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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek TV Series > The Next Generation

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

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Old October 26 2013, 10:28 AM   #1
Arpy
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Understated Humor

One of the things I liked about TNG is the subtlety with which they could handle humor. "Second Chances" is on BBC America right now, and I just found myself getting all warm and fuzzy and missing the show after a funny moment. Riker, Tom Riker, Worf and Data are playing poker. They're going around betting and drawing cards after the initial deal. Data takes two, Riker decides to play the ones he has...Worf...takes 4. A beat. They finish drawing, and it's another Round of bets. Tom Riker bets a modest 50 and BAM(!) Worf drops his cards, "Fold" he says quickly, and Data and Tom look at him for a beat. Both moments are brief and understated in an uncomfortable scene about the competitive relationship between the Rikers...and both just made me grin ear to ear. I miss this show. :/
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Old October 26 2013, 08:52 PM   #2
SpocksLeftEar
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Re: Understated Humor

Hi,
I share your opinion. Sad thing though is that they went for "overstated" humour in the movies, such as the awful joystick scene in Insurrection. They could have done without this stuff.
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Old October 26 2013, 10:08 PM   #3
R. Star
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Re: Understated Humor

I liked how on Lower decks during the junior officer poker game the waiter who calls Lavelle's bluff was showing random cards that formed nothing no matter what his hole card was... and Lavelle still folded. He's really bad at poker.
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Old October 26 2013, 10:11 PM   #4
Trekker4747
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Re: Understated Humor

In "Data's Day" when Data is visiting Geordi in the ship's salon. He's standing there and sort of turns his head over his shoulder and gives a "WTF?!" sort of slow "take" to an alien woman's hair-do in the booth behind him.

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Old October 27 2013, 01:13 AM   #5
Mojochi
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Re: Understated Humor

Spiner can make comedy out of reading a phone book. That his bag, man, & why the character is so endearing. The cold open to Schisms with the Ode To Spot & all the reactions from everyone & Riker snoozing & Troi nudging. Priceless. The time traveler in A Matter of Time asking everyone to fill out questionnaires & Geordi saying "If I hand in my questionnaire on time, can I get a glimpse into next week's poker game?". Spot on humor.

Even when it wasn't subtle, they still played it really well, Q-Pid comes to mind

Last edited by Mutai Sho-Rin; October 27 2013 at 11:46 PM. Reason: Complete spelling of Spiner
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Old October 30 2013, 01:15 AM   #6
TheGoodStuff
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Re: Understated Humor

TNG was laced with good humour, that was never really the point, but was always there in the background. It added a realism to the show for me. In fact, I think it helped bridge the gap between TNG's perfect humans and us, the viewer. They could still crack a joke. I think DS9 and VOY followed suit on this too.

As for TNG, so many scenes I find very funny and frequently quite warm. The entire cast can be amusing, yet they all vary in delivery from blatant wit to dry sarcasm.

One of my favourites is from Picard....

"Im sorry if I interrupted another waltz..."

I laugh every time.

Also, I love the 'end-of-episode-laugh-on-the-bridge' thing that happened so often.

Damn TNG is so watchable.
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Old October 30 2013, 04:05 AM   #7
Mojochi
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Re: Understated Humor

Picard: Yes, I've heard, Data. And I would be delighted to offer any advice I can on understanding women. When I have some, I'll let you know.
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Old October 30 2013, 10:41 AM   #8
Tosk
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Re: Understated Humor

Arpy wrote: View Post
One of the things I liked about TNG is the subtlety with which they could handle humor. "Second Chances" is on BBC America right now
There's another great subtle comedy sting in that episode, where Worf and Data are discussing Will and Tom. Worf asmits that he is not easy to get along with, and Data just agrees with him (which is funny enough on its own) and Worf instantly shoots him a look. He just glares at him for a moment before deciding to move on.
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Old October 30 2013, 05:55 PM   #9
JirinPanthosa
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Re: Understated Humor

Q: Who does he think he is?
Data: Commander Laforge believes he is in command. (Subtle head twitch) And he is correct.
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Old October 30 2013, 09:18 PM   #10
Melakon
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Re: Understated Humor

I think one of the best winks at the audience comes in "Ship in a Bottle".

Picard: In a sense, who knows? Our reality may be very much like theirs. All this might just be an elaborate simulation running inside a little device sitting on someone's table.
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Old October 30 2013, 09:53 PM   #11
JirinPanthosa
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Re: Understated Humor

SCOTTY: What is it?
DATA: It is...
(Smells)
DATA: It is...
DATA: It is green.
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Old October 30 2013, 10:07 PM   #12
trekker670
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Re: Understated Humor

Melakon wrote: View Post
I think one of the best winks at the audience comes in "Ship in a Bottle".

Picard: In a sense, who knows? Our reality may be very much like theirs. All this might just be an elaborate simulation running inside a little device sitting on someone's table.
I don't think that was meant to be humor, as it's a very real theory

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simulated_reality

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Old October 30 2013, 10:36 PM   #13
Melakon
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Re: Understated Humor

^ Watch the scene again. Stewart's delivery, and the reactions, are definitely played as humor. The concept of course dates back to even earlier science fiction stories. Can't remember the story or author, but in a short story some guy is convinced someone is watching him. He looks outside the window and sees the sun shining. As he turns back toward the room, he hears someone say "Okay, he's gone. You can take it away now."
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Old October 30 2013, 11:06 PM   #14
Dale Sams
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Re: Understated Humor

Worf: "Delicious"
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