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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek Movies > Star Trek Movies XI+

Star Trek Movies XI+ Discuss J.J. Abrams' rebooted Star Trek here.

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Old September 7 2009, 03:55 AM   #1
ssosmcin
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Should it have been a straight reboot?

I'm wondering if the film should have just been a straight reboot of the franchise rather than this whole "alternate timeline" thing. Would it have really made a difference to old school fans if they just treated this like a standard remake? In their effort to not wipe out the old continuity and keep TOS fans happy, they've left the film open to deeper scrutiny such as the state of technology during the Kelvin's era, Chekov being 17 while Kirk was a cadet (and an officer before Kirk) instead of 8, how so much could be changed by killing Kirk's dad early, blah blah blah. Everything that TOS fans (of which I've been for 42 years) enjoyed about the film would still be there. I don't those guys did themselves any favors by trying to keep it tied in.

Why? Because all of the nitpicks about character ages, technology and so on wouldn't be important. See, when I saw the film a second time, I liked it less because it didn't feel right. Because Abrams and his guys were telling me "Nero screwed up the timeline, but these are still the same people." It didn't fit, it felt forced. But treating this like Ron Moore treated Galactica made everything they chose to do fine with me. But then I saw it a third time last night and it clicked. I was in "remake" mode. Looking at it this way allowed me to swallow stuff which got lodged in my throat last time.

Did anyone else have similar reactions? Being an old geeky Trekkie, I actually found myself mouring the loss of the things erased by Nero until I just decided it was a remake and none of these characters went through those things. Obviously, according to the script, they did and this is just my mind playing tricks. But all of this made me think that making it a remake would have just been easier.
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Old September 7 2009, 04:00 AM   #2
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

I guess the most disappointing thing for me is I was looking forward to an "origins story" of Kirk and company, but this wasn't it.

It's not the origin of TOS characters at all - the core of the characters are changed and altered beyond recognition. Only the names survive.
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Old September 7 2009, 04:34 AM   #3
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

I concur, it should have just been a straight up retelling of the original, and let the cards fall where they may. As it is, they have opened a Pandora's Box of "troubles" for both themselves and us "older" Trek types.

To me it was a parody of the original at best, a good one at that, but a parody none the less. I would have prefered a clean break with established Trek... easier to digest I guess.
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Old September 7 2009, 04:50 AM   #4
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

I really liked how they pulled this one off, personally. It was respectful to those of us who were fans of Trek since TOS (re-runs, I'm not that old) but were still able to breathe new life into a struggling franchise. Look, I was very skeptical when I heard about what they were going to do. I started to have the same "Don't mess with my Trek" feelings I had when TNG first came out. But I pushed those aside, and went into it with an open mind. I was pleasantly surprised. I really think this new version of Trek has potential. I'd even be open to the possibility of a new TV series based on the new time-line.
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Old September 7 2009, 05:00 AM   #5
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

If Trek XI was a flat-out reboot, as it should have been, it still wouldn't have wiped out the old continuity. Parallel worlds and all that.
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Old September 7 2009, 05:01 AM   #6
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

CDR6 wrote: View Post
I concur, it should have just been a straight up retelling of the original
That's exactly what it WAS.

The thing that most hardcore trekkies fail to recognize (probably through unfamiliarity with other instances of this phenomenon; too much focus on Trek specifically) is that a "retelling" involves some changing/reorganizing/redesigning of events and characters in some substantial way. The most blatant examples are in anime series where often times the theatrical version is little more than fifty episodes of the series compressed into a two-hour feature (and also the transition from comic/manga to the big screen; see the various differences between Spiderman comics and spiderman movies). In sci-fi, it usually happens by completely ignoring the previous incarnations of the series and either vaguely nodding to them or completely reworking them from scratch. That the new version even makes reference to previous incarnations is typically just for the amusement of past fans; hence the "original" cylons of the old Battlestar Galactica make occasional cameos as "old models" in the rebooted series.

Having Nimoy/fuurespock is an overt nod to existing fans. Having it fit together in a time travel narrative is charity to the clique of extremely anal canon-wonks whose vast proliferation is unique to trek fandom. Beyond that, however, it really IS a reboot.
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Old September 7 2009, 05:03 AM   #7
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

newtype_alpha wrote: View Post
Having it fit together in a time travel narrative is charity to the clique of extremely anal canon-wonks
Which is charity that is totally unnecessary. See my previous post.

For example, I'm a huge fan of original Battlestar Galactica. Did I complain that nuBSG wiped it out? Of course not, because it didn't. The two versions can and do coexist, in parallel realities. Nothing is ever wiped out.
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Old September 7 2009, 06:56 AM   #8
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

Mr. Laser Beam wrote: View Post
newtype_alpha wrote: View Post
Having it fit together in a time travel narrative is charity to the clique of extremely anal canon-wonks
Which is charity that is totally unnecessary. See my previous post.
Maybe so, but it's certainly to be expected when some of the people working on the reboot (Orci and Kruzman) happen to be fans of the original.

For example, I'm a huge fan of original Battlestar Galactica. Did I complain that nuBSG wiped it out? Of course not, because it didn't. The two versions can and do coexist, in parallel realities. Nothing is ever wiped out.
Sure, but NuBSG also included the original cylons as "old models" strictly for the entertainment of the original fans, without explicitly paving over the old universe. Technically, the Abramsverse doesn't do this either; there's no direct indication that the universe that Futurespock comes from really IS the prime universe. It very well may not be.
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Old September 7 2009, 06:58 AM   #9
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

newtype_alpha wrote: View Post
Mr. Laser Beam wrote: View Post
For example, I'm a huge fan of original Battlestar Galactica. Did I complain that nuBSG wiped it out? Of course not, because it didn't. The two versions can and do coexist, in parallel realities. Nothing is ever wiped out.
Sure, but NuBSG also included the original cylons as "old models" strictly for the entertainment of the original fans, without explicitly paving over the old universe.
Even if the old cylons hadn't been included, the old universe would not have been paved over. Same story here.
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Last edited by M'Sharak; September 7 2009 at 08:05 AM. Reason: quote tag repair
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Old September 7 2009, 07:04 AM   #10
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

I would have had more respect for a straight-up reboot, but I probably still wouldn't have liked that they saw fit to reboot the franchise. Still, it would have made it that much easier to say that this movie and any others it spawns had nothing at all to do with the original franchise. If it had actually been good I might've even grown to accept it on its own terms. But instead we have a time travel technobabble plot device that does a craptastic job of trying to be both a reboot and a continuation of the original franchise.
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Old September 7 2009, 07:06 AM   #11
Too Much Fun
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

Probably would have been better if it was a reboot without all the alternate reality stuff, because I thought that was the weakest part of the movie. I was loving the movie until Nero and old Spock came along and explained what they were doing. I thought without the silly plot points they brought along, it would have been perfect.

Then again, it would have opened a whole other can of worms since then we'd have no explanation for why the ships, uniforms, Kirk's childhood, etc. were so different from what was established in the original "Star Trek", but at least in that case I wouldn't be as disappointed when watching the movie as I was when Spock and Nero presented their exposition. I'd just think after, "wait a minute...", but I'd prefer that than being exasperated in the middle of the movie at how clunky the villain's motivation was.
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Old September 7 2009, 07:23 AM   #12
Tyralak
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

newtype_alpha wrote: View Post
Technically, the Abramsverse doesn't do this either; there's no direct indication that the universe that Futurespock comes from really IS the prime universe. It very well may not be.
Now you've just thrown a new wrinkle into things.
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Old September 7 2009, 09:14 AM   #13
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

I think for all intents and purposes it was a reboot. They just threw fans the bone of Nimoy and the lines about alternate timelines.
I've been a fan of Trek for 24 years (becuase of the original show too) and when they mentioned alternate universes in the new movie I thought "Don't bother with this! Just go with it!" As I thought they were doing great.
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Old September 7 2009, 09:52 AM   #14
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

newtype_alpha wrote: View Post
CDR6 wrote: View Post
I concur, it should have just been a straight up retelling of the original
That's exactly what it WAS.

The thing that most hardcore trekkies fail to recognize (probably through unfamiliarity with other instances of this phenomenon; too much focus on Trek specifically) is that a "retelling" involves some changing/reorganizing/redesigning of events and characters in some substantial way. The most blatant examples are in anime series where often times the theatrical version is little more than fifty episodes of the series compressed into a two-hour feature (and also the transition from comic/manga to the big screen; see the various differences between Spiderman comics and spiderman movies). In sci-fi, it usually happens by completely ignoring the previous incarnations of the series and either vaguely nodding to them or completely reworking them from scratch. That the new version even makes reference to previous incarnations is typically just for the amusement of past fans; hence the "original" cylons of the old Battlestar Galactica make occasional cameos as "old models" in the rebooted series.

Having Nimoy/fuurespock is an overt nod to existing fans. Having it fit together in a time travel narrative is charity to the clique of extremely anal canon-wonks whose vast proliferation is unique to trek fandom. Beyond that, however, it really IS a reboot.
Batman Begins should've began with the Scarecrow going back in time to the 60's Batman movie and altering the time-line to the current Begins/Dark Knight one. Adam West could've had a cameo.

Why didn't that happen? Because it's retarded.

Last edited by Shazam!; September 7 2009 at 01:53 PM.
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Old September 7 2009, 03:34 PM   #15
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Re: Should it have been a straight reboot?

I disagree. I think Star Trek has had enough "reboots" that fit in existing continuity that this one can too. All the other series are reboots in Star Trek's future. This is a reboot in Star Trek's past. Because Star Trek has always played fast and loose with time travel and its implications, this movie fits perfectly well with what came before.
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