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The Next Generation All Good Things come to an end...but not here.

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Old May 30 2013, 05:09 AM   #1
AdmiralScreed
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Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

So tonight I rewatched TBOBW on the special edition blu ray. Honestly, it's not as amazing as I remember it being. Part 1 is good. Lots of drama, tension, and action. Picard's fears about the impending battle, the conflict between Riker and Shelby, Riker pondering about his future in Starfleet....this was all great! The buildup to the Borg appearing was paced well and effective. Part 2 is what really brings it down for me though. I'm not just going to criticize the 'sleep' solution. For a conflict of this scale with such huge ramifications for the future, it seemed like not an awful lot happened. Where were the Klingons, Romulans, and the other superpowers? Why was there only a single Borg cube? This felt like a conflict between the Enterprise and the Borg, rather thana conflict between the the Federation, it's allies, and the Borg. The stakes never felt very high to me. Once Picard was saved the tension just dissolved. I can understand if this episode was a real shocker the first time around, especially if you had just watched part 1 and had months to wait before part 2. But in retrospective, is this episode really as good as you remembered?
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Old May 30 2013, 05:24 AM   #2
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

Yes, they are as good as I remember.

Perhaps the reason for the quality split in the episodes is that they weren't written together; IIRC the first part was written just as TNG was taking off with huge success and when they took a break between seasons the writers/producers weren't even considering what to do for part 2 until the fourth season began. So they might have painted themselves into a corner in terms of writing their way out. I agree the conclusion could have been a bit more exciting than putting them to sleep.

I also want to add that re-watching TBOBW should also include "Family" as the third part. Although no where near the amount of action/excitement than the two previous, it's good because it humanizes Picard totally after such an emotional ordeal.
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Old May 30 2013, 05:27 AM   #3
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

I'm actually working my way through the Borg episodes of Trek

This morning I watched both VOY Scorpion and TNG First Contact. Scorpion was ok, not a great as my first viewing. It's certainly elevated by the presence and urgency of the threat Species 8472 added. Although the neutering of that awesome race occurred shortly after this episode. Scorpion I find is above average VOY on par with Equinox.

First Contact was better than I remember and still holds up as one of the best Trek films. Having recently seen STID, and discussed how TWOK/NEM/XI/STID are all the same movie with variations. FC was refreshing to view and really was TNG at it's best.


But BOBW though? I intend to get through tonight. I shall post my views after i conclude the episode. For good measure I'll include Q Who as well.
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Old May 30 2013, 05:28 AM   #4
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

Well I agree part 1 holds up a lot better than part 2. however, here is how I see it for some of your questions:

Where were the Klingons, Romulans, and the other superpowers?
I think it can be argued that when the Borg hit both the Federation and Romulan outposts, they determined the Federation the greater threat and attacked the UFP, first. From the Romulan POV, they were content to sit back and see how it played out. From the Klingon POV, maybe they didn't have time to mobilize, or couldn't due to internal issues. No doubt the Council was starting to fracture after Sins of the Father. Cardassians were probably experiencing the beginnings of the collapse of their empire on planets like Bajor and other conquered lands. And the Dominion had not been encountered yet. The Gorn, Breen, and Tholians are more or less second-rate powers.

Why was there only a single Borg cube?
Good question. Perhaps they felt it was sufficiently adapted since the last encounter with Enterprise D and the outposts the Borg destroyed, and thought 1 was enough. The real question is why did the Borg only send just 1 cube in FC, after TBOBW it was obvious more than one was needed.
This felt like a conflict between the Enterprise and the Borg, rather thana conflict between the the Federation, it's allies, and the Borg.
Probably because the Enterprise was pretty much the only ship left from the federation Fleet, after Wolf 359. And as for the allies, they were either too far away and\or had their internal problems.

The stakes never felt very high to me. Once Picard was saved the tension just dissolved. I can understand if this episode was a real shocker the first time around, especially if you had just watched part 1 and had months to wait before part 2. But in retrospective, is this episode really as good as you remembered?
Well the Stakes seemed high, but tension seemed less, once Picard was rescued. Part 1 was a shocker and a real cliff hanger first time around. I was in the service when Part 2 premiered (I had just graduated Basic and was in AIT at the time, preparring to go to Gulf War 1) and I remember all of us who were trek fans crowded around the TV for Part 2(every last one of us enthralled) because we all just "had to know" how the Borg were going to be defeated! It was definitely suspenseful and exciting.

When I watch it now, Part 1 reamains just as awesome as when I first saw it, while Part 2 is a bit anti-climatic to me.

Last edited by TheSubCommander; May 30 2013 at 05:42 AM.
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Old May 30 2013, 05:40 AM   #5
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

@billcosby: Good points. Yes, I definitely think TBOBW should have been written as one story from the get go. They shouldn't have set up such a huge cliffhanger if they didn't know how to properly conclude it. Where could they go from there? Kill Picard? While it would have made for a stronger story, IMO, it would have ruined the show in the long term. TNG couldn't have continued without the presence of Picard. So, the only solution is a cop out........and yes, Family is fantastic! One of my all time favorites.

@TheSubCommander: All good points. I guess all I can say is that I wish the circumstances had been different. Maybe they were spent by that point and couldn't afford it?? Glad you and your buddies loved it the first time around. I enjoyed my first watch through as well, just wish it was more enjoyable for me the second time around.
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Old May 30 2013, 05:46 AM   #6
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

@TheSubCommander: All good points. I guess all I can say is that I wish the circumstances had been different. Maybe they were spent by that point and couldn't afford it?? Glad you and your buddies loved it the first time around. I enjoyed my first watch through as well, just wish it was more enjoyable for me the second time around.
It's possible, like said earlier, that the writers simply wrote themselves into a corner, and made the Borg too powerful. It was very "War of the Worlds"....in that an almost invincible enemy is brought to its knees with a simple solution. For the Martians, it was germs, for the Borg, it was the very means they attempted to defeat the Federation, their link to Picard, that defeated them.
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Old May 30 2013, 06:03 AM   #7
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

I've seen BOTW more times than I can count, and I still rank it among the best installments of Star Trek. I do agree that the second half is not as good as the first half, but one had to be better than the other.

It helps to try and look at it with fresh eyes. Push your foreknowledge to the back of your head and just watch it like it's the first time.
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Old May 30 2013, 06:17 AM   #8
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

To be clear, TBOBW, parts 1 and 2 are still 2 of my most favorite TNG episodes.
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Old May 30 2013, 07:38 AM   #9
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

I'd like to take a moment to shamelessly self promote my novelization of the Best of Both Worlds, available as a free PDF file from the link in my signature...
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Old May 30 2013, 09:21 AM   #10
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

billcosby wrote: View Post
I also want to add that re-watching TBOBW should also include "Family" as the third part. Although no where near the amount of action/excitement than the two previous, it's good because it humanizes Picard totally after such an emotional ordeal.
Could not agree with you more. I've been banging on about the BOBW "trilogy" for years.
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Old May 30 2013, 10:51 AM   #11
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

MikeS wrote: View Post
billcosby wrote: View Post
I also want to add that re-watching TBOBW should also include "Family" as the third part. Although no where near the amount of action/excitement than the two previous, it's good because it humanizes Picard totally after such an emotional ordeal.
Could not agree with you more. I've been banging on about the BOBW "trilogy" for years.
More like a "Hexalogy"

TNG "Q Who"
TNG "BOBW 1-2"
TNG " Family"
TNG "First Contact Film"
ENT "Regeneration"
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Old May 30 2013, 11:07 AM   #12
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

Just as good.
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Old May 30 2013, 11:09 AM   #13
I am not Spock
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

AllStarEntprise wrote: View Post
MikeS wrote: View Post
billcosby wrote: View Post
I also want to add that re-watching TBOBW should also include "Family" as the third part. Although no where near the amount of action/excitement than the two previous, it's good because it humanizes Picard totally after such an emotional ordeal.
Could not agree with you more. I've been banging on about the BOBW "trilogy" for years.
More like a "Hexalogy"

TNG "Q Who"
TNG "BOBW 1-2"
TNG " Family"
TNG "First Contact Film"
ENT "Regeneration"
Regeneration does follow on from the end of First Contact. But it isn't directly Picard's story.

I'd say the sequence is:

Q Who
BOBW
Family
I, Borg
Descent
First Contact

These form a character arc for Picard, and Data as well, actually
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Old May 30 2013, 01:59 PM   #14
Tiberius
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

I am not Spock wrote: View Post
AllStarEntprise wrote: View Post
MikeS wrote: View Post

Could not agree with you more. I've been banging on about the BOBW "trilogy" for years.
More like a "Hexalogy"

TNG "Q Who"
TNG "BOBW 1-2"
TNG " Family"
TNG "First Contact Film"
ENT "Regeneration"
Regeneration does follow on from the end of First Contact. But it isn't directly Picard's story.

I'd say the sequence is:

Q Who
BOBW
Family
I, Borg
Descent
First Contact

These form a character arc for Picard, and Data as well, actually
I wouldn't include Descent.

It's Data's story, not Picard's, and Picard doesn't have to face anything about what the Borg put him through, even though we know he hates the Borg for it and will hate them again in FC (so we know he didn't get over it with Hugh), and honestly, those Borg in Descent could have been anything - Rabid Klingons, disobediant Bolians - and the story would have remained the same.

The ones I would include are the ones that lead up to BOBW - Regeneration, Q Who, BOBW and Family, then FC.
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Old May 30 2013, 05:01 PM   #15
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Re: Is TBOBW As Good As You Remembered?

AllStarEntprise wrote: View Post
This morning I watched both VOY Scorpion and TNG First Contact. Scorpion was ok, not a great as my first viewing. It's certainly elevated by the presence and urgency of the threat Species 8472 added. Although the neutering of that awesome race occurred shortly after this episode. Scorpion I find is above average VOY on par with Equinox.
I'm no fan of VOY, but I recently rewatched the Scorpion two-parter and thought it was actually still really damn good myself. Between the new villains, great music, character conflict, and introduction of Seven, I'd honestly put it right up there with BOBW.

As for BOBW, I think it still works great for the most part, although granted even the average DS9 two-parter tended to feel a lot more epic and complex. But that's just down to the much simpler storytelling style of TNG.
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