova as well as the action and music this Y2 episode brought us.

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The Exiles

Post by Commander Koenig on Sun Dec 06, 2009 8:14 am

Whilst I wouldn't rate this as one of my favourite episodes from Year Two, it does have some moments worthy of comment.

It is nice to see some of the action taking place in other areas of the Moonbase Alpha complex, rather than just the new dinky Command Centre (or Command Center to our American friends). Particularly good is the sequence with John Koenig and Maya on their space walk, examining the capsules, which I think is handled quite nicely.

Great camera work panning across the tunnels of the underground research area of Alpha, and nice shots of the Eagle with the extended arm carrying the capsule.

Regarding the scenes where John, Koenig and Maya are trying to assess possible dangers posed by the capsule. The two silver-suited Alphan's are well protected whilst they are scanning the capsule, and yet, when the capsule has been pierced by laser John, Maya and the two silver-suited Alphan's wander happily up to the capsule completely open to any form of unknown danger that may be emanating from the capsule. And then the thing blows up ... I rest my case.

The scene in John Koenig's quarters where Tony and Helena discuss Cantar and Zova, trying to persuade John to help them is an interesting one on many levels. John is over-cautious, seeing only the worst case scenario, he doesn't know enough about Cantar and Zova's motives and his over-riding concern is for the safety of Alpha and its personnel.

The discussion between Tony, Helena and John is one in which Tony and Helena take the moral high ground, pleading with John to consider what sort of people they are to abandon Cantar and Zova and their people.

I have seen differing views on the scene in which John Koenig shoots Cantar, some putting forward the opinion that this sort of action was out of character. Whilst I believe that John Koenig isn't the sort of man who goes around shooting people at will, I think this scene does actually fit.

Cantar and Zova are young, beautiful people who could easily fool people into trusting them, and John Koenig is fundamentally a compassionate man. but in this case he is hesitating because if he trusts Cantar and Zova then he is placing the future of Alpha in their hands. Is he willing to do this? No, I think he genuinely believed that he had to err on the side of caution.

In the great scheme of things, his caution proved to be well founded because Cantar and Zova go on to hold Alpha hostage. Just look at Helena's reaction when the security guard fires his laser at Cantar with no effect. I think then she realises that John was right all along.

I personally enjoy the lighter, comedic moments in this episode. The scene with Maya transforming into Helena and kissing John is rather telling of the deepening relationship between John and Helena, otherwise how else would he be able to tell which Helena is Helena.

I have a question. When Zova returns to Alpha and demands that John Koenig recover all the remaining capsules, why does Zova need to accompany John and Maya in the recovery Eagle, and what's more why does she also have to go on a space walk with them. I know, it's a convenient way of getting rid of Zova but ...

I actually find the scene where Cantar is ageing quite disturbing. I want to know what state Cantar's body is in when he disappears behind the centre table. Is he a decaying pool of bodily tissue and fluids? Judging by Tony's reaction I think he is.

I like the scene where Helena and Tony reappear in the Alpha corridor, and John comes running to meet them, then casually slows down when he see's Tony is also there. And the playful punch to Tony's midrift.

The final scene is a classic Space 1999 comedic moment, and I love it. Maya's 'me' when she looks up the meaning of Court Martial, and Tony's expression when he gears himself up to be a man and kiss Maya then turns to see the ugly woman in Maya's place is priceless.

Altogether, an enjoyable enough episode with some good model shots, alternative views of Alpha, and comedic moments, wrapped up in moralistic overtones.

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