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Subject: Thoughts on Star Trek Discovery? rss

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Daniel C
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I had very low expectations of it. Though after watching it, it was better than I thought it would be, but I still wouldn't pay to watch it.

It's definitely not in the Shatner universe, there was no character development other than the Capt, 1st officer and Science officer. Way too much liberal politics in the writing, it's too in your face for a show under the Star Trek umbrella.

The Klingons are definitely not the same as in other Trek series, they just seem to have used the Klingon name only for name recognition, if they would have called them alien troupe 1234 I would have found it more acceptable than having them labeled as Klingon.

The Vulcan(s) now have superpowers, I thought it was very out of place for Sarek to be able to communicate through time and space, ex machina? And the part about leaving, or number one having part of his katra was so out of place. So now it poses a question, does the JJ Spock have a thing for Black women, because of his father and his... step sister??? I can't figure out what is their true relationship. And Humans can do the Vulcan neck pinch? Just no, I didn't care for that at all.

Number one, is she Vulcan minded or Human minded. It seems to flip flop a lot. She was brought up on Vulcan, taught the Vulcan way, but she still is in touch with her Human side after all this time? Just stick to one characteristic. In the Rodenberry universe Spock was of two races, but chose to stick with his Vulcan side and not touch his Human emotional side, only when an alien entity took over his mind did he ever really showed his emotional side. Ok yes there was that one episode that he thought Kirk was dead and he was happy to see him, but it only happened once.

In the end, this is still better than Orvile, though it's still a bad show. Just not as bad as I thought it would be.
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I thought the pilot was Ok, but not interesting enough for me to pay $6 a month to watch the rest of the show at one episode per week.
 
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loved it.
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ZeWildStar wrote:
The Vulcan(s) now have superpowers, I thought it was very out of place for Sarek to be able to communicate through time and space, ex machina?


I'm not sure where you are getting this from. The series takes place ten years prior to the original series, so Sarek would be alive at that time. I have to admit that the episode does not really do a good job of making the timing clear, so I can see where people not following the pre-relase news could get lost. If anything bothers me about this, it is that I'm not sure what we gain by have Sarek in the story.

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And Humans can do the Vulcan neck pinch? Just no, I didn't care for that at all.


There is a line in the original series (or was it a movie?) where Spock says he has tried several time to teach Kirk how to do the pinch. A human being able to do it does not contradict canon, although there does seem to be an implication that it is difficult for them to learn.

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Number one, is she Vulcan minded or Human minded. It seems to flip flop a lot.


I didn't really see this as a contradiction. It is a new character who is not Vulcan by blood. She doesn't have to be Vulcan or be Spock. She can be her own person.

Opinion wise, I'm not sure how I feel. It wasn't bad and I would definitely like to see how the next half season plays out before passing judgement, but it wasn't good enough to get me to fork out for a subscription. My worry is that it feels a lot like a space action/adventure. I commented in the Orville thread that most episodes of Trek come down to morality play of the week and I don't get the sense that this is where Discovery is headed. While I think the pilot episode for Orville was awful, using the "morality play metric" the last two eps have redeemed the show for me. (I still cringe at the juvenile humor though.) Aside from story, I really did not like the camera work on Discovery. Some shots felt like they were putting the camera in an odd place just because they could. The camera rotation during conversations actually made me dizzy a couple of times; sure, it was great on West Wing, but I don't think the camera spun around quite as fast.
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Excuse me? Morality/ethics was all over the place. Star fleet ethos dictates that they do not fire first. Logic dictates that they should. The main character is punished for rejecting star fleet values under pressure. It poses the dilemma of whether or not self-defense can be preemptive.
 
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Rather disappointed. Despite what the show runners claimed, I didn't think it did a very good job of respecting the source material. Must they reinvent the Klingons in every new series? Why don't the uniforms resemble, at all, those of the original series when this is set only ten years earlier? It can be done, as the JJ Abrams films demonstrated quite nicely. Does no one remember that at this time in the history of Star Fleet, the uniform shields were supposed to be unique to each ship? Note the shield device on Commodore Wesley's uniform, as commander of the USS Lexington...



Perhaps more than anything, though, is why must we again have a dark and gritty Trek? Gene Roddenberry would be spinning in his grave if he hadn't been cremated to see another Trek installment that has foregone his optimistic, somewhat utopian view of the future and opted for yet another dystopian dirge. While the source material does indicate that the Klingons and the Federation had fought in the past, I didn't think the most recent war was only ten years prior to TOS. While I like space battles as much as the next guy, if this is going to be nothing more than another Battlestar Galactica style show where the stories will be grim and desperate, I think I will pass.
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davypi wrote:
ZeWildStar wrote:
The Vulcan(s) now have superpowers, I thought it was very out of place for Sarek to be able to communicate through time and space, ex machina?


I'm not sure where you are getting this from. The series takes place ten years prior to the original series, so Sarek would be alive at that time. I have to admit that the episode does not really do a good job of making the timing clear, so I can see where people not following the pre-relase news could get lost. If anything bothers me about this, it is that I'm not sure what we gain by have Sarek in the story.


The part where Sarek was speaking to Number one when she was in the brig. That's just really really out of place, this is Star Trek, not X-Men.
 
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desertfox2004 wrote:
Rather disappointed. Despite what the show runners claimed, I didn't think it did a very good job of respecting the source material. Must they reinvent the Klingons in every new series? Why don't the uniforms resemble, at all, those of the original series when this is set only ten years earlier? It can be done, as the JJ Abrams films demonstrated quite nicely. Does no one remember that at this time in the history of Star Fleet, the uniform shields were supposed to be unique to each ship? Note the shield device on Commodore Wesley's uniform, as commander of the USS Lexington...



Perhaps more than anything, though, is why must we again have a dark and gritty Trek? Gene Roddenberry would be spinning in his grave if he hadn't been cremated to see another Trek installment that has foregone his optimistic, somewhat utopian view of the future and opted for yet another dystopian dirge. While the source material does indicate that the Klingons and the Federation had fought in the past, I didn't think the most recent war was only ten years prior to TOS. While I like space battles as much as the next guy, if this is going to be nothing more than another Battlestar Galactica style show where the stories will be grim and desperate, I think I will pass.


There's a lot of politics behind this, I think Paramount owns the looks to the original series or something to that matter, so any new Trek coming out will not look like the Original series or their spin offs. This is why they had to change the look to this show. It cannot be in the same universe as the Shatner series, and it was just a lie or publicity stunt to say that it would be in the same universe.

I love DS9 even though it was dark and gritty, but yeah, early Trek is supposed to be optimistic which is why they strive for a better future. All this negativity is just stemming from political upset and these writers just wants to shout out under the guise of Star Trek. Which is why I'm so turned off by this series.

Sure '60's Trek talked a lot about what was going on politically at the time, but at least the writers back then didn't force feed us their opinions like this iteration of Trek does. That's the one true respect I gave to the writers like DC Fontana and the rest of the Original Trek writers, they let us decide what to think, let us opine on the subject matters. These days writers just only want people to agree with them only, any other opinions is wrong.
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ZeWildStar wrote:
desertfox2004 wrote:
Rather disappointed. Despite what the show runners claimed, I didn't think it did a very good job of respecting the source material. Must they reinvent the Klingons in every new series? Why don't the uniforms resemble, at all, those of the original series when this is set only ten years earlier? It can be done, as the JJ Abrams films demonstrated quite nicely. Does no one remember that at this time in the history of Star Fleet, the uniform shields were supposed to be unique to each ship? Note the shield device on Commodore Wesley's uniform, as commander of the USS Lexington...



Perhaps more than anything, though, is why must we again have a dark and gritty Trek? Gene Roddenberry would be spinning in his grave if he hadn't been cremated to see another Trek installment that has foregone his optimistic, somewhat utopian view of the future and opted for yet another dystopian dirge. While the source material does indicate that the Klingons and the Federation had fought in the past, I didn't think the most recent war was only ten years prior to TOS. While I like space battles as much as the next guy, if this is going to be nothing more than another Battlestar Galactica style show where the stories will be grim and desperate, I think I will pass.


There's a lot of politics behind this, I think Paramount owns the looks to the original series or something to that matter, so any new Trek coming out will not look like the Original series or their spin offs. This is why they had to change the look to this show. It cannot be in the same universe as the Shatner series, and it was just a lie or publicity stunt to say that it would be in the same universe.

I love DS9 even though it was dark and gritty, but yeah, early Trek is supposed to be optimistic which is why they strive for a better future. All this negativity is just stemming from political upset and these writers just wants to shout out under the guise of Star Trek. Which is why I'm so turned off by this series.

Sure '60's Trek talked a lot about what was going on politically at the time, but at least the writers back then didn't force feed us their opinions like this iteration of Trek does. That's the one true respect I gave to the writers like DC Fontana and the rest of the Original Trek writers, they let us decide what to think, let us opine on the subject matters. These days writers just only want people to agree with them only, any other opinions is wrong.


Well, I'm not necessarily sure about the political leanings of the current writers, but I will say that there is something inherently contradictory about how CBS has approached Discovery. In reading interviews with the show creators, two things stand out. Firstly, they say that based on the shows that are popular today, TV viewing has changed since TOS and that therefore how they approached Discovery had to reflect these changes. This includes the need for intense action, cutting edge special effects, and a serialized approach to facilitate the binge watching habits of today's TV viewers. Basically, they are taking their cues from Game of Thrones and similar efforts. Fine, I get that thinking, especially if they are trying to reach new (i.e. younger) viewers. If that's the case, then I suppose that lore/canon/source material is secondary.

However, having said all of that, the network then says that for the streaming service to be financially successful, they just need the dedicated Trekkers/Trekkies, perhaps 3 to 4 million total, to subscribe to the service. Wait, what? Your show creators have gone out of their way to change the ST universe to make it more appealing to today's younger viewers, and then you say that you are banking on dedicated long-time franchise fans to constitute your base of viewership. It's those long time fans (people like me) who care the most about the lore/canon, and your show writers are barely paying lip service to that aspect of the new show. I think it's that basic contradiction which is going to very difficult for Discovery to overcome.
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I will admit openly on BGG.

1) Going into the episode I was skeptical.

2) I was never going to buy the service, and wanted them to put it on Netflix in North America like the rest of the word. I was adamant, I would not help CBS.

3) After watching the series pilot, I bought the service and immediately watched episode 2.

Spoiler (click to reveal)
4) I realize I am a hopeless Star Trek Fan mb
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I didn't care for the look of the Klingons but really enjoyed the show and will continue watching this season.
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Here's some reviews about the first episode from IMDB.

Many of the reviewers are self-confessed Trekkies, and most of them don't like it.
 
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ZeWildStar wrote:
The part where Sarek was speaking to Number one when she was in the brig.


This must be from the second episode as she was not in the brig for any part of the show that aired on CBS.
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davypi wrote:
ZeWildStar wrote:
The part where Sarek was speaking to Number one when she was in the brig.


This must be from the second episode as she was not in the brig for any part of the show that aired on CBS.


Yeah, that episode ended...abruptly. Like, surprisingly so. "Mid-scene", as it were.

That was...kind of annoying.
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Haven't finished the first episode but I enjoy the crew interacting with each other and really want more of that. I would have enjoyed a series about their missions before they got to this time/place. I rolled my eyes a few times already but mostly I'm staying optimistic.
 
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claymore_57 wrote:
Here's some reviews about the first episode from IMDB.

Many of the reviewers are self-confessed Trekkies, and most of them don't like it.


Aaaah, this is along the lines of what I want - do the die-hard fans of the original series hate? If so, I might eventually take a look at it.


-edit- ooooh, and some of those are gems, but for all the wrong reasons
 
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JasonJ0 wrote:
claymore_57 wrote:
Here's some reviews about the first episode from IMDB.

Many of the reviewers are self-confessed Trekkies, and most of them don't like it.


Aaaah, this is along the lines of what I want - do the die-hard fans of the original series hate? If so, I might eventually take a look at it.


-edit- ooooh, and some of those are gems, but for all the wrong reasons

I was raised on Kirtk, Spock, and McCoy. I'm a die-hard TOS fan if there ever was one. My wife OTOH discovered Star Trek by watching TNG when she was old enough to be allowed time alone at home after school. (Four years' difference is for this purpose huge due to the timing.)

We think the designers of the show made a necessary decision to be true to the spirit of the show but look at previous incarnations of Trek as then-contemporary imaginings of the state of technology in the time when Trek is set. As for reworking the Klingons, hat's practically tradition by now. I remember complaining because the Klingons in the movies did not look like the ones on TV.

The storyline put Federation ethics at the heart of the story. I see no reason to reject it and so I was happy to enjoy the show. I intend to do so as it continues.
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whac3 wrote:
As for reworking the Klingons, hat's practically tradition by now. I remember complaining because the Klingons in the movies did not look like the ones on TV.


It's almost as if it's a world that has many different ethnic groups...
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Im not paying to watch one show. If i am going to pay i would rather buy the blueray. If it come out on blueray i will consider buy it.
 
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Until I read this thread, I was unaware this show was going to be on a subscription based format... I actually missed the pilot episode, but have to say I'm kinda glad I did, as I don't really see me forking over cash to watch a TV show... I'm curious to see how it works for them, though.

Kinda hope it doesn't - I don't really want this to catch on.
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I just don't understand why other countries will get Discovery on Netflix and we can't. CBS all access is going to fail hard.
 
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ZeWildStar wrote:
Way too much liberal politics in the writing,
Really?
ZeWildStar wrote:
it's too in your face for a show under the Star Trek umbrella.
Really?

Quote:
It's definitely not in the Shatner universe, there was no character development other than the Capt, 1st officer and Science officer.
How long after the first episode of TOS did it take before Sulu and Uhura had first names?

davypi wrote:
Quote:
And Humans can do the Vulcan neck pinch? Just no, I didn't care for that at all.


There is a line in the original series (or was it a movie?) where Spock says he has tried several time to teach Kirk how to do the pinch. A human being able to do it does not contradict canon, although there does seem to be an implication that it is difficult for them to learn.


If I recall correctly, Picard is also able to do the pinch after mind melding with Sarek, and both Data and Odo have used it as well (so it definitely doesn't seem limited to Vulcans in any way).

ZeWildStar wrote:
In the end, this is still better than Orvile, though it's still a bad show. Just not as bad as I thought it would be.
Based on just the pilot episodes, well I'd probably want to wait until I could see the second half of the pilot for ST:D that CBS has hidden behind a paywall, but I might have agreed with you. However the Orville has improved with the second and third episodes and I think could end up being the better show.
The Orville seems like a rather heartfelt homage with just enough distance to satirize some of the aspects of the Star Trek-universe that seemed dissonant, but were either glossed over or ignored in universe. ST:D seems more like it is cashing in on something familiar and well-loved without even the minimal effort to tie in to accepted canon. ST:D could have been set 50 years in the future from when Voyager would have occurred, but in the nu-Trek timeline (at least it could have with as little of the storyline as I am aware of so far) and the aliens could have been Klingon (enough difference in time and deviance from known TNG/DS9/Voy timeline to explain the massive differences in appearance and culture) or some other new race. However then you couldn't have the backstory for, what I presume to be the lead of ST:D, Michael, the most accurate description for which that I have read so far is "'human raised as a Vulcan by Spock’s dad' sounds like the character every GM running a Star Trek RPG has to reject before his player comes up with something reasonable." (though I would have preferred "their player" instead of "his player"). So ST:D wants the Klingons, and the ties to Spock through Sarek, but then can't be arsed enough to get a reasonable amount of continuity showing. Sure, the show presumably has time to explain all the retcons of why Klingons look so different by the time of TOS, why uniforms and communicator badges and ship interior styles look so different by TOS, and why Spock never mentioned Michael in any of the original timeline, but long range hologram communication was OMG, big deal, first of its kind in DS9, yet here it's just something the first officer has easy access to. It does take some effort to ensure that a universe spanning so much content is relatively internally consistent, but if the show creators don't care to, why should anyone care about their show?
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ZeWildStar wrote:


Tipped the wrong person. No offense meant, just wanted to be clear that despite the tip I disagree with pretty much everything you've said above Not in a "you're a big jerk" kind of a way, more in a "I guess you're entitled to that opinion... but... ???" kind of way.

Tip was intended for davypi above. I had multiple windows open.
 
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I originally posted this over on RPGGeek, but figured I'd crosspost here. I don't believe there's any effective way to do that on the Greater Geek, is there?

Anyway:

I loved it. I was giddy with excitement after the first episode, and the 2nd reinforced it. I'm fortunate because the 'Space' Network in Canada is airing all episodes, no All Access required. Having said that, CBS is reporting record subscriptions... so their strategy has apparently worked to an extent. Time will tell.

Stuff I loved:

* Captain Georgiou. Everything about her. I'm a Michelle Yeoh fan, but this character goes beyond my enjoyment of the actress. The way she replies to Burnham about being stuck on a planet for 89 years: "That's easy: I'd escape." Simple, fantastic. She is fun, she's positive, she's sarcastic. I adore her.

* Simple, clear writing amidst the usual poetic flourishes. "One word to describe it... wow", the above "I'd escape" -- these are things that sound real to me, like the flubbed grammar of "one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind".

* The costumes. Holy crap. Anyone who still thinks they should have been wearing 60s era pajamas with cardboard tricorders... we aren't of the same species. And that's ok. Because this is Star Trek. I'm sure we can work together towards a common goal.

* The Klingons. This was so contentious early on when set pics were leaked. Bah. They're fantastic. The look, the measured staccato speech, the incredibly ornate uniforms.

* Voq, Son of Nobody.

* The Giger-esque Klingon architecture. Wowzer.

* The opening credits. 'nuff said

Stuff that Kinda Bugged me, but whatevs:

* The Daft Punk cyborg. Kinda cute I guess, but it felt out of place.

* Doug Jones's Saru being afraid of everything, yet serving on a deep space exploration vessel -- as science officer, no less. I find it hard to wrap my head around how a species with cowardice as a defining genetic trait could be in that role. But Doug Jones is amazing, soooooo, we'll see.

* FTL beacon. That was a groaner!

Stuff I hated:

* Commercials

Full disclosure

I will admit that I have a vested interest in this show, and may be predisposed to love it. I don't think that's the case, as I'm pretty good at remaining objective about things. Anyway.

My partner, Heather, works in the wardrobe (aka costume) department, and one of our best friends, Jenn, is a builder (leathers, armour, etc). You saw Heather's work specifically on Captain Georgiou (much to my delight), and both she and Jenn had a hand in the Klingon wardrobe.

(They are not designers on the show, they do not get screen credit -- they do the fabrication, though both are extremely talented designers in their own right.)

Anyway, Jenn has seen and read all scripts for Season 1 because it affects her role as a builder (Heather has not as it's not applicable to her job). Jenn is also a huge Trekkie, and assures me that things like Sarek/Spock/Burnham are explained quite satisfactorily to her eyes. She finds things to nitpick like any fangirl, but overall she tells me she's really happy with how they've addressed a lot of the things that have been tossed about in fan circles as worth hating.

So anyway, if you enjoyed the first couple episodes even a little bit, my advice is hold on, give it a chance, sign up for the All Access Free Trial, and give it some time to grow. After all, TOS first season was AWFUL (come at me, bro! hehe*), and TNG took awhile to find its footing. To me, this is by far the best start of any Trek series yet.

Wanted to add, which wasn't on my RPGGeek post:

The "Grimdark" criticism, or focus on war, is hard for me to wrap my head around. There's very little that's grimdark about the show to me. There's plenty of humour and levity. This is very different than Battlestar Galactica in that respect. That show was about hope against hopelessness. This show is about hope, peace, and exploration, and reconciliation. It starts with war, because these races don't understand each other. Give it a chance. Also, from what I understand "WAR!" will not be the main focus of many of the episodes. Could be wrong, though, as I've begged not to be fed any spoilers.

* TOS S1 was not awful. This is a joke. I am kidding.
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Leo Zappa
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Sobriquet wrote:
After all, TOS first season was AWFUL (come at me, bro! hehe),


Yikes! I hope you are kidding for reals here! Season one had some of the best episodes ever, including:

1. Balance of Terror
2. Tomorrow is Yesterday
3. A Taste of Armageddon
4. The Galileo Seven
5. The Devil in the Dark
6. The City on the Edge of Forever
7. Errand of Mercy

I mean, these are classics and all from Season One. If Discovery can come anywhere close to the quality of these episodes, then maybe they'll have something. I just didn't see enough in that first episode to convince me to buy in, so I'll have to keep tabs on it through word of mouth.
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