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[Discussion] - The Great Star Trek: The Next Generation re-watch thread!

Started By:
Sul-Matuul, Sat 23 Mar, 2019 11:48 PM
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    #1
    The Great Star Trek: The Next Generation re-watch.

    So seeing as pretty much all Star Trek shows are on Netflix UK currently i'm going to be doing a rewatch of the whole darn lot (yup i'm that crazy!Tongue Out).

    I'm gonna post a review of each episode here as I watch them and i'd invite you all to partake in the discussion too.

    This whole thing was mostly spurred on by thinking of how Discovery currently gets a lot of flak for being x, y, z or not being a,b,c etc. And I wondered to myself, could it really be that things like TNG, DS9 etc. were not equally as terrible in their early years? I know there were complaints of all of them from fans as I remember them from magazines (Yes! we had no fancy internet forums to argue on back then!!!). And I know that some of the early episodes of all shows were absolutely dire! But what came from those stinkers grew into something we all loved....if they did it i'm willing to let DSC have its chance.

    So i'm going to start off by delving back to the dreaded first season of The Next Generation this weekend. I picked TNG because it was the first show to depart from the initial path laid down by TOS. The TOS/TMP films were pretty close to that original series in that they had the same crew; but TNG was quite a change and that's where Trek took it's first big steps in a new direction I feel.

    Here we go.......Facepalm
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    #2
    S1:E1
    Encounter at Farpoint


    Plot Synopsis
    The sparkly new Enterprise D is off to Farpoint Station on Deneb IV, where the Federation wants to build a new starbase. The need to pick up 1st officer Riker there too. Suspicious things happen on the planet such as fruit bowls appearing from nowhere and cloth changing colour, as if the base knows your wishes and can create matter. Turns out the place is actually a massive space jellyfish being held "hostage" by the locals. Eventually it is freed by the Enterprise and meets a mate in orbit to fly off with.
    Oh...and Q turns up throughout to tell Picard and company they (humanity) are not worthy of space exploration and will not last long. This doesn't put them off.


    So the first thing to notice is that we can a nice new starship and they waste no time in showing it off with its flashy saucer separation ability. The actual ability is given a ridiculously glorified scene with dramatic music and stares a computer screens. Its a cool ability that sadly never got enough use due to budget issues, but it does seem to be a sensible inclusion on a ship with civilian families on board.
    Bizarrely though all the civilian crew seem to wear togas or ancient Greek/Roman clothing for some reason. It's as if the producers aren't sure how to decide what people will wear in the future.

    Some of the sets we see also are questionable in quality and it feels like little has really changed from the TOS days apart from new CGI in some instances. There's also some really bad camera work, especially when Q arrives on his hover chair in the court setting, and a few places in the tunnels below Farpoint.

    The inclusion of Dr McCoy is a nice way to tie the new series to what went before but it feels a bit forced.

    One area it does shine in though is that Patrick Stewart has some great lines and delivers them really well. He's clearly got the charisma to carry the role of captain, even if the plot is a bit iffy and daft in places.
    The only member of crew I really didn't get is Troi though. We know she is pretty pointless all the way through until Nemesis even, but here in the first instance she seems to be almost second only to the captain in terms of her importance and how much of an affect she has on the plot. It's startling actually, compared to what i always thought of Troi to see her as a totally different character who it feels like they had a different path thought out for in as much as having a psychic on the bridge makes sense.
    On the crew themselves there's also a lot of overly long pauses on their faces, as if someone on the production team thought it would add tension. It does really work and feels overly dramatic in places, especially the final scene.

    The plot itself is actually pretty decent. The welcoming aliens wanting Starfleet to use their planet fora base, only to have to hide that they hold a lifeform hostage for its power. It's pretty stable Trek plotting and a good safe place to start the series off. Needs some polish but it's fairly good for a first episode.

    Let me know what you though too.
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