May 22, 2022

Strange New Worlds

The new Star Trek series has premiered.

After the middle fingers to the fans that were Star Treks Picard and Discovery, faith is weak. 

Nevertheless, the pilot episode was run on YouTube last week and, being a trekkie of some 40 years, I watched it.

I do NOT immediately despise this show.

It looks good. The pilot was decently written and it felt in many ways like a decent Next Generation episode. There was a lot of extraneous drama and plot contrivances shoehorned into the pilot but the episode did not actually suffer for it. 

For those familiar with Trek lore the Pilot is a first contact story that deals with the origins of "General Order One". The episode takes place immediately after the finale of Star Trek: Discovery and is still cleaning up the mess that show left.  Enterprise is getting repaired and Captain Pike is on sabbatical. He's contemplating a vision of his future he received towards the end of STD, which he was given so that the misandric, feminist writers of that atrocity could have the sadistic satisfaction of having a strong male lead scream like a 9 year old girl dropped into a pit of tarantulas. Suffice it to say that plot point left a mark. However, notwithstanding the legit trauma itself, Pike's concern's about the matter are quite professional and rational.

Meanwhile, Number One receives information that a warp signature has been detected from a quarantined system a few hours flight time from Earth.  Starfleet is still trying to put itself back together after the events of the previous series, and doesn't have any first contact teams in the core of the Federation at the moment (They stay on the frontier).  Eager to give her crew a First Contact Award, Number one asks for and gets permission to take a few off duty Enterprise Crew on a mothballed, but barely functional Hermes class scout to pop into the newly star-fairing system and say "Hi!".

Things do not  go as planned, and what should have been an easy day away from the shipyard on fun collateral duty becomes an interstellar incident with far reaching influences upon subsequent events.

It was not a GREAT episode, but it was a quite solid one. It actually has something useful to say about bureaucratic overreaction, which is not a lesson I expected from a Star Trek show in current year. 

The pilot has been pulled from YouTube, but there are several trailers, this one giving a good overview of the cast, which I rather like a lot.

Well, except for La'an, who's surname looks to be a crime against canon and who appears to be a parody of a Mary Sue in a Star Trek fanfic. OTOH, if you're gonna do a Mary Sue, this is the place to do it and the actress  (who looks to be quite good) seems to lean into it with considerable gusto. 

Aside that the cast looks GREAT and, unlike Discovery, the (possible) Mary Sue is not the lead, and to be fair, actually looks to have real potential, this being quite explicitly an ensemble cast. 

So I am cautiously optimistic.

On the other hand, I have memories of another pilot, not so long ago that looked to have quite a lot of potential. 

That optimism was misplaced. 

So a decent pilot is not going to get me to subscribe to CBS-All Access. 

I'll wait. 

Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 11:26 PM | Comments (3) | Add Comment
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1 For another take, Doomcock (aka Overlord DVD) was..  far less complementary than our host on this series.

Posted by: StargazerA5 at Mon May 23 06:06:11 2022 (53Aon)

2 Messing around with Vulcan reproduction is high on the no-no scale. Theodore Sturgeon was a better writer, storyteller, and mythmaker on his worst day than most people on their best.
And more to the point, everybody knows that Spock was catnip to fan ladies, and the lore was a big part of that.
But the Bad Robot movies had already contradicted Vulcan reproductive lore, although most people ignored that; so this was just more of the same.
Shrug. I gave up on new ST a long time ago. If I hear enough good things, I'll watch it. But I don't think they want me to watch it.

Posted by: Suburbanbanshee at Mon May 23 14:53:12 2022 (sF8WE)

3 It is a shame that the IP holders have not produced any more Star Trek  after Enterprise.  

Like Star Gate and Star Gate Atlantis, and the three Star Wars movies, there are a lot of sci fi IPs that just suddenly stop, inexplicably, when it should have still been possible for them to make a lot of money by putting new material on the screen. 

Doctor Who, in particular, is surprising by the way that it just stops.  They had done all that effort to make  a series that they could continue through at least a dozen main actors, and stopped with around half that, never touching the property again for thirty or forty years. 

It is a disgrace to sit on that IP, and to not use it to produce more excellent material, comparable to the original stuff. 

At least we have Galaxy Quest. 

Posted by: PatBuckman at Tue May 24 16:17:57 2022 (r9O5h)

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