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Star Trek: Discovery / The Orville

(2 posts)
  • Started 1 year ago by geoffhart1962
  • Latest reply from geoffhart1962

  1. geoffhart1962

    So, now that we've had 2 episodes of the new Trek, any thoughts?

    I'm rather liking it. It's got a grittier feel than any of the previous series*, with a really interesting lead character, well-acted too. It's started off on a nicely portentous note, and unusually, it looks like it will hit the ground running and won't take 6+ episodes to find its pace. (I call that Hart's law of TV series: don't judge a show until it's had 6 episodes for the characters to fully gel. I coined this "law" after bailing on Babylon 5 after seeing the first episode, and only much later realizing I'd missed a pretty good show.)

    * The writers clearly understand the central conflict at the heart of the Trek universe: the conflict between the Federation's honest desire to "come in peace" and realpolitik. I very much want to see where they go with this, as it has enormous dramatic potential that was rarely explored in previous series.

    Of course, there are still some "what were you thinking?" script moments*, but on the whole it's no worse than the previous series. I also like that the theme music "quotes" some of the best snatches from previous series. (Spoiler alert) My only howling objection: the bastards killed off Michelle Yeoh! The relationship between her and Michael was one of the great things about the series, and even passed the Bechdel test. Secondary and more minor objection: I really liked the Michael Dorn–era Klingons. Not sure I like the new costumes.

    * Like both the Vulcans and the Klingons noticing the light from the Klingon beacon within hours, despite both being located many light years from the beacon. Light traveling faster than light is a neat trick if you can manage it.

    On the other hand, I think The Orville is going to disappear (i.e., be cancelled) quickly. It's fallen smack into the black hole between trying to be funny and trying to be serious, thereby achieving neither goal. There are too many infodumps, which might be tolerable in print but are deadly on the screen. And the actors aren't making much progress towards working together fluidly. Which means even applying Hart's law may not give the actors time to begin working together smoothly, particularly if the writing doesn't improve.

    Contrasting viewpoint: My wife (also a long-term fan) deeply dislikes the new Trek, and though not fond of The Orville, considers it a better effort.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  2. geoffhart1962

    The Orville seems to be MIA, so no further comments.

    As for Discovery, I'm not fond of the plotline for faster FTL travel (no spoilers here!) and still prefer the old Klingons, but I'm liking the characters on the whole, and appreciate that the writers will kill off characters for plot-appropriate reasons -- even if you're thinking it's a continuing character. Shades of George Martin!

    Posted 1 year ago #

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