Jonathan Frakes Talks ‘Discovery’ And ‘Picard’ Critics, And His Future Directing Two New Star Trek Shows

Star Trek: The Next Generation star Jonathan Frakes has become a major part of Star Trek again as a director for both of the current live-action Trek shows. Yesterday, Frakes was a guest on the GalaxyCon Live show, where he talked about his history with Star Trek and where he is headed with the franchise.

Frakes sees connections for Discovery and Picard fan acceptance with his TNG experience

The GalaxyCon Live show focuses on fan conventions and Frakes recalled a number of stories from his decades as a con regular. He began by telling the story of facing a tough crowd at his first con in 1987 after the premiere of Star Trek: The Next Generation:

The audience were very hardcore Original Series fans. They were skeptical. They were suspicious. They were generally not terribly interested and completely unfamiliar with the new Star Trek which had a bald English captain with a French name, and an entirely new cast. They wanted their Kirk, Spock, and Bones Star Trek.

Later, the Riker actor discussed how long it took for fans to accept the new Trek show:

I don’t think it wasn’t until the second or third year when [Star Trek: The Next Generation] got really got good. And remember we did 26 [episodes] a year, so that is a lot It was 50 or 60 shows in. They realized there was room in their world for both shows.

Frakes then contrasted this past fan evolution to the recent fan reactions to Star Trek: Discovery and Star Trek: Picard:

With Discovery, which I was privileged to be part of and still am, it was a similar vibe when that show came out. They didn’t want to find room in their hearts for another Star Trek, which there clearly is. One of the reasons that was not a factor in the launching of Picard was that the hardcore fans love Picard and were inclined to look forward to the show and look forward to having him and look forward to whatever story. Because they knew him and they knew who he was. I think the familiarity with all fandom is so important. It is like the canon of these shows… they want a touch point. And, it’s important, and it clearly worked, because Picard is wonderful.

When asked about the fans that remain critics of Star Trek: Picard, Frakes jumped in with an observation:

But they’re watching! …  They’re watching to make sure they hate it!

Jonathan Frakes on set directing the second season Discovery episode “The Red Angel”

Playing Riker again was nerve-wracking, but set for directing more (and new) Star Trek shows

The actor-turned-director discussed how Star Trek has become such a big part of his life again, with more to come:

It has been a blessing to have my career to be rekindled by the new Star Treks. It didn’t hurt that I learned how to do another craft. The directing has been fantastic for me. When Discovery worked out and then Picard worked out and now there will be a new one, and another one.

When talking about what he has been up to recently, Frakes confirmed just how much Star Trek he is doing these days (along with a new non-Star Trek show):

I’ve got three epiodes of Discovery [season three] that have yet to air. I just finished this new action/adventure called The Astronauts, which is kind of wonderful. And looking forward to going back to Picard.

While feeling confident about his work as a director, Frakes revealed he was nervous about returning to the role of Riker for Picard:

It was a thrill to be asked back as an actor, nerve-wracking, but a thrill. I thought Marina [Sirtis] was astounding when Patrick came to our home in “Nepenthe.” Spectacular!

Jonathan Frakes as Riker in Star Trek: Picard “Nepenthe” with Sir Patrick Stewart as Jean-Luc Picard and Marina Sirtis as Deanna Troi

Watch Frakes’ GalaxyCon chat

The full GalaxyCon chat is available on Facebook and can be see below. It includes more talk of conventions, Frakes’ time playing Captain America, the animated series Gargoyles, and more.

Jonathan Frakes & Marina Sirtis Live Mon, 7pm ET

Riker and Troi reunite here on GalaxyCon Live Monday April 13th at 7pm ET to share their love of conventions and Star Trek fans.Mark Your Calendar and Get a Reminder for this one-of-a-kind event.7pm ET | 6pm CT | 5pm MT | 4pm PTJonathan Frakes "William Riker" and Marina Sirtis "Deanna Troi" are best known for their roles on Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Picard.

Posted by GalaxyCon on Monday, April 13, 2020


Keep up with all the Star Trek: Picard news and reviews at TrekMovie.com.

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I think the over simplification to characters (fans want their “Kirk, Spock and McCoy”) hides some laziness and a refusal to admit audiences want their stories relatable and exciting regardless of characters. Ironically I think Discovery almost had this but then wasted a bit of the setup (why go way out of your way to have a TOS Klingon War and then not have a recognizable Klingon battlecrusier go up against a recognizable Federation Connie?)
Ironically the card the current show runners really seem to want to play is that referent card – see it’s RIKER serving pizza in a show with a Star Trek label. Wish every Trek series pre-development started with them reading the Star Trek pitch (the original one that has obvious staying power). Frontier, exploration, relatable characters facing hardships and pulling it off.

You are still hating TNG?

In my defence it was really really bad with the exception of when Picard destroyed half the Starfleet and Riker tried to nav deflector him. Oh, and DS9 was really good once it through out as much of TNG as it could (minus the 1000s of starships just racing at each other). Ironically though I DID like Picard, which should frighten all true TNG fans because it pretty much summed up Picard’s failed legacy outside of a technology change that sets it up for TNG to be virtually ignored in the future (which is pretty much assured I think in Discovery Season 3 if only because it was written pre-Picard that it won’t make any sense in where are all the AI lifeforms and why does everyone not live forever with super strength?).

Punctuation. Grammar. Readable sentences.

Most of my income — well right now, until the crisis lifts, all of it — is from writing, and I’m not seeing any issue with Bremmon’s punctuation or grammar, unless you think he’s missing a comma or two. I kinda like the longish sentences as well, though he left out a word in the last one.

That’s ok, Auntie May is threatened by those seeking exploration and adventure versus nostalgia and pizza serving. I feel empathy because once upon a time I used to watch TNG thinking that it HAS TO BE GOOD because I put so much time into and it had a Star Trek label. I really think coming to terms with why I did not like it and how TPTB (the powers that be) can just be misaligned was a real learning experience. It opened the door for realizing that if you want exploration/adventure and TPTB won’t provide it you can move on and do it! Alternatively we can offer some constructive conflict and try to win the day. Doesn’t matter to me in the end, because exploration, frontiers and facing hardships is where it’s at regardless!

In your ‘defense’ you watched all 176 episodes for seven years.
l
And TNG will never be ignored. You can certainly ignore it and stop all the ridiculous gate keeping you do around here. Sometimes you come off like you’re trolling.

I like Trekmovie but this is why I’m so happy there are many options out there for fans and not listen to old bitter narrow minded fans like yourself who acts like the Star Trek they happen to personally like is the only one that should count. Sadly it’s not just you, looking at this entire board right now it seems to be quite a few.

If you don’t like a show people, that’s fine, but stop telling the rest of us what you think is ‘real’ Star Trek. It’s juvenile, annoying, gate keeping and plain wrong.

Defence is a perfectly acceptable way to spell the word, in any country that isn’t called ‘United States’. So congratulations, on being a grammar nazi as well as a douche, all at the same time.

Ha ha Yes, my “Canadian” is on full display. Good catch.

LOL my post had NOTHING to do with how he spelled the word Mike. I was talking about how he was claiming in his ‘defense’ he didn’t like TNG because how bad it was and yet still managed to watch every episode just the same. I thought what was funny he used that word to argue why he hates the show so much but it still didn’t stop him from watching it for seven straight years and four movies.

I didn’t even realized he spelled the word differently until now. And I lived in Australia for years, I still catch myself spelling words like ‘organisation’ and ‘colour’ from time to time even today and have to correct myself since they are not spelled that way in America. I’m more than aware countries have different styles of speaking and writing, especially the Commonwealth countries that naturally conforms to British style of writing like Canada. So get a grip please.

Follow up to show this is non character related and at heart isn’t TOS vs. TNG or any of that. Spocks Brain. Spocks Brain is a horrid episode regardless of Kirk, Spock and McCoy.

I never got the hate for that episode. I mean, yeah its a stupid premise that doesn’t make a lot of scientific sense, but once you get past that it is a very fun episode. And I love the scene where Spock talks McCoy through performing brain surgery on him.

Cmd. Bremmon, afraid I can’t let you say that about “Spock’s Brain.” Not when “The Armageddon Factor,” “I, Mudd,” and “Turnabout Intruder” are out there. Some lines are just not meant to be crossed. {{:D

Ha ha Ok, ok, you might be right on Spock’s Brain.

That’s “Alternative Factor”.

There’s no Star Trek episode called “The Armageddon Factor.” But, yes, “The Alternative Factor” is horrid. “I, Mudd,” on the other hand, is a heck of a lot of fun.

Can’t we all just get along … by agreeing that THE ALTERNATIVE FACTOR is the biggest waste of time in TOS history?

AND THE CHILDREN SHALL LEAD is more actively vile, but it does have that hysterical ‘I’m losing commmand!’ moment that is on my so-bad-it’s-mandated list of terribly OTT Shatner moments. Plus the UFP flag.

“And the Children…” is an intergalactic turd, yeah, but the demonic summoning of Gorgon makes it worth it.

Still better than every episode of TNG with the exception of time Riker tried to nav deflector Picard after Picard destroyed half the Starfleet.

I dunno about THAT. I mean, I really like HALF A LIFE, THE CHASE, Q WHO, MEASURE, and a bunch of third season TNG, when they didn’t have time to rewrite the scripts into mediocrity. And the 2 parter where Picard is playing at space pirate was kind of dopey but fun. Even the Ro turns Maquis show was emotionally satisfying (I would have probably been Maquis.)

Ro rejecting Picard and the stagnant Starfleet was ok. All those episodes listed though were, in my opinion and my opinion, not even in the same ballpark BALANCE OF TERROR, THE DOOMSDAY MACHINE, CITY ON THE EDGE OF FOREVER, etc. And thinking GEN/FC/NEM should be considered in the same series as TWOK I think is an insult to TWOK. Just an order of magnitude in difference and it’s not the writers fault I think but 90s Roddenbery putting in rules to erase the “fun” and our ability to relate all due to internal #metoo issues.

IMHO, the best of TNG is not as good as the best of TOS. And I don’t think it’s even close. IMO, the best TNG episodes are on par with just the above average TOS ones. On the flip side, the bad TOS episodes are certainly right down there with the worst of TNG. Yes, TOS had their share of dog eps too. “Children” was certainly one of them. But imagine if And the Children Shall Lead were padded and stretched out over 10 episodes! What a horrid season that would have been. That is what we are getting with Secret Hideout Trek and the problem with short season long story arcs. You HAVE to at least get a base hit with them or they fail. Miserably.

It’s weird and I’m not sure why but my opinion of the TNG episodes seems to have gone down over the years. At the time the show was on I wasn’t in love with it but I wasn’t irritated by it either. It was just new Trek and I was happy for that. Maybe I’m just becoming a crotchety old man. LOL.

In my opinion TNG is better than TOS actually (but DS9 beats them both). But yes they are all just that, opinions. No one is right or wrong, just what people like.

Gotta love the ever-talented Jonathan.

Indeed! Every time the man speaks he puts my mind at ease. I love Frakes and his devotion to this franchise!

And everything he says is right and logical of course. Yes many people didn’t want to like TNG and it did start out bad (making their job harder lol). But then it got better, fans stuck with it and became beloved. Even being more popular for some fans who started with TOS like I did. I always say TOS made me a fan but TNG made me a fanatic and it only got stronger with the later shows.

So none of this is new. But I don’t think it’s the same issues with Discovery and definitely not with Picard. And I still wouldn’t put Picard in the same category of Discovery because Discovery tried to reboot the universe as a whole and where a lot of bitterness come from (and why it’s in another setting now). That was just a mistake to do altogether. If they tried to make it a little more TOS in the beginning people may have had the strong reaction they did. Picard was mostly too much hype (and a hope it would be closer to Trek than what Discovery was) but it just wasn’t that well written that was main culprit IMO. In other words, it’s issues are not as deep.

And yes they can find ways to keep the skeptics watching by just throwing in more and fa Discovery did second season. It doesn’t take much to keep us watching lol. But both shows will have to just have a higher quality because even that stuff will get old after a few seasons (but I will probably still be watching waiting for that Worf appearance in season 5 lol).

Meant by throwing in more nostalgia and fan service! Not sure how I missed that.

Jonathan Frakes is indeed a very talented man. My take from seeing him at conventions is that he is very authentic and kind as well. A good guy, and we are lucky to have him. And I say this as as a TOS fan.

Frakes is absolutely right. Hating the new Star Trek show is a pretty on-brand thing for Star Trek fans to do. There are still Reddit threads every week from fans who never watched Enterprise, finally did and now say it was actually pretty good (and accept it as canon). You’ll still find fans who hate DS9 or make fun of Voyager (which found it’s own audience, especially with women). Fans forget these shows aren’t made for them, they’re made for a corporation to make money and exploit IP. You enjoying them and identifying your personality with them is really a bonus for them. Do, I love Discovery? No, I do not. I still like watching it. Do I love Picard? Yes, I did love it despite its flaws. But everyone seems to forget that neither TNG nor TOS was perfect in any way. The only ones who get close to perfection are the Borg (which I’m sure fans hated when they first appeared!).

Thus far Enterprise is something I still don’t like. And that’s ok. I don’t go into discussions to talk about how terrible I think it is and complain about a show that’s been off the air for 15 years. That’s what bugs me about ‘fans’. Like, someone was complaining about Westworld in the shows reddit yesterday and we all said to stop watching. His response was that he did in season 2. Then why are you in the current episode thread bashing the show?

I don’t do that. I don’t begrudge people that like Enterprise, I just don’t like it.

I think it is very useful to keep the dissenting views up, because those criticisms of past shows are still valid, and point to how new series can keep making the same old mistakes, just now they are dressing them up and trying to cover them with lens flares. Most of the ENT eps I saw felt like 50s scifi with an occasional science consult augmentation, and effects-wise they seemed a huge step back in credibility (then again, I gave up on VOYAGER early, so the big step in reverse was probably already taking place there.)

If Enterprise had been Cochrane gone missing and hope lost, Scott Bakula trying to rekindle the magic and rebuild a post ww3 Earth with resources from space, nuclear weapons, no phasers on stun, no transporters, primitive starships, no subspace comms phone home to Starfleet for help, colonization efforts, first contacts gone wrong, you must represent all of humanity where the Vulcans see us as illogical, the Andorians see us as push overs, the Klingons want us dead and the Romulans want us as slaves, would that have helped?

I laughed out loud when Frakes said that the Haters were watching the show to make sure they hated it. Thanks Jonathan, because if a fan like me said that it would be dismissed. When a beloved Trek insider says that, then they have to listen. Seriously though I think he makes a lot of good points regarding the acceptance of TNG by SOME fans. Personally, I watched TNG from day one and even though it wasn’t exactly great for a couple of years, my friends and I never missed an episode. He was also right about Sirtis’ acting. I thought that Nepenthe might have been her best performance as Troi. She has really come a long long way from that first pilot episode of TNG and “great joy”. Oh and he was also right about some fans simply not accepting shows right away. I for one did not give DS9 a second look until years after just watching the two-part premiere. Finally, I got around to watching and now I honestly think it was fantastic, especially the last 5 years of the series. LLAP everyone and stay safe.

I’m glad I stuck through TNG to catch DS9. Watched the finale of Voyager and was soooooo excited with the preview of Enterprise thinking lessons were learned only to be crushed in the pilot where the writers could not go one hour with hour without phasers on stun, shields, transporters and peace with the Klingons. ONE HOUR, like seriously??!?!

You think you just made a point. You did not.

Explain please to me how you know he did not make his point when it was very evident to me. Your point?

Frakes is wrong, I’ve stopped watching and I hate it. Also the difference between now and TNG is a man of principle, skill and integrity came in for season 3. Picard is the 3rd season of new Trek and sadly there is no Michael Piller figure to rescue the franchise this time around, just hacks, shills and pretentious wannabes. Star Trek is dead and Frakes should stop pretending otherwise just because he’s getting work out of desecrating its corpse.

The trouble with your argument is that Frakes and the rest aren’t pretending. Because Trek isn’t dead.

Dead creatively, then? I watched PICARD last week and found it pretty listless and plotted in a wholly arbitrary way that should have gotten the writers laughed out of a pitch session. Some of the shows worked, but none of them were actually any good. From what I’ve seen of DSC 1-1/2 seasons, it makes just as grievous errors but at least has the guy playing Pike to offset some of the damage. These shows might as well be SyFy original programming, they offer just as little to connect with as anything from there post-BSG’s years of glory.

Actually, “Star Trek” IS dead. Just because they slap STAR TREK on a show title doesn’t make it ST. Just like when Disney threw the name Star Wars on the new movies. Many fans do not consider them canon. Just like STD.

You’re wrong. The very fact that they slap STAR TREK on a show title makes it STAR TREK. Maybe it doesn’t make STAR TREK that you particularly like, but it is STAR TREK nevertheless. CBS didn’t have to trade mark “Not STAR TREK with STAR TREK slapped on its title”. The original trade mark works just fine.

While I agree Star Trek isn’t dead (it lives on in reruns and old novels), just because you slap a label on it doesn’t make it Star Trek. For what then is Star Trek I urge people to read the original pitch: https://www.syfy.com/syfywire/firsts-gene-roddenberrys-original-pitch-for-star-trek

It isn’t the characters, Robert April on the USS Yorktown was as much Star Trek as Pike and Number One in the Cage as Kirk/Spock. It was the hardships of exploration faced by relatable characters on the frontier of the unknown.

It should surprise no one that the less the characters are relatable and the less hardships on the frontier the more proclamations of Trek being dead. It’s very much I think on life support where the Mandolarian, Lost in Space and Firefly are more “Star Trek” then anything with a Star Trek label (and thus liked).

No. It is Star Trek. You don’t get to decide what is or isn’t. You only get to decide whether you like it or not. Your opinion doesn’t invalidate it for everyone else.

Until I can pay my bills with your opinions, your opinions are worthless to me. As mine should be to your.

It’s funny, the last thing I would ever want to do is sit a room with some of these old and bitter ‘fans’ as they try to tell the rest of us is what Star Trek is or isn’t. It would be incredibly cringe-worthy. Some of these people sound insane.

Incorrect. YOU are wrong, son. If CBS decided that TOS was ‘just a dream’, then it would be deleted from canon. But do you think the ‘true fans’ would think so? NOPE. Just like MOST true fans believe that STD is a joke. A very sad joke. I have never seen so many negative comments on a ST series. Ever. STD and Picard are the only ST series I will never watch twice. And I have watched every other series at least three times. Movies included. Even Star Trek Continues is more canon than STD. Hell, The Orville is more Star Trek than STD! MANY Star Trek fans have said this. Many more liked The Orville than liked STD. Guaranteed. Believe what you want, hun. But we all know the truth ;)

I’m pretty sure you’re not canon.

Are you guys SERIOUSLY having this argument? You can hate the shows, think they are worst than the coronavirus, they are still Star Trek shows. This comes off a bit juvenile. And you’re telling fans of these shows (like a few people here) that their show doesn’t really count. Maybe its just easier to not watch them if you don’t count them.

You sound like Donald Trump

Jimbo,

Shouldn’t you be able to get permabanned for saying that about somebody? Pretty sure I got a temp ban at trekbbs just for comparing a poster’s views to that of Hitler, and am not seeing a massive difference between these folks, as they both seem to want to put eugenics ideas into play (not that 45 could even spell or define eugenics … he’d probably say he was all about me-genics rather than you-genics [a fake news story floated by democrats], and that me-genicks was a perfect idea.)

I generally loathe to get involved in this sort of thing but.. Here it goes. First, I want it made perfectly clear I am no fan of 45 and am certainly no apologist. That said, if you don’t see a difference between the two you mention I think you need to relearn your history. It’s also cliche and a go to argument for many to compare people who don’t agree with their way of thinking to… That person. It’s done amazingly often and done without thought.

ML,
I consider them both amoral monsters.

For all I know with all the mismanaged properties, 45 may have ruined lives in the millions by now. That’s not the same as being responsible for ordering the death of millions, but don’t tell me it isn’t monstrous. And the example he sets of don’t pay your bills is a helluva wrongheaded one, the idea that winning in America means you have to act like you’re above the rules is shameful.

The point is, it is such a cliche to compare any person to that certain Chancellor that we are at the point where anyone who does it really cannot be taken seriously. It is used so very often and nearly every single time it is used without cause. It’s just done to create a knee jerk reaction without thinking. Feel free to continue doing so if you like. But doing so really doesn’t sell your point.

There is no such thing as a “true fan.” That’s just a term the dysfunctional and socially inept use.

One thing is clear: Alczar is just a troll. And not a very good one at that.

At the very least he’s gate keeping and that shouldn’t be allowed here. I have my issues with both Discovery and Picard too but I don’t want some nobody on the internet speaking for me and telling us it’s not real Star Trek.

Alczar

WARNING for gatekeeping

Very this. Heck, I’m not even a big fan of TOS outside of the movies. And that’s fine.

Yeah most of my friends have never even watched TOS save for a few episodes because the show just felt too old and campy for them but watched the other shows because they were more modern. I don’t feel the same way growing up with it but I understand why they did. It’s nothing personal people just like what they like. I’m just happy I knew people that liked Star Trek at all since the overwhelming friends and family never watched one bit of it and basically shun it.

I also understand why many are not feeling Discovery and Picard. I share some of those feelings as well. But when you try to tell us it’s not ‘real’ Star Trek because you simply don’t like the shows or the team that makes them, that’s where you lose most people.

I honestly believe that lip service to an ideal is usually less of a good thing than ignoring the ideal altogether, especially when it seems to mean just tagging something with the brand instead of using that brand to further and deepen the complexity or inherent interest that made it of some value in the first place.

The other problem with the current shows is that even when their heart is in the right place, their execution is juvenile to unprofessional. It’s the kind of situation where a viewer might give the benefit of the doubt — if it was a kid’s home movie, or even a fan film, just because of logistics and deep pockets being unavailable. But for 15 mil an hour or whatever it is (where DOES that Picard show spend it’s money?), delivering a professional presentation that isn’t just cookie-cutter writing should be a reasonable expectation.

I’m the same Tek- I find about 95% of TOS completely unwatchable these days. The movies though are excellent (if you ignore TFF ha ha).

Yeah all the shows I rewatch today, TOS is the one I watch the least these days by a long shot sadly. It’s weird as a kid I could watch them over and over again but as I get older it’s harder to watch. I don’t understand how that happens but I still love the show in general of course and the movies are still fine to watch.

Fans do not decide for the content creators what it is and what it isn’t. I mean, a series about a Starfleet Crew fighting a war with Klingons doesn’t sound like a plot “The Golden Girls.”

This is gatekeeping.

Very this.

What “many fans” consider them is irrelevant. Grow up. The show is extremely popular and the franchise is thriving. Don’t be like The Simpson’s Comic Book Guy all your life.

Show me where the mean alien touched you on this doll…

Bravo. Very similar to my post.

Only the dysfunctional say things like “Star Trek is dead.” The franchise is thriving. What’s dead is your attitude. Grow up.

Is that fanspeak for is/isNOT!

I remember TNG’s start; rocky and uneven, but with promise. And it *did* get better. Discovery, however, started bad, got worse, and never recovered. And I have both seasons every chance. Anson Mount as Pike was good, and I didn’t have much of a problem with the Enterprise as Discovery imagined it. But as a series, Discovery is so dark, so dystopian, so departed from the kind of engaging storytelling at which Trek *can* excel, so disjointed that I just don’t care what happens to any of the characters. It’s just a chaotic, disjointed, retconned mess.

Picard, IMHO, was better, and I did stick with it the entire season, but one season of torture, eye gouges, and revisionism is enough. I want Trek with adventures and optimism, not space gore and cheap VFX. I want greatness like “The Inner Light,” “Yesterday’s Enterprise,” or “City on the Edge of Forever.” Do better, because Trek has *been* better – not just a sci-fi show sold solely by it’s name.

Do better – or don’t. After giving it all an honest try, and being so disappointed in both overall, I honestly don’t care anymore. Disco stuck a thousand years in the future is just about right. Keep it there.

Given the fiscal health of CBS/Viacom, it may all be academic anyway. I just wish someone involved with the production would just admit to the mistakes. And, to be sure, I wish Kurtzman would just go away. Far, far away.

EXACTLY! Well said!

Yes indeed, very well said! I miss the Star Trek where the stories were every bit as much a star of the show as the actors. Even the music was a character too, as was the ship. It was a place I wanted to exist. It was a place to escape to for an hour each week and (largely) feel better about the world afterwards. I haven’t felt that after after Picard or Disco I’m afraid. Both leave me largely depressed. Writers seem largely scared to write genuine optimism these days for fear of being seen as ‘unhip’ or ‘soft’. It takes more imagination to write too. It’s far easier to do grimdark… The failures of both shows for me at least, is 100% down to the writing. Both still feel like an emo imitation of Star Trek to me. Such a pity as the casts and production values are all there in spades.

P.S. As an aside, is it me imagining things (I was rather tired when I saw the finale of Picard) or have they since edited out a somewhat brief scene where Picard, having just awoken in his new body, asks how they achieved his transference and they mention they’d scanned in/cloned/backed up his brain when he was there being checked up upon (some time before he died). Or have I totally imagined this? It’s driving me nuts haha!

You are right about one thing. Nothing will improve as long as Alex Kurtzman is running the franchise. Until he and his hack writing team is replaced, we will continue to get these half-baked nonsense stories.

I jumped you about something else upthread, but right with you on this point. I wonder if undiluted, unrewritten Chabon would have gotten us better results, though. (and I still wonder what Meyer might have brought to DSC if they’d actually let him do his thing.)

I have to disagree with you. For me, the second season of Discovery was excellent and a vast improvement over that pretty rocky first series. There was much of the spirit of Trek in Season Two to me. I’m sure that some of you will tell me I’m wrong, will insult me, tell me I am not a fan if I like Discovery. But it is my opinion and it is every bit as valid as other people’s.

Well said my friend

Funny how those “mistakes” are coming in a show that’s popular and making the company money.

I’d like to make a mistake that makes me money.

Whereas I and just about everybody I know who has ever made their own zero-budget films have been very happy to get something right w/o turning a dime on it. It’s about the process and especially the final work, quit trying to equate somebody else’s money with your own joy when rationalizing your POV. t.

I can’t not love Frakes. He is just full of Star Trek.

So true!

Frakes is Star Trek! Frakes is life!

“They didn’t want to find room in their hearts for another Star Trek, which there clearly is.”

No Mr. Frakes. We WANT Star Trek. STD is not Star Trek. It is about a spoiled black female. That is it. Nothing else. Star Trek is about a ship (or station), her crew, and exciting missions. ST Picard was just so slow and boring. We want something like Star Trek Pike. With a new story every week and maybe a 2-parter here and there. Something simple. Just like all the Star Trek before the crap we have now.

I’d urge you to reconsider your position on Bernham and here is why. She actually did the rational thing regardless of how politically incorrect in urging Starfleet to open fire on the Klingons to prevent a war potentially with great personal sacrifice. Would Picard have ever done that? That was a Kirk ready to violate the neutral zone in Balance of Terror moment for the greater good. In the future she might solve way too many problems too easily, but I would never call her character spoiled after that.
I personally LOVE her character after that pilot, just wish they gave her some character development after that. Maybe Season 3, where she is more free to achieve redemption, will solve that.

Picard was willing to use force when necessary. He violated the neutral zone in “The Defector.”

Let’s be honest, Picard would have been that Admiral blabing about how the Klingons MUST want peace with the glorious humans because of all the inherent glory just before that Klingon ship rammed into it.
Your right though, I’m in shock Picard was even willing to sneak across an imaginary line.

Star Trek is NOT about a single person. Even Shatner didn’t have as much screen time as Burnham. Or Picard. Or Janeway. Or Sisco. Or Archer. Every show was about Burnham. If you took her out of the show you would have three hours of nonsense. They should have called it the Burnham Show or BS for short. Not to mention she promoted mutiny on more than one occasion, attacked her captain, then got her killed…god, I could go on all night. Most of the characters on the ship have absolutely no backstory. Because every episode is geared to Burnham. The only time we got a character backstory is when she was killed in that episode. Pitiful. Hell, I really don’t even know the names of the rest most of the crew. Why bother when they get 1-2 minutes of screen time each episode. The script should read ‘Hey You #___’ for a character reading. Why waste time with a name.

For both your sakes and ours, please take your Trek card and leave. The only place that racism and misogyny has in Star Trek is to explore the ideas to understand the human condition, and understand the fear and danger that those ideas bring about. There is no place for Trek “fans” to espouse those same horrendous beliefs.

Absolutely nothing Alczar said is espousing racism and misogyny. The only ones that should leave, are Star Trek haters such as yourself

I still have a big problem with Pike sitting out the war out on the rim. You know Kirk wouldn’t have done that, shoot, even chatty Picard didn’t go that route in FC. That’s character assassination through the writer’s room, directed toward just getting a mid-season moment where the character gets validated with a vanity-job from an Admiral.

You do realize it is heavily implied that the Big D sat out the Dominion War.

No, I’ve not gotten that impression from aired stuff. I consider that a b-t-s production call that was as deficient as most of Berman’s thinking all throughout his tenure.

No, I think he’s right. It was implied in Insurrection the Enterprise was far away from the Dominion war front and doing more diplomatic missions to shore up support for it. I can’t remember the species name they met at the beginning of the film but they had formed an alliance with them because of the war IIRC.

And I’m not sure how Pike not being involved would be character assassination? We seen him in barely anything up until now, at least in the prime universe.

ALL 23rd century Trek captains, unless they are straw man TOS movie skippers, are men of action. You can make it more trekkian by dwelling on the decision he weighs and makes before taking action, but in the end he does take that action and accepts consequences for same. I don’t get that Pike would accept an intellectual argument that keeping the E out of harm’s way is the way to go (and I certainly don’t see it either, you have to pitch it as ‘a battle that one more ship won’t make a difference’ like YESTERDAY’S E, with history on your side to prove the argument.)

Oh no, not a black feeeeeeeeeeeemale!

back to the basement, incel. Mom has your chicken tendies ready.

Yeah his comment about her race, which is irrelevant, is highly inappropriate and a very racist dog whistle.

Stop gatekeeping. You do not get to decide for everyone else what is and what is not Star Trek. It is toxic and immature behaviour. And besides don’t think you are fooling anyone: we all know you’ll be watching Season 3 just to hate on the fact the show stars an actress of colour in the lead role

I loathe Discovery. The notion that what makes it bad is the fact that it is about “a spoiled black female” is utterly appalling to me. I am embarrassed to be linked via my dislike for the show to a sorry individual like you, Alczar.

Woah. Really? What exactly does the Actress’ race have to do with ANYTHING?

That’s very un Trek of you. And offensive to me.

Damn! “Spoiled BLACK FEMALE” (emphasis mine) pretty much exposed you for what you are – both a racist and misogynist. Impressive you were able to convey that in three words. As such, beyond this point none of your opinions can be considered at all worthwhile, full stop.

You trivialise actual racism and misogyny with these assumptions of yours. Burnham IS female and she IS black and her behaviour IS selfish and arrogant. Check your fake outrage

I watched neither DSC nor PIC to make sure I hated it. I watched them because I love Star Trek. Both recent instalments have been disappointing to me, but that’s my personal preference. Some folks love the new shows and that’s fine too. I wonder what additional context surrounded Mr Frakes’ comment – taken on its own it seems divisive, although I doubt that was the entire exchange. I’ll continue to watch in the hope that some nuTrek appeals to me. It’s unlikely I’ll re-watch, though. I have classic canon universe Trek for that.

Yes. That is how I feel. Why rewatch something that is boring to me when I have every other episode of every other Trek to watch? Even BSG reruns are still entertaining. The best part of Picard was the last episode. But even it piddled out into nothing. There was more excitement in the episode Exodus (Battlestar Galactica) than there was on the entire STD and ST Picard series combined!

It’s the same with DSC for me. I’ve watched both seasons and I never get the urge to watch them again. Unlike the classic shows which I could watch ad nauseam – the new iteration (from 2009 on really) just doesn’t have that appeal for me.

Also, wasn’t “exodus” the one with the Adama manoeuvre? Frak that was cool!

See this opinion I can agree with. I too think the classic Trek shows are just more repeatable and why so many of us can rewatch them over and over again. I grew up watching TOS dozens of times when that’s all that was on. Then I did the same for TNG, DS9 and VOY. Enterprise was really the first show I didn’t want to rewatch in the beginning but even now that’s changed a lot. None of those shows were perfect and minus TOS they all started off rocky but all of them has a lot of fun, thoughtful or introspective stories in EVERY season.

For DIS and PIC, they are just so connected you don’t have the same pull and I think ultimately that’s the problem for me. I have liked each season better than the last so its getting better but it’s still not something I feel the NEED to rewatch. Maybe because its so new? I don’t know but I said this in another thread since PIC has ended I been watching a lot of the old shows a lot more now (especially these days ;)) and it’s crazy decades later I can still watch many of them as I’m watching them for the first time. That doesn’t mean EVERY episode or even most, but more than enough when you combine all the classic shows.

I WANT to feel that way with the Kurtzman shows and maybe in time I will but we’ve had a total of nearly 40 episodes and outside of a scant few I have very little pull to watch again.

As for the Kelvin movies, I’ve watched all of them at least three times each so that’s pretty decent IMO, even if I don’t think any of them are my top favorites, at least they are entertaining enough to rewatch.

I know what you mean.

I even enjoy going back to s1 of TNG, DS9 or VOY and watching some of them. There are some great episodes in the early seasons of those shows – ENT had the weakest s1 I think, but I can still sit and watch them again.

With the new shows I can’t even think of a single episode I’d want to go back over. It could be the interconnectedness of these new shows, but I could point to mid-season episodes of s6 of DS9 that I enjoy, or even s3 of ENT.

DSC s2 felt like it was trying harder to do a season long story arc – and it was a vast improvement over the side quest into a parallel universe in s1. But the story was daft. “Oh no the galaxy will be destroyed if we don’t find the gizmo to get on the Death Star” (I may be drawing parallels with the final film of another well known franchise there).

PIC felt like “wheel spinning: the next generation” week in week out – Picard must have explained the story of the show around half a dozen times to various characters. The whole show seemed to be window dressing for the Data scenes and the best scene of the whole show (for me at least) was when Rios was explaining his prior dealings with Sudra. I wanted to see *that* story.

As for the Kelvin films – I don’t so much mind the first one, I can deal with into darkness in small doses (it’s like the curate’s egg). Beyond I genuinely enjoyed – I can sit through that one no problem.

I wonder if it’s a modern TV thing. I mean I’ve seen Game of Thrones, Westworld, The Expanse, Man in the High Castle, The Boys, etc. But I’ve only watched them once.

I’d be tempted to watch some of them again, even knowing how they end – but not just yet.

I feel like Kirk and Gorkon in TUC: “if there is to be a brave new world, our generation is going to have the hardest time living in it…”

I guess you just need it to be about a bunch of white men to relate and enjoy it.

“I watched neither DSC nor PIC to make sure I hated it. I watched them because I love Star Trek.”

This! You absolutely nailed it.

Besides, what is Frakes point when saying that folks were unsure about TNG because they wanted Kirk, Spock, Bones? Both Discovery & Picard were FILLED with beloved characters we did know from earlier shows. And while they were often the best parts of the show (Pike was great, Sarek was great, I also did enjoy the conversations between Spock & Burnham, Riker was bad-ass in the Picard season finale) ultimately it felt like cheap approaches to throw sand in the eyes of the critical fans. For example, “bad-ass Riker” was there to cover up for the lame Deux Ex Machina scene. Yeah, it sure is very satisfying when a character who has not much to do with the actual show is the one saving the day.

And the TOS-characters (and the Enterprise) were the highlights of Discovery. What does it tell us about the show?

I think the point about fans being upset about tng when it first came on is equivocation – it’s an excuse that’s been thrown around since dsc started. It’s like the old “oh well tng took 3 seasons to get going” cop out – tng was made in a very different era of tv. What show in this day and age is given 3 seasons to breathe and grow? Come on. If it’s not great out of the gate it’s cancelled. DSC and PIC have both stumbled out of the gate in my opinion. I can appreciate Mr Frakes being proud of the work he has done on these two shows (which is ultimately what I think he’s trying to say), but his reasoning with the TNG comparison is an overused excuse in my view.

As for Pike, Spock etc., they were lukewarm in DSC as far as I’m concerned. I don’t understand the hype and apparent demand for a Pike show. It’d be discovery with another coat of TOS paint slapped on it. Seeing the “enterprise” in discovery did nothing for me – I don’t believe in the visual reboot fallacy as the visuals are part of canon in my opinion, so seeing all the unnecessary changes was off-putting.

And “bad ass Riker” didn’t do anything for me either. I was thinking “I remember TNG when Riker took his job seriously. Yes, he could be easy going and jovial, but when he was in command he was all business. I don’t know who this guy is”.

“Ima kick your treacherous Tal Shiar ass all the way back to Romulus cos you’re a stinky head!” – “acting Captain” Will Riker

(Ok I’m being hyperbolic there, but that’s how that line came across to me. It was no “take your best shot, Locutus, cos we are about to intervene”).

PIC should have been about Rios and Raffi and their parallel stories of leaving starfleet.

The whole show would have made more sense if it centred on LaForge (Picard seemed to be subbing for Geordi in this whole series. See “the most toys” for Picard’s reaction to data’s death).

Maybe I’ll like the next show – what are we waiting on? Lower Decks? That should be… a television show with the name “Star Trek” slapped on it… haha!

Not to mention there was production hell behind the scenes for TNG’s first 3 seasons, constant turnover behind the scenes, writers strike etc.

And yet there are some great episodes in those first three seasons. The battle, the arsenal of freedom, heart of glory, conspiracy, the neutral zone, too short a season, 11011001 (the bynars one), datalore, the last outpost, hide and q, where no one has gone before – and that’s just season 1. All great episodes.

Well… That’s debatable. I do consider Heart of Glory to be one of the best episodes of the entire series and that was in season 1. But there were no other gems in the first 2 seasons. I do recall being interested in Conspiracy but they never returned to that story. Maybe STP S2 could pick up on that? Looking back I’m stunned the show survived. It HAD to be because fans were watching only because it was new Star Trek and tolerated it.

I’d debate “the inner light” being “one of the greatest fan favourites” too haha!

“The emissary” is a good one in s2, as is “peak performance”. No season of TNG is without flaws (“sub rosa” anyone?). There seems to be this generally held idea that seasons 1 and 2 are no good, but that’s like saying “the odd numbered films are no good”. Star Treks 1 and 3 are two of the best.

I’d enjoy it if PIC s2 followed up on Conspiracy, though – although I don’t think it’d be nearly enough of a threat for nuTrek unless the conspiracy parasites threatened all of existence.

While I don’t have such a negative view on the use of Pike, Spock, Riker etc. as you do, I’d agree mostly with what you are saying.

Personally I was very dissapointed with “Number One”, she was totally dumbed down, sadly. If I remember corectly, her response to what happened to the Discovery in the season 2 finale simply was: “Boom!” – well, that’s super smart. I like science.

I think my negativity forwards Riker, Spock, et al. stemmed from the fact that I would have preferred something new. A new setting – past or future – but one that looked like it belonged in that era.

DSC was so jarring and it was anchored to Spock even in s1 – the Vulcan who adopted Burnham didn’t need to be Sarek in my opinion. Then the characters were mostly unlikable and the story was ridiculous.

As for PIC, I honestly think Picard didn’t need to be in the show at all. Nor Riker nor Seven, etc.

What happened to the days when a Trek show could focus on a crew of Starfleet officers who explore space? Is the Star Trek universe so small and restricted that we need to focus on people we’ve already seen before? Do we need to throw them into wars or extinction level events just to create drama?

Any one random lunch scene with Bashir and Garak was more dramatic than anything DSC or PIC have offered up throughout.

Ima climb down off my high horse now lol!

I nave no problem welcoming new iterations of Star Trek into my life. I grew up on TOS but have never felt threatened by new characters and actors taking over established roles. I’ve given every Trek show a chance and have enjoyed most of them to one degree or another.

What I do have a problem with is material that is poorly written, and Discovery and Picard had a lot of that: characters and subplots that were introduced and went nowhere, gratuitous violence and gore, completely ignoring science and even common sense, major events happening to characters with nary a thought given to their ramifications.

So yes, I have watched Discovery and Picard to this point; the difference between those shows and prior ones is that I have zero desire to re-watch any of these Nu Treks. With every episode so far, once has been enough for me. And while I am mildly curious to see what Picard turns into in its second season, I have zero interest in The Adventures of Incomparably Superior Michael Burnham and Her Well Meaning But Ultimately Inferior Friends; it is for me the most poorly constructed show with the words “Star Trek” attached to it that I have ever seen. My dissatisfaction has nothing to do with the actors by the way, only the way they and the stories they inhabit are written.

I appreciate and enjoy Frakes, but he has no choice but to tout the products here, they’re paying the bills. And I’m sure the actors are great people and everyone gets along wonderfully. Sadly, overall the writing on the two shows mentioned has been largely insipid and shallow and forgettable, imo, with no rewatch value for this 40 + year fan. There’s just no ‘must watch’ factor to these shows. Picard was ok and I’m mildly interested in what they do next season, but they really could have ended it right at the finale. As for DSC, I’m done and AA has been cancelled. If that’s what the show runners were hoping for, happy to oblige.

I agree with most of what he said. Us fans are too judgemental. Let’s seize the moment and enjoy what we have together as a Star Trek community.

I don’t have CBS All Access either since I’m done with Picard. Nothing against DSC. The writing was not what we hoped for but let’s celebrate what we got.

I’m a Star Trek fan for 10 years now. My first experience with Star Trek was seeing the 2009 Star Trek movie for the first time when I was 7 years old. By the way, I’m an 18 year old adult.

I’ll never be one to say Discovery and Picard aren’t “true” Star Trek or anything. If it has the Star Trek name on it, it’s Star Trek as far as I’m concerned. I just wish the writing was better in these new series — on a basic level of TV dramatic writing, not only as a continuation of the Star Trek brand. Sorry, but I need a little more than nostalgic and melodramatic shortcuts to make me care about the characters and the story. In any TV show or movie.

So I’ll keep watching, not to “hate” but in the hope it gets better, as other Trek series have. Though I have to admit, at this point, that hope has faded somewhat.

Apart from all that, I do love Jonathan Frakes. Seeing him in the captain’s chair again shouting orders was a treat.

Yep. I still watch my ball club even when they suck with the hope they will improve. That is not checking in to see if you hate them. It is called being a fan. Big difference.

I have a complicated relationship with Star Trek.

Jonathan Frakes is spot on how fans love to hate the new shows. For the most part I thought Picard was amazing. I wasn’t a fan of Discovery in the beginning but I accept it as Star Trek canon now.

Star Trek means a lot of things to people. There has to be a balance between expectations and perfection. Let’s wait and see for the final verdict. That’s all I have to say.

I’m curious if he’s gonna guest star on The Orville at some point…

When you watch an episode of TNG and then an episode of Discovery, you’d never guess that these shows were within the same franchise. The problem with Discovery is it’s ambition. It wants to be Game of Thrones. The secret sauce of TNG was simplicity. That doesn’t mean you can’t have a serialized narrative. Discovery wants to hit you over the head with production value. “Look how much money we spent”. So when characters get into an elevator, you don’t just see the characters taking, we cut to an expensive CGI shot of the elevator maneuvering throughout the ship, and then back to the characters. This adds to the budget, bigger budget means more mass appeal.

Watch TNG and notice how little music there is. How much silent ambiance there is. I love that. Discovery is all big camera movies and lens flares and quick cutting and music. It’s style over substance.

Paramount made a discovery(see what I did there?) when they made nuTReK: Star Trek just isn’t very popular. Oh it has a large fan base and there’s money to be made but 2/3 of the films lost money and that first film? It wasn’t a very big hit either. Let’s be honest here. Star Trek 2009 is the most popular of ALL the Trek films in regards to general audiences. And it barely made a profit. Star Trek is never going to be Star Wars or Iron Man. None of those movies made close to 500 million world wide. None of them made over 300 million domestic. Those are the kinds of numbers needed to sustain a franchise. Movies like Star Trek, effects driven tent pole films, cost over 150 million to make and more to market. That’s just the way it is.

So these new shows are trying to make new fans. Make Star Trek cool and popular and zeitgeisty. They can’t count on the existing fans. You didn’t even buy that amazing blu ray set of TNG that paramount/CBS spent a fortune on.

Star Trek will never be what it was. So we can all give up on that dream. It use to be easy and fairly cheap to make. But those days are gone. Limits fuel the imagination and the fact that those old shows couldn’t afford or achieve anything they wanted, the writing had to compensate. That’s no longer the case. If TNG had the budget of Discovery, we wouldn’t have had The Borg. It would’ve been that insect looking species originally developed.

Jonathan Frakes is such a treasure to the franchise. I would LOVE to work with him as an actor. You can tell he is just such a natural motivator. Such a jovial spirit at conventions too!

“But they’re watching! … They’re watching to make sure they hate it!”

lol

I think my problem with Picard and modern Star Trek is the same as most fans’. I don’t see it being verbalised the way I’m criticising it.

I am criticising it with a level head. The usual knee-jerk response to anyone’s negatives comments is “oh yeah! let’s see you write the series then.”

That’s not helpful. On either side.

Writing a TV show or movie is obviously very hard and requires a special talent.

But with Star Trek… here is the primary thing that is missing.

When we watch Discovery or Picard or a JJ Abrams movie… we close off the episode and go… whoa…. what the hell is up with that GIANT plot hole. What the hell is up with that inexplicable magic piece of fantasy technology that is thrown in there in a way that is not previously overly done with this very specific franchise.

We don’t react like that to the same degree in the franchise’s previous incarnations.

So… I am grateful for, say, the new Picard series. I’m glad it was produced. I want it to succeed.

But it’s almost like if they just would write it… or even cut it together… but let a few dozen qualified industry superfans watch it before it’s released. So we can go… ummmm… did you just let the head of Starfleet Security run away with Romulans without repercussions while simultaneously making Picard an android?

Then maybe they can go back and go… hmmmm…. you’re right… let’s take a day or two to edit in a few lines of dialogue to make this less ridiculous to the people we are actually producing this for.

Problem solved?

Mr. Frakes… don’t be trite, sir. We’re not watching it to make sure we hate it. We’re watching it because we fell in deep love with the superb dedication to crafting meaningful and entertaining stories that followed clear logic.

If TNG was produced for HBO in the 90’s and was ripe with admirals telling Picard to “shut the F up”… . I suspect there would’ve been no demand in 2020 for a revisiting of these characters.

I’m not sure what Starfleet could have done about Oh. The Zhat Vash had a humungous fleet and they weren’t about to give her up. The only way to take her into custody would have been to fight the Romulans, and that would have been disastrous for both sides.

I think we all wanted to see this: Oh at HQ outsmarting Starfleet and making her escape in a Starfleet ship which eventually rendezvous with a very hidden Romulan Warbird. Where are the standing sets from TNG? Destroyed? ((Even in Discovery, they made Lorca’s capture in the shuttle rather mysterious))

Then Riker, on Nepethene, realizing something is up with his buddy, could actually go “Rambo” — cut his hair, put on his uniform, get beamed up to a new ship… and then have a real Starfleet vs Romulan “Balance of Terror.”

Part of the problem of Picard’s narrative is that it relies on Starfleet being rather lazy when supposedly they are paranoid. Oh is half Vulcan/Half Romulan but this is never exploited. It’s one of those things where there could have been scenes that showed her interact with Romulans on Behalf of Starfleet and make her seem like she distrusted Romulans. Make her Fantomas, make her the Joker… etc.

ST:EXP, there seems to be a limit to how much going back to shoot scenes that can be done.

In fact, Kurtzman mentioned that in one of the early Deadline podcasts when Kirsten Beyer talked about how authors writing a novel can go back to add things in early chapters when they realize that they are necessary for the plot. Kurtzman actually said, that he wished it didn’t mean so much expensive reshooting.

He also said that his inclination is to actually shoot things when there is a debate among the writers or producers and someone has a strong view that something is needed, then see if the scene works/fits in editing.

The problem seems to be that the plotlines and threads are being finalized in editing. Rather than struggling in preproduction on how to fit in the resolution with the XBs for example, they shot a scene and then felt it just didn’t work with the flow of the finale. Leaving this scene behind in post undermined the entire Borg as victims messaging, and diminished Seven’s arc. Even Chabon feels this ‘sucked’.

While Kurtzman’s collegiality and respect for diverse creative voices is a strength, and I wouldn’t want Trek to be subject to McFarlane’s kind of strong-handed single auteur vision, it’s more than fair to say that SH has a way to go to find an effective way of working on serialized Trek that allows for both coherence and creativity.

Serialized Trek isn’t going to have the injections of ideas from spec scripts to mix things up. This was arguably also one of the creative weaknesses of the later seasons of Voyager and all of Enterprise. And reportedly the Discovery showrunners in S2 became abusive in their attempts at control, which is unacceptable.

All to say, I can see why Kurtzman absolutely needs to find a way to let the creatives experiment without the showrunners having too heavy a hand. So far though, his willingness to permit writers to write it, shoot it and make it coherent in editing just isn’t successful for me and many others.

TG47 I’m disappointed about Picard because the ending was full of plot holes, that’s it. Picard most of it was fantastic.

I’m feeling much the same Faze Ninja, but after 2 seasons of Discovery and 1 of Picard, there seems to be a pattern of unresolved plotholes.

We have enough information from interviews with the EPs about the process to understand why it keeps happening, even with a stable writers room.

Can’t say I can offer a solution, other than to recommend Kurtzman insist that well advanced draft scripts for an entire season of episodes (not just outlines) are completed before the season starts production, but the problematique seems pretty clear.

Perhaps with the current production shutdown, at least one or two of the live action series could give the ‘write it all before shooting’ approach a try and see how it works out.

Remember “Conspiracy” from S1 of TNG? Can we say… over-sarcastically… that most of the new Trek shows are shades of that? A corrupt Starfleet … some out-of-place gore… and a bunch unresolved far-fetched plot seeds never to be revisited again? :)

TG47, your comments are very interesting from a process POV. I don’t really imagine personally working on a show with so many writers, and it can’t be easy to engage in the battle of ideas. I think for ST, the best approach might be one taken on Mad Men and The Wire, two series with a strong voice and identity. And B5 of course!

A well-thought out and tight criticism. Just wanted to make sure people are aware there are plenty of us who appreciate the product but have reasonable problems with certain aspects. Kudos!

would love him to direct another ST feature

I hope Frakes is preparing himself for directing the pilot to Section Thirty-One. I also predict Romijn, Mount, and Peck have received the call to free-up their schedules, and prepare to reprise their roles as Number One, Pike, and Spock III. We should hear some announcements in the weeks following the return to semi-normal life.
I have no inside information, just instincts for this stuff. I had expected a CBS press release announcing information on the status of Sec. 31 and one more live action ST series, (which would be the Pike/Spock series) but the country went into a holding pattern with this terrible scourge on human-kind.
We could really use the real McCoy right about now, along with Bev Crusher, Julian Bashir, ‘The Doctor’,Phlox, and maybe even the CMO of Discovery. (Once we meet him/her/hir/it, etc.)

I thought Pollard was Discovery’s CMO.

Dr Pollard has the insignia of a lieutenant, while Dr Hugh Culber is a Lt Cmdr.

So, despite Pollard running Sick-bay during the transit to the future, she doesn’t seem to be Culber’s superior officer.

Perhaps the CMO stayed behind with the Enterprise. Not everyone went forward with the Discovery. Perhaps the CMO had attachments in the 24th century that they couldn’t leave behind? Or, perhaps they were a casualty.

Jonathan Frakes states that Picard watchers are still watching to make sure they hate it. Not true at all. I stopped watching Picard just half way through season 1,and I won’t watch it any longer.Im 55 and when TNG came out I remember well the adjustment and I rode it out till it got really good,but I never hated it in the beginning and it never made me stop watching a single episode. No, I’m sorry. Discovery and Picard are just terrible shows,with terrible writing. My son told me Kurtzman killed off data (or his essence) and picard in a single episode. WTF? This show just sucks. It’s too dark and the swearing is not of Star Trek and Picard isn’t Picard, he’s a feeble old man who gets told off and disrespected after saving the Federation on numerous occasions. The Next Generation used to make me feel good and positive even though there were the bad guys. Picard is not the show we need in this day and age of negativity and darkness. The great bird of the Galaxy is truly spinning in his grave,and Star Trek is truly dead. Discovery + Picard = Discard.

Myself, I kept watching TNG ONLY because it was new Trek. The movies were fun but I wanted to see it on TV again. So I was happy as hell when TNG was announced. I was not happy they put the show 75 years later. But I understood why they did it. I watched it anyway. The characters were bland and weak. But I watched it anyway. The first two seasons were largely garbage but I watched it anyway. Why? It was NEW Star Trek!! That was pretty much the only reason. Then came the 3rd season. The characters did not get better but the episodes sure as hell did. So yes, I too disagree with the idea that those who don’t like nu-new-Trek are watching to make sure they hate it. I think most are watching as fans. Seeing that it currently is not good but holding out hope it will get better.

You can’t have a valid argument without watching the full season. Granted, there were a lot of plot holes and I’m still not sure the obligatory gore is always justified, but the themes of this particular season of Star Trek (and it /is/ Star Trek) are right in line with the best of the franchise.

Picard is defeated and had lost his confidence in the potential of humanity. Something happens that triggers his innate desire to help those in need. Through the journey, he realizes he has made mistakes and seeks to better himself while still helping others. He also fights for and helps give a voice to a minority group of individuals who are being oppressed. In the end, I, personally was absolutely uplifted and felt strong surges of hope and love.

You can’t judge Trek on plot holes. For Spock’s sake, they travel faster than light, meet countless aliens that all look human-ish, and destroy themselves every time they transport. These are all things that have happened since the beginning!

Star Trek is about themes and characters. Something I’ve actually been very impressed with both DISCO and PIC is that they’ve managed to get that across despite trying to only do season long serialized story arcs.

So, before you and anyone else decide an entire show’s effort (painstakingly brought to us by hundreds of talented individuals) is not worth it, maybe try watching the whole series. Like all our friends and family, you may come to love it, flaws and all.

hahahaha omg that’s awesome… i love him “They’re watching to make sure they hate it!”

He is funny, why so many love Frakes! :)

Phew! Thank you Mr Frakes for not doing a Chabon, Isaacs, Cruz and instantly dismissing Trek fans who don’t care much for Discovery and Picard as basically Hitler.

Sadly, unless something drastic is done to make both shows science fiction rather than science fantasy, to stop trying to be Marvel with epic galactic threats every six months and to develop coherent stories, I can’t see myself and many others coming around to them. Good luck though.

Blame the audience. Lame, and insulting, Frakes! No, I’m not having problems with ‘unfamiliar stuff’ by rejecting ripped out eyeballs, primitive and anachronistic language (for the 24th century as portrayed previously), rookie level serialization and just plain bad writing!

Frankly, I used to defend this guy even seeing he didn’t get as many directing jobs on Trek as some people likely only picked because of their “diversity”, but after some of his political rants (and him being the director of mentioned gore episode 5, which was probably the most universally reviled episode of this season for this and other reasons), I understood he is part of the problem rather than the solution.

Actors, directors and writers are people, not BETTER people, period, so it would suit him (and Stewart too) to get off his high horse and listen to paying customers who are not happy with the KIND OF CHANGE being enacted on Trek (not change per se), which is, a general dumbing down of the show to appease a divisive and abrasive zeitgeist. Not cool!

okay boomer

“zeitgeist”? What is this? Some Kind of Nazi word?

Zeitgeist: “the defining spirit or mood of a particular period of history as shown by the ideas and beliefs of the time.”

You will be unsurprised to learn that Vulcan soul used the word incorrectly.

Fandoms are toxic these days. Star Trek, Star Wars, you name it. Fans are worst.

I’m not your average fan nor should you be average. Be above average and special.

Do you know the proverb “what goes around, comes around”?

People who gang up with perceived “authority” against their own kind always amaze me. “Divide et impera” needs two parties, one who divides, like viewers into “good fans” and “bad fans”, and the other who readily lets it happen (or even actively supports it!) That’s why the few will keep winning against the many. United we are strong, divided we are weak, tools and toys for the mighty!

Agreed VulcanSoul. Let’s review.
“OMG Riker at the pizza joint!!!”
“Uh.. you know, this could be a lot more than someone we know serving pizza. Like exploration and strange new worlds and the like”
“AAAHHHH!!! How dare you speak for everyone!!! SILENCE!!!! WE WANT PIZZA TALK ONLY!!!”

They barely talked about pizza. Picard and Riker were mostly talking about the character struggles that Picard and Soji were going through. The entire season was about Picard exploring and discovering new life and a new civilization. It was different from a traditional Star Trek show, but exploration was very much at the season’s core.

Interesting. I sure didn’t see it that way. I saw it as Picard thinking this might be a way to keep his friend’s “spirit” alive. Little else.

The show is a lot more fun when you assume Picard (the organic one) is actually suffering from Stockholm syndrome and actually doing the work of the Borg (they are the real winners of being able to engineer life. No need for organics anymore, they’ll just upgrade the unimind). Why else would Picard want to engineer robots into slaves for his evacuation fleet (he just really missed Data that much?)
Season 2 in this case should be about the “new” Picard trying to find redemption given the failings of the old, potentially sacrificing himself to make amends.

You know the old saying. If everything you disagree with is toxic then maybe you’re the one who’s toxic.

Never bite the hand that feeds you!

Bite it if you must!

I think Frakes misses the point. It is not because it is new or different or too dark that we do not like Picard and Discovery. That we would get used to (f-bombs) We do not like it because of fantasy-technology (mushroom-drive and imagination repair flute, golem technology that potentially grants everybody eternal life, no more stakes ) because of people acting stupidly (200 ships warp in because of a crisis, 2 minutes later crisis solved, everbody goes away, consequences do not matter and are solved off screen i.e. synth-ban gone) and because of storylines that went nowhere ( lots of examples on Disco and Picard). That is why we do not like the new shows. Not because of bad stories. Bad stories come and go, but if you do create rules for your universe or you do not stick to establised rules and canon then it retroactivly destroys the rest of the shows also. That’s why it is bad. And all can be attributed to bad or lazy writers. Just one more thought and it could be good, but no. For example the romulan forensic device from the he-man movie that alows you to see past events. Nothing is explained, it just can show the past. Why not have the romulan device hack in every camera and microphone in a 50 yard radius, the replicator camera and microphone, the one from the laptop the cctv on the street and then create an image or video from that. But no, it just does. No thought behind it. That’s lazy writing. Why have a fantasy-device that repairs the ship. Why not just have Rios work for hours to repair his ship because he is a good with tech. Lazy writing.

I love Frakes as he seems a stand-up guy, but forgive me for saying he is papering over the cracks. Picard has real issues. I don’t even recognize Picard. If you read those scripts and removed the character names you would never in a million years think that was Picard. The writing is not good. Also why is it one long story (eggs in one basket)? Why is it not episodic with perhaps an underlying reason for him getting back in the game? It really saddens me that modern writers have seemingly lost their way (perhaps due to Lost!?).

I don’t think it is a bad thing to not recognize a person after 20 years. People do change over that time. I’ve been married to Mrs ML31 for 20 years and she sure isn’t the same person I married back then. And I know I’m not the same guy either.

Don’t play with fire.

Jonathan Frakes absolutely nailed it!

Not at all, he comes off as clueless

I won’t get into the argument about whether these new shows are or aren’t ‘Star Trek’ – it is up to the right’s holders to say what that is, frankly.

A better topic is to discuss why these new shows are, for the most part, complete and utter trash.

Star Trek (and much of sci-fi for that matter) ceased to be about fun, adventure, discovery, commentary and wonder about the universe and became instead about politics, ideo-political preaching and self-indulgent, and pointless mystery-box tease and switch storytelling.

Why is it that modern media is still leaning on the original work of people who were part of the so-called Greatest Generation? Serling, Roddenberry, Stevens and DeStefano as well as the many writers who came of age in the early postwar years?

Most if not all of these people had real life experiences when life was not the insipidly coddled virtue signalling world we now inhabit. Many had served in the war and lived through the Great Depression. It was a time when television was still new and they needed actual creative people to forge the medium from nothing.

Later we had the people that lived through the tumult of the social upheavals of the 60s and Vietnam. They applied these things to their creative endeavours.

Nowadays we have hucksters and con artists who live in a gilded era of media circle-jerking where the only experience anyone has is getting a gold star from their quasi-communist feminist literature professor for spouting of the appropriate ‘goodthink’ prattle. Kurtzman, Abrahms, Lindelof…and so many others each successive crop comes out even more rancid and pox-ladden than the last.

Star Trek is now about stardom and the legions of fawning fans who can’t help themselves but be led by the mega-corp shills like the children of Hamelin. Star Trek was never really about ‘stardom’ even up to the end of the Rick Berman era. But now Patrick Stewart is a big noise with a ‘Sir’ before his name so of course he gets the keys to the kingdom and the power to turn Picard into his own personal vanity project. But the joke is on you dear ‘fans’ – when Picard says at one point in the show ‘I never really liked sci-fi’ you may have laughed but the joke was on you. Everytime they stroke you with all the ‘legacy of Roddenberry’ nonsense they are laughing at you…all the way to the bank.

Well Stewart and the rest can keep their show and their politics – I sincerely hope that the new CBS Viacom fails and takes the modern incarnation of Star Trek with it where it won’t see the light of day until some people with real creativity can manage the franchise – who knows when that’ll be.

Please don’t frame your opinion as cold hard fact and respect the fact there are some Trek fans who enjoy the show.

If someone is stating something that is quite obviously subjective, there is rarely the need to point that out. The readers know.

I totally agree with your opinion, here here!!!
Ignore those who want to silence, they’ll be happy regardless so long as someone they know is serving some hot pizza.

Yawn.

You really think that life as we know it right now isn’t just as rife with trials as ever before? What is your justification for that? There are a couple generations right now who’s entire adult life has consisted of a never ending war, 9/11, TWO major economic crashes, the constant overhanging dread of climate change, an unprecedented upswing in worldwide authoritarianism, and a global pandemic. You think certain people are ‘coddled’ but from where I see it, the fact that we have any young writers that actually /want/ to continue the story of a character who believes in hope and the future of humanity is positively astounding and I will continue to support their ability to reach for that so called ‘gold star.’

Btw, the moment you complain about politics in Star Trek and use ‘feminist’ as an insult, you’re showing the rest of us that you never got Star Trek in the first place, sir.

I am glad he is there… really. And the work he has done has been the high mark in the whole of the new work. I am NOT a hater… but I still just can’t enjoy the writing, dialogue, or direction. That is subjective and I have no hate to those who love or like it. It just isn’t driving my warp coils.

Based on this short comment alone, I hope you keep watching and commenting! I really enjoyed Picard but had many issues with it and reasonable dissenting opinions are lovely to read and what make fandom fun.

You are not the arbiter of what is and what isn’t reasonable dissent. Every critic of STD and STP has valid points

It was so good to see Jonathan and Marina again, and I’m glad someone who loves Star Trek as much as Mr. Frakes is taking turns at the helm of new installments in the series.

Im sorry Jonathan Frakes but your being disingenuous to the audience. Your cheating it and its vile. I wanted to share Star Trek with my family. Who is the audience?
Michael Chabon insults the audience with ‘piss off or provoke people’ – I might add with no ethical or story reason, just covering up the shows mishaps with insulting attacks. Great job champ.

Quit it with the divisive diversity attacks, its not point scoring for diversity, thats its not clever thats vile too.
Im happy to have the entire bloody cast female, happy to see that, voyager/ds9/tng all had wonderful female characters written well! And any kind of Character is fine in my book. Who who! is going to watch CBS when there are constant divisive point scoring. Shameful and utterly pointless. And self defeating.

Is Picard a tax write off or something? Sure feels that way. Shot in record time with nothing going for it apart from familiar characters to investors?

CBS and Secret Hideout. You cant do long story arcs you suck at it. Quit emulating DC universe your not The Flash or Supergirl.
Quit it with the long arcs, 3-4 episodes tops. Move on! 10 episodes of watered down drivel is painful. I think the A plot was 5 minutes long through out that 10 hours. It was practically shot live.
Couldn’t you have waited for the show to be written.

This isn’t a shoehorn for Discovery, the comparison with Discovery is better or people just want Spock and Kirk is nonsense. They want competent science fiction writers. See: Melinda M. Snodgrass. Someone who was cheated out of residuals i might add.

This is no TNG season 1, it doesnt compare. Its not going to find its feet by season 3, if season 2 of Discovery was anything to go by. Alex Kurtzman is just a factory manager motivating the team to produce a product, because his already been paid for it.

Lastly CBS is in a dire position right now. Star Trek IP is destroyed and cannot be sold to better people. Its forced into making something from nothing and building excuses for it.

Just stop it now.

I had an interesting “conversation” with someone the other day over Zoom (yay for social distancing) who absolutely hated Picard. What I found most striking was his inability to articulate why he disliked it other than that it was horribly written. I asked for him to go into details, what parts, what episodes, etc. And he simply couldn’t. There was almost this blind hatred for Picard – and the more I expressed how I actually liked it (despite it’s flaws) the more angry he seemed to get. This was the first time I had an actual face to face conversation with someone who actively hated nu-Trek (he wasn’t a fan of Discovery either) vs just having a discussion on a message board. It solidified certain things for me – despite what some might say, no amount of nu-Trek will please them. Even if somehow TNG were to be continued with all of the original cast, writers and directors, it still wouldn’t be “real” Trek. I eventually had to stop the conversation, as it became quite apparent the he had no desire to have an intelligent conversation, he just wanted someone to reinforce his viewpoints.

I also die a little inside each time I see interactions like that simply because the whole point of Trek in the first place was to show the benefits of inclusivity and differing of opinions. I’d be remiss of I didn’t say that I’ve found myself on the flip side of that once in a while, though. I suppose we all need to be reminded once in a while to remember nuance, compassion, and perspective. Oh, and to just let people like the things they like once in a while. Lol.

Although I have TONS of issues with STP’s story in Season 1, the characters and performances are all triumphs for Star Trek, some of the best the franchise has seen in decades and it’s ultimately why I love watching it despite the constant eye-rolling. I always feel Star Trek’s success comes down to getting the right cast of characters and actors. And unlike Discovery, the tone and universe feels familiar, they created a recognizable world, even if it felt fairly confined. Even the cursing couldn’t pull me out of that. Discovery is way more ambitious in scope and production, but it also feels like something else and it’s hard to feel the connection to nostalgia I have with Picard. Although the story in Picard was dubious, the character writing is WAY better than Star Trek has been in decades, and that’s the most important thing for me and why I can re-watch every episode many times despite the flaws. The same remains true of TNG, the actors and characters elevate everything no matter how absurd the scenario is or looks. And Picard gave me one of my favorite episodes of Star Trek of all time, “Nepenthe”.

Sorry Frakes, as much as I love everything you’ve done and do, I have to disagree. It’s not the same with STD compare to TNG. It’s just (mostly) no good, the characters are uninteresting and unappealing, the stories are full of plot holes and contrivances, canon isn’t honored but trampled upon, and that’s why it doesn’t have a place in my heart and I can’t rewatch any of it.