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Future of Trek Discussion of future Trek projects.

View Poll Results: Do fans want the prime timeline back?
I'm a fan and I want the Prime timeline back. 185 56.06%
I'm a fan and I don't want the Prime timeline back. 57 17.27%
I'm a fan and wouldn't mind if it came back. 37 11.21%
I don't care, just give me Trek! 45 13.64%
I don't know. 6 1.82%
Voters: 330. You may not vote on this poll

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Old October 3 2013, 01:32 AM   #226
Greg Cox
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

^ Exactly. Look at episodes like "Obsession" or "Conscience of the King" where Spock and/or McCoy have to tell Kirk when he's out of line or behaving irrationally. Or in "The Corbomite Maneuver," where McCoy chides Kirk for pushing that young officer too hard. Or in TMP, when people question Kirk's motives for seizing command of the Enterprise. Or even in The Final Frontier when McCoy has to rein Kirk in at one point. "You're pushing, Jim. Let your people do their jobs."

Kirk is a passionate, impulsive guy. He needs a "voice of reason" sometimes, in either timeline.
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Old October 3 2013, 01:43 AM   #227
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

Also, it's easy to criticize something you didn't like, but I notice the lack of suggesting a specific alternative.

And frankly, I liked the part where after Scotty's resigned he addresses Kirk by his first name and begs him not to fire the torpedoes.

I fail to see the whining here.
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Old October 3 2013, 02:53 AM   #228
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

@BillJ: I may have gone from posting too little information to too much. To sum up my loooong post above, "junk cinema" has nothing to do with who likes or doesn't like the film; my point is that even many of those who like the film are essentially defending it (although they don't think of it this way) in terms of its being junk cinema (this being what I diagnose many don't-overthink-it-just-enjoy-the-ride defenses to be).

The reason I harshed on you for trying to bring up statistics is that -- beyond recognizing the pattern in many people, both pro- and con- the films -- I really cannot quantify it and do not claim to. I just recognize it as a commonplace thing that I myself have done and that also characterizes a very common tack in apologetics for the Abrams films. It really has nothing to do with 10 percent of this or 90 percent of that, I should really have just left your Rotten Tomatoes numbers alone as that just further confused things.

DonIago wrote:
Also, it's easy to criticize something you didn't like, but I notice the lack of suggesting a specific alternative.
Oh, I've got a very specific alternative. Put me in charge of the writing staff.

Unfortunately, Abrams didn't seem to warm to that idea. He keeps avoiding me and changing his cell number. I'm sure it's just a misunderstanding...
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Old October 3 2013, 03:01 AM   #229
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

Greg Cox wrote: View Post
^ Exactly. Look at episodes like "Obsession" or "Conscience of the King" where Spock and/or McCoy have to tell Kirk when he's out of line or behaving irrationally.
There's a pretty key threshold between "pushes too hard at his job" and "acts unprofessionally." It was common for people to have to tell Kirk "you're pushing too hard" [cue "that's what she said" joke]. It was not common for people to have to tell him to not put unknown explosives on his ship or to not dive it into the bottom of oceans. It's at that point -- I take to be Faranci's argument, and I think he's correct -- that Scotty is explaining bad writing in the guise of character dynamic.

(This ties into my point about "junk cinema," incidentally: the pattern of defending a questionable writing decision in either Abrams film by comparing it to superficially similar writing decisions in prior film or television that really aren't comparable at all. Rose-tinted analogy, I think one might call it. Also something I've caught myself doing when I was on the other side of conversations like this one.)
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Old October 3 2013, 03:24 AM   #230
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

Last time I checked, there was never any evidence presented that Starfleet vessels weren't capable of going underwater. While Scotty wasn't happy about it there's nothing to suggest it was inherently risky.

As for the unknown explosives, it's made pretty damn obvious that Kirk isn't considering the situation clearly, and short of Spock's death (and we saw how Kirk handled that), I'm not sure we've seen him at quite this point before.
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Old October 3 2013, 03:38 AM   #231
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

DonIago wrote: View Post
Last time I checked, there was never any evidence presented that Starfleet vessels weren't capable of going underwater.
IMO it is really not the sort of thing you should require "evidence" for -- whether or not it's possible to sneak it through holes in the canon, it's a bad writing decision. There is no reason not to have the spaceship hiding in space except to get Zoe Saldana in a wetsuit (which if one was really that intent on it could be achieved in other ways). YMMV.
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Old October 3 2013, 04:20 AM   #232
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

BigJake wrote: View Post
DonIago wrote: View Post
Last time I checked, there was never any evidence presented that Starfleet vessels weren't capable of going underwater.
IMO it is really not the sort of thing you should require "evidence" for -- whether or not it's possible to sneak it through holes in the canon, it's a bad writing decision. There is no reason not to have the spaceship hiding in space except to get Zoe Saldana in a wetsuit (which if one was really that intent on it could be achieved in other ways). YMMV.
Why is it a bad writing decision? Explain that.

BigJake wrote: View Post
Greg Cox wrote: View Post
^ Exactly. Look at episodes like "Obsession" or "Conscience of the King" where Spock and/or McCoy have to tell Kirk when he's out of line or behaving irrationally.
There's a pretty key threshold between "pushes too hard at his job" and "acts unprofessionally." It was common for people to have to tell Kirk "you're pushing too hard" [cue "that's what she said" joke]. It was not common for people to have to tell him to not put unknown explosives on his ship or to not dive it into the bottom of oceans. It's at that point -- I take to be Faranci's argument, and I think he's correct -- that Scotty is explaining bad writing in the guise of character dynamic.

(This ties into my point about "junk cinema," incidentally: the pattern of defending a questionable writing decision in either Abrams film by comparing it to superficially similar writing decisions in prior film or television that really aren't comparable at all. Rose-tinted analogy, I think one might call it. Also something I've caught myself doing when I was on the other side of conversations like this one.)
I hope you realize that Greg Cox is a professional writer and editor who writes the various Star Trek characters (including James Kirk) on a regular basis and by most accounts does pretty good job with them.

Kirk was always doing things that placed his ship and crew in danger. His obsessions with Kodos and the cloud creature resulted in deaths and near deaths of crew members. He also had a bad habit of letting people on board who should have been in the brig rather than given free run of the ship. The former is of course more conducive to drama and excitement. Kirk is also a character who's no stranger to "unprofessional" behavior. His open disdain for bureaucrats and habit of ignoring or disobeying orders is legendary.

"Junk Cinema" and "Intellectual Cinema" have a very buzzwordy sound to them. Cool phrases to toss into a conversation but meaningless. As is "Rose tinted analogy".
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Old October 3 2013, 04:26 AM   #233
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

Geoff Peterson wrote: View Post
Why is it a bad writing decision? Explain that.
On account of a spaceship has all of space to hide in, wherein it would not be visible to the natives except as a point of light, et voila: no contrived Prime Directive problem.

I hope you realize that [credentialism snipped]
Do I seem Insufficiently Awed? For the record, I have nothing but respect for all working writers and yes, I recognized Greg's name and no, I do not evaluate people's arguments based on their credentials and I hope you don't either.
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Old October 3 2013, 04:47 AM   #234
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

BigJake wrote: View Post
Geoff Peterson wrote: View Post
Why is it a bad writing decision? Explain that.
On account of a spaceship has all of space to hide in, wherein it would not be visible to the natives except as a point of light, et voila: no contrived Prime Directive problem.
I'll need more than that.

I hope you realize that [credentialism snipped]
Do I seem Insufficiently Awed? For the record, I have nothing but respect for all working writers and yes, I recognized Greg's name and no, I do not evaluate people's arguments based on their credentials and I hope you don't either.
You being awed or not awed isn't the point. It's just that Greg is a guy who writes Kirk and does it quite well, so when he talks about who Kirk is as a character I think he has some insight.
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Old October 3 2013, 05:15 AM   #235
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

Geoff Peterson wrote: View Post
I'll need more than that.
With greatest respect, I'll need a good reason for you to need more.

You being awed or not awed isn't the point.
Good. Then you should be quite content to let Greg's insights and arguments stand on their own merit. If he doesn't feel the need to brandish his credentials at me, IMO there is no reason you should.
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Old October 3 2013, 05:26 AM   #236
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

Geoff Peterson wrote: View Post
"Junk Cinema" and "Intellectual Cinema" have a very buzzwordy sound to them. Cool phrases to toss into a conversation but meaningless. As is "Rose tinted analogy".
I respectfully disagree. "Junk Cinema" describes something specific: cinema that prioritizes spectacle over other considerations and expects the viewer to come along for the ride while excusing other inadequacies. I think it's actually a pretty relevant descriptor of plenty of cinema today, and -- although I do think there is such a thing as bad and good Junk Cinema -- it is not something I am using to describe Unmitigated Cinematic Eeeevil. ("Intellectual Cinema" is your own look-out. I have nowhere used or endorsed any such term.)

I hardly think "Rose-Tinted Analogy" is meaningless either, the earlier part of your addition to your post being another example of why. Kirk bucking the bureaucracy to Get Things Done and Kirk being deliberately written to do stupid things in order to get a shot of the Enterprise rising magnificently from the sea are not analogous tropes. Whether or not you care for my neologism doesn't change whether that's a flawed argument to make.
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Old October 3 2013, 06:07 AM   #237
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

BigJake wrote: View Post
Geoff Peterson wrote: View Post
I'll need more than that.
With respect, I'll need a good reason for you to need more.
Because I asked. (and asked politely )

You being awed or not awed isn't the point.
Good. Then you should be quite content to let Greg's insights and arguments stand on their own merit. If he doesn't feel the need to brandish his credentials at me, IMO there is no reason you should.
I was just wondering if you were aware Greg had a professional "relationship" with the character of Kirk. His insights into the character come from that (as well as being a fan). When discussing the character of James Kirk, who he is and what he does, the insights of a writer who works with the character on a regular basis has merit based on that.

I respectfully disagree. "Junk Cinema" describes something specific: cinema that prioritizes spectacle over other considerations and expects the viewer to come along for the ride while excusing other inadequacies. I think it's actually a pretty relevant descriptor of plenty of cinema today, and -- although I do think there is such a thing as bad and good Junk Cinema -- it is not something I am using to describe Unmitigated Cinematic Eeeevil. ("Intellectual Cinema" is your own look-out. I have nowhere used or endorsed any such term.)
You used a similar phrase in a couple of posts. Pretty sure it included a word derived from intellect and a synonym for movie.

I hardly think "Rose-Tinted Analogy" is meaningless either, the earlier part of your addition to your post being another example of why. Kirk bucking the bureaucracy to Get Things Done and Kirk being deliberately written to do stupid things in order to get a shot of the Enterprise rising magnificently from the sea are not analogous tropes. Whether or not you care for my neologism doesn't change whether that's a flawed argument to make.
I knew you'd call me out on that. I might be a masochist.

Rose tinted usually implies viewing something through the haze of nostalgia and making the past seem better. That doesn't really happen when folks try to compare New trek to Old. It's more of blinders off type of comparison. So I don't think the phrase works.

Kirk bucked bureaucracy because the bureaucrats on the show tended to be jerks/antagonists. Of course in the case of Baris, he was right and Kirk was wrong. Though neither had an idea of the direction of the threat. I didn't draw a parallel between Kirk's attitude toward bureaucrats and the ship in the ocean, so yeah they aren't the same trope. Not sure what trope the ship in the ocean is. Is object out of place a trope?
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Old October 3 2013, 06:16 AM   #238
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

Geoff Peterson wrote: View Post
Because I asked. (and asked politely )
Well, okay, I'm willing to make allowances for idiosyncracies about the difference between "asked politely" and "peremptorily demanded"... but perhaps you can tell me what's lacking in my response that you require to be filled in?

I was just wondering if you were aware Greg had a professional "relationship" with the character of Kirk.
Then be reassured. I am and have been aware ABOUT GREG, and we can now move on.

[EDIT: Just to be absolutely clear: I've worked for coming up on twenty years in the arts and spent most of those working with professional writers from all ends of the publishing spectrum. I respect and admire anyone who makes a living at writing -- Q knows it isn't easy -- but you are not going to impress me with the "ooooh he's a professional writer" business no matter how many times you repeat it. You should probably stop.]

You used a similar phrase in a couple of posts. Pretty sure it included a word derived from intellect and a synonym for movie.
I'm pretty sure this is wrong; at any rate I'm not recollecting it. If you can point me to the post in question?

[EDIT: Perhaps you think that I was saying this by claiming that Trek could be "intelligent"? If so, I did say that, but I also explained very clearly what bar "intelligent" was clearing for me. That has nothing to do with it being "Intellectual," which is a whole different category.]

Rose tinted usually implies viewing something through the haze of nostalgia and making the past seem better. That doesn't really happen when folks try to compare New trek to Old. It's more of blinders off type of comparison.
"Rose-tinted" as I'm using it simply means casting something in a favourable light that it has not earned. I'm not aware of the "haze of nostalgia" sub-definition and it may not surprise you to learn that the "blinders off type of comparison" does not convince me on its face. Although I completely understand that this is what many people think they are engaging in. Again... I've been there.
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Old October 3 2013, 06:41 AM   #239
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

BillJ wrote: View Post

David.Blue wrote: View Post

I firmly believe had STID been a better film, a more dramatic film, one that engaged me emotionally, it would have made more money.
Everyone thinks that if something was done more to their taste that it would've done better. There is no way to ever prove it.
Fair enough.

There are things that I would've liked to have seen in the film but I have no doubt that it would've made it a mess. One of the things I enjoy about the films are the fact that the plots are pretty straight-forward and to the point. I don't need the characters to stand around and painfully dissect the events going on around them. YMMV.
Well, I was emotionally involved as well as entertained by WOK and by TVH, a bit less so by TUC. Consider also other science fiction/adventure films that both thrilled and moved--Aliens for example, or The Empire Strikes Back. Look further back and you can find the Czech film Ikaris or the 1950s classic Forbidden Planet. Or the Soviet film Planet of Storms.

I would argue that "roller coaster" movies are fun and all, but when you combine the thrills with a story in which we the audience really care about what happens, the result tends to end up more popular. Methinks STID had a lot of the elements to achieve that, but didn't really pursue it. We could have done with couple of fewer explosions (and a lot fewer lens flares--those were DAMN distracting) and more rising tension, emerging from the characters and the fact we've invested emotionally in them (them, not previous versions of the same character). LOTR did it. Even the last few James Bond films managed it.
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Old October 3 2013, 06:47 AM   #240
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Re: Do fans want the prime timeline back? Part 2: Poll edition.

David.Blue wrote: View Post
Or the Soviet film Planet of Storms.
David.Blue, you sultry minx, stop fallin' in love with me.
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