Top Ten Reasons I Hate Enterprise

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Enterprise' started by where'sSaavik?, Aug 29, 2003.

  1. Samuel T. Cogley

    Samuel T. Cogley Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Hold still, Jim.


    Irrelevant.

    There are ways to tell isolated stories in a manner that the established Trek backstory becomes unimportant.

    "Voyager" was a perfect example of this. They took a Starfleet ship and cut it off (originally) from everything we knew or cared about. They had a clean slate. They could have done anything they wanted to with it.

    Instead, they fell back on the same tired old concepts because they couldn't bring anything new to the table.

    Deep Space Nine brought a lot of new things to the Star Trek table (specifically, the ideas of J. Michael Straczynski). You can love or hate the show, but you can't deny that it tried a lot of things that had never been done on Star Trek before.

    The relevance of backstory is only as big or as small as you allow it to be. You can treat it as a source of ideas, and milk it to death, or you can be afraid of it and run away.

    The franchise has been running away from the backstory of Star Trek for years now, and the concepts of Star Trek along with it. The only thing they are truly afraid to let go of is the profitable "Star Trek" brand name.
     
  2. reno floyd

    reno floyd Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I agree with everything here - apart from the loopy bit about blaming the fans.

    Perhaps if they actually did any of the stuff you mentioned (and it's similar to stuff I've mentioned and others have suggested in the past) it would give the fans something to react to. Something new to comprehend and absorb. But they don't even want to take the risk, for the most idiotic and purile of reasons.

    It's not the fans who don't want things to change, it's TPTB because they're concerned with pushing an image and a product.

    Read this BBS and others from top to bottom - what is it the vast majority of fans are clamoring for? Change! There's disagreements over what the change should be, but that's to be expected when the people in charge dither over making any kind of decision and have no passion drive or vision, and refuse to nail their colors to the mast and say this is what the show is.
     
  3. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Actually, if you read this BBS from top to bottom, the majority -- maybe not so vast -- are always calling for return to some favorite past variety of macaroni-and-cheese. The Voyager folks want a "Voyager" movie, the TOS folks want Kirk back or they want a Sulu series or they just want Trek to be like TOS was, the Niners want Behr and Moore and company to return from Avalon and produce DS9 II. And a significant number of them analyze the value of everything by whether or not its reconcilable in the most literal sense with every previous Trek detail that they can remember.

    All of these people have to be disappointed to a greater or lesser degree, as Sam has suggested, in order for this dinosaur to get up again.
     
  4. reno floyd

    reno floyd Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^^ To my mind you're listing off symptoms, not the cause.

    You give people something truely different, and they have a hard time making comparisons. They have to just like it on its own terms or walk away.

    You do what B&B keep doing, and make it superficially different, but inherently the same, and you invite comparison and failure. You can't beat a notion, want or desire. It's just not possible. The smart thing is to not give the audience the option in the first place.
     
  5. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Well, maybe. Really, I'm just observing behavior. :)

    I'm always all for kicking over the board. Dave Bischoff said to me once (around 1980-81, I think) "Yeah, you're a trekkie but you're a perverse trekkie -- you don't like the characters and you want to kill them off and change everything."
     
  6. reno floyd

    reno floyd Vice Admiral Admiral

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    They'll never keep me down.
  7. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah, well at the time I think we were talking about why ST:TMP was so bad -- I thought that Trek would have been in better shape if they'd shoved Kirk into that lightshow with the bald chick and had him "ascend". I had this idea that you could probably do it as a tv series again instead of expensive movies if you got new people to play the parts. :lol:
     
  8. reno floyd

    reno floyd Vice Admiral Admiral

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    :D

    I'm kinda glad he didn't step into the light show. It looked like a Van de Graf electrostatic generator from my old grammar school physics classes. His hair would have stood on end, then sailed up the light column without him.
     
  9. John Sullivan

    John Sullivan Commodore Commodore

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    Interesting post (and all quite valid, in my opinion).

    When I left California to move to Florida in the summer of 2001, I had kept in touch with many in the business at many levels, even meeting many of them here or there in places like Vail or Aspen.

    Only when I went back to Hollywood and the greater L.A. area over the last few weeks was I really made aware of just how much the entire place had changed since I left California. It's not just Enterprise - it's the whole industry that has become a self-absorbed, disconnected-from-reality train wreck.

    "Hollywood" is really an inaccurate term. While the new Kodak Theater is quite impressive and a much-needed boom to the struggling tourism industry in those parts, Paramount Pictures is really the only big studio left in "Hollywood." CBS sort of is, but that's about it. Oh, there are Raleigh, Old Gower, and a few others who continue to exist in run-down old World War I buildings, Universal, WB, Disney, and the others are up over the hill in and around Burbank. The point being that the film business in "Hollywood" is rather diverse and spread out, abandoning the "Hollywood" model and moving to anywhere, U.S.A. - or to Canada.

    To call Hollywood a run-down wreck with no future would be a charitable word. Since 9-11, there are now long waits (20 minutes - 2 hours) to get into the gate to park the car and go to work, and that's if your name is Rick Berman. Best bet would be to ride the bus and walk in through the gate with the badge. I guess they think that some nutcase would actually target this group of fruitcakes inside these buildings for the symbolic value Hollywood seems to have in America. Given the success of tabloids and people who seem to care about the lives of celebrities, perhaps they have a point. Although it is true that a celebrity is just a normal person who pays a lot of money to an agent.

    So, the people are already disconnected enough from reality and America at large just by being where they are. They are stressed before they even get to work, and then wonder why whatever they do ends up so poorly recieved by the rest of America with those ratings boxes.

    They write stories from within, using only the experiences of living in greater Los Angeles as the springboard for their inspiration.

    Back when "Hollywood" was a vibrant booming industry, which it is not now, there was an influx of money and ideas from the outside world.

    I can go on forever, but the problems aren't limited to "Enterprise." The whole industry is in decline, in short because they can no longer find a way to connect to those people who go to movies or watch television.

    Another thing I noticed while in my $175 a night hotel room was that all of the people who make Enterprise see a crystal clear picture with crisp sound. They don't have a clue that somewhere along the transmission lines to the outlying UPN stations, or by incorrect settings at those stations' translators, the rest of us are seeing a technically crappy show.

    But where'sSaavik, don't despair. The TREK BBS is still vibrant and fresh, and alive, probably because so many of its people have a clue about what those of us out here in the real world would like to see. It is not uncommon for me to have Enterprise on in the background, watching none of it (when sound problems don't make listening impossible) while diverting most of my attention to other things, such as the TREK BBS. Once the team at Enterprise find how huge the internet is, hopefully they'll find a way to make money off it, because truth is, everyone tells me that UPN is losing its ass with Enterprise.
     
  10. Volpone

    Volpone Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Dennis, I think you're right, to a degree, but I think Reno is more right. He talks to this pretty well below, but I wanted to jump in with my 2 cents as well.

    Yes, all the Trekkies have their own idea of what they want in a Trek series, and yes, if you pick a direction and "boldly go where no ['Trek] has gone before," you will annoy a lot of the fans. But if you stick to this direction (with minor course corrections) and focus on going where you want in style, the fans will come back, along with the general public.

    When TNG came out, I was very disappointed with it. I thought the ship looked stupid, the uniforms looked cheap, a Klingon on the crew was a cheap ploy, and when you added Data, you got TWO misfit Spock wannabes for the price of one. But y'know what? They did some interesting things with Worf and Data. They refined Picard from the cold, aloof cardboard character he started out as. They reworked the uniforms and, because they were giving me good, interesting stories, I didn't mind the way the ship looked.

    Heck, maybe THAT'S why it takes the mythical 3 years for 'Trek to get good--the audience has to adjust to the new product, while they adjust the product to the audiences. I don't know. But the bottom line is that TPTB have made enough stupid little gaffes and completely failed to understand why the series is floundering--the whole Xindi concept confirms this, in my book--and I haven't been able to get by them. If they could figure out the characters, and make them behave in a manner consistent to the way they've been developed, rather than making them do whatever is required to shoehorn the latest gimmick or plot device down our throats, I'd probably be very unhappy this fall. I'd have to decide if I was going to watch "Smallville" or "Enterprise." As it is, it's not a problem.
     
  11. John Sullivan

    John Sullivan Commodore Commodore

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    ^ Of course, all comments about Enterprise are relegated to the first two seasons. I, for one, hated the first 2 years of ST-TNG, although I did enjoy some epiosides that were produced under the general rule of disaster. I loved Seasons 3 & 4, and the last few seasons were indications of a show on a serious downhill slide, maybe because DS-9 was being produced at the same time.

    Now, with only one show in production, I have only two words for B&B: Surprise me.

    Let's see a repeat of ST-TNG where the show really got its start in Season Three. My mind is open to the possibility that they are actually making good enough TV to be called memorable Trek. But, as I've also said, I believe this is the show's last season, if it is connected to the existence of UPN - and I don't think there's much of a chance UPN will survive another year. And, as I've also said, if this season IS flawed and not a repeat of ST-TNG Season Three, the time to bitch about it was in July, not on September 10th, as all of the flaws and mistakes are already in the can just waiting to be aired - if they exist.
     
  12. C.E. Evans

    C.E. Evans Admiral Admiral

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    I simply hate prequels.

    'Nuff said...
    :borg:
     
  13. ecky

    ecky Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    DS9's biggest problem was it being too heavily arc-based. in the last few seasons if you missed an ep you had to pretty much give up on the series as otherwise you were scratching your head about wht the hell was going on.

    this happened to me and took much downloading to get up to speed and reduce the head scratching.

    in TNG you missed an ep then you could safely tune into the next one knowing that the ep would only have had a 45 minute run upto where it is and not another 6 episodes.

    it was a pity since DS9 had some the best writing and characters ever seen in the franchise, and had it been more loosely arc based and hence casual-viewer friendly, it possibly would've been the next movie franchise.

    VOY and ENT on the other hand have no such reasons for their audience share loss, since like TNG you could happily miss and ep or two and know where you are.
     
  14. ecky

    ecky Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    i liked plenty about DS9, they just didnt make the most of the series. it was one of treks high points, and displayed some great character development, it was just they seemed to have this big armageddon story and focussed on that more than they should.

    not necessarily, take a look at how badly recieved NEM was, the fans panned it and the general public took notice. if the fans hate this, i'm sure as shit not gonna like it was one of the views i heard.

    so ignoring the fans is a big old negative PR campaign and should be regarded as a no-no. doesnt mean you shouldn't piss them off, just that its a battle that needs to be chosen wisely.

    as for the size of the fandom, well the core fandom isnt that large, but you do have a lot of 'casual' fans who'll tune in, only not religiously. problem is they associate trek primarily with kirk and spock, secondly with picard and have little or no interest in post-TNG trek.

    you can please both the fans and general public, going back to my cake analogy, the fans want a good cake while the general public want a good topping. nothing stopping them having both if TPTB gave equal regard to both.
     
  15. The Poisoned Elf

    The Poisoned Elf Commander Red Shirt

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    Well that´s the meaning of arcs. Developing a story further within itself. Otherwise it would be quite pointless if you only have shows like TNG. Aliens of the week. A lot of action and drama in one episode. All forgotten next week. Sounds quite dull to me. Too obvious. TNG-obvious. Anyway, don´t you have VCRs in Manchester? ;)
     
  16. ecky

    ecky Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    :lol: yup, just dont always remember to set it!

    it wasnt the arc that was the problem, it was the arc was too heavy.

    DS9 would happily build up over a set of 6 eps, and anyone coming in was just overwhelmed with what had gone on and give up watching it. they really needed to break it up more.
     
  17. Volpone

    Volpone Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    My number one problem with ENT is the production. From allowing sloppy writing--falling back on Borg and Ferengi ,weak, inconsistent character development, and deus ex mechina solutions--to failing to use dramatic incidental music, to misuse of SFX and technobabble, the producers just don't seem to get it.

    Look at the "HMS Bounty" going to warp as she slingshots around the Sun in ST:IV. By Warp 3 there is a noticable whine to the engines, and by Warp 4, crap is vibrating off of consoles. Sulu has to shout to be heard as he ticks off the speed increase--all very dramatic and conveying a real sense of the danger of the situation. Now look at Enterprise as she goes to warp. Does anything happen, 'cause I sure haven't noticed. She pretty much just seems to sit there. Heck, even THE Enterprise, KIRK'S Enterprise made that characteristic whining noise as she went to higher and higher warps. Plus the neat, distinctive computer/scanner noise of the bridge. All very simple, cheap effects that add as much to the show as any expensive CGI effect.

    Now, on to technobabble. As is so often the case, TPTB have managed to grasp the problem while totally missing the point. Technobabble as the plot solution is a bad thing. Technobabble for atmosphere is a good thing. Yes, if you solve the problem of an IR Shift in the sun of a system that is killing off a planet's life by re-modulating the navigational deflector you are abusing technobabble, however if you use it in the background it is good. Here's some of the beginning of "... Buckaroo Banzai ..." as they prepare to launch the jet car:
    "HB88, this is Control. Driver's door check secure."
    "Control, this is HB88, commander's voice check, over." "Roger, HB88, read you two two, out."
    "Control, HB88, event timer started, over."
    "HB88, this is Control. APU start is go. You are on your onboard computer, over."
    "Roger, I copy."
    "Altimeter set, cross-check. Compasses, cross-check. Reserve brake system two, ah, closed and guarded. Gear handle - down. Engine start levers - free, closed, and off.
    Number four electric hydraulic pump and press - on, and checked. Parking brake - set, and press checked.
    Radios, radar, and transponder - set, and standby.
    ..."

    While that scene goes on far longer than is practical every time NX-01 goes to Warp, it does give a good idea of how technobabble, combined with good editing can build a scene. I mean, if instead of having: "Lay in a course for Verindi 3." "Course laid in, sir." we got "Entering course. Factoring gravometric fields. Scanning for subspace anomalies and uploading to the helm. Course laid in, sir." doesn't that give more of a sense that they're not just tooling around the galaxy? And, if, once in awhile, while doing cross-checks before going to warp, they had a problem with the Bussard collectors, the Captain would get a chance to actually be commanding. Instead, we get Travis with his joystick and a ridiculous smile on his face. That's another problem--by giving us a helmsman/navigator, we really don't have anyone for Travis to do op-checks WITH, unless he's talking to the Engine Room or something.

    So anyway, because they've decided technobabble is bad, instead of technobabble cop-out endings, we're treated to magic future-tec endings dredged from the cell ship or Daniels' closet.

    In summary, with a show that's so close to being pretty good, that manages to flub key production details, one must suspect that the problem lies in the Producers.
     
  18. John Sullivan

    John Sullivan Commodore Commodore

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    ^ The production ... indeed, the post edit views of Season Two were disasterous. They need to fire and immediately replace anybody related to editing, scoring, and post production sound. I hate to say it, but even I could do a better job, all by myself. I'm sure that the principal at Stage 18 and the farmed-out Drexial Effects are the best in the business. But by the time it gets to UPN with the sleepy score and awkward cuts and timing, it is a terrible showing for what should be a much better show.

    But, I believe that "checklists" of the sort you described that are a huge part of every Shuttle or 747 launch would be a bit too much for television. Here was, as first written in 1997, the departure sequence for LIBERTY 72:

    If I put everybody to sleep, that is probably what B&B would do if they were to also put such reality into their TV show. I figured out how much valuable time I would waste with that sequence, and replaced the whole thing with a status board on the Engineering console that would go to green when the ship became ready to go. But, it would be nice to hear "Aft Scanner To Bridge" once in a while in the background on Enterprise.
     
  19. Odie

    Odie Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    How did a thread dedicated to the many reasons WS hates ENT turn into a debate about arcs and characters on DS9?
     
  20. The Poisoned Elf

    The Poisoned Elf Commander Red Shirt

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    Since I thought this thread were silly from the beginning and the others replies did an excellent job to continue this endless debate. Over and over again. Well, so I just thought some pointless drivel would just lighten things up.