Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

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Sandy
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Sandy » 16 Sep 2017, 20:02

Kolohe wrote:Sensor calibration - do you think John De Lancie was still very good in Encounter at Farpoint, because he actually did have some good lines, and knew instinctively that some scenery chewing by some character is a necessary part of any Star Trek?
I thought it was unnecessarily over the top and poorly written. He was a bad retread of the villain in The Squire of Gothos.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Eric the .5b » 17 Sep 2017, 23:16

Kolohe wrote:
16 Sep 2017, 12:17
You guys got me convinced to just delete the premiere episode from my DVR; I recorded it because I was looking forward to because Galaxy Quest did the same premise so well and the new Star Trek series just seems to have too much self seriousness about itself, the exact thing that early TNG had.
I caught the premiere on Fox's site last night, and I was entertained. Will watch the second episode, later.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by the innominate one » 18 Sep 2017, 10:50

The second episode of The Orville was better in terms of entertainment value but it was still not quite up to par. I think MacFarlane might be better at telling not showing but TV and movies are supposed to follow the dictum 'show don't tell'.

And the idea of an all male species is just stupid. Especially if that species reproduces. If they reproduce they're either asexual or all female. That's semantics. It does not matter if the actor playing the part of that alien is male nor does it matter if the alien species' phenotype appears masculine by human standards. What matters is reproduction. I know he did it for a joke but the joke works just as well if all members of the species are female and there would be something interesting in having a female species that is masculine by human standards. There's just as much comedic potential in that scenario if not more.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by dbcooper » 20 Sep 2017, 05:08

Always a good sign:

CBS: Critics can't review Star Trek: Discovery until after it airs
CBS is putting Star Trek: Discovery under a cloaking device until fans get to see it. In a highly unusual move, the company is not sending out screeners to critics for its super-secret new drama, and the company is embargoing any reviews from its upcoming New York and Los Angeles premiere events until after the show debuts on air.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Highway » 20 Sep 2017, 07:29

That might end up being the new normal, especially with things with such a history and investment.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Warren » 20 Sep 2017, 11:04

Not sure what the dynamics are with television. Conventional wisdom for movies is that first weekend numbers make or break a movie. Is it the same for first episodes? I can see how not allowing critics to prescreen it could entice more viewers to give it a look. Though in the DVR age you can still record it and wait for the reviews to decide if you want to actually watch it. But yeah, you would only do that if you had a stinker on your hands, otherwise you'd want the critics to rave about it.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Highway » 20 Sep 2017, 12:40

The problem with that is that properties like Star Trek are very hard to get a fair review on. Who is the series for? Is it for you guys, who actually rewatch TNG and DS9? Is it for someone who liked the 2Star2Trek movies? Is it for someone who is new to the concept, or only has a passing acquaintance with it? And who are your reviewers? Are they those people? Add on to that all of the pedantic asses who will nitpick everything about the show, whether they don't like it or even if they love it. And it's not like they need to build up hype through reviews.

So I think the main driver of this kind of decision is to let people make up their own mind watching it.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Warren » 20 Sep 2017, 12:58

Highway wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 12:40
So I think the main driver of this kind of decision is to let people make up their own mind watching it.
lol. That's cute.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Jennifer » 20 Sep 2017, 18:26

the innominate one wrote:
18 Sep 2017, 10:50
The second episode of The Orville was better in terms of entertainment value but it was still not quite up to par. I think MacFarlane might be better at telling not showing but TV and movies are supposed to follow the dictum 'show don't tell'.

And the idea of an all male species is just stupid. Especially if that species reproduces. If they reproduce they're either asexual or all female. That's semantics. It does not matter if the actor playing the part of that alien is male nor does it matter if the alien species' phenotype appears masculine by human standards. What matters is reproduction. I know he did it for a joke but the joke works just as well if all members of the species are female and there would be something interesting in having a female species that is masculine by human standards. There's just as much comedic potential in that scenario if not more.
I didn't realize the Orville discussion was in this thread rather than the TV one, but -- yeah, so far the series seems pretty bad. [Though from what I've read in pre-reviews, that female hatchling is not merely a one-off joke but will be important to the next episode, wherein the all-male species wants to do a sex-change operation on the baby. Which is really going to suck for multiple reasons, including the ones you've already mentioned here.]

The problem with the Orville is that, it seems to me, MacFarlane can't decide if he wants to do a straightforward Star Trek TNG ripoff, or a rude satirical comedy set in space. So we end up with a Trek TNG ripoff with rude characters: instead of a character saying "With all due respect, Captain Picard, I fear your plan will not work," we get "Hey, Captain, your plan sucks ass." And that's supposed to be funny enough to carry the show.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by the innominate one » 20 Sep 2017, 18:42

Jennifer wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 18:26
I didn't realize the Orville discussion was in this thread rather than the TV one...
I think I initially commented on The Orville on the "it's not the size of the screen" thread, but got no replies there. The discussion took off over here for some reason, presumably due to the desire to compare and contrast.

I shouldn't complain about bad biology, given my recent criticism of Warren's complaints about movies not doing science well, but I think my complaint here is more about stupidity in semantics.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Jennifer » 20 Sep 2017, 18:55

the innominate one wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 18:42
Jennifer wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 18:26
I didn't realize the Orville discussion was in this thread rather than the TV one...
I think I initially commented on The Orville on the "it's not the size of the screen" thread, but got no replies there.
Same for me, though I didn't see your comment.

I shouldn't complain about bad biology, given my recent criticism of Warren's complaints about movies not doing science well, but I think my complaint here is more about stupidity in semantics.
I had a similar complaint as you, though, and I'm not even a biologist or ex-biology major: "male" and "female" only mean anything in a species which has both in order to reproduce. Maybe you could pull off an "our species only has males" joke in a truly ridiculous sci-fi satire -- something along the lines of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, or Rick and Morty -- but in the Orville, it just doesn't work. It's neither an outright satire nor a straightforward sci-fi show with comedy elements (even TNG had some comedic moments, usually along the lines of "Data tries and fails to understand what it is to be human") -- those comic moments worked in the guise of TNG, but so far most of the alleged Orville comedy fails. It's basically TNG with ruder, less competent characters.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Eric the .5b » 20 Sep 2017, 21:30

the innominate one wrote:
18 Sep 2017, 10:50
The second episode of The Orville was better in terms of entertainment value but it was still not quite up to par. I think MacFarlane might be better at telling not showing but TV and movies are supposed to follow the dictum 'show don't tell'.
Having watched those episodes, it's ahead of the majority of Trek shows, two episodes in. It's light, but it's snappy and at least as well thought-out as a lot of Star Trek, so far.

I'd go as far as say, intentionally or not, the roughness kinda works as part of a TNG homage. Even telling more than they should show.
the innominate one wrote:
18 Sep 2017, 10:50
And the idea of an all male species is just stupid. Especially if that species reproduces. If they reproduce they're either asexual or all female. That's semantics.
Eh, all-female has been done so many times in science fiction.

And the semantic complaint only works with certain definitions. There are species that practice alternation of generations, with members reproducing sexually or asexually depending on circumstances. Seahorse males gestate their young. A technological society could reproduce by a number of artificial means.

Given the stinger at the end of the second episode, a female member of the species can exist, so it's obviously a sexual species by most definitions. They just don't have any females. Maybe they had a die-off and have been stuck with alternation of generations, or maybe they use biotech to synthesize ova from sperm (something we're not terribly far from being able to do) and implant an egg to be laid.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Eric the .5b » 20 Sep 2017, 21:42

Jennifer wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 18:26
I didn't realize the Orville discussion was in this thread rather than the TV one, but -- yeah, so far the series seems pretty bad. [Though from what I've read in pre-reviews, that female hatchling is not merely a one-off joke but will be important to the next episode, wherein the all-male species wants to do a sex-change operation on the baby. Which is really going to suck for multiple reasons, including the ones you've already mentioned here.]
I dunno, doing an alien sexism story that doesn't do the standard "and by sexism, we mean guys are being oppressed" shuffle has a bit of inherent merit to it. It may suck balls (NPI), but it's got that.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by the innominate one » 20 Sep 2017, 22:25

All female has been done so many times because if a species only has one sex, it's regarded as female or asexual (really, a species lacking sexual reproduction should mean no sexes, strictly speaking). The fact that seahorse males gestate the offspring but are still called males is a hint that which parent of a sexually reproducing species gestates isn't a defining characteristic of sex categories. Yes, in most species females gestate, but that's not the definition of being female. Lots of females don't gestate at all.

The fact that some species (all plants, many algae) have alternation of generations is irrelevant to sex categorization. Some plants have separate sexes in the gametophyte generation, others not. In red maples, some individuals are only male and others are both male and female (I'm oversimpifying slightly here, but not meaningfully).

Sure, technologically advanced species could use other methods to reproduce, like cloning. But there was no indication of any of that, the character said he laid an egg. If you lay an egg, you're female.

Want to do something different and interesting for reproduction in fiction? Have a character reproduce by budding. Put a prosthetic or puppet on the character's body. Put the bud on an awkward region of the body. Have it talk. After a few episodes, it breaks free and is played by a little person or a child actor.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by dbcooper » 21 Sep 2017, 09:37

Akiva Goldsman, an executive producer of “Discovery” and a “Star Trek” fan since the 1970s, said the new series did not disguise the lessons and influences it took from contemporary shows like “Breaking Bad,” “Game of Thrones” and “The Walking Dead,” where actions have lasting consequences and characters’ lives are always at risk.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Jennifer » 21 Sep 2017, 17:52

Eric the .5b wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 21:42
Jennifer wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 18:26
I didn't realize the Orville discussion was in this thread rather than the TV one, but -- yeah, so far the series seems pretty bad. [Though from what I've read in pre-reviews, that female hatchling is not merely a one-off joke but will be important to the next episode, wherein the all-male species wants to do a sex-change operation on the baby. Which is really going to suck for multiple reasons, including the ones you've already mentioned here.]
I dunno, doing an alien sexism story that doesn't do the standard "and by sexism, we mean guys are being oppressed" shuffle has a bit of inherent merit to it. It may suck balls (NPI), but it's got that.
But "sexism" only means something if a species has at least two sexes, one of which is mistreated solely due to its sex. If a species has only the one sex (IOW, an asexual species), it is not possible for sexism to exist. So -- obviously I say this without having seen the third episode, since it hasn't aired yet -- at most, a member of an asexual species having an offspring with totally different-looking reproductive organs and wanting to "fix" them is NOT a matter of "sexism," but more along the lines of wanting to fix a birth defect.

It wouldn't bother me if the show were trying to be outright wacky along the lines of Hitchhiker's Guide (which goes entirely for laughs, and doesn't even try to be consistent or sensible), but so far the show has very clearly tried being a Star Trek Next Generation knockoff, only with various characters being ruder and less competent.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Eric the .5b » 21 Sep 2017, 20:45

the innominate one wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 22:25
All female has been done so many times because if a species only has one sex, it's regarded as female or asexual
Says you. You keep repeating this semantics, defining characteristics, definition, etc. argument without even specifying which of the definitions of "male" and "female" that you're using, much less why those would be best to use.

If we're talking about "female" as the sex that naturally produces ova, then it's trivial to make an all-male species: have all the female die off. (Just as you can have an all-female species by having all the males die off.) It may make it very hard for that species to last very long, but they don't stop being a sexual species or all magically become neuter.
the innominate one wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 22:25
Sure, technologically advanced species could use other methods to reproduce, like cloning. But there was no indication of any of that,
There was no indication that there wasn't; we have zero details on that. They're in a spaceship zillions of miles from any planet, they never mention "life support systems", but somehow they breathe, too.
the innominate one wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 22:25
the character said he laid an egg. If you lay an egg, you're female.
Again, seahorses. He may have not produced the ovum, but implanted it in his body to develop enough of a shell to survive outside of his body.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Eric the .5b » 21 Sep 2017, 20:57

Jennifer wrote:
21 Sep 2017, 17:52
But "sexism" only means something if a species has at least two sexes, one of which is mistreated solely due to its sex. If a species has only the one sex (IOW, an asexual species), it is not possible for sexism to exist. So -- obviously I say this without having seen the third episode, since it hasn't aired yet -- at most, a member of an asexual species having an offspring with totally different-looking reproductive organs and wanting to "fix" them is NOT a matter of "sexism," but more along the lines of wanting to fix a birth defect.
He doesn't go, "What is wrong with his genitalia? He looks like...an alien female down there.". He immediately identifies the child as a female member of their species. (And if they're as reptilian down there as they look everywhere else, that takes a good eye...)

That suggests female members of his species have existed before. Perhaps they died off or were gendercided. It'd certainly be sexism if occasional female births resulted in a cultural demand to re-assign the children as male.

Now, the writers may go stupid and suggest that the species are essentially hermaphrodites (we appear to see a breeding pair, notably) while insisting on calling them "males". That would indeed be silly. But I'm reserving judgement until there's enough actual information, as there are a number of decent, consistent explanations.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Sandy » 21 Sep 2017, 20:58

I had very low expectations of The Orville, and while they haven't been greatly surpassed, they were surpassed. It's not completely cringey-unwatchable, except for McFarlane's own jokes. Mercifully, they haven't lingered on those too much. I suspect I'll get bored of it, but right now it's a way to pass the time that the wife doesn't insist on watching with me during our 1.5 hours of shared TV-watching time (max) each week.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by the innominate one » 22 Sep 2017, 11:39

Eric the .5b wrote:
21 Sep 2017, 20:45
the innominate one wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 22:25
All female has been done so many times because if a species only has one sex, it's regarded as female or asexual
Says you. You keep repeating this semantics, defining characteristics, definition, etc. argument without even specifying which of the definitions of "male" and "female" that you're using, much less why those would be best to use.
Not "says me". Biologists say. Females produce ova aka eggs but not sperm. Ova are the larger gametes in a heterogamous sexually reproducing species. That's really the only definition there is. If you produce both ova and sperm, as some animals do, you're a hermaphrodite, not male nor female, strictly speaking. You don't want to take my word for it, that's fine. Look it up, give another definition or cite a reference. Or you could ask me to clarify.
Eric the .5b wrote:
21 Sep 2017, 20:45
If we're talking about "female" as the sex that naturally produces ova, then it's trivial to make an all-male species: have all the female die off. (Just as you can have an all-female species by having all the males die off.) It may make it very hard for that species to last very long, but they don't stop being a sexual species or all magically become neuter.
Trivially true, but they didn't say they were all male because all the females died. They're all male, but two males reproduced together and one laid an egg. Two males can't reproduce. Males don't lay eggs.
Eric the .5b wrote:
21 Sep 2017, 20:45
the innominate one wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 22:25
Sure, technologically advanced species could use other methods to reproduce, like cloning. But there was no indication of any of that,
There was no indication that there wasn't; we have zero details on that. They're in a spaceship zillions of miles from any planet, they never mention "life support systems", but somehow they breathe, too.
The character said he laid an egg. No mention of technological interventions. Maybe there were, but no need to posit things not in the story, when the more plausible explanation is the writers are going to try to make A POINT, so they wrote something nonsensical.
Eric the .5b wrote:
21 Sep 2017, 20:45
the innominate one wrote:
20 Sep 2017, 22:25
the character said he laid an egg. If you lay an egg, you're female.
Again, seahorses. He may have not produced the ovum, but implanted it in his body to develop enough of a shell to survive outside of his body.
Yes, I read what you wrote. Again, you're wrong. Seahorse males not only don't produce eggs or ova, they don't lay eggs or ova either. They receive ova/eggs (produced by a female) into their bodies, fertilize them internally using sperm they produced, and gestate them internally. If they produced ova or eggs, we'd call them female.

Possibly you're making a distinction between ova and eggs as in species that have internal fertilization but are oviparous, like birds, and some (most) reptiles. The eggs birds and those reptiles lay are not eggs in the same sense as ova (i.e. are not analogous to ova) because they have been fertilized and contain an embryo. In these species females produce ova, often informally called eggs or egg cells because that's the translation of that word into English from Latin. Once the ova are fertilized they begin to develop and the mother forms a calcified shell around each embryo, and deposits them externally ("lays"). These are also called eggs, but are different. The laying of eggs (either ova or fertilized eggs) isn't what makes a female a female (it's the production of ova), though I can't think of any males that do anything similar, though there could be. There are a lot of invertebrates and much that is unknown. Females produce the larger gametes, which are called ova, eggs, or egg cells and do not produce sperm. Males produce the smaller gametes, which are called sperm or sperm cells or spermatozoa but not ova.

I think there are some frogs in which the males internally gestate externally fertilized eggs. They're still males. They produce sperm, the ova were produced by a female. The father takes the fertilized eggs in his mouth until they complete development. I can't recall whether it's until the tadpole or froglet stage, nor whether it's the mouth-brooding frog or the gastric-brooding frog.

The best explanation the show could use based on what they've said so far and without resorting to technology for reproduction is that that species has the male gender (by comparison with human societies and for ease of integration), but not the male sex category. Either they are really actually hermaphrodites akin to some flatworms (whichever one gets pregnant first takes the female/mother role) or they have isogamous reproduction. In the latter case, there are no eggs nor sperm. Any of these situations could be played for both humor and to make A POINT.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Eric the .5b » 22 Sep 2017, 13:22

the innominate one wrote:
22 Sep 2017, 11:39
Yes, I read what you wrote. Again, you're wrong. Seahorse males not only don't produce eggs or ova, they don't lay eggs or ova either. They receive ova/eggs (produced by a female) into their bodies, fertilize them internally using sperm they produced, and gestate them internally. If they produced ova or eggs, we'd call them female.

Possibly you're making a distinction between ova and eggs..
Good fucking Christ. I only said this twice, explicitly. You're literally not saying anything not a single damned thing, that I haven't already addressed in previous posts. Learn to read for comprehension, and learn to restrain yourself from an eager little rant before you've read past the first sentence of a post.

I'm not an ancient Roman, you twit. If I'd meant shelled things that embryos grow in nstead of gametes, I'd have said fucking eggs, not "ova". Especially when there's an egg right there on screen, and I use the word "egg" in the appropriate context, distinct from "ova".
the innominate one wrote:
22 Sep 2017, 11:39
I think there are some frogs in which the males internally gestate externally fertilized eggs. They're still males. .
No waaaaaaaaay! Ya really think so, Illiterate One?

Fuck off.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by the innominate one » 22 Sep 2017, 13:58

You still didn't give examples of males that lay eggs. If the alien species is all male, where did the egg come from? The other male? He implanted an egg in his body from another male to fertilize it, then laid it? That still does not match up with any accepted definitions of male, egg or ovum that I can see. Possibly in this alien species males lay fertilized eggs, but that's worth some explanation in a science fiction show.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Eric the .5b » 22 Sep 2017, 14:08

the innominate one wrote:
22 Sep 2017, 13:58
You still didn't give examples of males that lay eggs.
Don't have to.
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by Fin Fang Foom » 22 Sep 2017, 14:17

Can we just delete this whole thread?
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Re: Bryan Fuller is not the Star Trek showrunner

Post by the innominate one » 22 Sep 2017, 14:19

Why? Are you not entertained?
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