Author Topic: Star Trek - The Next Generation  (Read 5243 times)

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #30 on: March 02, 2020, 07:30:52 PM »
Holy shit this episode has Clive Revill in it, who I just watched in a Columbo last night, having the worst Irish accent ever.

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #31 on: March 02, 2020, 08:07:42 PM »
Season 1 visually aged badly, but it's decent storywise. Season 2 is fairly forgettable. There's the Borg episode, the war games episode and the whole really weird Pulaski replacing Crusher thing (yes I know there were real world reasons, but it's still so odd to watch) and that's about it.

From season 3 it kicks off and is generally very good with only one or two stinkers here and there. It does lean more on Picard and Data than on the rest of the crew, but nothing's perfect.

He is shit at the trombone, though.

The overdubbing of his trombone playing is really obvious in the episode where Ro and Geordie "die". I've seen different statements as to whether Frakes (who can play) overdubbed himself in post-production of if they got a session musician to do it.

"Favourite" Riker episode is the one with the people who suppress their gender identity and are all supposed to be totally androgynous. It was obviously supposed to be an allegory for accepting various sexual orientations and possibly gender identity (I say "possibly" because it was 30 years ago. Trans might have been a bit too progressive even for Star Trek back then). But because they had all the aliens played by women, it just looks like Riker trying to teach space lesbians about the wonder of cock.

DS9 was stronger with the complex storytelling between season 3-6, and the semi-regulars, especially Garak, really add to it. I personally didn't like season 7. Worf / Ezri pissed me off (Picard would've slapped his shit so hard over it), and there's the incredibly intelligence insulting bit where the Dominion blow up the entire allied fleet but let the good guys escape unharmed. They could've at least captured Martok and Sisko, who at that point were the only allied leaders to have successfully lead an offensive campaign against them. Also there were two really stupid holosuite episodes. Overall I like TNG more.

Voyager ditched its premise of the lone ship with a mixed bag of a crew after season 1 (and season 1 is actually quite short). It tentatively crops up at times in season 2, and then once more in season 6 or 7 when they hilariously run out of Deuterium which you can 'get almost anywhere' according to the show itself.

After S1 it just becomes a TNG 'alien/dilemma of the week' show after that. Except fluffier, for want of a better description, and the strong moral center of Picard replaced with your benevolent, but occasionally crazy Aunt Janeway. The quality is very uneven but on the whole it's decent.
« Last Edit: March 02, 2020, 10:20:56 PM by Wonderful Butternut »

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #32 on: March 02, 2020, 08:16:08 PM »
In general I thought TNG got better when it "grew the beard" but I don't have any particular feelings about Riker - it's just when IIRC they ran out of unused TOS season 4 scripts, got out of a writer's strike that was going on and started writing some new material unique to the next gen setting.

There was some shite, I'd agree with "pretty much anything with Troi's mum" and would also say Troi herself got on my tits sometimes like fairly late in the show when her personality seemed to boil down to "I like eating dessert" (even gets to the point where Data dreams she's literally turned into a cake).  Stinker of the show has to be that one where Crusher has sex with a ghost.  But lest the CaB fashion of ripping the piss out of the bad bits of things makes it sound like I hated it, most of the show was absolute gold.

My favourites I'd say are the usual ones everyone else tends to mention: Best of Both Worlds, Chain of Command, Measure of A Man, The Inner Light, Cause and Effect...

I also like many of those moments where Picard gives one of his crew a bollocking.  Usually either he softens up and is like "yeah so now I've said what I had to out of duty, you were right" or visibly agonises over his disappointment in his crew member.  Largely I think this is all PatStew's acting.

DS9 - first time I tried to watch it (when it was first running and I was like 10) I found all the Bajoran religion / politics stuff just sent me to sleep, and it was hard to follow as Sky One kept fucking about with the schedule so you'd be jumping back and forth in a show that has an ongoing storyline and continuity.  When I watched it fully as an adult much later seasons 1 and 2 with all the Bajoran religion and political stuff were actually the best parts to me.  I did love DS9 as a whole though, except that weird final season.
Oh, wasn't keen on the mirror universe stuff.  Or that back in the day, the only gay people were in the evil universe.  That hasn't aged very well IMO.

Voyager suffered from following on from DS9.  Too much to live up to.  It was a fine show in its own right, but tainted by the expectation of some kind of continuity like DS9 had (after all, they're supposed to be making their way home so that's a perfect foundation for continuity) when instead it had a reset button every episode.  The infinite supply of shuttlecraft and perfect self-repair abilities took the piss.  And as mentioned, the way the writers immediately squandered what could've been great long-running stories and conflicts.  It was just that sense of let-down, even though if you put that aside it's not a bad show.    I liked it best when it was the Doctor and Seven show, and worst when it was Janeway and Paris as lizards.

By the time Enterprise came along it was just getting silly.  Yet another TNG but set in the past and renaming shields to hull plating.  Yet another Vulcan with all the usual Vulcan stories (and let's face it, Data was pretty much the same in TNG).  It got better as it went on and explored a few new ideas but didn't help that sometimes Archer came across as a colossal dick - especially when they did that arc where he took to torturing people in airlocks because the show was reflecting current affairs so they had the whole "9/11 just happened and we're pissed off" routine.  Unfortunately it got better too late and that was the end of that.

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #33 on: March 02, 2020, 08:31:02 PM »
I'm bummed out we didn't get more Ro Laren. I think Michelle Forbes is a much stronger actor than Nana "not quite as bad a name as Rip Torn" Visitor and think DS9 would have been a better show with her in it.

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #34 on: March 02, 2020, 09:00:49 PM »
I can agree Dr Crusher never really had much to do, but at least she wasn't anywhere near as irritating as her brief replacement. Though I suppose t'other quack at least managed to get being kidnapped by Moriarty as a bit of story excitement.

That said, I do remember a Dr Bev story where she's mad about some alien hunk, but it turns out their "personality" is in some alien parasite or something, who then transfers to a woman's body when hunk gets crushed (not in the way he wanted, ho ho) or something. Alien is all "let's get it on" but Bev is "nah, makes me a bit uncomfortable, mate". Oh well.

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #35 on: March 02, 2020, 09:18:28 PM »
I didn't mind Pulaski too much but it's a shame they totally fumbled the attempt to create another Spock/Bones dynamic with her and Data and she ended up coming across as a callous bully.

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #36 on: March 02, 2020, 09:24:58 PM »
I love Pulsaki, she's the only one in the first 2 seasons allowed to have any rough edges.

You can be a huge arsehole to the puppet man that thinks he's a person and still be a good doctor.

(Edit: Also here's a woman who's archetype isn't 'Mother' or 'Wise'. Get her in a spinoff with Ro and Captain Ronny Cox... except, you know, she's dead)

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #37 on: March 02, 2020, 10:46:21 PM »
Voyager had an interesting premise, but then just tried to be TNG, but had much blander characters. The Doctor was the only good character, and Neelix was the worst ever Trek character (even more annoying than Wesley in TNG and Rom in a "comedy" Ferenghi DS9 episode).

Rom is bloody ace, think of him as a happy but stupid cuddly puppy and he becomes far less annoying. I always liked his point of trying to do something else in life apart form spending every waking moment making cash like his brother.


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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #38 on: March 02, 2020, 11:10:42 PM »
Drumhead is next episode after this one, Qpid, which I may watch with tea tonight. Excited now, fuck.

We’re pretty much on the same page in terms of viewing! Drumhead is an interesting one.

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #39 on: March 02, 2020, 11:16:43 PM »
Qpid was a bit disappointing to be honest, which is weird because it's a Q episode.

Worf's I'M NOT A MERRY MAN is a highlight of course.


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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #40 on: March 02, 2020, 11:34:13 PM »
Qpid was a bit disappointing to be honest, which is weird because it's a Q episode.

Worf's I'M NOT A MERRY MAN is a highlight of course.

I know what you mean - Q turns up slightly too late, with the Robin Hood plot running a bit late into the proceedings. Then Q cucks Picard, which felt a bit weird - Picard a bit too not arsed, cigs about the whole thing.

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #41 on: March 02, 2020, 11:46:28 PM »
The night terrors episode had me slightly shitting it during the floating sequences. I love Troi as a character, but yeah some of her episodes are duffers.

To be fair I think her and Wesley(although he's obviously not present nearly as much) improve more than anyone during the shows run, less mystical stuff and more either actual counselling or her as an unsure officer in training.

Voyager does I think tend to suffer from a weakness of character, Seven, the Doctor and Torres are the only ones I found consistently interesting, maybe Paris every so often also able to support character episodes but generally the show was better when it was pushing the over arching plot or doing stand alone two partners like Year of Hell that didn't depend on the character as much. For that reason as well I think you could watch voyager skipping a hell of a lot without really missing that much, the opening, some Kazon episodes, most Borg episodes and a few other ones with high ratings per season.

DS9 is I'd say a much larger undertaking since theres less to be skipped there after you get past the first 2-3 seasons. There are a handful of very good episodes even early on though IMHO like Duet or The Wire.

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #42 on: March 02, 2020, 11:51:40 PM »
Seasons 1 and 2 were a mess for the writers. Gene Roddenberry was obsessed with what had happened to him on The Motion Picture (fired and replaced by different guys for the sequels), and he tried his best to make any significant voice in the writing room go silent, so Paramount wouldn't have anybody to replace him as a showrunner. So, he got rid of David Gerrold and Bob Justman, he sidelined D.C. Fontana, forced the writers to use Wesley (which was his middle name, he was definitely a Mary Sue).
At the same time, he was experiencing a series of mini-strokes that left him more and more exhausted. On TOS, he would rewrite an entire script overnight with a typewriter and a bottle of whisky. On TNG, he would push for more sexuality (Justice, from season 1, has every alien wearing some kind of toilet paper as a cloth, and his rewrites for The Outrageous Okona were all about depicting the character as the ultimate pussy magnet). This also resulted in him being unable to spend a lot of time on the set or in the writers room, and he was replaced in that capacity by his personal attorney, who had no experience with writing.

Meanwhile, he trusted writer Maurice Hurley to do things his way. Hurley sexually harassed Gates McFadden. As she wasn't willing to answer his offers, he explained that it was too complicated to handle a redhead actress because of the lightning on the show that made her hair curl, and that it was time to shuffle up things, hence her replacement by Pulaski. At least, there are a couple of decent episodes in season 2, like Measure of a Man or the introduction of the Borg.

Paramount ultimately managed to confront Roddenberry, forced him to stay on the backseat and appointed instead Rick Berman to take over at the start of season 3. Berman had apparently some kind of grudge against Wil Wheaton, but he was also clever enough to put together a good writing room headed by Michael Piller, who discovered a lot of beginners like Ron D. Moore, Brannon Braga, etc. Season 4 was as good as the one before, with a new director of photography who changed the lightning quite a bit, etc. They kept Troi's mother because her episodes were ratings hits. They brought older women to the show, and networks loved that.

And then, when we reach the final season, the writers were clearly getting out of ideas, hence dreck like the "Bev in Scotland with the ghost parasite that attacked all her female ancestors", "Sub Rosa", which was based on a spec script sent to them (they didn't see that it was also a ripoff from an Anne Rice novel, and they just regarded it as an update to The Turn of the Screw).
To be fair, they never really found how to write properly episodes around Troi, Bev Crusher or Tasha Yar. They tended to put them in situations were they were weak and exposed, plagued with doubts, rather than putting them in a more active position.

Also, Vash was brought to the show because Patrick Stewart had an affair with Jennifer Hetrick that actually cost him his marriage. They were then briefly engaged around "Qpid".

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #43 on: March 03, 2020, 12:01:13 AM »
Ironically though I think Roddenberry's wife ended up with a far better role on B5 than she did on TNG.

I felt a lot of the issue they had in the season or two was that the characters were becoming a bit played out and safe. It was never the most dramatic series I spose but the conflict/flaws the characters did have tended to be smoothed out rather so there was more dependence on plot.

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #44 on: March 03, 2020, 10:28:06 AM »
Watching this through for the first time too, just onto Season 5. Love any involving Q or yer man Lt. Barkley, time travel/wormholes (Yesterday's Enterprise), mystery ones (The Survivors, Clues) or ones with cool new undiscovered species/phenomena. 

I can't really take Klingons besides Worf seriously. They've got no business being a space-faring civilization have they? How did that happen?

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #45 on: March 03, 2020, 11:23:55 AM »
I can't really take Klingons besides Worf seriously. They've got no business being a space-faring civilization have they? How did that happen?

They were invaded by a space fairing race the Hur’q during their feaudal stage, who underestimated how bad ass the klingons were and got kicked off, leaving loads of their technology behind. This also had the effect of prolonging their feudal age as the lords had control of the advanced technology.

It's only really a problem with the TNG/DS9 klingons. The TOS aren't as stupid.

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #46 on: March 03, 2020, 11:40:48 AM »
Watching this through for the first time too, just onto Season 5. Love any involving Q or yer man Lt. Barkley, time travel/wormholes (Yesterday's Enterprise), mystery ones (The Survivors, Clues) or ones with cool new undiscovered species/phenomena. 

I can't really take Klingons besides Worf seriously. They've got no business being a space-faring civilization have they? How did that happen?

That's actually one aspect I think they shifted for the worst across TNG and DS9, shifting the Klingons too much towards space Vikings rather than having the vestiges of that culture in a more obviously advanced imperialist race.

The in universe explanation was I believe that an alien race invaded their homeworld and when the Klingons freed themselves from enslavement they took their technology so jumped forward far more than they should have. You could argue that was nicked from B5(like so much else around DS9)though with the Narn's story.

One aspect of TNG I felt the following series always struggled more with was the episodes with more atmosphere/menance, I can't think of too many strong DS9/Voyager episodes along those lines, maybe the one were Bashir gets attacked by an alien and ends up on a version of the station representing his own mind?

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #47 on: March 03, 2020, 11:47:13 AM »
Ah but if Klingons were not mad space viking warrior race hard cases, Worf wouldn't be a fish out of water on the Enterprise as much.

They are just prone to violence and find honour in fighting.

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #48 on: March 03, 2020, 12:09:44 PM »
The in universe explanation was I believe that an alien race invaded their homeworld and when the Klingons freed themselves from enslavement they took their technology so jumped forward far more than they should have. You could argue that was nicked from B5(like so much else around DS9)though with the Narn's story.

It's a pretty common trope in sci-fi, as it allows you to have space vikings.

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #49 on: March 03, 2020, 01:06:47 PM »
The TNG era Klingons are quiet sophisticated under all that Viking opera brouhaha. There are details here and there, like their intelligence gathering being top notch, and well, there is a lot of culture there, opera and all, which hint at it.

The Ferengi, on the other hand, what the hell is it with their Grand Nagus? Makes no sense. Almost as bad an idea as the Borg Queen.

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #50 on: March 03, 2020, 01:08:48 PM »
Speaking of Worf and Klingons, the angle I wish they'd always pushed further in both TNG and DS9 is that Worf is basically a weeaboo for what he thinks "Klingon culture" is. He grew up on Earth and most of what he knows about Klingons seems to be second-hand information, which is why he's mostly genuinely honourable and strives for peace, while many Qo'noS-born Klingons we meet across the series are amoral and violent. Worf's perception of Klingon honour is far better than the version practiced by actual native Klingons.

I don't think they ever went for that idea at all outside that one scene in DS9 where Dax points out that Worf isn't really that much of a traditional Klingon. Instead TNG just tends to push the idea that Klingons are actually all inherently biologically violent and aggressive which is pretty bad for a number of reasons.

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #51 on: March 03, 2020, 01:35:19 PM »
Rewatched some early episodes recently and couldn't help but think the original Ferengi are just antisemitic stereotypes that they've tried to disguise by giving them big ears instead of noses.

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #52 on: March 03, 2020, 01:36:22 PM »
Rewatched some early episodes recently and couldn't help but think the original Ferengi are just antisemitic stereotypes that they've tried to disguise by giving them big ears instead ofas well as big noses.

FTFY?

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #53 on: March 03, 2020, 06:57:46 PM »
Rom is bloody ace, think of him as a happy but stupid cuddly puppy and he becomes far less annoying. I always liked his point of trying to do something else in life apart form spending every waking moment making cash like his brother.



Yes, he was an OK character, except when he said "moooooooooogy", which was almost as annoying as Neelix saying, well, anything.

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #54 on: March 03, 2020, 06:59:55 PM »
I know what you mean - Q turns up slightly too late, with the Robin Hood plot running a bit late into the proceedings. Then Q cucks Picard, which felt a bit weird - Picard a bit too not arsed, cigs about the whole thing.

I used to hate the episode, because I (seriously) really wanted to hear Picard's speech, and I thought the "Robinhood" nonsense was BS. I still think the "Robinhood" nonsense is BS (for reasons I can't be bothered to go into), but nowadays I can at least tell Picard's speech would have been very boring.

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #55 on: March 03, 2020, 07:03:27 PM »

DS9 is I'd say a much larger undertaking since theres less to be skipped there after you get past the first 2-3 seasons. There are a handful of very good episodes even early on though IMHO like Duet or The Wire.

The early seasons are the best bit of DS9. It was good to see a slightly more deeply explored culture (Bajor) than usual. The fact that they didn't even bother to close the Bajor "arc" in season seven is a tragedy.

I was always a little dismayed when they sexed the show up with the Defiant, Worf and the war. Oddly, I loved it when B5 brought in the White Star, and that was apparently a direct copy of DS9 bringing in the Defiant. But hey ho, I never said I was consistent. Awesome, but not consistent.

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #56 on: March 03, 2020, 10:03:14 PM »
Drumhead:

Picard won't act on a Betazoid reading of a person despite always acting on Troi's hunches. Am I missing something or is Picard being a hypocrite to fuck?

Good episode though, Picard is as cool as beans.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2020, 10:24:33 PM by bgmnts »

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #57 on: March 04, 2020, 03:15:31 AM »
bloody bloody edit bloody bleedin bloody bug

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Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #58 on: March 04, 2020, 05:13:51 AM »
The early seasons are the best bit of DS9. It was good to see a slightly more deeply explored culture (Bajor) than usual. The fact that they didn't even bother to close the Bajor "arc" in season seven is a tragedy.

I was always a little dismayed when they sexed the show up with the Defiant, Worf and the war. Oddly, I loved it when B5 brought in the White Star, and that was apparently a direct copy of DS9 bringing in the Defiant. But hey ho, I never said I was consistent. Awesome, but not consistent.

DS9's relative lack of planning by comparison did I think hold back its arc rather as you had a much more dispirit collection of plots, most obviously the Emissary and Dominion plots never really came together that effectively with the former ending up as a side plot by the last season in which Sisko only became involved in it at the end with a rather cheap resolution.

I actually felt the dominion arc was most effective when it was really the Garak/Tain story.

Re: Star Trek - The Next Generation
« Reply #59 on: March 04, 2020, 11:23:52 AM »
I never understood why he's always looking to shag everything that moves

It's why you join Starfleet.

Quote
when it's apparent very early on that he and Troi are inevitably going to hook up, but I guess perhaps they have an understanding of some kind.

Because you only live once, even in Star Trek, and you might like to get some betentacled alien action in before settling down on some nice but ultimately boring asteroid with your One True Betazoid Bae?




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