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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Misc. Star Trek > Future of Trek

Future of Trek Discussion of future Trek projects.

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Old March 18 2010, 07:07 PM   #1
Modaru
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Series Pitch - The Section

Mods, not sure if this is the right place to share, so please move it if necessary.

I very rarely post, but I've been lurking on the BBS for years. I do have a background in writing and script work, and am not unfamiliar with taking a project like this from initial thought to finished work. As I don't really intend on pitching this anytime soon, here's my brief idea for a TV series that should play well given today's market. I'd love for some feedback and criticism.

The Section

Premise:
A group of Section 31 agents is stuck in Earth's past to ensure that the timeline happens as necessary to ensure the Star Trek future we know. This includes some noteworthy assassinations, starting the Eugenics Wars, and other unsavoury tasks to work towards a better future. Series wouldn't really be setup to be exposed as a Trek series until the end of the premiere episode - and even then it's just loose connections that Trek fans would pick up on, but wouldn't be necessary to enjoy the show. The setting and year for the show could change on a season-by-season basis as the timeline is corrected, and the team is moved to fix a new problem. Cast changes would also occur as team members are killed in action or are changed due to corrections in the timeline.

One line Summary:
24 meets Lost meets Mission: Impossible - action/adventure with character development, backstories, tension, and an ever-changing playing field for the team.

Characters:
Captain Ian Harlowe - early 40's, gritty but charming when necessary. Exceptional thinker, shrewd tactician, and a hard negotiator. Aloof, and has more knowledge of future events than the rest of the group, and is definitely keeping something hidden from the team.

Commander Chris Mitchell - late 30's, best friend of Captain Harlowe and his trusted right hand. More impulsive and action-oriented than the Captain, Chris will take on any mission asked of him.

Agent Kamal Shahyar - 30's energetic, devoutly Muslim. Engineering specialist, great with devices and gadgets.

Agent Alisa Demidova - late 20's - early 30's, linguist and communications specialist. Good at accents.

Agent Mei Arakaki - late 30's-early 40's, medic and biochemist. Dry and macabre sense of humor.

Series Notes:

Group members don't have complete memories - a side effect of their timeline being wiped out. As a result, they're not 100% sure they're doing the right thing when it comes to some drastic measures to repair the timeline.

Group is working to correct the timeline and make sure everything works out as needed.

Characters in the team change as timeline is pieced back together - new memories, even new people to replace other characters. Specific idea: Chris Mitchell is actually supposed to be Christine Mitchell, the Captain's wife. Harlowe is on a personal mission to restore his wife to the timeline.
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Old March 18 2010, 07:46 PM   #2
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Re: Series Pitch - The Section

I'd just as soon never hear another thing about Section 31, thanks - it's a very whitebread fantasy of cloak-and-dagger, "dark" nonsense.

This kind of premise really doesn't have a thing to do with Star Trek, per se, so it might as well be something else.
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Old March 19 2010, 03:49 AM   #3
Anthony Sabre
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Re: Series Pitch - The Section

I liked Section 31 but I seriously doubt a series based around it would succeed. It would be too much of a departure from the typical Trek series. S31 was created on DS9 and there are only three episodes based around it that appeared during the series. I have to agree with Dennis that less of 31 is better.
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Old March 19 2010, 04:03 AM   #4
Temis the Vorta
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Re: Series Pitch - The Section

A group of Section 31 agents is stuck in Earth's past to ensure that the timeline happens as necessary to ensure the Star Trek future we know.
Stop right there: this is too contrived and too dependent on other series. Why should the audience be so invested in the Star Trek future we know? Most of your potential viewers will be new fans as of Abram's movie, who neither know nor care about all the rest of Star Trek lore. If your premise is meaningless to the audience, they won't tune in.

Those who do know will still chafe at the implied straightjacket of a storyline being artificially forced in a certain direction. That was one of the biggest flaws of ENT. Please don't repeat it.

My advice is to go for any sci fi premise other than time travel, which is very rarely written well. It's just damn hard. There are plenty of great potential premises in Star Trek without stumbling straight into the quicksand of time travel once again.

To make S31 fit into a Trek story means you have to think of it like DS9 did: as a challenge to the political assumptions of Star Trek. In the end, S31 must always be wrong; otherwise, what you have isn't Star Trek anymore. However, you might be able to make good stories from them making a good case for themselves, even if they are bound to lose. A whole series of such stories would be tougher to pull off. You're forcing us to root for people who must always be on the losing side.
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Old March 21 2010, 05:36 AM   #5
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Re: Series Pitch - The Section

Why do people like Section 31 anyways? They're a bunch of dangerous vigilantes. And that's putting it lightly. War criminals may be a more apt description.

And the premise - yeah, I think it would work better unshackled from Star Trek.
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Old March 21 2010, 08:50 PM   #6
Temis the Vorta
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Re: Series Pitch - The Section

S31 works when they are placed in opposition to Our Starfleet Heroes. Yknow when Obama said in the State of the Union that the choice between our values and our security is a false one? Not everyone bought that. S31 gives voice to that skepticism. However, since Star Trek believes in Obama (or maybe it's the other way around) , S31 will always lose.

So why bother with S31 if they're just bound to lose? Because if you are going to present Star Trek values in a dramatic context, there needs to be some other side to contrast them with. Otherwise, there's no way to dramatize them at all, and considering that they're kinda at the heart of Star Trek, shouldn't they get some airtime?

The Klingons, Borg, etc can't dramatize those values because they aren't threats to those values. Only S31 can do that. What the Klingons, Borg, etc do is threaten Federation security, which is less central to "What Star Trek Is" than Star Trek values are. Which makes S31 a better foe than the Klingons, Borg, etc if "What Star Trek Is" is something that interests you, versus interstellar warfare and intrigue of the sort you could get from any space opera show.

The next step is the nuBSG approach: let's have S31 and we don't know whether they will win or lose. That's better drama - preordained conclusions are kinda boring - but it's outside what I would call the bounds of Star Trek. And besides, we also know the Klingons, Borg, etc are also destined to lose, so it's no more boring than what we're used to seeing.
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Old March 22 2010, 04:58 AM   #7
Admiral_Young
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Re: Series Pitch - The Section

I could see agents of the Temporal Time Agency becoming involved but why would Section 31 send agents into the past to assure that the future still happened? That would mean that someone or another group would have had to go back and disrupt things in the first place. Section 31 is an interesting aspect of the Star Trek mythos but I don't think it has merit on its own to support an entire series premise. I like my USS Kelvin idea as it works in either universe despite knowing what the fate of the ship is in the JJ universe, that never stopped Enterprise from airing.
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Old March 22 2010, 04:25 PM   #8
therealfoxbat
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Re: Series Pitch - The Section

Gene Roddenberry attempted something very similar to this idea in 1968, except instead of Section 31, the main characters were Gary Seven and Roberta Lincoln...

Assignment: Earth was actually the pilot for that series, but NBC didn't take the bait...
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Old March 25 2010, 11:30 PM   #9
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Re: Series Pitch - The Section

therealfoxbat wrote: View Post
Gene Roddenberry attempted something very similar to this idea in 1968, except instead of Section 31, the main characters were Gary Seven and Roberta Lincoln...

Assignment: Earth was actually the pilot for that series, but NBC didn't take the bait...
I had always thought that this idea, produced currently, might make a nice spin off of trek. I think it could be quite interesting and enjoyable.
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Old April 6 2010, 01:11 AM   #10
xortex
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Re: Series Pitch - The Section

Sounds like Odyssey 5 which was aweful.
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