Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

Post by MurphCID »

lsemmens wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 7:07 am
A Very good analysis, Portreve. I've not watched Bab 5, it is on my must see list, but too many other things get in the way.
Baylon 5 was superb, things that occurred in Season one has echos and came to fruition in Season four. The whole thing was written well, and is how a SciFi series should be written.

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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

Post by Portreve »

MurphCID wrote:
Thu Feb 20, 2020 7:46 am
Baylon 5 was superb, things that occurred in Season one has echos and came to fruition in Season four. The whole thing was written well, and is how a SciFi series should be written.
Babylon 5 changed my religion where science fiction and how to write/plot a story are concerned.

Today's episode (number 5) reminded me a bit more strongly of modern Dr. Who, and that's not a good thing.
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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

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Portreve wrote:
Thu Feb 20, 2020 8:16 am
MurphCID wrote:
Thu Feb 20, 2020 7:46 am
Baylon 5 was superb, things that occurred in Season one has echos and came to fruition in Season four. The whole thing was written well, and is how a SciFi series should be written.
Babylon 5 changed my religion where science fiction and how to write/plot a story are concerned.

Today's episode (number 5) reminded me a bit more strongly of modern Dr. Who, and that's not a good thing.
Which show or which season? Picard?

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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

Post by Portreve »

MurphCID wrote:
Thu Feb 20, 2020 8:18 am
Which show or which season? Picard?
Yes, Picard. It's almost like they are going for a more "fantasy" mode like, unfortunately, NuWho has done.
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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

Post by MurphCID »

Portreve wrote:
Thu Feb 20, 2020 4:46 pm
MurphCID wrote:
Thu Feb 20, 2020 8:18 am
Which show or which season? Picard?
Yes, Picard. It's almost like they are going for a more "fantasy" mode like, unfortunately, NuWho has done.
Ugh. Sorry, I had hopes for the show.

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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

Post by all41 »

Seems they keep beating the same dead horse, though.
Personally I think screenwriters should venture forward-not backward.
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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

Post by Portreve »

MurphCID wrote:
Thu Feb 20, 2020 8:24 pm
[quote=Portreve post_id=1765639
Ugh. Sorry, I had hopes for the show.
I gave NuBSG a season and a half before I quit. I can at least give Picard a season, and that's what I intend to do.

all41 wrote:
Thu Feb 20, 2020 8:38 pm
Seems they keep beating the same dead horse, though.
Personally I think screenwriters should venture forward-not backward.
I'm curious: what do you mean by "backward"?
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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

Post by ZakGordon »

yeah i was curious about that also.

Old stuff is mostly better. New stuff mostly sucks*. that kind of math ;)

And thanks for 'NuWho', is that what it is being called 'officially'? Kind of fits really (I liked Dr.Who back in the 80's, but not now).

*There is a detailed history about 'why' this is so, but unless people are desperate for...around 1000 words to read, i will relent!
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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

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I was a Doctor Who fan from the Tom Baker days which I saw in college. The new Dr.Who is just not my cup of tea. A buddy turned me on to Babylon 5 and both my wife and I were immediately hooked. I have been a Trekkie since i first saw it on out black and white TV in the 1960's. I even liked Star Trek: Enterprise a bit. But the gold standard of screen writing is and still remains Babylon 5.

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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

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ZakGordon wrote:
Fri Feb 21, 2020 1:39 pm
yeah i was curious about that also.

Old stuff is mostly better. New stuff mostly sucks*. that kind of math ;)

And thanks for 'NuWho', is that what it is being called 'officially'? Kind of fits really (I liked Dr.Who back in the 80's, but not now).

*There is a detailed history about 'why' this is so, but unless people are desperate for...around 1000 words to read, i will relent!
Much of the "older stuff" as you call it was allowed to be far more experimental, at least here in the U.S., though some things I've heard here and there suggest a different-yet-equivalent situation exists in England, too. Here's a short synopsis of what I'm talking about.

From the early days of Hollywood up through the early-to-mid 1960s, we had something called the "studio system" which, among other things, meant each studio concentrated on certain ranges and/or styles of film. Any kind of movie which fell outside of the norms of the studios simply could not get made, because it wasn't the kind of film any particular studio made.

From the 1960s onward, the folks in charge of the studios were retiring and/or dying, and the people coming up through the ranks were more focused on business, and making money, and so what happened is they were looking for every additional way they could generate revenue, which included tons and tons of experimental, gritty, etc., movies. Examples of this include Taxi, Easy Rider, The Graduate, etc. In general, Blaxploitation films also fell under this heading. From what I can see, tv shows of that era were essentially covered under the same mentality.

This attitude persisted through the 1970s, and probably into the 80s sometime, which is why we have so many cult classic movies and tv shows from the 60s, 70s, and 80s, and then far, far fewer in the 90s.

At this point, everybody wants to have the next Star Wars, but nobody wants to stick their neck out if Star Wars was just being made today.


MurphCID wrote:
Sat Feb 22, 2020 10:28 am
I was a Doctor Who fan from the Tom Baker days which I saw in college. The new Dr.Who is just not my cup of tea. A buddy turned me on to Babylon 5 and both my wife and I were immediately hooked. I have been a Trekkie since i first saw it on out black and white TV in the 1960's. I even liked Star Trek: Enterprise a bit. But the gold standard of screen writing is and still remains Babylon 5.
I started watching Dr. Who in the early 1980s, and by the time I discovered it, my local PBS station was just ending its run of the Tom Baker era, so honestly I mostly grew up with Peter Davison. That said, I've seen a great many Tom Baker episodes, and notably fewer Jon Pertwee and Patrick Troughton ones, a couple William Hartnell ones and a smattering of those from Colin Baker's and Sylvester McCoy's respective eras. I like some of the ideas (which I have heard about, read about, or seen interviews on in much more recent times) for Colin and Sylvester, but the truth is that by their time, the show was running out of steam, and the Beeb was desperately trying to ditch it. The infamous Mary Whitehouse took her toll on the series, but the problem is there simply wasn't the quality of execution and sort of focus on core storytelling as well as understanding what the show should have been about, and we can see it in the results. Production values took a nosedive, story concepts (where good) were poorly executed, and really the whole thing was just not good.

If anyone here is interested in examples of actually good (for the most part) Dr. Who stories beyond the years Peter Davison was there, I cannot recommend highly enough the many New Adventures and Missing Adventures novels which started coming out in the early 1990s. There's some damned engaging stories to be found there.

Also, for those who don't know, go check out Big Finish Productions. They have and still actively are producing a fantastic number of new Dr. Who stories, audio only, generally featuring as many folk from the Original Series as they can.
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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

Post by ZakGordon »

If you liked Peter Davidson (he was a good Dr.Who too, but filing huge shoes after Tom Baker) i think he started out in All Creatures Great and Small after a couple of seasons in? It's a vet series, but based in the UK just prior (at series start) to the second world war, and is kind of a nostalgic look back, but pretty decent quality period TV, if you like country-side vet stuff and regular (not heroic) stories.

Oh and thanks for succinctly putting my potential 1000 words into a much shorter form, and yes basically as it was sort of 'new' (tv series) it was much more experimental, and that whole period as you mention in the 60-80's period was also very loose and fluid in film (probably where the influence in tv came down from) with so much more allowed creativity and risk taking.

I'd also make a case for writers just being 'better' also (better and more fully educated in their art as well as societies issues also), not always, but just at a general base standard across the board level.

My brain (and shortly after heart/soul) just knee-jerk refuses to accept Ja-Ja-Binks as a 'good idea' or the god awful anti-star trek that Star Trek Discovery represents, all that is just low quality writing AND insulting to what it is meant to be inspired by. Just disgusting this current gen of tv and film creators and script writers. I felt like i needed a lobotomy after coming out of Episode 1 and watching New Star Trek for the first time, it was that painful to endure, and sadly the NuWho (such a great name) feels very much like that.

Maybe these are also all signs of our societies fall backwards? We are just regressing as a whole, and our art reflects that also?
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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

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I think the issue with the "modern" re-incarnations of Trek & Dr who is a reflection on today's "instant" society.Attention spans a re so short that people cannot hold an idea for a few minutes, let alone a whole week between episodes. (Remember that?) Early Dr Who was a serial format where the story progressed over a 5 show story arc. Now the NuWho (I like that name too), everything all happens at once, so the story lines and Characters cannot develop as once they did. Same, to a lesser extent with Trek. It all has to be in you face, action or you'd lose many of the younger generation who grew up on Star Wars. Could you imagine 2001, a Space Odyssey being released now? Even back then, it was ahead of it's time, but, very typical of the era.
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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

Post by ColdBootII »

Hm... The Expanse is not particularly in your face especially this last aired season and it was a bit of a slow burner since inception. Yet it is well accepted because the story is good and coherent enough. Picard is neither because they couldn't think of anything better and less silly to start plotting around than "Data's daughter" and his unselfish giving up of "his life and soul" :mrgreen:

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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

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lsemmens wrote:
Sat Feb 22, 2020 8:54 pm
I think the issue with the "modern" re-incarnations of Trek & Dr who is a reflection on today's "instant" society.Attention spans a re so short that people cannot hold an idea for a few minutes, let alone a whole week between episodes. (Remember that?) Early Dr Who was a serial format where the story progressed over a 5 show story arc. Now the NuWho (I like that name too), everything all happens at once, so the story lines and Characters cannot develop as once they did. Same, to a lesser extent with Trek. It all has to be in you face, action or you'd lose many of the younger generation who grew up on Star Wars. Could you imagine 2001, a Space Odyssey being released now? Even back then, it was ahead of it's time, but, very typical of the era.
I remember I could not stand watching Star Trek Enterprise. But then they started showing it in 4 hour blocks on one of the channels and I became a fan. A week between these long story TV series kills the tension and you almost have to review everything just to get back to where you were. In most instances I'd rather wait and binge watch the series in chunks than bit by bit trickling out. That's the problem with "Picard". Star Trek TNG was all stand alone stories, which were fine week after week. The new form of storytelling is lousy trickling out. One reason Netflix became so popular--binge watching.

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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

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KBD47 wrote:
Sun Feb 23, 2020 9:56 pm
A week between these long story TV series kills the tension and you almost have to review everything just to get back to where you were.
From that comment, I'm guessing that you are somewhat younger than many of us. I remember seeing William Hartnell as the first doctor on TV when TV was black and white.

As an aside, some years back, one of my nieces or nephews brought a friend home who was overheard to say "Your parent's must be RICH, you've got a black and white TV! Those same nieces and nephews are now well and truly parents in their own right, inf fact, some are now grand parents.
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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

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lsemmens wrote:
Mon Feb 24, 2020 1:57 am
KBD47 wrote:
Sun Feb 23, 2020 9:56 pm
A week between these long story TV series kills the tension and you almost have to review everything just to get back to where you were.
From that comment, I'm guessing that you are somewhat younger than many of us. I remember seeing William Hartnell as the first doctor on TV when TV was black and white.

As an aside, some years back, one of my nieces or nephews brought a friend home who was overheard to say "Your parent's must be RICH, you've got a black and white TV! Those same nieces and nephews are now well and truly parents in their own right, inf fact, some are now grand parents.
Yes, I remember Star Trek (TOS) on a black and white television set.

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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

Post by Portreve »

Starting off on a side-note, the reason ST:TOS's Starfleet uniforms were the colors they were was part of a way to help encourage the sales of new color TV sets. It made for a good marketing gimmick at the time.

At least within the confines of the science fiction genre, though it's probably spread across tv storytelling more generally, the influences of ST:TOS, ST:TNG, and Babylon 5 are still being felt to this day. However, and kind of getting back to the topic of Picard, we're seeing a rather different style of, if not storytelling per se, then tv production, and even though I am starting to have some issues with Picard, I'm not at all opposed to tv show runners trying new things. It's about time we saw some originality and genuine efforts to come up with new ways of communicating a story. I feel like we've been kind of stuck in neutral for most of my life, so having someone being brave enough to try something different is, I must admit, rather refreshing.

I have a great many issues with the more recent installments of several different franchises. Let's take them on, one by one.

Star Wars:

When George Lucas finally decided to revisit his monumental franchise, I think it's fair to say some of his tastes had changed, but also he kind of lost his edge. It's been well documented beyond anything I want to get into here, but there was a guy (can't remember his name) who he had talked to a lot and gotten advice from when it came to the mythos-end of things, archetypes and other stuff, upon which he drew for the fundamental elements of Star Wars back in the 70s, who had died in more recent times. I've heard (whether it's accurate or not, I cannot vouch for) that with that person's death, Lucas put his own, new, unfiltered ideas forward, and didn't get the push-back and aid he needed for the fundamental stories themselves to be good. More: nearly nobody in the cast, and likely nobody on the production end of things, had the wherewithal to stand up to George and simply say "No".

Once he ultimately sold the property to Disney, it became worse because Disney is not all about the purity and sanctity and the "everything that goes into them" part of the Star Wars universe. They are an entertainment house, pure and simple, and so the only thing they care about is making the movies entertaining to watch. The proof of this is the audience and fan reception of the films, particularly in the critical sense, has pretty rapidly declined. Yes, a lot of money has been made, but the spirit of them has been lost.


Star Trek:

Star Trek's movies have had a long and sordid history of being bad or good, often alternatively so. However, there was always the focus on the universe and the characters within it. The JJ Abrams universe of Star Trek, by his own admission, is far more about the glitz, glamor, and action of it than the substance. To echo comments made above in this thread, I don't doubt these movies cater to the gee-whiz-bang-boom!-action-sequence short attention span mentality of the audience. However, I am left with the question of how much of that is simply a self-fulfilling prophecy on their part. Looked at another way, the Star Trek franchise does not carry with it the monetary value of Star Wars, or Marvel or DC, which is why Chris Pine and others have opted not to return to do another. They feel, and this is particularly the case with Chris, that he's an A-List actor who can command a certain level of compensation, and the powers-that-be behind the Star Trek franchise don't feel the series carries enough value to bring in the kind of cash to agree to his terms.

From a viewership standpoint, I have not watched the last one, given the fiasco the previous two were. In many ways, the web-based fan created series of Star Trek Continues, Axanar (before Alec Peters let success and fan love go to his head and swell his ego), and Star Trek New Voyages are significantly better.


Battlestar Galactica:

There's no serious question that NuBSG is infinitely better, on the production and technicals side of things, than the original BSG. The acting itself is textbook, the cinematography and effects are top-shelf, the sets, the props, costumes... in every way, it runs circles around the original.

Except for the story and specific details about the characters. For those here who have been blissfully unaware (and how could you be? you're all tech geeks. what tech geek isn't a science fiction fan? :lol: ) the spats between Original and New BSG fans are the stuff of legend. Well, infamous legend. There were instances of physical violence, but mostly the online firefights which would take place, the hate traded at conventions, people having their computers hacked and online existences tampered with, are probably unparalleled. I say all that because I have no desire to see any of that revisited here. I am simply making the comment that the fundamental changes to the storyline and characters caused a schism the likes of which I don't think we've seen before, outside of politics, culture, religion, etc., all of which are "in the real world".

I am not a fan of the NuBSG (sometimes much more derisively referred to as "GINO": Galactica In Name Only) story line and character development.

It kind of broke my heart, too, because returning Galactica to the screen (big or television) had been the singular dream and passion of the now-late Richard Hatch (Original BSG Apollo; NuBSG Tom Zarek) for many years. It can be fairly argued that, even though none of his efforts resulted in his ideas being used, what he did and the fan response he received from it triggered an interest in the property, which ultimately resulted in Ron Moore and David Eick being brought in to resurrect the franchise.


Doctor Who:

The original series had a legitimate excuse where its frequent lack of sophistication (in plot, storytelling, props/sets/etc.) was concerned... actually, it had a few, but the top ones were: it was slotted as a children-and-families type of show and was given a budget accordingly (which is to say, a nothing budget for a science fiction series); the writing of shows throughout that period was not remotely as sophisticated as the stories of today; and frankly, the public didn't demand better.

However, none of that is any longer the case with the new (2004-) series. On the technical side of the house, it has everything it could have ever wanted. Budget and means of production are what would be the wet dream of darned near everyone who ever worked on the classic series.

But in spite of it all, all of the showrunners, from Russel T. Davies onward, has utterly misread history and misunderstood the lesson: Dr. Who is not and never was a beloved fixture of the British public because of its lack of sophistication; it was beloved because of the story ideas and characters.

I've often said I think the most fundamental level of the storytelling aspect of the Dr. Who universe should be one of Sir Arthur C. Clarke's laws: Any science, sufficiently advanced, is indistinguishable from magic. It's not that anything should be magical or mystical or whatever like that in the "how things work" department, but rather it should be looked at from the standpoint of what Benjamin Franklin's, or Thomas Jefferson's, or any of a zillion others' reactions would be if they came forward in time and saw airplanes flying, or people Facetiming on smart phones.
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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

Post by lsemmens »

A very good analysis, Portreve. You are definitely more "nerdy" than I. :D
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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

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Good post, and I generally agree. I was never a BSG fan, even back in the day though.

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Re: Star Trek: Picard... who here is planning on watching it?

Post by MurphCID »

Good post, and I generally agree. I was never a BSG fan, even back in the day though.

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