Interview: Seth MacFarlane Talks Mission Of ‘The Orville’ And Defends Star Trek: TNG’s Replicators

During The Orville media tour and set visit, TrekMovie had a chance to speak briefly with the show’s creator and star Seth MacFarlane. We of course talked about the show, but also talked about Star Trek and specifically his love for Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Captain Ed Mercer and his mission

I know you do a legendary William Shatner as Captain Kirk, and you are a huge fan of Star Trek: The Next Generation so I thought your Captain Mercer was going to be cut from one of those molds, but after watching the pilot he seems to be a totally different kind of captain. The way he talks about becoming a captain being his dream it made me wonder, is Ed you? Are you playing a version of yourself?

In some ways. It is a character that does have to be good at his job to do this kind of thing. I personally would never want to go into space. I am very happy with other people going and taking pictures and bringing back rocks and things. But there are certain elements of the guy who is thrilled to be there and yet at the same time is struggling with whether or not he deserves to be there. Which is something I haven’t really seen.

We have seen the Kirk approach, the Picard approach, the Janeway approach. These are all paragons of nobility. And you think “What if Albert Brooks was in that chair?” It’s just a tone that I haven’t seen on a show like this that brings it into a real, grounded place that isn’t quite so Gary Cooper. That was part of what led me to bring the ex-wife (Commander Kelly Grayson, played by Adrianne Palicki) into the equation. Because the side-by-side chairs and the constant presence of that relationship makes every scenario, no matter how insane or out there or crazy sci-fi, it just grounds it all. It constantly reminds you, here are two very human people.

You mention those Star Trek captains. With those captains and ships there were clear missions given. What is the mission of the U.S.S. Orville?

We say it in the pilot, that it is an exploratory vessel. I like the simplicity of that, because it keeps your options option. You can be ferrying people. You can be on a rescue mission. You can just be out there mapping or searching for new stuff. I like the simplicity and the breadth of that classification and that to me is what we have locked in on.

Seth MacFarlane as Capt. Ed Mercer with his ex-wife, Commander Kelly Grayson (Adrianne Palicki) and bridge crew of The Orville

In defense of TNG’s optimism and replicators

You have talked a lot about an optimistic sci-fi show and there have been comparisons to Star Trek. There have been five Star Trek shows, but there seems to be something specifically Star Trek: The Next Generation about this. Would you say that’s fair?

Yeah. [laughs]

You even hired the Next Generation cinematographer [Marvin Rush]…

We brought on a lot of alum from that show. In the world of sci-fi there are a handful of franchises that have done that thing where they reach the broadest of audiences imaginable. Twilight Zone has done that, Star Wars has done that, and some incarnations of Star Trek have done that. For me The Next Generation is the show that did it the most. It really tapped into an audience that wasn’t necessarily there for the sci-fi, they were there for the people.

The inspiration I took most from that show was – it was more of a production design thing – if you are in space for a long period of time, you cannot really be in a dark, dimly lit submarine or you are going to go crazy. If you are out in a tin can for long stretches it has got to feel like a Four Seasons. There has to be houseplants and sofas and carpeting. It has to be a place that is really comfortable, or the psychology of it just doesn’t work. You would go batshit if you are out there for too long.

That show had a lot of rules for the writers. I am sure you have heard of the Roddenberry Rules. Recently Ron Moore talked about how he felt the replicators destroyed drama. You have replicators [called “synthesizers”] on The Orville. How do you feel about living in a similar universe where there is no want and no material need?

With a show like this, there are certain concessions you have to make. I don’t entirely agree with that. I think the replicator was one of the greatest inventions because the replicator more than any other device allowed the philosophy of that show to exist. How is there no money? Of course you wouldn’t need any money because you have f—king replicators.

More than any other device on the show – more than the warp drive – it was the replicators that defined the social reality of that series. I respectfully disagree with Ron Moore, who happens to be one of my favorite writers.

Seth MacFarlane, Adrianne Palicki, Halston Sage, Penny Johnson Jerald, guest star Brian George and guest star Christine Corpuz in The Orville

Will Fox give The Orville a chance?

Fox has a history of taking chances on sci-fi shows, but they also have a history of killing them off after a season or maybe not even letting them finish a season. What do you think are the parameters for your success to get to a second season? Are they going to give you time to find an audience?

That is a very good question. I don’t know the answer to that. I think my long history with Fox makes it more likely that they will give it every chance that it deserves up until the point where it doesn’t make sense anymore.

I think if we are doing OK, but not great, I think they will give us the benefit of the doubt to grow. If we come out of the box huge, that is obviously a no brainer. It’s hard to say. If we are in that middle area where we are still finding ourselves and there seems to be something great, but we just haven’t hit on it yet? Then I think that is the hardest area to be in because how hard do you fight. I am hoping that we come out of the box that we are so different than anything that is on TV today that we hit our stride on day one, but you never know.

The U.S.S. Orville

360 Inside Look Promo

The Orville premieres on Fox on Sunday, Sept. 10 at 8:00 pm eastern, following a following NFL doubleheader. The second episode airs the following Sunday at the same time following another NFL doubleheader. It then moves to its regular Thursday time slot on September 21st at 8 pm.

For more check out this new 360 degree promo with Seth MacFarlane and the cast giving an overview of the show and characters (turn around to activate the viewscreen which starts a new behind the scenes video).

For more on The Orville, check out TrekMovie’s Orville category for all of our coverage.


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Any idea how this will air in the UK?

Not that I know of. I’ve been trying to find out as well. I’ve even e-mailed them.


@Caleb P.
There’s been no word whatsoever about this being on Netflix in the UK (or any other carrier). Stop spreading lies.


That may have been a joke. Not a bad one imho.

Seth McFarlane is not a very strong actor. I think he should have cast his role to somebody else. I think his ego seems to go in the way of his work sometimes. I don’t think this show is going to last very long.

MacFarlane is going to rock this roll. He will be amazing…

Sometimes it’s about the personality of the actor, not strictly their actions ability. Think Jerry Seinfeld.

I have to agree wi Seth about the replicators. I love the way that society works in Star Trek, working for self fulfillment instead of money. The only way that really works is if you have the replicator. I don’t think the replicator really limits anything. Enterprise and TOS also seemed to have an unlimited supply of anything they could need. If the writers want to do a story where the crew needs to obtain something, it just needs to be something that can’t be replicated.

@Legate — but if the replicator can create anything, then what would they ever have to go out seeking to obtain? It’s a terrible crutch that eliminates much of the drama and jeopardy in a dramatic series. One of the reasons why I’m glad DISC is set in the time period it is. Roddenberry didn’t create the transporter because it fulfilled a vision of his future, but rather a cost saving measure to prevent the space ship from landing on the planet every episode, as I t often undercuts the drama from a story where it can literally snatch the hero out of the jaws of death.

Since when has Star Trek been about obtaining objects? Look, it’s a bunch of people encountering weird things in space. Just like a bunch of kids gone exploring the woods, finding something, poking it with a stick and seeing what happens. Simple as that. Replicator or no replicator, you can still tell that story.

@NameGoesHere — well if that’s all that happens in that story with the kids, it’d be pretty boring. So in typical fashion, let’s say they poke the thing with the stick, and it attaches to one of their faces and the clock is ticking to get it off before it kills them. Well no worry, because the replicator can produce whatever tool or compound is necessary to remove the thing. Story is over in minutes.

First, they will have to figure WHAT tool or compound they have to use.
Case in point – VOY: “Nothing Human”

By this measure (say) Top Gun couldn’t show “drama or jeopardy” because aircraft carriers have machine shops.

@The River Temarc — actually no. The replicators can create anything out of nothing. So the only way to tell a dramatic story is to come up with BS reason to take the replicator out of commission. Machine shops are limited in what they can do, they have to have material and supplies, which they can run out of creating drama such that the planes can’t fly — which is NOT what TOP GUN was about. Try to sustain TOP GUN as a series and see what kind of problems you run into. But here’s a case in point — TOS “Devil In The Dark” — the Horta stole the colony’s reactor. So Scotty had to come up with some sort of “patch”. TNG would have just ordered the replicator to produce a new one and problem solved, Horta murdered. In order for TNG to tell the same story, they would have had to come up with some BS reason why the replicators couldn’t reproduce the missing reactor part. And that’s the point here.

Replicators only work if there is energy to run them. In early Voyager they were running low on reserves and hence that gave us Neelix’s galley.. TNG would have them warp to the nearest starbase if there was any problems.

“Capt’n, our replicator doesn’t have schematics for those old reactors. I’ll gonna have to design a replacement one from scratch.” Here, problem solved. Of course you can’t use this in every episode, that would be ridiculous – but every once in a while, it works. And it even makes sense, because why would a starship replicator carry detailed construction schematics of an obsolete terrestrial power reactor, right?

The problem is not replicators, the problem is writers being too lazy to accommodate replicators in their stories (except as a glorified food dispenser). The Star Trek world is a decidedly post-scarcity society, yet writers can’t seem to get past their 20th century mindset in order to work with the fact.

@Paul — To you it makes sense, because you’re trying to make an exception for one unique example. They carry detailed schematics of an obsolete reactor because they apparently carry the sum of all knowledge in their database, including a horrible novel from the 20th Century about the Hotel Royale. You can make a case for anything, but the reality is, the presence of the replicator means they can solve virtually any problem they need to without any cost or effort. This is the same problem they got themselves into with the transporters, and constantly had to come up with reasons why they couldn’t use the transporter as they had previously to solve the same problem, and many other technologies they invented in the 24th century. The reason people were upset with ST09s trans-warp beaming was not because they did it, but the implications of that technology now existing.

Curious Cadet,

Re: The replicators can create anything out of nothing.

Not even Genesis could do that. My understanding is the replicators take available matter and strips it down to sorted atoms then transmutes them into whatever atoms are needed if there aren’t enough of a particular one needed and then assembles them one atom at a time building it into whatever’s needed on transporter timescales. IBM has some gizmo now, its name escapes me, that it’s been using for positioning atoms for electron microscope portrait shots. And they’ve actually used it to assemble nano structures of atoms that spell out IBM.

But it should be fun to see what Memory Alpha has to say about it:

“A replicator was a device that used transporter technology to dematerialize quantities of matter and then rematerialize that matter in another form.” — Memory Alpha

Well, I don’t necessarily agree. Given the level of 24th century–cheap, abundant energy, AI, efficiencies in producing goods that would eclipse those of today–the time of TNG would be one of almost unimaginable prosperity by our standards, even without the replicator. What’s truly discouraging is how much more we could be doing right now to insure a certain base level of human prosperity and sustainability, even without the replicator.

It’s science fiction communism. If all is free, why do anything at all? Why the hell would you want to be agent expendable cleaning out warp drives? Why would you want a boss yelling at you for not working hard enough? For that matter, who the hell would want the responsibility of being a manager? There is no payoff, there is nothing to differentiate yourself from the guy living next door. And then you have to come up with all kinds of reasons why xyz can’t be replicated, which is a bullshit argument to start with. Either all can be replicated or nothing, seeing that all are the same from an atomic point of view. For that matter, why not just replicate people? A society where only the brightest are replicated over and over again, a clone world through replication.

@Bert — sums it up pretty well. TNG sort of shot themselves in the foot with the Picard/Q heart episode where he ended up being a tedious little man in a boring job as a reward for playing his youth rationally. Why would anyone want that, especially by the time they lived to Picards age? There is an argument that says Starfleet gives people a chance to explore space “safely” such that doing any job at all is worth giving up a life of ease, and there will always be those who seek out such opportunities. There are those today who will do whatever job available for the opportunity to spend time in Antarctica — a place for many is out of their reach otherwise. Perhaps that is the case for Starfleet. Those stationed for long terms in remote outposts could be presumed to be paying their dues to get a more choice assignment and more opportunity. In which case, how could there be anything other than conflict arise out of those who feel they’ve been left behind or have given too much of themselves for too long without any reward? And then there are those who just want to get away from it all. Cant say that sounds like an ideal cadet, but maybe the percentage who are willing to sacrifice themselves for the opportunity to serve ends up being large enough that only the most eager and self sacrificing among them are able to join such that Starfleet is fully staffed with inky the best and most appropriate people.

What a bunch of materialistic capitalist BS- people would work because they love what they because they have the choice.
They would be fulfilled by knowledge & achievement not accumulating wealth & the illusion of power.

No they don’t. People work together because of a reason. Either survival or money coupled with status and power. Most people today work because they must, not because they want to. You are just perpetuating nonsense. Go to Africa or Asia then ask people if they work because they ‘love to do it’. Even in ye olden days, people did not work together because of altruism but because of survival. Even then the powerful ruled over the weak. And when people settled down into agrarian societies, the same thing happened. What is the net worth of a cow then? Three sheep? Who decides? Capitalism has got nothing to do with this at all, it is a plain and simple fact that human beings want to differentiate themselves from other human beings. Either by belonging to specific subgroups and/or through the accumulation of monetary means, power, a car, a house, you name it and it’s there. In a society where all is free, where all can materialize with a snap of your fingers, where there is nothing to strive for personally, nothing would happen but stagnation.

“…it is a plain and simple fact that human beings want to differentiate themselves from other human beings…”

This is your answer right here. Even in a post-scarcity society, people will keep working – and they will strive to excel – in order to differentiate themselves. The propaganda and peer pressure will make sure of it, the same way the propaganda and peer pressure made people line up at army recruitment offices.

And to persuade those who don’t respond to propaganda, a system of “credits” will be in place. As in, money to buy luxuries. Faster travel, better accommodation, unreplicated / hand-crafted goods. Do you think that even in 23rd century, EVERYBODY can afford an apartment at the Russian Hill? Of course not – even with 23rd century architecture, there’s simply not enough room for that. But Kirk can afford it. And do you know why? Because he’s a a damn starship captain, that’s why. Sure, *everybody* gets a guaranteed high-quality free housing and free wholesome food and free clothing and free space travel; but only those who earn credits can afford to live in luxury locations, to travel in express starships, to drink imported alien booze, to have their food farm-grown and their clothing hand-made, to adorn their housing with priceless antiques.

Post-scarcity economy is not about evening out all the differences. It’s about raising the lowest common denominator to allow everybody to live a full life regardless of their work status. But if you want anything *above* the lowest common denominator, you still have to earn it.

Bert Beukema,

Re: People work together because of a reason.

This preposterous nonsense can’t possibly be true as all apes’ offspring don’t pop out of the womb ready for work. Their babies are born incapable of contributing anything to their parents survival and yet their parents care for them regardless. And yet, even though human babies sit like lumps incapable of anything that even resembles work for years, babies don’t stagnate.

Well, I don’t happen to think that anyone should be considered “agent expendable” regardless of their economic station, but that’s just me. As for the rest of it, are you really saying that you see no point to being a productive individual unless there are negative (homelessness, starvation) or positive (you get to play with bigger toys than your neighbor) economic consequences associated with it? If so, how sad for you!

Replication is either possible or it’s not, but that’s a matter of science and technology, not Karl Marx. Universal prosperity should be a reasonable aspiration for any moral person (I’m excluding Ayn Rand here), and the whole point of the replicator is to create wealth, not redistribute it. If that prospect disturbs you because a world without poor people wouldn’t be one that allowed you to feel special and superior–well, with all due respect, that’s your problem, and the rest of us shouldn’t allow it to become ours.

Yeah dude. That’s the primary notion of communism. We are all workers and we are all the same. There are no classes, there is no-one better than the other. And all are paid the same salary. You work for the collective not for yourselves. It doesn’t matter if you work hard or do almost nothing, your pay is still the same. Guess what that lead to in communist countries. Starvation is what happened. Stagnation is what happened. Because we are not all the same, it is one of the primary human characteristics.

I did not say nor did I even imply any of the things you have just said. That is merely projection by your own personal feelings, it is a negative quality to say the least. Don’t project your own feelings on others please. What I said is why anyone, given the choice and complete lack of common motivation such as the need to provide would even think of doing filthy, hazardous, menial, or otherwise, jobs somewhere way down the ladder. Having to work long hours, be filthy all the time, chances of losing life or limb and whatever. Guess what. Nobody would do that willingly. Not in a society where all is free, where all can be ‘replicated’ and where there is no money. It would be the same as winning the lottery when you are a toilet cleaner.

This kind of babble just shows a distinct lack of knowledge into human motivation. It’s all nice to think of utopian societies where all people work together altruistically, smiling all day. But that is not how societies work. Unless you wish to impose some sort of cultural dictatorship, indoctrinating and brainwashing people all day long like North Korea of course. Where people are more akin to programmed robots than actual human beings. Is that what you are proposing? The altruistic dictatorship?

Bert Beukema,

Which is it? If people are not all alike then why do you turn around and claim that they are all alike in that none of them could possibly enjoy cleaning toilets?

Your attempt at reasoning is circular nonsense.

“filthy, hazardous, menial,” are subjective and culturally-based non-universal concepts and varies for people who are not all alike.

“Nobody would do that willingly.” — Bert Beukema

Again you nonsensically pronounce uniformity in humans you consider non-uniform.

So what exactly are you suggesting here? That humans have evolved into slaves and slavemasters because we need to force people to clean toilets as there are no people obsessed with cleanliness that would do it in real populations of people?

I am at a real loss as to what essential characteristic it is that you regard makes humans dissimilar in all your uniform pronouncements? Is it the social non-science concept of race?

Bert Beukema,

Re: communism

Why, when I am very clearly trying to argue for no economic based systems at all based on what existed before their invention, you keep trying to drag other ones into this? Communism did not exist prior to kings and other rulers putting their images on metal discs.

Again, you project what you feel instead of what I wrote. You seem quite apt at this. You also seem to want to make a point, please do so but not at the expense of what I wrote. I do recommend that you reread and try again. To give you a primer; we are not alike. And although in the utopian society you would like to project there might be some who would enjoy cleaning out your dirty toilet, I would hazard a guess that 99,99% of people would not. Especially not if they do not have any reason to do so. If there is no payoff to them other than them looking at your shiny toilet and silently applauding themselves.

In our current society model people clean your dirty toilet because you pay them and they need that payment to provide for themselves, their families and their education. To make sure that their children don’t have to clean your damned dirty toilet. Don’t kid yourself, most people who do this work do not enjoy it. In fact, many people don’t enjoy their work period. In your utopian society these things do not exist anymore. There is no need, you are provided for.

Thus what you are actually suggesting is that in your utopian society people would actually beg to do something, anything. And those who lack the skills or perhaps even the intelligence to be part of the great way up, they would beg to clean your dirty toilet. For no other reason than to do something, that is their happiness model, their maslow pyramid upside down. Thus even in your utopian model of ‘no economics, no elites’ you see that this is essentially exactly the same. Just without payment. But not because of an intrinsic want but a base line need. Again, that is not an utopia but a dystopia.

// Why, when I am very clearly trying to argue for no economic based systems at all based on what existed before their invention, you keep trying to drag other ones into this? Communism did not exist prior to kings and other rulers putting their images on metal discs. //

You really don’t know how to read don’t you? Did you know that the early Islamic coinage did not have a King on it, just the Islamic prayer? It is a nonsense argument. However deep into human history you go, you will always find economics. Economy is not an invention of Kings or some elites. Even when humans were just small bands, there was always an economic system. And there were always ‘elites’, the rulers and the ruled over. Don’t be a smart aleck here man, it makes you sound like a cultural relativist.

Bert Beukema,

You really don’t know how to screen out your confirmation biases which really shouldn’t surprise.

Again, I remind you there is no evidence of your working Economic system claims for humans in human evolution:

We ignore what doesn’t fit with our biases – even if it costs us:

Contrary to what you continually claim, humans have NOT evolved to make any such system that you can name work for us on sound scientific or mathematical principles. We are evolved to lose money when new information that profits us, as will arise in the due course of science, comes along in favor of old systems that lose us money and costs us to our survival detriment which refutes your claim. Working economics system have not evolved with humans to benefit their survival because humans have evolved to make such systems fail to profit them as they favor unprofitable losing confirmation biased thinking over profitable science.

Did you know that citing Islamic coins which didn’t come along until long after the first kings struck their coins is a nonsense response and/or attempt at counterpoint? And is as pointless a tangent as saying that the U.S. printed Indian Head pennies.

Bert Beukema,

Re: If all is free, why do anything at all?

Because, as the universe has amply demonstrated for billions of years and life on this planet has demonstrated for millions: The processes causing stars, planets, star systems, life, etc. to come into being don’t wait for humans to come along and think up money and economics before getting those things done. There is no why; just do.

Yeah. They also are not human beings. Ergo, your response makes as much sense as saying ‘light from the sun is free’. You’re right but it doesn’t prove any point.

Bert Beukema,

Re: They also are not human beings

That only makes sense if you somehow believe that human beings did not arise from the same cosmological processes, or worse that we somehow thought up ourselves.

Humans from the Earth, like light from the Sun, are free. They both came into existence free of any numismatical based “cost” benefit ratio. Humans, like all life on the planet, do things because that’s what they evolved to be, doers. That some human thought up money didn’t erase millions of years of evolution. The fact that our ancient ancestors survived well enough before money’s invention that we could eventualy spawn from that survival proves it. Also we, like all primates, are evolved to be curious. Modern humans would find it impossible to sit like a lump when everything is free because we couldn’t help ourselves, because of our innate curiosity, we’d have to try to find things out — like why is everything free?

And you have the cart before the horse. The people that you see that sit like lumps weren’t the cause of numistical economics being invented, but rather, they are a symptom of its creation for the unbalanced maximum benefit of a select few with just enough crumbs distributed to the non-elite to keep these elites’ shell game going.

LOL. That’s a lot of words to essentially say nothing. Or that you dislike something but are so wrapped up in writing words you forgot the essence of it. Modern economics evolved during roughly 50.000 years. It did not appear suddenly, it evolved. It evolved from survival based economics to agrarian to a service oriented society. There has always been trade, there have always been ‘elites’. Whether they be the strongest, the fastest or the smartest, they were there from the start. Don’t patronize me with your try at elucidated wordplay, try to say something meaningful and knowledgeable instead.

What a bunch of materialistic capitalist BS- people would work because they love what they because they have the choice.
They would be fulfilled by knowledge & achievement not accumulating wealth & the illusion of power.

If you had the choice not to clean my toilet, you would not do it. You make no sense. If the human mindframe were like you say it is, such a society would have arisen already. Many times. It hasn’t. In over 50.000 years of human history, it never ever happened. Altruism is all nice and cosy to talk about, but count how many truly altruistic thing you have ever done in your life. I mean truly altruistic, without any personal motivation, gain or otherwise.

Replicators are not the problem, writers with no appreciation of the Star Trek Universe & Philosophy making excuses are the problem

Obviously you make me laugh. Replicators and everything else in Star Trek was created by writers. So if the writers say that replicators can now replicate humans, so it will be. It is all fiction.

Bert Beukema,

Re: It is all fiction

You mean like 3D printers which very likely will evolve into replicators?

And you are aware real 3D printers are now assembling human organs for transplants. Thus, it isn’t that big a leap to envision them eventually assembling entire humans.

No. Why are you people so apt at projecting whatever it is you want to say instead of actually reading what is really written? Try again.

Bert Beukema

If you find yourself failing at comunicating to “people” who speak English while you are speaking Spanish, I don’t believe the solution is ask them in Spanish why they don’t learn Spanish?

Of course it takes place in the 25th Century, which is what the ‘secret majority’ of Trekkers want Star Trek to do.

Should be playing this straight. I can’t see it working as ironic comedy. Who’s going to watch this, disaffected Trekkies? Not a big target audience. I predict a flop.

I was convinced that Mork and Mindy would be a big flop, too. You never know.

Different era, different circumstances, really hard to compare the two

MacFarlane’s comment about never wanting to go to space reminds me of the late Isaac Asimov who talked about his fear of flying in his memoirs.

“if you are in space for a long period of time, you cannot really be in a dark, dimly lit submarine or you are going to go crazy.”
Thank you! Now we have to get this memo to Starfleet.

@Perplex — right, just like those working in a dark dimly lit unlimited powered nuclear submarine. That must be why so many submarine crews go insane and have to be replaced constantly. Except they don’t. There are many environments one has to work, for numerous justifiable reasons, and spend their entire days which are not hospitable. As long as there’s a place they can go and relax between work shifts, like 10 Forward. Not to mention THE HOLODECK!!! So there’s no reason for the bridge, or other tactical work environments to be illuminated brightly to keep the crew from going crazy.

Except US Navy subs are typically out for only 3 months. 6 months at the most. Source:

A starship might be out for years.

@Charles — the sub stays at sea for months at a time, sometimes without any break. Trek ships stop at ports, take shore leave, and generally interact with the rest of the universe. They all have their luxurious quarters, and recreation spaces on the ship. The point is, while I agree the ship should be as comfortable as possible for those on board, that doesn’t mean the bridge should be a brightly lit Hilton hotel lobby lounge. Perhaps that’s the rub here — they”re all looking at screens and what appears to a giant view of space all day long. The bridge shouldn’t be a comfortable bright space, but rather designed to focus the crew on their jobs and make working with those screens and the subject of their attention in the most comfortable way. I’m sure MacFarlane has spent days in an edit bay, and dubbing stage, working in his project. Those rooms are dimly lit, and made comfortable for the type of work they are doing all day, which is staring at screens and dark images. Brightly lit rooms distract from the work at hand and produce eye fatigue. This is the issue I have with his argument. And frankly it’s an issue I have TNG which he’s ripping off.

I loved that concept of stopping at ports, taking shore leave on a planet, generally interacting with the universe. Holodecks severely curtailed this necessity. The endpoint would be opening up a chain of holo-theaters on Earth, no need to go anywhere

Nuclear subs put to sea for months at a time. Not years, or (in the case of TNG) possibly decades.

Michael Hall,

Re: …possibly decades.

For the life of me, I can’t see how you possibly arrived at that conclusion for TNG. Even if you somehow don’t consider the E-D orbiting a Federation planet as the equivalent of pulling into port, there’s no way that I can account for your belief that it took them decades between visits to spacestations, spacedocks, and starbases? I mean in the very first episode they pulled into Farpoint Station.

I mean ships are still in the water when they pull into port but they most definitely aren’t considered at sea.

For the life of me, I can’t understand why you would think that an occasional port stop or shore leave would make up for decades otherwise spent in cramped, dreary spaces with no relief. Klingons might be okay with that sort of regime, but in general, not people. In any case, this is just a theoretical discussion on a topic in which none of us is expert. No need to get so argumentative.

Michael Hallichael Hall,

Re: Decades?

What cramped ship are we discussing here and who’s giving them decades long missions? Because The Es that I knew had half decades long assignments which after their mission end the ship was cleared out and refurbished from stem to stern in spacedock before the next tour.

As a submarine officer I can tell you that the retention rates in the submarine force are horrible. The retention bonus for a first tour submariner is 35k/year (in addition to the 100k+ year). As a note I did not sign a contract.

@sting2063 — granted, but thats not necessarily because they have to work in a dimly lit space, it’s that outside of work there’s not much else to do. Starships have Holodecks for cryin out loud.

How many submarines go on 5 year missions though? I think what he’s saying is the crazy amount of time they spend in space although yes you’re right I think something like the holodeck is a definitely a big plus to keep your sanity.

But I really loved the beginning of Beyond seeing how mundane and tedious space travel would probably feel after a few years…and no holodeck for them. :(

I tend to agree with MacFarlane on this, which is why TNG’s “Holiday Inn aesthetic” never bothered me like it did some fans. If you have the luxury of making the ships livable and even comfortable, why wouldn’t you do it?

That said, I’m glad that Discovery is going for something a little grittier and more functional.

Gritty is not functional.

What part of ‘and’ did you not get?

Michael Hall,

Besides, when it came to ships in Trek with tremendous waste of space, nothing in The Federation holds a candle to Balok’s Fesarius.

?? We never saw the interior of the Fesarius proper, just the command ship, which was cramped. So I don’t get your point.

Biggest space-waster in Trek history: the J.J.-Prize

Michael Hall,

The command ship wasn’t cramped for Balok. But as for the Fesarius proper Balok said he was the sole crew and fairly intimates that its HUGE size was only for the purpose of Theatrical intimidation like his alter ego.

‘[Balok] I have no crew, Doctor. I run everything, this entire complex, from this small ship.” – Jerry Sohl, ‘The Corbormite Maneuver’, STAR TREK

Much better point of view than the DIS makers for sure. I really hate their dark and gritty obsession. If the trailers and interviews are not totally misleading, I will enjoy The Orville much more than DIS.

But that’s not “Gritty & realistic” which is cool atm so who cares about making sense.

Yeah and if it’s not, then it is also shite in your opinion, right? I mean, you do hate the movies right? The ones with all the bright colors and stuff? Also not Trek, right? As if TNG was a role model for nice and bright. It looked like a goddamn 70’s living room. They even had a lava lamp. Jeez.

I am annoyed by your replies

Yeah, he’s pretty unnecessarily caustic, isn’t he?

Premieres September 10th at 8 PM. So it will be competing with Wrath of Khan? Well, I know where I’ll be that evening.

Thanks for pointing out that it’s on after NFL. I guess I need to pad my recording.

Here’s hoping the game doesn’t go to overtime!

This Isn’t Star Trek!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Nothing escapes your tractor beam.

@MikeB – Truly, you have a dizzying intellect.

Was it supposed to be?

But its the closest thing to Star Trek being produced atm

^ Wow. I didn’t know that we defined Star Trek by the Ferengi comedy episodes now. You know, the ones that everybody really loves. *sigh*

Bert Beukema,

By acknowledging that the Ferengi comedy episodes exist and are a part of STAR TREK, you have done absolutely nothing to contest Trekboi89’s contention.

What they should do to confound expectations is show in the first dozen that he really CAN carry the dramatic weight … then kill his character off in the finale, letting him go back to b-t-s work for later seasons.


Sounds great but it’s too risky for a network show.

…with the cancellation of Dark Matter, there is even more riding on this show!
I can’t wait to see this show succeed in a big way! The Orville pwns Discovery!
replicators are actually a real existing technology that is being suppressed by TPTB =(

Hating on Discovery because of what befell AXANAR is I way to go through fandom, son.

“No way to go through fandom.” Man, this posting system sucks.

…don’t blame “the system” cuz YOU suck there, “dad” [eyesroll]
now going back to ignoring your insipidly false equivocation / hypocrisy

Ehm. So a show you did not view but is an ego project by someone with a long history of immature, flat humor that pisses on your fandom ‘pwns’ another show you also did not view, but is made by a lot of people with a history of making mature drama and science fiction. That is some skewed mindset you live in buddy.

sorry, no: it’s called discernment ;-)
and no: they have a history of making nutrek, which sucks, “friend”
YOUR take on The Orville is so ill-informed that it is a lie =(

Oh obviously, I am ill informed. Wow. So, all the people involved with the new Trek series are essentially just quacks? Jeez. I’ll tell that to the guy who wrote some of the greatest Trek movies okay? My take on the Orville is based on the simple fact that nothing has any creative value; it is all just wholesale copying. Does copy paste mean creativity to you? Nothing in this property spells WOW THAT IS QUALITY AND CREATIVE! Nothing. It is just an ego project that is going to piss over your ‘beloved’ trek. You people are just very skewed and will grasp at anything that ‘resembles’ your idea of what Trek should look like. Even if it is a ripoff spoof.

I don’t know…I didn’t think his COSMOS “ego project” was half bad?

And while I certainly agree Seth is willing to take his comedy into corners I’d personally rather he wouldn’t, I think it is a total misunderstanding of the role of a parodist and satirist to claim he is purposely pissing on the fandom that he self-identifies with. It may not be with the reverence that some fans demand but it seems clear he has sincere affection for STAR TREK.

My, the grapes are sour with this one.

Just FTR, I’d be willing to bet that I volunteered more of my time to Axanar than you did, and donated a helluva lot more money besides. So it’s unfortunate from my POV that the project didn’t come to anything (I was really hoping to meet Neal Degrasse Tyson, if nothing else), but I see no point in taking out my disappointment on Discovery or those who produce it. I guess that does makes me a hypocrite.

disco appears to be nutrek (which sucks)
if cbs produced good trek, i would LOVE it
(however, they suck – see above)
also, i find your axanar story hard to believe [eyesroll]
anyhow, i’m done being mis-represented by you – grapes and all

But you still haven’t seen it. You piss on it as if vinegar runs in your blood. And why? Because it is not what you want it to be. So you promote some half-ass copycat project that will piss on your beloved Trek. It will and you know it. But you would rather stick your head in your ass and play make believe.

Perhaps you should wait being disappointed until you have actually seen the goddamn show. What is wrong with you people?

…that’s a pretty serious case of butt-hurt =(
give the orville a shot – it might help u

Why should I give a generic wholesale ripoff by a guy that has a track record of making decidedly unfunny things ‘a shot’? Because he copied your holy TNG? Because suddenly Brannon Braga is not the devil anymore, as you lot like to call him, but a saint? I don’t have any desire to see this. I am a Star Trek fan, not a fan of a creatively braindead copy / paste ‘comedy’. If I want that shite I can watch any stooopid Ferengi episode.

why r u commenting on this article, then?
that is some CHRONIC butt-hurt!
buh-bye now!

*sigh* I comment on this article to point out the lunatic hypocrisy in people such as you. Then again, the fact that the word ‘butt-hurt’ seems to be your favorite exclamation means you are just the audience for piss and poop jokes. Essentially you have progressed from being a Trek fan to a ‘Orvillie’ Without ever having seen either show.

thanks for making this comment section suck [eyesroll]

“Nothing in this property [THE ORVILLE] spells WOW THAT IS QUALITY AND CREATIVE! Nothing. It is just an ego project that is going to piss over your ‘beloved’ trek.” — Bert Beukema

“But you still haven’t seen it. You piss on it as if vinegar runs in your blood. And why? Because it is not what you want it to be.” — Bert Beukema

Does not that apply likewise to you and your THE ORVILLE estimation?

“I comment on this article to point out the lunatic hypocrisy in people such as you.” — Bert Beukema

Bert Beukema,

Re: Why should I give a generic wholesale ripoff by a guy that has a track record of making decidedly unfunny things ‘a shot’?

Because he is economically successful and prospering far more than you regardless of your estimate of the quality of his products. And I believe it was you yourself who claim people do distasteful things to enhance their prosperity. You need to study his products so that you can reverse engineer them to learn how your yourself may increase your prosperity by beating him at his own game.

How else are you going to afford those Classes so that you can better communicate to the “people” here?

Dark Matter got cancelled? Rats. I liked those characters, especially Android.

hi Marja =)
yes, bummer =( ’twas my favorite show!
BUT there’s a campaign on twitter to get netflix (or amazon, hulu?) to pick it up
also a petition on ;-) i mean =P

I for one has hope that The Orville will be good .

I commend them for doing real model work. Whatever folks say about TOS effects they always had a weight and gravity to me. I never bought any of the TNG effects and was always taken out of the moment when I saw the ship moving.

TNG used model work for their ships.

@Andy Patterson – For most, if not all, of TNG’s production run, the Enterprise was a real physical model, as were most/many of the other ships and stations. When the 1701-D “moved,” it was a camera moving past a physical model exactly as had been done all the way back to TOS.

That’s because of the strings they used.

What you drinking?

TNG used models all the way! CGI wasnt a thing until mid 90s really!


Re: CGI wasnt (sic) a thing until mid 90s really!

It was enough of a thing that they explored the possibility of using it for TNG and obviously it was a thing in 1982 when they used it in TWOK for the Genesis planet simulation.

“Eddie Milkis and I investigated the possibility of generating everything (for the new TNG series) on the computer. We had great reservations about it, because it still didn’t have the reality. The surface treatment wasn’t totally believable [remark: Justman is referring to a CGI refit-Constitution-class that was commissioned for evaluation]; we could have gotten by, it would have been acceptable, but it wasn’t satisfactory.” — Robert Justman

“…Of the Star Trek production team, David Stipes in particular, as well as – at a later time, to a somewhat lesser, more cautious degree – Mitch Suskin, Dan Curry, and Ronald B. Moore were the foremost advocates of applying CGI, Stipes already overseeing some of its earliest applications during the sixth season (92-93) of TNG. Stipes had lobbied, in vain, for a CGI version of the USS Enterprise-D during that season.” — CGI, Memory Alpha

I think the Orville has a pretty cool design. A lovely ship.

seth put A LOT of thought into it! =)
they did a nice lcars style deck plan too!
i think the orville will kick some ass! =D
seth-trekkers unite! <3

Yeah he drew a doodle. And because he is the boss that became the design. And they created a whole story about it. Wow. Really a lot of thought man.

the haters sure do love to erect lame strawmen [eyesroll]

I don’t hate it, why should I? It’s just another generic ripoff of Star Trek played for laughs, nothing creative to see here. By a guy who has a track record of really unfunny shite. We already have a Trek parody, it’s called Galaxy Quest. And even that was just allright, nothing to brag about, even with all the good actors. None of that in this show. But you lot are so damn debased that you’d rather lap up this than actual Star Trek. That says quite a lot about you folks actually.

…yeah, obviously ur not a hater [eyesroll]
go and enjoy ur corporate “star trek” TM
take ur tired-ass strawmen with u, mr. butt-hurt
and i won’t tell u what to “lap up”
(now going back to ignoring your hatred)

Ha ha ha, what are ten years old? Every movie, every tv-series is a corporate endeavor. Created to make money. Do you live in a communist sovchoz or something? The original Star Trek was cancelled because it did not make enough money. Then it was brought back after a fan campaign and still didn’t make enough money. They only made movies once they realized that, after a long time, the series had a good enough following in syndication. Meaning: enough viewers to make money off it.

Obviously, you seem to live in a dimension where this ‘Orville’ is not part of the most notorious corporate entity called FOX. Famous for killing shows after just a few episodes. Because they did not make enough money fast enough.

I also don’t ‘hate’ Orville, I simply don’t care about it. What I do care about is the blatantly hypocritical attitude by your type of ‘fan’. You are not a fan, you are an anti-fan. A big black hole of negativity.

the hateful troll says what…?

good luck with *all of that* [eyesroll]

Bert Beukema,

Re: Every movie, every tv-series is a corporate endeavor. Created to make money.

Even the majority of the product the BBC funds?

I absolutely love that viewscreen’s display of [TV-14 SLV]

Heh — okay, that was for the preview.

I look forward to seeing the show. Somehow.

@Marja — wait why is a series that’s supposed to embrace the positive enlightenment of the old Trek spirit even have a trailer that’s TV-14?

its going be huge ratings…reason cbs new star trek tv series is on the internet you have to pay to see wtf ???orville going have celebs on it from old shows of star trek patrick steward knows seth he does american dad still comes on tbs renewd to 2018…. i am going watch it all scyfy fans going watch its going get huge world ratings

@overlord — yup that’s what I’m hoping, all those old Trek actors belong on a parody of the shows we used to take seriously, not the latest installment of a franchise meant to be taken seriously. And there it will be very entertaining, and make the old fans very happy.

and this, Curious Cadet, is why you’re so awesome. Couldn’t have said it better myself.

Curious Cadet,

Odd, I didn’t have a problem taking Stewart’s old Xavier character seriously in LOGAN and based on the fact that TNG has already established his Picard character has a similar fate in store, I don’t think I’d have had any problem being entertained by his performance if it had been a Picard based tale.

No kidding. William Shatner will play a space alien who’s farts are deadly and all the anti-Discovery whiners will herald it as a great example of “Star Trek”.

Ratings could be big, we shall see.

I think the initial ratings will be good. But based on reviews, it doesnt sound like a series with staying power.

Why was that in 360° video? It just made it annoying to watch.

Well said that man! He “gets” Star Trek more than some of the less than optimum people running and writing for it.

Again Seth MacFarlane is right on the money with his observation that Star Trek had people tuning in for the characters first and foremost.

George RR Martin chipped in the other week with his tale of how Maurice Hurley wasn’t impressed by the fact he made his selling point at a job interview with him his genre credits, with Hurley telling him Star Trek was a people show far more than it was a sci-fi show. And of course Martin being flavour of the month through ‘Game of Thrones’ most people were in nodding dog mode within seconds to sneer at the sheer craziness of Hurley’s suggestion.

Thing is though, Hurley was right. Morals, meaning, heart and belonging. These are what set Star Trek apart from virtually every other science fiction show ever made.

Star Trek: Discovery may be an exceptional piece of drama, a great work of Sci-Fi, superbly acted and all the rest. I do wonder however if the producers genuinely understand just what it was that gave the franchise its X factor in the past.

Seth seems to, it’s just up in the air though whether with his only background being comedy, he’ll have the skills to pull it off.

Agree & disagree. Its silly to not hire a good writer because he’s mostly a sci fi writer. Especially when you’re making a sci fi show. And Star Trek IS a sci fi show.

If there was ONE writer, so be it. But they have multiple writers. So they should want multiple expertise.

@Shatners Bassoon — Well then there’s the line in the sand. I find none of the characters set up in THE ORVILLE in the least compelling. I don’t find the DISC characters interesting enough to find out more, especially how it ties into to canon. I find Set MacFarlane as ANY character off-putting, whereas DISC has recruited some fine talent. That said, I’m planning to watch THE ORVILLE to see how well they lampoon TNG. I LOVED Galaxy Quest, and this seems to be the next best thing, if MacFarlane can control himself and not go for the cheap sophomoric punch line evey time. I’m not expecting much from the rest of the actors and characters I’ve seen, but I don’t have to — I’m tuning in for the spectacle. DISC on the other hand, I’m planning to watch for the characters and what the talent brings to them — in much the same way Patrick Stewart kept me coming back for more TNG in the first two seasons, after I’d already decided to write it off. But again, there’s no guarantee here for either show. SPACE 1999 is a good example — they had a great cast, some great characters and a massive budget, yet that show was mostly a snooze fest. However, I watched it, for the sets, the outstanding sfx and model work, and the characters and the cast. What’s THE ORVILLE offering? Not a great cast, possibly some interesting characters, and FOX seems to be promoting the FAMILY GUY comedy angle. Am I going to get attached to the cast of characters like I did to Henry Blake and Hot Lips, and Hawkeye, and Radar in MASH, as they keep alluding? Hard to imagine at this point with this cast, but again, that’s not why I’m watching this particular show, yet.

TOS did have food synthesizers.

@Kirok — not the same thing. Those presumably took generic food stores and turned them into something more palatable, more like turning Tofu into a something that tastes like a hamburger.

Yeah. I can’t wrap my head around making something out of nothing. Might as well call it a God Machine, made by GMC (God Machine Corporation). Turn on the God Machine, issue order; “Let There Be ________(fill in the blank)”. I want something resembling technology, suggesting that a lot of intense Research & Development engineering went into it, something that requires maintenance,input from a highly-trained Machinist, frequent “fine-tuning”, re-booting, or some such kind of work going into it. And it’s got to work on MATTER; turning something into something else, in an impressive, highly technological kind of way; no Harry Potter Wands allowed.That, to me, is the difference between sci-fi and fantasy (which I also like; Harry Potter Wands allowed).

The replicator is a logical extension of transporter technology. Think about it, what does the transporter do? Take matter, break it down into energetic particles, and send those particles to another location in a high speed beam and reassemble them on the spot. They know how to reassemble the matter because the exact pattern is stored in a computer buffer so the machine knows where every atom belongs.

Once you can do that, what is stopping you from storing the patterns of items you want to make? Food, machine parts, anything? Then you pick up any old raw matter, even garbage or excrement, break it down into energetic particles, and apply the desired pattern from computer memory. Viola! Your object is delivered. It was something else, but it’s been rearranged at an atomic level into what you wanted.

It’s not magic, it’s the application of technology designed to do one thing to do a related, different thing. Once you have a transporter, you can make a replicator.

Your logic is impeccable I admit. I’m not coming at this from the standpoint of logic. I guess I’d call it aesthetics maybe? The degree of difficulty in the doing of things is too much removed. The Logical endpoint would be a “Trans-Galactic” transporter, obsoleting Star Fleet. Or we can just call it TARDIS. Throw in TimeLords, or loading an entire colony into a TARDIS the size of a phonebooth, to unload on the targetted Planet, and we’re back into fantasy. The gear, the machinery, the technology, of the doing of things is, IMO, part & parcel of sci-fi, and to put it so far into the background as to no longer be “in your face” so-to-say, is to lose something fundamental to sci-fi. Of course this is just my opinion; it’s how I feel about the subject. I think the “magic” replicators, transporters and holodecks should be lost down a memory hole, and Star Trek would be much the better for it. Again, just my opinion.


You are right about the logical extension of transporter technology, but you are mistaken about how the transporter works.

Trek’s transporters don’t send particles anywhere. They destructively breakdown the atoms on the object or person to be transporter so that they can be identified, summarized, as information and mapped digitally. That matter is sent to a transporter matter reservoir on the ship to be tapped for matter to reconstitute that which information which “beams” back to the transporter. The transporter “beam” is solely energy that reconstitutes an identical copy of the just destroyed crewman on the planet’s surface using suitable unorganized atoms available from the planet to build an identical copy.

That’s the shows’ explanation. But I’ve found it a bit of poppycock. For example, in THE CHANGELING they beam the NOMAD probe on board. That leaves a blob of the original probe’s disassembled atoms floating around in space. The episode’s resolution is they grab NOMAD with antigrav whawhosits, toss him in the transporter, and Kirk orders Scotty to transport NOMAD to “deep space, maximum dispersal!”

But NOMAD zipped them away from his original’s atom blob at warp 9, so where’d Scotty find a source of atoms in deep space to reconstitute NOMAD’s (not to mention the antigrav grabbers) transporter copy with maximum dispersal that still exploded and rocked the ship?

Free energy that there is no drama, no sci-fi at all. I’m out, removed from PVR.
Full out comedy – I’ll watch a comedy. Already did the semi comedy known as TNG.

I’d give it a chance. I intend to. Im going in with reduced expectations though because there is no reason to think it will be anything other than a lame attempt at funny parody. But it does look well made. I used to love Family Guy and American Dad so Im not against the idea of Seth’s comedy.


Did you say FREE ENERGY?
Oh, the horror! Quick, take the kinds and run for the hills!

sounds like many folk will be illegally downloading this show as FOX has missed a trick with international release ..Someone at FOX needs a good kicking for this mistake

Seth really seems to be doubling down on the “Orville” is the successor Berman era Trek. It’s the ‘real Trek’. He even feels the need to defend the Replicator. Sorry Seth, I think I’ll listen to Moore and someone who has written a lot of Star Trek as opposed to someone coming across as a combative Star Trek messageboard negative Nancy.


A lot of STAR TREK writing is just OK. I’m not sure your equation that quantity of writing directly equates to Trek quality is a valid one.

I take your point, however Moore has more insight in the Trek writing process than a mega fan like Seth, even one who has worked in TV and Film.

First couple of critic reviews are out, and….woof…they absolutely hate it. I will watch and decide for myself, but doesn’t look good…

Yikes.. “it’s not much fun to watch. Because it doesn’t work as comedy. It doesn’t work as sci-fi. It just doesn’t work at all.” In his defence, pretty much how I remember TNG/VOY now so faithful continuation of that series.

From the SF Chronicle — MacFarlane is lost in space with ‘Orville’

Tvline — The Orville Review: Seth MacFarlane’s Somber Sci-Fi Dud Crashes and Burns

@Curious Cadet,

The Associated Press: Fall’s freshest breath of air transports viewers into airless outer space on “The Orville.”

Time magazine: Though far from perfect in its early going, the show’s fun, sunny energy could win over fans of classic sci-fi and those who vibe with MacFarlane’s geekier, less nihilistic impulses.

Lesson of the day: There will always be good as well as bad reviews!

@Ahmed… but when the bad outnumber the good, you might want to notice that discrepancy.


You should read the reviews for when CITIZEN KANE was initially released to the theaters.


So far the negative reviews that I’ve seen are criticizing The Orville over basically 3 issues:

1- Inconsistent tone, lack of comedy and for being a bit too serious.
2- Trying to mimic Star Trek; reusing common science fiction tropes
3- Issues with MacFarlane’s character.

Of the three issues the inconsistent tone is a bit concerning but not enough to discourage me from watching the show & judging it for myself.

As for the other two issues, I don’t see them as problems at all. The fact that The Orville is more drama than just a comedy is a good thing and one reason why I’m looking forward to the show. And I don’t a show that try to be like Star Trek as a bad thing at all.

In general, reviews are never the main factor for me to watch a show/movie or not especially if I’m interested in the premise and/or the cast.

From Variety:

As an actor, MacFarlane displays basic competence, but he does not have the charisma or chops to carry an entire season of an hourlong drama, nor is he able to set the right tone for the show. Of course, that would be difficult for anyone, given “The Orville’s” inconsistency about what it wants to be. It tries to be light and comedic, except when it’s a morality play or an action hour or a hangout comedy set in space.

All in all, the echoes of other journeys from past eras make for a superficial and undistinguished voyage.

The third installment … is one of the most spectacular and unfortunate storytelling fails of the year.

An air of self-congratulation hangs over the entire hour, as if MacFarlane, who wrote it, couldn’t get over his awe at his own bravery in engaging with a difficult, complex topic. … the end result is disastrous. If it’s challenging for “The Orville” to wring laughs from the audience, it’s all but impossible for it to earn the dramatic (and tone-deaf) conclusion it attempts in the third episode.

TV could always use more space-set shows, but “The Orville” just doesn’t boldly go anywhere worth following.

Oops, forgot this gem from the VARIETY review:

The first impression — that it exists so that creator and star Seth MacFarlane can do elaborate “Star Trek” cosplay — is only reinforced over the course of the tepid trio of episodes that kick off the show.

Well, somebody appears to be deleting my posts from the numerous negative reviews. I’ll assume it’s because of copyright infringement concerns? So I’ll just list them by headline, so those interested can go looking for them:

Variety: Seth MacFarlane’s ‘The Orville’ on Fox

The Hollywood Reporter: Seth MacFarlane’s Fox sci-fi series ‘The Orville’ is an earnest, rarely effective ‘Star Trek’-inspired dramedy, not a ‘Family Guy’-style sitcom or a ‘Galaxy Quest’ parody hybrid.

Deadline Hollywood: Seth MacFarlane’s Fox Sci-Fi Drama Is Lost In Space

Collider: Seth MacFarlane Plays It Safe in His Egregious ‘Star Trek’ Rip-Off

USA Today: Seth MacFarlane’s ‘Star Trek’-inspired ‘The Orville’ flies off course

TVLine: Seth MacFarlane’s Somber Sci-Fi Dud Crashes and Burns

Uproxx: Seth MacFarlane’s ‘The Orville’ Isn’t A ‘Star Trek’ Spoof. It’s Just Bad ‘Star Trek’

SF Chronicle: MacFarlane is lost in space with ‘Orville’

AVClub: What in the world is Seth MacFarlane’s sci-fi series The Orville supposed to be?

Newsday: Uneven ‘Star Trek’ homage

Las Vegas Review Journal: ‘The Orville” is neither funny nor sci-fi

And the negative reviews just keep on coming …

A few more today …

OC Register: ‘Family Guy’s’ Seth MacFarlane enters ‘Star Trek’ sci-fi space with ‘The Orville’ but seems a little lost

IGN: Review was pretty poor

The writing was on the wall with this series, and the vast majority of the reviews are confirming what many of us expected from the beginning. I’m sure we’ll all be watching the premiere with interest. It’s probably a good thing FOX is not trying to launch a streaming network with this, because the reviews are definitely enough to keep me from spending any money to see it.

Hahahaha, at 3:18 in the video, I clearly hear the Star Trek: Enterprise viewscreen chirp.

Good interview.

Seth makes a logical point about the replicators.

My rejoinder would be that if it takes unrealistic technology to effect and support the socio-economic philosophy of the show, then maybe the socio-economic philosophy of the show is, itself, is unrealistic in some way. A human population that wants for no basic needs (basic food, shelter, etc.) is imaginable. But at some point, human wants will exceed human output, as the latter requires work. And the human desire to work, under the best conditions, is limited. This is the most fundamental law of economics: unlimited want of limited supply. TNG’s answer was to wave a magic wand to create unlimited supply. Does it well serve humanity to arbitrarily do away with the law of Supply and Demand in your sci-fi drama? I’m not sure that it does.