Star Trek: Strange New Worlds

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Dake

Well-known member
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Man what a great episode. I know it was a.. long road.. to get to a Star Trek series that feels like Star Trek, but I'm pretty stoked about it. They took a lot of criticism to heart when it came to updating to 21st Century production values while respecting the setting look and feel of that era. The communicators, the tri-corders, the jelly buttons on the bridge. Fantastic.

The quick fake out at the beginning with the "aliens" seeing the visitors to their planet was cool. There were probably better ways to explain how they got a hold of some warp tech without trying to shoehorn the Discovery reference in there (like they could have just said a ship crashed and reversed engineered it) but it was okay. It just added uncessary extra steps. They also didn't really properly explain why there were only 3 people on that entire ship and why they were all down on the planet and how they got captured. Not a huge deal since we can fill in the blanks about the capture, but you'd think there'd be an actual crew on the Archer.

I also like that the episode mirrored the theme of The Day The Earth Stood Still that Pike was watching at the front. A few minor stupid things like the beaming the formula onto Spock's eyeball... but it's not like pulling weird stuff out of their ass isn't something we haven't seen a million times only to never see again.

All that said, I think it was a solid 8/10. Fingers crossed they aren't just doing this as a bait and switch by having a really strong start that everyone can love and then proceed to start tripping over itself with pointless writing that can make no sense as the series progresses. Being an episodic show makes it less likely that can happen, thankfully.

I thought the Discovery explanation was reasonable and maybe points to them being better about the more typical episodic deus ex machina that is promptly forgotten. I've always figured there is a way to have episodes connect without them needing to be one long-form story and the best way to do that is not have everyone suffer from short-term amnesia.

But yeah, it remains to be seen whether they keep it up. So far all the shows have had decent first episodes...
 

PrimalxConvoy

NOT a New Member.
Citizen
Although I'm not a fan of excessive swearing at sites like this (see the site rules to find out why), I wanted to share this fairly humourous vid from a Star Trek fan. In it, they clearly state why ANYONE who has a problem with "Woke-Trek" is wrong, via rapid use of the f-bomb. As such, it's NSFW or kids:

-
 

TheSupernova

How did we get so dark?
Citizen
I'm honestly not sure how folks find these current iterations of Star Trek "woke". Or, at least, my problems with modern Trek don't include it's inclusivity and any political slant it may or may not have.

Mrs. Supernova is into Grey's Anatomy/Station 19, and holy smokes, those shows are more about pushing viewpoints than anything.
 

Axaday

Active member
Citizen
I'm honestly not sure how folks find these current iterations of Star Trek "woke". Or, at least, my problems with modern Trek don't include it's inclusivity and any political slant it may or may not have.

Mrs. Supernova is into Grey's Anatomy/Station 19, and holy smokes, those shows are more about pushing viewpoints than anything.
Star Trek has always intended to challenge the status quo, but people of our generation and younger can miss it because they started out on reruns and the issues were settled by the time we saw them.

I started watching Law & Order: SVU when I got married because it is one of my wife's favorite shows and it has often challenged me.

Even if you don't change your mind, what on Earth is wrong with having a story show you a perspective that you haven't seen? We all dismiss stuff. Why do people complain about having to dismiss a TV SHOW.
 

PrimalxConvoy

NOT a New Member.
Citizen
Star Trek has always intended to challenge the status quo, but people of our generation and younger can miss it because they started out on reruns and the issues were settled by the time we saw them.

I started watching Law & Order: SVU when I got married because it is one of my wife's favorite shows and it has often challenged me.

Even if you don't change your mind, what on Earth is wrong with having a story show you a perspective that you haven't seen? We all dismiss stuff. Why do people complain about having to dismiss a TV SHOW.
Or, when dealing with racism in (America) some people believe the matter has been "settled" because they can't see any instances of it.
 

TheSupernova

How did we get so dark?
Citizen
Star Trek has always intended to challenge the status quo, but people of our generation and younger can miss it because they started out on reruns and the issues were settled by the time we saw them.

I started watching Law & Order: SVU when I got married because it is one of my wife's favorite shows and it has often challenged me.

Even if you don't change your mind, what on Earth is wrong with having a story show you a perspective that you haven't seen? We all dismiss stuff. Why do people complain about having to dismiss a TV SHOW.
But, here's the thing, I don't disagree with the viewpoints being presented (and I don't want to seem like I am, either). Or to put it like you say, I'm not feeling challenged by it. I'd probably appreciate it more if it did. A viewpoint is only as good as it is presented.

For example, my wife and I recently went through a watch of the first nine seasons of Call The Midwife. I initially dismissed it because "I don't care about watching women have babies", but I was often left pondering the episodes after we saw them because I was considering the topics presented like reproductive rights, the struggles of the poor, access to healthcare, the stigmatization of same sex relationships or even addictions and mental health (and probably other topics that escape me at the moment). And while it's a period piece, all those things all very much (sadly) apply today.

That's where good writing makes all the difference, and that's all I want.
 

Kalidor

Administrator
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
It's every bit a show that asks "What if Star Trek could have been made in 2022?"

I know we've had similar Star Trek themed shows - but this feels like the exact kind of show we got in the 60s but our technology has caught up to the ideas.

I think overall it's a solid 2 for 2 in terms of good episodes.

I might give more thoughts on it going forward but I really liked it.
 

Copper Bezel

Revenge against God for the crime of Being.
Citizen
Yeah, as an enjoyer of both Lower Decks and Disco S4, I don't feel the need to diminish what those shows are doing to recognize what SNW is pulling off. I think Disco eventually figured out how to be a Trek show of its own sort, and I think LD has been until now uniquely the show that knew exactly what it was trying to be out of the gate. It doesn´t bother me that they all play with some of the same material in different tones and from different perspectives, except the unfortunate cases where Discovery has wandered headlong into tropes that LD had already taken the piss out of. I think the first episode is more successful at doing thematic things that S2 of Picard was trying to do, but I think the reasons it didn´t fully work in Picard are less interesting than the reasons it did in SNW, etc. SNW's production design is also massively benefiting from what worked and what didn't in the first two seasons of Disco. And hell, some small fraction of the intertextual weight of quintessential Trekness that the second episode was standing on could be attributed to less accomplished takes in Enterprise involving Hoshi.

But like, as a thing in itself, SNW is something else. The cast has chemistry, the dialogue is snappy, the effects are lavish, both episode scripts were tight and kept things simple but carefully thought out, and the production design is just insanely on-point from the slightly pointier Galileo to the tray of primary-colored liquids Chapel showed up with in the med bay. There´s humor, and the crew tend to like each other and have fun at their jobs, which means I'm more likely to have fun watching. (Which I know is a bit of a dig at live action modern Trek for me to say, but LD isn´t enough, I've been starved for it. Uhura and Chapel's exchange meeting each other while tranquing the Goan guy at the turbolift took three years of weight off my heart in ways only Tendi has in modern era Trek.)

I love the first episode's The Day the Earth Stood Still homage, and I think the episode very effectively solved a nagging problem about the optimism of Trek's future - "Is it really optimistic if we have to blow ourselves up first and then Vulcans fix it?" - by having Pike straight up address the camera in a speech dripping with double meaning and say "My fictional timeline is fixed, but yours, by which I mean you the viewer, your timeline, is not," and starting the series there gives the whole series some thematic ground to stand on. I don't know if the plan is to end every episode with a letter to Princess Celestia like these two did, but all the best episodes of all the best Trek shows have, so I'm not going to complain if it works out that way.

And if this show can keep delivering on the details, whether it's those colorful vials in sick bay or Pike choking on himself asking where Uhura sees herself in ten years, just fully delivering on the concepts and characters at a moment to moment level of resolution like this, it is going to be the definitive Trek series I recommend to people by the end.

There were probably better ways to explain how they got a hold of some warp tech without trying to shoehorn the Discovery reference in there (like they could have just said a ship crashed and reversed engineered it) but it was okay. It just added uncessary extra steps.
They wanted to make it involve Pike, though. It gives it extra weight that it was not just "we" Starfleet responsible, but Pike's own unwitting actions. What I like is that they made that choice to give the situation some extra gravity, that what we're seeing is a consequence of something we viewers were around for and (theoretically) cheering on at the time, but they didn't milk it unnecessarily and overplay the fact that Pike was involved when it logically could have been any Starfleet ship and he knows that too, it just happened to be our guy's.
 
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Dake

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Citizen
I don't think it's diminishing anything to recognize it took Discovery four seasons to figure out how to be Star Trek. I'm just happy ST:SNW has appeared to learn from that and has, imo, been stronger in its first two episodes so far than Disco or Picard have been almost all along. Each of the other series have had their moments, but virtually every episode (even the "good ones") have had issues.
 

Cybersnark

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Citizen
What I'm excited about is that this is the Star Trek I've been asking for; comedy, optimism, adventure, and emotional drama all in the same show with the same characters, not partitioned off and shown one season at a time.
 

Kalidor

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I will absolutely diminish the shows, or at least the enjoyment of the shows, because of the shitty vocal online fanbase of those shows. Where if you levy any critique whatsoever about how terrible the writing, the camerawork, the acting and the overall themes of stories that make zero ******* sense they just put their fingers in their ears shouting "LAH LAH LAH RACISMS WOMAN HATING LAH LAH LAH" at every opportunity. Is it the shows fault? Yeah - because the creators and the actors (the face of the show) actively encourage this type of behavior. Discovery wasn't good, but there was a lot of good things about it that made it tolerable. Season 4 is the first time it felt like actual Star Trek and even then it's a house of cards.

Even now, when SNW is as much or more a diverse cast as Discovery, they are still mad that people who didn't like Discovery like it. It's obnoxious.
 

TheSupernova

How did we get so dark?
Citizen
I ended up re-watching the first episode earlier this week, and ended up liking it even more. Definitely caught a few more things that I missed the first time around. Enjoyed this week's as well.

You folks have been articulating all the positives better than I have, but I'll definitely echo everyone in really liking the cast and their interactions with each other. The stories have been good, and yeah, there's definitely nitpicky stuff, but it's all just nitpicks. None of it takes me out of the show as a whole and makes me wonder "Why is this happening?".

It's the kind of "comfort food" viewing that I've been waiting for from the brand since Discovery S1 (and what I had been getting from The Orville).

If the showrunners can keep the quality up, then I think there will be a lot of happy folks out there.
 
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Kalidor

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The reason why it's been good so far is because the stories are cohesive and the cast has chemistry. The writing is good. The words they say matter. They aren't just speaking "at" each other with platitudes, they talk TO each other. And Uhura.. this was a great focus episode. I know this is a character we're familiar with already, but in TWO episodes of SNW I can name each character and give you a brief description of the kind of character they are. There are people in Discovery who I still can't remember they're name or think of any notable thing they've ever done.

The other thing I liked about ep 2 is that the episode ASKED questions but didn't try to shove the "right answer" down your throat. Was the comet pre-ordained? Is it a thing from the future? Were the Shepherds right to treat it as a supernatural influence? Nobody knows! But it's something to think about.
 

Lobjob

Active member
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Perhaps I should temper my optimism at SNW, but I kind of don't want to?

That first episode (only one I've watched) was wonderful, and talking to us (as copper said) about the most pressing concern of our time (civil and all out war) was a lovely way to get this series off the ground. Pike's timeline is fixed. Pike's own *future* is fixed, but ours? If we come to our senses, we can stop it. Will we?

Also, linking this episode to season 2 of discovery worked, mattered, fit and made sense. The episode and characters had a purpose, were enjoyable to watch and made sense, which despite liking parts of picard and discovery, they don't excell at; to put it diplomatically.
 

Cradok

Active member
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I know this is a character we're familiar with already, but in TWO episodes of SNW I can name each character and give you a brief description of the kind of character they are. There are people in Discovery who I still can't remember they're name or think of any notable thing they've ever done.

In fairness, we're already familliar in some way with six of the nine main characters in SNW; the only new characters are Ortegas, Hemmer and Noonien-Singh (and it's not like we've not heard that name before either). That's not to say that Discovery did a good job with its characters, and it really didn't help that it started with Oops! All Assholes, but you're comparing two wildly different things.
 

Lobjob

Active member
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With Discovery season 2 really being SNW season 0, like any good spin off, we should know some of these characters by now, but the way they handled the ones we didn't know felt very appropriate and satisfying, especially for a pilot.

(EDIT: and by ones we dont know, I'd even count Chapel and uhura because we don't know them as they pertain to this show)
 
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