To boldly go...

Discussion in 'Films, TV, Music, Books, Etc.' started by Paradox, Jun 25, 2012.

  1. Paradox

    Paradox Soaring Phoenix

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    As I stated in another topic, I've decided to re-watch all episodes of Star Trek through the magic of Netflix (excluding the animated series). So I thought, why not keep a running dialogue of my observations as I progress?

    I'm going chronologically to the Star Trek mythos, so I began with Enterprise. Now, I know this series is often frowned upon as the weakest entry in the franchise, but I'm a forgiving person when it comes to television and movies. If it can entertain me, I'll usually give it a thumbs up. The only real fault I found with Enterprise was the last season. It was comprised almost entirely of three-part episodes. Not that they were bad, but many of those mini-arcs could have been shortened to one or two episodes. By doing so they could have done more stand alone episodes for season four with maybe some more diverse subject matter. 

    Some of the episodes were obvious allusions to modern problems. Not that that's a bad thing, but many times it was too on the nose. T'Pol is forced into a mind meld and in a later episode the viewer is hit over the head with the similarities to rape, AIDS and its stigmas. There were other episodes that tackled topics such as racism and discrimination that seemed to stop just short of the actors winking into the camera and saying, "You know what we're really talking about.". 

    Despite a few infractions like the above, however, I really enjoyed Enterprise. There were many episodes that were really well done ('Dear Doctor' for example) and it had fewer misses as a whole I think than the other Star Trek series. 

    It was cool to see certain species of the original series revisited such as the Andorians, Tellarites, Tholians, and Gorn. I liked all the references to the other series and movies.  Scott Bakula  was a good captain with the best parts of both Kirk and Picard. Sometimes I was hit over the head with forced sex appeal, but I was entertained and would have looked forward to a fifth season dealing with the Romulan war. 

    I may have more to say on Enterprise later if discussion leads that way or if something else comes to mind, but for now, I'll move onto the Original Series. 

    I recall first seeing this show when I was seven or eight years old and becoming enamored with it. I've watched here and there over the past twenty-plus years, but this is the first opportunity I've had to watch it all together. 

    When I looked up the episodes on Wikipedia, I noticed that they mostly originally aired out of order from production order, so I'm going through them by production, rather than air-date. 

    I'm almost a third of the way through the second season, and I've already realized a contradiction to a popular observation: as of yet, Kirk hasn't banged any alien chicks. He's kissed one or two, but the Captains' log hasn't touched any strange new poon thus far. 

    Coming right off of Enterprise, I kept trying to reconcile that show with this one, but I had to push that out of my head. The first season was just to in flux and no canon had been established yet. Many times Spock is a 'Vulcanian' who smiles. Until halfway though the first season, there was no Starfleet. It was Space Command or the United Space Probe Agency (yoo-spa) or something similar. I don't think I heard about the Federation until recently in season two. The timeframe of the show hasn't been set yet. Some references put the show eight to nine hundred years in the future. Many others place it mid 22nd century (23rd century is now canon).

    I know the reason behind no shuttlecraft in early episodes (they couldn't afford them), but they were referenced. So it broke suspension of disbelief when someone was stuck on a planet because the transporter broke. Why not send a shuttle? Even if it is off screen.

    Uh-oh! There's a terrible plague on some planet and they need this vaccine ASAP. Ahead warp ONE.  And it seems every other episode the ship is out of power or fuel and is threatened with de-orbiting. 

    However, any grievances I have are made with the knowledge that this show was done almost fifty years ago. Different production values and all that. So I've been trying to view as if I was watching in 1967 and quit focusing so much on stuff that wouldn't make sense today. 

    There's been really good episodes (The City on the Edge of Forever, The Devil in the Dark) and crappy episodes (Conscience of the King, The Alternative Factor), and it's kinda cool to be watching the show and seeing the universe that births the other shows being written and set in place. 

    For a show done in the sixties, it's nice to see things that were out of the ordinary or taboo in real life, like all races being equal. And a Russian!? Although women are still largely portrayed as helpless and the weaker sex. 

    The version Netflix has is the 2006 remastered series. It looks really sharp and I like the updated CG shots of space scenes and of the Enterprise. Many planet-side set pieces have wideshot additions to make some of the locations feel like actual places, rather than just a foam construction. 

    As stated earlier, I've been through all of Enterprise  and just into season two of the Original Series. Next up will be the original Star Trek movies and then I'll start The Next Generation and watch it's movies. Afterwards I'll tackle Deep Space Nine and conclude with Voyager. As an epilogue, I'll re-watch J.J. Abrams' reboot and it's surely-to-be-released-by-then sequel. 

    If there is any interest in this topic, I'll keep a running list of thoughts and observations as I progress. If no one cares, I'll let it fade away into a nerd encrusted oblivion. 

    These are my voyages. 
     
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  2. used44

    used44 Forum Moderator
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    avclub.com has wonderful "TV Club" recaps and reviews of every episode that really kept me going when I was doing the long trek through TNG. Check it out.

    I also recent watched all the movies. Like all of them in the past year. Fun stuff.
     
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  3. NickKmet

    NickKmet Rookie

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    I'm going to have to disagree with you on this. Season 1 was mediocre, season 2 was atrocious, season 3 was trying too hard to be the dominion war from DS9 and became tiresome, season 4 was the best step the series took. Sure, there could have been more stand alone episodes, but the 2 and 3 episode arcs really gave the series its first chance to tell compelling stories. As somebody who watched enterprise as it aired, this was my impression then, and my impression now. I've seen the whole series at least 3 times, and the most memorable stories came from season 4. Just my opinion though.

    While I'm not as big of a trekkie as my brother, I have seen every episode of the original series at least twice, TNG 3 times, DS9 5 times, and voyager 4 times. So I've been around the block on star trek. I am interested to hear what you have to say about the shows though, it's always great to get a different perspective on star trek.


    One technical thing to note, and this really just shows how nerdy I am, but the warp scale is completely different between the original series and the rest of the shows. Warp factors do not translate to the numbers assigned in TNG. They devised a different scale before TNG went on the air.
     
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  4. Paradox

    Paradox Soaring Phoenix

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    I just tend to look for the positives in something and overlook most negatives. I'll always like Enterprise.

    I know what you mean about the warp scale. One episode I watched earlier, 'The Changeling', had orbs of energy being fired at Enterprise at Warp 15. Later on, the probe brought onboard increased ship speed up to Warp 11.
     
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  5. NickKmet

    NickKmet Rookie

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    I do have a soft spot for Enterprise. On the whole, it tends to be derided far more than it deserves. I mean, season 2 of TNG is terrible most of the time. Voyager is pretty bad later on in the show.Even the original series had serious problems after the first season. The only series I find few faults with is DS9. It really is the best in my opinion. It has the best character development, the most logical character development, the best stories, and the best discussions of topics that are contemporary.
     
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  6. Paradox

    Paradox Soaring Phoenix

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    One thing I've noticed about the Original Series are it's sometimes laughable fight scenes. I can't really put it all on Star Trek; most westerns of the day had poor fight choreography. Wiffed punches, odd scene cuts, obvious stunt men. Were the actors so fragile as they couldn't take a slam against a set wall or throw a fake punch to the gut? I just finished 'Mirror, Mirror'. In the fight with Bizzaro-Spock, I swear in a couple of spots that Spock is a black guy in white-face makeup.
     
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  7. MasterRabbi

    MasterRabbi Rookie

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    I couldn't take Enterprise because of how much fake-science was in the show. It seemed they made a point of explaining EVERYTHING, and it just doesn't matter. Tech1 in Situation2 + fear/"Oh no" is enough.
     
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  8. NickKmet

    NickKmet Rookie

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    If you want see obvious stunt doubles, I seem to remember the tribbles episode having a good number of them in the bar fight. Also, Captain Kirk fights are the best.
     
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  9. Paradox

    Paradox Soaring Phoenix

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    Karate chop to neck! Karate chop to kidney! If bad guy doesn't fall down unconscious, grab door frame and swing kick to chest. Kirk wins!
     
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  10. NickKmet

    NickKmet Rookie

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    My favorite is the flying kick.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BPuOMDpiNtM
     
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  11. tigerlily521985

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    I actually really liked Enterprise. It wasn't my favourite, but I still enjoyed it. Very dissappointed in how they ended it though.
     
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  12. Paradox

    Paradox Soaring Phoenix

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    Just finished season two of the original series. Kirk still hasn't boned any alien chicks yet. 

    This season really tested my faith. There were some really decent episodes, but it also seemed that every other one dealt with a planet that 'paralleled Earth in development'. Such a concept is just too unrealistic to buy into for me, even for Star Trek. 

    But there were plenty of good moments throughout still. I'm ready to start season three tonight - provided I can tear myself away from Wicked's movie game. 

    I feel like this one is going to be an uphill venture; I've heard it's the weakest season. But I'll watch and judge for myself. 
     
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