Recommend three episodes for a NuTrek skeptic

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Lower Decks' started by cal888, Apr 25, 2022.

  1. cal888

    cal888 Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2006
    Hey guys, I dipped out of Kurtzman-era Trek after the end of season 2 of Discovery. I'm planning on signing up for a month of Paramount+ to watch season 2 of Picard, as I'm a fan of co-showrunner Terry Matalas.

    I'm also planning on watching the first three episodes of Strange New Worlds, to at least have an informed opinion as to it's ahem degree of quality beyond the obvious canon discontinuity issues.

    I'm willing to give Lower Decks a chance as well. Perhaps the most impactful criticism of it I've heard is that it's too postmodernist and deconstructive, and laughs at Star Trek almost as a parody, instead of being something like an animated Orville that laughs with it. So if the whole show really is this, perhaps it's best I just not go there.

    But if you feel this assessment is incorrect or incomplete, could the Lower Decks fans (and grudging hate watchers) suggest three episodes of the show to sample? To give it an extra chance it doesn't even need to be the initial episodes... although I guess one condition I'd place is all three sampled episodes can't be from the same season, to at least check out what changes happened between the first two seasons.

    Thanks
     
  2. Turtletrekker

    Turtletrekker Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2003
    Location:
    Tacoma, Washington
    "No Small Parts," "wej DuJ" "First First Contact"

    One from the first season and two from the second season. There's only been two seasons, so I can't give you samples from three different seasons.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2022
  3. donners22

    donners22 Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2001
    Location:
    Australia
    I'm not a huge fan of Lower Decks - I simply don't find it very funny - but I don't see how that "impactful criticism" could be made in good faith. It sounds like an overly precious YouTuber trying to push a "They hate real Trek" narrative. The show is plainly made with a love for past series, perhaps a little too much.

    Veritas and The Spy Humongous are standouts for me.
     
  4. Vger23

    Vger23 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2014
    Location:
    Enterprise bowling alley
    Veritas, No Small Parts, Wej Duj

    It definitely doesn't "parody" or "laugh at" Star Trek. It is a massive love-fest for Trek...and part of the fun of watching it is that it absolutely oozes love and affection for even the most obscure elements of the Trek franchise.

    I'm not a fan of the show overall, but I'm also not a fan of animated stuff on the whole, so I do have an inherent bias. I don't find it to be funny, but I find myself smiling a fair amount at the endearing and sometimes charming elements.

    In fairness, there are other times or episodes where it is completely over-the-top and painful to watch, at least for me, and I get a physical headache just from watching it for 24 minutes. It's an extremely uneven series from my perspective. It has some brilliant episodes that I've rated 9/10 or 8/10 (three of which I listed above), and it also has some absolutely objectionable garbage as well (3/10 level stuff).

    I'd honestly recommend Star Trek Prodigy over Lower Decks...but that's just my personal opinion. I find PRO to have tons of heart and charm, but without some of the absolute ridiculousness and over-the-top freneticism of LD. Many people on this board love LD much more than I do, and often they are people with the same "leanings" you have expressed (a fair lack of interest in other Paramount + Trek products).
     
    cal888 likes this.
  5. The Wormhole

    The Wormhole Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2001
    Location:
    The Wormhole
    Envoys. wej DuJ, First First Contact.
     
  6. TimeIsAPredator

    TimeIsAPredator Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2020
    Wej Duj is one of the finest episodes of anything I have seen in a long time.
     
  7. dupersuper

    dupersuper Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2020
    Yeah; if you're going to limit me to 3, this is a good list. I do love Crisis Point though...
     
  8. Bornin1980something

    Bornin1980something Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2020
    It's been nominated for a Hugo.
     
  9. cal888

    cal888 Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2006
    Ok guys I'm back from my Mexico trip and have Paramount Plus going thanks to an Amex card offer.

    Just watched the season 2 premiere episode of STP. Despite a few cringe moments, I largely liked it... most of it "felt" like Star Trek.

    Onto the STLD totals...
    [2x09] Wej Duj -- 5
    [1x10] No Small Parts -- 3
    [1x08] Veritas -- 3
    --------------------------------------
    [2x10] First First Contact -- 2
    [1x02] Envoys -- 1
    [2x06] Spy Humongous -- 1
    [1x09] Crisis Point -- 0.5

    Almost looks like Season 1 > Season 2?

    I'll watch the three finalists in production order and report back in the coming days. Thanks to those that contributed to the indications.
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2022
  10. cal888

    cal888 Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2006
    TL;DR... I'm surprisingly open to viewing more episodes.

    Ok guys, I've watched "Veritas", "No Small Parts", and "Wej Duj". It was... very very very weird and surreal. To borrow a phrase from Red Letter Media, there was a degree of "secular blasphemy" towards the franchise, but I guess I was fearing far worse? I genuinely enjoyed "Wej Duj", found "No Small Parts" mostly good minus the over the top Riker / Troi portrayals, and "Veritas" was maybe just a little too Rick and Morty?

    My stream of consciousness notes for "Veritas"
    • wow it really is Star Trek: Rick and Morty
    • wtf, the opening credits, trippy as fuck
    • liking having the episode title and credits over act 1... TNG font
    • Kurtwood Smith!
    • everyone shits on Boemler, Morty stand in?
    • Roga Danar!
    • at least the shuttle designs are all canon (TOS, movie era, TNG era...)
    • TFF dance call back!?!
    • Orion(?) female ensign is like Carol / Sheryl from Archer... same voice actress?
    • loved the cleaner bit
    • Mariner is like Rick in a young woman's body?
    • thumbs up to the accurate Romulan designs
    • why are the references so specific to the Enterprise-D?
    • why the constant cursing?
    • Q?!?
    Verdict... with a few rough edges sanded down would have been far better, and it felt too Rick and Morty with some Archer, but watchable.

    My stream of consciousness notes for "No Small Parts"
    • Beta III !
    • TOS era (era of scientists? more or less) -- ok I grant you that, clever
    • so wanna be Rick is the captain's daughter?!?
    • obscure Californian city references going on... warms the heart of this native Californian
    • weird sex jokes, really?
    • Wolf 359 was an inside job! -- ok I actually laughed at that one!!
    • more weird cringe than funny
    • shouldn't it be two ensigns to a crew quarters cabin, not these weird bunkbeds in a corridor?
    • Exocomp is sooo cute
    • Badgey? WTF... ok that must be a call back to the episode with the murderous combadge hologram that made a certain YouTuber explode with anger
    • Pakleds? ok good use
    • mostly watchable, just too weird
    Verdict... much better than the former episode

    "Wej Duj" -- I was so drawn into the episode I didn't even take notes! Just noticed that the Bajoran security chief's death had been reset buttoned and that Boemler didn't make it long on the Titan.

    I only laughed two or three times, so I didn't really find it funny per say. But it wasn't sheer horror or grossly offensive.

    So now the question is which episodes should I leave out on a first watch through?
     
    Vger23 likes this.
  11. The Wormhole

    The Wormhole Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2001
    Location:
    The Wormhole
    Leave out? None, if you're convinced about watching this show, watch the whole thing.
     
  12. Vger23

    Vger23 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2014
    Location:
    Enterprise bowling alley
    A couple of notes:

    The Pakleds are the series recurring villains, which is kind of funny.
    Weird sex jokes are the norm. Not sure why to be honest. I don’t object to sex jokes, but the LD ones all fall flat for me.
    Badgey is fucking awful. The “character” first appears in “Terminal Provocations” which is a dogshit episode.
     
    TedShatner10, cal888 and fireproof78 like this.
  13. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2014
    Location:
    In SUMMMMMMER!
    Try it all.
     
    McCoy's Disco Collar and cal888 like this.
  14. cal888

    cal888 Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2006
    Ok guys for the life of me I can't figure out the multiquote feature (haha lurking here off and on since ENT but it's not like I'm a regular) but I'll have a go at the whole series, then maybe Prodigy during my month of Paramount Plus.
     
    dupersuper likes this.
  15. Vger23

    Vger23 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2014
    Location:
    Enterprise bowling alley
    Prodigy is really good. The first episode is shaky, but it really takes off after that.
     
    McCoy's Disco Collar and cal888 like this.
  16. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2014
    Location:
    In SUMMMMMMER!
    Right next to reply is the +Quote button. You click on what you want to quote, then a box down at the bottom by the reply box pops up (mine is blue) and says "Insert quote".
     
    cal888 likes this.
  17. ivypool

    ivypool Ensign Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2021
    The first two, Mariner and Boimler feel like shallow caricatures of the characters they would eventually become, the plots are drab at best, and the last ten seconds of the first episode is perhaps the most painful moment of the whole series.
     
  18. dupersuper

    dupersuper Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2020
    Nothing is more painful than Mariner yawning in the briefing room...
     
    donners22 and Kelso like this.
  19. ivypool

    ivypool Ensign Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2021
    I just had to double check to be sure I wasn’t confused. I’m referring to S1E1’s ending, where Mariner is just listing off random references.
     
  20. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2014
    Location:
    In SUMMMMMMER!
    Mariner is hilarious and irritating at the same time. Her rambling list sounds like some history majors I know. I genuinely laughed.
     
    BillJ and Bornin1980something like this.