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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 January 3 2013, 01:31 AM   #391
Admiral Buzzkill
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

Star Trek was good when they were writing a better world than ours. When someone decided that it should be "utopian," it sucked - period, full stop.
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Old January 3 2013, 01:38 AM   #392
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

Greg Cox wrote: View Post
Honestly, I don't remember TOS explaining the physics behind how the Guardian of Forever worked, or the Atavachron, or Janice Lester's mind-transfer device, or whatever the Kelvans used to turn the crew into paperweights. Star Trek has never really been about rigorous hard science fiction, especially if it gets in the way of an exciting space opera adventure/morality play/drama/comedy/horror story . . . .
I would agree except that in all of your examples we are lead to believe that however magical such things appear to us, they are either based on the technology or natural abilities of the characters in question. In ST09 we are expected to believe either in a string of extremely unlikely events or that the very universe is selectively helping he writers out. Well, there was that suggestion about Q for which we see no support in the movie.

And, unless I missed something, the new movie still takes place in a future that basically works, where people from diverse backgrounds and worlds come together for the common good. Where people aspire to explore the cosmos as part of a United Federation of Planets. Sounds like STAR TREK to me . . . .
I have never said ST09 isn't superficially similar to Star Trek. It's when we get down to what actually happens in the movie the problems start.

As for turning "utopian" into a straw man, you may use the word in a less literal sense (which I applaud), ...
I try not to use it at all, but thankyou.

... but I've seen endless debates on this very board about whether such and such episode or movie or book is "utopian" enough, or people stating confidently that there should be no disease or conflict or personal failings or political corruption or casual sex or child abuse or whatever in the perfect utopian world of STAR TREK, which bears little resemblance to the universe depicted in TOS.
Well, no doubt like yourself, I'm not too concerned with the views of people who have clearly never seen TOS.

So, yeah, I do think it's possible to get carried away with the "utopian" thing, at the expense of telling stories like "Conscience of the King" or "Is There in Truth No Beauty?" or "The Enemy Within" or "Court-Martial" or "The Ultimate Computer" that explore both the dark and light sides of the 23rd Century . . .
Without reviewing those eps, I can't recall the pertinent details (and the devil is usually in the details as many manage to forget when claiming that if, for example, if you've seen one bar fight, you've seen them all). But I would say that I am not talking about shades of grey or difficault situations. I'm happy if someone recognises there is a problem and does what they can to ameliorate it. Nor of course should Starfleet seem to be the one sweeping things under the carpet when there isn't even a good reason to do so.


Franklin wrote: View Post
It presented a better world, but never a utopia.
Correct.

And, while Earth may even seem like a paradise full of comfort and no worries for its 23rd century inhabitants, I have a feeling Cumberbatch is about blow that myth to bits and show how naive and complacent that attitude really is. (If the destruction of Vulcan and probably being just minutes from Earth's own destruction didn't destroy that myth, already.)
I'm assuming that that part of your post was not intended to have a bearing on what I am talking about?
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Old January 3 2013, 01:42 AM   #393
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

Franklin wrote: View Post
TOS was labeled "optimistic" only because it did show a future where somehow humankind got through it all (kids, let me tell you about the 1960s), solved a few major problems, and seemed to be able to get along well enough to cooperate for a greater good.

It presented a better world, but never a utopia.
Exactly. And the people who lived there were still flesh-and-blood human beings with all the strengths and frailities and irrational emotions that entails. Not enlightened role models who have evolved beyond primitive human imperfections.

Don't get me wrong. The fact that TREK takes place in a future that largely works, as opposed to some post-apocalyptic wasteland or soul-crushing dystopia, is one of the main things that distinguishes it from a lot of media SF: Planet of the Apes, The Invaders, Logan's Run, Terminator, Road Warrior, etc. That's a big part of its appeal.

But, remember, we never actually saw any sort of "utopian" Earth back on TOS. What we actually saw--what the show was really about--was wild and woolly and occasionally thought-provoking adventures out on the rugged final frontier, light-years away from whatever advanced society produced Kirk and McCoy and Sulu and the rest . . . . Earth's progress was mostly just implied, and was never the whole point of the show.

(I admit to being biased here. As an editor, I have seen even good writers go astray when they start putting their "message" ahead of the story. Don't get me started on that romance novel I edited years ago in which the boy and girl kept lecturing each other on the importance of saving the environment--even during the love scenes! Clearly, it traumatized me for life--and made me very leery of folks who think that a "message" or "vision" takes precedence over telling a good story with memorable characters.)
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Old January 3 2013, 01:48 AM   #394
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

My Name Is Legion wrote: View Post
Star Trek was good when they were writing a better world than ours.


When someone decided that it should be "utopian," it sucked - period, full stop.
You don't like TNG? I do but, fair enough.
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Old January 3 2013, 01:48 AM   #395
Admiral Buzzkill
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

UFO wrote: View Post

And, while Earth may even seem like a paradise full of comfort and no worries for its 23rd century inhabitants, I have a feeling Cumberbatch is about blow that myth to bits and show how naive and complacent that attitude really is. (If the destruction of Vulcan and probably being just minutes from Earth's own destruction didn't destroy that myth, already.)
I'm assuming that that part of your post was not intended to have a bearing on what I am talking about?
Well, you know, sometimes people just post what they think.

Peculiar, that.
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Old January 3 2013, 01:50 AM   #396
Greg Cox
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

My Name Is Legion wrote: View Post
UFO wrote: View Post

And, while Earth may even seem like a paradise full of comfort and no worries for its 23rd century inhabitants, I have a feeling Cumberbatch is about blow that myth to bits and show how naive and complacent that attitude really is. (If the destruction of Vulcan and probably being just minutes from Earth's own destruction didn't destroy that myth, already.)
I'm assuming that that part of your post was not intended to have a bearing on what I am talking about?
Well, you know, sometimes people just post what they think.

Peculiar, that.
Just to avoid confusion, that quote was Franklin speaking, not me.
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Old January 3 2013, 03:11 AM   #397
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

I liked TNG quite a bit, but their notions of the utopian society that was Earth in the 24th century felt a bit creepy to me. I can't quite put my finger on why exactly it felt sometimes seemed creepy to me, but it's like I almost expected that society to be something akin to The Village from The Prisoner.

I guess it may be because we never really did see the day-to-day life of TNG's utopian society that it almost felt fake to me, like it was a fašade.

Anyway...Be seeing you.
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Old January 3 2013, 03:12 AM   #398
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

Always struck me as funny that TOS was supposed to be utopian in values and show the best of humanity when McCoy is such a racist arsehole to Spock all the time.

And everybody's just cool with it . Imagine if he walked on to the bridge and talked that way to Uhura or Sulu about their race.

I prefer TNG's approach in that humanity have progressed further in ridding themself of prejudice and conflict. It makes for stranger viewing and better escapism.
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Old January 3 2013, 03:26 AM   #399
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

DalekJim wrote: View Post
Always struck me as funny that TOS was supposed to be utopian in values and show the best of humanity when McCoy is such a racist arsehole to Spock all the time.

And everybody's just cool with it . Imagine if he walked on to the bridge and talked that way to Uhura or Sulu about their race.

I prefer TNG's approach in that humanity have progressed further in ridding themself of prejudice and conflict. It makes for stranger viewing and better escapism.
I'm not sure if TOS ever touted their world as a utopian society (at least not during the TV run). They said they had overcame a lot of social ills that plagued the Earth in the past, but they never said they had no problems "period".

We people in the 21st century would also say we are much more civilized than, say, 300 years ago, and have overcome many social injustices over the past few centuries. However, we would never claim that our society is totally enlightened.
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Old January 3 2013, 03:32 AM   #400
Nerys Myk
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

DalekJim wrote: View Post
Always struck me as funny that TOS was supposed to be utopian in values and show the best of humanity when McCoy is such a racist arsehole to Spock all the time.

And everybody's just cool with it . Imagine if he walked on to the bridge and talked that way to Uhura or Sulu about their race.

I prefer TNG's approach in that humanity have progressed further in ridding themself of prejudice and conflict. It makes for stranger viewing and better escapism.
Spock gave as good as he got. He always got a few "glad I'm not human" cracks in there.
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Old January 3 2013, 03:47 AM   #401
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

And yet TNG wasn't so free of prejudice as it claimed to be, thanks to Roddenberry's blatant anti-theism.
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Old January 3 2013, 03:55 AM   #402
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

DalekJim wrote: View Post
I prefer TNG's approach in that humanity have progressed further in ridding themself of prejudice and conflict. It makes for stranger viewing and better escapism.
But it made for less memorable characters and situations.
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Old January 3 2013, 03:56 AM   #403
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

Jackson_Roykirk wrote: View Post
DalekJim wrote: View Post
Always struck me as funny that TOS was supposed to be utopian in values and show the best of humanity when McCoy is such a racist arsehole to Spock all the time.

And everybody's just cool with it . Imagine if he walked on to the bridge and talked that way to Uhura or Sulu about their race.

I prefer TNG's approach in that humanity have progressed further in ridding themself of prejudice and conflict. It makes for stranger viewing and better escapism.
I'm not sure if TOS ever touted their world as a utopian society (at least not during the TV run). They said they had overcame a lot of social ills that plagued the Earth in the past, but they never said they had no problems "period".

We people in the 21st century would also say we are much more civilized than, say, 300 years ago, and have overcome many social injustices over the past few centuries. However, we would never claim that our society is totally enlightened.
Civilization is a veneer. Always has been. Always will be.

McCoy was there to keep everyone honest. Even if his ways weren't PC by even 21st century standards. Frankly, you need a person like that around, now and then.

(And, I reach, Herbert Roykirk, with your other post about the utopian ideals in TNG being a little bit creepy. Pompous, too. To me, it comes down to this: would you rather be at a party with Kirk on a New Years Eve in the 23rd century, or with Picard in the 24th? To me, the answer is obvious.)
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Old January 3 2013, 03:59 AM   #404
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

Franklin wrote: View Post
To me, it comes down to this: would you rather be at a party with Kirk on a New Years Eve in the 23rd century, or with Picard in the 24th? To me, the answer is obvious.
Well, one would provide fascinating intellectual and philosophical debate and the other would be fucking my girlfriend in the broom cupboard.
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Old January 3 2013, 04:02 AM   #405
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Re: Do you think Star Trek needed a reboot?

DalekJim wrote: View Post
Franklin wrote: View Post
To me, it comes down to this: would you rather be at a party with Kirk on a New Years Eve in the 23rd century, or with Picard in the 24th? To me, the answer is obvious.
Well, one would provide fascinating intellectual and philosophical debate and the other would be fucking my girlfriend in the broom cupboard.
With Kirk you'd likely get both...
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