What are your ideas for "fixing" an episode?

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by LadyMondegreen, Jan 27, 2021.

  1. Herbert

    Herbert Commodore Commodore

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    That's not bad. I like it but far too dark for a TNG episode though. I don't think they ever would have considered it.
     
  2. Maurice

    Maurice Fact Trekker Premium Member

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    In "The Survivors" it always bugs me that the crew never digs into the mystery of how the house and its occupants managed to survive. I mean, the entire planet's surface is devastated, and the energy released in this process would have had all sorts of effects on the soil, etc. How does the crew think the house survives? A forcefield? How far down into the ground did the surface blasting effect go? Did whoever/whatever saved the couple just beam the whole parcel away and then beam it back? No one asks any of this, and they should have if they were actually doing their jobs. The shows often have the crew twiddling their thumbs when there ought to be active investigation going on.

    Also, just what DID happen? Kevin's ultimate explanation remains lacking. The Husnock have this giant ship and Rishon joins her neighbors to fight back...against what, how? Orbital bombardment? Or were the Husnock down there engaging in hand-to-hand combat for some reason? And did they actually blast the entire planet because of Kevin's attempted trickery (which seems utter overkill...literally), or did Kevin's moment of insane rage that destroyed all Husnock fry Rana 4 in the process? I would have had the latter be the case.

    Finally, did Kevin plan to keep Troi in musical torment forever? The ship warps away at one point and she's still suffering. "I will not kill," but he will torment innocents?
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2021
  3. Phoenix219

    Phoenix219 Commodore Commodore

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    Definitely more questions than answers in this one..... I've never liked it. Picard refuses to judge or condemn literal genocide.
     
  4. Orphalesion

    Orphalesion Commodore Commodore

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    Let's start with the fact that Troi should have been on the away team. She sensed something weird about the two survivors through the void of space, and told Picard as much...and then she stayed behind on the Enterprise while the others went to the house.
    Even if she hadn't sensed anything, a pair of potentially traumatised survivors of a horrific calamity that wiped out their whole community is very much a situation where the mental health specialist should be involved.
     
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  5. at Quark's

    at Quark's Commodore Commodore

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    It would seem Starfleet generally has a policy to destroy or at least shelve technology that would fundamentally change the rules of the game. We see it with these Iconian gateways (Contagion / To the Death), Omega Particle based technologies (The Omega Directive -- well, OK, that one really was dangerous), not to mention all those fantastic single-episode breakthroughs that have just this tiny detail going wrong when using them, that we never hear about again. Might the true reason simply be that working out these kinks doesn't always fail, but Starfleet really doesn't want the status quo changed in the Alpha Quadrant because the future would become really uncertain once their competitors have copied these technologies that change basically everything? Similar to how, during WW2, in some cases, both the Allies and the Axis made the same discoveries, but opted to not use them, in fear of the other side finding out?
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2021
  6. Mojochi

    Mojochi Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Ok, yup... I'm doing it. My 20/20 hindsight "fix" for... Shades of Grey.

    1st, the problem: Studio says "You know how you blew most of your season 2 funds on fancy Klingon & Borg episodes? Well, you should've saved some, because surprise! You contractually owe us one more episode, which you won't have much money to make, & not even really enough time to shoot a whole episode. So it'd help if you could trim the shoot time by making it a clip show."

    It's a bag full of suck, but it is what it is, & given that situation, in all fairness, its basic concept is not the worst I've ever heard. A simple away mission. An alien infection. Worried bystanders, & use old clips as memories, etc... The mistake they made, was in who they chose to feature, Riker & Troi. If you're going to use clips for memories, then you might want to feature the character who had the most development over the albeit limited course of the show, thus far... and like it or not, that character is... Wesley.

    Wesley is the one who should get infected, & instead of this being some story where one of the weakest season 2 actors (Sirtis) hangs around uselessly telepathing, you're now featuring the show's best actor (Stewart), in a brief story about how the captain responsible for getting Beverly Crusher's husband killed is seemingly facing the possibility of having her son die on his watch too, while she's literally away & trusting Picard with his care.

    You can now use the wealth of 2 seasons of footage that features Wes for your clips/memories, & you can even set up a bit of a cliffhanger that might hint about his mom returning, given that by then, they probably already knew Muldaur likely wouldn't be back. Plus, you conjure up some good heart-wrenching scenes of concern for Picard to struggle with.

    Problem solved.
     
  7. Phoenix219

    Phoenix219 Commodore Commodore

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    I think it was the writers strike, not a budgetary issue?
     
  8. Orphalesion

    Orphalesion Commodore Commodore

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    I was thinking they could have had a "Talent Show" episode instead of Shades of Grey. The senior officers preforming stuff in front of the crew in 10 Forward. Though unfortunately Gates McFadden wasn't there to dance.
    So I guess they could have Picard recite sonnets, Will blow his trumpet and I guess Guinan/Whoopi Goldberg doing a comedy routine? Not sure what to do with Data, since he wouldn't have his poetry "skills" yet.
    And I don't know enough about the other actors to know whether they had a particular talent/skill that would lend itself to something like that.
     
  9. Mojochi

    Mojochi Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think it was both. From what I've heard, it was a last minute addition to fulfill their episode obligation, & time & money were in short order
     
  10. Dukhat

    Dukhat Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I would have had a new model built for the U.S.S. Pegasus instead of reusing the Grissom model. Granted, "The Pegasus" was filmed halfway through the final season of TNG, but they could have reused the model in DS9.
     
  11. Maurice

    Maurice Fact Trekker Premium Member

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    I think for "Shades of Grey" they ought to have tried to find clips from scenes that were cut from prior episodes, so we'd at least get something a bit more new-to-us where possible.
     
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  12. RAMA

    RAMA Admiral Admiral

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    Where No One Has Gone Before: One of my favorites, so may not fit the parameters (oops) but I love the episode and the atmosphere created in it with mood, music and visuals, and i don't mind the inclusion of Kozinski, but he was about 40% over the top. Yes, he was created to be rude and annoying, outside characters being the ones who could be, but I know that ruins the episode for some people. They could have re-written it with him being more quietly abstruse and mysterious.
     
  13. JonnyQuest037

    JonnyQuest037 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Did they ever even explain why Riker was only reliving memories from the last two years of his life? If not, that'd be the first hole I'd plug.
     
  14. Oddish

    Oddish Commodore Fleet Captain

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    In Season 1, probably not. Later in TNG's run, they were willing to go for the shadows a bit more. And DS9 practically lived there.
     
  15. JaxsBrokenHeart

    JaxsBrokenHeart Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Its a cliché answer for bottle episodes and kind of steps on Disaster's toes in terms of theme, but I think for Shades of Grey the Enterprise going through some sort of anomaly which damages the ship (including life support in a few key sections) and forces various unexpected character pairings while the ship is fixed could work. You keep the cast limited to the main ones, don't have to make any new sets, and even the special effects would be limited to the initial anomaly in space.

    It would be differentiated from Disaster in that the cast aren't really in a position to do much for most of it other than relay some orders with the limited communication they have, acting both as a source of frustration for many of them and creating tension about if the day can be saved without their direct involvement. Really the whole thing would be a set-up for the character work stemming from the specific pairings they're in.

    -Picard & Troi are one, and the nature of how both handle emotion is explored with her mentioning that while she's become a less overtly impassioned as an empath she's still tried to maintain an openness to the crew. This leads to her gently encouraging him to be less guarded around some of the senior staff (basically allowing for an illustration for the shift away from the grumpier Captain of the early years). He perhaps goes into detail about how he was more personable with the Stargazer crew and that closeness weighed heavily on him following the Battle of Maxia, helping to explain why he's been a bit colder as Captain of the Enterprise.

    -Riker & Wesley are another, with it starting off very much with the former seeming to be in command of the situation that the latter admires. But as the situation lingers on Wesley's resolve starts to break a bit and he reveals that the events of the last year like the Borg encounter and the Nagilum incident have shaken him a bit, and that he's not sure how well he can keep handling events like this, especially without his mom. Get a bond between the two given both have lost parents young and struggled when the other left, building towards Riker explaining his that his confidence went through big tests just Wesley's has been doing.

    -Worf & La Forge get their own story with the two initially butting heads given the former's tendency to confront the major problem head on while the latter wants to think and problem solve it first. There's tension from that initially, and the contrasting reasons as to why each one went into Starfleet are highlighted. However both do acknowledge each other's best elements; Worf saying he does admire Geordi's genuine passion for his work beyond merely duties and La Forge telling the other man he respects Worf's dedication in protecting the crew as security officer above everything else, even when his ideas clash with everyone else's.

    -Data and Pulaski of course, round it out as we finally get a payoff to their initial conflict as the android is put in the unlikely position of assisting the Doctor with her patients. Her initial dismissal of him as a cold machine is really looked at here, and she admits that having seen Data as a person in the past year that she was wrong. In a bit of twist, Data could then state that her initial assessment may have been somewhat correct, that even as he evolves he may not ever be able to become a genuinely warm figure for others. That could be something she does disagree with, telling him that like medicine, real growth is something beyond technological barriers.

    Yeah its the kind of story you get when have to do a cheap episode, but at least there's a character focus.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2021
  16. Oddish

    Oddish Commodore Fleet Captain

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    The Data/Pulaski bit would have been awesome. It would have brought their arc to a satisfying end.
     
  17. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

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    I have mentioned this before: "Shades of Grey", the Season Two clip show.

    It could have been improved by adding dropped scenes from previous episodes (ie. that had been left on the cutting room floor due to lack of time). For example, Wesley's birthday party, which was reported in several newsletters of the day. Dropped from "Coming of Age" due to timing problems, Worf wants to know about Earth birthday parties and manages to insult Bev by "asking a lady her age". She shoves a plate at him, saying, "Have some cake, Worf".

    It would have made the clip show a little fresher. Missed opportunity.
     
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  18. Xhiandra

    Xhiandra Captain Captain

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    Alternate Shades of Grey fix: Picard decides the observation lounge needs a new coat of paint. He's settled on grey, but not on an exact shade yet.
    The senior officers spend half the episode arguing the merits of one shade over another, and the other half watching it dry.

    Because even that would've been better than a clip show.
     
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  19. JaxsBrokenHeart

    JaxsBrokenHeart Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Would be worth it just to see how dramatic Picard might get about it.

    Enterprise Painter: Well what we could do is make a line here with both shades on either side to which works better.

    Picard: No!!

    points his finger to a different spot


    Picard: The line must be drawn here! This far and no further!

    Enterprise Painter: Alright, sorry...
     
  20. Khan Jr

    Khan Jr Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    You don't want to know his reaction when they ask him if it'd be OK to illuminate it with five lights.
     
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