The Shuttle Pod Crew Discusses ‘Generations,’ Star Trek 4 News, And Reviews “Ask Not”

Shuttle Pod 74 – ‘Generations’ at 25, Star Trek 4 Is Back On, And ‘Short Treks’ – “Ask Not”


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Brian, Matt, and Laurie man the shuttle pod this episode, where they touch on the silver anniversary of Star Trek Generations, and the second season of Star Trek: Discovery on Blu-ray. Then the team gets into the news of the week—that a fourth Kelvin movie may be back on, this time with writer/director Noah Hawley. Lastly, the trio reviews the latest Short Treks episode “Ask Not.”

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Michael Hall

I’ve rather unexpectedly become rather a fan of the “Short Treks” format, which when put in the hands of someone like Michael Chabon can be a positive delight. That said, “Ask Not” was something of a disappointment. The plot twist was pretty obvious, and the cadet test itself strained credibility. TNG actually did a much better job with Deanna Troi’s holodeck officer’s exam, which actually made sense within the parameters of the Trek universe. Anson Mount was awesome as always, and the actress did the best she could with the material on offer. I did love the Enterprise engine room with its Phase II-ish warp core (and no, it wasn’t too big to fit within the established size of the engineering hull), but that was about it. Looking forward to hopefully a better Trek next month.

I forgot to mention it, but I also saw what seemed like a smidge of the Phase II design in the warp core. Glad I wasn’t the only one to see it.
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DataMat

I had a VHS tape of GEN/FC and I reckon I worked it to death as a kid. Still watch these movies probably at least once a year lol. I probably will until I die to be honest.

I think it comes down a lot to nostalgia because I definitely haven’t really kept coming back to the kelvin films since they released and neither have I really found much interest in Discovery either.
I think at a younger age you have films that really speak to you and you never forget certain influences in your childhood. Of course GEN has the saucer crash which as a kid and still now I absolutely loved, but that alone surely cannot be why I kept coming back to the film.
Generations is a film about coming of age, facing death, moving on, the meaning of time and about choices relating to all this and consequences I think.

The Nexus is flawed but as a young person that’s not something you think about.
Kirk’s death; its fine.
Shatner wanted to move on and he also wanted to give closure to the character and personally I think to give the fans ‘what they want’, namely to basically have Kirk die in some kind of big explosion in space, is just as silly.

Are we really sure if Kirk really did die? I ask because he already died on the ENT B and the ribbon didn’t actually directly interact with the ship, it was just struck with the electric flash and blew up the deflector.

On the planet the ribbon actually arrived before the planet was destroyed and in the scene it looks to me like Picard has literally disappeared, so was he killed?

Generations is a fun and warm movie that despite it’s depressing themes actually seems to make me feel better about life for some really strange reason.
Nostalgia again? Probably.
I’d also add that I like the Star Wars prequels too (they get a lot of stick, some of it right, some of it unfair IMO), loved them as a kid, still like them now.
I also love the original movie but I didn’t grow up with them so its all a different experience.
I recognised the original trilogy is a superior product but I also will always have fond memories of experiencing the prequel trilogy when I was a kid.

And First Contact is my favourite Star Trek movie, so Generations is the perfect starter in preparation for the main course.
Insurrection isn’t a bad dessert either, but not everyone stays for dessert and I can’t add anything more.

Legate Damar

I’m pretty sure the scene with the holo-May in Tilly’s year book was in the final episode. I don’t remember the part with the computer referring her to sickbay though.

That might be, I didn’t remember it off hand. It would make sense, it had finished VFX.

The talking out loud to the computer part is for sure one of the deleted (extended) scenes.

TG47

Dropping this here on the pretext that it’s TOS news:

https://www.winnipegfreepress.com/canada/shatner-obomsawin-among-39-inductees-to-order-of-canada-today-565267622.html

Bill Shatner received his medal yesterday as an Officer of the Order of Canada from Governor-General (GG) of Canada the Rt. Hon. Julie Payette.

The GG was the first female Canadian astronaut to go to space.

How cool is that!

Pick Hard

That headline makes no grammatical sense.

Crew takes a singular verb. Different in Britain, actually, but in the U.S. it takes the singular.

TechNoir

Harping on about grammar is among the lowest forms of online criticisms. It is the realm of the extremely bored and the English major in need of an ego boost.

TG47

IDIC even in English language, TechNoir.

The differences in singular vs plural nouns for crew, government, council, committee can really be jarring for North American and British native English speakers. It can really trip one up.

As a Canadian, who uses yet a different English that tends to more American grammar but more British spelling and word definitons, I’m very conscious of it. I’m sure Laurie, a Canadian who has lived in the United States a long time, is also well aware.

But since Americans and Brits tend to assume their English is the universal one, and don’t have to struggle with software or editors that don’t use ‘their English’, it’s harder to roll with it. Let’s call it a kind of ‘big country’ privilege.

From my point of view, if taking the time to help one one another to understand our different versions of English helps us to make this a more global board, that’s a good thing.

And it would be just the kind of cultural nuance that the TNG or DS9 folks would be curious about and celebrate.

TechNoir

No, it’s not about cultural differences. This person has posted these nitpicky comments before. He or she is bored and wanting attention. It’s tedious.

It makes perfect grammatical sense. I’m all for complaining about grammar and spelling and whatnot, but woe unto they who do so incorrectly.

TG47

Bryant, Laurie and I are trying to make the point that if one speaks
correct British English, one says ‘the government, they review’ or ‘the crew review’; whereas in US (and Canadian in this case), we say ‘the government, it discusses’ or ‘the crew discusses’.

Given that headlines are crunched down anyway, sometimes these differences in English make things really hard to parse ‘across the pond’.

We took it as Pick Hard genuinely not getting how the headline should be read because they aren’t using North American English.

I find it difficult to believe that anyone in England who knows how to use the language wouldn’t know enough to know an Americanism was being used. So the idea that the headline makes “no grammatical sense” just doesn’t fly.

A very trivial matter, I know.

TG47

Bryant in a world with IDIC values it should be trivial.

However, having experienced being told my English was incomprehensible when visiting relatives in the UK….and having had peers in a US graduate program assuming my accent was an affectation (until one of them actually spent some time doing research in Canada), one just accepts that many of us get hung up on these things.

Forward Propulsion

my bad… i forgot how you guys are such sour pusses… not your fault… mine… i’m trying to forget what i just listened to though… does trek have a memory eraser? i forget

Did you also forget how to capitalize letters?

Vulcan Soul

The lack of REAL news regarding the upcoming series is deafening. Some news sites go silent or recycle news, such as this one, and others post “news” that is no news at all, such as several outlets recently posting “new images” from Picard that have been around since the last (and only) trailer! Either way, I maintain this marketing “strategy”, if you can call it that, is deeply flawed in our short attention, instant gratification social media age, and going to suppress the potential turnout come January. You would have thought they learned something from the debacle of “Beyond”, but obviously they did not!

jako

It was always a bit disturbing to me how obedient folks are these days towards the market. It reaches such a level that people blame companies for not flodding the world with marketing.

Vulcan Soul clearly knows about Picard and is well informed. But Still demands more marketing, more advertisement, more promotion. Vulcan Soul seems actually kind of angry about the alledged lack of marketing for Picard. Despite that there is no lack of promotion at all, this is disturbing!

Dont you have a life beyond all this Media trouble Vulcan Soul that its hurts you so much, that there is no new trailer every day?
How about going out from time to time, meet some people, expirience real life. You will See… The new Shows will be here in no time. You can watch them, enjoy them, or not and the show will go on and on and on.

But yeah… its kind of heart warming that you care so much for the succes of some Multimillion Dollar Companys. What would they do without people like you?

Besides that:
2 Trailers, multiple Conventions shortly after each other, Multiple News about Short Treks, Discovery, Lower Decks… but yeah… lack of promotion.

Mikey1701

Vulcan Soul just likes to complain. Leave them be.

Vulcan Soul

Ok Alex, off that keyboard for today, it’s weekend ;)

Michael Hall

Relax. 2020’s almost upon us, and my guess is that starting in December “Picard” will be getting steadily increasing play in all media. Enjoy your holidays, and let the MBAs worry about marketing.

Vulcan Soul

Michael, it’s only 10 episodes though, and when (if?) the second season comes, there will be another year-long break in between. My point, which an increasing number of posters unfortunately has to obscure with pointless personal insults, is that they could have extended this extremely short “active” roll-out phase of season 1 by an active, sustained marketing campaign reintroducing the ‘new’ 24th century to new and old viewers alike, by a factor of two or three. And no, one trailer and less than a dozen pictures ain’t that. None of the material would have to spoil the storylines either; just give us some in-depth features on the new uniforms, phasers etc. That seems par for the course at a time of ubiquitous social media, and TPTB are not using it to full extent.

TG47

VS, I’m with you on the social media.

Despite the global branding experts being embedded, and a revamp of the official site, I’m actually feeling that the promotional Trek presence is thinner and staler than a year ago.

Certainly, Star Trek on CBSAA Twitter account is now a strictly Monday to Friday 9 to 5er op.

It looks like we’re being redirected to the Star Trek official Twitter account which makes sense as it’s not blocked,but I can’t say that’s a compelling read either.

I personally find the new format of the official Star Trek site less user-friendly on mobile. The banner content is rarely compelling and the video is 3 or 4 tiers down.

Tiger2

I get what you’re saying, for US we want to see as much as possible, but I think what they are doing is pretty much on the money. We already have a teaser and two full trailers (the whole TV trailer thing is kind of new in itself. When TNG and the other shows were on the air, they would get ONE nice promotional TV spot with just a bunch of clips and it would be seen 1-2 months before the show started. Now these are treated and made just like movie trailers always been with a ton of promotion to promote the trailer lol).

And remember in literally just a few days time they are releasing the first Countdown comic (Nov. 27th) which will be a 3 part special. The last time a Trek production got that was STID. Neither Beyond or Discovery got anything like this. There is also a Picard Short Trek on the way in early January.

All the clips, comic con presentations/interviews and trailers are all up on All Access. It’s crazy Picard already had its own banner on that site 6-7 months before it airs. Discovery didn’t get its banner until 2-3 months before IIRC although it had a ‘coming soon’ image of the poster (I joined the site five months before the premiere).

So they are marketing this thing, at least more than they did with Discovery at this point. Given we are now officially two months from launch date, its going to obviously get bigger, the first Countdown comic is really going to kick things off as the first official part of the story.

I’m sure there is ALWAYS more that can be done, but up to this point, I think its been fairly consistent. And its really the first time we are going to get aspects of a Star Trek show with the Countdown comics and Short Trek before it officially premieres.

TG47

Tiger2, I think that I am beginning to get VS’s concern.

When the actual new Trek content is brief (10 hours for Picard; 12 for Discovery), there is a long period without new product or news to maintain momentum.

It’s just not the same as having 26 or 52 new episodes of Trek per year as in the 90s.

The ShuttlePod crew has commented previously that Kurtzman and the marketing team could do better in terms of distinguishing what to share at broad market comiccons vs targeted Trek events. There are deeper dive pieces which are of interest to core fans that are just noise to a general audience. Better targeting and pacing of this moment would help.

Having 3 series on CBSAA in 2020 will help, but we’re still only looking at less than 30 hours of content coming out in 3 separate series. Getting the word out amid the noise of Disney+ and Amazon Prime, is a concern.

Tiger2

Well yeah, that’s true, it’s a lot less content on but I think 2020 will at least start to have a real consistency of shows running with Picard, Discovery and Lower Decks (and I’m also guessing the Short Treks will be running as well) so while it’s not 52 episodes a season the glorious 90s got us it will give us a lot more momentum since we had in the last 2 years.

And honestly I guess I see it as we are becoming a bit spoiled lol. Yes, its not as much as before but its waaaaaay better than it was between 2005 and 2016 where there was literally nothing. Now we are getting more shows and that is drawing more attention to Star Trek in a long, long time. Look at Disney+ and its new Star Wars and Marvel shows. They have a LOT planned, but those shows are only running 6-8 episodes a season tops and at the rate they are going they won’t even get two shows on a year until probably 2021 the earliest. But yes, they have all their movies to sustain them. But no one seems panicked over losing ‘momentum’ when The Mandolorian first season ends which is literally in a month. It will probably be like Discovery and wait basically a full year before another season happens. They are shooting season 2 now, so it might come sooner but doubtful.

I guess what I’m saying is that ‘pacing’ is just a very different animal today. We have WAY more content than we ever had across the board but its more limited within the shows themselves and time between seasons are longer. Star Trek is going through the same thing now. But same time, ASSUMING no shows are cancelled, we can have up to 5 Star Trek shows on in the next 3 years. I don’t think that will happen but it is possible. We’re just at the beginning of where all of this is going.

I know this discussion is more about marketing but I’m saying the more that gets produced the more regular it will become but no its not going to be like before with less episodes, but you can say that about nearly every show that isn’t a network show today. This isn’t an issue with Star Trek alone. Stranger Things is Netflix hottest show. It’s been on since 2016 and so far has made 3 seasons with a whopping 25 episodes total and yet it has no issues keeping people every season. Next season looks like it will happen next summer the earliest. Could be later.

As for Picard, obviously isn’t being pushed harder because they are trying their best not to reveal too many spoilers. It’s no different than the limited marketing the new Star Wars sequels, Infinity War and End Game had because they wanted people to go in with as little knowledge as possible. Knowing that, I think its fine. Look at how crazy people got over that first Picard trailer? Its because they manage to keep everything in it, and I mean EVERYTHING a secret. Once you start promoting it all the time, things just gets leaked more.

Trek in a Cafe

There’s one reason CBS should save their money til January. STAR WARS.

Mat

I am all for diversity, but I’m getting tired of hearing all the negativity about white people and white men that routinely comes up on this podcast. I appreciate all of your insight into Trek. I just don’t understand why it’s ok to downgrade men, when if any male brought out negativity regarding a female they’d have their hand figuratively slapped. I get it. Star Trek movies have only been directed by men. And yes the DS9 writer’s room was men. But why should being a male have any impact on whether or not you’re good at a job?

Legate Damar

They didn’t attack the man at all. They seem to have high hopes for him, in fact. They were just a bit disappointed that Trek lost its first female movie director.

This ^

Exactly. Thanks for saying it for us.

Mat

I did not say they attacked him. Read my post. They go out of there way to say “now we’re back to just some white dude” like it’s a bad thing to be white and male.

Nobody said “white.” You’re hearing what you want to hear. It was plain as day that Laurie meant it was disappointing that Trek wasn’t going to have its first female director anymore. Which it is.

You can be disappointed you’re not having cake without it being an indictment of pie; unless, of course, your sole purpose in life is to make sure nobody enjoys anything but pie, in which case you’re a monster.

DataMat

What about the first woman captain in a Star Trek Movie?
In fact have a woman direct that movie too because IMO that would truly freshen up the movie franchise.

Mat

You might wanna listen again there Bryant. They clearly make the statement. And I think it would be fantastic to have a female director. I think it would be awesome, because it would bring a fresh perspective as many have said. My complaint is solely based around the way the topic was tackled by instead of just saying it’s sad that we lost the lady originally supposed to direct, they said “now we’re back to some white dude.”

I am totally pro female directors. Just had a problem with what was said.

I went back and listened again, and … you are right. I stand corrected!

Laurie Ulster

But… we also said that we don’t know him, he might be great. Brian mentioned how much he loves Noah’s show Fargo, and I talked about how his background in television could be an asset. In fact, we specifically said we had nothing against him, and he could be great, but that we were disappointed that there was no longer a female director attached. We didn’t downgrade him at all, and suggested he might be great.

Mat

So all of that stuff outweighs what was originally said? That’s like taking a mess made on a floor and covering it up with a rug. The mess is still there.

Laurie Ulster

What specifically was said that you are objecting to?

Mat

I stated it in my original comment and several times in this thread.

Laurie Ulster

It seems that you are taking one comment out of context and ignoring the rest of what was said. We didn’t say that being a man would make him bad at his job; in fact, we speculated that he might be quite good at it. While we said we were disappointed that we wouldn’t have our first female director, we also said that his background in television might make him a good choice and Brian even specifically mentioned a show of his that he likes. So what is the issue? We did NOT say male directors are bad, men are bad, white men are bad, or that he is going to be bad because he’s a white man. We never said it was a bad thing to be white and male. So that’s why I’m not sure what your objection is.

Trek in a Cafe

It’s kind of a secret, but the next Star Trek film is all about Uhurah. That’s it. Her POV. All Day and All night. Should a man direct that?

Danpaine

I don’t care if a gender-neutral gazelle directs it. Just give us a good story and tight script, please.

DIGINON

So you are equating a woman (or someone from some minority group) directing the movie to a gazelle directing it? One is ridiculous while they other definitely is not. You do know the difference?

Danpaine

I’m not ‘equating’ anything. Just asking for a good movie, could care less what gender directs it.

VZX

I agree with the podcasters about the budget for a Star Trek movie. I remember arguing about budget with Bob Orci several years ago on this site, he was amazed that fans would want a smaller budget. I think that is telling of the Hollywood mindset: that we low-brow Trekkies just want eye candy. And they continue to ape TWOK with the vengeful villains. Like Laurie said, I’d rather a great Trek story with awesome character arcs and moments than explosions and set pieces.

And I’d also rather a space battle with the crew on the bridge than running and fighting. The space battles are much cheaper than giant set pieces.

Just Another Salt Vampire

I think that Discovery is a deeply flawed show, but one way that it stands out is with gorgeous feature-quality visuals. If they can do those effects on a streaming series budget then surely a feature film could do a great story with a reasonable budget.

Really making a great movie comes down to having a good story. I thought that both Into Darkness and Beyond failed on that account despite having some great action set-pieces and visuals (e.g., the opening sequence with the volcano, the Yorktown space station).

I am always happy when it’s a Laurie episode. I like the whole crew, though, so really I’m just happy when there’s an episode.

Laurie Ulster

That just made my day. Thank you.

You betcha!

DeanH

Sorry this is such a late comment. Why was Pike particularly interested in taking the time test a certain cadet? The same reason why Picard particularly wanted Enign Seto from Lower Decks to be assigned to the Enterprise. A cadet with a marginal chance to get posted to a starship, but obviously one who Picard, or in this case Pike, thought she had the potential to be good officer.

Legate Damar

Picard only tested her because he was planning to send her on a dangerous mission.

Disinvited

According to last night’s CBS EVENING NEWS, it’s now VIACOMCBS. We are one.