Game The Most Disliked Episode Written By Gene Roddenberry

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by Sakonna, May 6, 2020.

  1. Sakonna

    Sakonna Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2015
    Next up in these themed elimination games: EPISODES WRITTEN (at least partially) BY GENE RODDENBERRY.

    THE RULES. The basic idea is your standard elimination game. Below are the Star Trek episodes with any Gene Roddenberry writing credit. Eliminate your FAVORITE or the one you deem the 'BEST.' Please provide an EXPLANATION for why you are eliminating your choice and be sure to copy and paste the list with your choice removed.

    Leave at least 2 eliminations by other posters before you eliminate another episode.


    No tactical voting! You cannot remove an episode just because you feel it would threaten your preferred episode's chance to win.

    Enjoy! :bolian::beer::bolian::biggrin::bolian::borg:

    TOS Season 1: "The Cage" (written)
    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 1: "Charlie X" (story)
    TOS Season 1: "The Menagerie, Part I" (written)
    TOS Season 1: "The Menagerie, Part II" (written)
    TOS Season 1: "The Return Of The Archons" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "Bread And Circuses" (written with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "A Private Little War" (teleplay with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "The Savage Curtain" (teleplay with Arthur Heinemann, story)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
    TOS Feature: "Star Trek: The Motion Picture" (story, uncredited)
    TNG Season 1: "Encounter At Farpoint" (written with D.C. Fontana)
    TNG Season 1: "Hide And Q" (teleplay with C.J. Holland)
    TNG Season 1: "Datalore" (teleplay with Robert Lewin)
     
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  2. Xhiandra

    Xhiandra Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2012
    Saving "The Cage". The pilot really showcased the potential of the series really well. I liked how dark and cerebral it was, or at least wanted to be. By the same token, I think I liked (original) Pike more than (original) Kirk. I also liked Number One as a character, though they'd better have given her a real name at some point if they kept her.

    Bit strange to have both The Cage and The Menagerie on the list.

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 1: "Charlie X" (story)
    TOS Season 1: "The Menagerie, Part I" (written)
    TOS Season 1: "The Menagerie, Part II" (written)
    TOS Season 1: "The Return Of The Archons" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "Bread And Circuses" (written with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "A Private Little War" (teleplay with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "The Savage Curtain" (teleplay with Arthur Heinemann, story)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
    TOS Feature: "Star Trek: The Motion Picture" (story, uncredited)
    TNG Season 1: "Encounter At Farpoint" (written with D.C. Fontana)
    TNG Season 1: "Hide And Q" (teleplay with C.J. Holland)
    TNG Season 1: "Datalore" (teleplay with Robert Lewin)
     
  3. Sakonna

    Sakonna Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2015
    I find this a surprisingly undistinguished lineup, actually.

    I really only think "The Cage" is unambiguously great. Since that is saved already, I'll work down that line and take "The Menagerie, Part I" off the board.

    And I do really like Menagerie. Pike & the beep chair are so iconic!

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 1: "Charlie X" (story)
    TOS Season 1: "The Menagerie, Part II" (written)
    TOS Season 1: "The Return Of The Archons" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "Bread And Circuses" (written with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "A Private Little War" (teleplay with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "The Savage Curtain" (teleplay with Arthur Heinemann, story)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
    TOS Feature: "Star Trek: The Motion Picture" (story, uncredited)
    TNG Season 1: "Encounter At Farpoint" (written with D.C. Fontana)
    TNG Season 1: "Hide And Q" (teleplay with C.J. Holland)
    TNG Season 1: "Datalore" (teleplay with Robert Lewin)
     
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  4. Boo-rennyren

    Boo-rennyren Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    "Charlie X" was a haunting little story, with a tragic conclusion.

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 1: "The Menagerie, Part II" (written)
    TOS Season 1: "The Return Of The Archons" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "Bread And Circuses" (written with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "A Private Little War" (teleplay with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "The Savage Curtain" (teleplay with Arthur Heinemann, story)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
    TOS Feature: "Star Trek: The Motion Picture" (story, uncredited)
    TNG Season 1: "Encounter At Farpoint" (written with D.C. Fontana)
    TNG Season 1: "Hide And Q" (teleplay with C.J. Holland)
    TNG Season 1: "Datalore" (teleplay with Robert Lewin)
     
  5. The ABehrration

    The ABehrration Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Location:
    Bad Thoughts
    Coming up next: most disliked episode rewritten by Leonard Maizlish.
     
  6. The ABehrration

    The ABehrration Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Location:
    Bad Thoughts
    Saving Datalore: good concept for Data's nemesis, setting up lots of opportunities for the future, but also helping Spiner to define what makes Data unique.

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 1: "The Menagerie, Part II" (written)
    TOS Season 1: "The Return Of The Archons" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "Bread And Circuses" (written with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "A Private Little War" (teleplay with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "The Savage Curtain" (teleplay with Arthur Heinemann, story)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
    TOS Feature: "Star Trek: The Motion Picture" (story, uncredited)
    TNG Season 1: "Encounter At Farpoint" (written with D.C. Fontana)
    TNG Season 1: "Hide And Q" (teleplay with C.J. Holland)
     
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  7. Seven of Five

    Seven of Five Watch out HYDRA - here we come! Premium Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    UK
    I'll save The Motion Picture.

    It's such a grand film with a wonderful score, and I just like that the first film was an entirely different beast than what followed.

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 1: "The Menagerie, Part II" (written)
    TOS Season 1: "The Return Of The Archons" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "Bread And Circuses" (written with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "A Private Little War" (teleplay with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "The Savage Curtain" (teleplay with Arthur Heinemann, story)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
    TNG Season 1: "Encounter At Farpoint" (written with D.C. Fontana)
    TNG Season 1: "Hide And Q" (teleplay with C.J. Holland)
     
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  8. Tim Zombieson

    Tim Zombieson Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    May 27, 2009
    Location:
    Daniels' Illinois
    Can't save Menagerie I without saving Menagerie II. It also gave Pike a happy ending, of sorts.

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 1: "The Return Of The Archons" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "Bread And Circuses" (written with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "A Private Little War" (teleplay with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "The Savage Curtain" (teleplay with Arthur Heinemann, story)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
    TNG Season 1: "Encounter At Farpoint" (written with D.C. Fontana)
    TNG Season 1: "Hide And Q" (teleplay with C.J. Holland)
     
  9. at Quark's

    at Quark's Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2012
    Saving TNG Season 1: "Encounter At Farpoint" (written with D.C. Fontana) .

    Even though when viewed in retrospect, it is distinctly 'cartoony' when compared to later seasons, when the characters were more established, and the plot was relatively flimsy, it did set up the series, and a great series it turned out to be. And it certainly this pilot does have its strong points too. It sets up Picard as this intensely private man, who in his new function as captain of the flagship still needs to project an air of congeniality. It shows how everybody still has to get used to this new ship and their new function in it and more generally, it does set up most of the main characters properly, even if only sketchy, but that's OK, this was just the pilot and there would be enough time to flesh the characters out later. And most importantly, something that gradually disappeared from later TNG: the intense sense of mystery and wonder of what could be found inside the universe, both wondrous and dangerous (or as Q still in early TNG would say: to satiate desires both subtle and gross... but it's not for the timid).

    But perhaps that's what would happen: after you've encountered your third temporal anomaly or alternate dimension or clone of some of the crew, even those probably get mundane and just another day at the job...

    I could have done without Deanna's tears of joy though and her stammering of 'joy and gratitude' when the creature was liberated. Fortunately she did become a bit more detached from her duty as the series went on.

     
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  10. ananta

    ananta Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2020
    Not the greatest bunch of episodes tbh :shrug:I’m gonna save “Return of the Archons”, which I’ve always had a soft spot for. If you disagree, you are not of the body. It’s delightfully creepy and sinister and batshit crazy at times. Landru genuinely gave me the chills as a child. It also marks the first time Kirk talks a computer to death, as one does.

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "Bread And Circuses" (written with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "A Private Little War" (teleplay with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "The Savage Curtain" (teleplay with Arthur Heinemann, story)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
    TNG Season 1: "Hide And Q" (teleplay with C.J. Holland)
     
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  11. Boo-rennyren

    Boo-rennyren Commodore Commodore

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    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    "Bread and Circuses" was one of the most hokey examples of "Hodgkins' Law of Parallel Planet Development" ever (and Hodgkins already had a lot to answer for), but I will once again save it for the fantastic interplay between Spock and McCoy.

    In the arena:
    Spock: (obviously capable, and obviously sandbagging) Need any help, Doctor?
    McCoy: (just as obviously struggling) Whatever gave you that idea?!?

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "A Private Little War" (teleplay with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "The Savage Curtain" (teleplay with Arthur Heinemann, story)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
    TNG Season 1: "Hide And Q" (teleplay with C.J. Holland)
     
  12. Sakonna

    Sakonna Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2015
    I'll next save "Hide And Q." It's not great, but jesus, look at what's left on this list! And "Hide And Q" is kind of fun at least. There's some authentically bonkers weirdness in this. "Vicious animal things." The penalty box. "Is this sex to you?" And most of all, the Aldebaran serpent!

    I'm always struck by the sheer ridiculousness of the idea of a lifeform that's three snake heads coming out of an orb-of-light body. I was just looking up the serpent name on Memory Alpha, and was shocked to see an explanation for how this came about... as scripted, it was supposed to be Q appearing FIRST as a rotating ball of light, THEN as a snake, then as John De Lancie. And then they combined the two forms into one!

    That is some real in-the-weeds entertainment industry problem solving there. You're so in the thick of it, you get the word that the budget will only allow one transformation in this scene and not two, you LOVED the idea of the lightorb and you LOVED the idea of the snake and you don't want to lose either one of them, how are you going to stay in budget but also keep all your cool ideas -- wait, I've got it, SnakeLightOrb! A harmonious solution that lets you have everything and that doesn't feel bizarre or tortured at all! :rolleyes:

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "A Private Little War" (teleplay with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "The Savage Curtain" (teleplay with Arthur Heinemann, story)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2020
  13. Xhiandra

    Xhiandra Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2012
    Saving The Savage Curtain, chiefly for Surak. Everything else can "win", as far as I'm concerned.


    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "A Private Little War" (teleplay with Gene L. Coon)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
     
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  14. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    May 18, 2017
    Location:
    The clinic located by the Q Continuum
    Many to save because there's something of interest and/or intrigue, few to happily not because those are pure cringe (most on what's left and a few that aren't and I'll try to bleat about those eventually :devil:)... But right now, 2 are a virtual tie but since we're not allowed to yank two at once...

    TOS Season 2: "A Private Little War" (teleplay with Gene L. Coon)​

    It spoonfeeds just a little too much to let us know they're talking about Vietnam, the only thing missing was Dark Helmet Kirk turning to the camera and asking the audience if they picked up on the plot.

    The bleached circus ape outfit with unicorn horn up top visage for the Mugato looks ridiculous, but what does a non-ridiculous alien look like? They're alien and are supposed to look different. But the name isn't a mashup of "ape" and "narwhal" so I can rejoice over that if nothing else.

    Rubber joke dog poo and a dirty song'n'dance, complete with drum beating, to save Kirk's life marry him so the oingoboingo can be done because he's a hawt object is definitely a base Roddenberryism.

    What I did like -
    • There's actual danger in this adventure, starting with Spock being shot.
    • Dr M'Benga is a lovely addition to the crew, made more memorable by Booker Bradshaw. Also, :drool:
    • Nona's the most interesting/detailed/complex character in the show. She'd even fit in with the Blake's 7 crew, if not someone from the Federation. She's reminiscent of Avon, in terms of being a realist but she gets more interesting from there. Definitely well-acted. Her grizzly murder affected me. Also, :drool::drool:
    • Ditto for Tyree, who's clearly a stand-in for Blake and is well-acted. Also, :drool::drool::drool:
    • McCoy's bickering (in any scene) is a high point
    • The breaking out of orbit trope to keep the landing party in danger is well-used
    • The episode proves Klingons were not about an allegory of Communism as such, or at least the classic dictionary definition if nothing else, and per one line of dialogue: Krell: You will be rich one day, Apella, beyond your dreams. The leader of a whole world. A governor in the Klingon Empire.

    What's left and I'll place my bet of 50 quatloos offscreen to prevent influence:

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
     
  15. Farscape One

    Farscape One Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2017
    There's only one episode left I will save. "A PRIVATE LITTLE WAR" is off the list.

    This is a solid episode. And a really down ending, which TOS had more frequently than one might think at first glance. The look of defeat on Kirk's face at the end when he tells Scotty to beam down 100 flintlocks... it's one of the most haunting expressions he did in those 3 years. Thst alone saves this episode.

    The rest of the list... good luck determining a 'winner'. :)

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 2: "Assignment: Earth" (story with Art Wallace)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
     
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  16. Tim Zombieson

    Tim Zombieson Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    May 27, 2009
    Location:
    Daniels' Illinois
    I mean, it's not a Star Trek episode, just a failed pilot that Kirk and crew stumbled into, but Assignment: Earth is still quality television.

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
    TOS Season 3: "Turnabout Intruder" (story)
     
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  17. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    May 18, 2017
    Location:
    The clinic located by the Q Continuum
    Finally got a moment to read through the saved entries... Did not know that about the original intent of glowing orb followed by snakeathon followed by DeLancie (:drool:).

    I always saw it as three snakes in an exotic pot, like a rose in a vase. Imagine a row of them in the Planet of the Snakes' courtroom chamber pot place all discussing how to rule their land and how to corral all of those tasty inhabitants of Mouseville and to defend from the inhabitants of Mongooseland...

    H&Q's penalty box rocked. The scene is a tad dopey (no wonder Crosby wanted to leave)...

    H&Q showing sex on screen with Worf woofing it out... not as much. Unless you're referring to everyone else loving seeing Wesley getting poked...

    Tempting Riker is almost reminiscent of "Where No Man Has Gone Before", only we know what is causing it, making it more interesting. But WNMHGB feels more adult, less cartoony/rough drafty.

    The episode is cartoonish or comic booky but still has a charm and sense of adventure.
     
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  18. Sakonna

    Sakonna Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2015
    All of these left are also all offensive, to varying degree.

    I'll save "Turnabout Intruder", which at least also has some fun mixed in with the offensiveness. Shatner's performance in this one as divinely insane. The biggest mistake is shunting the action into that airless hearing at the mid-point. Once they were in this demented premise, they should have just left Shatner to Norma-Desmond about the ship for the full hour!

    TOS Season 1: "Mudd's Women" (story)
    TOS Season 2: "The Omega Glory" (written)
     
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  19. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
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    Location:
    The clinic located by the Q Continuum
    I disagree. The actors just about manage to elevate a plot that's worse than most TNG/S1 stories. If not all, to be honest - it's contrived more as a sales pitch than an actual story and it shows. Its saving graces are Garr and Lansing, who act their socks off in playing it completely straight and sincere.

    Some guy who is beaming in from half a galaxy away by Enterprise transporters, is the descendant of humans abducted 6000 years before him and raised by aliens just so humans wouldn't wipe each other out in the latter-20th century alone has incongruity and discontinuity and not just because he blends in so perfectly with peeps from the sixties...

    He also has a magic wand that can do literally anything on cue and with cat (whose shapeshifting ability can partially and retroactively explain the ludicrous scene as to why a redshirt can be killed by precious kitty so easily, OMG...) There's less than zero suspense in the episode because he can flick his wand and *voila*. It's all by-the-numbers.

    The story ends with exposition from Spock and Kirk that upends the entire point since everything happened the way it's supposed to, complete with comfy wool blanket and piping warm cocoa on a chilly winter's eve.

    The plotting is incredibly atrocious, right down to the missing agents. And how often do they need to do time travel, which looked dangerous in their first attempt that happened by accident, when there are so many parallel development worlds negating such a dangerous need and for many reasons. For a brief moment in the 1980s, this episode felt like a cozy time capsule nostalgiafest but that's just due to late-60s decor, a shiny happy very-60s orange/pink outfit requiring sunglasses to wear every time Teri Garr is on screen, and counting reused props such as the M5 for a cheap thrill. Even better, Twilight Zone or Outer Limits already did the basic tenets of Earth-centric sci-fi, and a lot better. And both had fallen out of favor by the late-1960s. A:E would be a misfire, even if the underlying story was good.
     
  20. JonnyQuest037

    JonnyQuest037 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2005
    Location:
    Parsippany, New Jersey, USA
    I'll save "Mudd's Women." Yeah, the gender politics haven't aged well, but it's still got that cool mystique that all early TOS episodes have, and it's worth saving for Roger C. Carmel's performance alone.

    So, our "winner" is:
    This one certainly starts out stronger than it finishes, but I still find it good goofy fun. Morgan Woodward is quite good as Captain Ron Tracey, and I've got to admit I still kind of love Kirk reciting the preamble to the Constitution.
    I agree that it's an undistinguished lineup, but given Roddenberry's talents as a writer, I don't find this too surprising.
    :guffaw::guffaw::guffaw:Beautiful. :techman:
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2020