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Old 09-13-2017, 05:32 PM
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Nate the Great Nate the Great is offline
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Default 30th Anniversary TNG Episode Discussion Marathon

The actual episode discussions don't start until the 28th, but I thought I'd start the thread and discuss the production history in advance.

A scan of the original series bible

Pertinent quotes:

Ship's Mission: To expand the body of human knowledge. To provide assistance as required to Earth/Federation colonies, commerce and travelers. To provide for Earth/Federation security. To seek out new life, new civilizations. To provide further understanding of the universe and humanity's place in it. "Who are we? Where have we come from? What are we about? And where are we going?"

Commerce? I thought money didn't exist! Don't you just love Gene's optimism?

Humanity's place? Don't you mean sentient life or humanoid life?

A large part of the success of the original Star Trek series is attributable to the fact that it was not a star and co-star series, but a family ensemble in which the continuing characters felt great affection for each other, allowing the audience to identify with and share that same feeling of affection.

Ha ha. Tell that to Shatner and Nimoy's agents. The bit about this is "not a star and co-star series" makes me want to make a jab at Discovery, but I will refrain.

[Picard] has an unspoken but deep father-son relationship with [Riker].

Ha ha ha. Boy did THAT change!

Data is an ideal Starfleet officer.

Another hilarious joke. There's no such thing as the "ideal Starfleet officer", and the journey is the point of his character.

While [Jack Crusher's] death wasn't Picard's fault, it was his orders that sent [Beverly's] husband there and she has found it difficult to forgive Picard, although further stories will see the two developing a strong mutual attraction.

Did Beverly ever show resentment or anger toward Picard on this point?

Believability is everything. It is the most essential element of any Star Trek story.

Ha ha ha! Oh, man, that's a good one. Did Brannon and Braga ever read this before working on Voyager?

The people must be believable.

Insert mutiny-against-Janeway joke here.

Too often, script ideas show characters bouncing from solar system to solar system, planet to planet, without the slightest comprehension of the distances involved or the technologies required to support such travel.

Insert "writers can't do math" joke here.

[What doesn't work are] stories in which our characters must do something stupid or dangerous, or in which our technology breaks down in order to create a jeopardy. Our people are the best and the brightest, and our technology is tried and proven. Likewise, our characters are very committed to their mission. Please do not have them abandoning or betraying same because they have fallen in love with a beautiful pirate princess.

Oh, the list we could write of episodes that violate these rules...

Log entries are ALWAYS introduced with a stardate.


I guess the concept of "supplemental" hasn't been thought up yet.

A transporter effect reverse angle will sometimes be used, which will be the optical effect as seen from the perspective of a person actually being beamed somewhere.

Did they do this before Reg had transporter psychosis?

[Costumes will be] much less "military" looking than in the recent Star Trek films, since 24th century technology centers on enhancing quality of life, clothing will be comfortable as well as attractive.

If anything, I thought that the early TNG pajamas were less comfortable than the Monster Maroons! As for "attractive", I beg to differ.

It is possible that one wall of the personal quarters may be a "holographic window" much like the holodecks.

That would be awesome! Too bad the budget wouldn't support it. I'd love to have a "window" with a holographic forest and stream past it, how about you guys?

In discussions with friends, [Picard] pretends to believe that France represents "the only true civilization" to appear on Earth; and it delights him when a witty companion wants to prove the same for England, Italy, or China.

This sounds more like Chekov and Russia, 'cause I only saw genuine belief in French superiority from Picard. "Mister Data, for centuries on Earth the French language represented civilization!"

[Riker] is called "Number One" by Captain and crew alike.

Did anyone other than Picard ever call him "Number One"?

Female friends seem to enjoy saying Bill.

Troi called him Bill twice, and it's a shame it wasn't used more often. It would've been interesting to have him run across an old girlfriend every so often who would make him uncomfortable by using Bill.

[Riker] regards Captain Picard with a mixture of awe and affection.

Awe? No, Wesley regards Picard with awe.

Riker also has some difficulty in accepting Lt. Commander Data as a crewman equal.

Was this present beyond "Encounter at Farpoint?"

Data (rhymes with "that-a")...

Ha ha ha. When Pulaski tried that he corrected her.

[Riker and Troi's] relationship remains unconsummated.

Interesting. Was this Gene's idea: if they haven't slept with each other yet it makes it more okay for them to sleep with other people without destroying all possibility of a reconciliation? I'm not going to comment on the morality of this one; I'd get hurt either way by this two-edged sword.

Tasha has a beau ideal too, which happens to be fifteen year old Wes Crusher. Deprived of her own childhood by the harsh life of her "hell planet" home, she treats this person like the most wonderful person imaginable. Wes is the childhood friend that Tasha never had.

Um, ew. And incidentally, I had to look up "beau ideal", it means the embodiment of perfection in something. Wes is the ideal Federation teenager? Ha ha ha.

Geordi's aboard specialty is the starship school for children.

Hmm, there are certainly narrative possibilities here that were never realized, aren't there?

[Beverly's] wit and intelligence (and VERY female form) have not escaped the Captain's eye either.

I thought Gene didn't want them to get together.

[Wesley] most definitely is NOT a nerd.

Ha ha ha, that's a good one, Gene. Tell me another.

Wes considers his mother as being impossibly "ancient."

We never saw this. Had this been the case, I wonder how he'd react to the birth of his half-brother Rene Picard fifteen years in the future.

Quite recently, for example, Klingon (there should either be an "Empire" or "homeworld" in there) joined the Federation and we have begun to see Klingon officers in Starfleet.

How many good stories would we have lost had Worf not been the only Klingon in Starfleet?

There are only two possible exceptions to the Prime Directive: when the safety of the starship is jeopardized or when it is absolutely vital to the interests of the Federation.

Odd. We're told several times that every Starfleet officer and Federation scientist will sacrifice their lives before violating the Directive and that we don't put Federation interests above it. There's a whole thread waiting to happen here discussing the implications, but I won't be starting it. I will say, however, that if a ship is going somewhere where lives may be lost in the name of the Prime Directive, there shouldn't be children on board. They're not mature enough to make this decision.

Any Captain who does find it necessary to violate the Prime Directive had better be ready to present a sound defense of his actions.

Who else wants front-row seats at Janeway's court martial?

STARFLEET IS NOT A MILITARY ORGANIZATION.

I'll just refer you to SFDebris' review of "Peak Performance" here. Suffice to say, this is a stupid statement to make.

Because the ship's computer is constantly monitoring the daily routines of our people, there will be many times when it will know exactly where to deliver the turbolift's passengers without their even having to say.

We never saw this, and for good reason. It'd be a logistical nightmare.

The phaser rifle is rarely seen, rarely used. It is powerful enough to kick Los Angeles into the ocean.

Wow. I wonder where they keep the warp coils to prevent the phaser wielder from being kicked the other way into the Atlantic!

[The ship's phasers] are quite capable of disintegrating another Constitution class vessel-or even a small moon, if necessary.

Wow. Too bad the Enterprise left before they could be installed; they would've been really useful against the Borg!
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Last edited by Nate the Great; 09-13-2017 at 09:04 PM.
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