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omegaman 06-16-2010 11:49 PM

Trek Nation Trailer
 
http://www.wired.com/underwire/2010/06/trek-nation/

Trek Nation is a documentary about the creator of Star Trek: Gene Roddenberry.

chator 06-18-2010 09:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by omegaman (Post 304508)
http://www.wired.com/underwire/2010/06/trek-nation/

Trek Nation is a documentary about the creator of Star Trek: Gene Roddenberry.

Thanks for that Omegaman. I think i will check it out when it comes out. But it looks like a bit of a puff piece that blows Roddenberry and Star Trek out of proportion. Star Trek was ultimately an action/adventure television show and Roddenberry was just a tv producer, not a philosopher, or great political or religious thinker.

kevin 06-18-2010 11:21 AM

It might be of interest. I don't know, some of these things don't really find their way to the UK however it depends if it's a decent documentary or not.

horatio 06-18-2010 02:08 PM

Sorry to be so blunt but this article is a piece of crap.
It suggests that Trek became superdark after 1991 and changed when Abrams entered the stage and that Roddenberry's main concern was terrorism. What the f**k?

Furthermore I gotta agree with Chator, Roddenberry had a great vision and I am the first one to emphasize how important it is to "take care of the grail" but GR didn't create Trek alone

kevin 06-18-2010 02:54 PM

Well, the timeline does fit with the creation of DS9 circa 1991 - which went in a whole direction viewed as very un-Gene Roddenberry and un-Star Trek by some fans because of where it went.

GR had several edicts that a lot of writers didn't like (Ronald D. Moore has been relatively vocal about them) but had to work with that fit his vision of Trek - or at least the one he was having that week due to his ever revisionist nature - so I think there's some slight merit in the darkness claim. Just a skoosh.

The terrorism thing? Yeah, not sure where he was on that at all.

martok2112 06-18-2010 07:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by chator (Post 304521)
Star Trek was ultimately an action/adventure television show and Roddenberry was just a tv producer, not a philosopher, or great political or religious thinker.

QFT!!!:thumbup::thumbup:

horatio 06-19-2010 02:28 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kevin (Post 304534)
Well, the timeline does fit with the creation of DS9 circa 1991 - which went in a whole direction viewed as very un-Gene Roddenberry and un-Star Trek by some fans because of where it went.

GR had several edicts that a lot of writers didn't like (Ronald D. Moore has been relatively vocal about them) but had to work with that fit his vision of Trek - or at least the one he was having that week due to his ever revisionist nature - so I think there's some slight merit in the darkness claim. Just a skoosh.

The terrorism thing? Yeah, not sure where he was on that at all.

Sure, DS9 had its dark moments as did ENT but in between there was VOY and four movies which don't fit the description of the article. One can blame Berman for many things but not for not having taken good care of the grail.

I have no high opinion of Moore, not because he isn't a good writer, he is in fact a very good one, but because he couldn't grasp the basic idea of Trek.
I am a hardcore Roddenberryian in this respect, if you cannot imagine the future to be better than today, don't work for this franchise. Of course this doesn't imply that you cannot or should not do dark stories, on the contrary.

Roddenberry wasn't a revisionist, TNG was merely a closer match for his vision than TOS. Ask any writer, the second book is usually better than the first one.

kevin 06-19-2010 05:43 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by horatio (Post 304543)
Sure, DS9 had its dark moments as did ENT but in between there was VOY and four movies which don't fit the description of the article. One can blame Berman for many things but not for not having taken good care of the grail.

I have no high opinion of Moore, not because he isn't a good writer, he is in fact a very good one, but because he couldn't grasp the basic idea of Trek.
I am a hardcore Roddenberryian in this respect, if you cannot imagine the future to be better than today, don't work for this franchise. Of course this doesn't imply that you cannot or should not do dark stories, on the contrary.

Roddenberry wasn't a revisionist, TNG was merely a closer match for his vision than TOS. Ask any writer, the second book is usually better than the first one.

I don't think that Moore found it difficult to write for Trek per se - not any more than anyone else who wanted to explore the opposite side of the GR deal like Ira Steven Behr - but due to GR's lack of thought about how things tended to work it created valid issues.

We know that GR was the ideas man - he really didn't want to get bogged down in the minute details of how his future society really worked on more practical levels. He just wanted people to buy his proposition and not ask questions about it. But of course, fans ultimately start to ask such questions.

The problem is, of course, that as audiences develop (from the relatively simpler expectations of the 1960s) and as TV in general was required to provide more 'realistic' and/or gritty depictions of the environments they portrayed this is where GR's lack of details fell considerably short and left other writers with the problem of how to bridge the basic notions with the realities of writing TV shows in the 80s, 90s and beyond.

I can understand the frustrations of that. It's not that it's limiting, but it's very undefined and lacks clear guidance from the universe creator.

Even taking a very basic one like the 'no money' idea.

Great idea, we focus on other aspects of life's possibilities in the future. (I admit, I don't quite 'buy' all GR's ideas from TOS/TNG anymore the way I did as a youth (and even TBH) actively dislike one or two of them nowadays in respects of some of his notions about how humanity/Earth etc are in the future, but that's my issue, not anyone else's).

But then GR goes and contradicts himself by having many TOS/TNG episodes allude to economies, money and financial systems (even corporate entities) and that do seem to exist within the Federation. So it creates this 'which is it?' question that have to be worked around. To me, that's revising both himself and his ideas to suit later decisions made in his mind.

Botany Bay 06-19-2010 10:00 AM

I am afraid the article is right about Star Treks concern with terrorism since the late 1980ies. There where countless TNG-Episodes dealing with terrorism, even in the early seasons of TNG.

In the first season there where many episodes dealing with rebellion, like 'Angel One' and 'Heart of Glory', or weapons trade, like in 'Arsenal of Freedom'.

In the second season there was 'Samaritan Snare', which dealt with development aid for an underdeveloped culture, who tried to aquire weapons by taking hostages (stupid Paklets, stupid :D).

Thats when 'Star Trek : The Final Frontier' hit the theaters, giving us a gang of religious fanatics who take hostages and hijack the Starship Enterprise to meet their creator.

In season three of TNG it was 'The Vengeance Factor', dealing with tribal warfare and blood feud in an assymetric war between a technically advanced and a pirate like rogue faction.
Then there was 'The Hunted', sporting a Space-Vietnam-Veteran turning into a "Terrorist".

The first real Terrorism-Episode was 'High Ground' in the same season, again about assymetric civil war between an advanced ruling faction and a rogue organization, operating from the underground. The episodes trailer even opened with a terrorist bomb attack against a public square not unlike a nowadays shopping mall.

In the fourth season there was 'Legacy', about a civil war fought with guerilla tactics, but most important, there was 'The Wounded' which got the whole Cardassian-Bajor-Marquis-Ark getting started.

In season five (shortly after Roddenberrys death) this ark got about terrorism very explicitly with the episode 'Ensign Ro'. That episode had the Enterprise hunt down terrorists and even implemented metaphorical similarities to the Israel-Palestine-Complex (namely depicting Bajorans as refugees, living in desert camps and one of their "Terrorist" Leaders wearing a tunic and a headscarf).

I think people allways forget that the tragic surprise of 9/11 was in its shocking magnitude, but not in the fact of a terrorist attack itself, because terrorism was indeed a very present phenomenon and topic throughout the 80ies and 90ies. It was politics to make us all forget that long history that came before and lead to 9/11.

Roddenberrys TNG does indeed show parts of the impact terrorism and the mid-east-conflicts had on western popular culture throughout the 80ies and 90ies.

kevin 06-19-2010 10:15 AM

Good observations!


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