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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek TV Series > The Next Generation

The Next Generation All Good Things come to an end...but not here.

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Old January 5 2013, 12:21 PM   #1
at Quark's
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why is s6 > s7 ?

Hi all,

Perhaps a stupid question, but can anyone explain to me why TNG 's 6th seaon is regarded by many as the best of TNG overall, and the 7th season as inferior, having 'run out of steam', or whatever ?

When I look through the ep list, I see about the same proportion of great eps, average/not really interesting eps and silly/bad eps ...

(Perhaps it helps to tell that I don't consider e.g. 'genesis' a bad ep, just because the science is ridiculous; there's still nice entertainment value there, which is my ultimate reason for watching trek. Same holds for 'masks', of course the story is ridiculous and bizarre, but at least it's an original approach for the TNG format, which I find entertaining in itself, etc.).
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Old January 5 2013, 12:34 PM   #2
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

It's all personal preference. I personally dislike Genesis. And hate Masks. And Eye of the Beholder and Emergence and Sub Rosa and Homeward and Forces of Nature. Ugh.

But there are good ones too, naturally.
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Old January 5 2013, 12:51 PM   #3
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

Personel taste, I think the best run of episode was in the mid part of the show seasons three through five. Not saying season six and seven are bad, just that they had more average episodes.
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Old January 5 2013, 12:52 PM   #4
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

My pure conjecture is that they lost their focus and began winding down seeing the end come. The last season seemed a little assembly line, a little dull, and a little distracted to me. I think a lot of series tend to get dull in later seasons too comfortable with themselves and having lost some of the fire and new ideas of earlier seasons. S7 had some pretty unique episodes but they sort of just fell flat with me. And some of TPTB I remember saying were distracted putting together GEN.
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Old January 5 2013, 12:55 PM   #5
Tosk
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

Season 7:

Writer #1 "Hey, what if we got to meet X's relative in this episode?"
Writer #2 "I love it!"
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Old January 5 2013, 05:21 PM   #6
R. Star
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

Honestly season 7 just seemed to be obvious they were running out of ideas, so they just started throwing random things out there that really didn't make sense.

Hey, let's have Worf and Troi hook up! Hey let's make Troi a command officer! Let's have Wesley become a Indian seer! Let's give Data a Mom.. wait it's Robomom!

So yeah... then throw in the just bad episodes like Dark Page, Phantasms, Force of Nature, Sub Rosa, Emergence and the such and yeah.... not season 1 levels of bad, but it wasn't as good as six.
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Old January 5 2013, 05:57 PM   #7
BillJ
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

I thought seasons six and seven were both really poor.
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Old January 5 2013, 06:03 PM   #8
MacLeod
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

But as with anything you are judged by what came before. So yes many S6-7 episodes are better than S1-2 episodes but not as good as S3-5 episodes.

The same applies to shows as well, the later shows DSN, VOY and ENT are compared against TNG.
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Old January 5 2013, 06:33 PM   #9
davejames
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

Tosk wrote: View Post
Season 7:

Writer #1 "Hey, what if we got to meet X's relative in this episode?"
Writer #2 "I love it!"
Yeah, in the TNG365 book, Moore acknowledges that the writers were all running on fumes by the 7th season, and had to resort to bringing in long-lost relatives of the crew-- which is always a sign that a show is running out of ideas.

S6 in comparison felt a LOT more fun and creative. You had a western, a Picard flashback episode, Troi pretending to be Romulan, Riker in a mental institution, the return of Moriarty, the return of Scotty, etc.
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Old January 5 2013, 06:45 PM   #10
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

Beverly alien-ghost orgasm is enough to drag down the entire seventh season by itself.
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Old January 5 2013, 06:59 PM   #11
at Quark's
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

R. Star wrote: View Post
Honestly season 7 just seemed to be obvious they were running out of ideas, so they just started throwing random things out there that really didn't make sense.

Hey, let's have Worf and Troi hook up!
I agree, that one was silly and implausible imho. (Although they did do some build up.)

R. Star wrote: View Post
Hey let's make Troi a command officer!
Not extremely implausible, imho. I could see how she'd want to 'stretch herself a little'. Of course, whether she could become a command officer that easily is another matter.

R. Star wrote: View Post
Let's have Wesley become a Indian seer!
Not quite that, he went to study with the Traveler. And special insights in the relations between space, time and thoughts were already accredited to him in early s1, by that same traveler. As for ascending into semi-godhood, well, he wasn't the first in Trek...

R. Star wrote: View Post
Let's give Data a Mom.. wait it's Robomom!
Well, perhaps she shouldn't have been his mom, but the concept of an android that never new it was an android, but thought of itself as human, was OK by me (even if somewhat silly).

R. Star wrote: View Post
So yeah... then throw in the just bad episodes like Dark Page, Phantasms, Force of Nature, Sub Rosa, Emergence and the such and yeah.... not season 1 levels of bad, but it wasn't as good as six.
On those I agree, with the exception of Phantasms, which I find a nice creepy episode about nightmares.

But... are these examples really more 'random' than turning the command officers into children, Riker meeting his duplicate because of a transporter accident, Beverly suddenly turning into a detective, or suddenly giving Picard a covert espionage mission and let another captain take command of the enterprise -- just to mention a few things that happened in S6). Not trying to be argumentative, just trying to understand the difference.


davejames wrote: View Post

Yeah, in the TNG365 book, Moore acknowledges that the writers were all running on fumes by the 7th season, and had to resort to bringing in long-lost relatives of the crew-- which is always a sign that a show is running out of ideas.
Ah, so I gather that in essence, the writers have admitted so themselves, and the perception of that has since spread to the general audience. I also agree that we see a lot of family members in S7 ...
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Old January 6 2013, 12:58 AM   #12
Tosk
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

Data's "mother", Geordi's mother and father, Beverly's grandmother, Jean Luc's "son", Worf's brother, and Deanna's sister. It doesn't sound like a long list, but it does skew season 7 towards that feeling of creative desperation.

That's not to say S7 sucked. It also had really great episodes. To varying levels, I really like Descent, Gambit, Attached, Parallels, The Pegasus, Lower Decks, Thine Own Self, Firstborn, Preemptive Strike, and All Good Things.
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Old January 6 2013, 02:52 AM   #13
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

I like Season 7 a bit more than most I think, but Season 6 is my favourite TNG season. Just a lot of really good episodes (including the great Chain of Command double and a couple of my all-time favourites in Frame of Mind and Tapestry) and only a couple average ones. Seasons 3 and 4 come very close though.
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Old January 6 2013, 03:36 AM   #14
Bad Atom
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

A lot of the writing talent also went over to DS9 during TNG's sixth season, which stretched TNG's writers pretty thin.
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Old January 6 2013, 05:35 AM   #15
Lance
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Re: why is s6 > s7 ?

Chalk it up as "your milage may vary". Speaking personally, I do agree with what Tosk says above, and feel that there was definitely a broad dip in quality in the last two seasons, as if in some ways the team was becoming creatively bankrupt in terms of what they could bring to TNG. And as Bad Atom says, it is also not unrelated to DS9 just starting up. It's perfectly natural that a greater amount of the available resources were going towards the new boy rather than the established favorite.

To be fair, Berman and Pillar predicted the situation. One of the very first memos they wrote to the TNG team going into the sixth season was an attempt to dispell the feeling that DS9 was going to somehow supplant TNG, and they emphasised that they wanted both writing teams to work together in sharing ideas. But in practice it was hard for them to avoid a little "brain drain".
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