ext_2512: ([music] lady)
[identity profile] tafadhali.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] 1summermission
Episode Notes:
+ “No parent should be expected to pay back the love they’ve given their children.” “Well, why the hell not!” Oh, Lwaxana.
+ I am sorry I always mix you up with Charles Nelson Reilly, David Ogden Stiers, just because you were both on TV in the 1960s and you are both gay and you have three names. You look and sound nothing alike. I don't mix up your careers! Just your names!
+ I thought I had a third thing, but nope.

Overall Reaction: Any episode that opens with Deanna sighing "My mother is onboard" is probably going to be one I like, but this one surprised me with its dramatic power. Majel Barrett is capable of taking Lwaxana to a very vulnerable and moving place (as she does in the DS9 episode "The Forsaken", when she finally has a very authentic moment with Odo in a stopped elevator), something that one might not expect from the frequent one-note jokiness of the character. Her awareness of her age (however much she may defy it most of the time!) and of loss is one of the things that can bring real poignancy to the character, and make you appreciate how much she throws herself into enjoying every moment of her life the rest of the time. She's a bit of a whirlwind, but she isn't stupid and she feels things deeply. I loved her scene with Deanna, where they got to commiserate about her grief over the loss of Deanna's father and over the loss she is about to face.

David Ogden Stiers is also fantastic, in his role as the scientist who falls in love with Lwaxana's vivaciousness just as he is reaching the point when his society has elected that "elders" must die with grace and dignity, to spare the future generation the burden of caring for them as their minds and bodies weaken. His romance with Lwaxana, which makes him begin to question the traditions he has cherished, is touching -- I may or may not have gone full Cher Horowitz at some point and said, "Old people can be so sweet!" -- and he plays the character's internal conflict in an understated but powerful way.

This is how I like my Trek -- maybe not resolving anything, but taking on a serious subject from a variety of perspectives and giving us a moving, humanistic story.

Star Rating: *** 1/2

Quote of the Episode:
"As people aged, they... their health failed. They became invalids. And those whose families could no longer care for them were put away, into... deathwatch facilities, where they waited in loneliness for the end to come, sometimes... for years. They had meant something; and they were forced to live beyond that, into a time of meaning nothing. Of knowing that they could now only be the beneficiaries of younger people's patience. We are no longer that cruel, Lwaxana." (Dr. Timicin, explaining his people's customs; breaking my heart)
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My (Continuing) One Summer Mission

August 2014

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