RSS iconTwitter iconFacebook icon

The Trek BBS title image

The Trek BBS statistics

Threads: 141,444
Posts: 5,507,676
Members: 25,134
Currently online: 409
Newest member: xunixan

TrekToday headlines

Retro Review: The Emperor’s New Cloak
By: Michelle on Dec 20

Star Trek Opera
By: T'Bonz on Dec 19

New Abrams Project
By: T'Bonz on Dec 18

IDW Publishing March 2015 Comics
By: T'Bonz on Dec 17

Paramount Star Trek 3 Expectations
By: T'Bonz on Dec 17

Star Trek #39 Sneak Peek
By: T'Bonz on Dec 16

Star Trek 3 Potential Director Shortlist
By: T'Bonz on Dec 16

Official Starships Collection Update
By: T'Bonz on Dec 15

Retro Review: Prodigal Daughter
By: Michelle on Dec 13

Sindicate Lager To Debut In The US Next Week
By: T'Bonz on Dec 12


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 > Misc. Star Trek > Future of Trek

Future of Trek Discussion of future Trek projects.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old October 16 2012, 11:12 PM   #46
Temis the Vorta
Fleet Admiral
 
Temis the Vorta's Avatar
 
Location: Tatoinne
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

I've suggested and advocated that before and more than a few have said that it "wouldn't be Star Trek"
Face it, you can suggest nearly anything around here and someone will say it's not Star Trek. "Immunity" for lead characters is a characteristic of TV, not any particular series, but it's breaking down on cable. It's just one of those broadcast traditions that wouldn't necessarily continue with Star Trek on cable or streaming, along with the episodic structure and PG-13 approach.

American Horror Story has an interesting approach: have each season be a different story, an anthology-by-season format. They also rehire a lot of the same actors to play different characters, which Star Trek also has a fine tradition of doing. One season, an actor is playing a human, next season they're a Vulcan or Cardassian, etc.

AHS seems to be using this strategy to hang onto hot actors like Zachary Quinto who have movie careers or are in demand for TV, and don't want to commit to several seasons of a TV series. But with a mere 13 episode season, it's likely they can fit a TV series in, if they have the option of skipping a season when it's not feasible.
Temis the Vorta is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 12:58 AM   #47
Kegg
Rear Admiral
 
Kegg's Avatar
 
Location: Ireland.
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

Temis the Friendly Ghost wrote: View Post
All the signs are there. CBS needs to do a kick-ass, intense, violent (but intelligent and character focused) Star Trek series and put it on Showtime.
First it goes without saying that there's currently no chance of a TV series even being considered until after the next movie comes out, as I think O&K have even said. I wouldn't be surprised if - even if STID (...that goddamn acronym) is a hit, they still don't do a series and just hold off for the final movie.

But however TV models are shifting, I think Star Trek is a bad fit for explicitly adult (or more realistically, teens plus) programming like what Showtime is currently known for.

There was once a Showtime that had Stargate and Lexx, but that's not the same channel that just grabed a hatful of emmys for its superlatively addictive thriller Homeland. I could see that channel picking up a genre show... but not a relatively family-friendly space opera.

It would astonish everyone how well it does and inspire a tsunami of imitators, most of which would flop or suck or both but at that point who cares.
We've seen a critically acclaimed and dark and mature cable space opera. It was called Battlestar Galactica, it was underwatched and it spawned very few imitators (Stargate: Universe... Bionic Woman maybe?) and two seperate abortive spinoff attempts.

So even if there's a proven market right now for zombies, horror, vampires and fantasy kingdoms - all recognizably genre traits - the case for space opera specifically is a little more tenuous, if by contrast to current trends a bit novel.


Temis the Friendly Ghost wrote: View Post
American Horror Story has an interesting approach: have each season be a different story, an anthology-by-season format.
It's an interesting approach (and sneaky at the Emmys, where they can throw themselves at awards in the much-less competitive miniseries field) and it's definitely something I'd like to see more often in television. It revives the anthology format in a way that incorporates modern TV serialization, there's a lot of potential in that idea.

...but Star Trek? I don't know. I think if you're telling a Star Trek story at some point, you need your Starfleet Captain and Starfleet crew characters. It might be interesting to see a series that changes location a lot, so that in one sense it feels episodic (planet of the week being planet of the year) but I don't see a need to remove the anchor of the Trek captain and crew. If variants of those characters are going to appear every year, why not just make them the same characters?

I mean I get, let's say, a season set on one planet that's mostly about that planet's various problems, with the Starfleet guys not always in the foreground, and thus rotating regulars each year that depends on the story (one year the title credits feature the Kai, some vedeks, a Bajoran prime minister and our Starfleet characters, next year whole new slate of principals except for the SF team) but keeping them around would make sense.
__________________
'Spock is always right, even when he's wrong. It's the tone of voice, the supernatural reasonability; this is not a man like us; this is a god.'
- Philip K. Dick
Kegg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 01:10 AM   #48
Lord Garth
Captain
 
Lord Garth's Avatar
 
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

We have nothing to work with at this point. It's virtually impossible to say if the next series will last longer than seven seasons. If the next series is successful, if, we'll probably get at least 88-100 episodes. With 13-episode cable-style seasons, that gets us seven or eight seasons. I don't know how likely it is but it's not outside the realm of possibility.

No matter how many seasons it runs, I don't think the next series will have as many episodes as TNG, DS9, or VOY.
Lord Garth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 01:12 AM   #49
Christopher
Writer
 
Christopher's Avatar
 
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

Kegg wrote: View Post
I think if you're telling a Star Trek story at some point, you need your Starfleet Captain and Starfleet crew characters. It might be interesting to see a series that changes location a lot, so that in one sense it feels episodic (planet of the week being planet of the year) but I don't see a need to remove the anchor of the Trek captain and crew. If variants of those characters are going to appear every year, why not just make them the same characters?
In Trek literature, we've seen a number of variations on the familiar "captain and crew" formula. SCE/Corps of Engineers focused on an engineering team as the main characters, with the captain and bridge crew of their ship as secondary characters. Vanguard's main characters included some familiar roles like a starbase commander, a science officer, and a doctor, but also a JAG officer, an ambassador, an intelligence officer, a reporter, a civilian trader, a Klingon spy, and an Orion merchant prince. Then there's my own Department of Temporal Investigations, which is along the lines of an FBI procedural whose main characters are DTI employees including field agents, administrators, a temporal physicist, and a counselor for the time-displaced. And of course there's Keith R.A. DeCandido's Articles of the Federation, a West Wing-style novel about the president of the UFP and her staff, characters who have continued to appear in multiple subsequent novels.

Over in the comics, there have been other well-received departures from the ship-and-crew formula, particularly John Byrne's comics for IDW, which include an Assignment: Earth miniseries (in the vein of what a Gary Seven TV show might've been had it actually been made in the '60s/'70s), a saga told from the perspective of the Romulans, and Leonard McCoy: Frontier Doctor, detailing Bones's adventures as a civilian between TOS and TMP.

So there's ample evidence that all Trek series don't have to follow the same formula of being centered on a ship and its command crew. It's been done numerous times in tie-in literature, so there's no reason it couldn't be done on TV.
__________________
Christopher L. Bennett Homepage -- Site update 11/16/14 including annotations for "The Caress of a Butterfly's Wing" and overview for DTI: The Collectors

Written Worlds -- My blog
Christopher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 01:41 AM   #50
Dream
Admiral
 
Dream's Avatar
 
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

Enterprise was pretty much on life support during the last two seasons. The writing might have improved later on but people had stopped caring by that point because the first two seasons were so medicore.

A new Trek series ABSOLUTELY can't ride on the cocktails of the Trek name and expect to get seven seasons anymore.

TNG was the only one that I excuse for starting out weakly. DS9, VOY and ENT should have been great from the start. The slow start hurt every spinoff after TNG.
Dream is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 01:55 AM   #51
Kegg
Rear Admiral
 
Kegg's Avatar
 
Location: Ireland.
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

Christopher wrote: View Post
So there's ample evidence that all Trek series don't have to follow the same formula of being centered on a ship and its command crew. It's been done numerous times in tie-in literature, so there's no reason it couldn't be done on TV.
Just because something can work in tie-lin literature doesn't mean it can work for TV, though. They're fundamentally different animals with different goals and markets in mind.

Tie-in literature presumes you already care about the setting, and about specific characters. It's perfectly reasonable to expect that you might be interested in an entire novel about the Cardassian Elim Garak, or from the perspective of a Klingon starship.

That's a harder sell with a Star Trek TV series, as any Trek TV series will want to bring in an audience unfamiliar to the franchise, even as it utilizes familiar elements.

So yeah, you're going to want human anchors for whatever the setting of the series is, and more often than not you'll want them to be Starfleet.
__________________
'Spock is always right, even when he's wrong. It's the tone of voice, the supernatural reasonability; this is not a man like us; this is a god.'
- Philip K. Dick
Kegg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 02:58 AM   #52
Christopher
Writer
 
Christopher's Avatar
 
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

Dream wrote: View Post
A new Trek series ABSOLUTELY can't ride on the cocktails of the Trek name and expect to get seven seasons anymore.
That's "coattails." As in being dragged along on the long tails of someone's coat, letting them do all the work rather than doing any yourself. Trying to ride in someone's cocktails would get pretty messy and achieve little.


Kegg wrote: View Post
Tie-in literature presumes you already care about the setting, and about specific characters. It's perfectly reasonable to expect that you might be interested in an entire novel about the Cardassian Elim Garak, or from the perspective of a Klingon starship.

That's a harder sell with a Star Trek TV series, as any Trek TV series will want to bring in an audience unfamiliar to the franchise, even as it utilizes familiar elements.

So yeah, you're going to want human anchors for whatever the setting of the series is, and more often than not you'll want them to be Starfleet.
Aren't you being a little selective in your examples? The anchors for Articles, DTI, SCE, and Vanguard are all largely human characters; also, the latter two are Starfleet-focused and the former two have Starfleet in significant supporting roles. But the point is that it's a failure of imagination to assume the only possibility is to use the exact same stock pattern of starship captain, science officer, doctor, engineer, helmsman, etc. every single time. DS9 certainly diverged from that formula; it was set mainly on a space station, and though it had many of the standard Starfleet character types, it also heavily featured civilian characters such as the station constable and resident bartender, not to mention all the other diverse supporting characters who became almost as prominent as the regulars.
__________________
Christopher L. Bennett Homepage -- Site update 11/16/14 including annotations for "The Caress of a Butterfly's Wing" and overview for DTI: The Collectors

Written Worlds -- My blog
Christopher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 03:09 AM   #53
Kegg
Rear Admiral
 
Kegg's Avatar
 
Location: Ireland.
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

Christopher wrote: View Post
Aren't you being a little selective in your examples?
Not really, since my point was that the TV series needs human and Starfleet characters, not that it needs to be on a starship.
__________________
'Spock is always right, even when he's wrong. It's the tone of voice, the supernatural reasonability; this is not a man like us; this is a god.'
- Philip K. Dick
Kegg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 03:56 AM   #54
Tiberius
Commodore
 
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

FWIW, I think "It's Only a Paper Moon" showed us that having episodes where actors who were previously only guest stars carrying the entire show would work very well. And in the Final Chapter of DS9 we see guest stars taking large portions of the screen time - Weyoun and Damar, for example.
Tiberius is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 04:17 AM   #55
Christopher
Writer
 
Christopher's Avatar
 
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

Ti-BOO!-rius wrote: View Post
FWIW, I think "It's Only a Paper Moon" showed us that having episodes where actors who were previously only guest stars carrying the entire show would work very well.
I think "Half a Life" proved that years earlier. And a lot of DS9 episodes were built largely around supporting characters -- Garak, Rom, Nog, Leeta, Bareil, Winn, Dukat, etc. Heck, they even did an episode revolving around Morn, though he was technically hardly in it. DS9 ended up with a huge ensemble cast in which the Starfleet characters often played a secondary role.

Personally I'd like to see more of the Federation beyond Starfleet. Too often they're treated as equivalent. Sure, ST should be largely about space exploration, but aren't there any civilian explorers?
__________________
Christopher L. Bennett Homepage -- Site update 11/16/14 including annotations for "The Caress of a Butterfly's Wing" and overview for DTI: The Collectors

Written Worlds -- My blog
Christopher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 04:56 AM   #56
Tiberius
Commodore
 
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

Christopher wrote: View Post
Ti-BOO!-rius wrote: View Post
FWIW, I think "It's Only a Paper Moon" showed us that having episodes where actors who were previously only guest stars carrying the entire show would work very well.
I think "Half a Life" proved that years earlier.
I didn't think of that, but you are right.

And a lot of DS9 episodes were built largely around supporting characters -- Garak, Rom, Nog, Leeta, Bareil, Winn, Dukat, etc. Heck, they even did an episode revolving around Morn, though he was technically hardly in it. DS9 ended up with a huge ensemble cast in which the Starfleet characters often played a secondary role.
Kinda makes me wonder what Voyager would have been like if Chakotay had kept his ship and we'd had two separate crews.

Personally I'd like to see more of the Federation beyond Starfleet. Too often they're treated as equivalent. Sure, ST should be largely about space exploration, but aren't there any civilian explorers?
Yeah. We could have a small story arc where a group of civilian scientists come aboard and for four episodes we could see them interacting with the crew, have stories that stretch over those arcs...
Tiberius is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 02:29 PM   #57
Christopher
Writer
 
Christopher's Avatar
 
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

^I was suggesting something more along the lines of a whole series focusing on civilian explorers. Starfleet's been done, over and over and over again. Let's see what else the Federation has to offer. Too many people out there have the impression that the Federation is a military state because we've almost never seen any aspect of it beyond Starfleet. It's as if your only knowledge of the United States came from M*A*S*H and Baa Baa Black Sheep and JAG.

And it would bring a fresh twist to the space-exploration angle of ST if we could see it from a more civilian perspective, without the same strict regulations, without the same power the crew could draw on to defend themselves, etc. We got a glimpse of this in Enterprise, since Earth Starfleet wasn't a combat organization, but it didn't really take it far enough, since too many of its forms and protocols were much the same as the Starfleet we know.
__________________
Christopher L. Bennett Homepage -- Site update 11/16/14 including annotations for "The Caress of a Butterfly's Wing" and overview for DTI: The Collectors

Written Worlds -- My blog
Christopher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 05:55 PM   #58
Temis the Vorta
Fleet Admiral
 
Temis the Vorta's Avatar
 
Location: Tatoinne
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

But however TV models are shifting, I think Star Trek is a bad fit for explicitly adult (or more realistically, teens plus) programming like what Showtime is currently known for.
If you define Star Trek as being a show that was created for the broadcast milieu, sure. But the broadcast-friendly elements - PG-13, episodic, set cast of main characters who never die, etc - are not the "core" of the franchise, and exist only because that's what you need if you're on broadcast.

Star Trek is simply the ongoing story of Starfleet, which defends the utopian Federation from the un-Utopian galaxy. You can still tell that story and ditch all the broadcast elements. The story's core is very different from the demands of any given medium.

So there's ample evidence that all Trek series don't have to follow the same formula of being centered on a ship and its command crew. It's been done numerous times in tie-in literature, so there's no reason it couldn't be done on TV.
TrekLit is a great example of the franchise being shaped to a new medium. Novels are far more flexible in what the audience will accept, so there's more variation.

Abrams' movies are another example - to be a global action movie hit, you have to shoehorn the story into a format that amps up the action and visuals, and of course fits into two hours. Abrams couldn't have made a 19-hour movie, even if he thought that would have been the best story.

Just because something can work in tie-lin literature doesn't mean it can work for TV, though. They're fundamentally different animals with different goals and markets in mind.
Right, TrekLit is different from broadcast TV and cable, but broadcast TV and cable are different from each other, too. And movies are different from all of them. Each form imposes its demands on the story, and each allows various types and degrees of freedom. You won't get the same Star Trek from different mediums.

Personally I'd like to see more of the Federation beyond Starfleet. Too often they're treated as equivalent. Sure, ST should be largely about space exploration, but aren't there any civilian explorers?
At this point, the issue becomes, what is Star Trek, and how is it unique from any other space exploration story. Starfleet is what gives it that distinct character. A story about civilian explorers could be B5 or Firefly. But civilian characters in addition to, or working for, Starfleet could work.

Last edited by Temis the Vorta; October 17 2012 at 06:16 PM.
Temis the Vorta is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 07:36 PM   #59
Kegg
Rear Admiral
 
Kegg's Avatar
 
Location: Ireland.
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

^
Indeed. And one of the points of Starfleet is how broad its job description is a bit broader than real world militaries and most sci-fi equivalents. Nella Daren is a Starfleet officer and a stellar scientist. There's also historians, psychologists, and so on - and examples of civilians who work on starships along Starfleet personnel, like Keiko O'Brien as a botanist.

What might be worth noting is that half the examples I've given were never done by principal characters, though. A series could have a greater focus on the different sciences and include civilian scientists... but you're still gonna want people with phasers, and so on.

And of course worth recalling: We've seen Star Trek do the same ideas many times, but a new series is about bringing in a new audience. A fresh take on the familiar - like Abrams' - is more likely than a series whose connection to Star Trek is largely because it's part of a shared universe.
__________________
'Spock is always right, even when he's wrong. It's the tone of voice, the supernatural reasonability; this is not a man like us; this is a god.'
- Philip K. Dick
Kegg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 17 2012, 08:07 PM   #60
Christopher
Writer
 
Christopher's Avatar
 
Re: Think We'll Ever See A Trek Series Longer Than 7 seasons?

^All that is true, but let's remember what this part of the discussion was originally about. I think we've all drifted away from that, myself included. Temis brought up the model of American Horror Story, an approach where each season would basically start over with a different situation and cast of characters. You questioned that on the assumption that there would have to be a Starfleet captain and crew featured in every season and that if you were going to use the same character types every year, you might as well use the same characters. I was pointing out that you don't have to use the exact same crew composition every single year, that you're being very unimaginative in your assumptions about what a Star Trek story can be. If the format of the show were to do something different every season, then yes, it absolutely would be possible to create more variety than you're assuming, and we have plenty of examples -- including a canonical one, DS9 -- that prove you can have the basic, familiar elements but still inject a lot of variety. It absolutely would not have to be just the same job descriptions filled by different characters.
__________________
Christopher L. Bennett Homepage -- Site update 11/16/14 including annotations for "The Caress of a Butterfly's Wing" and overview for DTI: The Collectors

Written Worlds -- My blog
Christopher is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

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 09:25 AM.

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