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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek Movies > Star Trek Movies I-X

Star Trek Movies I-X Discuss the first ten big screen outings in this forum!

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Old November 2 2013, 06:06 PM   #196
BillJ
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

Melakon wrote: View Post

Part of the impression may be due to casting. Alan Ruck is quite talented, but seems to specialize with slightly introverted characters.
I was just about to point this out.

Ruck doesn't have much of a "command presence", probably one of the reasons he was chosen. So Shatner looked even more in control of the scene.
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Old November 3 2013, 06:56 AM   #197
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

2takesfrakes wrote: View Post
Greg Cox wrote: View Post
2takesfrakes wrote: View Post

And for as much as I love TOS for all its camp and sense of adventure, I'm sure we can also agree that The Next Generation was Gene Roddenberry's pièce de résistance.
I admit this makes me chuckle. Since when have we Trekkies ever agreed on anything? As this board proves every day.

Seriously, I'm not sure you can assume there's some sort of consensus on this point . . . .
Well ... perhaps, it was foolish and vain of me to expect agreement. But Next Generation took STAR TREK to the franchise level and did it so well, that I was confident agreement was inevitable.

However, as Shatner so memorably put it in his own Valentine to Kirk - THE FINAL FRONTIER:

"... I was wrong."
I read somewhere that Shatner got his story idea for STV from GR himself -the idea of finding god. Something Gene always wanted to do (aside from that Kennedy thing)
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Old November 3 2013, 07:19 AM   #198
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

Sran wrote: View Post
And several of the novels capture Kirk's thoughts about Harriman during those scenes. Kirk seemed to think Harriman would do well as he gained more experience and actually thought it was the fault of Starfleet that the Enterprise would be out of spacedock without proper staff or equipment aboard, not Harriman.
With respect to the issue of being ill-equipped, that's really not how I saw the scene play out at all. Kirk's line, "You left Spacedock without a tractor beam?" coupled with Shatner's delivery sounds exactly like a personal admonishment. Orders or not, and whatever the consequences to his career, Kirk wouldn't have left Spacedock so ill-prepared, is what he's saying. By implication, Kirk regarded ship's preparedness as ultimately the captain's responsibility.

As for the question of how Kirk thought Harriman might do in the future, I do agree that "Risk is part of the game if you want to sit in that chair" could easily read as Kirk giving Harriman another lesson about the captaincy, under the belief that his words weren't utterly wasted.

Edited to Add: Before someone can say, but what about Kirk taking out the refit Enterprise in TMP while she was still not spaceworthy, that was a bona fide emergency; the Enterprise-B was not launched under an emergency.
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Old November 3 2013, 07:40 AM   #199
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

2takesfrakes wrote: View Post
And for as much as I love TOS for all its camp and sense of adventure, I'm sure we can also agree that The Next Generation was Gene Roddenberry's pièce de résistance.
wha? really?
oh, and look up "camp."



The Umbrella Corporation wrote:
I read somewhere that Shatner got his story idea for STV from GR himself -the idea of finding god. Something Gene always wanted to do (aside from that Kennedy thing)
yup - TFF is extremely Rodenberryesque.
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Old November 3 2013, 11:11 AM   #200
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl...o3=&o4=&s=camp


Adjective
•S: (adj) camp, campy
(providing sophisticated amusement by virtue of having artificially (and vulgarly) mannered or banal or sentimental qualities) "they played up the silliness of their roles for camp effect"; "campy Hollywood musicals of the 1940's"
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Old November 3 2013, 11:29 AM   #201
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

Harriman's scene is not a cameo, walk-on part, where having an awkward actor in an ill-fitting uniform was necessary to make an immediate connection in audience's mind that he was inferior in Kirk's presence.

But the director's using this made-for-T.V. mentality by
casting the Harriman character thus, perhaps he was just disinterested in the assignment of GENERATIONS, or maybe he's just not that good. But Harriman didn't have to look like a spaz and act like a nervous nelly to showcase Kirk's ability to lead in an emergency situation. It's just this lazy, get-it-in-the-can quick and dirty mindset at work, here.

And again, Harriman's a Captain, assigned STARFLEET's Flagship. Had he been more Decker-like, in casting and portrayal, and had the director been worthy of the project, the writing, such as it was, would've held up so much better. All this underscores, really, how a writer can be made to look good or bad, regardless of what's in the script. What's on the page isn't necessarily always on the stage.
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Old November 4 2013, 04:17 AM   #202
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
Before someone can say, but what about Kirk taking out the refit Enterprise in TMP while she was still not spaceworthy, that was a bona fide emergency; the Enterprise-B was not launched under an emergency.
My impression of the launch, rightly or wrongly, is that it only intended to be the 'official' launch, a kind of publicity stunt on the part of Starfleet command. Hence why Jim, Pavel and Scotty are wheeled out, and all those reporters are on board, etc. Harriman even says at one point that they're only intending to make a quick trip out and back. Evidently the "real" launch of the ship is on Tuesday (when it's supposed to be getting all this extra staff and equipment).

I do think Harriman handles himself poorly in a crisis, but the Enterprise-B launch in GENs is clearly not a ship that is service-ready by any measure.
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Old November 4 2013, 04:45 AM   #203
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

Lance wrote: View Post
CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
Before someone can say, but what about Kirk taking out the refit Enterprise in TMP while she was still not spaceworthy, that was a bona fide emergency; the Enterprise-B was not launched under an emergency.
My impression of the launch, rightly or wrongly, is that it only intended to be the 'official' launch, a kind of publicity stunt on the part of Starfleet command. Hence why Jim, Pavel and Scotty are wheeled out, and all those reporters are on board, etc. Harriman even says at one point that they're only intending to make a quick trip out and back. Evidently the "real" launch of the ship is on Tuesday (when it's supposed to be getting all this extra staff and equipment).

I do think Harriman handles himself poorly in a crisis, but the Enterprise-B launch in GENs is clearly not a ship that is service-ready by any measure.
Clearly the launched shown in GEN was for publicity, and Kirk knew that of course, but that doesn't change my opinion of what Kirk regardless saw as the captain's responsibility. Kirk probably thought that more priority should have been given to getting the ship ready and less to organizing pomp.
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Old November 4 2013, 04:50 AM   #204
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
Clearly the launched shown in GEN was for publicity, and Kirk knew that of course, but that doesn't change my opinion of what Kirk regardless saw as the captain's responsibility. Kirk probably thought that more priority should have been given to getting the ship ready and less to organizing pomp.
As anyone in his position would. Starships aren't toys to be shown off whenever they're put into service. It's baffling (speaking from an in-universe perspective) that the Federation would have allowed a group of journalists aboard a ship, even for a seemingly routine launch.

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Old November 4 2013, 08:19 AM   #205
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

Sran wrote: View Post
CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
Clearly the launched shown in GEN was for publicity, and Kirk knew that of course, but that doesn't change my opinion of what Kirk regardless saw as the captain's responsibility. Kirk probably thought that more priority should have been given to getting the ship ready and less to organizing pomp.
As anyone in his position would. Starships aren't toys to be shown off whenever they're put into service. It's baffling (speaking from an in-universe perspective) that the Federation would have allowed a group of journalists aboard a ship, even for a seemingly routine launch.
I do think there is an explanation given for that. One of the questions that the reporters ask Kirk gives the game away:

"Captain, ...this is the first Starship Enterprise in thirty years without James T. Kirk in command. How do you feel about that, sir?"
Starfleet clearly understands that Kirk and his crew have come to be seen as living legends. And that, even though they were not the first crew of the Starship Enterprise, their exploits have apparently become so entwined with the name of ship, and the ship in itself has become a part of that legend. So, they're very aware, from a PR perspective, that they need to manage the transition to this new crew being the 'faces' of their most famous Starship instead of Kirk and co. The faux "launch" seen in GENS is whole constructed for this purpose. It's clearly been engineered by PR types purely for the benefit of the media, which of course means the exercise goes terribly wrong given James T. Kirk dies on the voyage. I'd have liked to have seen the media frenzy when they got home!

Obviously the Enterprise-B's true launch as a fully operational ship on regular duties would have been scheduled for 'next Tuesday', but given what happens to her in the Nexus I wouldn't be surprised if her launch was put back while repairs were made. All in all, Starfleet ended up with the opposite of what they wanted: they wanted to create a smooth clean image for the launch of this new Starship Enterprise crew, and what they ended up with was a PR disaster on all counts.
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Old November 4 2013, 02:08 PM   #206
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

If key components weren't even scheduled to arrive until "next Tuesday," then the proper launch of the ship would have to be well after that, though, since it would take time to install and test them.
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Old November 4 2013, 04:07 PM   #207
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

^ Indeed, Christopher. Even more evidence that what we saw in GENS was clearly not the 'real' launch of the Ent-B; but was, rather, a kind of pre-launch "publicity drive" for the benefit of spinning the PR and shilling the new crew to the media. 1701-B clearly isn't even fully assembled yet. It's in just about good enough condition for a "run around the block", but when the Nexus situation comes up both the ship and her new crew are completely unprepared for it.

Compare this, for arguments sake, to the launch of the refit in TMP, where the clear inference is that the ship (despite being untested) is in a mostly duty-ready condition. A few hiccups with the systems are ironed out as they go, but the ship is effectively launched in response to V'ger, and then seemingly goes into regular service immediately after the V'ger crisis is over.

Now the 1701-A in TFF is another kettle of fish again. There's no Earthly reason at all why they had to send that ship. Sure, Kirk and crew were assigned to Enterprise, and Admiral Bennett clearly wanted their unique experience, but given the fact that 1701-A is clearly not ready for service in that movie, it would have been more logical to assign them to another ship for the duration of the mission.
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Old November 4 2013, 07:43 PM   #208
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

Although in both TMP and GEN, it makes no sense that there's only one ship available that close to Earth, the capital of the whole darn Federation.
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Old November 4 2013, 08:35 PM   #209
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

Lance wrote: View Post
Now the 1701-A in TFF is another kettle of fish again. There's no Earthly reason at all why they had to send that ship. Sure, Kirk and crew were assigned to Enterprise, and Admiral Bennett clearly wanted their unique experience, but given the fact that 1701-A is clearly not ready for service in that movie, it would have been more logical to assign them to another ship for the duration of the mission.
You're mistaken. 1701-A in The Final Frontier is fundamentally ready for service. It's embarrassing to have glitches in the turbolift doors or the ship's log recorder, but none of those are essential systems. The only mission-critical system that wasn't working was the transporters, and those were touch-and-go, with a considerable chance that they'd be working by the time they were needed. And since there were acceptable alternate methods of doing the rescue that transporters might be used for, even those weren't properly mission-critical, just, darned convenient.

(Hm. Had the Enterprise had working transporters, then how would the hostage rescue on Nimbus III have shaken out? Specifically, how would what's-his-name have taken over the ship after all?)
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Old November 4 2013, 08:43 PM   #210
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Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

Christopher wrote: View Post
Although in both TMP and GEN, it makes no sense that there's only one ship available that close to Earth, the capital of the whole darn Federation.
Agreed. The in-universe explanation from David R. George's Crucible series is that Admiral Nogura ignored Kirk's advice to delay the deep-space missions of several vessels because the latter was concerned about Romulan and Klingon incursions into Federation space. When V'Ger showed up a few weeks later, Nogura conceded that had he listened to Kirk, more ships could have intercepted V'Ger before the Enterprise would have been needed, this avoiding the transporter and wormhole accidents that plagued the start of the mission.

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