Discussion in 'Star Trek: Enterprise' started by where'sSaavik?, Aug 29, 2003.
I don't see how. You seem to think the bloody thing is perfect as it is - and that ain't working.
Yes, S...uh, Xenexian. Why don't you go look up the ratings?
This stuff is measurable -- there are facts, which it's not difficult to find. Do a little research, and don't start with me again.
Well, in DS9's last two years it was averaging between 4 to 4.5 million viewers, and Voyager averaged a little more than five million a week in its last two seasons. They were higher-rated than "Enterprise", but had fallen tremendously from the TNG ratings or the ratings that either spinoff commanded in their first few weeks on the air.
Well, an awful lot of fans think the same thing -- take a number and get in line. The problem, of course, is that there are many different and conflicting ideas about what ought to be done. The fact that there's widespread dissatisfaction expressed with "Enterprise" gives some folks the misleading notion that there's something like consensus on what Trek ought to be instead. A cursory reading just of TrekBBS forums devoted to Trek beyond "Enterprise" puts the lie to that pretty quickly.
The answer to the first question is: not much, and that's what will drive a real departure from the past (in treatment, if not premise) in whatever -- if anything -- is produced after "Enterprise".
The answer to the second question, unfortunately, is "Yep, a whole lot more upset". One simply has to peruse sites maintained by fans of the original "Battlestar Galactica" to get a little taste of what Trek fandom could be like in the face of an explicit reworking of the property. However, real commercial failure of the Franchise would render the influence of the small remaining core fanbase negligible.
In DS9's last season it averaged 4.4 million households. They don't report number of viewers for syndicated shows regularly. But with 4.4 million households, the viewers numbers were surely above 6.5 million (the final DS9 episode was seen by 8.3 million people in 5.4 million households). VOY & ENT ratings numbers are partial since the weekend repeats are not included. But with the end of DS9, VOY viewers numbers remained steady (and it's demographics actually improved) in its final 2 seasons.
There is no doubt that these shows had major drops in ratings and that the ratings were way below TNG. But that was not my point. Even in their final seasons they were getting respectable numbers (current syndicated leaders like Andromeda or SG1 get half the DS9 ratings). They were still performing well in demographics ratings, they still had high ad rates, they were still profitable. These were not low rated shows that somehow magically managed to stay on the air for 7 years. Buffy had lower ratings than DS9 or VOY and it ran 7 years. DS9 & VOY lasted 7 years because they still had respectable ratings despite the major declines, and could have gone even beyond 7 years if Paramount desired it.
Timothy Verheecke's pages show DS9 to have lost 73% of its beginning audience by the end of its run, and lists a late DS9 episode ("The Dogs Of War") as having an "audience" of 3,692,000. What does he mean by that?
DS9 definitely lost a lot of viewers, there is no doubt about that. 73% is probably right.
The 3,692,000 audience for that episode is the number of households. During DS9's last season each rating point represented 994,000 households, so a rating of 3.7 translates to around 3.7 million households. The total viewers numbers for syndicated shows are seldom reported, I have only seen it for a couple of DS9 episodes. Based on what I have seen, the ratio for Trek shows is around 1.5 viewer per household, so you can get a rough estimate of the number of viewers based on that.
The Trekkess speaks the Truth!
To summarize...and my own comments...
10. It Makes Me Feel Guilty Watching Smallville...
I really can't comment on this since I don't watch it (S not E!)... However, an interesting parallel is how I'm actually enjoying watching the 20 year old reruns of the old Incredible Hulk series on the SciFi Channel...more so than Enterprise episodes! B&B could learn a thing or two about character development, continuity, and generally how to write linear, well-paced episodes from a series even like that one!
9. The Premise... I don't think that TPTB did it to recapture TOS in any way, shape, or form... I think they did it so they could REWRITE TOS in their own image, and further to toss-out TOS when the time is right... (B&B's hatred of TOS is nothing new!)... It was also new territory to screwup! Another factor in its creation was all these Prequel-style movies and shows which bloomed at the same time... We had Lucas doing SW Episodes I and II... We had Smallville doing a prequel Superman... And there are others which slip my mind at the moment...
8. The fact that after they picked this crappy premise, they refuse to even exploit it...
It's ALL in the writing... Ultimately this is what ALL series come down to... Unfortunately few can see it, and the trend it to plaster over bad writing with lots and lots of special effects work and the latest and greatest trend called See-Gee-Eye... In the case of Trek, it's like a big treasure chest: they figure that the fewer writers and workers in general, the fewer ways to split the loot... So B&B aren't only the creators but Also serving as Writers througout the series, among filling other roles! One reason that TOS worked because GR wasn't against hiring Real Life, Established, SF authors...
7. Listening to Berman and Braga Bullshit...
They're really no different than politicians... Same attitude... Keeping shelling out the BS and sooner or later the crowds will believe them... At least in theory! Yeah, I hate it too, but it's something I tend to ignore much like other big mouths speaking of their own "projects" in movieland...
6. The poor acting...
It's not that bad... Again, it's the petty material they have to work with, I believe... The characters are so poorly developed and have so few lines that it's equated with bad acting... I loved Scott Bakula on Quantum Leap... After that series I thought that he'd make a terrific starship captain (NOT on E, you understand! But perhaps a post-V/TNG series)... He's lousy on E because he's given so little dialogue (and I think his stuck-up, wooden performance may be a part of the role!)... I kid people not when I say that he's had more dialogue in just ONE episode of QL compared to the sum total of lines he's had in a single season of E!
5. The Obsessions with Cheap Stunts and Sex...
This is the dumbing-down of Trek, and their way of making it acceptable to the masses, and in particular the moronic masses who watch all the other trash on UPN! They are trying to cater to the "fanboy" crowd who Want to see Borg, Ferengi, and other "established" aliens--even if it's at the expense of continuity and believability... This is why we've got Klingons on this series, when they shouldn't show up for something like half a century... AND why NX-01 looks like a spiffy 24th Century ship!
4. The Lack of Good Character Development...
See above: it's the writers, who can't write... They don't know WHAT they're doing... Just like with V: they come up with a simple premise but have No Idea where to take it, how to play it, nor what to do with the characters... They play it all be ear...at the expense of the series... TOS had excellent character development from the get go... It was character driven... E's FX-driven, with the characters just "along for the ride"!
3. The Overall Lack of Originality...
That's the #1 problem in a nutshell... Originality would solve most problems and even help us gloss over continuity and other violations... Again: bad writing... E's without question, THE worst written Trek series in Trek history... TAS was heavily criticized but its writers could write warp coils around V's "writers"... Heck, even Voyager had better writing... We're seeing straightforward ripoffs of movies like "Enemy Mine" and they're as predictable as can be...
But MY own #1 problem is How Poorly they envisioned this 2150 era, it's backhistory, and technology... Lack of originality meaning that they've got almost everything they had in the 24th Century, just under a different name... Polarized hull plating instead of deflector shields being one example... Even the bridge looks like a redressing of the Voyager's bridge. albeit with different control panels... The same rank pip system... One episode showed us a voice-activated food-slot on NX-01 (or would that be just a drink dispenser?)... The ENTERPRISE'S DESIGN IS A RIPOFF OF THE AKIRA CLASS (so much for warp dynamics evolving!)... And then the whole Concept of the Vulcans holding back technology and only now allowing humans to venture forth into deep space is a CROCK OF CRAP... These are Evil Vulcans we're dealing with on E--and they don't even have the yellow-green complexion of Spock, much less compassion and a grasp of Surak's philosophy...
They made a prequel to TOS WITHOUT WATCHING TOS! Much less "The Cage"... Phase Pistols later become Laser Pistols which later become Phaser Pistols... RIIIGHT...
Those 3 words again I keep bringing up: THEY DON'T CARE!
E is, for all intents and purposes, a Prequel to TNG--that is, it sits as though that intervening years between E and TNG Never Happened... As though TOS never had been, and we're being "re-educated" to accept this series as a replacement...
2. The Death of the Franchise...
I'm a bit more optimistic here... I look at E as a rotting appendage which can, hopefully, be amputated and allow the rest of the body to survive, live long, and prosper...
I just hope E has a Quick Death, so we can just Move On quicker... This series is just best Forgotten, just as Battlestar Galactica fans have dismissed Galactica: 1980 (and how they'll dismiss the SciFi Channel's new version!)...
And my #1 Reason for Hating Enterprise:
The Effect it has on this Forum and the BBS...
This really isn't anything new, but E certainly pushed it over the threshold... What Really started the Hate was a guy named Michael Okuda and Pocket Books when the infamous C word (CANON!) entered Fandom's vocabulary...
So where'sSaavik? is a chick now?
I think he/she needs to clear up more than just his/her opinion of "Enterprise."
Just yours, James. Just yours.
Where did you get the idea that I think Enterprise is perfect. I like the show but I have made my fair share of threads wishing they had did several things diffenently, my most recent one was for a different design for the ship.
Also since you like bringing it up all the time, look throughout this thread and you will see people's first complaints about the show are the premise, B & B and continuity errors. Stories and acting come in as an after thought. So I hope this will put an end to you constantly saying I am wrong about the main reasons most dislike the show.
So you think the only thing good about DS9 was Garak and Dukat?
I think the main problem with the Trek fandom is that they overestimate their size and importance. TNG was not a big hit because it popular with the fans but because it was popular with the mainstream. Most fans place it as #3 or #4 on their list of the best Trek series. That tells me that what the general public likes and what the fans like are two different things.
I loved season one of Enterprise. Season two was very disappointing! But I have renewed hope for season three.
But if it is as drab as season two then this will be the end of Enterprise.
Number one reason I love Enterprise: The characters.
Number one reason I hate Enterprise: Their hands are tied, they can't do this or that because all the old school Trekies will be upset.
Well maybe the number one reason I hate Enterprise is the terrible writing last season!
But I still have hope for Enterprise. Unlike season one last season I was bored and had a hard time watching each episode once. Season one with the exception of one episode I watched Enterpriase at least three times.
But the final episode gave me hope that Enterprise will improve this season. I once again look forward to the season starting.
Yes it is a long line with people who would like to take over Trek being with professionals like Wolfe and Moore and ending with people like me. The should actually say something about the Beebs cause are countless people waiting to take their jobs.
It is also true that their is a misconception, especially here on this board, that their is this magical formula that will create a show that all Star Trek fans will love. Just from what I have seen in this thread so far we have
2. Star Fleet Academy
3. Enterprise just the way it is
4. 25th century show
5. TOS remake
Now out of these ideas which is the one that all fans would love?
Tryng to please everyone is the wrong answer. It always has been.
"Enterprise" is an attempt to please everyone, and it is a disastrous attempt at that.
Find a way to tell compelling stories that will bring people back week after week, and generate a buzz that will make people want to tell their friends about the show.
In order to do this, TPTB must be willing to sacrifice a large segment of the fanbase. It is impossible to please everyone.
However, taking a firm position, finding a solid premise, and remaining true to that premise, will generate a larger audience than will trying to make a bland applesauce that purports to have something for everyone in it.
Take a stand. Take some chances. Piss some people off, but in an intelligent way, not a sloppy one. Kiss a segment of your audience goodbye, and do so unapologetically. Give us some tough love. Show us some inspiring and thoughtful adventures, and let us know that some people are just not going to like it.
If we are given amazing stories and interesting characters, we will be bending over backwards to make the continuity fit, no matter how difficult the chore. If we can't make it fit, we won't care, because the stories will simply be too good to ignore.
Berman and Braga are not capable of making this work. We've seen their work, and it is tired and uninspired. The life experiences that these two draw upon to tell stories make me question whether they have ever been outside the house, and if they have ever interacted with other human beings.
New writers are required. Start from scratch.
Will everyone love this new show? No.
Too bad. There is no such thing as a show that everyone loves.
What we need is a show that both generates good ratings and makes a reasonable amount of people feel good about watching Star Trek again. We aren't asking for perfection. But "Enterprise" is so far from perfection that it needs to be either upgraded or put down. Immediately.
You make some very good points. What people write in one thread doesn't quite equate to all the complaints in fandom, but I see your logic.
Yep, pretty much that's it.
I agree with the points you make, except Enterprise not being good, that is why I am in favor of a reboot. If you make good stories then the kind of fans you want will stay and the ones that leave were just complainers anyway that would cause you nothing but trouble. They should have done this with Enterprise but they didn't so now it will take about 10-15 years to get a reboot done.
This all boils down to whether people want to be an artist or a business person. Artists normally starve especially in TV where it is all about ratings and money. A friend of mine told me that he would make any changes to a script he wrote if it meant it would get sold. He also said he wouldn't care if it was rewritten completely or not. This blew my mind cause I would have a heart attack if my work was completely rewritten and would not make changes just so it would be sold. That is the difference between an artist and a person out for money.
I keep hearing how Enterprise should be like Farscape, Firefly, or Buffy. Why would you want to make Enterprise like a show that it is more popular than? If you were going to make it like something you would make it like 24 or the Shield which are a combination of action and drama, and they get better ratings.
Star Trek just needs to take a chance which we all know they are not.
I think any argument you make about Show X being "more popular" than Show Y is a specious one. There are simply too many ways to spin the numbers.
I loved Buffy and Farscape and Star Trek, but I wouldn't want "Enterprise" to be re-made into any of those shows. What would be the point?
The reason I loved those shows is that they turned television on its ears, each in its own way. They showed us things that we had never seen done before.
"Enterprise" needs to find its own way. It needs to be "new and different" -- literally, not in a Berman-and-Braga-talking-out-of-both-sides-of-their-mouth-bullshit-sort of way.
It can't be done, Cogley! Star Trek has simply been around for too long.
In just the last few years, we have seen some very creative television programs. Shows like The X-Files, Alias, 24, The Sopranos, Six Feet Under, Farscape, Lexx, South Park, Buffy, Angel, Firefly, Stargate, Smallville, and I could go on and on.
With all of the thousands of shows that have come and gone over the decades, some very talented people are still coming up with some fantastic ways to tell stories.
It's happening right now, on almost every channel.
The argument that Trek is just too tired is nonsense.
This Trek is too tired. These people that have been bringing us this Trek are just too tired. This formula (or should I say lack thereof) for delivering this Trek is too tired.
As a Star Trek fan, I'm not tired at all. I can watch re-runs of a show that is almost forty years old, and I can be just as inspired and excited by it as I was when I was young.
I'm tired of dull Trek. Of uninspired Trek. Of hollow Trek.
I'm desperate for good Trek. Give it to me and I'll watch it every week. Every day. Every hour!
I'll buy its products. I'll sing its praises. I'll write giddy reviews about it.
I'm not tired one bit!
And the fact that so many of us have clung to the franchise for so long, even when it makes many of us miserable, means that we, too, believe that the Trek concept still has the chance for new life.
Trek is not over. Not by a long shot. But this meandering tangent it has taken needs to end, and the sooner the better.
The problem with the Star Trek franchise is that, somewhere along the way, it decided to take the path most traveled by. And that has made all the difference.
Thing is Sam that none of the shows you mentioned are 40 years old with a giant backstory. Smallville has a longer backstory but the difference is that Superman has been reinvented for each generation, which has keep it popular with the population comes everyone has a version they can relate to. Star Trek refuses to do this. Instead if seems fans want it to go on for another 40 years just like it is now. I mean Trek never grows. They refused to have Picard grow, because only a Starfleet captain can make a difference in the universe. I might be crazy but I think a Fleet Admiral can do a lot more. Riker should have taken over the Enterprise before TNG ended, but we never saw that and we never will. The reason Trek is bogged down is because TPTB and the fans refuse to change anything really. All parties refuse to let go of the Trek history and just start trying to do something different.
Separate names with a comma.