Star Trek Wankery

Music, books, movies, TV, games, hobbies, food, and potent potables. And forum games! Pour a drink, put on your smoking jacket, light a pipe (of whatever), and settle in.
Post Reply
User avatar
Eric the .5b
Posts: 11114
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 16:29

Star Trek Wankery

Post by Eric the .5b » 13 Jul 2010, 13:31

To save "Re: What are YOU looking at?" and dhex's patience.
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
"Cyberpunk never really gave the government enough credit for their ability to secure a favorable prenup during the Corporate-State wedding." - Shem

User avatar
Hugh Akston
Posts: 17001
Joined: 05 May 2010, 15:51
Location: El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora Reina de los Angeles

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Hugh Akston » 13 Jul 2010, 13:36

Eric the .5b wrote:
Fin Fang Foom wrote:
Quark: I think I figured out why humans don't like Ferengi—
Sisko: Not now, Quark.
Quark: The way I see it, humans used to be a lot like Ferengi: greedy, acquisitive, interested only in profit. We're a constant reminder of a part of your past you'd like to forget.
Sisko: Quark, we don't have time for this.
Quark: You're overlooking something, Commander. Humans used to be a lot worse than Ferengi. Slavery, concentration camps, interstellar war; we have nothing in our past that approaches that kind of barbarism. You see? We're nothing like you. We're better.
That's right Quark, stick it to the man.
I remember an interview with Armin Shimerman where he said he wanted to do an episode that tried to acknowledge that Quark wasn't merely a grubby merchant, but a guy with a different morality that he actually believed in. Instead of going the "the alien gets pulled to the warm, fuzzy, Federation side of the Force despite his upbringing" route, he wanted to have Quark put his foot down and be seriously morally horrified at some solution the humans were perfectly fine with. Despite the really neat moments of DS9, I don't think they ever did.
See, it's for things like this that I think DS9 was Star Trek's apex. It took a more cynical/skeptical view of the Trek verse. People were ambivalent about Bajor joining the Federation, Sisko had to worry about keeping commerce and a sense of community on the station, Bashir was the product of illegal genetic manipulation, the Federation showed its dark side with Section 31. In addition to the well-worn Star Trek tropes, DS9 tested the premises of thie utopian dream that was the Federation. Also, the James Bond episode was classic.
"Is a Lulztopia the best we can hope for?!?" ~Taktix®
"Inexplicably cockfighting monsters that live in your pants" ~Jadagul

User avatar
dbcooper
Posts: 17886
Joined: 05 May 2010, 15:40

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by dbcooper » 13 Jul 2010, 13:54

Hugh Akston wrote:
Eric the .5b wrote:
Fin Fang Foom wrote:
Quark: I think I figured out why humans don't like Ferengi—
Sisko: Not now, Quark.
Quark: The way I see it, humans used to be a lot like Ferengi: greedy, acquisitive, interested only in profit. We're a constant reminder of a part of your past you'd like to forget.
Sisko: Quark, we don't have time for this.
Quark: You're overlooking something, Commander. Humans used to be a lot worse than Ferengi. Slavery, concentration camps, interstellar war; we have nothing in our past that approaches that kind of barbarism. You see? We're nothing like you. We're better.
That's right Quark, stick it to the man.
I remember an interview with Armin Shimerman where he said he wanted to do an episode that tried to acknowledge that Quark wasn't merely a grubby merchant, but a guy with a different morality that he actually believed in. Instead of going the "the alien gets pulled to the warm, fuzzy, Federation side of the Force despite his upbringing" route, he wanted to have Quark put his foot down and be seriously morally horrified at some solution the humans were perfectly fine with. Despite the really neat moments of DS9, I don't think they ever did.
See, it's for things like this that I think DS9 was Star Trek's apex. It took a more cynical/skeptical view of the Trek verse. People were ambivalent about Bajor joining the Federation, Sisko had to worry about keeping commerce and a sense of community on the station, Bashir was the product of illegal genetic manipulation, the Federation showed its dark side with Section 31. In addition to the well-worn Star Trek tropes, DS9 tested the premises of thie utopian dream that was the Federation. Also, the James Bond episode was classic.
It's always interesting to take a society that purports itself to be highly ethical and successful and subject it to a grave threat, to see what it will do/what values it will compromise for self preservation.

And Colm Meany could act, which made episodes like the accelerated-time imprisonment one quite compelling.
Slip inside a sleeping bag.

User avatar
Hugh Akston
Posts: 17001
Joined: 05 May 2010, 15:51
Location: El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora Reina de los Angeles

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Hugh Akston » 13 Jul 2010, 14:02

dbcooper wrote:And Colm Meany could act, which made episodes like the accelerated-time imprisonment one quite compelling.
Yes. To bring the discussion full circle back to racism in Federation, the episode of TNG where the Enterprise is chasing the rogue captain is one of the bestest, most heart-breakingest episodes in the Trek canon. Largely due to Meany's performance.

O'Brien: I don't hate you, Cardassian. I hate what I became because of you.
"Is a Lulztopia the best we can hope for?!?" ~Taktix®
"Inexplicably cockfighting monsters that live in your pants" ~Jadagul

User avatar
Eric the .5b
Posts: 11114
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 16:29

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Eric the .5b » 13 Jul 2010, 14:17

I really liked DS9. They were far more ambitious with it than the other revival series, and usually much more successful. It was the show that actually came closest to presenting the Federation as a society - and one among other societies. Mind, we saw very little of the Federation that didn't look like, well, Future America, but they at least got there.

Civilians had roles other than as guest stars who had to get with the program. The commander/captain was American again (baseball-loving and all), but most of the primary cast were aliens, many of whom were in no rush to be rescued from their societies by the Federation. Long-standing social problems took more than an impassioned speech by an outsider to resolve. Half the characters had issues bigger than "We used to date." Villains played deeper games. There was tension between the Bajorans' religious beliefs and the Federation people who were curious about the "wormhole aliens". (Heck, there was an episode where a character prayed for someone not to die - unthinkable for prior series.) One episode was a little love letter to the idea of commerce - and that it could not only get people what they wanted or needed, but make people's lives genuinely better in so doing.

It wasn't perfect - the whole speech justifying barring genetically enhanced people from becoming doctors, Starfleet officers, etc. because, "Uh, otherwise, Khan, man," was one of the weaker, can't-get-too-speculative moments. (So, bar super-smart people from the most challenging and appealing jobs they might otherwise go for. That won't push them towards crime, political extremism, etc...) But anything that gets on TV has limits. Add in the plot arcs, character development beyond characters trying to become "more human", probably the strongest first season of any of the revival shows (and almost definitely the best pilot of all of them), and you had a really impressive show.
Last edited by Eric the .5b on 13 Jul 2010, 14:25, edited 1 time in total.
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
"Cyberpunk never really gave the government enough credit for their ability to secure a favorable prenup during the Corporate-State wedding." - Shem

User avatar
Eric the .5b
Posts: 11114
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 16:29

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Eric the .5b » 13 Jul 2010, 14:23

Colm Meany starred in quite a few really good bottle episodes.
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
"Cyberpunk never really gave the government enough credit for their ability to secure a favorable prenup during the Corporate-State wedding." - Shem

User avatar
dbcooper
Posts: 17886
Joined: 05 May 2010, 15:40

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by dbcooper » 13 Jul 2010, 15:01

Eric the .5b wrote:One episode was a little love letter to the idea of commerce - and that it could not only get people what they wanted or needed, but make people's lives genuinely better in so doing.
The Great Material Continuum I believe.

Nog actually became a pretty interesting character once he decided to join star fleet. Apart from the whole root beer drinking stuff ...

The episode where Nog was wounded was pretty good too.
Slip inside a sleeping bag.

User avatar
Eric the .5b
Posts: 11114
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 16:29

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Eric the .5b » 13 Jul 2010, 15:15

Exactly so, DB.
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
"Cyberpunk never really gave the government enough credit for their ability to secure a favorable prenup during the Corporate-State wedding." - Shem

User avatar
Eric the .5b
Posts: 11114
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 16:29

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Eric the .5b » 13 Jul 2010, 15:31

I can't be remotely as fond of Voyager and Enterprise, both of which I bailed on. (Though I hear the latter got a lot better in the last season or two.)

In its second season, Voyager started to get interesting despite the Gilligan's Island: TNG setup, but that got squandered fast. Enterprise lost me quickly because of the weird, oppressive atmosphere of the first season. It was supposed to be Star Trek with a sense of newness, but it felt used and claustrophobic.
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
"Cyberpunk never really gave the government enough credit for their ability to secure a favorable prenup during the Corporate-State wedding." - Shem

User avatar
Hugh Akston
Posts: 17001
Joined: 05 May 2010, 15:51
Location: El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora Reina de los Angeles

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Hugh Akston » 13 Jul 2010, 15:39

I never bothered with Enterprise. It just looked wrong, and every time they had a promo it was first contact with another species that the Enterprise-D had already had first contact with.

I would describe Voyager as being more like Lost in Space: In Space!. It wasn't as good as either DS9 or TNG, but it did have its moments, most of them involving Robert Picardo.
"Is a Lulztopia the best we can hope for?!?" ~Taktix®
"Inexplicably cockfighting monsters that live in your pants" ~Jadagul

User avatar
dbcooper
Posts: 17886
Joined: 05 May 2010, 15:40

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by dbcooper » 13 Jul 2010, 15:43

Eric the .5b wrote:I can't be remotely as fond of Voyager and Enterprise, both of which I bailed on. (Though I hear the latter got a lot better in the last season or two.)

In its second season, Voyager started to get interesting despite the Gilligan's Island: TNG setup, but that got squandered fast. Enterprise lost me quickly because of the weird, oppressive atmosphere of the first season. It was supposed to be Star Trek with a sense of newness, but it felt used and claustrophobic.
Enterprise's 3rd season was pretty good. It was the 1st time there was a sense of tension, urgency, or anything else dramatic.
Slip inside a sleeping bag.

User avatar
Eric the .5b
Posts: 11114
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 16:29

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Eric the .5b » 13 Jul 2010, 15:51

Lost in Space had charm that Voyager didn't. Strange things were treated as interesting, whereas Voyager was about boredly noting strange new worlds and new civilizations that they were passing by. Voyager retreaded TNG shipboard life (despite, you know, having half a crew of secessionist guerrillas) and plots. It maintained a familiar status quo with occasional attempts to get back home that never changed anything, which felt very Gilligan-y to me.

The funny thing is that I could see a post-DS9 series working without a reboot - it would just take a creative focus that wasn't about retreads and continuity porn. In other words, nobody who worked on the last few shows. :)
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
"Cyberpunk never really gave the government enough credit for their ability to secure a favorable prenup during the Corporate-State wedding." - Shem

User avatar
J sub D
Posts: 1741
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 16:36
Location: Way down upon the Detroit River, far, far away
Contact:

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by J sub D » 13 Jul 2010, 16:00

1) DS9
2) TOS
3) Voyager
4) TNG (Between Wesley and Deanna Troi it was hard for me to swallow)
5-17) Star Trek series' yet to be produced
18) Enterprise
EDIT: Oh, and the civil rights and basic human dignity thing too. - JasonL

My guess is this is the love child of some Objectivists what got excommunicated. - Warren

User avatar
Eric the .5b
Posts: 11114
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 16:29

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Eric the .5b » 13 Jul 2010, 16:10

Everyone hates Wesley. Wil Wheaton hates Wesley. I need to get his book reviewing episodes of TNG and talking about the production of the show; I read some of them when he was posting them free and was highly amused.

But as TNG went on, Wesley and Troi showed up less. (And after that temporary captain told Troi to change out of her PJs and put on a uniform, they kept her in the uniform...) Add in its actual virtues, and I have to rate it much more highly than Voyager.

Voyager was methadone for Trek addicts.
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
"Cyberpunk never really gave the government enough credit for their ability to secure a favorable prenup during the Corporate-State wedding." - Shem

User avatar
D.A. Ridgely
Posts: 17493
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 17:09
Location: The Other Side

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by D.A. Ridgely » 13 Jul 2010, 16:12

TOS was, of course, cheesy to the max. And while it did have real science fiction writers involved in writing some of the teleplays, by the time the shooting script was complete I don't think a single one of them thought the finished product was worth a damn. But the characters were great and the series probably would have become a camp classic if it hadn't become a geek classic first.

TNG, or as I like to think of it, Star Talk: The Next Conversation, was almost entirely lacking in dramatic tension, interesting characters or clever ideas. There was more dramatic tension in a typical Leave It To Beaver episode than there was in most of the TNG episodes. The only clever idea was the holo-deck but,let's face it, any civilization that had successfully created that real a fantasy playground would never leave the house, let alone the planet. The only interesting characters were the Borg, whom I was rooting for. By the time they introduced Q, Picard's. Mr. Mxyzptlk, it was clear that the writers were phoning it in. (Any species as advanced as Q's would have literally regarded humans as the equivalent of an ant-farm, which means they would have lost interest almost immediately.)

DSN. At least Sisko acted like a commander. Yeah, this was probably the best of the sequel series, but that's damning it with faint praise.

Voyager. Katherine Hepburn in space. At least, unlike Picard, she had balls.

Enterprise. Unwatchable.

User avatar
dbcooper
Posts: 17886
Joined: 05 May 2010, 15:40

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by dbcooper » 13 Jul 2010, 16:22

Q appeared from the first episode onwards, and some of the best episodes were Q episodes, so your comment is pretty silly DAR. There were some very bad episodes towards the show's end but the Q featuring finale was not one of them (it was pretty good).

TNG had some excellent episodes, especially involving Klingons, but these didn't really start appearing until mid season 2. i.e. after the death of Gene Roddenberry, which allowed them to tone down some of the "humanity rules!" crap and generate some tension etc. There was a lot of schlock, but that can be largely avoided.

The AV Club is reviewing all the TNG episodes in order at the moment. It's quite fun to revisit the series that way.

http://www.avclub.com/tvclub/tvshow/sta ... ation,102/
Last edited by dbcooper on 13 Jul 2010, 16:40, edited 1 time in total.
Slip inside a sleeping bag.

User avatar
D.A. Ridgely
Posts: 17493
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 17:09
Location: The Other Side

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by D.A. Ridgely » 13 Jul 2010, 16:39

dbcooper wrote:Q appeared from the first episode onwards, and some of the best episodes were Q episodes, so your comment is pretty silly DAR.

TNG had some excellent episodes, especially involving Klingons, but these didn't really start appearing until mid season 2. i.e. after the death of Gene Roddenberry, which allowed them to tone down some of the "humanity rules!" crap and generate some tension etc. There was a lot of schlock, but that can be largely avoided.

The AV Club is reviewing all the TNG episodes in order at the moment. It's quite fun to revisit the series that way.

http://www.avclub.com/tvclub/tvshow/sta ... ation,102/
It may have been erroneous as far as when the characters were introduced, but I stand by my opinion that it was an overall lame snorefest, As always, there's no particular point in arguing matters of taste (even though in this case mine is clearly superior to yours *grin*).

User avatar
Kolohe
Posts: 12701
Joined: 06 May 2010, 10:51

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Kolohe » 13 Jul 2010, 16:43

For a long time, John de Lancie was the only actor, besides (ironically(?)) Marjel Barrett that understood that 'scenery chewing' is not only appropriate, it's *required* in the oeuvre.
when you wake up as the queen of the n=1 kingdom and mount your steed non sequiturius, do you look out upon all you survey and think “damn, it feels good to be a green idea sleeping furiously?" - dhex

User avatar
dbcooper
Posts: 17886
Joined: 05 May 2010, 15:40

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by dbcooper » 13 Jul 2010, 16:45

D.A. Ridgely wrote:
dbcooper wrote:Q appeared from the first episode onwards, and some of the best episodes were Q episodes, so your comment is pretty silly DAR.

TNG had some excellent episodes, especially involving Klingons, but these didn't really start appearing until mid season 2. i.e. after the death of Gene Roddenberry, which allowed them to tone down some of the "humanity rules!" crap and generate some tension etc. There was a lot of schlock, but that can be largely avoided.

The AV Club is reviewing all the TNG episodes in order at the moment. It's quite fun to revisit the series that way.

http://www.avclub.com/tvclub/tvshow/sta ... ation,102/
It may have been erroneous as far as when the characters were introduced, but I stand by my opinion that it was an overall lame snorefest, As always, there's no particular point in arguing matters of taste (even though in this case mine is clearly superior to yours *grin*).
Go listen to your beatles' records old man! ;)
Slip inside a sleeping bag.

User avatar
D.A. Ridgely
Posts: 17493
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 17:09
Location: The Other Side

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by D.A. Ridgely » 13 Jul 2010, 16:49

dbcooper wrote:
D.A. Ridgely wrote:
dbcooper wrote:Q appeared from the first episode onwards, and some of the best episodes were Q episodes, so your comment is pretty silly DAR.

TNG had some excellent episodes, especially involving Klingons, but these didn't really start appearing until mid season 2. i.e. after the death of Gene Roddenberry, which allowed them to tone down some of the "humanity rules!" crap and generate some tension etc. There was a lot of schlock, but that can be largely avoided.

The AV Club is reviewing all the TNG episodes in order at the moment. It's quite fun to revisit the series that way.

http://www.avclub.com/tvclub/tvshow/sta ... ation,102/
It may have been erroneous as far as when the characters were introduced, but I stand by my opinion that it was an overall lame snorefest, As always, there's no particular point in arguing matters of taste (even though in this case mine is clearly superior to yours *grin*).
Go listen to your beatles' records old man! ;)
Alas, I don't own any records that were ever owned by the Beatles. *grin*

User avatar
fyodor
Posts: 6796
Joined: 05 May 2010, 17:18

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by fyodor » 13 Jul 2010, 16:56

D.A. Ridgely wrote:
dbcooper wrote:
D.A. Ridgely wrote:
dbcooper wrote:Q appeared from the first episode onwards, and some of the best episodes were Q episodes, so your comment is pretty silly DAR.

TNG had some excellent episodes, especially involving Klingons, but these didn't really start appearing until mid season 2. i.e. after the death of Gene Roddenberry, which allowed them to tone down some of the "humanity rules!" crap and generate some tension etc. There was a lot of schlock, but that can be largely avoided.

The AV Club is reviewing all the TNG episodes in order at the moment. It's quite fun to revisit the series that way.

http://www.avclub.com/tvclub/tvshow/sta ... ation,102/
It may have been erroneous as far as when the characters were introduced, but I stand by my opinion that it was an overall lame snorefest, As always, there's no particular point in arguing matters of taste (even though in this case mine is clearly superior to yours *grin*).
Go listen to your beatles' records old man! ;)
Alas, I don't own any records that were ever owned by the Beatles. *grin*
If you did, I'd have to think you were quite the numskull.

For not selling them, of course!
Your optimism just confuses and enrages me. - Timothy

User avatar
dbcooper
Posts: 17886
Joined: 05 May 2010, 15:40

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by dbcooper » 13 Jul 2010, 16:59

Kolohe wrote:For a long time, John de Lancie was the only actor, besides (ironically(?)) Marjel Barrett that understood that 'scenery chewing' is not only appropriate, it's *required* in the oeuvre.
Particularly when antagonizing Worf.
Q wrote:Eat any good books lately?

:)
Slip inside a sleeping bag.

User avatar
Sandy
Posts: 9504
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 18:03
Location: In the hearts of little children, clogging their arteries.

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Sandy » 13 Jul 2010, 17:00

DAR is correct, though too harsh on TOS given what else was on TV at the time (seriously, have you rewatched Lost In Space? Oh, the pain...).
Hindu is the cricket of religions. You can observe it for years, you can have enthusiasts try to explain it to you, and it's still baffling. - Warren

User avatar
Number 6
Posts: 2762
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 16:41

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Number 6 » 13 Jul 2010, 17:01

dbcooper wrote:Q appeared from the first episode onwards, and some of the best episodes were Q episodes, so your comment is pretty silly DAR. /
You beat me to it. I'm a fan of TNG, and can enjoy an occasional episode of TOS, but I never learned to enjoy the other spinoffs.
And Picard>Kirk. Period.
" i discovered you eat dog dicks out of a bowl marked "dog dicks" because you're too stupid to remember where you left your bowl of dog dicks."-dhex, of course.
"Come, let us go forth and not rape together"-Jadagul

User avatar
Sandy
Posts: 9504
Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 18:03
Location: In the hearts of little children, clogging their arteries.

Re: Star Trek Wankery

Post by Sandy » 13 Jul 2010, 17:03

Number 6 wrote:
dbcooper wrote:Q appeared from the first episode onwards, and some of the best episodes were Q episodes, so your comment is pretty silly DAR. /
You beat me to it. I'm a fan of TNG, and can enjoy an occasional episode of TOS, but I never learned to enjoy the other spinoffs.
And Picard>Kirk. Period.
I thought he meant it was doomed from the first episode. He was right. There was always much more promise than delivery in TNG.
Hindu is the cricket of religions. You can observe it for years, you can have enthusiasts try to explain it to you, and it's still baffling. - Warren

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest