Opinion circa 1987: TNG is NOT Star Trek

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by Thomas Elliot, Mar 3, 2020.

  1. TimeIsAPredator

    TimeIsAPredator Commander Red Shirt

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    Come on no fan nowadays expects to suddenly see a show about Picard Riker and the lads flying

    Oh wait
     
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  2. Skipper

    Skipper Commodore Commodore

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    I read somewhere that some fans really believed that the end of Star Trek 4, when our heroes received the Enterprise-A, would be the prelude to a new television series. Obviously they were hopes with no basis.
     
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  3. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I gather that the original plan (or at least hope), and the reason that characters like Saavik and David were introduced, was to gradually phase out the aging TOS crew in favor of a more literal "next generation" who would carry the series forward. Instead, the sequels reversed course, wrote out or killed off the new characters, and doubled down on keeping the old guard together. I suppose it's conceivable that if they had gone forward with the original plan, the younger replacement cast might eventually have been brought to TV.
     
  4. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk Tomorrow Never Knows Premium Member

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    Must be a universe somewhere that Saavik is the Captain of the Enterprise and David Marcus is her Science Officer.
     
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  5. diankra

    diankra Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    FWIW, I recall a very confident conversation over a drink in early 87 about how TNG would fail, because Trek fans wanted Kirk and Spock, and Who/B7 fans hated Trek.
    Totally wrong. But we all agreed then.
     
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  6. Skipper

    Skipper Commodore Commodore

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    It seems that early proposals for the new show had the old cast in a more active role (From Wikipedia).
    The source is this article from the New York Times. The date is November 2, 1986 so it's perfectly possibile people read it and believed that it would be the format of the new show
    NEW 'STAR TREK' PLAN REFLECTS SYMBIOSIS OF TV AND MOVIES
     
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  7. Skipper

    Skipper Commodore Commodore

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    The fans quoted in the article claimed their comments were taken out of context.

    Source
     
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  8. Orphalesion

    Orphalesion Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I dunno "might appear as elder statesmen" sounds more like "some of them might appear in an episode or two as politians/leaders/admirals", as McCoy and, eventually, Spock did, rather than "a more active role"
    It's really kinda like expecting Season 2 of Picard involving the whole Enterprise D crew to get back together and go exploring again full-time.
    Just not happening and, imho, not really even desirable.
     
  9. Skipper

    Skipper Commodore Commodore

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    Now I really want to read that article, but unfortunately is behind a pay wall. Do anyone here have a subscription to New York Times...?
     
  10. Timewalker

    Timewalker Cat-lovin', Star Trekkin' Time Lady Premium Member

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    Apologies for quoting posts several weeks old, but I just found this thread.

    TNG was a soap opera right from the get-go. The first season hadn't even finished before one of my friends started writing a TNG soap opera parody, chronicling the lives and loves and idiocies of Captain Jacquard and Commander Bill Biker. The whole thing had a "Mary Hartman" kind of vibe to it, with cliffhangers that left her readers wanting the next installment now.

    My first reaction on seeing the cast list was, "Oh, I recognize LeVar Burton, I saw him in Roots" and then I tried to reconcile the idea of Lucius Aelius Sejanus/Gurney Halleck/Henry Grey, Duke of Suffolk (I, Claudius/Dune/Lady Jane) as a starship captain. I was used to seeing Patrick Stewart in historical and literary roles, not Star Trek. Eventually I concluded that I still liked Patrick Stewart but wasn't so fond of the overly-preachy, sanctimonious Captain Picard. I'd never heard of any of the rest of them.

    Unless you're into historical drama in settings and eras that don't involve the U.S.

    It's funny, how so many Star Trek actors were also on Bonanza. There's a UK equivalent between actors who were both in I, Claudius and Doctor Who. In fact, one of the I, Claudius actresses appeared in Doctor Who in different roles, 25 years apart.

    If you want to get technical, the holodeck was introduced in the TAS episode "The Practical Joker". As for money not existing... I interpret this to mean cash doesn't exist in the 23rd century (at least not on Earth), which is why Kirk can't pay for the pizza. His bank doesn't exist yet, never mind his Federation credits.

    I guess to people who aren't into historical drama or Shakespeare...

    Good luck with that. She died years ago.


    My own introduction to TNG was the evening of an SCA tournament/feast. The autocrat happened to have a nice large living room and VCR, and taped "Encounter at Farpoint" and after the feast, invited about 25 people to watch it with her.

    So there we all were, still wearing our medieval clothes, watching TNG. Nobody said anything about "meeting gods." We were happy to see Deforest Kelley, and the only comment about Q was "that's Trelane, all grown up." (it was a reasonable assumption at the time).

    I was unimpressed with first-season Picard. Every damn time the ship was in danger, did he make a firm decision to do something?

    Nope. They had a friggin' meeting. I remember the first time I saw Picard lose his temper and punch someone. I stood up in my living room and applauded.

    So much for a peaceful future... :p

    I still have a few issues of Interstat, a letterzine that was published on a monthly basis (no internet back then). Opinions were pretty varied about TNG.
     
  11. Jonesy

    Jonesy Commodore Commodore

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    If I recall correctly, David Gerrold claimed that Gene wanted David's title on TNG to be "Head Writer" around the time that they were collaborating on the series bible. Of course, that status and situation changed for the worse once production of the show actually began, as it did for D.C. Fontana and others who had worked on TOS.
     
  12. TimeIsAPredator

    TimeIsAPredator Commander Red Shirt

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    To me the comment about Stewart in the article reeked of that old US snobbery towards non Hollywood actors. They could have easily said respected UK actor and not been knobs about it. At least Harry Potter changed that attitude a little since
     
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  13. Tenacity

    Tenacity Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The old "bait and switch."
     
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  14. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I think there was plenty of respect for accomplished British Shakespearean actors in the US long before Harry Potter. Keep in mind that the article is evidently from a sensationalist tabloid, prone to to emphasizing the most extreme negative reactions rather than giving a balanced report. So its reporting can't be presumed to represent the actual mainstream opinions of the era.
     
  15. TimeIsAPredator

    TimeIsAPredator Commander Red Shirt

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    It's a pretty recurring theme with TV and movies that actors are unknown or havnt made it until they are big in the US. Bit like how they can't handle a movie or TV show without a North American lead so have to recreate shows with American accents
     
  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    There are countless American shows whose lead actors are British or Australian, e.g. Fringe's Anna Torv and John Noble, Batwoman's Ruby Rose, all three of Without a Trace's lead actors, etc. If there ever was any institutional resistance to using non-North American leads in US productions, it evaporated decades ago.

    And insofar as any such resistance may have existed, it was just doubt that they'd be popular enough with American audiences, not any sort of snobbery about their talent, which would be absurd with respect to a 20-year RSC veteran like Stewart was at the time. Again, don't mistake the tabloid's inflammatory reporting for the actual attitudes of the public or the institution.
     
  17. TimeIsAPredator

    TimeIsAPredator Commander Red Shirt

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    Evaporated decades ago was my point as Harry Potter was 19yrs ago now
     
  18. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    And my point is that it was far, far earlier than that. From my perspective, Harry Potter is still fairly recent, not some ancient classical text from the dawn of time.
     
  19. Serveaux

    Serveaux American Premium Member

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    No, it's really that Americans just prefer to watch TV shows about Americans. A British cop show, for example, travels really badly in terms of audience draw here because of cultural differences. Same's true for medical dramas and particularly situation comedies.
     
  20. TimeIsAPredator

    TimeIsAPredator Commander Red Shirt

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    To me that's pretty perplexing I'm Irish and like everyone else here the majority of the TV we watch is British or American and we can understand them fine. USA is unusual in the sense that it can't seem to handle shows from other cultures