Disappointment with S7

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by Thomas Elliot, Mar 18, 2020.

  1. Thomas Elliot

    Thomas Elliot Commander Red Shirt

    Nov 21, 2016
    I know that people have said that TNG was running out of steam with the final season. Rewatching S7, I feel that way too.

    The Good
    Thine Own Self
    Lower Decks
    First Born
    Preemptive Strike
    The Pegasus
    All Good Things...

    I enjoy those episodes but even then some of them aren't even great, like Genesis which is kind of hokey.

    "Force of Nature"? Such a boring episode, no budget to depict the rescue, and they have to curb warp emissions? Ridiculous.
    It seemed like that sense of awe was gone for many of the episodes and it felt like everyone got too comfortable. Was the writing on the wall that it was ending and they'd transition to the movies why there were more lackluster stories being told?
    I'm watching "Schisms" from S6. TNG was just hopping on the alien abduction trend at the time but it was a creepy episode that had a good mystery going on and that light emanating from another dimension or from subspace hinted at something otherworldly weird.

    I'm surprised that they didn't take things further with S7 and tell some really crazy SF-type of stories, and push the boundaries of imagination.
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  2. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Admiral Admiral

    Nov 20, 2012
    I mostly agree with you list but also love Gambit and would exclude Firstborn.

    Their hands were tied. They did not have the freedom to tell really different storylines. They were clearly running low on creative juices in the last season.
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  3. Roboturner913

    Roboturner913 Commander Red Shirt

    Jan 8, 2011
    There are some bad ones. You didn't even mention Sub Rosa, which has to be in the top 5 all-time worst episodes of Star Trek.

    But there's way more good ones than I had remembered. Eye of the Beholder, Lower Decks, Genesis, Emergence, Masks, Phantasms are all pretty creative/original ideas, if at moments not as well executed as they could've been.

    What I didn't like is cramming all the "family" episodes in there. Geordi's long-lost mother, Troi's long-lost sister, Data's long-lost mother, Worf's long-lost brother, Picard's long-lost "son." That all would've been fine if they'd spread it out over the course of a few seasons but all squeezed together in one season it became very noticeable as a writing weakness.
  4. Orphalesion

    Orphalesion Commodore Commodore

    Oct 19, 2014
    I know, right? It's like one new long-lost Surprise Family Member after the other. I usually like it when we learn about the private lives of a character, but season 7 was way too occupied with the crew's family members.
    Why so many? And why in the last season?
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  5. Farscape One

    Farscape One Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Mar 2, 2017
    With the exception of Riker, ALL of them dealt with some family member, whether real or not. And with Riker, only because we saw his dad years ago and they did a Riker duplicate at the end of season 6.

    It was very glaring at the time when I watched... the trailers even pointed it out.

    "Data's long lost mother."

    "Geordi tries to rescue his mom."

    "'I'm going to kill your son, Picard'."

    Even Nurse Ogawa was pregnant with a baby on the way! I was half expecting to see a confident, suave brother of Barclay at some point.
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  6. Nakita Akita

    Nakita Akita Commodore Commodore

    Feb 8, 2017
    Don't forget Bevetly's long lost grandmother
    And, the cherry on top,
    Grandma's long lost lover. :barf:
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  7. Thomas Elliot

    Thomas Elliot Commander Red Shirt

    Nov 21, 2016
    When Sub Rosa was first announced back in the day via commercial, despite having the habit of watching TNG every Saturday at 7 PM, I still skipped out on that one.
    Picard's long lost son episode felt wrong when I first watched it and what a surprise...it wasn't really his son.
    Data having a mother...IDK what to think about that. I don't think he needed a whole entire family. Dr. Soong was his father. He has a brother. He made himself a daughter. Now a mom? Maybe some cousins and an uncle while we're at it.
    Just watching that season it feels like the end is near.

    Worf's foster brother? Why-doesn't-he-have-a-Russian-accent?? Yes, I get that Picard's a French man that speaks like a Brit. But it sticks out when you have special guest star Paul Sorvino aka Pauly from Goodfellas acting as Worf's Russian brother. As a kid it felt like the writers were making it up as they went a long. To be fair, his brother was mentioned way back in S1 or S2, but we never heard from him again. I got the impression that Worf was their only son the way his adopted parents acted. Did Worf even ask them in the interm, "how is my brother doing?"

    Warm fuel emissions and Native American land-rights felt too on-the-nose for TNG episodes.

    "Lower Decks" was probably the best one. Ensign Ro's exit was also very well done. "Thine Own Self" was a beautiful quiet little episode.

    "First Born" I thought was good, mostly because of how it referenced previous episodes and maintained continuity. When adult Alexander says, "You howled...and told me 'look upon death and never forget." But it tied up too easily, even for Star Trek.
    Where did adult Alexander go after this? Just chill in his past? And isn't time travel being too easy to accomplish at this point? If Alexander can go back in time by just chatting with some random dude, why aren't more people going back into time and causing significant damage to the timeline? Time travel should be treated like a bigger deal.

    Despite the highs of episodes like "Lower Decks" and the finale, I think S1 and S2 feel a lot more ambitious and adventurous.
  8. Seven of Five

    Seven of Five Watch out HYDRA - here we come! Premium Member

    May 1, 2001
    They really were running out of gas. You also have to think everyone's attention was diverted at various points during the season. They knew they were winding down, and that they would launch the TNG films, and of course they were getting ready to launch VOY, whilst also having DS9 up and running.

    Now I know all three were Independent productions, but the likes of Berman, Piller and Taylor would have a lot on their plate, note to mention Braga and Moore who were writing Generations, as well as performing the duties on the S7 writing staff, and of course eventually writing All Good Thing together as well.

    Sometimes I like to imagine scenarios when VOY didn't launch for a while, or the first TNG film isn't a few months after the end of the series, to try and think of if the writers could cope better.
  9. MrPicard

    MrPicard Jean-Luc's Loving Husband Premium Member

    Dec 29, 2019
    Jean-Luc's Bed
    Season 7 is my least favorite TNG season. It does have a few episodes that I enjoy a lot, but getting through it is always incredibly tedious for me. All those boring family episodes REALLY don't help either.
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  10. Visitor1982

    Visitor1982 Captain Captain

    Jun 20, 2004
    The Netherlands
    Season 7 is a really mixed bag, with many bad and mediocre episodes and a few good ones. It isn't as bad as season 1, but it's close if you'd ask me.
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  11. TimeIsAPredator

    TimeIsAPredator Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Mar 15, 2020
    Felt like a bit of an anti climax to go out with a season of self contained episodes rather than a bit of an arc. I know it was TNGs thing but still. At least All Good Things gave us a good tied in ending
  12. Thomas Elliot

    Thomas Elliot Commander Red Shirt

    Nov 21, 2016
    I guess the Maquis and the Cardassians could have played a bigger part in a larger story arc but DS9 had already started.
    I enjoyed the template of self contained episodes, but I think that TNG has evolved to being more of a continuing drama with events that carry out significant changes for the long run. Or at least it hinted at that. Troi actually worked to move up the ranks and became a commander. She also started wearing a uniform. Her and Worf seemed to be starting a relationship. Picard’s experiences in episodes carried over into other ones, like his life as a Ressican and how he continued to play the flute and how he later opened up about this to the star cartographer.
    It seemed it could have been more continuity driven, in the direction current binge-drama shows are done, just not to that extreme.
    What could have been...
  13. TimeIsAPredator

    TimeIsAPredator Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Mar 15, 2020
    After 6 seasons they finally gave Troi grown up clothes.

    What a character arc:lol:
  14. Thomas Elliot

    Thomas Elliot Commander Red Shirt

    Nov 21, 2016
    So the clothes she was wearing up to that point weren’t for grown ups??
  15. JesterFace

    JesterFace Commodore Commodore

    Jun 1, 2014
    Suomi Finland
    For reasons I don't know season 7 does feel weaker than the 4 seasons before it.
    Maybe it was a good time to finish the series? Especially because we got an amazing final episode.

    On the other hand, had there been season 8, who knows how that might've turned out? Amazing?
    We did get the movies but I think they suc.... well, weren't that good to say it nicely.
    But, I would take season 8 rather than the movies if given the choice.
    But, 'All Good Things...' is so amazing and wraps up the entire series so nicely I wouldn't risk losing it over few good episodes on hypothetical season 8.
  16. Thomas Elliot

    Thomas Elliot Commander Red Shirt

    Nov 21, 2016
    I think had all their resources been focused on TNG, and no movies or multiple spin-offs, we very well could have gotten a better S7, S8 and beyond. It’s science fiction so there’s not much limitation compared to a sitcom like Friends, or even a regular drama completely grounded in reality.
  17. Orphalesion

    Orphalesion Commodore Commodore

    Oct 19, 2014
    The Skant uniform in the pilot kidna looked like a little girl's dress.

    But aside from that, yeah her clothes defenitely looked like an adult woman's clothes in the 24th century.

    Also guys, nope. She chained into the uniform during Season 6, not 7.
  18. JesterFace

    JesterFace Commodore Commodore

    Jun 1, 2014
    Suomi Finland
    We can thank / blame Jellico for that, right? Or the writer(s) of 'Chain of Command'.
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  19. Mojochi

    Mojochi Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Aug 18, 2007
    No love for Liasons? I really like that one. Attached isn't bad either. Probably the least I've ever minded Beverly in an episode. Phantasms is weird, but it works imho... and Emergence isn't as terrible as people would lead you to believe.

    I'd also agree with @JirinPanthosa that while Gambit isn't one of my favorite 2 parters, it was certainly a competent episode, especially exploring the secondary command officer command dynamics. As far as I'm concerned, Data & Worf elevate a run-of-the-mill episode into being a great viewing experience.

    I'm fine with the finale too, & while Homeward has an objectionable premise, some of the performances in it are wonderful, but yes, I would agree... too many surprise family member things going on in close succession,

    It's surely one of the weakest seasons, but honestly, on the list of episodes I consider truly bad are only Masks, & Sub Rosa, & maybe Eye of The Beholder
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  20. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    May 18, 2017
    The clinic located by the Q Continuum

    After seasons 5 and 6, I found season 7 to be a refreshing return to exploration of strange new situations. Phantasms, Masks, Genesis, Thine Own Self, Liaisons, et al, were definitely more than the "soapbox of the week" issue and for the most part were enjoyable.

    But we still got some of those like in "Force of Nature". :barf:

    The show did try universe expansion with "Gambit". At the time I was lukewarm to it.

    Homeward, Pegasus, and others toyed with the Prime Directive and other rules and treaties.

    A return to Twilight Zone inspired drama was also attempted with the one where Troi is meandering in the nacelle with bad forced perspective camera angles... but, like Schisms, "Eye of the Beholder" didn't work.

    But other other-perspective episodes like "Lower Decks" worked marvelously.

    As was said, TNG7 is loaded with more family affairs... that's not my thing but some yummed it up. Even the extremely exciting one about the caber toss... but I could never do the review of that story justice, unlike this channel:
    Hehe, that tickles!

    That just never gets old and I honestly can't figure out why...

    And, of course, "All Good Things..." - which made for one heck of a bookend.

    TNG was right in not doing an 8th season and ended on a high note. DS9 was already taking off and deserved the focus.
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