‘Star Trek: Discovery’ Review: ‘Choose Your Pain’ Puts the Crew in a World of Hurt

Star Trek Discovery Choose Your Pain Review 2

Okay, what was with that ending of the latest Star Trek: Discovery episode? Did “Choose Your Pain” turn Star Trek into a horror show?

“Choose Your Pain” is, as the title suggests, filled with tons of pain, including the minor pain of seeing another Stamets continue to look in his bathroom mirror while the real Stamets walked away. The only levity found in this episode, aside from the first usage of the f-word in Star Trek history, was Rainn Wilson’s highly enjoyable Harry Mudd. Seeing this Star Trek OG character was a sight for sore eyes. Speaking of sore eyes, let’s get into the types of pain caused by both the Klingons and Starfleet.

Lorca’s Eye Problem

As a person with 20/80 vision, I sympathize with Lorca trying to protect his eyes at all costs. When he’s captured by Klingons, I had to actually avoid looking at the screen since the Klingons’ choice of torment for Lorca was to subject his eyes to harsh light. I’m squeamish about any kind of eye prodding.

I thought he would have gone blind after that. Conveniently for the action sequences, he did not, but it seems like his eyes have been badly damaged. He’s been told to get his eyes “fixed,” but what does that entail? Does that mean Lorca will don some eyewear like Geordi La Forge’s visor?  That’d be cool.

Also: we find out he’s killed an entire crew before his turn on the Discovery. It’s a shocker, even though Lorca has been portrayed thus far as a possible villain. But was it for a good reason? Was he really trying to keep them from being abused as Klingon POWs? My money is on him just being bloodthirsty.

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Tyler’s Sexual Assault

Poor Ash Tyler (Shazad Latif) was a victim of sexual assault aboard the Klingon vessel. What else does the line “the captain of this ship has taken a liking to me” to mean? Thankfully, Tyler managed to escape with the help of Lorca, but not before he got some licks in on his attacker. Yes, his attacker is a woman Klingon.

Considering the news we’ve been hearing from Hollywood and the film criticism industry over these last few weeks, it’s quite poignant that this episode would air now. It provides another layer to the conversations we’ve been having about victims and predators. In this case, Star Trek: Discovery is shining a light on male victims of sexual assault at the hands of female perpetrators.

The insinuation that Tyler has been raped repeatedly by the Klingon captain was so subtle in the dialogue between Tyler and Lorca that it’s easy to look past it, or even excuse it away as Tyler purposefully using his sex appeal to his advantage. But the way he swings at the Klingon captain tells a different story. He’s trying to throw back some of the pain she’s caused him.

Tyler’s victimhood might also go unrecognized by some viewers due to how much our society’s view of toxic masculinity keeps us from seeing men as sexual assault victims, especially when it’s at the hands of a woman. Male victims are often scorned or seen as weak. Just look to last week, when Terry Crews revealed he had been sexually assaulted by a powerful Hollywood executive. While Crews received tons of support, there were also people — many of them men — wondering why he didn’t say anything and why he, as a man, didn’t do anything, particularly since his assailant was another man. Some people assumed Crews couldn’t be a victim just because he’s a burly man (that’s not counting the racial implications there are to this assumption).

While women are often wrongly stereotyped as “asking for it,” male victims are also stereotyped in the same way. Somehow, it’s always painted as the victim’s fault — not the perpetrator’s — for their own assault. Even worse for men is when other men might congratulate male victims for “getting lucky” if their assailant happened to be a woman.  I haven’t seen much on the internet in the way of actually recognizing Tyler’s trauma — I’ve only seen one person tweet about wanting the show to explore Tyler’s PTSD. I’ve also seen a person say Tyler ended “a relationship” with the Klingon captain? This was no relationship. Hopefully, Discovery will explore this further. After all, Star Trek has always been about using science fiction to tackle real world social, moral, and ethical questions and quandaries. It’s only right for the new show to dig deep here.

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The Tardigrade’s Abuse

Seeing the Discovery crew abuse the tardigrade so much was quite painful. I won’t go into a “Would the original Star Trek have done this?” debate since the Discovery is a ship under duress in a myriad of ways. However, the tardigrade’s suffering provided a much-needed moral wake-up call for the science crew, which — thanks to Michael — realized the tardigrade was in distress.

They realized this too slowly, though. Honestly, it’s quite surprising and tone-deaf for the crew to not realize that this animal could have some form of sentience. Even Saru, who is prey on his planet, assumes the animal has no smarts. You’d think he of all people would understand what it’s like to be, well, preyed upon.

Folks were also slow to get into gear solely because it’s Michael giving them the advice. I get she got nearly everyone on board the Shenzhou killed, including the beloved Captain Georgiou, but doggone it, do they still not get that everything she does involves trying to save people’s lives?

On the flip side, everyone’s got a right to be mad at her, especially Saru, who idolized Georgiou as much as Michael did. Saru expected to become Georgiou’s next Number One, but, as he told Michael later, he never got that chance. His grief increased when he was made acting captain in Lorca’s absence; a role he felt he would have been more prepared for if he had gotten the same training from Georgiou as Michael did.

Saru didn’t have another option except to use the tardigrade to find Lorca; if another host for the tardigrade DNA was available, the tardigrade could have been spared. But after it went into protection mode, another organism had to step up. That organism was Stamets. The tardigrade was set free, but Stamets has apparently opened up a tear in the space-time continuum that could be the beginning of the mirror-verse and the start of the alternate realities as we know it (hello, Star Trek reboot series). Things are going to get loopy.

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Watch: How to Choose the Right Lens for Your Project

There are so many options when it comes to lenses, so how do you know which one to buy?

Lenses come in all shapes and sizes. Some come chock full of awesome features, some do interesting things to your images, and some are designed to keep costs low for those that don’t have a fortune to spend. With so many lens choices, how are you supposed to know which one is right for your project?

In this video, Peter McKinnon explores the options that are out there for both photographers and filmmakers, and shows you how to figure out whether or not a certain lens is right for you.

Purchasing lenses can be a huge chore, especially if you have no idea what you’re looking for. But McKinnon suggests asking yourself these three questions before you decide on a lens to buy:

  1. Am I shooting photo or video?
  2. What’s my subject?
  3. What’s my price range?

Assuming that your answer to the first question is “video,” you really only need to figure out what your project calls for (what subject you’re shooting) and how much money you can afford to drop on lenses.

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This Website Helps You Choose Lenses Based on Photos You Like

Finding the right lens for your project just got a whole lot more interesting.

Have you ever looked at a photo and thought, “I want to shoot something like that! What lens did that photographer use?” Well, a new website called What the Lens is aiming to help you choose lenses based on images that you like. Created by photographer Willie C, What the Lens is a tool that allows you to scroll through their library of landscape, macro, wildlife, portrait, and travel photos, choose 20 of your favorites, and then uses its magic to pick a lens based on your preferences.

According to PetaPixel, the site works by sourcing photos from 500px and examines the EXIF data of your 20 selected photos to choose up to three ideal lenses for you.

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Which Microphone Pick Up Pattern Should You Choose for Your Film?

Don’t know the first thing about microphone pick up patterns? This video should help.

Choosing a mic can be difficult, especially if you don’t know the difference between an omnidirectional microphone and a supercardioid microphone. In this video from Aputure, Stephen Harrod, which has done audio on VICE, HBO, and ABC shows, explains what pick up patterns are, as well as which ones work best for different projects. Check it out below:

Harrod breaks down four common pick up patterns:

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Why Did Matthew McConaughey Choose ‘Dark Tower’ Over ‘Guardians of the Galaxy 2’?

Why Matthew McConaughey Chose The Dark Tower

We all know that often times the actors we see in movies weren’t the only ones who were in consideration for the parts in question. In an alternate universe there are movies where Will Smith is Neo in The Matrix and David Bowie is Gandalf in The Lord of the Rings trilogy. And we almost got to see Matthew McConaughey in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, but he chose another project instead.

This year we’ll see Matthew McConaughey in the villainous role of the Man in Black in the adaptation of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower, and it was this role that he opted to take instead of one in Guardians of the Galaxy 2. But the question is why? Thankfully, the actor has explained his reasoning behind the decision.

Find out why Matthew McConaughey chose The Dark Tower instead of Guardians of the Galaxy 2 below.

In an interview with Playboy, the discussion turned to McConaughey’s choices in blockbuster movies in 2017, and the actor explained his reasoning in choosing one over the other:

“I like Guardians of the Galaxy, but what I saw was ‘It’s successful, and now we’ve got room to make a colorful part for another big-name actor.’ I’d feel like an amendment. The Dark Tower script was well written, I like the director [Nikolaj Arcel] and his take on it, and I can be the creator, the author of the Man in Black—a.k.a. the Devil—in my version of this Stephen King novel. We’ve done the first one. It’s a fantastic thriller that takes place in another realm, an alternate universe, but it’s very much grounded. For instance, the gunslinger’s weapon isn’t a lightsaber or something; it’s a pistol. I enjoyed approaching my character as if I were the Devil having a good time, getting turned on by exposing human hypocrisies wherever he finds them.”

Essentially, McConaughey wanted to feel like a core part of the creation of the big screen world that he was choosing to be part of. Honestly, you can’t blame him for wanting to be integral in the creation of something like that from the beginning rather than being an additional part of a machine that has already been proven to run smoothly. Funnily enough, his part in Guardians of the Galaxy 2 also would have been a villainous one, though we still don’t know for sure who that character would have been just yet.

More than likely, McConaughey probably has a little more creative freedom on The Dark Tower to establish the Man in Black character as his own than he would have by joining the Marvel Cinematic Universe. We’re still waiting to see exactly what he did with that character since the first trailer for The Dark Tower hasn’t been released yet, but hopefully that will change soon.

The Dark Tower arrives on July 28, 2017 while Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 debuts on May 5, 2017.

The post Why Did Matthew McConaughey Choose ‘Dark Tower’ Over ‘Guardians of the Galaxy 2’? appeared first on /Film.


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