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[S1E1] Pilot: Phase Six



The real question of the Six Feet Under pilot is how to grapple with death, and while the dirt sprinkling device provides a nice opportunity to bring the conflict between David and Nate to a head (as the latter compares it to a popcorn salt shaker), Six Feet Under is less interested in leveling a critique of death-related commodity fetishism and more interested in the various ways we attempt to process it. The ads themselves represent the movement of denial and play with the absurd in the direction of the ridiculous. It is only right that Six Feet Under would eschew returning to them as it moves into further phases of its development. Consumer products offer a non-answer to a problem that cuts (six feet?) deep into the ground of the soul.




[S1E1] Pilot: Phase Six



Archer and Tucker leave Enterprise and use the captured cell ship to travel to the helix, where they eventually locate Klaang. Although the Klingon is initially hostile, Archer threatens the alien with his phase-pistol so he will cooperate with the captain's orders. Together, the three men move through the helix and attack any Suliban guard that approaches them. The captain instructs Tucker to return to the cell ship with Klaang while he stays behind and tries to separate the helix using the magnetic device. After doing so, Archer contacts Tucker and tells the engineer not to return for him, but to take Klaang to Enterprise. Tucker complies as several of the drifting enemy ships surrounding the commandeered cell ship collide.


Aboard the helix, Archer fights with the alien officer. The alien nearly kills Archer with his own phase-pistol, but the captain moves out of the way just in time. The alien chases Archer into another room where a strobing, pulsating light throbs. Just as the alien shoots again, Archer is beamed aboard Enterprise. Tucker apologizes for using the transporter, but claims it was the only way to recover the captain. Enterprise immediately leaves the gas giant and jumps to warp speed.


Then, conn officer Lieutenant Torres reports that there is something reading as strange on his detector circuit. A large field begins to appear in front of the Enterprise, which reads as solid. Picard calls for Yar to turn off "that damned noise!" and go to yellow alert. Picard orders helm to make the ship come to a full stop. Soon after controls read full stop, a white light shines on the bridge and a humanoid emerges, dressed from 16th century Europe. Picard asks the being to identify itself. The being notes that he is called "Q" and walks around the bridge, while Torres discreetly takes a hand phaser out from the bottom of his console. Q, however, senses this and freezes Torres before he can fire. Q, after showing his ability, warns the crew of the Enterprise to go back to Earth or they shall most certainly die.


Later, on the bridge, Q appears on the Enterprise's main viewscreen and tells Picard that his time is running out. Worf reacts by pointing a phaser at him, but Picard restrains him, pointing out that he would be shooting the viewscreen instead of Q himself. Picard states that they will proceed the same regardless of Q's involvement, stating that, "If we're going to be damned, let's be damned for what we really are."


The conspicuous targeted attack leads Picard to suggest that Zorn may have more information about the aliens than he is letting on and orders Riker to seize him (admittedly illegally) so that they may interrogate him further. After he confirms with Troi that attacking the ship will not violate the Prime Directive and orders phasers prepared, Q appears, mocking Picard by telling him that savage Humans never seem to follow even their own rules.


Riker and the away team beam over to the entity and see that its corridors are exactly the same as the underground tunnels on Deneb IV. They find Zorn suspended in mid-air, being tortured. Riker and Data fire their phasers and free him. Suddenly, the ship pulses.


Soon, the captain realizes the truth: the Bandi have captured an alien lifeform, a space vessel lifeform, and have constructed Farpoint Station and its goods by feeding off its power; feeding it the energy it needs just enough to keep it alive so it can morph into any shape Farpoint wants. The ship in space is not actually a ship, but rather the alien life-form's mate. Picard assists the captured alien by using the Enterprise's phasers to deliver an energy beam to the entity allowing it to break free of its bonds, thus solving the mystery much to Q's dismay. Q then retreats, though he hints that it won't be the last time the crew sees him.


George R.R. Martin explained in a blog post on February 20, 2022, how the series was developed from conception to assigning specific scripts for the first season. In the early production phase, Martin himself collaborated with Ryan Condal on a pilot script for the first episode, but when the Long Night prequel pilot was suddenly rejected in October 2019, HBO greenlit a full first season for House of the Dragon - skipping the pilot stage entirely, surprising even Condal. In the early "brainstorming" stages outlining the series as a whole beyond the first season, Condal and Martin had a "mini writers room" with screenwriters Claire Kiechel, Wes Tooke, and Ti Mikkel. All three did contribute to ideas for the series as a whole, but Kiechel and Tooke departed for other projects before the writing process on specific Season 1 scripts began (thus they were not part of the "writers' room" roundtable meetings in Season 1). Ti Mikkel, however, is a writing assistant to Martin, and remained as part of the writers' room meetings for Season 1 itself (though she is not credited with writing a specific episode, Martin mentions her alongside the others as part of the Season 1 writing staff).


At home, Jack Bauer, Director at CTU Los Angeles, is playing a game of chess with his teenage daughter Kim. Kim asks him if "she" is still giving him the cold shoulder, and Jack reminds her to call her "Mom." As it's a school night, he sends her to bed; she passes by her mother, Teri, in the kitchen, but ignores her goodnight. Upset, Teri says that Kim still blames her for Jack moving out a few months before. Jack insists it's just a phase teenage girls go through, but suggests they both go talk to her about her behavior.


Accordingly, Buzsáki and Moser (2013) have proposed that the mechanisms for representing a path through an environment are basically the same for representing episodes in memory, and the capacity of the brain to generate and store sequences seems to be the key mechanism supporting both self-based navigation and episodic memory. More specifically, as the position-dependent sequential firing of neurons along a linear path, sequences linking arbitrary items in episodic memory are essentially unidimensional. At the neurophysiological level, this shared mechanism for generating neural sequences would be supported by theta phase-modulation of gamma power in the hippocampus and entorhinal cortex (Buzsáki and Moser, 2013; Colgin et al., 2009). Within this view, therefore, the continuous spatial updating of the self-position over time during path integration might represent the basic spatial code for the temporal processing of episodes/events. In this respect, it is worth noticing that the proprioceptive path integration training employed in our study was based on a continuous updating of the self-position from proprioceptive/idiothetic and vestibular information, which might be assumed to reinforce the spatial awareness of the body movement in space, and then provide a refined self-based reference system during subsequent temporal order memory judgments. As far as the specific type of navigational training, finally, we might not exclude that also other forms of egocentric navigational training, such as couplings between a recognition point and the direction in which the route continues, might induce a modulation of the episodic memory performance but we argue that the sequential updating aspect of the path integration training might represent the core mechanism supporting the observed modulation on the memory performance.


"Actually, that's not true, Leonard. Recently I've been thinking that given the parameters of your experiment, the transport of electrons through the aperture of the Nano fabric metal rings is qualitatively no different from the experiment already conducted in the Netherlands...observed phase shift in the diffusing electrons inside the metal ring already conclusively demonstrated the electron analog of the Aharonov-Bohm quantitative interference effect...That's it, that's all I know. Oh, wait! Fig Newton's were named after a small town in Massachusetts not the scientist!"[Penny unknowingly insulting Leonard's work]


Since it's dated right around when filming began, the script found at Cushing is likely the closest we'll ever come to seeing what this earlier pilot looked like. (The leaked copy could have been a real draft, too, though probably from an earlier phase of production.) 041b061a72


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