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Future of Trek Discussion of future Trek projects.

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Old August 25 2013, 06:23 AM   #16
The Overlord
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

C.E. Evans wrote: View Post
The Overlord wrote: View Post
Carcazoid wrote: View Post
I'm looking at this from my own perspective, the only one I have.

Watching tv is not a priority in our lives. My wife and I work a lot of hours, and keeping up with a series is hard to do. Most of the shows we like are in reruns, because we missed them in first run.

I've spent more time online today than I have in the last month, and that's because I'm at a standstill in other things.

It's hard to follow a serialized show with all the other things going on. My preference is to watch a bottle show with characters I like, so I don't have to try to keep up with a season long arc.

Some series can do it that way, and others can't.

Take Monk, for example. If you know the premise, you can watch any episode in any order, and it's ok. You don't have to know that last week Adrian had a cold and only got out of bed to save Natalie from a killer to know that in the next episode he would rescue his brother from a poisoned Halloween candy bar.

I prefer to watch episodes of my favorite shows that don't need a setup. I can fill in the blanks myself, and if I was wrong it just makes it that much more fun.
A show cannot revolve around the needs of one or two fans, it has to reach a wide audience and I think today's audience likes shows with ongoing stories.
Actually today's audience likes either shows with ongoing stories or shows with single-episode stories. It's definitely not a case of the former being more popular than the latter since the latter is actually more prevalent on U.S. television. Don't get me wrong, there are indeed very successful shows with ongoing story/soap opera formats, but they are not the only kind of shows that are successful, and they do appeal a wide audience today.
Perhaps, but I would say those are the type of shows getting the most attention and critical praise.

I would say people care more about Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones rather then Law and Order and NCIS. An ongoing story with various twists and turns creates more buzz then an episodic show does.
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Old August 25 2013, 07:50 AM   #17
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

I grew up on '50s and '60s TV. Occasionally I'd get to go to a movie. With literature, I preferred short stories to novels. Most of my reading these days is non-fiction or reference books. I generally avoided books that were trilogies or multi-volumes interconnected with each other.

With visual entertainment, if I want a novel, I watch a movie. If I want a short story, I watch a television episode. Multi-episode arcs were very confusing for me when I couldn't catch all the episodes in an arc. Now of course, I have plenty of time to watch stuff like that, but I can't afford to spend the money to be able to do it.
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Old August 25 2013, 10:05 AM   #18
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

Today's TV landscape is extremely dull in my opinion. All these depressive, miserable, failed characters running around, intertwined in overly complicated plots that are contrived to no end. So I don't think I would enjoy a show like that.
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Old August 25 2013, 05:26 PM   #19
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

JarodRussell wrote: View Post
Today's TV landscape is extremely dull in my opinion. All these depressive, miserable, failed characters running around, intertwined in overly complicated plots that are contrived to no end. So I don't think I would enjoy a show like that.
Me either. The very concept of Star Trek is not compatable with today's TV.
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Old August 25 2013, 05:42 PM   #20
Hartzilla2007
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

RandyS wrote: View Post
JarodRussell wrote: View Post
Today's TV landscape is extremely dull in my opinion. All these depressive, miserable, failed characters running around, intertwined in overly complicated plots that are contrived to no end. So I don't think I would enjoy a show like that.
Me either. The very concept of Star Trek is not compatable with today's TV.
I ask again...

What examples of this do you have exactly?

JarodRussell wrote: View Post
Today's TV landscape is extremely dull in my opinion. All these depressive, miserable, failed characters running around, intertwined in overly complicated plots that are contrived to no end. So I don't think I would enjoy a show like that.
So your problem with modern is that people aren't Stepford Smilers who shrug trauma off like its nothing and that the show makes you use your brain to keep up?
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Old August 25 2013, 08:17 PM   #21
C.E. Evans
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

The Overlord wrote: View Post
C.E. Evans wrote: View Post
The Overlord wrote: View Post

A show cannot revolve around the needs of one or two fans, it has to reach a wide audience and I think today's audience likes shows with ongoing stories.
Actually today's audience likes either shows with ongoing stories or shows with single-episode stories. It's definitely not a case of the former being more popular than the latter since the latter is actually more prevalent on U.S. television. Don't get me wrong, there are indeed very successful shows with ongoing story/soap opera formats, but they are not the only kind of shows that are successful, and they do appeal a wide audience today.
Perhaps, but I would say those are the type of shows getting the most attention and critical praise.
Which of course, doesn't really matter as far as ratings go. While critical praise and spotlighting in a few magazines are nice, networks tend to look at how many people are actually watching their shows. In that regard, the serialized format is definitely not the only way to go since episodic shows are still very popular with today's audiences. In fact, there is no indication whatsoever that they've ever stopped being very popular.

I would say people care more about Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones rather then Law and Order and NCIS.
I would say how much people care about a show is equal to how many people tune in to see it each week. In that capacity, you're going have to flip that statement around.
An ongoing story with various twists and turns creates more buzz then an episodic show does.
Don't think for a moment that episodic shows don't have their legions of followers. They may not spend all week on the internet talking/complaining about the latest episode of NCIS, but if 20 million of them tune in each week, they just represent a different kind of following (the less vocal, but larger in numbers kind).
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Old August 25 2013, 11:59 PM   #22
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

Maybe we shouldn't be looking for Trek that "fits in". In 1966 and 1987 the thing that defined Trek was that it was different from pretty much everything else that was on.
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Old August 26 2013, 02:02 AM   #23
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

C.E. Evans wrote: View Post
Which of course, doesn't really matter as far as ratings go. While critical praise and spotlighting in a few magazines are nice, networks tend to look at how many people are actually watching their shows. In that regard, the serialized format is definitely not the only way to go since episodic shows are still very popular with today's audiences. In fact, there is no indication whatsoever that they've ever stopped being very popular.


I would say how much people care about a show is equal to how many people tune in to see it each week. In that capacity, you're going have to flip that statement around.
Except NCIS and Law Order are on networks that every one gets, while Game of Thrones and Breaking Bad are on cable channels that not everyone gets, of course the ratings are not the same.

Besides what is the likely of Star Trek showing up on network TV rather then cable TV at this point, it seems cable TV is better able to serve niche programming then network programming does and right now sci fi programming is niche.

Plus there have been several times in recent months where cable TV have gotten more ratings then network TV.

http://www.vulture.com/2013/08/lesso...explosion.html

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/liv...ratings-431948

I really think making a Star trek series that is purely episodic would be a step backwards at this point.

BillJ wrote: View Post
Maybe we shouldn't be looking for Trek that "fits in". In 1966 and 1987 the thing that defined Trek was that it was different from pretty much everything else that was on.
But it should be relevant, not feel like some throw back to a show from the 60s or 80s. Voyager didn't feel very unique because it often felt like a TNG clone and come across as a show that didn't fit with more modern shows in the 90s.
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Old August 26 2013, 05:12 AM   #24
C.E. Evans
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

The Overlord wrote: View Post
C.E. Evans wrote: View Post
Which of course, doesn't really matter as far as ratings go. While critical praise and spotlighting in a few magazines are nice, networks tend to look at how many people are actually watching their shows. In that regard, the serialized format is definitely not the only way to go since episodic shows are still very popular with today's audiences. In fact, there is no indication whatsoever that they've ever stopped being very popular.


I would say how much people care about a show is equal to how many people tune in to see it each week. In that capacity, you're going have to flip that statement around.
Except NCIS and Law Order are on networks that every one gets, while Game of Thrones and Breaking Bad are on cable channels that not everyone gets, of course the ratings are not the same.
It's way more than that. Those shows are just more popular too (they get big ratings in second-run syndication too). You do have a lot of people that simply aren't into serialized shows, they just want to tune into a show without having to keep track of everything that happened since the first episode.
Besides what is the likely of Star Trek showing up on network TV rather then cable TV at this point, it seems cable TV is better able to serve niche programming then network programming does and right now sci fi programming is niche.
The exclusive premium cable is like that, but non-premium cable is increasingly like broadcast television and I believe that any new Trek series will be there in order to get the biggest possible audience rather than a smaller one.
I really think making a Star trek series that is purely episodic would be a step backwards at this point.
That may be your opinion, but it's not one that everyone shares. The Star Trek format is actually ideally suited for the episodic format. That doesn't mean that there can't be story and character arcs along the way, but I doubt we'll see a Trek series where every episode is connected to the one before.
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Old August 26 2013, 10:31 AM   #25
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

JarodRussell wrote: View Post
Today's TV landscape is extremely dull in my opinion. All these depressive, miserable, failed characters running around, intertwined in overly complicated plots that are contrived to no end. So I don't think I would enjoy a show like that.
I agree about the complicated plots. Nowadays it has to be convoluted, which often means the plot trips over itself. Whatever happened to simple (i.e. realistic) plots ?
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Old August 26 2013, 03:46 PM   #26
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

The Overlord wrote: View Post
Many people say we are living in a golden age of television, with many great TV series on cable, so how would a new Star Trek series fit in with a modern TV landscape?

I think a new Star trek series would need a more ongoing story, deeper characterization and more of an edge then say, Voyager had. It can still be optimistic, but have a balance between light and dark moments. Continuity should also matter and it should have a more reoccurring villain.
So a bit more like DSN.
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Old August 26 2013, 09:20 PM   #27
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

BillJ wrote: View Post
Maybe we shouldn't be looking for Trek that "fits in". In 1966 and 1987 the thing that defined Trek was that it was different from pretty much everything else that was on.
That's probably the best description I've heard so far.
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Old August 27 2013, 12:43 AM   #28
AviTrek
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

The Overlord wrote: View Post
Carcazoid wrote: View Post
I'm looking at this from my own perspective, the only one I have.

Watching tv is not a priority in our lives. My wife and I work a lot of hours, and keeping up with a series is hard to do. Most of the shows we like are in reruns, because we missed them in first run.

I've spent more time online today than I have in the last month, and that's because I'm at a standstill in other things.

It's hard to follow a serialized show with all the other things going on. My preference is to watch a bottle show with characters I like, so I don't have to try to keep up with a season long arc.

Some series can do it that way, and others can't.

Take Monk, for example. If you know the premise, you can watch any episode in any order, and it's ok. You don't have to know that last week Adrian had a cold and only got out of bed to save Natalie from a killer to know that in the next episode he would rescue his brother from a poisoned Halloween candy bar.

I prefer to watch episodes of my favorite shows that don't need a setup. I can fill in the blanks myself, and if I was wrong it just makes it that much more fun.
A show cannot revolve around the needs of one or two fans, it has to reach a wide audience and I think today's audience likes shows with ongoing stories. Lots of people end up binge watching an entire season of show on Netflix, so I am not sure your situation is typical of the average modern TV watcher.


Lots of the great TV shows out now depend on a ongoing story, stuff like Breaking bad, House of Cards and Game of Thrones wouldn't work without them and those are the type of shows that get buzz, rather then episodic shows. You cannot try to make a Star Trek show as an 60s or 80s show and expect it survive in today's TV market.
Unless you plan on selling the series to Netflix for first run, the Netflix binge watching doesn't matter. All it represents are viewers who don't watch in first run and instead lower the ratings so the show gets canceled sooner.
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Old August 27 2013, 12:47 AM   #29
AviTrek
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

The Overlord wrote: View Post
C.E. Evans wrote: View Post
The Overlord wrote: View Post

A show cannot revolve around the needs of one or two fans, it has to reach a wide audience and I think today's audience likes shows with ongoing stories.
Actually today's audience likes either shows with ongoing stories or shows with single-episode stories. It's definitely not a case of the former being more popular than the latter since the latter is actually more prevalent on U.S. television. Don't get me wrong, there are indeed very successful shows with ongoing story/soap opera formats, but they are not the only kind of shows that are successful, and they do appeal a wide audience today.
Perhaps, but I would say those are the type of shows getting the most attention and critical praise.

I would say people care more about Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones rather then Law and Order and NCIS. An ongoing story with various twists and turns creates more buzz then an episodic show does.

Critical praise and internet chatter sure, but ratings still favor CSI, ncis, and standalone comedies.
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Old August 27 2013, 03:45 AM   #30
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Re: Making a Star Trek series that fits in with today's TV landscape

It's possible to do story and character arcs without resorting to Lost-style serialization that makes it impossible for the show to have decent pacing if you watch it on a week to week basis. Just have a complete story (beginning, middle, and end) in the episode, change the status quo at the end, and write future episodes with that changed status quo in mind. I'm not exactly sure what model/example of serialization that would best fit under (Mad Men, I guess), but it worked pretty well in Stargate SG-1 and Atlantis.

Other than that, all the stuff I mentioned in this article applies too. Also, I'd like a show that managed to not fall into the "competence and pragmatism = evil" trap that most of the TNG-era and Trek Lit stuff seems to. I know Roddenberry wanted Trek to be an optimistic future, but that doesn't mean the good guys in that future act like they've tossed their common sense and critical thinking abilities into a black hole.
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