Never Gave ENT a Chance. Just Now Watching It For The First Time.

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Enterprise' started by johnjm22, Aug 13, 2014.

  1. johnjm22

    johnjm22 Captain Captain

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    Enterprise looked unappealing to me when it debuted in 2001. The whole franchise felt a bit out of gas at that point. Recently I've been starving for some new Trek, so I figured it was time to give this show its due.


    I'm halfway though season two, thoughts...

    The theme song is TERRIBLE, and while I like the outer design of the ship, the cheapo fake looking CJI kills it. A real turnoff right off the bat.

    The series opener, aside from the portrayal of Vulcans, is promising. Unfortunately, that promise quickly fades as the show falls into formulaic monster of the week mode. There's very little story arc so far.

    While there's decent episodes here and there, it all feels like things that I've seen before. I have nothing against Berman or Braga, but it seems to me that at this point Trek needed new blood behind the scenes to freshen things up.

    Another problem is the incredibly bland characters. I like Phlox, and T'Pol is okay, but everyone else is as plain and uninteresting as can be. Travis Mayweather is the obligatory black guy. A pointless happy-do-gooder and a complete blank. Hoshi Sato isn't far behind. Captain Archer is probably the dumbest captain in any version of Trek ever made. His sidekick, country boy Trip Tucker, is a simpleton that's about as likeable as George W. Bush (he don't them dadgum intellectual Vulcans!). Being the only human character on the show with any noticeable characteristics, Trip is a feature player in nearly every episode. There's also some guy named Reed that likes pineapple. I'm probably forgetting someone else.

    Then there's the Vulcans. Smug, emotional, ignorant, petty, conniving bigoted fools these Vulcans are. They're essentially Romulans. I guess the writers needed material, so instead of coming up new original ideas, they just turned the Vulcans into idiots, that gave them a lot of material to work with. Maybe in the next the Trek series they'll turn the Kligons into piece loving hippies.

    I've heard ENT changes drastically in season 3. I sure hope it's for the better.
     
  2. jespah

    jespah Taller than a Hobbit Moderator

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    You will see big changes in S3. Hang in there.
     
  3. ReedEnterprise

    ReedEnterprise Captain Captain

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    I fell in love with ENT much earlier in my viewing than you did. I love the series and Trip is my second favorite character in all of Trek.

    The series gets much better and tells a very good story. Hang on.
     
  4. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral In Memoriam

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    Malcolm "Stinky" Reed is my favorite character on the show, because he's essentially a mystery. We know he's obsessed with always doing the proper thing by the book, and he's never completely at ease around people.
     
  5. TerraNovan

    TerraNovan Lieutenant Commander

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    Yeah it really was a what were they thinking kind of moment. The theme song, just showed how out of touch they were with the mainstream trek audience. They might as well have hired kenny g to write the theme would of been no worst.
    There is a lot of this, I strongly suggest skipping alot of the episodes that seem like rehashing of tos plots. ENT had a lot of crap episodes that went absolutely nowhere. The true sign of writers fatigue. On a bad day the show was bad. This turned me off from the series for years. However I quickly realized some of my favorite trek moments were from ENT. Namely carbon creek.


    This is a fundamental problem of the show, however it has some really good guest stars that somewhat make up for this fact.





    Yeah he really is fun to hate, hes literally george bush on the bridge. I honestly like that hes a direct parallel.




    These are the guys that grow on you over time.



    By the fourth season it starts to make a bit more sense. I honestly prefer this characterization of vulcans to the more robotic kind of the 24th century.

    By the time you start dealing with the andorians you really start to understand vulcans.

    Also I think the romulan part is intentional, as they really are the same species divided by two distinct philosophies.. It helps to explain why they were set for reunification during tng.


    Season three is the worst and the best at the same time. All I can say is dont get too involved in the arc as its a real let down. However there are some really good episodes in there.


    I ironically like ent way more than voy.

    VOY had no bad episodes but almost no good ones either. The only episodes that were enjoyable for me were the vulcan episodes and honestly ENT did those so much better.
     
  6. Salinga

    Salinga Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I wouldnt say its terrible, for me it just would often break the mood of the teaser and seemed out-of-place because of that (especially in the darker episodes). The classical themes of the other shows pretty much fitted every teaser and suggested: "Something epic is about to happen." The ENT theme lacks that, it doesnt have gravitas and only fits to stories of a certain mood.
     
  7. Richard Baker

    Richard Baker Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Most Trek shows start off with a bad first year- TNG was painful to watch with everyone stopping and making speeches trying to establish their character and back story. Enterprise was not as bad as most, the bit where Archer was trying to take a shower and gravity failed and how he handled it endeared me to the character. The stupid Temporal Cold War I think was a mistake- they should have started off with the stories told in s4.

    I hated the theme song- after all the inspiring symphonic themes having the show start with that was just jarring. The CGI for the ship did not bother me too bad- it was built from different materials and without the familiar thermocoat. I understand the need to show a more primitive type of shuttle, but I never cared for their design, the bay or the way they were grabbed and dragged inside. I wish they would have just gone with a smaller hangar deck tucked into the aft section of the saucer instead.

    The characters were more interesting than Voyagers, the interior sets were well done and gave the ship a good primitive vibe even though the technology seemed too advanced in places. It is hard to do a show which is trying to seem a predecessor to a show made in the sixties while staying in 'our' future so I can cut hem some slack on that aspect.

    I think the problem is that they chose to create a show which involved the time period before TOS. Fans expected more and were hyper critical of everything which did not mesh seamlessly with canon. The shows writers tried to show how things got put on the path with resulted in the TOS universe, but could not get past the idea that they had to have stories like the other shows (Voyager had a similar problem trying to keep on premise). The Temporal Cold War wasted a lot of time but I really got tired of having the ship constantly finding new species which while interesting were never mentioned in and of the other shows.

    I like the show enough to have it be the only Trek series with all the DVDs on my shelf, the others are more selective. It was just getting it's act together in season 4 when the plug we pulled, I wish it had go on to seven seasons- the Romulan War and birth of the Federation would have been some great moments...
     
  8. phredy

    phredy Ensign Red Shirt

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    Sounds like I'm going to have to give it a second chance myself. Couldn't get UPN back when it premiered, so I had to form my opinion from the odd episode every now and then. It was probably Trek fatigue on my part, but it seemed like it wasn't a bad series, just a tired franchise which had gotten stuck in a rut and had fallen back on the standard sci-fi tropes.
     
  9. Robert D. Robot

    Robert D. Robot Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I, too, prefer the Enterprise Vulcan story lines and characters to what is seen in almost every episode of 24th Century Trek where the Vulcans were all stoic, boring interchangeable characters with the same bowl-shaped haircuts. Enterprise made the Vulcans interesting again and created a major story line that -while some others may not have liked what happened- allowed the Vulcan culture and society to actually move towards some interesting developments. Vulcans of the Enterprise era were not yet the Vulcans that we would see in the other series. I still think the other series did not need to make their Vulcans so homogeneous and [for me] boring....

    I really enjoyed Enterprise. I wish there had been more seasons, as I really felt that the show finally got on good footing by the fourth season.
     
  10. TerraNovan

    TerraNovan Lieutenant Commander

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    I always wonder the what ifs.


    What if a new network tookover In season 4, and never had the rights for the first three seasons.

    Something tells me the show would of went the distances.

    Enterprise just happened to have the worst timing in all of history. It was just before the niche upper tier networks took over. And just after the end of syndicated television(rise of the internet). The networks themselves was not something to underlook.

    It was very obvious from the get go, that they were pushing things in contradictory directions.
     
  11. Nebusj

    Nebusj Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'm embarrassed to admit that while talking about Enterprise with my bride recently we were both unable to think of Hoshi Sato. We just knew there was someone else in the cast and … no, we already mentioned Mayweather, because I used to have a running gag where I'd describe an episode plot with the a tag of ``three weeks later the ship returns to the planet because they remember they left Mayweather behind''.

    (We did eventually remember her, though, which since we haven't got smart phones is proof that memory can still work, in time.)
     
  12. johnjm22

    johnjm22 Captain Captain

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    There's been a lot of good commentary in this thread.

    From what I've seen of ENT so far, I think it and Voyager suffer from a lot of the same problems; bland characters, and tired formulaic stories.

    With other Trek, there's plenty of bad episodes, but it always felt like the writers were swinging for the fences. With VOY/ENT, none of it's terrible, but none of it's good either. The franchise was fatigued and over saturated. I think after DS9 Berman-era Trek had run it's course. There wasn't much gas left in the tank.

    Another problem is the failure of these shows to create compelling new races or antagonists. TOS gave us Vulcans, Klingons and Romulans, all of which became staples the Star Trek franchise. TNG gave us Cardassians, The Borg, and Ferengi while expanding on the Romulans and Klingons. DS9 expanded on the Cardasians and Ferengi, and introduced us to some fantastic villains like Weyoun, Dukat, The Founders and The Dominion as a whole. What did Voyager and Enterprise give us? The Kazon? The Suliban? I suppose you could argue that Voyager expanded on the Borg a little bit, but it felt like they had already run their course with TNG, and Trek writers in general kept going back to The Borg too often IMO. They were no longer as interesting as they once were.

    You're right. Music is about context.

    That said, it seems crazy that they would pick a song associated with Rod Stewart to be the theme. From a marketing stand point, Trek's handlers have often tried to disassociate it from its uncool nerdy image. Picking this song seems counterproductive to that goal. It makes the show feel dated and out of touch at time when the franchise was already running out of gas.

    Yeah, I agree. ENT starts off feeling much more natural and more well produced than previous series. The show in general is basically well made, just uninteresting. It never feels like the writers are being bold. All the episodes have felt "safe" so far.

    I think you're kind of making an excuse for them here. Even if the ship was made of different materials, the CGI still looked fake and cheap. It's especially bad when there's a lot going on in the space shots with multiple ships, explosions, space matter ect. It looks like a cartoon. Why couldn't they use real models like TNG? It looked so much better. I guess the CGI must just be cheaper.

    The technology seems uneven and they did a poor job of projecting it. It's funny seeing Archer watch low definition polo matches on a cheap computer monitor, or seeing Trip use a bulky camera.

    I can't comment on this too much, because I haven't seen the story line play out yet, but did they really need to compromise the defining characteristics of the species in order to create an interesting story? It just seems like lazy writing to me. If you look at all of Trek, there's really not that much stuff about Vulcans. I think there was plenty they could have done to explore them without completely changing what they are.

    Travis and Hoshi are just there to fill out the shows racial quota.

    It's good to have diversity of course, but if these characters are just blanks what's the point? It's kind of insulting. Ironically, I just got done watching "First Flight" (S2, EP24), and it felt white washed at times.

    In defense of the writers, it was probably difficult to do much with the Travis Mayweather character. Anthony Montgomery comes off as a very poor actor making him difficult to incorporate into scripts.
     
  13. RainKing

    RainKing Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    I was even more disappointed following my first legitimate watch of Enterprise when I read that they had plans to make Shran part of the crew and that T'Pol was going to be revealed as (half?) Romulan. I would like to have seen both of those things play out.
     
  14. BruntFCA

    BruntFCA Commander Red Shirt

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    This is easily the biggest problem with the first 2 seasons, it feels like it's just going through the motions. Some of the episodes are almost shocking in how lazy and unoriginal they are. Luckily seasons 3 & 4 feel much fresher.
     
  15. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral In Memoriam

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    The first ENT episode I actually liked was "Civilization", which is generally not held in high regard. But it felt the most like a TOS story to me, instead of a 24th century rewrite. As a bonus, it name-dropped the Malurians, whom Nomad would wipe out in about 100 years.
     
  16. Teacock

    Teacock Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Vulcans were always like this. Watch Amok Time.
     
  17. Teacock

    Teacock Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I love ENT but that is so true of the first seasons. Nothing bold about it. The mundane ploddings of space, like space really is only who the heck wants to watch that? Worst storyline ever for me, the one that killed ENT (until I returned and had my ENT epiphany and fell in love) was the stupid birthday cake story. Malcolm's frakking birthday cake, whatever shall it be. Gah.

    Now I like watching the first two seasons because I got attached to the characters and I watch them as if they are full of foreshadowing of what is to come. Everyone so jolly and stupid, no idea what they are in for. The last two seasons make the first two seasons better.
     
  18. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral In Memoriam

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    Hoshi playing detective to find out Malcolm's favorite food was like a plot out of The Brady Bunch.
     
  19. TerraNovan

    TerraNovan Lieutenant Commander

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    ironically I really like watching malcolm getting trapped by the bomb.

    If I had my way I would of killed hoshi off, she didnt even have sexy asian vibe which would of made her horridness not so unbearable. She was like a 5 year old kid panicing because she knew she didnt belong on the ship. If she was atleast a sex kitten it wouldnt of seemed like such horrid writing.

    If I had my way I would of killed her off in the first season.
    Replace her with a barking dog if it mattered. Her role was uber under utilized, she should of had a doctor daniel jackson type vibe, someone that was crucial to plot points. This was a total misstep in my opinion.

    The pilot guy was junk too.

    What killed me was the fact that trip seemed like the only human character that wouldnt get scrubbed out at starfleet academy.
     
  20. ScaryKittenRomantic

    ScaryKittenRomantic boo! mew! Moderator

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    Okay, we get that you didn't like Hoshi. But "sexy asian vibe"...? "Sex kitten"? What?

    I remember a few Trek actresses from TOS who might have had to put up with the term "sex kitten." 50 years ago.

    Hoshi was the comm officer, the linguistic genius and space rookie. The one who got to wear something other than the shapeless blue jumpsuit about 6 times over the course of the series. I really didn't get the impression that she was there to sex up the show.

    Jonas Grumby may disagree tho.

    But ENT already had a barking dog.