Seasons 7 is harder to get through than Season 1

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by Beard of Sisko, Sep 12, 2023.

  1. Beard of Sisko

    Beard of Sisko Lieutenant Newbie

    Sep 11, 2023
    I'm not sure I would go so far as to say Season 7 is worse than Season 1, but I do find it harder to get through on rewatches.

    And I think the reason why is there is a noticeable lack of passion in the final season, like they're just going through the motions and trying to get the season over with as evidenced by how often we get a "long lost relative of a cast member" episode over the course of the season. The last time I did a rewatch, roughly half the episodes had me glancing back and forth on my phone or tablet about halfway through because they can't hold my interest.

    By comparison, as poor as Season 1 is, I wasn't usually bored watching it. Because there actually is effort being put in. The writers were just hampered either by Gene's restrictions, over reliance on TOS nostalgia, or just plain incompetence. But I never got the sense they were phoning it in.

    I suppose if I were to give an honest comparison, Season 7 has a slight advantage due to a handful of episodes that are far better than anything Season 1 has to offer; Lower Decks, The Pegasus, and of course the finale. But it also has a much larger shade of episodes that just lose my interest after a while.

    Does anyone else feel this way?
  2. Tosk

    Tosk Admiral Admiral

    Jan 7, 2001
    On the run.
    Season seven definitely has some awful episodes, but it still has plenty to offer.
    My personal count is roughly twelve good-to-great eps in the season.
    Legate Duhmar likes this.
  3. NCC-73515

    NCC-73515 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Apr 18, 2019
    15 good ones for me, only 2 bad ones
  4. MrPicard

    MrPicard Jean-Luc's Loving Husband Fleet Captain

    Dec 29, 2019
    I've always preferred season 1 over season 7 (and most of the other seasons, too). Season 7 just has way too many boring episodes and it's mostly either "previously unknown family member shows up" or "some more of the same safe stories we've had for six seasons now"... or both. Last time I tried to re-watch TNG I stopped at season 6. I just couldn't even get myself to re-watch season 7 because the episode list was dauntingly dull.

    Yeah, unpopular opinion(s), probably. I know. ;)
    ananta, Richard S. Ta and Qonundrum like this.
  5. Dee1891

    Dee1891 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Mar 20, 2022
    Los Angeles
    I must admit that I'm not a fan of Seasons 6 or 7 of TNG, aside from a handful of episodes from each season. Yet, I would still prefer to watch both than Season 1, which I dislike very much.
    jackoverfull and Richard S. Ta like this.
  6. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Vice Admiral Admiral

    Season 1 definitely has that "we're finding our mojo, what's a mojo, who cares keep working at it and persist, *trip*, oh I think we stumbled on it but let's put that aside while we stumble about some more" thing, but season 7 - which is now long-established and even mini-rebooted if you consider season 5's tonal change - has that "We're coasting right to beddie-bye, snoooooooooooze, we don't care, let's work on that sequel cuz that's shiny" sleepwalking feel.

    The Better Episodes (IMHO)

    Season 1:
    1. Encounter At Farpoint
    2. Where No One Has Gone Before
    3. The Battle
    4. Hide & Q (some of it, anyway)
    5. Datalore (not for the plot but its execution, which is pretty amazing considering what's on paper)
    6. 11001001
    7. Home Soil
    8. Coming of Age
    9. Heart of Glory
    10. Skin of Evil (some of it, anyway)
    11. Conspiracy

    Season 7:
    1. Phantasms (some of it, anyway)
    2. Parallels (up until the ending that conflates space with time travel reset button magic)
    3. The Pegasus
    4. Lower Decks (some of it, anyway)
    5. Thine Own Self
    6. Genesis (not for the plot but its execution, which is pretty amazing considering what's on paper)
    7. All Good Things...

    For episode count, season 1 wins out for me.

    For tone and feel, season 1 also wins. Despite the stumbling, there's a genuine freshness to the feel and the variety therein. Even "When the Bough Breaks" shows TNG catering to wider audiences than typical adults. In the same season as "Justice" - the one that, you know, is about as NC17 as any 20th century Trek could get and isn't any less cringeworthy as a result. Season 7 just feels stale after stale. Where's that weather control for the caber toss all while the doc is banging some fart monster? Sheesh, they really were out of gas...
  7. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Vice Admiral Admiral

    Nothing unpopular about it. An opinion is an opinion and it's definitely an agreeable and arguably a great one to have as well.

    Season 7, IMHO, was a slight step up in some ways from 5 and 6, but it still felt burnt out. Even "Pegasus" feels more like a DS9 story, but in fairness they did an uninspired follow-up with Thomas T. Riker (the "T" stands for "the truly tacky transporter twin trope", of course.) I've not rewatched many of 6, or 5. But TNG's first 57.142857142857142857142857142857% (approximately, and in terms of seasons rather than raw episode count thanks to season 2 being clobbered) definitely is above the remaining 42.857142857142857142857142857143% in terms of freshness.

    Even when TNG7 dares to be daring, the "55mph but in space" episode is pretty much forgotten, with one or two exceptions acknowledging the issue. But to be fair, if every last episode needed someone to say "remember to do 55mph" - thankfully they just said "maximum warp, go for it!" as if nothing mattered or, even more amusingly, when the ship they're hightailing it toward is just sitting there like that goose in a pot wondering why the swimming pool is getting nice and comfy and where these carrot-shaped flotation devices are coming from...

    The only show that got away with introducing relative after relative after relative after relative after relative (after relative) was The Golden Girls: Maybe Star Wars as well, since that baby daddy thing got people all wound up and stuff and they wanted to cash in with the small universe syndrome, but it got harder to believe the moment they refer to Leia, what with her and Luke frenching in the previous two films and Leia then says "I know" in the reveal that she's his sister, whoops... At least Spaceballs took the dickens out of the trope with one of the greatest parody lines ever conceived...

    ...and here it is! :biggrin:

  8. somebuddyX

    somebuddyX Commodore Commodore

    Nov 14, 2014
    Fair enough opinion OP but, I can't stand Season 1 and I love Season 7. Maybe it's nostalgia because it's the first season I watched when it aired here in Sydney and I was 12, but it has a lot of highs and even the lows are at least entertainingly bad. Whereas Season 1 I just found boring and I couldn't finish it when I tried a proper rewatch. I do find it's behind the scenes execution fascinating but more about what didn't turn up onscreen than what did.
    saladdays and Qonundrum like this.
  9. Zapp Brannigan

    Zapp Brannigan Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Nov 7, 2022
    I've always liked "Parallels." The idea of "what if...?" was fun, and some of the variations were creative, in my opinion. I wish Trek did more like it, such as the short-lived Myriad Universes book series.
  10. JesterFace

    JesterFace Fleet Captain Commodore

    Jun 1, 2014
    Suomi Finland
    This discussion feels something like pick your favourites and stick with them instead of forcing your way through an entire season.
    Season 7 has weak episodes but it also has really good ones.
    somebuddyX, Qonundrum and Oddish like this.
  11. Oddish

    Oddish Admiral Admiral

    Sep 7, 2020
    Kanto, Poké-World
    Both seasons have their downsides. S1 had "Hide and Q" (AKA "Riker lets a kid die and gives everyone what they don't want and this is supposed to make us think being human is just so wonderful") and "Symbiosis" (AKA "That episode that makes me gag when Picard delivers his 'oooh, Prime Directive-induced suffering is wonderful' speech"). And those are the episodes most people don't think are all that bad.

    Meanwhile, S7 had "Interface" (AKA "Geordi's the only TNG character who hasn't suffered a devastating family loss... oops, never mind) and "Force of Nature" (AKA "What if they set a speed limit and nobody ever mentioned it again?")
    Qonundrum likes this.
  12. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Vice Admiral Admiral

    True. All the seasons do. There are times when I want to sit through the odd old episode that was pure cringe at the time, to see if a new take on some of the material might elevate it. Which isn't to say that x or y episode is now an all-time great, but definitely picking up on some idea or bit of dialogue that was otherwise not perceived at the time because of how crappy everything else in it was.
  13. Oddish

    Oddish Admiral Admiral

    Sep 7, 2020
    Kanto, Poké-World
    I think S7 is the stronger for me because it has more really good ones... "Phantasms" is crazy fun, "Lower Decks" was so good they made a series out of it, and "All Good Things" blows "Encounter" out of the water.

    And as for "hilariously bad", I think "Code of Honor" is outclassed by "Sub Rosa".
    somebuddyX likes this.
  14. JesterFace

    JesterFace Fleet Captain Commodore

    Jun 1, 2014
    Suomi Finland
    Except.... I remember that at least once Picard was allowed to break the speed limit.
    In 'The Pegasus' Admiral Blackwell tells Picard he is allowed to break the warp speed limit during the next mission.
  15. JesterFace

    JesterFace Fleet Captain Commodore

    Jun 1, 2014
    Suomi Finland
    This has something to do with my recent thread about revisiting some episodes that I have skipped for years.
    Good thing I did revisit them, there was some nice material hidden....
    Richard S. Ta likes this.
  16. Mojochi

    Mojochi Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Aug 18, 2007
    I still give the edge to season 7 over season 1. While I agree that they had more enthusiasm & boldness in S1, with contrarily more complacency & writer fatigue in S7, (& their minds more set on a theatrical cinema release) the show itself was at its zenith for production quality, on the whole. They just put out better made episodes imho, from sheer experience. One of the most reviled S7 episodes, Sub Rosa still looks tenfold better than anything they achieved in S1, which by comparison looks almost amateurish, in terms of film making aesthetics.

    Plus, where it can be said they took more risks in S1, they in turn achieved more excellence in season 7. The Pegasus & Lower Decks are among the very best episodes they ever did imho, in both concept & execution. I wouldn't put anything from S1 as being among their best. (Which is entirely understandable it being their freshman outing). Even most of the middling episodes from S7 far out do most of S1.

    I can't argue though that the quality of premise writing declined a lot in the back 2 seasons, but now & then some real greatness snuck in there too. It's really a matter of taste in whether you can more tolerate a sporadic decline due to fatigue or an awkward ramp up, both of which this show suffered, I'm afraid.
    Tosk and MrPicard like this.
  17. STEPhon IT

    STEPhon IT Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Jan 27, 2010
    Sunny California
    I would by far claim its (SEASON 7) worse than Season 1 because there's only 1 episode I love, "All Good Things...". Season 1 was never suppose to hit its mark on day 1, they started with architypes which fit appropriately to episodes TNG was trying to tell. Some episodes were rehashes from TOS and doesn't help much but that season of TNG was new and different and I will always appreciate it for what it was.

    Oh you are being very generous because I thought the entire season was just plain terrible from DATA having a Mom, Picard have an illegitimate son, to Lore ruling the Borg, Geordi seeing his dead mother, who's not dead... but really is, Picard pretending to be a smuggler or grave robber, Beverly encountering Ghosts or better yet DATA being possessed... Oh there's more crap that season made was a complete mess. Its saving grace was "All Good Things..." which was the best series finale I'd ever seen for a TV show.
  18. Phoenix219

    Phoenix219 Commodore Commodore

    Feb 2, 2016
    I grew up watching TNG, but am more of a 23rd century fan all the way around, and don't hide my dislike of later TNG (or how much I LOVED Picard S03.) I don't revisit TNG often, but when I do, its always Season 1 - Season 3. I take the Best of Both Worlds as a series finale, with Brothers as the epilogue, then skip to First Contact. Picard redeemed Nemesis, so I guess I'm only skipping two of their movies next time, then jumping to Picard S03.

    Anyways.....I will take S1 over S7 *every single time*
    Richard S. Ta likes this.
  19. Farscape One

    Farscape One Vice Admiral Admiral

    Mar 2, 2017
    Farscape One
    I would have to say that overall, TNG season 7 is worse than TNG season 1. For several reasons...

    1. Season 1 felt like they were actually exploring, which is precisely their mission.

    2. There are more great episodes in season 1 than 7. "Where No One Has Gone Before", "The Battle", "The Big Goodbye", "Datalore", "11001001", "Home Soil", "Heart of Glory", "The Arsenal of Freedom", "Skin Of Evil", and "Conspiracy" vs. "Phantasms", "Dark Page", "Parallels", "The Pegasus", "Lower Decks", "Masks", and "All Good Things...". 10 episodes against 8.

    3. The writing of season 7... you can tell the writing staff was burned out. With season 1, while there was a LOT of chaos and issues behind the scenes, it still felt fresh. (Which a brand new series should feel fresh, and while it's understandable that a 7th season could feel burnt out, there are enough shows out there that have lasted that long or longer but still didn't lose as much steam as TNG season 7 did.)

    4. Ghost sex? Troi becoming a full Commander before the Second Officer of the flagship? The Worf/Troi pairing? The warp speed limit that would fundamentally change the franchise but really goes nowhere? With the entire B story of the same episode center on a cat's behavior? THIS is what we got for season 7?! Really, guys?

    While some of season 7's off episodes were well directed or fun ("Genesis" falls squarely into BOTH categories), there were far more misses than hits. The show knew better by this point what would or would not work, so there really is no excuse why season 7 is full of so much mediocrity.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2023
    Oddish likes this.
  20. Oddish

    Oddish Admiral Admiral

    Sep 7, 2020
    Kanto, Poké-World
    Of course, no way Star Trek's going to admit the existence of ghosts. A ghost is just an anaphasic lifeform that wants to get jiggy with you.

    One of my least favorite moments in the series is Troi smugly telling Data that he can call her "sir". Though in fairness, that's probably only about 10% because I don't think Deanna deserved it. The rest is 70% because Data SERIOUSLY earned that gold pip, and 20% because calling women "sir" is crap, and I'm glad Janeway didn't put up with it.

    Blechhh. :barf:

    No kidding. They should never have made that one if they weren't going to act on it.

    Well, cats DO make everything better.

    Yup. That's what we got. :ack:

    Especially when compared to DS9's rip-roaring denouement.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2023