The Orville. Anyone loving it?

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Gingerbread Demon, Dec 23, 2019.

  1. Jedi Marso

    Jedi Marso Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well, I finally decided to give The Orville a whirl a couple weeks ago, and I'm now one episode into S3 and loving it.

    At first, some of the humor was a little off-putting, but although it can be hit and miss, it sort of grows on you. It helps that as the series goes on, the hijinks seem to taper off. I have grown to really enjoy the humorous aspects of it, though.

    Love that the characters are all 'real people' who behave like real people, for the most part. Although the 'modern' music works fantastically in many episodes, I do think it unlikely that they don't know what a cellular telephone is but they listen to Billy Joel, Dolly Parton, and Journey.

    Lack of transporters- check! Thank you!

    This is turning into a really good show in its own right- not just a parody (or some might tribute) to TNG-era Trek. Production values in the third season are notably higher, and they've improved the uniforms in a way that you almost fail to notice how much better they are than the old ones.

    Love the overriding spirit of optimism- something very much absent from modern Trek other than a bit that shines through in SNW.

    Glad I gave this show a second chance. I hate to say it, but it blows any and every post-2005 Trek out of the water.
     
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  2. Jedi Marso

    Jedi Marso Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    One further note: I am seeing some clear and obvious 'lifts' in this show, both cinematically and musically from others.

    In particular, I have heard musical snippets from the TMP soundtrack (V'ger stuff), Aliens, and other refrains that are clearly intended to invoke ST or SW themes. Musically, they seem to run back to Alien/Aliens quite a bit, particularly when building suspense. I'm not complaining- I love it.

    Visually, we've got Brundlefly turned into an entire species, an asteroid field chase where they 'thread the needle' and destroy their Kaylon pursuers, cybermen in the form of the Kaylon (old Dr. Who), Seleyans are a reference to Vulcan, right down to the ears.... every show seems to have some sort of callback or easter egg to something that came before. I love that, too.
     
  3. Gingerbread Demon

    Gingerbread Demon Stealer of all the cookies in time and space Premium Member

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    Does anyone have news on a season 3 bluray or DVD?
    Information online seems scarce.
     
  4. The Wormhole

    The Wormhole Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    There might not be a physical media release for season 3. Disney does not do physical media releases of its streaming shows from Disney+ or Hulu, while nothing produced by 20th Century Fox for television has been released on physical media since the Disney buyout, and that includes MacFarlane's other shows.
     
  5. Gingerbread Demon

    Gingerbread Demon Stealer of all the cookies in time and space Premium Member

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    Ta thanks. Looks like I will miss out but I do not wish to sign up for anymore streaming services at this point in time.
     
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  6. ED-209

    ED-209 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Could anyone else not help but laugh a little when the kids were abusing K1?
     
  7. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Same here.

    On the plus side, various clips are popping up on YouTube faster than "whack a mole" clones so one can get the gist of enough storylines. Some look great, some are beneath "cheezy". Only two clips were of comedic moments, which are apparently few and far between due to the new serious direction taken. As for the new "serious" approach to the show, it's not bad... but the show feels a lot more generic now, and the Kaylon are even more contrary to season two's theme of "with our vastly more powerful ships, kill all biologics, no exceptions, even every bacterium wiggling around". Which isn't to say one or two clips involving them weren't impressive, but not since the Kromaggs from "Sliders" or the Visitors from 1983's "V" did a threat start out brilliantly but (IMHO, YMMV) stray afterward.
     
  8. Jedi Marso

    Jedi Marso Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think the show handled the Kaylon situation well, because if it hadn't, the entire show would have become a case of '...but what if the Kaylon show up." By the end of S3, things have achieved a new equilibrium, more or less, with more places to go.

    I definitely want to see more of how the Mercer-Teleya saga plays out!
     
  9. Gingerbread Demon

    Gingerbread Demon Stealer of all the cookies in time and space Premium Member

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    Speaking of V did that alien race have an actual name or was that how they were known on every world they went to?
     
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  10. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Great point on how they would introduce themselves. I'm due for a rewatch and couldn't find a youtube clip of John addressing the media. A transcript did have the UN Secretary-General first using the term "Visitors" after leaving the shuttle, so I would guess the Visitors talk and let their to-be prey come up with the verbiage. "John" also later states "Our names would sound peculiar to you, so we, my fellow visitors and I, have chosen simple names from earth.", so that was the first real non-visual allusion* that something might not necessarily be right (apart from the commercials and promotions of the time that already spoiled it, but two 2-hour movies about picking dandelions together rarely makes for robust suspense and drama. :( ) The scene indirectly addresses the home planet's naming issue, too - humans might not say it right, but also hints at contempt of whom they're about to eat.

    But it's told so well, and bypasses any Visitor who might be taken aback if the human tries to pronounce their name in good faith but slips. (It also saves on the actors from having to do a dozen retakes because of consistency issues, or if nothing else bypassing the risk of any actors corpsing...)

    The transcript also mentioned their star system (Sirius, 8.7 light years away.) But not their actual planet, apart from it being the fourth from its sun. And that the humans are the first intelligent species they've encountered. If they found a planet of cows, they'd probably just eat them all and then moove on... I promise not to milk that joke anymore, it's too cheesy... well, I thought it was gouda but there you go...



    * something the movie is loaded with, via some first rate cinematography, which (if I recall correctly) was filmed in 4:3 but framed for 16:9 by the director -- so if it was cropped to 4:3 all the visual cues would remain intact, with the cut out portions being empty space that nobody would be focusing on. It's a nice touch that "The Final Battle" completely forgot about (the DVD release merrily wipes out the top and bottom fifth of the screen and sometimes details other than name credits got wiped out too. The blu-ray, which is a magnificent restoration, also kept the intended aspect ratio and is so much the better for it. Big kudos to the restoration teams used for "V". Hopefully the ill-fated 1985 series will be put out one day, but it's unlikely.)
     
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  11. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Amazon now has it available for purchase, albeit in streaming form only. I'm tempted, but after rewatching season 1 (which is where I saw season 3's newfound availability), it'll be a bit of a shock if they did take out the bulk of the comedic bits, many of which seemed very cleverly done.
     
  12. Richard S. Ta

    Richard S. Ta Commodore Commodore

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    The comedy slowly tapers off to a very low level through Seasons 2-3. In some ways it’s to the detriment of the show, in some ways not, but it is at least gradual.
     
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  13. FederationHistorian

    FederationHistorian Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Season 1 is 70/30 comedy.

    Season 2 is 50/50 comedy.

    Season 3 starts off 30/70 comedy, but works its way back to 50/50 comedy.
     
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  14. Richard S. Ta

    Richard S. Ta Commodore Commodore

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  15. shapeshifter

    shapeshifter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    As in, blinded me with. Now I got that song stuck in my head, and probably everyone that reads this. lol

    S3 was the bomb! Hard to believe they pumped that much into a final season, no plans to continue. Then again, Disney doesn't need a Trek style show.
     
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  16. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Well, somedays you can get rid of a bomb.
     
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  17. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    I rewatched season 1 over the last few weeks:

    * Old Wounds: 6/10. Decent series premiere. Some jokes fell flat, others were brilliant. Decent enough plot setup. Biggest point drops are for the scene where Gordon risks his life along with his shiny new captain's with a scene going on way too long regarding stupid flying stunt, and for how the time accelerator ignores how the tree can grow without sustenance, etc, but it's a decent thrill ride that makes the quibbles a little easier to roll with.

    * Command Performance: 6/10. Good setup, great subplot for Alara and Finn. Inspired loosely by "The Cage" or "sentient beings in a zoo", which is an old trope, it still has some moments of greatness. Especially that ending, which is as much out of the blue as it is hysterical.

    * About a Girl: 8/10. The Moclan society lets the audience think for themselves how such a situation could be put into place. With mixed results. Gordon wasn't as much dumb, but ignorant of various events being asked to him - and it's borderline amazing that wasn't fleshed out more. There are a few hints sprinkled throughout the story about the Moclans, and while it's true that fact can be stranger than fiction, it still seems a little contrived. Terrific courtroom scene and shrewdly done scene and homage to TOS's female writers by showing how they hid behind names that imply males instead of letting them be their own names and selves. I'd say just roll with the Moclans of the present. Especially as the Rudolph parallel feels authentic and genuinely alien. Possibly might be homage to "Galaxy Quest" but it's an old sci-fi trope that alien species and cultures won't see things like humans, so it's nice to see it taken to this level.

    * If the Stars Should Appear: 2/10. It's the weakest entry by far for this season, it's a little too reminiscent of TOS's "For the world is hollow and I have touched the sky"... the idea of a city in a spaceship isn't new and all TOS did was put them inside an asteroid anyway. A few set piece scenes elevate it, but it's not the best IMHO (YMMV).

    * Pria: 9.5/10 Very refreshing and takes some clever turns and twists. A lot of Orville uses Trek as influence, but it's not as noticeable here, and even if it was the ideas being bandied about still elevate it by using a new and healthy twist. Digging into Mercer's ability to trust after being cheated on is also a huge plot point, given just the right length of time to delve into (they didn't make it soppy and syrupy-maudlin), and from here you're wondering where that little subplot will go. The "What is comedy" subplot starts out okay, but is taken to a terrific new level based on what Isaac does - which is unexpected and definitely is described as "dark comedy". As with Pria herself, Isaac is unpredictable and that is truly refreshing, especially as he's the Spock/Data (Spata/Dock) trope? I can't get enough in rewatching this one... it's probably my all-time favorite of the show so far. I'm just glad that - spoiler alert - ye olde drill didn't cause the solid state box to explode and cripple the ship (but the plotting handles this well enough with the intent of Pria for the ship...)

    * Krill: 7.5/10. I rolled along with the conveniences with language and holographic projector to give it a chance. I did before with "Command Performance". It's not a bad episode as a result, and the teaser with Bortus is a must-see. A couple jokes were bad enough to get a point ding, but the shock value is worthy of mention this time as it, along with the direction they take, was unexpected. But the solution with the lights is oversimplified, and how do they know Krill technology so intricately as to aim its weapons to destroy the missile as well as changing the lights? Here's one for ya: Go into the kitchen and change the spectrum of the bulbs. Can't do it? There you go. It's limited by what the filament (tungsten, LED, egoist's self-opinion, etc) is capable of emitting. Not even the plant lights have a function to change which length of the spectrum to emit more light from, and given the nature and ecology of the Krill, are they really going to light up everything with the potential wavelength needed to fry themselves with? Nope. The story was capable of doing better. A similarly cheap "brush plot under rug quickly" routine happens in "Identity pt 2" as well, but that's another story... that said, the moral subplot was refreshingly complex and layered. That helped it a lot.

    * Majority Rule: 9/10. It's copping on TOS's "parallel Earth" routing and with near-mimeographed exposition to quickly get through the setup. That aside, the episode is truly fantastic as it doesn't go over the top, which I was fearful of... the episode would even double as a great episode of "Sliders", where parallel Earth development was par for the course and not a way to save on f/x costs like how TOS envisioned it.

    * Into the Fold: 9/10. A terrific suspense/horror piece that makes use of Isaac and Finn's family. The wit is impeccably done and it's so easy to roll along with events.

    * Cupid's Dagger: 8/10. Nice revisiting of Darulio. Given that Kelly was acting not of her own free will (so either by accident or horrible intent, Darulio is the only one at fault for their breakup), it opens the door for possible reconciliation... the setup and execution of his pheromones is brilliant, spread by touch, and the Claire/Yaphit scenes are uproariously funny. Especially as Yaphit is not from a dimorphic species, a rarity in sci-fi to begin with (nor are all species dimorphic in mammalian form, too.) The ending where peace is achieved is decent, but it's way too open for a sequel. Shame they didn't do one in season 2...

    * Firestorm: 9/10. Fantastic episode focusing on Alara and to a lesser extent LaMarr. I recall VOY had a clown, but that's the only major Trek reference and it's only when Trek references are so painfully blatant that it becomes annoying.

    * Mad Idolatry: 9/10. There's a bigger VOY plot point to this one but it doesn't detract and, indeed, improves on it greatly with little nuances and details throughout. Where they take the episode has its own beats and narratives and those sell themselves quite well.
     
  18. Gingerbread Demon

    Gingerbread Demon Stealer of all the cookies in time and space Premium Member

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    Season one of The Orville is great, but my favourites in no particular order are

    Mad Idolatry
    If The Stars Should Appear
    Firestorm
    Majority Rule
    About A Girl
    Pria

    I found season 2 a bit more entertaining.

    Have they ever mentioned what past history is in the Orville universe as in what was their version of first contact in their universe?
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2022 at 1:34 PM