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Old 11-19-2013, 10:42 PM
samwiseb samwiseb is offline
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I just finished S1 a few days ago, and while I think I have a new appreciation for some of the things they tried to do (the new BluRay interviews are rather enlightening) I am overall not that much more impressed with the series than I was watching it in 2001.

I don't think they changed enough with this series. I could tell they were obviously trying to change things up, however the things they seemed to feel constituted major change I never felt constituted major change. Too many of the episodes could just as easily have worked on any prior ST series (as I think Braga himself humbly admits in one of the commentaries) and too often the conversations seem like recycled ST dialogue. It makes little difference whether the technology was shields or polarized hull plating, since to me the terms are interchangeable (I'm sure anyone who has studied the Technical Manuals could prove me wrong, however I'm afraid I've never been that type of fan. I'm more the type who collects soundtracks, and DS9/VOY/ENT have never been among them).

And yes, I do dislike what they did with the Vulcans, but not because I am resistant to change. Hearing B&B talk about what they did, I even agree with it in theory. But in the first place, I've never felt like Second Generation Trek from TNG on ever had a real handle on how Vulcans were supposed to act (though I think they actually got it right with the ambassador in 'Fallen Hero', refreshingly enough). And coming out of the pilot, their bigotry still feels excessively forced and could be dialed back a couple notches. Is vegetarianism really a prerequisite criteria for a civilized culture in their eyes? Seems more than a little narrow-minded. Why not veganism? Topping it off, their lead spokesperson with her disdainful, condescendingly over-articulated nuances ("Space, is, very, big. Captain.") still recalls Seven of Nine more closely than I would like even after all these years.

There are plenty of enjoyable episodes; I dare say most of the season is 'enjoyable' to some extent, assuming enjoyable is really good enough after fourteen consecutive years. To say that it has good and bad episodes like any other series I think misses the point. Even in Fall of 2001, I didn't believe we really needed a fourth Second Generation ST series. A good episode of ENT could never be as 'fresh' (there, I've finally given up and used that word for lack of any other) as a good episode of TNG. Anyone who had never seen ST could sit down and watch both episodes, and automatically know which one came first even if you took out all the fx. And looking back over the past three months, there are two eps (maybe three) that I think are unconditionally good: the aforementioned 'Fallen Hero', 'Breaking the Ice', and (maybe) 'Cold Front'. Everything else had something in it that felt tired or recycled, no matter how good it otherwise was.
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