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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 April 16 2013, 07:07 PM   #1
lordbaltimore1
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Subplots and Mini-Arcs

Something that's sort of unique to Star Trek TNG is the presence of mini-arcs that will have one or two usually non-consecutive episodes per season. In a way TNG is a show comprised predominantly of mini-arcs, as opposed to being a serial with one overarching arc.

Examples include

The Q Episodes

The Borg Episodes

Worf/Klingon arc with his dad, brother, and son

Lt. Barclay episodes

Cardassian/Bajoran episodes

Romulan episodes

Data/Lore episodes

It's kind of cool to watch all of them back to back with Netflix, you can make little miniseries for yourself. They are all interlinked too, you need to watch them in order.
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Old April 16 2013, 07:22 PM   #2
Marsden
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

My favorite was the Cmdr. Remmick arc.
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Old April 16 2013, 07:35 PM   #3
R. Star
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

TNG had some great subplots to be sure. But I still would've preferred to have an over all direction to the series beyond we're flying around space seeing what we find. That wouldn't have undermined the subplots at all.

Marsden wrote: View Post
My favorite was the Cmdr. Remmick arc.
Too bad that never went anywhere until the DS9 authors remembered that twenty years later.
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Old April 16 2013, 09:18 PM   #4
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

I'm fairly fond of the DaiMon Bok arc, myself. Only 2 episodes and yet he stands out in the top 2 or 3 antagonist characters, imo
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Old April 16 2013, 10:54 PM   #5
RandyS
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

R. Star wrote: View Post
TNG had some great subplots to be sure. But I still would've preferred to have an over all direction to the series beyond we're flying around space seeing what we find. That wouldn't have undermined the subplots at all.

Marsden wrote: View Post
My favorite was the Cmdr. Remmick arc.
Too bad that never went anywhere until the DS9 authors remembered that twenty years later.
Huh? By twenty years later (2008), both TNG and DS9 had been over for a decade.
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Old April 16 2013, 11:15 PM   #6
R. Star
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

Novel authors, I should have specified.
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Old April 17 2013, 12:02 AM   #7
EnsignRedshirt
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

Q and the Borg really did it for me when I was kid growing up on Trek. Whenever that flash of light or that menacing cube appeared on screen, I knew I was in for a good time.
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Old April 17 2013, 04:48 AM   #8
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

I disagree, with the exception of TOS, TNG was the least arc-oriented Trek series ever, compared to the very arc heavy DS9 and ENT series. I find it refreshing to revisit TNG by jumping around for that reason... perhaps more so in the books?

Is ensign Sonya Gomez a mini arc because she is in two consecutive episodes?

VOY is a grey area, since the 'lost in space' concept is a series wide arc in itself.
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Old April 17 2013, 11:21 AM   #9
USS Firefly
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

Is ensign Sonya Gomez a mini arc because she is in two consecutive episodes?
I don't think so because Robin Lefter should be also a mini arc.
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Old April 17 2013, 06:32 PM   #10
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

The "Geordi can't get laid" arc, a classic.


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Old April 17 2013, 06:33 PM   #11
R. Star
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

T'Girl wrote: View Post
The "Geordi can't get laid" arc, a classic.


Even Wesley calling him out, "At least I don't get my women on the holodeck." That has to be one of the best Trek zings... moreso coming from Ensign Wetpants.
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Old April 17 2013, 07:25 PM   #12
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

I like the Riker/Troi arc - well, it was more of a meander, but I still like it. What can I tell ya, I'm a romantic/fangirl. You decide!
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Old April 17 2013, 08:34 PM   #13
R. Star
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

What arc was there? Riker slept around with every alien chick of the week as long as he could while Troi waited. I think she had like... only three or four romances... in all of TNG. I honestly only think Riker settled for Troi when he was visibly getting older and couldn't get away with it anymore.
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Old April 18 2013, 01:23 PM   #14
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

lordbaltimore1 wrote: View Post
Something that's sort of unique to Star Trek TNG is the presence of mini-arcs that will have one or two usually non-consecutive episodes per season. In a way TNG is a show comprised predominantly of mini-arcs, as opposed to being a serial with one overarching arc.
I think you're misusing the term "story arc".

And to say TNG was a show "comprised predominantly of mini-arcs"??? Surely TNG was a show comprised predominantly of standalone episodes - and was the better for it.

I'll give you the Klingon saga, but "the Barclay episodes". Besides the fact that the character recurred a few times, there's no "story arc" in the generally-accepted definition of the term. There's barely even a "character arc".

I get what you mean, just don't think they constitute story arcs. Perhaps it's better to say that every now and again, TNG would revisit an earlier plot point/character and you liked it (I did too, incidentally!)
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Old April 18 2013, 08:01 PM   #15
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Re: Subplots and Mini-Arcs

I have to agree that the general theme of TNG was standalone episodes, rather than being focused on having mini-arcs.

TNG did have an element of 'resetting' after every episode, not necessarily completely though and better for it, since we did see some character development and what not.
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