Brannon Braga on DS9

Discussion in 'Deep Space Nine' started by FrontierTrek, Mar 19, 2013.

  1. FrontierTrek

    FrontierTrek Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Hey folks, I interviewed Brannon Braga for TrekCore and asked him to comment on Deep Space Nine. We discuss DS9 towards the end of the first part of the interview, or from about 9:00 on the video.

    Brannon commented how he thought DS9 benefited from "being third" and that they had to do something like serialized storytelling to set themselves apart.

    He mentioned the episode "The Visitor" is considered a classic but for some reason doesn't get spoken of in the same breath as TNG's classics.

    Enjoy!

    Link: http://trekcore.com/blog/2013/03/exclusive-brannon-braga-interview-part-i/
     
  2. DeepSpaceWine

    DeepSpaceWine Commander Red Shirt

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    Heh. DS9 wasn't "third" in the ratings...

    (I enjoy both DS9 & Voyager. Who says anyone has to like only one of them?)
     
  3. Lance

    Lance Commodore Commodore

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    What I want to know from Braga is: was Sisko ever supposed to be Future Guy? ;)
     
  4. Danger Ace

    Danger Ace Commander Red Shirt

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    My honest opinion: Brannon Braga [along with Rick Berman] ran the Star trek franchise into the ground through laziness, lack of vision and disdain for the franchises' fandom. I wouldn't take his "word" on anything and his opinions are without value. He is simply a scumbag who knows how to play the system.
     
  5. DalekJim

    DalekJim Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    He was an unambitious, formulaic writer but scumbag seems kinda over the top.
     
  6. DS9forever

    DS9forever Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I remember Braga saying he thought DS9's "Babel" was one of the worst TV episodes he had ever seen. I guess he doomed himself with that comment. "Babel" wasn't a good episode but it was only the fifth DS9 episode filmed, Braga later wrote such stinkers as "Sub Rosa", "Phantasms" and "Threshold".
     
  7. GameOn

    GameOn Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    This is pretty much how I feel. I actually liked some of Braga's earlier TNG episodes but back then we was working under other people who could rein him in or pair him with another writer. Voyager's main redeeming quality was that it kept Berman and Braga occupied while the people who knew what they were doing made DS9.
     
  8. Blip

    Blip Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    ^ which in itself is a shame, as Voyager IMHO had real potential to become something special... Sometimes I think I'd like to have seen VOY if it'd had DS9's team running the show, instead of Jeri Taylor and the Dreaded B&B.
     
  9. SchwEnt

    SchwEnt Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I saw the interview. It's worth watching.

    You can believe what he says or not. But I agree with some of his statements... they should have held off on VOY, let DS9 run on its own. I guess the suits wanted VOY so they could launch UPN.

    And some of the other stuff, having ENT wait for a season on Earth leading up to the starship launch.

    Those ideas would have helped, but TPTB have the money and call the shots, I suppose.

    I still think, for all its problems, VOY would have been better off if they tried to do something different.

    DS9 changed up just about every single thing in a ST series that had come before. VOY could have similarly been different with their stated premise, but instead opted for a more familiar TNG Jr., with eps that could have easily been in that series rather than unique to VOY. That could still lead to good eps, but eh.
     
  10. DS9forever

    DS9forever Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I was reading a post somewhere on the Enterprise board which mentioned that a clueless Paramount suit wanted to have bands playing in the NX-01's mess hall. To me, that illustrates a lack of studio knowledge and respect for the franchise that Berman and Braga were up against.
     
  11. GameOn

    GameOn Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    A "Year of Hell" style serialised series with well defined and interesting characters, Battlestar Voyager basically.
     
  12. HaventGotALife

    HaventGotALife Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Don't forget "Shuttlepod One." Talk about a story that goes nowhere.
     
  13. Anwar

    Anwar Vice Admiral Admiral

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    You do realize that Braga didn't become a showrunner until Season 5, and wasn't anymore by Season 7? He wasn't Producing all that much in VOY.

    And he DID want a full Year of Hell.

    Honestly people, stop blaming them for things that weren't their fault.

    EDIT: Also, way to overlook stuff like "Living Witness" or "Frame of Mind" and only remember stuff like "Sub Rosa" or "Threshold".
     
  14. The Mirrorball Man

    The Mirrorball Man Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It's a character piece. What's wrong with it?
     
  15. LobsterAfternoon

    LobsterAfternoon Commander Red Shirt

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    I do think people are a bit too harsh on Braga. He cowrote All Good Things, that alone should buy him some good will. Did he overstay his welcome? Probably. But given the meddling that the network suits put into Voyager and ENT, it's hard to say if any writer could've spun those into gold.
     
  16. Blip

    Blip Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    You do realise I never singled out Braga?? In fact Jeri Taylor was quite clearly at the beginning of my list. Get off your soapbox.

    I did no such thing. Don't ascribe other peoples' comments to my posts, thank you very much.
     
  17. Danger Ace

    Danger Ace Commander Red Shirt

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    Braga, like the devil, is a being you don't want to look in the eyes nor listen to his words of deception for fear of being warped and led astray. Berman & Braga know what to say and how to say it. One thing their tenure on Trek taught them was how to shmooze like politicians.

    Sure Braga was just an employee. Ultimately, he had to do what his bosses said, however, how he did it was up to him.

    The folks on DS9 worked hard to put out a drama that pushed the envelope and challanged preconceptions. Somtimes they succeeded, sometimes they didn't. And even with that pushing and challanging they had to respect and adhere to some of Paramounts rules. They had to pick and choose their fights, as well as, pay various prices. The folks at DS9 are respected because they dared to strive for greatness within the strictures laid down by TPTB.

    Braga was never so brave or bold. He was a cookie-cutter, paint-by-numbers hack who seemed to view himself as being above the material. He took the job-title and cashed the checks, he can't now throw up his hands and disavow or deflect responsibility for that which he served as producer or executive-producer/showrunner.

    The other that gets me about Braga is when he throws out there how many hours of Star Trek programing he was responsible for. Newsflash: quality trumps quantity everytime. Pumping out 300 hours (or whatever the # be) of generally mediocre-at-best Star Trek is not something to brag about (especially, when the graph of audience viewership and satisfaction shows constant decline over the period of your tenure/stewardship).

    So to boil it all down: Braga is a putz - In my opinion. In fact this who post is just my opinion and should not be regarded as anything more than that.
     
  18. Danger Ace

    Danger Ace Commander Red Shirt

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    And it did. Braga enjoyed a huge resovoir of goodwill. Problem is he placed little value on it and thought nothing of drying it up through inferior works.

    I don't buy the "network meddling" bit - never have. It's played like a CYA trump card. No doubt networks meddle - they always have. Remember most every TV series you've ever loved has had to deal with those same forces. Claims of "network meddling" usually boil down to someone whining how they are responsible for all things people love about a show while the network is responsible for all that is bad or didn't work.
     
  19. M.A.C.O.

    M.A.C.O. Commodore Commodore

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    Didn't Braga and Moore only cowrite the second part of AGT? I'm pretty sure part one was done by different writers. Braga and Moore were writing Generations at the time of AGT.
     
  20. LobsterAfternoon

    LobsterAfternoon Commander Red Shirt

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    I think network meddling can be a cover your ass move, but it can also be true. I don't think any of us know enough to say which is the case with Braga. My main passion is comic books and I can say with a high degree of confidence that corporate meddling is crippling a lot of the creative types at DC Comics right now.

    Given that Braga had a decent track record at TNG (Cause & Effect, Parallels, AGT), I'm willing to consider the possibility that meddling from execs at least played a role in lower quality stuff that he wrote. Does he still have some responsibility? Of course. But the Trek model looks frigging insane by today's standards (22-24 hour longs, every year, for 7 years) and a guy that has a decent number of good scripts to his name shouldn't have his butthole torn open constantly.