3 Supernova Questions about Ja’loja
Last year, we (Daley Review) covered The Orville with weekly podcasts and standard long-form reviews. Turns out, that’s a LOT of work. This year, we’re going to try and bring up questions of interest that may run from week to week. Or sometimes they’ll only be interesting for that show. Sometimes they’ll only be interesting to the authors. The point is, we’re asking questions now and we’re hoping to engage in civilized discussion among other fans of the show. Tall order, I know.
Also, we’re going to release the podcast in 2-week bundles. Meaning, we’ll cover 2 episodes of The Orville per podcast. Innovative, you say?
Let me admit up front that I don’t care a lick about the doctor (Penny Johnson Jerald) and her kids in this one. I never liked the Wesley-centric episodes of STTNG, or any of the other kid-centric Star Trek spin-off episodes. At least Marcus’ drunken shenanigans were just the B plot and not the main thrust of the episode. It goes without saying that I have zero supernova questions regarding Marcus’ (BJ Tanner) budding delinquency and alcoholism.
When will The Orville grow out of re-hashing Star Trek Episodes?
I hate to make comparisons to Star Trek because I believe in Seth and his vision for The Orville. However. Certain story elements still stand out as having been “borrowed” from Star Trek or one of its spin-offs. In this case, Bortus’ (Peter Macon) Ja’loja trip back to Moclus reminds this reviewer a helluva lot like Spock needing to address his growing “pon farr”.
I understand there are about 6 million different Star Trek episodes out there and some overlap becomes inevitable. But – this one feels like a direct parody (spoof more like) of Spock and his need to find a mate, especially given the motivations of Bortus’ captain and first officer. It’s like Seth wanted to use the pon farr plot device, twist it around a little so that the crew needed to find dates instead of Bortus, and then make everyone have to watch Bortus pee.
I’m gonna need a little more from The Orville going forward. Am I alone on that?
What’s the deal with Lt. Tyler (Michaela McManus)?
Much like Malloy (Scott Grimes), we’d like to know what the deal is with the Orville’s new Dark Matter Cartographer. When LaMarr (J. Lee) departed the bridge for his new post in engineering, we knew a new cast member would join the crew. I don’t recall if it was in our reviews or our podcast, but we went so far as to predict the addition of an attractive female crew member. Um, check. We also predicted that she would become a love interest for Ed. Double check.
That’s where the old predictions ended.
What’s to come as of now, though? Most of the episode, LaMarr helped Malloy hone his zipper-covered game in an attempt to pitch woo in Lt. Tyler’s general direction. Although he only succeeded in creating a Electric Boogalo-style jacket and a fast-paced walk-by, there’s some chance Malloy’s unrequited feelings could play into future episodes. Or not. He’s kind of a moment-to-moment guy. I bet it comes up later, though (especially given that the girl he likes might have the hots for his best friend).
All we DO know about her is that she appears to love her job AND wants to get to know Ed better. Those are good things. She also wanted to take a very detailed tour of the bridge and other stuff. That’s a little suspicious, but after having watched Star Trek Discovery, I’m suspicious of all crew members now.
Suspicions aside, a new love interest for Ed might cast a different light on Kelly’s attitude toward her former husband. I mean, doesn’t it have to? It’s one thing to move on to the perfectly reasonable Cassius (Chris Johnson) when Ed spends his off hours sipping drinks, alone at the bar. It might become something more difficult when Kelly sees Ed laughing and possibly canoodling with the charming Lt. Tyler.
Is this guy of Kelly’s a real long-term thing?
Time will tell, of course. Personally, I’d expected this episode to pick up after some general period of time between episodes, sort of like weekly episodes. Instead, we got enough of a time jump that Kelly could start a whole relationship with Cassius. Given the amount of Kelly-pining we saw in just this episode, it seems like Ed would have noticed something like that, but whatever. That’s one of those, “It’s just TV,” kind of things.
This whole series could turn out to be about Ed and Kelly’s relationship and everything they go through to make it back to each other. Moments last season made it seem like their brokenhearted little paths would inevitably cross, but now we’re diverging again. The trouble is, as Ed found out, there’s nothing really to despise about Cassius. He’s smart. He’s into Kelly. Those are good things. Kelly, on the other hand, hasn’t formed this relationship to spite or hurt Ed. She just wants to move on and find someone she can be happy with.
You can’t blame her for that. But I’m still gonna need Ed and Kelly to get back together before they cancel this show.
A not-so-supernova question: What more have we learned about Orville mythos?
Moclans, a race which enforces a single gender upon its populace, also apparently ceremoniously urinates only once a year. They appear to do things one way and that’s it.
The Orville, a mid-size exploratory ship, appears to carry a civilian crew beyond what we saw last year. In this episode we saw Jason Alexander (Olix) and Will Sasso (Mooska) in heavy makeup helping out in the canteen. We also met Cassius, Kelly’s schoolteacher boyfriend. Although we saw kids last year, we never got to see how that all worked. Now we know, they go to school.
Although this wasn’t an amazing season premiere, we got a new character and whole slew of new episodes to look forward too.
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