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Star Trek Movies XI+ Discuss J.J. Abrams' rebooted Star Trek here.

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Old August 26 2013, 10:53 AM   #1066
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

WarpFactorZ wrote: View Post
I'm going to guess that I've been a fan probably for longer than you've been alive, through every incarnation of ST. I gave up on DS9, Voyager, and Enterprise through fatigue (and real life taking over). The episodes of TOS were at least written by competent sci-fi authors, and had a mild modicum of veracity.
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Old August 26 2013, 04:31 PM   #1067
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

Belz... wrote: View Post
WarpFactorZ wrote: View Post
I'm going to guess that I've been a fan probably for longer than you've been alive, through every incarnation of ST. I gave up on DS9, Voyager, and Enterprise through fatigue (and real life taking over). The episodes of TOS were at least written by competent sci-fi authors, and had a mild modicum of veracity.
Spock's Brain.

All the series had their share of "bad" episodes. I gave up with Enterprise. Although I did go back and watch it on netflix recently, and you could see how tired the writers and the concept of the show was. Although season 4 had some good ideas in it.


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Old August 26 2013, 04:33 PM   #1068
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

Flake wrote: View Post
WTF is going on with artificial gravity then when in every Star Trek episode the crew are thrown all over the place by various jolts to the ship?

WTF is going on here:



Ship spiralling out of control leads to havoc & mayhem on the bridge of Voyager. Where was your evolved scientific reasoning then?!

The line must be drawn here.

That was a cool effect shot.

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Old August 26 2013, 04:39 PM   #1069
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

ComicGuy89 wrote: View Post
cbspock wrote: View Post
Flake wrote: View Post
The whole concept of Star Trek and everything in it is absurd and mostly impossible so fixating on this dodgy gravity is illogical. Instead of dismissing it why not come up with an in-universe technobabble explanation instead?

Centrifugal forces and failing 'gravity systems' coupled with failed 'inertial dampeners' and the 'grav plating' randomly depolarising where causing havoc aboard ship. Easy


Because some Trek fans have become completely anal and forget what the show was about to begin with.

"Roddenberry wanted an open format that allowed for a vast array of stories, all with human conflict at their center. He would tell his writers not to get overwhelmed with the enormity and foreignness of it, and spelled it out in the Star Trek Writer's Guide this way "Joe Friday doesn't stop to explain how his gun works when he pulls it from the holster" The gadgets should not take center stage; the stories instead revolving around the characters" - (These Are the Voyages Season One, page 23)


What a complete difference than TNG where it was all about the tech the tech to tech the tech, and having no conflict between the characters.



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I have to admit you're right. Roddenberry changed the focus of Star Trek by the time of TNG. That's why I still feel that although TNG-onwards is still Star Trek, the shows are all remarkably different in style and focus compared to TOS.
and I think that is why we have the whine fest with the JJ Trek movies. He went back to the original concept and tweaked the characters to account for the timeline changes, we are also seeing the characters pre-series on top of it. The original series never got bogged down with the tech talk. These Are the Voyages is an excellent book, I am still at the beginning of it but it goes right into the concept of what Star Trek was going to be, not what it became over almost 50 years.


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Old August 26 2013, 04:46 PM   #1070
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

Crazy Eddie wrote: View Post
WarpFactorZ wrote: View Post
BillJ wrote: View Post
Have you gotten equally outraged?
Do I have to voice my outrage about every "bad science" scene in this thread?
No, just ANY thread. You've had ample opportunity to do so.

The thing is, if you actually went through all of Star Trek and started nitpicking all the bad science that's gotten a pass over the years... by the time you were finished, you'd probably stop liking Star Trek.

We forgive the sins of Star Trek Into Darkness because it's a fantastic movie and the scene itself is very fun to watch; it's worthy of a of fridge-logic appeal in the court of believability. We don't extend the same leniency to, say, Star Trek Nemesis, because that movie sucked and its many errors just add fuel to the fire.

Sad to say, it's like a high school lunchroom. When you're popular and well liked, people overlook your flaws. When you're unpopular and annoying, people magnify your flaws as a way of putting you down.

cbspock wrote: View Post
Flake wrote: View Post
The whole concept of Star Trek and everything in it is absurd and mostly impossible so fixating on this dodgy gravity is illogical. Instead of dismissing it why not come up with an in-universe technobabble explanation instead?

Centrifugal forces and failing 'gravity systems' coupled with failed 'inertial dampeners' and the 'grav plating' randomly depolarising where causing havoc aboard ship. Easy


Because some Trek fans have become completely anal and forget what the show was about to begin with.

"Roddenberry wanted an open format that allowed for a vast array of stories, all with human conflict at their center. He would tell his writers not to get overwhelmed with the enormity and foreignness of it, and spelled it out in the Star Trek Writer's Guide this way "Joe Friday doesn't stop to explain how his gun works when he pulls it from the holster" The gadgets should not take center stage; the stories instead revolving around the characters" - (These Are the Voyages Season One, page 23)


What a complete difference than TNG where it was all about the tech the tech to tech the tech, and having no conflict between the characters.
And that, IMO, is what made TOS so iconic in the first place. The technology was cool, the ship was even cooler, but it has to be remembered that even the WRITERS didn't really understand how all of that shit worked and for the most part never bothered to delve into it. It's enough that a phaser does what it has been established to do more or less consistently; HOW it does this is hardly important.

This is something I think Abrams has gotten very very right in the last two films. Character-driven space adventure where the technology is just a means to an end and even the space battles turn out to be just a pretext for the next insane stunt that Kirk has to do in order to save the day. Cool scenes and cool tech are one thing, but none of it matters if the characters in the center of it all are weak or uninteresting, and STXI has some of the strongest characterization we've seen since TOS itself.

Just look at Season one of TOS, we saw the phaser being used as more than a weapon. We saw it could heat rocks, be used as a torch to cut through a bulkhead, and drained of its power to charge a shuttlecraft. All with no explanation. Galileo 7 would have had a 10 minute explanation by Geordi of what they were going to do to transfer the power from the phaser to the shuttle. In TOS, Scotty took the phasers from Spock and went to work, not affecting the drama of them being stuck on a planet with a bunch of nasty giant aliens, and a time limit as to when they had to be off that planet to attract the attention of the Enterprise, as well as the clash of personalities between the Galileo 7 crewmembers.


I went into Trek 2009 wanting to hate it. I went away loving it. The scene that sold me on the characters was Spock telling the Vulcan elders to go "live long and prosper" when he decided on Starfleet, and the first meeting of Kirk / McCoy meeting on the shuttle the first time. From then I I was sold, I just went with the rest of the movie. I really loved the character moments in the film even if Nero was a pretty weak villain. I did like Into Darkness, I am sort of glad they got Khan out of the way. Now hopefully they will go with some new ideas, I don't mind if they bring back other characters like Kor, or Kang if they go the Klingon route for the next movie. I would even like to see a movie like Errand of Mercy, Return of the Archons, Bread and Circuses, Immunity Syndrome. I think they do need to get away from the crazy bad guy vs Enterprise mode.

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Old August 26 2013, 05:10 PM   #1071
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

SeerSGB wrote: View Post
Shit Science = Trek Science = Norm.
Pithy. And true of all sci-fi of Trek's type.

It's being done to entertain. I doubt the writers are stupid or lazy about science, or think they are writing for stupid and lazy audiences. The thing is, we all vary in how far we are willing to suspend disbelief, accept internal Trek world inconsistencies, and rationalize the remotely possible and even the truly impossible as at least logical so we can accept it.

I didn't like (still don't like) "Star Wars" when it came out in 1977 because of its science. Light sabers? WTF. (Never bring a light saber to a phaser fight.) Single seat fighters in space that bank into turns and get into dogfights like above Europe in the 1940s? And the fighters only fire out the front? WTF. Everyone has a limit. Obviously, mine being crossed in SW hardly ground the franchise to a halt, and to those who find it highly entertaining, more power to you.

It's all a fantasy world that makes up for the fact that in reality, space is pretty boring. We're very likely to never know if we are alone in this universe, and it may be decades or hundreds of years before a person travels in space farther out than the moon, if at all. Real astronomy and physics are interesting, but as for providing adventure and entertainment, real science sucks.
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Old August 26 2013, 05:21 PM   #1072
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

If you can sell me on the characters in your story believing/accepting the world they're in, then it's 100x easier for me just to sit back and enjoy the movie/show. Sell me the "reality" of the world I'm watching; these tools, these day to day activities, should be uncommon and unremarked--no different to them than getting up and making a pot of coffee is to me. It's when you draw attention to the fiction of the story--over explanation for example--is when you lose me.

At the end of the day Real Space > Movie/TV space. Now, I can read science news the way some people read paperbacks, the stuff is interesting to me. But, yeah--with few exceptions, real space science sucks when depicted on the big screen.
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Old August 26 2013, 06:02 PM   #1073
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

I don't get on the soapbox often, so pardon me if I do this time. Regarding TOS keeping things simpler, by design, I have to agree. And in fact it was a great strength.

However, there were two other key components to TOS, noted time and again, and those were believability and consistency. Paraphrased, in order for viewers to buy into the imagined future they are presenting, and be able to engage in the story itself, the environment had to be believable. This was where the notion of keeping the technology simple comes in; Roddenberry was right, Marshal Dillon didn't explain how his revolver worked before he used it. That wouldn't be believable. I don't give long dissertations when my computer isn't working or when my car won't start.

And that was where the problem with new-era Trek came in. Possibly, GR and the rest felt the need to cater to the fans in this regard, because they felt they expected a degree of "science" in their fiction; then again, perhaps it was because there was an increased fan presence in the production and they wanted it there.

Now, I am by no means saying this is by itself bad. I think the problem with excessive technobabble was that it diminished believability, and much too often distracted from the story. At worst, it might also provide a too-convenient deus ex machina by which to resolve the plot, which was needless to say annoying.

So, yes, downplaying this has proven a strength and wise choice for Abrams. However, one place that I feel he is now lacking, perhaps as a consequence, or perhaps unrelatedly, is in consistency, particularly when it comes to scaling. Similarly, I'm not sure that some of the sci-fi concepts presented in the films are thought out fully enough to be completely believable. Ejecting an escape pod here, trash ejectors there, a ship underwater there. Eh. These things have irked me.

Everyone's mileage varies. Does it compeletely take me out of the film? No. Is it annoying? Kinda. Am I going to attack someone else for enjoying the film because I think they've drank the Kool-Aid? Nah. Why should I?

The one major downside, for me personally, and I think it's one that others may share, is I always enjoyed analyzing the technological aspects of the show... I guess you could say I really liked the science in my fiction. So, when I see inconsistencies that make me befuddled as to how to begin to understand the logic behind certain design aspects that were obviously compromised to serve the story, yes it is annoying. But again, it's not quite a dealbreaker. It's just... disappointing.

But again, I'm not going to sweat it. No Star Trek production has ever gotten everything 100% right. We find ways to rationalize if we want to, and we ignore if we don't.

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Old August 26 2013, 06:08 PM   #1074
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

Praetor wrote: View Post

So, yes, downplaying this has proven a strength and wise choice for Abrams. However, one place that I feel he is now lacking, perhaps as a consequence, or perhaps unrelatedly, is in consistency, particularly when it comes to scaling. Similarly, I'm not sure that some of the sci-fi concepts presented in the films are thought out fully enough to be completely believable. Ejecting an escape pod here, trash ejectors there, a ship underwater there. Eh. These things have irked me.
I'm still not sure why the "ship underwater" bothers people. We watched the TOS version of the Enterprise take a hell of a beating and never come out worse for wear. I was more concerned that it really didn't make sense from a story standpoint.

As far as scaling goes, all one has to do is look at the multiple versions of the ship in TOS. There's no way the two variations could be the same size based on the difference in size of the bridge dome.
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Old August 26 2013, 06:12 PM   #1075
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

The reason the ship being underwater bothers me is quite simply that I always think of the line from TMoST that refers to the ship not being designed to enter an atmosphere. The one time it did that I can recall, in "Tomorrow is Yesterday" it was a problem. It's a relatively minor annoyance for me, others not so much. I keep reminding myself it's not the same ship. And as you said, the only reason it made sense story-wise was to prove Kirk was being reckless. Magnetic flux and transporters, yadda yadda.

And you're completely correct regarding TOS - as I said, no Trek production has ever gotten it completely right. Using stock footage and ending up representing two versions of the ship within the same episode is pretty annoying, which is where that handy ignoring comes into play.

As long as they don't cross the believability line, I'm golden.
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Old August 26 2013, 06:22 PM   #1076
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

I would have accepted the nuEnterprise under water if it was a last desperate attempt in the finale of the film, not something casual in the opening teaser. Where it would have been made clear that it is insane, absolutely irregular and nearly impossible.

The Vengeance chases the Enterprise and Kirk decides to hide the ship on a planet under water, where he thinks Khan/Marcus would never look for a starship, until the warp engines or whatever are repaired. When it's time, the Enterprise rises from the waters to make a surprise attack.
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Old August 26 2013, 06:24 PM   #1077
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

Praetor wrote: View Post
The reason the ship being underwater bothers me is quite simply that I always think of the line from TMoST that refers to the ship not being designed to enter an atmosphere.
That is simply going to come down to how seriously someone takes materials that never made it to the screen. Plus, there's been a lot of Star Trek since "The Making of..." and we've seen starships that can operate in the atmosphere and even land. But then again, wasn't the invention of the transporter tied solely to the fact that they couldn't afford the effects budget that would be required to land the ship every week?

When I think seriously about building ships on the ground and landing them within the context of Star Trek, I really don't see a problem (though it isn't my favorite thing as I too grew up with the Enterprise being a ship that solely traveled the cosmos). But in a society that can manipulate matter and gravity, it doesn't represent a technological stumbling block for me.
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Old August 26 2013, 06:27 PM   #1078
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

JarodRussell wrote: View Post
I would have accepted the nuEnterprise under water if it was a last desperate attempt in the finale of the film, not something casual in the opening teaser. Where it would have been made clear that it is insane, absolutely irregular and nearly impossible.

The Vengeance chases the Enterprise and Kirk decides to hide the ship on a planet under water, where he thinks Khan/Marcus would never look for a starship, until the warp engines or whatever are repaired. When it's time, the Enterprise rises from the waters to make a surprise attack.
Well Scotty does lampshade the scene for us.
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Old August 26 2013, 06:30 PM   #1079
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

SeerSGB wrote: View Post
JarodRussell wrote: View Post
I would have accepted the nuEnterprise under water if it was a last desperate attempt in the finale of the film, not something casual in the opening teaser. Where it would have been made clear that it is insane, absolutely irregular and nearly impossible.

The Vengeance chases the Enterprise and Kirk decides to hide the ship on a planet under water, where he thinks Khan/Marcus would never look for a starship, until the warp engines or whatever are repaired. When it's time, the Enterprise rises from the waters to make a surprise attack.
Well Scotty does lampshade the seen for us.
But it had no reason to be there at all. And no consequences for the ship either. Only Scotty saying one line about it. The ship was just there under water, for a cool visual effects shot, and that was it.

Having to hide the ship under water as part of the climax, because there was no other possibility to save the ship and everyone aboard, that would have made it an essential part of the story, and not just a "it's there to look cool, but have Scotty make a tiny mention about it, in case people have a problem with it" thing.
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Old August 26 2013, 06:35 PM   #1080
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Re: Starship Size Argument™ thread

JarodRussell wrote: View Post
SeerSGB wrote: View Post
JarodRussell wrote: View Post
I would have accepted the nuEnterprise under water if it was a last desperate attempt in the finale of the film, not something casual in the opening teaser. Where it would have been made clear that it is insane, absolutely irregular and nearly impossible.

The Vengeance chases the Enterprise and Kirk decides to hide the ship on a planet under water, where he thinks Khan/Marcus would never look for a starship, until the warp engines or whatever are repaired. When it's time, the Enterprise rises from the waters to make a surprise attack.
Well Scotty does lampshade the seen for us.
But it had no reason to be there at all. And no consequences for the ship either. Only Scotty saying one line about it. The ship was just there under water, for a cool visual effects shot, and that was it.

Having to hide the ship under water as part of the climax, because there was no other possibility to save the ship and everyone aboard, that would have made it an essential part of the story, and not just a "it's there to look cool, but have Scotty make a tiny mention about it, in case people have a problem with it" thing.
Well they did say there was something with the planet'volcano's magnet fields (radiation, can't remember) that was jamming the transporters. Also, I saw it as part of the pay off in Pike's office: Kirk is reckless. He does stuff--more of less--cause it's cool or fun, he needs to grow up. Why put a ship in the ocean? Cause why not, it'll be fun.

Remember, this is a different Enterprise. She isn't built to our spec anymore.
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