Why don't the execs see it???

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Enterprise' started by PeeWee's USS Lollipop, Feb 26, 2003.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    ^^ Are you a designer? Well I am, and I've worked with world class guys on Sc-Fi movies.

    You're not wrong when it comes to taste. This Enterprise is indeed a slick and pro design. It's got good qualities and is indeed more crampt. There are some great elements in the interior design of Enterprise. But it doesn't give me any visual clue that it is anything different than past Enterprises (there are what, 5?)... except being a little smaller. When I compare Enterprise to past/future ships, it fits right in ... but it shouldn't. No jump in design from the 1701 to the Art Deco ships of the movies (a major change). Then, TNG gave us a very 1980s blob ship (not my fav but definitely different and defined the ship from past ones). DS9 went more military. Voyager more, ... er, Dildo like. lol!!! And then the stealth Enterprise from the TNG movies. Big design changes. Why not ENT?

    There is a very 1990s cool, aquamarine techno thing going with ENT. This, though too monotone and bland, is fine as a design, but to my designers eye... the interiors of Enterprise look like a Web Developers offices. It just looks cool (cool colours, etc.) and post-post modern. So what! It's neat? Whatever... but it's a prequel show... but with designs we have seen before... Arg! we really need to be shown the differences. The affect is that Enterprise NX-01 is just another Star Trek ship. And it all stinks of Voyager.

    It's not nit-picking to point out they use the same beam FX and sound for the phase-pistols. It points out that the FX people had not bothered to do anything different since Voyager. So we get the same ship and the same phasers.

    btw the beams are new animation... they are 'slightly' different (and well animated!)... but not different enough. Adding the same sound FX is cheap and unforgivably lazy. This is a big budget premier show for UPN, showing off their lack of giving a shit about the setting doesn't bode well for any production. Especially if it's with every phaser shot in every show.

    ... these tech issues are a result of a production that is steeped in bland corporate contract designs (no ILM any more) done by people who mostly do commercials. It looks good, but it's not what a fictional story needs. Hey, if your selling candybars... :rolleyes:

    The universal Translator shouldn't be there, because Hoshi was supposed to do that. Already, ENT has dropped this premise in favour of doing Voyager shows where language is not a problem. In this Communicator show... they are no where near their communicators (Civilization established that the Communicators are what do the translating) yet they manage to speak the local language and even lie like thieves! Lucky eh? :rolleyes:

    As the show goes on, it gives us more and more loony tech points to pick at. Literally, McHale's Navy had better technical continuity!

    You can watch the show and go "hey, coolio ships and phasers" all you want. It's perfectly Ok to love it if you just happen too. But as a professional, I would predict that on the whole, most people will get very bored at looking at it in a short time. It's the sort of bland artistic idiom that is used to dull the minds of telemarketing employees in giant glass and steel prisons. After that sits in to the viewer, it would get worse for anyone living on that ship. They prolly would become violent or seriously depressed after a time from the oppression such a sterile environment might induce. There is a reason the USNavy uses colour codes for ship areas and such. People have to live there!! That is, you can't just design it to look cool, it has to work!

    It is a snub to the fans. Not doing your job (it's their job to make sure these things are done) or doing it badly isn't fun to watch. The design quality and thought that went into it is shallow and all too familiar to someone who has spent the last few years telling Executives they are morons for thinking this was good design (yup... that's me! :)). You could go on that perhaps they are just that stupid... well, I'm not on the Trek set. If I was I'd be yelling a lot.

    Of course, if you're not a designer - Who cares! And your right of course. Most people have no clue what I just said above... and don't care. But as I predicted, I do believe that it has a negative effect on the viewer (if only subconsciously). You know how people looooved the 1701... they would dream about it! Draw it over and over. Kids knew the truth right away!!! It came natural to them. Think about it. :)

    Enterprise isn't just uninspired... it's a corporate designed interior space. :rolleyes:

    Sometimes I think the outside profile of the ship is OK simply because they DID steal the design from a past Trek! lol! :lol:
  2. Guest

    Guest Guest

    This threads moved onto the tech stuff. My take on it...

    Yes, I'd like to see clunkier, more-pre-TOS tech. But I'll agree with several posters that the "look" just isn't going to harken back to the white, smooth, featureless, CHEAP sets of TOS, because "we" won't buy it.
    If anything, I think the ENT sets themselves are a largely successfull effort at pre-TOS, although they could be improved:
    1)Smaller looking. Lower ceilings, overhanging compartments, smaller quarters, implied that all "crewmen" share quarters in two men bunk rooms. (Roddenbury liked showing a junior crewmen in a single room because he found packed communal living one of the worse aspects of his own military experiance. It was also cheaper to re-dress the quarter set for any crewman.) Heck, you could hold ballroom dances in the TOS engine room. The warpcore looked like it was huge behind that one wall. In ENT the crew is crawling around the thing, just like turbine engines on ships today. But, P-Trope's right when he's implied that they could "do" more with the sets simply by selecting more interesting camera angles.
    2) A mess hall with the automat wall (implies a limited menu) as opposed to what were obviously TOS versions of replicators in multiple rec rooms and even the transporter room. ENT could do more with this, since one might imagine the "protein resequencer" appearently spits out masses of generic "food" that Chef actually turns into something recognizable as normal food. With as many meals as are shown, more could be done with this, in a very few lines.
    3) Shuttle pods and the pod bay. Again, TOS showed an appearently huge, featureless room. ENT has a cluttered, smaller space.

    I'd like to see more, obviously, primative technology. You've all mentioned examples of tech that appear to be more or less similar to 24thC. There are some obvious possibilities to "de-improve" what they've already shown us in ENT.
    1) Handweapons. Show the phase pistol's "stun" as not being so certainly stunning. Show it as having a lingering, debilitating effect. Kill someone by accident for God's sake and then be less ready to "stun" everybody - more of an ethical problem of when to use sidearms.
    2) Drop the sensor's ability to always show a human biosign standing out as opposed to other mammal races. "Hoshi, are Archer and Trip on that ship?" "8 human-like biosigns, 4 reptilian, its hard to say...".
    3) I'd like to show more zero-G or non-life support area's of the ship. This would possibly be prohibitly expensive to do casually, but it could be something "told" only, unless there was a plot reason to feature it.
    4) Drop almost all of the real time transmissions with StarFleet. More "messages" that require Archer to do his own interpretation and go out on a limb.
    5) The NX-01 has already been shown as frequently outgunned. This could be emphasized more of the time, and as most of you point out, feature more visually and audably different special effects.
    Plenty of room for improvement.
  3. James Dixon

    James Dixon Rear Admiral Newbie

    Jan 4, 2001
    Westwood, NJ, USA
    Wow, and after all the bombardment, I thought that for once I was being a bit too critical and nitpicky over the series...
  4. Guest

    Guest Guest

    LOL !!! lol!! HaHahaha Dixen, you're funny! :lol: I think I was channeling Ptrope there. :p
  5. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Yeah, Dixon, Plum and I just got hysterical designing "our" perfect "look" for the show. Your original comment for compelling writing is really the crux. I'd be willing to try cardboard sets if the plots and writing were top notch, all the time. But there are points to be gained in a show for self-consistant background and a minimum of "magic" technology fixes. If you feel like the backstory and set-up are "real" its easier to enjoy the whole package.
  6. GabeHimself

    GabeHimself Commodore Commodore

    Jan 6, 2003
    Nowhere, it's as simple as that.
    BRAVO Plum. Friggin BRAVO. As a viewer, production design is actually really important to me, I notice cinematography, lighting (the most important and overlooked aspect in many shows), and production design. Ken Adams could make the Enterprise look better than Zimmerman, I think he's the uninspired designer. Trek designs have been bad since TNG. They were so so in the movies, the 1701-A's bridge wasn't that good and neither was the one in Trek 2. But TOS' designs amazed me and still do, the bright colors and the beautiful designs just made it feel warm and inviting. Not cold and sterile. Trek had more of a sense of fun back then. I'm of course am of the opinion that there is no bad episode of TOS.

    Why do all the sets since DS9 feel claustrophobic? Even the planet sets, the early seasons of TNG didn't have this encapsulated grey haze. Honestly, the Trekverse looks as if viewed through a grey haze. This post is in no way organized, but the phase pistols look dumb. The PPGs from Babylon 5 looked cooler, heck ray guns from Buck Rodgers look cooler than these horrible bulk-guns.

    Production design on Nemesis was bad, as was Shinzon's costuming but thats a different area. I only am impressed with Shinzon's bridge, but when you know film well you realize Nemesis had very few sets. Plus the corridors were very obviously and horrible matted. They didn't even use blue screen to make it look lke there were more corridors, they just painted it going off into forever and they didn't do it well...

    And production design on the new Star Wars trilogy looks nice, but it isn't Star Wars. I prefer Marquand's graphite blocks to Chiangs bright anime-derivative swirls. Star Wars should be darker and Star Trek should be brighter.

  7. James Dixon

    James Dixon Rear Admiral Newbie

    Jan 4, 2001
    Westwood, NJ, USA
    That's pretty much what I was thinking... When E was just a glimmer, I was thinking about how it could very well be pulled off as a relatively low-budget series... Being pre-TOS and all they wouldn't need a huge ship, streaking stars/warp effects, and in keeping with TOS, tractor beams and shields need not be visible...

    But of course I knew better!

    It's a retro-Voyager series, sets and all... Elsewhere I've speculated on the B&B Plan (I've gotten rather good at predicting Trek's future, like the Borg showing up on V and all--and I'm not even related to Jeanne Dixon!)...
    What we have here is E running for "the usual" 7 seasons...
    Meaning that it'll end in their year of 2157 probably with lots of Romulan War space battles and such... B&B'll probably have a feature film to reuse the sets and costumes maybe called The Romulan War...leading into his next series called, simply, Federation... Taking these characters and leftovers in new directions...already covered before...
    By this time, most of the original TOS cast will be dead or fully retired from acting, including several of the leads from the other series, making an Enterprise series of feature films a priority...

    Concurrently I predict the curse of the CGI revolution and how all the techno-geeks/computer nerds out there will be getting off on it... After B&B's E and F they could very well get their filthy tentacles on...on...on...REDOING CLASSIC TOS EPISODES in one bloody way or another... Adding in all those streaking stars and warp effects, massive Klingon cruisers, "modern" technobable background chatter, overhead bridge viewscreens complete with Okudan LCARS displays... Oh, the pain!

    Now you know the kinds of nightmares I have...
  8. Gorn 2001

    Gorn 2001 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Aug 10, 2001
    Boulder, CO, USA
    But don't you see? That's the problem. The TOS set was very bright so it would look nice on early color TVs. It had very little real world sense and reflected the 'future view' of the 60's with wild colors, go go boots, orange food cubes and the like.

    THe ship design on ENT makes a lot more sense. It looks like a more cramped ship. It's filled with equipment, butresses and functional surfaces. It is painted to look like it is constructed in a standardized and durable surface. Colors are used for a reason. There are instructions and warnings on certain surfaces. The engine room looks designed to provide enough room for machinery and crew to work safely not play vollyball (as the TOS engine room often looked).

    Don't get me wrong. I loved the TOS designs at the time. But they were very much a product of their times and are now very much outdated.

    I think the DS9 set was set to represent a very old space station from a different race of beings. It really had to be very different than TNG (Hilton in the sky) or it wouldn't have worked. You could argue that it should have been giant atriums of glass, but I think the sets fit the show very well.

    I don't think VOY had particularely claustrophobic sets at all. They pretty mush matched TNG in overall design. It was a little darker, something I think is a big improvement.

    Are you sure about that? Buck was pretty corny and the weapon looked like a toy.
    Buck Rogers

    ENT's phasers needed to look much different, much more clunky compared to 'later' designs. While not my favorite look, it's really just a prop and it doesn't distract me. I preffered that they didn't go to beam weapions and stuck with the sidearms shown in BB.

    Again, it's a different time. In the case of SW Ep 4, 5 & 6 took place in a run down, well used universe that is a result of the Imperial rule. Eps 1 & 2 take place in a renaissance time before. Remember, Lucas introduced us to the 'used univers' look. Up until that time Sci-Fi tended to look pristine and and sterile, much like TOS. While I prefer the used look of the later episodes, I have grown to appreciate the more fantastic look. Either way Lucas' team does an amazing job at their design to make a whole complete statement.

    If anything I think ENT should go a little darker. More task lighting, less general fill. In general, they have a great look on ENT.

    And before there's a torrent of 'You don't know what you're talking about! You're not an artiste!'. I have 15 years of production experience behind me. I've done art direction, directing, producing and direction of photography.

    What I have really seen over the last few years is a general opinion among young desingers that 'retro' is where it's at, despite the fact that those designs have proven to be short lived in the past.
  9. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I am of the oppinion the DS9 had some of the finest writing and quality around. It was a great show! Now as for all the Ent critisizm stop for now please... Shows are never fully developed into there prime in the 1st or 2nd season... 3rd maybe but not even usually its about the 4rth season of Trek shows that we really see whats up and the show is great... Not that the first few seasons are all horrible I found the last 4 epps of Ent Stigma - Canamar to be quite enjoyable.
  10. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Yeah, you have to simply look at the rebel's Y-Wing fighter. It appears clunky. But look at the streamlining on the nose and front on the engine pods. In the 'prequal' era, I imagine had a Y-Wing been around, it could well have had this steamlined look all over, but the necessities of maintaining the ships with limited resources would lead to nicities that did not effect the ship's performance being done away with.
  11. ontrack

    ontrack Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Jul 25, 2003
    Not here.
    With Star Trek TOS the key theme was hope for the future.

    In Enterprise the key theme is betrayal and hopelessness.

    Season three has not succeeded. Enterprise is not gaining viewers. It is continuing to lose them:

    Average Viewers Per Episode Season 1: 6,710,000
    Average Viewers Per Episode Season 2: 4,400,000
    Average Viewers Per Episode Season 3: 3,830,000

    Viewers for "Damage" 2,860,000

    Source - http://www.ece.ucdavis.edu/~mvrojo/entratings.htm

    Conclusion - the Xindi arc has failed. :(
  12. DunkMachine

    DunkMachine Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Aug 23, 2003
    What everyone seems to be forgetting is that Enterprise is trying to gain a new generation of viewers. The current fanbase grew up watching TOS and TNG and were awestruck. Now Trek is trying to do the same with todays youth. We are irritated about the lack of dialogue and character development, where kids in their teens are enjoying the CGI.

    ENT simply isn't aimed at the old fanbase. That kindof explains the lack of "maturity" in the show.
  13. Anachronus

    Anachronus Commodore Commodore

    Jul 24, 2001
    New Orleans, La. - LGD if you must know.
    Only if logic is a bunch of pretty flowers that smell bad. :lol:
  14. ontrack

    ontrack Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Jul 25, 2003
    Not here.
    The problem is that the "old fanbase" do not like the "new" season three Enterprise so are not watching.

    Also the "kids" don't like Star trek because it is for "old geeks" so they are not watching.

    So the lack of "maturity" appears to be achieving an early death of the series.

    Where is the logic?
  15. commodore64

    commodore64 Vice Admiral Admiral

    May 28, 2003
    Communist Portland
    Ontrack, it's funny. I'm an Archer fan and a A/T'P fan, and I love season 3. Impulse, Twilight, Azati Prime, Damage, Stratagem, Anomaly and ... The Council probably make up some of my favorite episodes!

    I really have been trying to figure out why there's been such a massive decline in ratings.
  16. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Mar 8, 2001
    They don't see it 'cause it ain't so.

  17. TRH

    TRH Commodore Commodore

    Oct 1, 2001
    I really think its debatable that ENT is aimed at anything since it seems to keep missing the mark :)
  18. Tiberius1701

    Tiberius1701 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Sep 18, 2003
    Opposite IMO.
    Star Wars prequels are intentionally light. This is so that, when viewed in order, when the Empire comes, there is a noticable shift toward darkness and decay.

    As for trek - also intentionally dark. This is to contrast the bright glory days of the Federation to come with the darker "more barbaric" past as Spock used to say.

    I'm an artist and I do a lot of sci-fi art. I'm also a fan since TOS and also pay attention to details, continuity, etc. Plum's made up his own mythology behind what went on to produce the tech and designs in Enterprise, but they said before the show even came out that they WANTED to use more primitive tech, but that there were some things that were traditionally trek-like and they didn't want to alienate existing fans or not be recognizable (that's a paraphrase from Berman, in a Trek Communicator interview before the premier). So, it wasn't that they were lazy (and by the way the sounds and effects were all recreated, not "the same", so they weren't saving any time or energy by making the phase pistols phaser-like). I myself would have liked to see firearms, or perhaps stick with different looking laser pistols, but if I were calling the shots from a business side I'd have to say go with something a little more trekish. Nevertheless, they've still managed to stay within continuity just fine, with the phaser tech precursors. It shows a great attention to things like Worf's comment about the 22nd century.

    Also the UT situation is fine. In TOS it is assumed they have UT's in their communicators as well. The only reason you saw a big clunky silver one in the Cochrane TOS episode was because spock said it had been modified to be able to translate the language of an energy creature (something ENT's UT probably can't do). So, when dealing with first-contact languages, or highly different languages, ENT's UT requires time and a skilled linguist to operate. Sounds more primitive to me. :)
  19. PeeWee's USS Lollipop

    PeeWee's USS Lollipop Commodore Commodore

    Oct 28, 2000
    Do you have to train to reach this sort of level of arrogance or does it come naturally?
  20. Vestboy

    Vestboy Captain Captain

    Oct 17, 2001
    Austin, TX
    One thing you have to realizes is how the "execs" look at the show. A friend of mine who worked in programming once gave me this frightening vision into their outlook:

    "So, we've got three minutes of commercials here, and then twelve minutes of something else, and then back to the commercials."