Let us hope that the next Star Trek is equal to that task, and not just a shadow trying to fill up an hour a week of vicarious living through entertainment.
But that's what I like about it. Why I'm a fan of TOS far more than any other part of the franchise. I like it being big, brash and fun. The thing that sets TOS apart from the rest was that an episode could be serious yet be big, brash and fun. Big, brash and fun is why I love the Abrams films and could care less for the TNG films.
I watch TV to be entertained. If I want to know about people being tortured, I can just turn on the news. If the next TV series isn't big, brash and fun, I'll likely be someone who drops out right away.
Give me "vicarious living through entertainment" that's what I want from my entertainment.
TOS was certainly brash and fun. There's nothing wrong with that. Art is very subjective and hence why what the critics may like is a big departure from popular demand.
And to be honest, that's what's paid the bills all up through the last series, because popular demand plus hardcore Star Trek fans kept the market share high enough to keep the project commercially viable.
Most people seek only to be entertained. The problem though with that is a lot more selection in the post-Scify era where there are niche science fiction stations available.
In the days of the dinosaurs, there was precious little that was even close to science fiction. It was more speculative fiction like the Twilight Zone or the Outer Limits or even the later Night Gallery. That's no longer the case, where there's a sense of futurism in lots of shows, and many have science fiction elements (with sadly precious little realism at times).
There's always shows like Revolution or Real Humans, but these just don't have the mythos and history of Star Trek, so I don't know of what lasting value they'll have. Will people be watching them over forty years later? I doubt it.
But the biggest issue is not this really. It's how to get commerical support to make the show after all. People don't pay for television except for cable and satelite providers.
What's rapidly changed post-Enterprise is streaming video. Because that's commericial free, then there's little reason for a company to provide commericals to pay for television. They'll just be skipped or fast forwarded if people use Tivo.
That's a major issue for niche marketing. Who is actually sitting down to watch a show as it is broadcast? Some people do it for things like a season finale when they just can't wait long enough to replay it back. Others are too busy to sit down and watch a show in that antiquated manner.
As such, I think it's best that Star Trek adapt and use vehicles like cable's traditional movie channels like HBO and Showtime, in order to have a decent budget and much better and more accountable writers.
In films there's product placement, but that's obviously not going to work well within the environment of Star Trek. Coke in the 24th Century? Probably not...
Strangely there's been some success with shows created and sponsored by companies like Netflicks, which surprises me that there are adequate consumers to pay for it. I would think that the vast amount of folks download these by less than legal means, wait for episodes to be loaded to video sites like Youtube for brief periods (and taken down again), and so only a portion of consumer support is paying for the series.
I recall that Breaking Bad producers mentioned this fact as actually critical for the initial success because they realized far more people were watching than any data told to them by Nielsen ratings (if that's actually still around and not named something else).
Young people don't watch television. Many have a computer and an Iphone and watch shows that way when they desire. That knocks out network television and makes it largely irrelevant to anyone who's younger than 55.
In technology history, there were major discussions about the distance of the space from a viewer to a television screen versus a computer especially a laptop. That's evolved to where the television really is superfluous. At one time they were trying to combine the two devices out of desperation because television manufacturers saw the handwriting on the wall. What saved that industry was wide screen giant tvs, something that changed to flat screens, for there was a brief period in which it was everyone's goal to own a monster television to watch films and sports events besides the other three tvs in each home.
From history we know that people during the Great Depression watched films for vicarious entertainment because they couldn't afford to purchase anything. But that was when watching a film meant a few coins. That's hardly the same today where it can be hugely expensive. People are having a hard time finding the money to put food on the table, so many of these folks will eventually cut their cable bills. The money won't be there for it.
This means television is a very old paradigm and must change and the shows that are featured on it must change to fit that new format.
That's not unique to television, for movie theatres are struggling too. I can remember sitting down in the late 1990s to watch the Godfather in an aging and elaborately decorated cinema, something that probably doesn't occur anymore. It was more akin to a theatre for plays than a movie house. I doubt people will even attend films in the future unless they're giant 3D specialty films that require specialized equipment to view.