Toren is on Bandcamp!

The first of my a capella tracks is available free (or more specifically, pay-what-you-want) for a limited time on bandcamp. Go to the site to see all the new tracks as they appear, and click the ‘follow’ button while you’re there so you don’t miss a thing!

This track is originally from my podcast Caustic Soda and has a swear word in it. Explicit! Parental Advisory!

More tracks to follow in the coming weeks. Stay tuned!

Toren’s Guide to Star Trek Voyager: Season 5

Click here for Season 1
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Click here for season 3
Click here for Season 4
Click here for Season 6
Click here for Season 7


The guys who seem evil are good, and the guys who seem good are evil. Janeway becomes a seclusive weirdo who won’t come out of her ready room or see any of the crew. That seems like grounds for dismissal but luckily I’m not a counsellor or doctor so yeah, go nuts Janeway. Also did you know that space can be polluted with radiation? 5.5/10


Ensign Mulcahey, Seven’s nanoprobes and the Doctors mobile emitter have a baby. Bit of a rehash of “I, Borg” from TNG with Seven in the mix. 6.9/10
Continue reading “Toren’s Guide to Star Trek Voyager: Season 5”

Toren’s Guide to Star Trek: Voyager Season 4

Click here for Season 1
Click here for Season 2
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Click here for Season 5
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The Borg send a drone that just happens to be human to work with the Voyager crew on a weapon that can defeat their nemesis, Species 8472. Despite the fact that they are from another dimension, Kes communicates with them telepathically. The Voyager-Borg alliance prevails but the borg double-cross forces Janeway to destroy all but Seven of Nine. 6.5/10


Once stripped of her human identity by the borg, Seven now has her borg identity stripped by Janeway. This causes an ethical dilemma for The Doctor but luckily not for Janeway. Meanwhile Kes’ mental powers are blossoming dangerously and we finally get a conversation between Neelix and Kes about their mysterious breakup. Kes explodes into who-knows-where but not before sending the ship out of Borg space with her powers. 6.5/10


Paris and B’ellana get mushy in space suits while marooned in space. 5/10
Continue reading “Toren’s Guide to Star Trek: Voyager Season 4”

Toren on the Storm Crow Podcast

toastEpisode 3 of the Storm Crow Cast features Toren Atkinson talking about The Darkest of the Hillside Thickets, Spaceship Zero the album and the roleplaying game, Star Trek, cartoons, and Star Trek cartoons. It all happens in the Storm Crow Alehouse on Broadway in Vancouver.

Listen and you could win a Spaceship Zero CD and signed copy of the SSZ roleplaying game!

Listen to it on google play or on iTunes

Top 3 Star Trek: Animated Episodes

A few facts about the 1973-1974 Star Trek: The Animated Series:

  • All the original series actors returned to voice their characters except for Walter Koenig, who was not asked for budgetary reasons. James Doohan did several ancillary characters.
  • It was produced by Filmation, the same studio that brought us He-Man and Fat Albert.
  • It was the first Star Trek series to win an Emmy Award.
  • The animated series introduced the concept of the Holodeck, best known from ST:TNG and introduced Kirk’s middle name as Tiberius.
  • Two new alien crew members were introduced (to replace Chekov) – the feline Lt. M’Ress and the orange, six-limbed Lt. Arex.

toastThe Slaver Weapon

Season 1 episode 14

Written by Larry “Ringworld” Niven, who I kind of interviewed on my podcast Caustic Soda. He incorporated his own “Known Space” mythos including the cat-like Kzinti. Spock, Sulu and Uhura are captured and have to prevent an ancient weapon from falling into the hands of the Kzinti. Rather unfortunately, in my opinion, instead of having the characters wear space suits on the inhospitable alien planet, the series uses the very cheaty “life support belts.” The only Kirk-era episode of any series to not include Kirk! Alan Dean Foster adapted this episode into a full length novel.


Season 1 episode 2

Spock uses the Guardian of Forever – which was introduced in the classic series episode “City on the Edge of Forever” – to travel back in time to when he was a child on Vulcan and prevent his own death. Written by Dorothy DC Fontana who wrote many great original series episodes, and Mark Lenard reprises his role as Spock’s pappy, Sarek. Keep your eye out for the Enterprise’s Andorian first officer and the introduction of the Vulcan animal sehlat which they brought back for the ST: Enterprise episode “The Forge.”

toastThe Survivor 

Season 1 episode 6

A missing Federation philanthropist is found on a damaged spacecraft and reunited with his old flame aboard the Enterprise, but he is not what he seems. Also he has a crazy space moustache and cravat tie. Here we get an idea of the kind of alien they could do in a cartoon but never in the original live action series. Carter Winston was voiced by Ted Knight (Mary Tyler Moore, Caddyshack)


Toren’s Guide to Star Trek: Voyager Season 3

Click here for Season 1
Click here for Season 2
Click here for Season 4
Click here for Season 5
Click here for Season 6
Click here for Season 7


Grima Wormtongue is back! Conveniently he dies so he is remembered as a hero and we don’t have to develop his character any more. 6/10


Tuvok remembers Captain Sulu! Tie-in to Star Trek: the Undiscovered Country. 6.75/10 mostly due to Sulu.


Paris and Kim are prisoners on a space prison where a device makes them aggro. Paris gets shanked. Captain Janeway crosses a line getting involved in alien politics. 5.5/10


The Doctor starts forgetting stuff so they have to activate the holographic Dr. Zimmerman EMH diagnostic program. The only way to fix the doc’s brain is to overlay the brainy-matrixy-blahblahblah from the diagnostic program holographic dude onto the doctor, which means there will be no more diagnostic program. Oh, also a swarm of aliens attack the ship. 6.75/10


Tie in to the TNG episode “The Price” in which two ferengi are lost in a wormhole. Now they’re in the Delta Quadrant doing their ferengi thing. Neelix pretends to be a ferengi and it suits him. Also probably the most perfectly-named episode of any Star Trek episode. 7/10


Torres’ dreams are used by a psychic alien to bring to light genocide in their recent history. 6/10


For no good reason, Janeway’s “faith” in science is put to the test when she has to perform a bunch of dumb rituals and believe in magic in order to save Kes’ life, which was inflicted by alien monks for no good reason. 5.5/10

FUTURE’S END (2 parts)

OF COURSE Voyager travels back to 1996 Earth! But they don’t stay because that would be temporal weirdness. Ed Begley Jr and Sarah Silverman act! 6.75/10


Kes’ body becomes the host for a male warlord but he continues to put girly makeup on his new body, and it’s weird for his wife. Jennifer Lien gets to act like a cartoon villain. 6/10


Q is back and this time he wants to have baby-making sex with Janeway and isn’t the kind of omnipotent being to take no for an answer. Why? There’s a civil war going on in the Q and naturally it takes the form of the American Civil War because otherwise how could our tiny minds comprehend? The Return of Suzie Plakson as Q’s ex-wife, who takes the form of a woman, of course, because otherwise how could our tiny minds comprehend? 5.5/10


The ship is infected with a macrovirus and Janeway gets all Ripley on it. Notwithstanding actors struggling with CGI monsters, pretty good! 7/10


Neelix becomes a drug dealer when he reunites with an old Talaxian associate. Also there’s a space cloud. 5/10


Kim falls in love with a holodeck lady but then the hololady falls in love with Tuvok but then the lady turns out to be an alien and she’s a big creepy nerd. 5.7/10


Janeway dies and goes to the afterlife where she hangs out with her ghost dad. Surprise! Ghost dad is an alien and he wants to eat her soul! But she refuses to go and the Doctor revives her. 6/10.


Vorik the Vulcan gets the pon farr and wants sexy times with B’ellana Torres, but she punches him. Then Torres goes into heat and tries to sex up Tom Paris, which would normally be fine for him except she’s not able to give consent in her crazed state, induced by a psychic whatever from Vorik. Then Vorik fight it out and that cures them because I guess fighting is like sex. 5.4/10


Chakotay crashes on a planet with ex-borgs who were severed from the collective. The ex-borg have split into two warring factions. To heal his wounds Chakotay must join the ex-borgs’ scaaaaary neural link. Chakotay then goes to the dormant Borg cube that Voyager finds and against Janeway’s orders reactivates a doohicky that links all the ex-borg together so there’s no more fighting between the factions. This episode is a prelude to some species who are so powerful they can defeat the borg. 6/10


Kes gets romantically involved with a douchy alien because apparently she broke up with Neelix. Meanwhile the Doctor becomes all Mr Hyde evil Doctor and wants to destroy the good doctor that’s still inside him. Hammy and dumb. 4/10.


On a mission of mercy, Tuvok and Neelix are trapped on a space elevator. They get mad at eachother during a murder mystery. 5/10


Harry Kim learns that he is not a human – he’s actually a member of a race of space succubi, except of course he’s not really. 3/10.


In a prequel to the episode “Year of Hell,” Kes experiences time weirdness and reverts back to a fetus. 6/10


The Doctor creates a holographic family so he can experience “real life” but the program gets too real when his daughter suffers a fatal accident. Meanwhile, crazy space anomaly is dangerous. 6.5/10


Lizardman scientist tries to convince the religious leaders of his planet that they evolved from Earth dinosaurs. 7/10


Aliens con the crew into thinking they switching places with them by accident, but actually the aliens are trying to take over the ship. 6.8/10


The safety protocols are disengaged in the holodeck thanks to the ghost of Seska and Tuvok’s mutiny simulation. 6.9/10


An extradimensional species is destroying the Borg and if Voyager wants to pass through Borg space to get home Janeway will have to cut a deal with them. 7/10