"These Are the Voyages" as a 'true' series finale

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Enterprise' started by Damian, Jan 13, 2019.

  1. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    "These are the Voyages" seems to be one of the most hated episodes of Star Trek history, at least judging by the intense dislike, even hatred it engenders. Even Voyager's "Threshold" doesn't seem to fare as badly among fans (though it is close). I can sympathize, I dislike it myself and rather consider the Terra Prime episodes a proper series ending. I can watch TATV in a different light since I read the novels and they retold TATV in a different light (but that's a different topic for another day).

    I've read thread's about would it have been as bad had it been a middle season episode. Usually it seems that only raises it to slightly less hated, but it doesn't really fare much better that I can tell.

    But what about a different route. First remove TNG elements from it. Let's just take the Riker/Troi part of the story completely out.

    Next, let's assume now Enterprise had a normal 7 year run. They fought the Romulan War and maybe an episode or two before the end won the war, and now the Coalition is forming the Federation. Maybe add some dialogue about the war (it always mystified me that TATV as is never mentioned one word about the war, which apparently occurred prior to TATV).

    Would TATV, after a full 7 year show, and with the TNG elements removed, be better received under those circumstances?

    I'm sorry, I should have added a poll question but forgot (I don't think I can do it now). Oh, well. If anyone has any comments I'd be curious.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2019
  2. Tosk

    Tosk Vice Admiral Admiral

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    If you take the TNG elements out of the story, you're still left with a pretty mediocre tale. If you want to make TATV into something good, you'd have to rejig it to the point where it really isn't TATV any more.
     
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  3. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, that's sort of what I was wondering. Can TATV be salvaged taking out TNG elements and if it were after the war and the end of a 7 year run.

    My feeling is much the same though. You might retain the Archer speech preparation angle, but I didn't care for the Shran story angle too much and Trip's death and the way that was handled. So at this point I see maybe one or two minor story angles that can be saved but nothing significant IMO.
     
  4. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    There are many problems with the writing of the episode, only some of which are addressed in the first post.
     
  5. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, I don't disagree. I was just wondering if anyone thought there was anything salvageable about it. For me about the only thing salvageable might be the idea of Archer preparing for his speech. But that's a pretty minor plot point.
     
  6. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The ending montage is pretty salvagable. :)

    The idea of someone in the future experiencing life aboard the ship isn't without merit as a general concept...it just doesn't necessarily make much sense as something we want to watch.

    What might be more interesting, though at this point you'd be borrowing from "Living Witness" and the novels and you'd need more than an hour, would be the discovery that what people had accepted as history was inaccurate. Allow the ENT folks to reenact the accepted version of events but also what really happened.
     
  7. King Daniel Beyond

    King Daniel Beyond Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    You'd still have Trip's nonsensical death. Where were the MACOs and why was suicide the first thing he tried?

    I mean yeah, he lost his sister and daughter, his girlfriend dumped him... damn, imagine if the show ended on Trip actually doing it that way on purpose. Thar would have been dark.
     
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  8. HopefulRomantic

    HopefulRomantic hyperpolypyroferricist Moderator

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    It's an interesting challenge, to start with the current drek and transform it into something acceptable. But I agree that so much would need to be changed. It would be a massive overhaul - perhaps the only recognizable remainder might be the end montage.

    If the show has had its full 7 seasons, many storylines would have progressed - the Trip/T'Pol relationship, for one. Not derailed, but developed to its potential as a metaphor for the Earth/Vulcan alliance, and a setup for Sarek and Amanda in TOS.

    Archer preparing for his speech in the wake of victory in the Romulan War - and jeez, show the speech. Show us the diplomat, Kirk's hero, everything that Archer would have become in 3 more years and another war.

    And oh yeah, promotions for the crew, at least, c'mon.

    And yes, If you're still gonna kill off Trip - IF, since this is such a hackneyed story device, a lead character dying at the end, I hate it - it would need to be a good death. Dying for a noble reason, not dying stupidly. Storywise, it would make more sense for Trip to die in the Romulan War, like Hayes and Degra died in the close of the Xindi War - but even then, it would feel like a retread of Hayes dying, so I wouldn't do it for that very reason.

    Hmm, I would consider setting up a death eerily parallel to whatever killed Trip in the E2 universe. A hero's death of course. And the finale could do proper honor to him, not "Waaah, these seats suck!" Hopefully something life-affirming and optimistic, classic Trek. Remember how Archer starts out so idealistic and hopeful, and just keeps getting kicked in the teeth (sometimes literally) by cruel reality? Might be sweet if ENT ended in that hopeful place, and Archer has come full circle.

    I also love DonIago's idea that historians got it all wrong and someone looks into it, and we watch them discover, in flashbacks, how it really went down. And maybe Trip didn't die at all. Maybe not the spy storyline, tho, that was pretty left-field.

    Just my .02 in the middle of the night. Fun to brainstorm, but quite a project to fix! :)
     
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  9. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The lack of character evolution between the last "real" episode of ENT and TATV, supposedly set in the future of the series, is one of the biggest things that would need to be addressed IMO.

    I can deal with Trip getting a non-heroic death...that happens, and I don't believe someone should always get a meaningful death just by virtue of being a senior officer/in the opening credits...but the way it was shown seemed so impulsive and stupid on Trip's part.
     
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  10. Tosk

    Tosk Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Hey now, c'mon...they're wearing nametags now! That's character evolution, innit? ;)
     
  11. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It does mean they're no longer entirely expendable I suppose... :p
     
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  12. Seven of Five

    Seven of Five Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The lack of any sort of character development between the penultimate episode and the finale is a real bugbear. Apparently, they've just stayed in stasis in their relationships, rank, and their posting to Enterprise for years, with some minor cosmetic changes to the ship and uniforms to show the passage of time! :wtf:

    Trip's death was handled in a very clumsy way. If they really did want to kill him in a sudden shocking way, then fine. Just don't make Trip seem like a total idiot when he does it. As it stands, his final lines may as well be, "Right, time to die now. Bye-sies!" Not having a heroic death is fine, but how it's handled was just bodged.

    The Riker/Troi holodeck scenes are decent, but the idea that they're back on the Enterprise D is nonsense. That they're talking about the events that happened in the past like it's some sort of 'Pegasus' moment for Trip like it was for Riker, is equally nonsense, and I find it all distracting. I spend the Riker/Troi scenes thinking, "This really doesn't fit into anything," rather than paying attention to nostalgia.

    If (and that's a big if) Riker/Troi scenes need to be in the episode, then just set them on the Titan, after Nemesis. Maybe well after Nemesis? Ditch the stupid Pegasus angle as well. Maybe make it some sort of anniversary to do with the whole ENT mission, or even the end of the Romulan War?

    After all of the effort Trip went to by dying, the least they could have done was show Archer's kick ass speech.

    The last bit with the fanfares and the ships was about the only part they got right. :techman:

    And isn't it nice to talk (again) about final episodes from shows long ago departed from out screens. ENT finishing in 2005 means it's been 14 years this time? Al my TATV frustrations come flooding back like it was yesterday.:angel:
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2019
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  13. Delta Vega

    Delta Vega Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    There is nothing remotely saveable about TATV
    Its hated for many reasons
    Trip's needless and stupid death being one of the chief pisstakes
    Riker and Troi, geez
    Crew in apparent stasis over six years
    Complete distruction of all the characters in the Chef scenes, all of them acting OUT of character
    Why not at least show Archers big speech ?
    No, its a disaster and its justifiably hated
     
  14. Tosk

    Tosk Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It's kind of funny really, that an episode that was specifically crafted to be "a valentine to the fans" could get so many things so wrong. You think there'd be more parts of it that were accidentally good, but...
     
  15. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, a lot of those points make sense. And it probably would be a much different episode if Enterprise was a full series and the Romulan War just occurred (which it had but was inexplicably ignored).

    I think the stasis metaphor is probably spot on. We see the crew in TATV, 6 years later is it. There are very few indications life went on after Terra Prime, though we know it would have had to. The only history noted was Shran's disappearance, and a bit of his backstory, but almost nothing on any other character.

    And I could never get past the lack of any mention that they just ended a major war, one that dwarfed the Xindi incident.

    Trip's stupid death is another. Like others, had he died a hero, or even just a tragic accident in engineering (not everyone dies a hero's death). But it was so out of character. I can see him giving his life up for his captain. That's not my issue. It's that it wasn't at that point yet. He would have given Archer a chance to get them out if it (it almost seem Archer was hatching something that Trip cut short). It was so ham handed.

    And TNG elements get a lot of flak. Perhaps that angle would have been improved using some other background story, a story that lacked a firm resolution. I never felt anything was missing from Pegasus. It felt like it was a closed story to me--and I never once wondered why Riker told Picard about it--you knew that was always going to happen, his first loyalty was to Starfleet, even if it got him imprisoned, and he would always choose loyalty to Picard over the admiral--so none of that was in question. I could never figure out why they used that.

    I was trying to imagine it though in terms of a true ending after 7 years, and making it a true Enterprise episode and not holodeck creation. And probably that alone would have led to a total different episode.

    And yeah, I would have loved to have seen the speech myself. He made a nice speech at the end of Terra Prime and I guess they would have felt it was duplicating that being the next episode. But after 3 more years of episodes that obviously would be a different situation. But I couldn't believe it. We're ready to watch the speech, he steps up to the dais, then 'end program'. Dammit Riker.
     
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  16. Delta Vega

    Delta Vega Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Never have the words "End program" been so clinical
     
  17. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    If there had to be "TNG" elements in an ENT story, than I would have preferred a two-part episode where the "present" crew needs to learn more about something that occurred in the past and for some reason a holographic recreation is required. Whether or not this would tie-in with my earlier idea about history being inaccurate would depend on the specifics, though if it was revealed that the ENT crew lied about something but for compellingly good reason, that could have potential.

    Using "Pegasus" as the catalyst for the simulation continues to strike me as...dubious.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2019
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  18. Yanks

    Yanks Commodore Commodore

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    A stab in the heart.

    It works if you let it but you kind of have to put your trek blinders on.

    The true sin is not closing Enterprise with an appropriate 2-parter.... or more appropriately closing trek on TV (at the time).
     
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  19. Dukhat

    Dukhat Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Frakes and Sirtis would unquestionably be in the episode, because that's what Berman and Braga wanted. But if you're going to have them in the finale episode, then they need to remain in the background, because the focus needs to be on the main cast, not the guest stars. That's where B&B fucked up. They wanted another episode of TNG rather than a final episode of ENT, and that was just the wrong way to go.

    In the past I've mentioned how I would have done TATV, so I'll mention it again. The first scene would be Riker and Troi on the Titan post-Nemesis, in orbit of Romulus as a peace envoy. This is when they discover the NX-01's flight recorder/black box/whatever on Romulus, and everyone sits down a la "The Menagerie" and watches the events of the ship's final days. Then the 22nd century scenes take over until the end of the episode, where Riker, Troi and the Romulans are content to learn something about the NX-01 crew that they never knew before.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2019
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  20. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Eh. I mean, Riker being able to "directly interact" with the ENT crew was more compelling to me than watching them on tv would have been.