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- Sanity Slippage Song:
- Uses Buddy Holly's "Everyday" for the scene in "Unimatrix Zero" where Janeway gets assimilated.
- "Clementine" in "Equinox Pt. 3."
- When a brain virus leaves Riker comatose, he— ....no, wait. You better see this one for yourself. ("Shades of Grey")
- Saying Too Much:
- From "Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man" (X-Files):"And he's constantly writing, constantly trying to get that story out there... and constantly getting back... rejection letters. Harsh, demoralizing papers. Coming one after another, after another... stacking up higher and higher and higher into a glowing pack of hate, constantly looking down and judging you... JUDGING YOU UNTIL THE ONLY SOLACE YOU CAN FIND IS DOING YOUR CRAPPY INTERNET REVIEW SHOW!!"
- He can relate to Captain Braxton's desire to blow Voyager up. ("Relativity")"I know it's rough, buddy, I've been having to deal with Voyager for thirteen yea— SPIDERS! Nonononono you will not crawl into my ear and make me kill again, spider, not this time~♪
- "Fascination" really speaks to him. A bit too much."There's nothing quite like the sensation where, at the root of where you live, everything has gone to shit and you can do nothing about it. It's like you can sense that the little components of your soul just went "vizzle" and now you're broken. You could eat something that's horribly bad for ya, until you feel worse that you've screwed up your body too, now. You can try finding things that make you happy to look at, but then you remember that they've blocked pornography on your work computer. Seems that all that's left is...finding something that you hate. And just venting at it and venting at it until you've finally purged yourself of all that negative energy... (sighs contently) Back to the review!"
- Obviously, the Wonder Woman pilot is incomplete, with post-production notes for things to be added in later. These start out as mundane notes such as "Enhance skyline" and quickly turn into Chuck instructing himself to "Turn your back on hope and love" and plant vomit in an annoying neighbor's trashcan.
- Chuck can relate to an alien's temptation to coerce sex from Riker. ("First Contact", TNG)"If the locals are us, then, essentially, she is anyone who has ever been curious about that kind of thing. ...Has had those kinds of thoughts. ...wondered what Tali looks like when she's out of that suit... (sputters) SHADDAP! DON'T JUDGE ME!"
- From "Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man" (X-Files):
- Scandalgate: In the review of "Deep Throat" from The X-Files, he admits that this is his pet peeve.
- Schizo Tech: On an X Files episode he noted that in UFO lore the aliens have oddly inconsistent levels of technology. Sure, they can travel between stars and their metallurgy is far beyond ours, but they apparently can't perform surgery without leaving extremely obvious scars.
- Sci Fi Ghetto: Discusses this in his introduction to Red Dwarf (which can be found here), and points out that whilst E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial may have lost to Gandhi in the Oscars, Gandhi has yet to be inducted into the National Film Registry alongside science fiction classics like Star Wars, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Blade Runner, and the aforementioned E.T..
- Sci-Fi Writers Have No Sense of Scale: Points this out in the "Terra Nova" (ENT) review. The episode tells us that colonists from Earth to a nearby Earth-like planet became angry at Terran authorities for wanting to send another group of about 200 colonists to the same planet.Chuck: Wait, they didn't want another 200 people to land on the same planet... How much lebensraum do you people need?! Are Berman and Braga really this stupid? It's a planet! How can these idiots not realize how freaking huge a planet is, considering they will likely never ever leave the one they're on?
- Notes the same issue with 600 Ba'ku having this objection in Star Trek: Insurrection.
- A minor one in the 2009 reboot where Pine!Kirk ends up withing walking distance of Nimoy!Spock on the same planet.
- The Scrappy: In-Universe, he hates Neelix more than any other main character in a Trek show (with only guest character Okona being worse).
- He also lists the "Annoying Character" for any non-Voyager Trek show.
- Screams Like a Little Girl: At the start of the Night of the Comet review.
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: In the review for Wonder Woman (2011 pilot), he explains why this trope works for someone like Batman but not Wonder Woman:
- "Batman exists in a world where crime is so rampant that ordinary people live in fear and the judicial system is powerless to curtail it. Wonder Woman's world is so squeaky clean, her number-one concern is somebody testing drugs with harmful side effects."
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!:
- He tries to do this in the "Unimatrix Zero" review after the sight of Neelix running Voyager's science station is followed up by the revelation that two rebel Borg drones have somehow commandeered a Borg Sphere, which is supposed to have a crew of several hundred, if not thousand drones.That's it, I'm too old for this shit. (sound of door closing)
- His review of episode 8 of Kannazuki no Miko has him so infuriated by what can be summed up as "magic lesbians" that he declares "Fuck this episode, I'm out!"
- Chuck left Channel Awesome the same time Linkara did in the wake of "Change The Channel". Considering he never got a huge bump from his association and he supports himself through Patreon these days, nobody's considering this a big loss.
- He tries to do this in the "Unimatrix Zero" review after the sight of Neelix running Voyager's science station is followed up by the revelation that two rebel Borg drones have somehow commandeered a Borg Sphere, which is supposed to have a crew of several hundred, if not thousand drones.
- Screw Yourself: Harry once commented on becoming smitten with his own hologram. ("Latent Image")
- "Seinfeld" Is Unfunny: Mentioned In-Universe in the review of The X-Files Pilot. SF Debris claims that the show is one of the best TV product of and biggest influence on The '90s, and that today it might seem uninspired or cliché, however, when it first aired, it was very innovative.
- Self-Deprecation: Chuck after spending the first eight minutes of his review of Transformers talking in deep detail about how the relationship of the summer blockbuster to science fiction is both blessing and curse. After the commercial break:"Okay, I stand by everything I have said, and I do advocate rational discourse over a hurricane of trolls. But I'm also an Internet critic and part of the job is, well, this part of the show now, where I act like a guffawing dickhead."
- This one was a long time coming: To commemorate "Captain Picard Day", Riker mockingly imitates the Captain. Chuck replies, in Sir Pat Stu's accent, that it's "the second worst impression" he's ever heard. ("The Pegasus")
- He pulls a similar gag in the Babylon 5 episode "The Corps Is Mother, The Corps Is Father," where it was Bester commenting on how bad Ivanova's Russian accent is. This could be a joke at how Walter Koenig used to play a character with a bad Russian accent, or self-deprecating humor.
- There's a running gag about him being easily and crudely Distracted by the Sexy, to the point that that almost all remotely raunchy jokes in the show include a barb at himself for making them. He's directly compared himself to Benny Hill in this respect.
- This one was a long time coming: To commemorate "Captain Picard Day", Riker mockingly imitates the Captain. Chuck replies, in Sir Pat Stu's accent, that it's "the second worst impression" he's ever heard. ("The Pegasus")
- Separated by a Common Language: In the third "Torchwood: Miracle Day" review, is quickly irritated by their insistence on running the joke that British people and Americans use different words for things into the ground, pointing out that it'd become a tired old cliche, years ago.
- Although in "Rose" he pointed out that it was rather amusing when Rose went to find the C.E.O. in the basement.
- Sequential Symptom Syndrome: Chuck doesn't buy the idea that Star Trek inspired the cell phone, but in "Realm of Fear," he does give credit to the franchise for predicting hypochondriacs using the Internet to diagnose themselves.
- Serious Business: He reveals while reviewing "Real Life" that his twin sons were born premature, and overcame incredible odds to both be alive and healthy today. So he is quite upset at the episode's trivialization of that horrible situation, saying that people should go through it to build character (especially since the show forgot about it anyway).
- Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness: When Dukat talks to Weyoun and calls him "anhedonic"note . Chuck replies "Someone got a word-a-day calendar" then makes up this bit.Dukat: I suggest you stop this ultracrepidarianism, Weyoun, especially in front of that xanthippe we work for to avoid acting mendaciously.
Weyoun: Your newfound logological hobby is leading to excessive magniloquence, so I assert you circumvent words of a hippopotomonstrosesquipedalian nature.
- Shaped Like Itself: Brought up in his second My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic-related review. He mentions that, since Discord was largely based off of Q, Lauren Faust had wanted his VA to "sound like John de Lancie". She ended up with... John de Lancie.Chuck: So, mission accomplished.
- Shipping: He jokingly ships Mulder and Scully in-universe, i.e. in his review. From The X-Files episode "Deep Throat" review:Chuck: We then get to return to Mulder and Scully in a bar in the midst of the day working that sexual chemistry of theirs.
Mulder: I've got something to show you.
Chuck: Yeah, you know it. Sometimes the fan fics just write themselves.
- Shithead Has A Point: From the intro of "The Cloud" review.Kes: I don't think the captain is an idiot. She cares a great deal about her crew.
Neelix: You don't care a great deal about your crew and introduce them to the specter of death at every opportunity!
Chuck: You know, he may be a shithead, but he's got a point!
- Similar exchange from Fair Trade:Chuck: See, he thinks that when he stops being able to serve Janeway as a guide, she'll boot him off the ship. What, you mean, just use you until you can no longer serve her, and then cast you aside? Tha— [pause] Huh. Fairly astute there, Neelix.
- "The Void", which notably did not have a Stupid Neelix Moment, but rather Neelix piping up to say something "useful and well thought-out. (Beat) It's time for some blood tests! Changelings have obviously infiltrated Voyager!"
- Similar exchange from Fair Trade:
- Shared Universe: He cameod in Linkara's review of One More Day, making him part of the Reviewaverse. He also provided his Psycho Janeway for Linkara's review of a Star Trek Voyager comic.
- Shout-Out: Now with their own page.
- Shown Their Work: His reviews of Red Dwarf are very well-researched.
- Chuck knows his Chinese, which opened the way to a very interesting lecture about "Darmok." He also spotted the faux Chinese in Back to Earth."If it seems indulgent, remember, there's not a whole lot of opportunities to practice Mandarin in Wisconsin."
- His review of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic discusses the franchise and Lauren Faust's past works.
- Not to mention "Doctor Who: Lost in Time", where the first episode, "Wiped, Junked, But Not Forgotten" went very deep into detail concerning the lost episodes of Doctor Who.
- In his review of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, he takes several moments to quote passages from King Lear, Moby-Dick, and Paradise Lost, and explains how each story ties into the theme the overall movie. He also explains the history behind how the movie got made.
- The Twin Peaks review was pretty impressive.
- His review of "Chain of Command" points out how the interrogation techniques in the episode (apart from the torture and drugs... probably) match techniques used by real-world police and military. This includes quotes from the US Army Field Manual on Interrogation.
- While he admits Stargate took some liberties and has some major face-palming elements, he praises the times they get the research right, like about how languages evolve and how Jackson couldn't speak ancient Egyptian despite being able to read it without hearing it spoken for a while due to not having a clue about the pronunciation of a language unspoken for 3000 years. He mentions that in contrast to other works by Roland Emmerich, Stargate might as well be a lecture by Carl Sagan - and you don't actually feel dumber after watching it unlike The Day After Tomorrow or 2012.
- His review of John Carpenter's The Thing (1982) has him reading a passage of the original novella, Who Goes There? at the beginning.
- His "Rise and Fall of the Comic Empire" series is essentially a long history dissertation in video form, quite well-researched and engaging.
- His review of Atlantis: The Lost Empire has an in-depth recap of the history behind the Disney Renaissance, starting with the walkout by Don Bluth and other animators. In addition, he has a very detailed research about the mythology behind Atlantis; for instance, the Atlanteans were depicted as the bad guys.note
- The review of The Day After includes Chuck giving some depressingly accurate details about nuclear war, from the history of the Manhattan Project to the actual effects of nuclear detonation.
- Chuck knows his Chinese, which opened the way to a very interesting lecture about "Darmok." He also spotted the faux Chinese in Back to Earth.
- Significant Anagram: He names his character in Knights Of The Old Republic "Traven Rhad." It's an anagram for "Darth Revan."
- Sincerity Mode: In contrast to his usual approach, Chuck will occasionally make a point of gushing and talking at length about something he thought was done well, made him think, or just needed a sober explanation with less of the usual humor.
- Such as the epilogue for the Tapestry review.
- Or the In The Pale Moonlight Coda.
- Or the Prime Directive rant.
- Maybe even the Passing Through Gethsemane Coda.
- And the dedication to Elizabeth Sladen at the end of the Seeds of Doom review.
- Or the episode "Code Of Hero," which praised Dinobot's character growth, tenacity, bravery, and skill.
- Also, in the Real Life review, when he compares the death of the Doctor's dying (holographic) daughter, to his own experience of almost losing his twin boys.
- In the re-upload of Shuttlepod One, praises the professionalism of many of the actors in Enterprise, who were let down because the writers and producers simply didn't seem to care about what they were giving them to work with.
- Single-Precept Religion: The Bajoran religion is occasionally mocked for showing signs of this, but particularly in the review of "Children of Time" (DS9).Kira: I miss [First Minister Shakaar], but the last time we were on Bajor we went to the Kenda shrine, and we asked the prophets if we were meant to walk the same path.
Kira: We're not.
Chuck: Well... that's certainly a quick, neat, and ridiculous explanation. I'm surprised it wasn't revealed that he was a Leo and she was a Sagittarius, and their signs clashed. If they do, I don't know, I don't respect astrology enough to even look it up to accurately mock it. But they're really keeping it vague for such a life-changing decision, I mean, do they make use of one of the orbs to get some vision of the future? Is that how they found out? Or is this just asking some Vedec who was trying to take a nap?
Vedec: (sleepy) Huh? What? No, you're not compatible, now go away, prophets be with you.
Random Bajoran: Uh... Vedec? My father just died...
Vedec: He's rotting in hell. Prophets be with you. Go away.
- This turns into a small Brick Joke when later in the episode we find out that Kira was killed when the Defiant accidentally jumped 200 years back into the past and crashed on a planet in the Gamma Quadrant.Chuck: Ah. Well, I have to credit them this much: I suppose dying 200 years in the past is a definite sign that you're not destined to be with somebody.
Vedec: Ha! Told you! Prophets be with you. Fuck off.
- This turns into a small Brick Joke when later in the episode we find out that Kira was killed when the Defiant accidentally jumped 200 years back into the past and crashed on a planet in the Gamma Quadrant.
- Sins of Our Fathers: His interpretation of the Ninth Doctor following Day of the Doctor. The War Doctor was the one who made the decision to burn Gallifrey but it's the Nineth Doctor who has to live with that decision and the universe it created. In Chuck's words, he was born with Original Sin.
- More humorously, he suggests that the reason why Worf is so disgusted by Alexander is that Klingon Religion states that Klingon Parents can go to Hell (well, Gre'thor, but same thing) for the dishonor of their children.
- Slices, Dices, and Makes Julienne Fries: Spoofed the line in the Projections review, when "kinoplasmic radiation" is used to justify or Hand Wave almost every plot development.Chuck: What versatile radiation: it screws up all the computers, the transporters, and human brains. It slices, it dices, it cuts through a tin can and still slices through a tomato!
- Small Name, Big Ego: Invoked when he accuses Star Trek: Nemesis director Stuart Baird of this; Baird, at the time a well-regarded editor and fledgling action director, continually got LeVar Burton's name wrong (he called him Laverne). Burton, who has many talents and has been recognized for all of them, is highly esteemed by his peers and beloved by fans, and is an all-around nice guy, certainly did not deserve that treatment. As Chuck himself points out, it's basic courtesy and Baird should never have done it more than once.
- There's an added wrinkle that Chuck doesn't actually mention: Rick Berman wanted LeVar to direct, but Paramount went over his head to install Baird as director. In effect, Burton was being mistreated by the man who basically stole his job. No wonder he's more than happy to lay all the blame for the movie's failure at the guy's feet.
- Smoke Out: Time onboad the Krenim ship has no meaning ("Year of Hell"), so Annorax can live forever, never aging because that has to do with "time." While continuing to breathe, eat, etc., since none of that to do with time because FLASH BOMB! (screen goes white)
- Smug Snake: Chuck portrays Lutan from "Code of Honor" as a particularly unlikable Smug Snake, with his every attempt to project authority and confidence failing and instead coming off as entitled, childish, obnoxious idiocy.
- So Was X: His retort to a TNG Admiral's assertion that "for 500 years, every ship that has borne the name of the Enterprise has become a legend! This one is no different.""Which lumps the NX-01 into this group, too. Though I suppose you could argue the Titanic has become a legend."
- Tom was thinking along similar lines, as he drew inspiration from "an ancient steamship called the Titanic." ("Year of Hell")"For some reason I was thinking of a doomed ship Captained by someone who thoughtlessly steered the crew into harm's way, causing a disaster so legendary all would remember it for centuries to come."
- It's no accident that Janeway's ex-fiancee gave her a copy of Dante's Inferno as a gift, either. ("Shattered")Mark: For some reason, I picked out the story about a man who journeys through the eternal torments of the damned! (chuckle which devolves into a whimper)
- "Voyager may not be as big as a Galaxy ship, but she's quick and smart — like her Captain!" ("Relativity")"...and of course devoid of a soul!"
- When reminded that Insurrection is supposed to be 'lighthearted and fun'' Chuck's rejoinder is that the last person who tried to combine Moral Dilemma + Lighthearted and Fun was the Clown in "The Thaw.""You know, the VILLAIN!"
- Michael Pillar was convinced that LeVar Burton should submit Raymond Chandler parody with avian-headed femme fatales and cops for Emmy consideration."I'm sure Ed Wood thought Plan 9 from Outer Space was brilliant, too."
- In another moment of Pillerian inspiration: He decided that Ferengi female emancipation would ultimately result in Quark and Rom ending up in drag somehow."...And like many ideas, like nerve gas and butt-chugging, this was a bad one."
- Likewise, the many "brave" gambles made by John Nathan-Turner in his classic, "The Twin Dilemma." However, like a BASE jump gone wrong, purposely flouting all story convention doesn't make the result suck less.
- Tom was thinking along similar lines, as he drew inspiration from "an ancient steamship called the Titanic." ("Year of Hell")
- So Bad, It's Good: Discussed in his reviews of "Threshold" and "The Infinite Vulcan" — while he considers both episodes to be technically the worst episodes of Star Trek: Voyager and Star Trek: The Animated Series respectively, he also indicates that he considers "Twisted" and "The Ambergris Element" to be the actual least-watchable episodes of their respective shows, due to them just being boring and idiotic instead of entertainingly bad.
- Society Marches On: Lampshaded in his review of "Angel One", where the Federation go in prepared with the most up-to-date information they have on the planet... from over 62 years ago. Chuck points out how stupid it is that societies never seem to evolve in Trek, noting that in 1950's America a black man could be arrested from drinking from the wrong fountain, but skip-forward to the present day and a black man has just been elected President for the second time.
- Something Completely Different: His review of Mass Effect 2. The first time he ever reviewed a video game (it was actually a full-length annotated playthrough, followed by his usual detailed analysis).
- So Okay, It's Average: Declared this of Star Trek III.
- Sophisticated as Hell: A common tactic of his, especially in his otherwise more "serious" videos, to remind everyone not to take him or what he says too seriously.Chuck: Once again I will use the words 'magnetic balls' to show that I'm not anyone special myself.
- Soundtrack Dissonance: When Eddington asks Sisko for a "rousing" song before they head into battle, Chuck inserts the Piña Colada Song.
- Janeway blowing up the Caretaker array to the accompaniment of banjo music. How apropos.
- The first video in "Profit and Lace" (Chuck's Christmas selection) plays Andy Williams over lesbian/gay spank material. The final video closes out with "The Little Drummer Boy" while Quark and his mother hurl vicious insults at each other offscreen. It's glorious.
- The ending montage in "The Fall of Night" is set to "Peace in Our Time" by Eddie Money. The ironic juxtaposition of this song against the images on screen is chilling.
- A brief history of Neelix's attempts at deception throughout the series. His faceplants are deserving of "Smooth Criminal." ("Resistance")
- When weighing the triumphs of Trek's respective Captains — forestalling the Borg invasion of Earth, sealing away the Pah-Wraiths and saving the entire Alpha Quadrant, preserving the very existence of all sapient life, and getting into a sissy fight with some criminals on a catwalk — we see Archer proudly accepting his accolades while "You're the Best" blares. ("These Are the Voyages...")
- Space Jews: Takes a hammer to the concept in his Mass Effect 2 review - or at least, the idea that the batarians match to Arabs because we've seen a lot of batarian terrorists and there was one batarian religious fanatic.
- Space Whale Aesop: Parodied in "Forest of the Dead":
- Remember to recycle your paper, or your shadow will eat you.
- Remember to back up your data, or a computer will eff up your face.
- Special Edition Title: Of a sort. While it's possibly just a holdover from when he was on YouTube, he doesn't use his theme for a number of TNG's more dramatic episodes such as "The Measure of a Man", "Pen Pals", "Sarek" and "The Best of Both Worlds, parts 1 & 2", opting instead to open with a scene from the episode in question to set up the weight of the subject.
- "Emanations" (VOY) was his first YouTube review, and when it came time to remake the video for Blip.tv (it was one of the last Star Trek reviews to be remade), Chuck made a special intro montage to celebrate all of his Voyager reviews up to that point. The intro sequence starts as normal, but then the music stops and the video begins to reverse. The music is then replaced with AC/DC's "Highway to Hell", over video that is simply comprised of all of Chuck's VOY reviews, back to back, strongly Undercranked, and played in reverse, with a few choice cuts (such as Tuvok strangling Neelix) superimposed over parts of the montage.
- Spell My Name with a "The": He claims that the real reason why the Prophets call Ben Sisko "The Sisko" is his memetic badassness.
- Spoiler Title: Among its many other faults, he calls out the Voyager episode "Memorial" for having one, as most of the story is a mystery about what's screwing with the crew's heads.
- Spoof Aesop: Unrequited love is tragedy. ...Unless it leads to rampant sexual harassment, then it becomes comedy! ("Fascination")
- Well, I hope you girls have learned a valuable lesson: If you want to succeed, all you have to do is be superficial, put down your own gender, and take off your clothes, and the world is your oyster! ("Profit and Lace")
- He had a nice chortle over Etta Candy tut-tutting Wonder Woman for uttering a vulgarity. This, coming off the heels of Diana torturing a perp in a previous clip."Remember kids: When you get mad, don't swear; get violent!"
- In "These Are the Voyages..." we learn the following: coming to terms with a miscarriage and the breakup of your relationship is not important. What is important is spying on said personal lives from the future. (Riker even joins in the firefight without bothering to save Trip, causing Chuck to observe that it's turned into Call of Duty: Ghost of the Franchise.)
- Spoonerism: Seven getting bombed on synthehol at a party in "Timeless".(slurring) "Ah'm Borrrg you—dammit! Prepare to be stimulated! Feudalism is resilience!"
- Scotty's mind seems to be... "elsewhere" in Wrath of Khan.Scotty: (carrying Preston) He's badly hurt, so I brought him up here to Sick Bay!
Kirk: This... this is the Bridge, Scotty.
Scotty: And then I'm headin' back down to finish drinkin' the engines! ...I-I mean, repairing the scotch! Er...crap..
- Scotty's mind seems to be... "elsewhere" in Wrath of Khan.
- Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Terl became this a result of John Travolta's ego. Chuck states that Travolta was originally planned to be the hero of the film, but admitted he had gotten to old and out of shape for it, but wasn't too humble to still not have most of the focus of the film be on him, resulting in significant portions of it being written to allow him to chew the scenery.
- Spot the Thread: In his "Unreality" month where he reviewed episodes where reality and fantasy were warping into one another, he finds a common theme. "You may have thought you could fool us, hallucination, but you make the same mistake all the other hallucinations have made. You made Chakotay too lifelike, a dead giveaway!"
- Springtime for Hitler: Discussed in a couple of reviews:
- Chuck theorizes that putting Kenneth Biller in charge of season 7 of Voyager was Rick Berman's attempt at this.
- Chuck wonders if this was the case with Battlefield Earth, given the massive number of cut corners and embezzlement in the production of the film.
- Square Race, Round Class: In Star Wars: The Old Republic, he played a Miraluka Imperial Agent, meaning that the character was a blind force-sensitive character who used guns note who even took the Sniper specialization. The character's justification was that he wanted to avoid getting sent to the Sith Academy in Korriban so he passed himself off as a normal human with prosthetics.
- Status Quo Is God: For the times when Voyager doesn't even bother with the Reset Button. To mention one example, the episode "The Could" started off with the Voyager's replicators running low on... whatever it is that powers them. By the end of the episode they hadn't managed to get them refilled, yet in the next episode the replicators were used frivolously like the shortage never happened.
- Stealth Insult: Much chortling over the selection of Janeway as the only officer fit to pose as a galaxy-ruling Hive Queen, even edging out Seven, who has actual experience serving as same! ("Bride of Chaotica")Tom: He's a meglomaniac, so it's a good idea to appeal to his ego.
Janeway: Heheh! So clueless! ...Uhh tell me again why I'm the only one awesome enough to pull this off?
- The Stinger: In traditional MST3K fashion, playing a funny clip from the episode at the end. Voyager reviews are the exception, always ending on this exchange from The Thaw.The Clown: I'm afraid.
Janeway: I knooooow.
- The Stoic: Chakotay is interpreted as "half Native American, half tree" as a gag on Robert Beltran's sometimes wooden acting.
- Strawman Has a Point: A rich, gold-filled in-universe vein of snark for his reviews of Star Trek episodes. SF Debris is able to spot these from a mile away.
- So when Bruce Maddox of the Next Generation episode "The Measure of a Man" wasn't this trope, he made sure to point it out."Normally in the Opinionated Guides, we defend the assholes, douchebags, and general antagonists when, objectively speaking, their behavior is understandable given the collection of starry-eyed, clicky, sugar-coated dogmatic zealots that they wind up going up against. But there is no defending [Bruce Maddox]."
- Believes that Seska's reasons for wanting to forge an alliance with the Kazon, for protection and backup in a region of hostile space, are incredibly pragmatic.
- The Unaired Wonder Woman pilot has the characters who fight for due process as sleazy criminals or people in the pocket of sleazy criminals. Much better to have a short-tempered, impulsive, violent super-woman who holds such concepts in contempt and is immune to prosecution ferret things out.
- While reviewing Torchwood: Miracle Day, he points out that Jane Espenson's episodes tend to contrast with points explicitly made earlier - while the Catholic belief in the unborn is mocked, the Miracle's parameters lend credence to the idea that life starts at conception, and while a member of the Tea Party is presented as a fringe zealot, the next episode shows a form of "death panels" being used to determine who lives and who's annihilated. While Chuck is neither Catholic nor a Tea Partier, he has to question how effective a work's message is when the quick jibes are utterly contrasted by future events.
- Praised "Chain of Command," in how they played with this. While you're not supposed to like Jelico and want Picard to come back, the man makes very good points and some defendable decisions, and isn't an insane admiral making wrong or stupid ones for the sake of drama. Chuck goes into the positives and negatives of some of his decisions, and even states that the fans who didn't like Jelico tended to still like his decision to make Troi wear a uniform instead of the fanservice-y outfits.
- So when Bruce Maddox of the Next Generation episode "The Measure of a Man" wasn't this trope, he made sure to point it out.
- Stealth Pun: In the "Body and Soul," he describes pon farr as "the need to do the Vulcan salute without the ring finger." Which would look a little something like this.
- Stockholm Syndrome: Suggests that Kes might have a form of this, theorising that as usual, Neelix simply forced himself into the unwanted position of "boyfriend" and eventually Kes just gave up trying to tell him to take a hike.
- Considers the villagers refusal to leave at the end of "Paradise" to be proof that they are suffering this, after years of torture and indoctrination at the hands of a mad despot.
- Why the people put up with Wonder Woman's actions."She pushes to be given time alone with this fellow that she actually put in the hospital in the first place, yeah, that doesn't sound like a bad idea at all. But the detective, for some reason, decides to go along with it, because, well, nobody can say no to Wonder Woman. Or at the very least, no one dares to say no to Wonder Woman."
- Stupid Evil: This is his main complaint about the Mirror Universe episodes of Enterprise; everyone's so busy backstabbing each other that it's a wonder anything gets done.
- The Borg Queen in "Unimatrix Zero", since it portrays her as a laughably incompetent villain.
- Darth Malak from Knights Of The Old Republic gets this for his laughably incompetent, over-the-top Salt The Earth tactics, as well as sending legions of droids to kill a man... who has a power that is labeled, quite literally, "Destroy Droid."
- Similarly, Darth Zhorrid of the Imperial Agent storyline in SWTOR is also mocked for being a psychotic idiot who frequently interferes with Rex-Dart's work for her own petty purposes. She's even contrasted with her father Darth Jadus, who is insane due to his obsession with the democratization of fear but otherwise a legitimate threat in his own right as well as competent and sane Sith such as Darth Marr and Lana Beniko.
- In "The Rise and Fall of the Comic Empire", he says that Marvel Comics' management "combined the evil of Darth Vader with the coordination of Laurel and Hardy".
- Subverted Rhyme Every Occasion: Used in the Dragon Age: Origins review:Oh hear me speak, oh rhyming tree /
Your poet's speech is killing me /
So, pardon me if I seem blunt /
But knock it off, you stupid... jerk.
- Suckiness Is Painful: In Comic History 8, he puts forward the idea that Rob Liefeld put forth a comic so bad that it actually gave Marvel Comics editor Mark Gruenwald, a non-smoker and a health nut, a fatal heart attack.
- Suddenly Always Knew That: A Running Gag with Chakotay.
- Superior Species: Chuck references this trope in his review of Insurrection regarding the Ba'ku:Chuck: You know what these people are? They're elves. [They're] smarter, in tune with nature, have greater gifts, live forever, and are white.
- Surrounded by Idiots: He's very quick to note that, among the Predacons, Megatron is the only one with even a shred of foresight or common sense, describing the rank and file of their faction as a " ...bunch of yahoos" barely kept pointed in something vaguely resembling the right direction by their eternally suffering boss.Blackarachnia: It's probably what they're after... I'll destroy it!Megatron: NO!Chuck: I get the feeling that Megatron has a conversation with his minions along these lines at least once a day.
- Suspiciously Specific Denial: Janeway's reputation in the Delta Quadrant precedes her — even in holographic simulations. (Living Witness)Janeway: (speaking too soon) I didn't do it. Except for the stuff that sounds good, that I did the hell out of!
- She accidentally blurted out the existence of "Kes-kotay" when Chakotay made an offhand remark in "Dark Frontier". She then protests that there's "only one", so if Chakotay kills it, then that constitutes genocide/suicide!
- When Seven comes looking for answers in the mess hall, Neelix automatically ducks under the counter and cries, " I swear that lice didn't come from me!" ("The Voyager Conspiracy")Neelix: O-of course, I meant that they came from my spice, and are completely unrelated to my scalp condition. Uh, powdered donut?
- Swiss Cheese Security: Chuck often pokes fun at how terrible Starfleet's security measures are. To mention a few examples:
- In TNG episode "Brothers" Data takes command of the Enterprise in part by perfectly mimicking Picard's voiceprint. Wesley did the exact same back in the first season, and apparently nobody has plugged this hole in security since.
- In DS9 episode "Defiant" Riker's transporter accident-born twin shows up posing as him, and steals the titular vessel. Chuck points out that while Starfleet is completely aware of this other Riker's existence, they have taken absolutely no actions to help prevent one posing as the other. Even Chuck's Dukat character gets in on it, pointing out that this would be pretty terrible if their foes were creatures who could perfectly mimic both voice and physical form... such as Changelings. Which (through their empire, the Dominion), are the primary reason the Defiant was brought to Deep Space Nine.
- The subject comes up in the DS9 episode "Bar Association", when Worf goes to complain about a break-in in his quarters to Odo.Odo: Unfortunately, these things happen.
Worf: They did NOT happen on the Enterprise!
(Odo devilishly grins as he pulls up a list of incidents as chronicled in TNG on a PADD)
Chuck: Yeah, you just set yourself up for this, Worf. Do you want them chronologically, or just alphabetically?
- For a subversion, in TNG episode "Chain of Command" Starfleet actually taking basic steps to help maintain security after Picard is captured utterly astounds Chuck."Holy crap, you would have changed his access codes? You really are the most competent officer in Starfleet! Next thing you know, you'll be handing out guns that actually work!"
- Take a Third Option: Neelix gives us the chestnut of "When the road before you splits into two, take the third path." Chuck responds, "The third path...would be back the way you came."
- Blames Voyager for abusing this trope by repeatedly putting the crew in a moral dilemma with two valid but questionable solutions - and then presents a third option which renders all the preceding moral contemplations and discussions moot.
- Hilariously done in The Matrix review. Neo finds several alternatives for the choice between 'blue or red pill'. "Do you have a green pill? Orange? Yellow? Can I take both?"
- In TNG: Haven Chuck declares that if he were trapped in a room with Lwaxana Troi, Neelix and Okona and had a gun with only two bullets, he would shoot himself. He also gets on Picard's case for the same reason he gets on Voyager's case- Picard pulls a third option out of nowhere that instantly solves the Plague Ship issue, without even hinting at said option earlier, giving the impression that everyone on the planet was completely screwed.
- Take That, Audience!: "Masks": "What does it feel like...when a person is losing his mind?"Chuck: In my experience, the first impulse is to start forwarding irrelevant shit to my email.
- Following his review of TMP, Chuck pauses in the middle of the other TOS films to describe the hate mail he's getting lately. Some die-hards criticized him for using profanity in the review — curse words that are later used by Kirk himself in Star Trek V."Apparently, if you like TMP, you didn't watch any more Trek films."
- In "Past Tense" he says that he hates reviewing "message" episodes, since it inevitably results in him simultaneously being accused of being a hippie, a warhawk, and a wimpy centrist.
- Following his review of TMP, Chuck pauses in the middle of the other TOS films to describe the hate mail he's getting lately. Some die-hards criticized him for using profanity in the review — curse words that are later used by Kirk himself in Star Trek V.
- Take That Me: Jokes in his review of "Rose" that Clive's obsession with the Doctor has caused even Clive's own family to think he's an internet lunatic.Chuck: Poor people, having to put up with this hobby taking over... *yells offscreen* Get out! I told you, I am NOT playing, I am working!
- The end-episode caption for First Contact compared the film to "My Prom Date; Stupid But Fun"
- In "Blood Oath" he mentions that the titular blood oath has been going on for 80 years "which is also the time it takes for me to respond to an email".
- A particularly arbitrary Stupid Neelix Moment in "The Swarm." Rather than a clip of the episode playing us out, we instead see footage from "What's Opera, Doc?◊"
- Gattica - Can we afford to feed, clothes and house hundreds of thousands of people with inferior genes, who "do nothing but complain about Star Trek all day"? Food for thought!
- Taking You with Me: Duly notes that Neelix - who was indignant at being told to wear a safety harness earlier (expert climber that he is) - immediately grabs onto Torres' legs when he takes a tumble, nearly killing both of them.
- Talk Like a Pirate: Has recently become an increasingly-common gag.
- "Rocks and Shoals" (DS9) has the first example of this, when Keevan the Vorta opens a box of Ketracel White only to discover there's only one vial left.
- In the Twin Peaks review, Chuck's voice for Nadine is always this because... she has an eyepatch. Seems legit.
- In "Brothers" (TNG), when Data hijacks the ship.Chuck: A wee bit o' piracy, yarrrr!
- Later in the same episode he is referred to as "Gold-face the Pirate, yarrrr!"
- And finally, Chuck refers to Tasha Yarrrrr!
- A bartender lady wearing an eye-patch in the Blade Runner review serves Deckard a drink.Chuck: Made it with me'own urine, yarrr!
- The Tape Knew You Would Say That: "Author, Author", which features a Holonovel that Chuck wryly describes as "What happens if you watch my show and then try to write a Voyager episode".Doctor: As far as I know, Captain, you haven't executed any of my patients. (cut to Tuvix being killed)
- The term "black holes" falls out of usage by the time Will Decker mentions them in The Motion Picture. ...Except amongst Ferengi, Vulcans, Trills, Data, and Q. Ahem.
- In "Death Wish", Janeway lauds Q for his honesty. This calls for a Stupid Statement Dance Mix, Fleetwood Mac-style!Q: I think you've uncovered my one redeeming virtue.
- "Up the Long Ladder" juxtaposes alien refugees being reduced to breeding stock (which is played for laughs) with the Borg essentially doing the same thing to the Enterprise a year later.Chuck: Huh, I guess I got that backward.
- Taught by Television: We slag off on Harry Kim's complete ignorance of history, but his crew mates aren't much better. Witness the Doctor's summary of World War II in "The Killing Game" Pt. 2.
- Teach Him Anger: Chuck points out a scene in "The Descent" (TNG) where Data comes into Troi's office with unsolved rage issues, only for Troi to encourage him to explore his rage further. Unsurprisingly, much like Troi's other endeavors, this results in complete disaster.
- Technobabble: The secret is to take two scientific terms and mash them together, even if you don't know what they mean. He then gives some examples, while stating what they actually would be.
- Chuck (about the phrase "hull plating offline"): "...IT'S BROKEN! It's ARMOR! You BROKE it! IT'S GONE!"
- A Berserk Button of his seems to be pressed when Voyager's Technobabble isn't even consistent with itself, which unfortunately happens a lot.
- He also goes out on a limb and says that Technobabble goes against basic good television if you lean too heavily on it.
- Tempting Fate: On Star Trek: The Motion Picture:"They've clearly gone out of their way with all this stuff to not have that sixties-era feel to it, instead be a timeless piece of— [cue Bones, with a full beard and wearing a giant medallion over his all-white Jedi robe] —the hell??!
- Aeryn Sun cranking up the Aurora Chair to eleven, leaving Crais screaming in agony. "Ouch," Chuck winces, "I really can't imagine anything worse."[cut to Chiana & Rygel behind a steamed porthole, with Rygel's hand pressed against the glass]
"''AAUUUGH—!!' Damn my imagination!"
- His response to a homeless bum settling a dispute over stolen bread... by breaking the bread in half. ("Daleks in Manhattan")Chuck: That's brilliant justice, taking a page from Solomon there! Who are you?
Bum #1: I'm starvin', Solomon!
Chuck: oh, this is gonna be a long day.
- In "The Wire," Garak gives Bashir a new book about the Klingons and Cardassians being at war with each other.Chuck: Bah! Like THAT is ever gonna happen!
- This bit from "A Night in Sickbay"Chuck: So far, we've had the fart joke, the pee joke, the Decon Chamber erotica, and we're not even though the first act yet. What next, more water polo?! (cuts to a scene featuring a water polo game) This...is the worst Christmas ever.
- Aeryn Sun cranking up the Aurora Chair to eleven, leaving Crais screaming in agony. "Ouch," Chuck winces, "I really can't imagine anything worse."
- Testosterone Poisoning: When Sisko, Spock and Kirk were in the same frame in "Trials and Tribble-ations" Chuck claims that his computer froze up and nearly broke as though it sensed the sheer awesomeness of that situation.
- That One Rule: "Persistence of Vision": A vision of his disapproving father asks Tom Paris several questions, which Tom successfully answers, until he asks him to explain the Leg Before Wicket rule.
- Theme Song: One for every series, and one for the movies, most of them being Real Song Theme Tunes (though Red Dwarf, Babylon 5, Battlestar Galactica (2003), Flash Gordon, The X-Filesnote , Transformers cartoonsnote , and Ghost In The Shell Standalone Complex use their own respective themes, Puella Magi Madoka Magica and Kannazukino Miko use their ending themes, "Magia" and "Agony" respectively, and Ghost in the Shell, oddly enough, has no theme song), generally dating from the same era, and usually with some thematic connection to their respective series:
- TOS: "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" as covered by, of course, William Shatner.
- TNG: "99 Red Balloons" by Nenanote ".
- Chuck used "Harleys and Indians (Riders in the Sky)" on the last few TNG reviews that were posted to YouTube, after they started disabling the audio on some of the TNG videos with "99 Red Balloons."
- The episode "Up the Long Ladder" used "Funky Ceili" by Black 47, thanks to the plot point about the Irish stereotypes on the Enterprise.
- The episode "Skin of Evil" used "Knockin' on Heaven's Door" by Bob Dylan in tribute to Tasha Yar's death.
- When reviewing "Darmok", an episode about overcoming a language barrier, he uses the original German "99 Luftballons".
- Substituted with Ray Parker's "Ghostbusters" for the energy vampire episode, "Sub Rosa".
- Deep Space Nine: "The Mystic's Dream" by Loreena McKennitt.
- Voyager: "Harleys and Indians (Riders in the Sky)" by Roxette.
- In an attempt to lend some dramatic weight to "Basics" Pt 2. opened with "Bonnie Portmore" by Loreena McKennitt. Part 3 opened with instrumentals apparently taken from Battlestar Galactica.
- And for kicks, he opened Voyager's "Death Wish" with Janeway saying Q isn't a liar, then showing all the times Q lied (or was said to be a liar), set to Fleetwood Mac's "Little Lies". (See also, The Tape Knew You Would Say That)
- Aptly enough, "Highway to Hell" by AC/DC, to commemorate his fifth anniversary ("Emanations"). It starts off with the standard "Harleys and Indians (Riders in the Sky)", but only for about a second.
- "Fair Haven"'s companion video, Holograms and Ethics, opened with a Vitamin String Quartet tribute to "Back in Black". This may be a call back to Blade Runner below.
- "Blink of an Eye" uses Pat Benatar's "Heartbreaker" as the Voyager is referred to as "the Ground Shaker, the Light Bringer!"
- "Barge of the Dead" closed with "Inline Skates" by German band Funny Fux, apparently so awful that Chuck expects it to play at the gates of Hell.
- Enterprise: "Kryptonite" by 3 Doors Down. Back when he was on YouTube, Chuck once mentioned that he picked it because a song about Superman going insane seemed to fit Archer. It's also a reference to a scene wherein Archer randomly hops down from a catwalk looking like Superman landing.
- The second episode of "Through A Mirror Darkly" plays it backwards to support the dark-mirror theme.
- Trek Movies: "It's A Jungle Out There" by Randy Newman. (♪ You better pay attention, cause this world we love so much might - just - kill - you.... ♪)
- The bumper music for Star Trek V was "What If God Was One of Us?", in reference to Shatner finding God in...himself?Kirk: That's right boys, I'm God. Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair! Mwu ha ha.
- Though for Nemesis he switched it with a Shout-Out to Patrick Stewart's speech in Oblivion, complete with its theme music.
- The bumper music for Star Trek V was "What If God Was One of Us?", in reference to Shatner finding God in...himself?
- TAS: "Layla" by Derek and the Dominos.
- Discovery: "Sign of the Times" by Harry Styles
- Doctor Who: "Good Lovin'", though a variation of the Doctor Who theme played during the Cyberman episodes from The Moonbase.
- "Good Lovin'" is also the Real Song Theme Tune from the old sitcom Doctor Doctor. Chuck's opening video even seems to be inspired by the show's credits (seen here).
- For the 50th Anniversary, and as of his review of The End of the World, the theme changed to a theme remix by Grubbo.
- For his Doctor Who? speculation video, "Devil Inside" by INXS
- For his review of The Day of the Doctor, he used "Dust in the Wind" by Kansas
- Night of the Comet: "I Think We're Alone Now" by Tiffany.
- Sunshine: "I Can See Clearly Now" by Jimmy Cliff
- The Dark Knight: "All Along The Watchtower" by Jimi Hendrix
- Farscape: "Adiemus" by Karl Jenkins. The choral bits and almost tribal, mystical sound of the song make it a perfect fit.
- The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers: "People Ain't No Good", performed by Nick Cave.
- Mass Effect - "Don't Fear the Reaper" by Blue Öyster Cult, since the main villains of the franchise are called Reapers.
- Twin Peaks: "Way Back Home" by Bing Crosby.
- My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: "The Sound of Silence" by Simon & Garfunkel.
- For the trailer, "Hero" by Nickelback. Wait, wait, come back, it works!
- Firefly: "Ride the Wind" by Poison.
- Blade Runner: "Who Made Who" by AC/DC.
- Threshold: "The Times They Are A-Changin'" by Bob Dylan.
- The Man from Earth: What else? "Who Wants to Live Forever?" by Queen!note
- Alien: "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" from Dead Space.
- Repo! The Genetic Opera: "One Night In Bangkok" from Chess, as performed by Murray Head.
- Howard the Duck: "Loser" by Beck.
- Rebuild of Evangelion: "Eve of Destruction" by Barry McGuire.
- The Day After: "The Man Comes Around" by Johnny Cash
- Hogfather: Gets two, "The Old Ways" by Loreena McKinnet and "Baba Yetu" by Christopher Tin.
- Stargate: "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" (Which doubles a nice bonus as Stargate SG-1 would often reference The Wizard of Oz and even outright spoof it in one episode). Tv-show reviews originally also used this, before being dropped and replaced with the SG-1 theme.
- His 5th anniversary Clip Show kicks off with the Discovery Channel's "I Love the world", with characters from all of the aforementioned recaps singing along.Londo: I love to take a drink!
Sisko: I love to hit things
Data: I love my lifeforms
Worf: I hate when Data sings
- WALLE: "I Like To Move It" by Real 2 Real, a reference to Wall-E's assigned task on Earth.
- Wonder Woman: "Thank Heaven For Little Girls" from Gigi, sung by Maurice Chevalier (who might have recanted, had he seen this show).
- All-Star Superman: "Superman (It's Not Easy)" by Five For Fighting.
- Torchwood: Miracle Day: Mix between Pandora's Music Box and Lullaby, both by Nox Arcana.
- Dark City: "Don't Dream It's Over" by Crowded House (director Alex Proyas also directed the music video for this song, and they share certain themes)
- Mobile Suit Gundam 0080: War in the Pocket: "Mr. Roboto" by Styx
- The Godzilla films: "Big in Japan" by Alphaville.
- Transformers and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen: "Panama" by Van Halen.
- Galaxy Quest: "Never Surrender" by Corey Hart, partially due to this being the Catchphrase of one of the characters.
- World War Z: "The Trooper" by Iron Maiden
- A New Hope: "The Rebel Fleet/End Titles" from The Empire Strikes Back
- There Is No Kill Like Overkill:
- He describes SG-1's iris like this: bad guys travel at beyond lightspeed to smash into a titanium wall.(The sounds of Jaffas smashing into the Iris as they come out the Stargate, then the gate shuts down)
Walter: Wormhole disengaged.
Chuck: Someone bring a hose. A really big hose!
- Averted in his The Day After review, where he describes the effects of a nuke detonating as being "such a level of overkill it would be funny if it wasn't so sad. This is like killing a daddy longlegs with a stick of dynamite."
- He describes SG-1's iris like this: bad guys travel at beyond lightspeed to smash into a titanium wall.
- They Plotted a Perfectly Good Waste: Suggested that, since Q leaving VOY stranded is such a blatant plot hole, the series might as well have ended with Q just snapping his fingers and sending them home. ("Q2"). It makes about as much sense as a Borg transwarp tunnel which the Queen never got around to using.
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
- Chuck suggests many avenues in which characters could have developed, particularly characters that did not receive any development during the course of the shows.
- In a video dedicated entirely to Kes, he theorizes that had her character arc been better planned out, she could have been an effective "River from Firefly" type character. He also thinks TPTB removing Kes when they did was a waste of Torres, as this could have created an interesting love triangle between Tom/B'Elann/Kes. Even more so that in "Year of Hell" where her knowledge of the future from "Before and After" could come into play, would she hesitate in warning B'Elanna to step away from the console that was going to kill her?
- Chuck repeatedly mentions that Seven of Nine was a great character who was wasted in Voyager and suggests that instead of being forced to have Humanity thrust upon her, she could have remained as a Borg for her first season and slowly come to embrace humanity, which would have given her far more depth to her character development.
- He then went on to make her the hero in his Crossover fanfic The Unity Saga... and promptly wasted her, as she was acting for two novels and a half as a borderline suicidal lunatic. Constantly switching back and forth between Borg mode and Human mode also turned out to be a very bad idea.
- A more minor example: In the alternate script for "Endgame" that he whipped up on the fly, Chuck suggested bringing back Susperia (the Caretaker's ex-girlfriend) as a prisoner of the Borg Collective, which is slowly overcoming her defenses and is well on its way to assimilating an all-powerful lifeform. In gratitude for the VOY crew releasing her from captivity, Susperia repairs one of the remaining Arrays and catapults them back to Earth.
- In his review of Star Trek (2009) he points out that Nero was far more fleshed-out and sympathetic in the comic book tie-in to the film. He points out Nero could have been the most compelling Trek villain since Khan, and gives a chilling monologue regarding the villain's motivations, finishing with a lament that instead of an effective villain, Nero's lack of on-screen development put him across as some "emo with a trident."
- In his review of "Non Sequitur," he points out a way the episode could have been infinitely more compelling and developed Harry Kim's character - instead of having him fight being planted in a branching timeline from the very start, have him go with it, tell the truth to everyone who thinks he's acting so weird, and only have him consider going back to Voyager after he learns that his inaction in this timeline resulted in Paris' death.
- Suggests that if "Year of Hell" had been a full season arc as they had planned, Harry Kim should have been the only one to remember those events after the Reset Button, leaving him as the battle-hardened veteran of a year that never was. This would have allowed the audience to see Harry trying to adjust to a Voyager he's now a stranger on, as well as his difficulty dealing with the lost friends and colleagues that he'd mourned, alive and well again.
- And yet again on Harry Kim, Chuck notes that in a handful of episodes (for example "Demon" and "The Killing Game") Harry is a likable character when the script actually infuses him with a spine.
- In "Bliss," he says he likes Qatai, noting that W. Morgan Sheppard gives a performance that elevates him from a forgettable bit character and wonders if he couldn't have replaced Neelix, since a grizzled aloof outsider native to a strange region of space was what Neelix's character was supposed to be before the writer's turned him into odious comic relief. He suggests that Neelix could have performed a Heroic Sacrifice to kill the creature and his place could have been filled with Qatai, who with the death of the creature and nothing to go back home to, now had a reason to join the crew.
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Ending!: In "Waltz", Chuck joined the consensus of fans who believed Gul Dukat's tragic fall was complete and that he should have died on that planet, rather than being re-animated into a soap opera villain a la Stefano DeMira for the remainder of the show's run.
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Race!: In his review of "Acquisition" he notes how for a fleeting moment the episode manages to make the Ferengi look truly intimidating, and muses about how things might have turned out if that had always been the case with them.
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Director!: When reviewing the episode Timeless, he talks about how great LeVar Burton was at directing this episode, how he worked with the actors to get them to give their best performance, and laments how utterly screwed he got when the higher-ups decided to hand the reins of Star Trek: Nemesis over to Stuart Baird.
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: One of his major peeves against Voyager, as he often points out where it actually has some good, original ideas, but utterly fails to do anything worthwhile with them, such as in "Alliances" or "Waking Moments". Generally, the show was content to coast off fumes and market its hackneyed writing as Camp. Best summed up in his re-upload of "The 37's", he says that rather than hating Voyager, he's only disappointed that the writers never bothered to take advantage of any of the opportunities they had.
- He points out in his review of "Scorpion," one of the show's best regarded episodes, that a major reason it works so well is that, with its emphasis on the incredible danger faced by a lone Starfleet ship in hostile territory and serious disagreements between the crew members, it's what the entire show was supposed to be like.
- In another review, he flat-out says that Voyager is "Where potential goes to die".
- Virtually all Trek end-season cliffhangers cause him great confusion. It's long been Trek policy for the departing writer to write a 100% no-win scenario for our heroes, then leave the mess for somebody else to resolve next year. It got to the point where the recurrence of a prop in "Equinox Pt. 3" left Chuck utterly floored."One piece of info they dropped in the first part that they actually wound up using! Believe me, no one was more surprised than I!"
- He claims in his review that a key difference between So Bad, It's Good and just being bad is that the latter embodies this trope.
- His big complaint in Basics is this, especially since it's obvious he enjoyed some parts of it, but that it eventually transformed in yet another "planet of the week".
- He brings this up again in The 37s, where he lays out all the interesting elements of the episode...none of which have been put to good use. Amelia Earhart on a planet in the Delta Quadrant full of displaced humans would have been a very tempting crisis for the crew to face dramatically, with Earhart herself being such a beacon of charisma and leadership that she could wind up unintentionally dividing the crew in two. He also notes that, since it wouldn't make any sense that a civilization with the ability to drag in humans all the way from the Alpha Quadrant could possibly be completely wiped out by them, it would be a possibility that the aliens had simply lost track of that particular settlement, and the Voyager crew waking up the 37's could have alerted them, forcing a confrontation between Voyager and a new, potentially very powerful opponent. Chuck says the whole episode feels like the set-up for a two-parter that never got its second part.
- "The Void" features Voyager being pulled in by an unknown force and trapped in a hostile region of space, the crew forced to make alliances with unsavory characters in order to survive and all the while dealing with their dwindling resources and power. Chuck points out that after 6 years and a dozen episodes from the finale, the writers of Voyager finally seemed to realise the premise of the entire show!
- An inversion of sorts: In response to a bogus rumor that Edward James Olmos was considered for the part of Janeway, Chuck ruminates that we'd see "a lot more of Neelix being bludgeoned with a flashlight, so that's one serious loss we've suffered." The VOY premiere would have doubled as the Series Finale, with the crew getting home immediately after throwing the Kazons Out the Airlock.
- According to him, it would have taken very little to make "These Are the Voyages..." a proper tribute to each show in the franchise. For one, actually seeing Archer's galaxy-unifying speech which inspires Riker. Or, failing that, having Riker echoing Archer's words to illustrate the long chain of Starfleet heritage. Or, at the very least, having Riker converse with Archer and not a random smattering of crewmen below decks. As it stands, both worlds seems to stand apart, with virtually no traffic between TNG and ENT (beyond a sentence or two of lip service) and making it all the more easy to disregard ENT in the canon.
- Star Trek: Insurrection revolves around an attempt by the Federation to underhandedly appropriate a planet that magically heals sick and wounded people. Given the stardate reported during the movie, this plot takes place during the events of the Dominion War, when the Federation is being badly battered by a rival space empire. Chuck points out how unlikely it is that Worf (or, for that matter, Riker or Geordi, whose blindness was cured by said planet) would pass up such an advantage during wartime, when this planet could help turn the tide and possibly prevent the destruction of the Federation. The film logically should have shown the crew split into two — with Picard and the Prime Directive enthusiasts on one side, and Riker and the war-hardened pragmatists on the other — each group trying to outwit the other.
- He speculates in his review of "Out of Gas" what could the creators have done with the universe and the characters of ''Firefly if the show hadn't been cancelled.
- Incidentally, he mentions it in his reviews of Stargate, combining it with Tropes Are Not Bad: The potential of the Stargate, and its world changing implications had not been really explored by the movie, and he credits this as why Stargate SG-1 succeeded where many series based on films died: Because this huge element was untouched by the movie, it left the door wide open for the series to do so.
- He suggests that in the 2011 Wonder Woman pilot, a better plot would have been Diana Prince (as a separate character) acting in the shadows to do the right thing while the Knight Templar Wonder Woman is a gloryhound and monster worshipped by the city. When that Wonder Woman is done in by her own hubris, Diana steps up to thwart the villain and take her place and live up to the actual ideals of Wonder Woman rather than the monster she has been.
- He has also repeatedly stated that he considers the Star Trek: Enterprise, Temporal Cold War arc, to be a waste of potential as it really went nowhere and was resolved too easily. In his review of Enterprise episode "Cold Front" he gives his own version of the storyline which is that the Vulcans knew about the War and the reason why they were spying on the Andorians is because they were afraid that the Sulibans were infiltrating their ranks, and that they tried to slow down humanity's development to keep them out of it only for them to accidentally stumble onto it, and that eventually Archer would have to sacrifice the very existence of his Enterprise to ensure the Federation comes to existence even though no one will remember them at all. This would've explained away the uncharacteristic behaviour the Vulcans had in the early Enterprise episodes as well as why the events of this series were never referenced in any of the other series.
- Believes that Braga was right to want to have an entire season of Voyager dedicated to the "Year of Hell", instead of a two-parter with a rather lame Reset Button that rendered all of the events meaningless.
- Hes noted that "Jetrel" fails to go into deeper specifics regarding the war between the Talaxians and the Haakonians, missing some potentially good character moments. For instance, he theorizes that the Talaxians were the aggressors in the war and the Haakonians used the cascade in a last-ditch effort to avoid total defeat.
- He also expresses his dissatisfaction with Voyager's finale "Endgame" for taking two elements (time travel and the Borg) that could've made for a great finale and failing to do anything good with them, leading him (much like in his "Cold Front" review) to tell his own version of the ending which includes a future where Voyager does indeed return home but the Borg, having assimilated the second caretaker and her powers, have launched a full scale invasion of the Federation and have assimilated Vulcan and Earth. The surviving Voyager crew propose a plan to use captured Borg time travel technology to send a probe containing all the information and equipment Past!Voyager in the Delta Quadrant would need to prevent this future from occurring and in the process of altering history results in causing the Temporal Cold War that Enterprise would have to deal with.
- He pointed out the major plot hole of "Flesh and Blood," in which Voyager finds Hirogen using the holodeck tech they had given them...some thirty thousand lightyears from where that tech was given. The obvious solution to this is Voyager coming across an unstable wormhole that takes them deeper into the Delta Quadrant, not changing any of the dilemmas present in the episode, but adding another in which Janeway was decide between helping the Hirogen clean up their mess or using the wormhole before it closes and leaves them worse off than they were before.
- Regarding the Next Generation episode "Attached", he feels that a world without a single government in Star Trek is so interesting a concept on its own in a season known to struggle with coming up with fresh new ideas, he wishes the entire episode was spend on it. Nothing about the Picard and Crusher plot really requires it.
- He felt that Qatai should have joined the crew in the Voyager episode "Bliss", with Neelix dying in a vain attempt to escape the pitcher plant creature.
- Like many VOY episodes, he listed all the wasted opportunities of "The 37s", such as the legendary Amelia Earhart potentially causing a schism amongst the crew over wishing to stay and the potential for accidentally alerting the alien slavers to this lost colony. He described the episode as being the setup for a two-parter with no payoff.
- One thing he makes clear in his review of the Doctor Who TV movie is that the presence of Sylvester McCoy was necessary, in order to bring in fans who were skeptical about this film maintaining over twenty years of continuity. However, Chuck states that he would have opened with the Doctor already having regenerated into Paul McGann, with no memory of who he is. During this, the Seventh Doctor would appear as a mysterious mentor who slowly fills him in on his identity. This would tie in to his role as the Chessmaster, having foreseen his coming death and taking steps to ensure he was prepared.
- This is his biggest criticism of Star Trek Into Darkness. The settup could have been one of the best entries in the franchise, but instead they made a completely mindless action flick (and made all of the characters idiots in the process).
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Sandwich: Chuck is taken aback in "Shattered" when Janeway, distracted by an alternate-universe (and dying) Tuvok, sets down an untouched carafe of coffee and steps away from it. Now we know it's serious.
- This Is Gonna Suck: In his review of "Daleks in Manhattan," a character who acts like King Solomon is actually named Solomon causes Chuck to have this reaction.
- Chuck asks, in the first episode of Full Moon, what the anime is going to be like. Cue the opening credits of the anime, intercut with a disgusted/horrified looking Spock and a facepalming Picard, and finished up by Chuck simply going "Oh fuck." And to top it all off, a clip of Galvatron screaming that "This is Bullshit" in Japanese.
- Timey-Wimey Ball: Not a big fan of this trope in Star Trek: First Contact when discussing the Borg using time travel to assimilate Earth and why the good guys don't use it more often. "And before anyone tries to bring the whole parallel reality argument in...don't. If that's true, then it invalidates when it IS used. You can't have it both ways, that the only time that it works just the right way is when the plot says that it's okay and the rest of the time you can't use it. Look, all I ask is that you be consistent with your nonsense, okay?"
- Title Drop: "Why it's...dare I say it...a swarm! Maybe even The Swarm."
- Meta-Title Drop during the review of the Voyager episode Real Life when the crew makes a shocking discovery while attempting to visit a space station.
Chuck: Yes, it's meeee!! You guys are sooooo screeeeewed...
- To The Bat Noun: Chakotay's Sacred [insert noun here].[clutches head] "Agh! I shouldn't have drunk that Sacred Smoothie so quickly!"
- Toilet Humour: Done with the aid of an abrupt cut between two unrelated clips here:Chuck: (on the Q story arc) We've gone through the good (clip of "Q Who?") the bad (clip of "Hide and Q") and the ugly...
Pakled: We look for things. Things that make us go:
Worf: Prune juice, extra large!
- Too Dumb to Live: This is pretty much the modus operandi of the cast on Enterprise. It's rare for an Enterprise review to go without Chuck commenting on at least one Too Dumb to Live moment (Almost always from Archer, with Trip taking most other incidents).
- Of particular note is the instance where Archer engages in some convoluted plan, which involves getting the shit beaten out of him, to figure out where some holes in the wall lead to. This plan is apparently preferred to the simpler plan of... looking through the holes.
- Reaches a head Nemesis, where he points out that the only reason that the Enterprise crew isn't destroyed out of their own stupidity is because Shinzon is even more incompetent.
- Points out that Linnis, Kes' daughter, could quickly tell Kes her brilliant plan to keep her in the present, but instead stands and gawps helplessly while she quantum leaps back in her own timeline. Congratulations Linnis, you now have been responsible for erasing yourself from existence.
- In Blade Runner, he notes how stupid it was to make soldiers out of slaves.
- In "Lifesigns," apparently there are Vidiians who do not have the Phage. Such a medically advanced species has apparently never heard of "quarantine."
- Harry Potter" by refusing to shut up, as revenge for Q's son having used his powers to previously remove both his mouth and vocal chords. Chuck points out the stupidity of taunting a Demigod that will get his powers back in a week. Neelix in "Q2", when he taunts the temporarily depowered "
- The crew of Voyager for assigning their technologically-minded engineers in charge of gathering plants, putting their botanically-minded biochemists in charge of handling medical technology and taking over seven years before they realised they'd assigned an engineer to be their astrophysicist while conversely putting "Carl Sagan in charge of shovelling coal".Chuck: Is it any wonder why these dumbasses are lost?!
- The crew of Voyager for everytime they seem to be taken in by Neelix's claims that he's an "Expert" on something.Chuck: Neelix has conned the crew into thinking he's a survival expert...
- The Psychlos in general. He describes Terl as the smartest and most cunning of Psychlos, which would mean he would generously be considered an imbecile. They only manage to conquer native populations because they have gas drones, robotic nerve-gas dispensers not burdened with an incompetent psychlo brain.
- Whether it's the Enterprise or Voyager, Chuck will always facepalm when someone decides to conduct a dangerous experiment or handle unknown, dangerous material within close proximity of the warp core.
- Took The Bad Episode Seriously: An in-universe Lampshade Hanging. Gives props to Robert Duncan McNeill in "Threshold" who is clearly acting his ass off... while doing so under pulsating head-lung lizard makeup and in an episode so awful that it that actually became Canon Discontinuity.
- Another example from the original series: Chuck praises DeForest Kelley and his ability to deliver the most ridiculous dialogue with utter sincerity in "Spock's Brain".
- Is utterly baffled why Michael Piller so firmly believed "Ex Post Facto" to be good enough to be submitted for Emmy nomination, when it was clear to everyone else involved just how awful the episode was?!
- Token Evil Teammate: His version of Janeway.
- Too Spicy for Yog-Sothoth: Believes that in Unimatrix Zero, the reason the Borg Queen starting blowing up her own ships was because an assimilated Janeway was actually subtly taking control of her.Janeway: Your mistake was assimilating me!
- Training from Hell: Notes that Tuvok's attempts to put the Maquis through their paces in "Learning Curve" makes him come off as a massive jerkass, especially when he makes them run a 10 kilometre lap, with full packs and the gravity turned up 10%.Chuck: A particularly nice sign of dickishness from a man who has over three times the strength of the people he's leading.
- Tranquil Fury: While reviewing the Voyager episode "Real Life," he reveals that his twin sons were born premature and barely survived. Hence, he takes serious issue with the episode's message that people should go through something like that to build character, never raising his voice until the last few words while it's still clear that we're hearing absolute, genuine rage.
- Translation by Volume: In "Darmok" from TNG. He comments on desperate attempts of the Enterprise crew and Captain Picard to communicate with incomprehensible aliens whose language their Universal Translator couldn't crack.Chuck: I'll check [Picard's] academy records. His language course was 203. Let me cross-check that. Oh yes! He's fluent in yelling at people. This is the time honoured method of speaking your own language loudly and somewhat slowly to people who don't speak it, in the hopes that they will suddenly understand you. (beat) The others just laugh at him.
- Translation Train Wreck: In his review of the episode "Tinker, Tenor, Doctor, Spy" he translates the lyrics of "La donna è mobile" using the Babylon 8 translation software resulting in this trope. Apperantly the song is about furniture.
- Trash the Set: In his review of the "Eleventh Hour", he notes that due to the Tenth Doctor's violent regeneration, Eleven can't use the still-rebuilding TARDIS, but at least he still has his ever-faithful sonic screwdriver, right? Cue it promptly exploding.Chuck: Man, when Ten breaks shit, he really breaks shit, doesn't he?
- Tropes Are Not Bad: Chuck mentions this by name when he reviews the TNG episode "Timescape", noting that several of Brannon Braga's scripts begin with the premise "the captain returns to the ship to find things have gone to hell", but that does provide a good mystery setup.
- True Art Is Incomprehensible: Acknowledges this trope when discussing David Lynch and surrealists in general. In his opinion, what separates Lynch from the others is that he doesn't fall into this trope: all of his surreality seems to serve a higher purpose.
- TV Tropes Will Ruin Your Life: Referenced in a review, regarding Unfortunate Implications."Kes comes in to see Tuvok and, after a couple of minutes, Tuvok decides he'll try that plan of Harry's. There's a thing TV Tropes calls Unfortunate Implications, and this seems to apply here: The only thing stopping the black guy and the Asian guy from beating each other up are white women."
- When he finally awarded the first ever 10 to a Voyager episode ("Life Line") the video caption noted to "Alert TV Tropes!" in order to update the entry that would be affected by that score (and which, in light of said review, became obsolete and was subsequently deleted).
- His review of Flash Gordon references a large number of tropes by name, and the general approach to the review is in line with the feel of this website, all the way up to, and including... BRIAN BLESSED!
- In the Stargate review he implored viewers not to tag him with a Did Not Do the Research entry on his supposition that the constellation system for gate co-ordinates didn't make sense because he had no time to scan through all 10 seasons of the TV series for an explanation.
- Twenty Per Cent More Awesome: From his review of Voyager episode "Body And Soul" he uses the unit "Kims" (as in deci-Kims), which is the measure of Harry Kim's sexual trauma applied per cubic meter/second. Not to be confused with a metric-Kim, which is a measurement of personal shame.
- Twofer Token Minority:
- Parodied along with Executive Meddling in his review of "The Naked Now," where one (hypothetical) moronic executive thinks Geordi is wearing the visor because he's gay, making him gay, black, AND blind. Full transcript
- Even funnier, the dumb executive is portrayed by an image of Rick Berman. (The guy who fired Ron Jones. Make of that what you will...)
- During a review of Stargate, Chuck complains that they often won't let a black guy in Speculative Fiction be JUST a black guy, pointing out that they're often black AND an alien, or a robot, or something else non human (the android in "Wormhole X-Treme," Worf, Sisko, Teal'c, etc).
- Typecasting: When Brad Dourif turns up in the X-Files episode "Beyond the Sea", playing a serial killer: "You might remember him from Voyager, where he was a killer. Or Babylon 5, where he was a killer. Or The Lord of the Rings, where he betrayed and then killed people."
- Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny: Comparing the quality of each wiki page's on their universe's references on breasts (Star Wars won). TWICE!
- Undying Loyalty: Suggests that Janeway has slowly brainwashed a sense of this into Tuvok.Janeway: Tuvok! Bring me some coffee!
Tuvok: But Captain, I'm trying to hold this cable to stop the lift with my family in it from plummeting to their—
Janeway: Tuvok! Do you actually expect me to get up and walk over there?
Tuvok: ...No, of course not, Captain. I'm sorry for being selfish.
Janeway: I'll punish you later, coffee now!
- Unfortunate Names:
- The Next Generation writer Melinda Snodgrass, incorrectly referred to by Chuck as "Melissa".
- Chuck can't help but laugh when the "pronunciation" of Chakotay's name by Torres sounds exactly like Chocolate Day.Chuck: CHOCOLATE DAAAAAAAY!
- In his review of "Message in a Bottle," Chuck makes the obligatory joke about guest star Andy Dick."And the EMH is replaced by, well, this Dick."
- Due to the lack of colons in their titles, Chuck is led to think that Star Trek: Insurrection and Star Trek: Nemesis were respectively rebelling against and the enemy of Star Trek. But given the fate of the franchise not long afterwards, he finds them appropriate.
- Unholy Matrimony: In his review of Voyager's "Counterpoint", Janeway falls in love with Kashyk because he too is a brutal oppressor.
- Unishment: In Voyager's "Unimatrix Zero" the Borg Queen disconnects a drone from the Borg hive mind after he refuses to tell her about the titular Unimatrix. Chuck points out that her behaviour is this trope - she has disconnected him from the Borg Collective and given him back his individuality.
- Unperson: He likes to sell the idea that Jonathan Archer was stricken from the history books for being such an embarrassment. Picard actually spat in disgust when his name was mentioned.
- Unstoppable Force Meets Immovable Object: Mentioned in his review of All-Star Superman, where he states his believe that the Unstoppable Force would win, based on the logic that the Immovable Object would either be vaporized, sublimated, ground into nothingness in the case of kinetic force, or, in the case of a gravitational force, be captured. Unless the Object were able to make itself large enough to emit an even greater force, which would still count as a win for the Force, based on the logic that becoming what you're fighting against is a loss.
- Up to Eleven: Chuck has commented that, despite having years to plan and prepare for their year-long mission into space, the madness onboard the NX-01 isn't noticeably different from it's beleaguered counterpart two centuries in the future — the U.S.S. Voyager. Captain Archer proves to be even more unstable and reckless than Janeway, willingly stranding his crew three hundred years from home (as opposed to Janeway's 'mere' 90 years, which was accidental) rather than apologize to alien natives for drowning one of their holy sites in dog piss. ("A Night in Sick Bay")
- In fact, the NX-01 is even more understaffed than Voyager (eighty crew members to VOY's paltry one hundred and fifty), to the degree that Phlox has no nurses to help him and must rope Hoshi Sato, Ph.D into cleaning up vomit in the Sick Bay. (Shades of Tom Paris!) So, what happens if the non-holographic, non-indestructible Doctor gets killed or incapacitated? ("Minefield")"I've heard "Physician, heal thyself", but that probably shouldn't be your ship's official medical policy."
- In fact, the NX-01 is even more understaffed than Voyager (eighty crew members to VOY's paltry one hundred and fifty), to the degree that Phlox has no nurses to help him and must rope Hoshi Sato, Ph.D into cleaning up vomit in the Sick Bay. (Shades of Tom Paris!) So, what happens if the non-holographic, non-indestructible Doctor gets killed or incapacitated? ("Minefield")
- Uriah Gambit: A running gag that Picard almost letting slip that he intentionally sent Jack Crusher to his death so he could get Beverley in the sack.
- Urine Trouble: In "Booby Trap", Wesley poses a hypothetical to Riker which involves spying on girls while they pee, as though there's nothing odd about that.
- "Prototype" opens on a POV camera lens aimed at Torres, angry as usual. Chuck guesses she mistook it for one those webcams Harry keeps hiding in her toilet.
- During "A Night in Sickbay", Chuck keened that if Archer had his way, every "diplomatic mission" would entail peeing on the dignitaries from the safety of his shuttlecraft.
- Values Dissonance: Star Trek may have been Fair for Its Day, but Chuck uncomfortably points out how most of the Star Trek original episodes he's reviewed have been unkind to women (with depictions of them as crazed and emotionally fragile).
- Not to mention legally barred from captaining a starship in the 23rd century. In a story that Gene Roddenberry came up with, so you can't just say it was another writer who didn't understand his vision. This becomes Fridge Logic when Enterpise has a woman as the Captain of the second NX-class ship.
- In "Angel One", Riker defends wearing a skimpy outfit he's been given to wear to meet with the leader of a female-dominated society, stating that it's his duty as a Starfleet officer to respect local customs and traditions. Chuck notes that by that logic, any Ferengi delegation would be completely in their rights to ask for female diplomats to be nude, as is their custom.
- Verbal Tic: He personally acknowledges one of them - prefacing rhetorical questions with the phrase "You might ask" - during his "The Nth Degree" review.
- Viewers Are Morons: Their repeated use of the word "Ancient" to describe anything in Earth's past, which he points out is seemingly done to remind us that this is the future. Because all the starships, aliens and phasers, didn't make it clear to the audience before?!
- Villain Ball:
- He points out the many idiotic things Starling does in the Voyager episode "Future's End". For one, he orders his henchman to kill Rain after she's leaked the possible UFO to the press, even though her sudden death would likely put greater scrutiny on him. He decides to go to the future to get more marketable technology...even though he has downloaded the Doctor and, with him, his vast medical database with cures for countless modern diseases. Craziest of all, his plan is to recover technology from 29th century Earth, and when told that his attempt will destroy 29th century Earth on arrival, he waves it off as an irrelevance!
- Points out in the Mirror Universe Enterprise episode that everyone suffers from Chronic Backstabbing Disorder to the point that most of their problems are a result of it, and marvels at the fact the eventual collapse of their empire comes from reform instability rather than the blatantly self-destructive way it's run.
- Unalaq's entire plan needs Korra to be willing to do what he wants her to. So, under the claim of protecting the spirits, he invades the Southern Water Tribe capital, imposes a blockade, has his soldiers march through the streets provoking people, and when some of them kidnap him because they're obviously upset, he arrests the South's leader, AKA Korra's father, on trumped up charges. Instead of just setting up a perimeter around the spirit portal, which is some distance from the city, and letting people leave through the harbor, which would mean they'd be going away from the spirit portal. The only thing this accomplishes is to drive a wedge between him and Korra.
- Villain Override: Suggests that the reason that the Borg Queen starts blowing up her own ships in "Unimatrix Zero" actually came from Janeway being the one to control her.Janeway: Your mistake was assimilating me!
- Villain Protagonist: By his reckoning, Captain Kathryn Janeway.
- Vindicated by History: Discussed with The Thing (1982) doing poorly in ticket sales and reviews during its release, but is held in high regard today. Another example he mentions is The Princess Bride.
- Discussed how Star Trek: Insurrection actually inverted this- it did very well at the box office, but then faded away, becoming one of the most forgettable of the films.
- Voodoo Shark: Coined the trope name in his review of the Voyager episode, "The Cloud". The Voodoo Shark plot device in question is that the power supply to the holodeck on Voyager is stated to be completely incompatible with the rest of the ship. Chuck references this fact frequently in other episodes, such as when alien technology is subsequently integrated with the ship, meaning that utterly alien power sources are more compatible with Voyager than Voyager is with itself.
- Alludes to this in the review of Torchwood: Miracle Day, pointing out the sheer lack of explanation or information about the central plot device means that the only two clues in the first six episodes could easily be replaced with the words "Walrus Tusk" and still have just as much impact on the progress of the story.
- Walking Disaster Area: His version of Commander Shepard, appropriately named Shiva Shepard.
- Waxing Lyrical:
"Tall stranger, you are the wind beneath my wings."
- The Stupid Neelix Moment for "Manuevers" was subtitled, "I would not be just a nuthin', my head all fulla stuffin'..."
- "I'm off to see the Wizard, the wonderful Wizard of Booze!" — sung by Bones
- In response to Sybok's "secret pain" shtick, Chuck shoots back with "Hallelujah." (Star Trek V)I heard there was a secret pain
That Sybok finds to keep men sane
But you don't really care for bullshit, do yaaaaa... ♪
- "Yes, We've got trouble. Right here in River City. With a capital "T" and that rhymes with "3" and that stands for Ziyal."
- Quark spends the first act of "The Jem'Hadar" complaining about roughing it in outdoors and wishing his people would strip-mine the whole planet. For this he earns that episode's "Annoying Character" award, with the subtitle "Pave paradise and put up a parking lot."
- Just listen to Chuck's cackling laughter when Neelix's lungs are stolen. ("Phage")
- He eventually zones out in the middle of "Ex Post Facto" to hum "You Can Call Me Al" to himself.
- When some guy out-ranks you / And tells you what to do / That's an or-der... ♫ ("Unimatrix Zero")
- He expresses amusement that "Tsunkatse", a gimmick episode designed to attract testosterone-soaked WWE fans, more resembles "The Sound of Silence" set to film.
- "SUSPIRIAAAAAAA!!" ("Cold Fire")Chuck: ...you're breaking my heart, you're shaking my con-fi-dence dai-hee-ly... ♪"
- "SUSPIRIAAAAAAA!!" ("Cold Fire")
- Janeway instructing Kim to "brush up" on his Ancient Earth History. Hoo boy. There's a reason "The 37s" is the codifier of Ancient Chinese Secret.Kim: (panicking) Uhh, umm... On behalf of Napoleon Bonaparte, first Pope and the ever-living Pharaoh, I have been asked to welcome you in His traditional greeting, that you ain't nothin' but a hound dog, barking all the time!"
- "A Night in Sickbay" brought on the lyrics to "Karma Chameleon". He actually fell asleep beforehand, dreaming about Scott Bakula crawling out of his TV and peeing on the couch.
- "Crais is a maniac!" ("The Way We Weren't")"That's for sure. And he's...dancing like he's never danced before."
- Londo singing the No Beer Polka. ("One Small Step")"Een heaven there eez no beeeer! That's why wee drink eet heeere!"
- In Stargate SG-1's Pilot Movie, he sees a guy who resembles Meat Loaf killing a Jaffa, causing Chuck to quip:"Don't be sad Jaffa, two out of three ain't bad."
- The Stupid Neelix Moment for "Manuevers" was subtitled, "I would not be just a nuthin', my head all fulla stuffin'..."
- What Could Have Been: Discussed. In the TOS episode Shore Leave, a behind-the-scenes book says that Shatner wanted to wrestle the tiger and had to be talked out of it. Chuck is incredulous at this claim and believes that if Shatner did offer to wrestle the tiger, he did it as a joke and the story was since embellished.
- What Did You Expect When You Named It ____?:
- In his Sunshine review he points out that it's probably not a good idea to name a spaceship sent on a mission to the sun after a mythological character who was killed due to venturing too close to the sun. And after losing the first one, they named the next one Icarus II.
- The exploration vessel which disappeared at Z'ha'dum with Sheridan's wife on board in Babylon 5 was also named Icarus.Chuck: When will people learn to stop naming ships 'Icarus'? It never ends well!
- In Star Trek: Voyager episode "Scorpion" Chakotay names a seemingly safe route through Borg space the "Northwest Passage". Chuck proceeds to point out that several expeditions were lost looking for the Northwest Passage on Earth (that is to say, a way to navigate between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans through the waters between North America and the Arctic), and it ultimately proved to not exist. (Actually, it does exist, but has turned out to not be nearly as useful as people seeking it hoped.)
- When reviewing Gojira, he makes several jokes about Star Trek... but then points out that he isn't the one who named one of the locations "Odo Island."
- What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: References this trope several times when reviewing Gargoyles, in particular how it averts Never Say "Die". Also comes up in his Clone Wars review.
- WTH, Casting Agency?: Invoked while discussing the decision the director of "Code of Honor" made to cast the aliens of the week entirely with African-Americans:Chuck : The script makes numerous comparisons to Earth:
Data: That is from an obscure language known as French.
Picard: ...and [the Ligonian society's] unique similarity to an ancient Earth culture we all admire. On behalf of the Federation, therefore, I would like to present this token of our gratitude and friendship, from China's Song Dynasty.
Data: For example, what Lutan did is similar to what certain American-Indians once did, called "Counting Coup."
Chuck : So, of course... the director interpreted this to mean that everybody was black.
- What Measure Is a Mook?: Discussed with the Battle Droids in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Unlike in the prequel films, the droids in the series are clearly sentient and very much aware that theyre Cannon Fodder in a war they want no part of.
- What Measure Is A Non Minbari: In "Meet John Sheridan" he chews out the Minbari for launching a genocidal war against humanity over a simple cultural misunderstanding, refusing to accept Humanity's unequivocal surrender and then having the gall to be offended that the sole human victory of the war occured when John Sheridan managed to actually blow up one of their ships.
- Who Would Be Stupid Enough?: Leadership skills are going to be a key element to the crew's survival in "Basics Pt 2." Therefore, the four team leaders are Janeway, Tuvok, uhh...Harry Kim. And the fourth...? (Oh, this won't end well.)"(chuckling) Naah, you know who I'm gonna say! But you're wondering, "How could it happen?! How could anybody be stupid enough to actually suggest this?" Well, remember, we're in this situation precisely because of that stupidity!"
- Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: In the third "The Killing Game" video, a WWII-era Tom holds Harry at gunpoint to test whether he's a German or not. In theory, anything that Tom asks - anything at all - Harry can answer! Just so long as it's not related to the sexual behavior of a normal human being.Tom: If Betty Grable came around that corner, what part of her would you be staring at?
Harry: (sighs resignedly)
Chuck: And the answer is: None of the above! All he'd see is his grandmother slapping and shaking her finger at him for looking at girls, then her face splitting open and Janeway's head on a snake's body coming out and ordering him to remodulate her rug.
- Why We Can't Have Nice Things: Classic television mistake: handing a highly-breakable cup to a psychic. "Thanks, demons from the beyond!"
- This also appears to be Dooku's complaint when Sidious tells him to kill Asajj Ventress.
- Why We Are Bummed Communism Fell: "The first half of The '90s largely reflected this realization that the world was no longer what we thought it'd be, from the decline of the military industrial complex, to who should be the default bad guys in fiction."
- Wild Card: The inexorable Brannon Braga who, while not the crap writer he's been described as by some, isn't good enough to save bad material. In this respect, Chuck suspects he acts as a "multiplying factor" in whatever job he's given.
- Wicked Cultured: His interpretation of Khan, spending quite a while in the "Wrath of Khan" review quoting from the various books seen on Khan's shelf, noting how these few books have affected his worldview.
- Wild Mass Guessing: Discussed at length in the "Doctor Who?" special, where he lists the various speculative theories on the identity of John Hurt's Doctor, as well as where this incarnation possibly fits into the overall continuity.
- Willing Suspension of Disbelief: Refers to this in the Voyager episode "Faces", where he points out that the intelligent, believable way the characters were written in that episode makes it possible to accept that the episode's entire premise hinges on the absurd plot point that the Vidiians can somehow split one person into two fully-formed and fully-grown people.
- Although he doesn't mention it, it comes again for his review of Wall-e, were he mentions that, despite how simplistic the science was, the mature way things were handled allowed him to put that aside.
- Word-Salad Humor: In his review of Space: Above and Beyond, Chuck points out how R. Lee Ermey has perfected the Drill Sergeant Nasty persona to such a degree that he can literally say anything and it will have the same effect.Chuck: [Ermey Voice] "I WILL MARCH YOU DAISYMUFFINS THROUGH THE CAN-OPENER OF WAR!"
- The World Is Just Awesome: The No Context 5th Anniversary Clip Show starts with a straight adaptation of the original Discovery Channel ads using references to things he's reviewed, changing the message to "imagination makes the whole world even more awesome". He also gave this as his reason for still playing Star Wars: The Old Republic four years after release despite all the annoyances he described in his review of the Imperial Agent story, demonstrating it with a montage of random scenes from several of his other characters set to Fett's Vette.
- The Worf Effect: Worf seems to have finally overcome this in "By Inferno's Light", laying out 10 Jem'Hadar in a row.Chuck: [Worf baritone] It was the 'hitting them' part that I was having trouble with.
- Chuck theorizes that the reason for this trope's existance is that Worf's commanding officers in Star Trek: The Next Generation are such pantywaists that they keep hampering his efforts while giving the enemies time to prepare.
- Notes that Tim Russ seems to play characters who are on the recieving end of the Vulcan nerve pinch, more than anyone else in the franchise. Even though, as Tuvok, his character has three times the strength of a normal human... and he still gets knocked out this way!
- World of Ham: "Doctor Who is a world where no villain has an indoor voice."
- Wrong Genre Savvy: An interesting variation in "Tattoo" where, as Chuck points out, Chakotay is told by the chief that he should stay with his people and embrace the old ways... which is perfectly baffling to Chuck, as we're supposed to agree with this chief, when a) pretty much every other story in modern fiction would present "Staying with your kind and doing the same thing for all time" as a bad thing, and b) this takes place in a Star Trek episode, a series about finding the unknown and exploring all the strange and wonderful things of the universe, not staying in one's closed-off environment.
- He predicts that Samantha Carter, a strong feminist blonde woman, will be the one selected as the next one to be selected by the Goa'uld in the Stargate Pilot, and then spends the next fifteen seconds listing all the action movie cliches that will be employed... and then Skarra, Jack's surrogate son, is taken instead. After a moment of shock, Chuck praises this for subverting his expectations.
- X Days Since: The poor safety record of an entire moon in Star Trek VI is mocked."It's hard to imagine anyone would do something like this, without being deliberate gross negligence, like they have a sign up somewhere celebrating 428 days without a workplace apocalypse."
- You Can't Handle the Parody: Inserted into Dukat's rant in "Waltz."
- You Have Failed Me: Chuck's headcanon for why there are two different Borg Queens. The one played by Alice Krige was retired after the crippling losses to Picard and the Undine. The one played by Susanna Thompson was much more aggressive and expansionist, resolving to throw more cubes at enemies so they could claim more resources. Unfortunately, the Collective realized the new queen was willing to destroy entire ships just to taunt Janeway, so she was retired as well.
- You Keep Using That Word: Really hates their repeated use of the word "Ancient" to describe anything that takes place before the 21st Century, pointing that this means they've lumped Roman chariots and nuclear weapons into the same era.
- Launches into a tirade when Enterprise repeatedly uses the phrase, "Hull plating offline," explaining everything wrong about the term.
- You Might Remember Me from...:
- Brad Dourif:
- Previously, referred to Brad Dourif as "who you might remember from your nightmares". ("Passing Through Gethsemane")
- Wilford Brimley: Perpetual old man, oatmeal spokesman, and cock fighting enthusiast. (The Thing (1982))
- Hey kids, it's Mark Sheppard! "Great chance to talk about this performer in a rare appearance in a work of science fiction!""Okay, I lied, he's in every damn thing I review."
- Ronny Cox, whom you may remember from Beverly Hills Cop, RoboCop (1987), Cop Rock, Beverly Hills Cop II, and his most famous work Cop Cop Part Cop: Still Copping. ("Chain of Command")
- One of the Bond Babes in Dr. Bashir's holo-porn, Mona Lovesit, whom you might remember as "Girl in restaurant" and two — count 'em, two! — appearances on Baywatch. ("Our Man Bashir")
- Ensign Ballard you may recognize from the film version of Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand. ("Ashes to Ashes")"...And speaking of a manipulative coldhearted tormentor of all those she claims to love, Ballard's having dinner with Janeway!"
- Mr. Grey Poupon Guy! (Dark City) Guess those fifty years of theater and film training finally paid off, eh, Mr. Richardson?
- Says that there are so many speculative fiction actors and actresses in Stargate Atlantis that "EVERYONE is in this series."
- And then follows that up by a clip from the show of Rodney talking to Bill Nye The Science Guy. He's not kidding. This actually happened in the show.
- You Monster!: Notes the sheer horror of Janeway's actions in "Tuvix", where she forcibly executes Tuvix, who literally goes from person to person begging to be allowed to live. Besides the Doctor, everyone simply stands there and does nothing.
- Your Approval Fills Me with Shame: Discussed in the Wonder Woman review. "A tip: unless your goal is to make the hero question what they're doing, don't have their supporters defend them with things that are fucking stupid."
- Your Mom: Mentioning Spock's origin as his disadvantage to his face? One of the best Yo Momma jokes on Vulcan in thousands years. From Star Trek (2009) review.
- The Klingon Ambassador doesn't have anything to say to Sarek's accusations in Star Trek VI, other than, "er... yeah, well... yo' momma's so fat we don't have to look for whales this movie."
- Zany Scheme: Invoked as Quark in the Profit and Lace review, where he has to change his gender in order to dupe an influential businessman, cutting Bashir who took it seriously and started to advise to follow the lifestyle of a woman first before making such a life-changing decision. To Quark's regret, there is no Zany Scheme clause to speed up the process.
- Zee Rust: Chuck once mentioned that if he ever made a sci-fi film, he would deliberately use outdated tech and call it "advanced.""Stick a couple of Jacob's ladders on there and say they're to keep static charges away from the processors. Fuck trying to make the future look like the inside of an iMac. I want the future to look like a drunk tried to make a ham radio and gave up halfway through."