Season 4 = Poor

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Discovery' started by Valandil, Mar 18, 2022.

  1. Valandil

    Valandil Captain Captain

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    I’m a huge Trek fan. I’ve loved Discovery S1-S3 (although not the S3 finale).

    I’m not here to complain about diversity (one of the best things about the show), the storylines (they’re fine) or the characters (they’re good, on paper).

    Star Trek has always explored emotions, in their many facets. But this season is so damned OTT it’s almost comical.

    Every position of adversity summons an anecdote about any characters childhood difficulties, and how this particular moment has helped them to overcome their past. People get emotional and bleary-eyed when a panel beeps. It’s seriously unrealistic: not because people don’t have emotions, but this is Starfleet. It’s a professional peacekeeping armada designed to protect and safeguard the Galaxy. Surely the fact that everyone on Discovery suddenly has deeply set, unresolved psychological issues isn’t realistic.

    Characters of the past - O’Brien’s war PTSD, Nog’s guilt, Worf’s relationships… all of them were able to set their difficulties aside on the bridge when push came to shove.

    Discovery seems - this season - to seriously struggle with this.

    For the record, this is nothing to do with wokeness. Star Trek has always been the shining light of forward thinking society. I love what Discovery has done for a diverse future, LGBTQ characters and highlighting societal issues today.

    I just really feel this season got derailed by poor screenplays, lacking emotional resonance because it was shoved down the throat rather than explored delicately.
     
  2. NCC-73515

    NCC-73515 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I thought S1 was kinda messy and S2 turned really bad in the second half. Then S3 and 4 were somehow worse, making 1 and 2 seem better in comparison :D
     
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  3. F. King Daniel

    F. King Daniel Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I agree this season was a noticeable step down from 1-3. After a strong start I found myself bored by meandering episodes that barely furthered anything and that's never a good sign.

    Everything's so soft and wishy washy, everyone gives each other pep talks even mid-crisis which is frequently infuriating. The only character with a real edge has been reduced to a technobabbble-spouting adopted dad. What happened to the major issue he was set up to have with Michael after season 3? I want season 1 Paul Staments back, who was either an asshole or baked on sporestuff. Tarka had that same edge but in this era of Discovery that made him the baddie. Book conspires against the president of the UFP and delegates from all allied planets and gets the equivalent of community service.
     
  4. Tosk

    Tosk Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It's a frustrating season to me because it feels like they actively tried to move away from some of their worse elements of seasons past, but weren't quite up to the task of telling an always-engaging story without falling back on the same old habits. The running "gag" this season of having one of the recurring extras tell a story from their past right when there's a time-crunch is just baffling.

    I have liked a few individual episodes this season, but the major problem (IMO) with the current obsession of having a season long arc is that if you don't stick the landing then any good work along the way is practically wasted. I won't want to watch it all again, and what point is there in just revisiting a few good eps that are forever woven into the larger story? My preferred approach would be a general arc that lends itself to multiple stories (or even not being part of the arc at all), not the "mystery box" ticking clock approach where you set up one big thing and then both stretch it out and hurry hurry hurry at the same time.
     
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  5. Cyrus

    Cyrus Vice Admiral Admiral

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  6. donners22

    donners22 Commodore Commodore

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    I don't think that's necessarily an example of doing it better. Past Trek tended to be very shallow when it came to trauma - O'Brien went through two decades of prison in a few hours, and it was never mentioned again. Torres was suddenly self-harming, with no build-up or follow-up. Uhura had her whole mind wiped, and was back to normal the next episode.

    Not to say that Disco does it well - I've not seen S4 - but past Trek didn't do it particularly well either, at the other end of the spectrum.
     
  7. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah, I would be hard pressed to call past Trek handling PTSD well, aside from brief moments of brilliance. Discovery is just another way of describing it. It will work for some, and not work for others.
     
  8. Tuskin38

    Tuskin38 Admiral Admiral

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    I think Season 4 is the best season yet.

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  9. F. King Daniel

    F. King Daniel Fleet Admiral Admiral

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  10. NCC-73515

    NCC-73515 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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  11. Cyrus

    Cyrus Vice Admiral Admiral

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    4
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    I like the trend
     
  12. shapeshifter

    shapeshifter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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  13. Uhura's Song

    Uhura's Song Captain Captain

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    I do not like the constant EMO breaks that happen all the time in every situation. I agree it is annoying.

    But S4 was, by far, the best finale. S2 was my favorite first half, but the second half was so terrible I'd rank it bottom. S1 was my next favorite first half, but the end was poor, though not as bad as S2.

    S3 was more consistently mediocre. The first half of the finale was good, the Burn explanation was just silly. Osyyra was almost really interesting for a minute. I dug her battle with Tilly. I also really liked the Georgiou exit episode.

    I am not sure S4 was the best, per se. But it was certainly the most satisfying, for me at least. The show misses Yeoh/Georgiou. She keeps/kept the EMO from getting out of control.

    4>1>3>2.
     
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  14. Uhura's Song

    Uhura's Song Captain Captain

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    I thought they did a good job with Detmer in S3.
     
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  15. DarKush

    DarKush Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I do feel like Season 4 is the most Trek-like from an organic (writing) and consistency basis. While it is a big mystery (like the Burn), it has a solution/resolution rooted in time honored and very Trek ideals of intellect over brawn, seeking/forging understanding instead of fisticuffs. However, the path to get to the finale hasn't been the most exciting. I jumped ahead to get to the final two episodes.

    Compared to the rest of the seasons, I think Season 4 overall delivered the best on its major arc, but I didn't find the season as enjoyable as I did the first season (which had some tight writing compared to some other Trek first seasons). I also was very much into Pike and the glimpses of the Enterprise in Season 2 and had more of the curiosity about the future (at the start of Season 3) that I didn't really have for the fourth season.

    I do wonder if the writers overdid it in taking away the edge from some characters. I too liked the arrogant/prickly Stamets from Season 1. I also preferred the insubordinate, wise cracking Reno of Season 2. While Reno still has retained some of that roughness, it feels mostly drained from Stamets, and both characters have been softened. I can get some softening, but perhaps the sharp elbows have been softened too much among the crew. Saru and Burnham went from rivals to frenemies to now treasured friends. It's like some of the DISCO characters were unlikeable in the first season, and the writers were willing to risk that, but due to backlash, have overcorrected. It's a tricky balance so I don't slam them for it. Granted, I would expect some softening due to these characters learning more about each other, and coming to trust each other over the years, and plus after being thrown into the future which would tie them even closer together, but still, it makes for some boring television at times.

    And this goes back to the Roddenberry no internal conflict edict. DISCO broke that quite a lot in their first season, but now are going in the opposite direction, and it feels a bit too gooey for me. On the older series I always liked when there was some internal conflict, or they brought in a character that would provide it like Ro or Jellico. I think DISCO missed a chance to perhaps bring in a future Federation main cast member who would provide that conflict. This season I see the Federation president definitely playing that role, but I'm thinking more of a crewmember who would be around longer than I suspect the president will.

    As it stands right now (still haven't seen all of Season 4), I do prefer the first two seasons of DISCO (perhaps while the series still could go anywhere).
     
  16. Ar-Pharazon

    Ar-Pharazon Admiral Premium Member

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    Sherlockbatch 1a3b.jpg
     
  17. DEWLine

    DEWLine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I disagree.

    I think we had a good journey to a good place here.
     
  18. Visitor1982

    Visitor1982 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Agree, for the most part.

    The show has gone way over the top with emotions and feelings this season. Especially during moments when it doesn't make any sense or is looking highly unprofessional.

    It's almost like watching a soap opera, a bad one that is.

    Hopefully next season, the crew aboard Discovery will act a bit more professionally and will talk about their feelings during off time, not when they're in the midst of stopping some kind of machine from destroying planets.

    I also want more character development for people like Stamets, Culber, Saru etc. This season we have learned nothing new about them.

    And also, if you raise the stakes, then make sure everything and everyone isn't just fine at the end. Boring!
     
  19. plynch

    plynch Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Gooey, upthread, is a good word. I stopped watching bc of that and a predictable plot. Earth won’t be destroyed and they’ll find a way to chill with the misunderstood/misunderstanding alien. I think Devil in the Dark did this better, in one ep, with smaller stakes we still care about.

    But to DSC-likers, I say like it and peace be with you.
     
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  20. Annorax849

    Annorax849 Commander Red Shirt

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    2 > 4 > 1 > 3

    4 was really getting good around episodes 5-7 and I thought it could easily be the best, but after the break I just kinda thought it stalled. I agree with the point made here that it was a good 8-episode story spread across 13
     
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