“In Conversation” or “Berman and Braga vs the world.”

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Enterprise' started by Scotty, May 2, 2013.

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  1. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    People who get to claim writer's privilege are people who push boundaries and have original ideas. Not Rick Berman and Brannon Braga.

    Yes, seasons 3 and 4 are probably the best non-TOS-TNG-DS9 Trek out there. But how can you give Berman and Braga credit for that, when the quality of the show skyrocketed right when a new fresh writer came in, and not blame them for the dreck of the first two seasons?
     
  2. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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    "Culpability?"

    Dude, they made a TV show you didn't like. It's not like they killed Princess Diana or something.
     
  3. Scotty

    Scotty Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Sure people were critical, but they kept watching and were rewarded for their patience.

    The Catwalk? Seriously? The episodes you name are just episodes that weren't as mindnumbingly dull as the rest of Enterprise's episodes. There are no episodes in Enterprise's entire run that can match the sheer brilliance of early season episodes like "Measure of a Man", "Q Who", "Duet", "The Jem'Hadar" or even"Jetrel" or "Tuvix".

    It's clear you're a huge fan of the show Noname, and in a way I envy you. But seriously, Enterprise never even came close to the brilliance of seasons 3 and 4 of TNG or DS9's seasons 5 and 6. Enterprise's Xindi arc was breath of fresh air and at the time I really loved that season. But in hindsight, the premise was a very weird choice for a prequel series and the writers actually abandoned the initial premise of the show for an entire season. It feels very out of place. Season 4 was hardcore Trek in the sense that every episodes references established cannon or tried to expand upon it. It was the first time Enterprise had a point to make. But still, the stories themselves weren't exciting enough. The pacing was also very slow because of the unnecessary spreading out of a story over 2 or 3 episodes.

    I'll tell you why I think Enterprise never worked and it's evident from the interviews on the Blu Rays. Berman and Braga were never enthusiastic about the show. Berman is just a studio exec who was put on a job in the 80s and continued to do that job for 18 years. He had no affinity with Trek or its fans. It was just a tv show for him, a job. Berman talks about how "the network approached them to do another show" and that "the feeling was we should do something different" and how " it would be a good idea that it was set in an earlier time". Never do you hear: "we got this great idea for a show and we pitched it to the network" or "we loved the idea of setting it in a time before Kirk so we could show (the fans) what the early days of Starfleet and the Federation looked like". Instead we get some casual remarks about people wearing baseball caps and jeans and eating in Chinatown. A good trek writer should have some kind of enthusiasm or even reverence for the source material or the established cannon. I think during season 4 the writers room did have that. But not during seasons 1 - 3. If the writers and producers aren't excited about the show they are producing, then fans like me won't be either.
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2013
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  4. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    Like wanting to set the first season on Earth?
     
  5. gblews

    gblews Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    You know, I'm certainly no apologist for the Beebs, lord knows I'v done my share of bashing, but please tell me what is not original and not boundary pushing about starting a Trek series on Earth? This would have been revolutionary for a Trek series and honestly, I have wanted for years to see what this would have looked like. It may have turned out terribly, it's Rick and Brannon circa 2001 afterall, but it would surely have been original.

    If I misunderstood your post, let me know.
     
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  6. Scotty

    Scotty Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It would've depended on what kind of stories they wanted to tell on Earth. But neither Berman or Braga gave any examples of what the show would look like in that setting. But let's be clear. B&B only wanted to set the first half of season 1 on Earth, so presumably the rest of the season would've looked pretty much the same as the first half of season one eventually did. In the end, the show would return to the familiar alien of the week, episodic premise.
     
  7. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    I totally agree. It might have not worked out but it would definitely had been something new. That's why I don't understand the claim that Berman did not want to push the boundaries, it were rather the executives who wanted to play it safe.


    No, it would have looked more like Season 4, exploring Earth's neighbourhood before the NX-01 heads into deep space.
     
  8. bullethead

    bullethead Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    From what I remember hearing on that Geek roundtable that TrekMovie linked to a while back, Braga's idea was to have S1 start with a Klingon attack and end with the launch of Enterprise. The rest would've been political stuff (which Braga said was why Broken Bow was one of his favorites in S1) and character intro/building (I guess). It's impossible to tell what it would've been like, since it got killed so early in the process in favor of more "planet/alien of the week" stuff that Braga hated (based on his comments in the interview).
     
  9. Scotty

    Scotty Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    A baseless assumption. This is just wishful thinking on your part. Nowhere do Berman or Braga state this as their intent. Furthermore, the writers responsible for season 4 weren't part of the creative staff yet.
     
  10. Scotty

    Scotty Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Oh goody! Political stuff! You mean Vulcans and humans were going to spend an entire season making snide remarks about another. Innovative! ;)

    In all honesty, that wouldn't have appealed to this Trek fan at all. Maybe if Ron Moore, Ira Behr or even Manny Coto had been showrunner, I'd be curious. But worldbuilding or character development were never Braga's strong suit.
     
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  11. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    Bullshit, exploring Earth's neighbourhood is the natural step between being on Earth and deep space.
    Get a grip and accept the fact that it was the studio and not Berman who buried all innovative idea.
     
  12. R. Star

    R. Star Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Seriously... do you have to talk down to -everyone- who doesn't share your opinion?
     
  13. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    I am the talking down because I have the audacity to not use a euphemism for bullshit after have been accused of wishful thinking for saying that step B comes between step A and C? Seriously?
     
  14. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

    While you may be right, it would've been a totally different writing staff handling the stories. So the likely result would've looked much, much different than season four.
     
  15. Takeru

    Takeru Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    The show's suckiness was still Berman's and Braga's fault, they were the showrunners. If the studio and network don't like a certain idea it's the showrunners' job to make the approved version work.

    The studio didn't bury all innovative ideas, it buried an innovative idea (but innovative doesn't equal good, so it could have been the best decision ever made, we have no idea how it would have turned out). They wanted planets of the week and that's not a problem in itself, they never said "Don't be innovative", if you can't have your innovative season arc, do innovative standalone episodes instead.
     
  16. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    I agree, it would have still felt too much like a 24th century show. Not that the 23rd century stuff from the last season was per se better, I think it was only better because they often gave it a new spin.
    Furthermore a story like Demons / Terra Prime which dealt with Earth problems, the kind of story which should have come first, is of course not imaginable without the Reeves-Stevenses.

    So yeah, I totally agree that this wouldn't have been a total game-changer. I like Berman and Braga but it is undeniable that they worked too long for Trek such their story-telling patterns became too familiar to the audience. Take an non-genuine 22nd century story like Vox Sola, it felt like a left-over script from VOY. They had ideas like making Journey to Babel the benchmark for the relations between the future four founding members of the Federation and most of the stories which dealt with Vulcans or Andorians were good ... but there weren't enough of these genuine 22nd century stories.
     
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  17. Scotty

    Scotty Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    That is the point I was trying to make as well. So it seems we are in agreement, whether you like it or not. ;)
     
  18. xortex

    xortex Commodore

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    Berman being all for squashing innovation would make perfect sense as he wanted the small flicker of a flame to last as long as possible so I even think he was forced to make it a prequel even to at least make it somewhat different and distinct otherwise he might not have even been in favor of that as sausages were sausages to him.
     
  19. Danger Ace

    Danger Ace Commander Red Shirt

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    Yes, damage. Enterprise was in no small way responsible for Trek going comatose - that's damage!

    Fine by me. :techman:

    That is exactly what I and the majority of Trek fans did - we stopped watching en mass. To the point where it was the first Trek series in 35-40 years to be cancelled. Again, damage. It's failure tainted and scared the brand.

    By objective measures and standards Berman and Braga failed. For that failure they should apologize.

    Also, they were not motivated by the ideals of creating art, but rather to produce a "product" and extend a brand. As a consumer of that product, and devotee of that brand, I am very much within my rights to voice my displeasure when I feel it fails to meet my standards for quality and excellence as well as to call upon those responsible for a perceived loss of quality to apologize for their failure (and Enterprise by the standard to which it was born and held to was an unmitigated failure).
     
  20. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    Not that one should take anybody seriously who uses the word objective while talking about art/entertainment in the first place. ... but ENT got canceled when it became good and while Coto was in control. So much about blaming Berman and Braga and how cancellation reveals anything objectively about the quality of a TV show. Hell, I guess Firefly has to be a shitty show because it got canceled. I ain't gonna watch that.

    Your last paragraph sounds like an involuntary piece of self-satire. If Trek is just the equivalent of a piece of toilet paper for you I suggest that you call Paramount hotline and place your consumer complaint and your demand for an apology there.
     
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