RSS iconTwitter iconFacebook icon

The Trek BBS title image

The Trek BBS statistics

Threads: 139,233
Posts: 5,406,144
Members: 24,762
Currently online: 646
Newest member: PaulHicks

TrekToday headlines

Star Trek Online Adds More Voyager Actors
By: T'Bonz on Sep 2

The Wil Wheaton Project Axed
By: T'Bonz on Sep 2

Kurtzman’s Production Company Signs Deal
By: T'Bonz on Sep 2

Retro Review: Time’s Orphan
By: Michelle on Aug 30

September-October Trek Conventions And Appearances
By: T'Bonz on Aug 29

Lee Passes
By: T'Bonz on Aug 29

Trek Merchandise Sale
By: T'Bonz on Aug 28

Star Trek #39 Villain Revealed
By: T'Bonz on Aug 28

Trek Big Bang Figures
By: T'Bonz on Aug 28

Star Trek Seekers Cover Art
By: T'Bonz on Aug 27


Welcome! The Trek BBS is the number one place to chat about Star Trek with like-minded fans. Please login to see our full range of forums as well as the ability to send and receive private messages, track your favourite topics and of course join in the discussions.

If you are a new visitor, join us for free. If you are an existing member please login below. Note: for members who joined under our old messageboard system, please login with your display name not your login name.


Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek TV Series > Voyager

Voyager There's coffee in this forum!

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old March 8 2012, 03:49 AM   #256
doubleohfive
Fleet Admiral
 
Location: Hollywood, CA
Send a message via Windows Live Messenger to doubleohfive
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

I can offer critical commentary and analysis of the content of the show itself. I don't think though, I have the right to tell other writers how to do their job.
__________________
"You are the product. You feeling something. That's what sells. Not them. Not sex. They can't do what we do and they hate us for it."
--Don Draper
doubleohfive is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 03:50 AM   #257
sonak
Vice Admiral
 
Location: in a figment of a mediocre mind's imagination
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

doubleohfive wrote: View Post
The sky is blue. Are you going to question that? Probably not, because you can see the sky yourself.

Traffic in Hollywood is awful. Are you going to question that? Probably not. Perhaps you've been here. Perhaps you hear about it from locals or others who have visited.

"We wrote Kes off the show, because there weren't many stories left to tell." Are you going to question that? Of course you are. Because you (the general you, not you specifically, sonak) think you know how to write for television or how a character should be portrayed.

Let's put it another way: Would you tell a doctor to prescribe ritalin over buspar for some other patient? Of course not. Because you (again, the general you) are not a doctor.

Would you tell a fireman how to put out a blazing fire in a three-story complex in the middle of downtown? Of course not - you are not a firefighter.

There's a fine line between knowing what you want a character to do and writing it that way, versus understanding the intricacies of how a television series is written and run and all the other elements that get factored into it. Those of you railing against the dismissal of Jennifer Lien don't seem to be giving that part of this particular equation much consideration, and that's the point I'm simply trying to make.

1. The sky being blue is not on the level as a statement of "Kes is hard to write for." Silly comparison. One's a fact, one's a party line.

2. Writers are NOT like doctors, there is a history of successful writers who don't have extensive formal education in writing. There's no such case with doctors that I know of, the level of technical expertise is different. Silly comparison.

3. I have more to my skepticism than just disbelief for the heck of it. As I've written, Kes was NOT the original choice to leave, which you'd think she would be if she were so hard to write for. Secondly, there are a lot of good episodes that feature Kes, some in the third season, odd for a "difficult character to write for." And finally, I've seen nothing of this "Kes is hard to write for" stuff until AFTER she was dropped, which makes me skeptical.

Good reasons or not, it's more than just "I don't believe it because I think I could write awesome stuff for Kes."(I don't think that)
sonak is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 03:55 AM   #258
You_Will_Fail
Fleet Captain
 
You_Will_Fail's Avatar
 
Location: Trill, Federation World and Proud
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

Ok so we're not writers so we shouldn't dare question them whatever.

Anyway I still don't firmly believe that all the writers had much of a problem writing for Kes moreso than any other character.
However I definitely have no problem believing that studio research showed Kes to be a less than popular character on the show and that played a major role in ditching the character.
And considering what Kenneth Biller said about the studio being the one pushing to drop Kes, I believe that definitely played a much bigger part than her character allegedly being difficult to write.

"Kes was hard to write for and wasn't working as a character" sounds much better than "The studio found Kes wasn't popular among the important demographics, and Garret Wang is our poster boy for diversity".
__________________
My 30 Favorite Star Trek Episodes
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7U4y_sR7l7Y
My 15 Favorite Star Trek Characters
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofz1Zbpkxys
You_Will_Fail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 04:00 AM   #259
teacake
Admiral
 
teacake's Avatar
 
Location: Militant Janeway True Path Devotees Compound. With Sehlats.
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

doubleohfive wrote: View Post

Again, no. I'm saying - if people think there are more stories that could have been told, they should tell them.
I'm still waiting for an answer to my time frame question. People "should" answer me.

Wang is slated for the axe, to make room for an additional character.

Wang gets voted beautiful by People magazine.

Lien is axed instead of Wang.

Party line says "Kes was difficult to write for".

What's the time for all this? If she was that difficult to write for why did they want to get rid of Wang who only had to say technobabble filler?

Now what if we heard:

Our first choice was Wang because he is always late and has a bad attitude and not important to the show. Our second choice, which we tossed around when considering who to axe is Lien because Kes is hard to write for. BUT now that Wang is supposedly hot we are going with our second choice.

That would all make perfect sense. See how a time line makes it all less grey and open to accusations of lying and murder (oh wait, that was the TNG thread..)
__________________

"Damnit Spock. God damnit!" Kirk ST:V
■ ■ ■
Janeway does Melbourne
teacake is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 04:26 AM   #260
You_Will_Fail
Fleet Captain
 
You_Will_Fail's Avatar
 
Location: Trill, Federation World and Proud
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

I made a thread ages ago (http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=128891) outlining some DS9/VOY story ideas, and one of them did actually involve Kes. I mean she's the go-to for psychic stories, so to be honest there's a lot of possibility there. Its called "Into the Fold" and it involves Voyager being captured by a race of beings that uses telepathy as a weapon. They send most of the crew of Voyager into slavery, Tuvok/Vorik into servitude (as a lower level telepath) and discover that Kes has the power to amplify and extend their own telepathic abilities, so blackmails her into assisting them in a major military campaign. While the Voyager crew attempt to escape, Kes becomes more and more corrupted by the power she's gaining.
__________________
My 30 Favorite Star Trek Episodes
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7U4y_sR7l7Y
My 15 Favorite Star Trek Characters
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofz1Zbpkxys
You_Will_Fail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 04:28 AM   #261
teacake
Admiral
 
teacake's Avatar
 
Location: Militant Janeway True Path Devotees Compound. With Sehlats.
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

I like that story line YWF. It gets everyone out of the ship, it's gritty, it's horrible (the slavery) and I'm also keen to see Kes corrupted.
__________________

"Damnit Spock. God damnit!" Kirk ST:V
■ ■ ■
Janeway does Melbourne
teacake is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 05:45 AM   #262
spot_loves_data
Captain
 
spot_loves_data's Avatar
 
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

doubleohfive wrote: View Post
I can offer critical commentary and analysis of the content of the show itself. I don't think though, I have the right to tell other writers how to do their job.
Offering critical commentary and content analysis means "telling writers how to do their job." And that's fine. There's nothing sacrosanct about television scripts. The writers put their work out there for mass consumption - it's fair game for any sort of criticism we can throw at it.

You_Will_Fail wrote: View Post
An interesting snippet from an interview with Kenneth Biller,
http://scifiandtvtalk.typepad.com/sc...en-biller.html
^Good link. Here's the bit about Kes's departure:

When Voyager’s fourth season began, Biller and the rest of the show’s writing team had to deal with the departure of original castmember Jennifer Lien and the arrival of Jeri Ryan as Borg-turned-babe Seven of Nine. “It’s always sad to see somebody go,” says Biller. “I think the character of Kes was really fascinating and provided us with some terrific story material. I wrote the previously mentioned Before and After around her character and Brannon wrote a show called Cold Fire in which Kes explores her mental powers.

“So Kes was interesting in that sense, but I think the show needed a jolt at that point. We knew that we wanted to bring a new character in and, frankly, it was really the studio that was not so keen on continuing with Kes’s character. I think Jennifer is a fine actress and I certainly enjoy the episodes I wrote involving her, but that’s showbiz and that’s what happens. Things change, people leave and the show has to continue.

“I don’t know that we had to get rid of a character to bring in Jeri Ryan, although nine regular characters are a lot to service on any show. If we had added another one it would have taken screentime away from the rest.
spot_loves_data is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 06:59 AM   #263
Lynx
Rear Admiral
 
Lynx's Avatar
 
Location: Lynx Empire
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
sonak wrote: View Post
I don't see how Ms. Lien's shyness would be relevant to the way writers treated her character.
Perhaps because they weren't getting the performances they imagined? I dunno, but I do know several people who worked with her found her rather tricky to communicate with. Some actors and characters just fail to click with the writing team.

If there's stuff from long before her dismissal about the difficulties writing for her, then I'd believe it, but otherwise it just looks like rationalization.
As I mentioned, you can see them tinkering with Kes all through the series: her "elogium", the break up with Neelix, moving from gardening to nursing, discovering powers, pairing her with the EMH, then Tuvok, changing her hair and costuming, etc.

They really didn't have to rationalize anything about her dismissal. The producers had to let a character go in order to be able to afford to add Jeri Ryan. They narrowed down to the two characters/actors that caused them problems (be they discipline problems or writing problems, or whatever) and chose Lien to go when Wang got the "People" accolade. The writers say the character was hard to write for, and the many changes to the character over the years seems to bear that out.

Similarly, they let Gates McFadden go in TNG. Publicly, the character "wasn't working" and they recast for a different approach to the CMO. As we found out later, there was friction on the set caused by delays due to McFadden's very fine hair losing its style under the hot lights (hence the choice of expensive wigs when she returned), plus the eventual declaration from the actress that there had been friction between her and someone on high in production.

Similarly, TOS let Grace Lee Whitney go. Publicly, the character "wasn't necessary" and they wanted Kirk not to be tied down to one romantic interest. As we found out later, from the actress, there had been an addiction to diet pills, and ah... friction between her and someone on high in production.

sonak wrote: View Post
OK, so the fact that they were going to keep Kes and drop Kim would seem to settle the argument about how Kes had to go because she was so difficult to write for. Had that been the case, she would have been the first choice to go.
No, it doesn't "settle" anything. Wang was also causing a series of difficulties - supposedly not turning up on time, despite warnings, not being on hand to do the off-screen lines when a dialog partner was on camera, and refusing to do his "homework" shadowing the director when he was pressing to be allowed to direct.

When Wang wasn't able to be let go, they then had to choose another. The writers could probably see plenty of story possibilities for everyone else, and less for Kes. They'd already tried a range of stories with her, leaving perhaps only Miracle Life-Expectancy Extension to go, in order to avoid latex age makeups. Lien was supposedly already allergic to her ear tips, which is why they let Kes let her hair down.
Honestly, what you consider "tinkering" might be a strength for the character. They could write stories about her from many angles and perspectives. Compare that to Kim who remained "young Ensign Kim" for seven years.

Tales about Lien being a difficult person are pure speculation. Lien and Mulgrew were best friends. I don't think they would have been that if Lien had been difficult to work with. Besides that, if Lien had been a pain in the @** for her co-workers, someone would have mentioned that sooner or later. They didn't, instead all of them were sorry to see her go.

And obviously there were writers who liked the character too and could come up with good stories until they were ordrerd to be unable to write for the character.
__________________
Who'd let that cat in here?

Welcome to visit the Kes Website at a new location soon!
Lynx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 07:05 AM   #264
Lynx
Rear Admiral
 
Lynx's Avatar
 
Location: Lynx Empire
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

doubleohfive wrote: View Post
I can offer critical commentary and analysis of the content of the show itself. I don't think though, I have the right to tell other writers how to do their job.
As a fan, I think I have the right to do that since the fans actually are those who keep these people at work. If the fans abandon a show, then it's gone and the glorious writers are out of work.

As for critical commentary and analysis, if my analysis says that it was wrong to dump Kes/Lien, then I do think I have the right to express my opinion in that case.
__________________
Who'd let that cat in here?

Welcome to visit the Kes Website at a new location soon!
Lynx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 01:35 PM   #265
Therin of Andor
Admiral
 
Therin of Andor's Avatar
 
Location: New Therin Park, Andor (via Australia)
View Therin of Andor's Twitter Profile
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

sonak wrote: View Post
your posts on this seem to be "whatever the writers/producers say is right and good enough for me."
Yep. I've heard enough inside stories, from people who were actually there, to believe that what the creative team said they felt to be true, at least at the time, is true. These things are not decided on a whim, usually. Hollywood is big business and no one likes to get it wrong.

Jeri Ryan was a breath of fresh air for the franchise. A revitalised Kes was not going to have the same spike of interest.

Lynx wrote: View Post
Besides that, if Lien had been a pain in the @** for her co-workers...
When did I ever say that? I said that the writers were disappointed with the character and, despite numerous attempts to steer the character in very different directions, over three seasons, they were still unhappy with Kes.

Tales about Lien being a difficult person are pure speculation.
No, I know people who had to attempt to explain her bizarre actions at a convention to some very angry fans, who'd travelled interstate to see her. She's a very shy woman who continued to attempt to do conventions, even though she'd realised she was unsuited to that method of public speaking. And yet she kept accepting invitations.
__________________
Thiptho lapth! Ian (Entire post is personal opinion)
The Andor Files @ http://andorfiles.blogspot.com/
http://therinofandor.blogspot.com/
Therin of Andor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 04:41 PM   #266
sonak
Vice Admiral
 
Location: in a figment of a mediocre mind's imagination
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
sonak wrote: View Post
your posts on this seem to be "whatever the writers/producers say is right and good enough for me."
Yep. I've heard enough inside stories, from people who were actually there, to believe that what the creative team said they felt to be true, at least at the time, is true. These things are not decided on a whim, usually. Hollywood is big business and no one likes to get it wrong.

Jeri Ryan was a breath of fresh air for the franchise. A revitalised Kes was not going to have the same spike of interest.

Lynx wrote: View Post
Besides that, if Lien had been a pain in the @** for her co-workers...
When did I ever say that? I said that the writers were disappointed with the character and, despite numerous attempts to steer the character in very different directions, over three seasons, they were still unhappy with Kes.

Tales about Lien being a difficult person are pure speculation.
No, I know people who had to attempt to explain her bizarre actions at a convention to some very angry fans, who'd travelled interstate to see her. She's a very shy woman who continued to attempt to do conventions, even though she'd realised she was unsuited to that method of public speaking. And yet she kept accepting invitations.

Jeri Ryan did bring renewed attention to Voyager, but I think it would have been a lot cooler to see her interact with Kes than either Harry Kim or Neelix. And again, did she really bring them a lasting ratings bump or did it slide back to pre-Ryan levels after a while?
sonak is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 06:32 PM   #267
You_Will_Fail
Fleet Captain
 
You_Will_Fail's Avatar
 
Location: Trill, Federation World and Proud
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

No one is saying that Seven of Nine didn't revitalize Voyager. But that's pretty irrelevant to this discussion.
__________________
My 30 Favorite Star Trek Episodes
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7U4y_sR7l7Y
My 15 Favorite Star Trek Characters
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofz1Zbpkxys
You_Will_Fail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 06:45 PM   #268
Guy Gardener
Fleet Admiral
 
Guy Gardener's Avatar
 
Location: In the lap of squalor I assure you.
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

Revitalize is not the same as changed, and the ratings seem to say that she didn't increase ratings, they still steadily fell despite her amazing ta-tas...

She did nothing.

Jennifer was fired for a dog that wouldn't hunt.
__________________
"Glitter is the herpes of arts and craft."

Troy Yingst. My Life as Liz
Guy Gardener is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 07:33 PM   #269
sonak
Vice Admiral
 
Location: in a figment of a mediocre mind's imagination
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

Guy Gardener wrote: View Post
Revitalize is not the same as changed, and the ratings seem to say that she didn't increase ratings, they still steadily fell despite her amazing ta-tas...

She did nothing.

Jennifer was fired for a dog that wouldn't hunt.

agreed. I checked the ratings, and other than a VERY brief bump, they continued their pattern of slow decline and/or held steady. So yeah, she made pop culture a little more aware of Voyager perhaps, but she wasn't bringing in the big ratings.
sonak is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8 2012, 07:39 PM   #270
Guy Gardener
Fleet Admiral
 
Guy Gardener's Avatar
 
Location: In the lap of squalor I assure you.
Re: Why was Kes written off the show?

I just wonder if Seven did create a new expanding audience pool that was offset by the core audience abandoning the show faster than Sevens rump could attract new punters, so that by the end the new core was mostly nothing but swooning letches hopelessly devoted to Anika's double dees.
__________________
"Glitter is the herpes of arts and craft."

Troy Yingst. My Life as Liz
Guy Gardener is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Tags
kes, kim, lien

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 10:24 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
FireFox 2+ or Internet Explorer 7+ highly recommended.