The man in charge of the Star Trek Universe on CBS just gave an update on the future of the franchise, including Star Trek: Discovery, Star Trek: Short Treks, and even the Section 31 series.
Kurtzman gives a progress report on Star Trek Universe
In an interview with Gold Derby to discuss the Emmy nominations for Star Trek: Picard and Star Trek: Short Treks, including his own as executive producer of Short Treks, Alex Kurtzman described what it’s like heading up the Star Trek Universe: “It’s exhilarating, it’s terrifying, it’s wonderful, it’s joyful. This is the job you dream of having when you’re a kid.” The extended Zoom interview (which you can watch in full below) offered a lot of insights on his approach to crafting the various Star Trek shows.
As the interview wrapped up, Kurtzman gave a progress report on how the pandemic has been impacting work on the Star Trek Universe:
I think everybody in the world is dealing with some issue of logistical challenges from COVID, from the minor to the radically extreme. We have been running all of our writers’ rooms on Zoom. The silver lining is that we have actually been able to get quite ahead in scripts for upcoming seasons of Discovery, and Picard, and Strange New Worlds—which is going to be shooting next year—and Section 31.
There is a lot to unpack from that statement. Firstly, the third season of Discovery is almost done with post-production (more on that later), so any writing for Discovery would be for the fourth season—hence, his use of the phrase “upcoming seasons.” CBS has yet to announce that the show has been picked up for season four. There have been some hints that Canadian production is planning to get started on season four, but at this point, it is still unofficial. Kurtzman’s comment indicates that his team is at least planning for it.
Kurtzman also says that Star Trek: Strange New Worlds will begin production in 2021. A few weeks ago at Comic-Con@Home, he revealed that ten stories for the first season of the show set on Pike’s Enterprise have already been broken. This new statement shows a level of confidence that the team will be ready with scripts and production and can start next year, indicating that the show will likely premiere in 2022 on the new All Access (which will be rebranded by then too).
One last tidbit from that statement is the mention of the Section 31 series. First announced a couple of years ago, there hasn’t been a lot of news for this new Star Trek show lead by Michelle Yeoh. It has been speculated that it was moved to the back burner, but Kurtzman’s comment indicates that at least it’s still simmering. In 2019 Kurtzman had said they planned to go into production on it after the third season of Discovery wrapped, which happened this past February. Yeoh’s character of Mirror Georgiou is in the third season of Discovery, having jumped forward into the 32nd century with the rest of the crew. Assuming the Section 31 show isn’t set in the far future, it remains to be seen how Yeoh’s character finds her way back in time.
As for Picard, it has been known the second season of that show was supposed to go into production in June, but the pandemic lockdown put that on hold. Kurtzman talked broadly about their approach to getting the various shows back into production in the COVID era:
We are planning on going back into production. A lot of time has been taken coming up with a big plan on how the sets and the stages are going to be run. That is still being iterated right now. Obviously safety being everybody’s number one concern. Everyone is working on that real diligently because everybody wants to go back to work. But nobody wants to do that in a way that is unsafe.
COVID moved Discovery’s season three premiere
Kurtzman also gave an update on how the pandemic impacted Star Trek: Discovery‘s third season:
The thing that I think we are very lucky about is we wrapped Discovery ten days before the lockdown happened. The challenge that imposed is it slowed post [production] down quite a bit. It slowed visual effects and editing. I am now editing with my editors and we are both on our laptops. Obviously the visual effects companies took a very hard hit and it took a minute for them to get back on their feet after everything that happened. When it comes to recording music, you can’t have musicians in an orchestra in a room anymore, so each musician is individually recording their instrument and sending it to Jeff Russo our composer and Jeff has to mix them together as if they are all sitting together in a room. So all of that takes a lot longer.
That being said, everybody’s been heroic about it. I think it’s given everybody purpose. We get to keep working and keep occupying ourselves during this very difficult and challenging time…We’re almost done. We are done editing and we are still doing work on the mixes and visual effects, but it will all be coming out soon.
The new season of Discovery is now set to debut on October 15. Kurtzman confirmed how COVID has juggled the schedule for 2020:
I can’t wait for people to see it and I am so sad people couldn’t see it in the spring when it was originally supposed to come out. But that is what COVID did to us.
This confirms earlier reporting on Star Trek: Lower Decks debuting earlier than planned, when season three of Discovery moved from the spring into the fall. According to Mike McMahan, this schedule juggling is the reason why an international streaming partner for Lower Decks wasn’t in place in time for the show launch in the USA and Canada.
Update on second seasons of both animated Trek shows
While the COVID pandemic has had a big impact on live-action shows, Kurtzman noted that the two animated series haven’t been slowed down:
The good news for the animated shows, is those shows have been barreling ahead, full steam ahead. Both Lower Decks and Star Trek: Prodigy. The animators obviously are working and the writers are just finishing season two of both shows. There is a two-plus year lead time from concept to actually airing it. Though shows get to keep going forward.
When Lower Decks was announced, CBS revealed it had a two-season order (which is common for the animation industry given the long lead times to create the animation). This also confirms that Prodigy also has a two-season order, even before it’s 2021 premiere.
Learning lessons from Short Treks, hoping for more “experiments”
As the interview was focused on Emmy nominations, including his own for Outstanding Short Form Series, much of the discussion was about Star Trek: Short Treks, which Kurtzman described as “an amazing experiment.” He said Short Treks has allowed the team to try out “different tones and different styles,” but he added that he strives to keep it all within the core of the franchise:
To be able to do those kind of things, maintain this vision of Star Trek which is this hard-won optimism that is so essential to Gene Roddenberry’s vision of the future. What people love about Star Trek is what he established and we can never go away from that. But I think that the fun us… [we] get to experiment with how far you can go and still feel like Star Trek.
He specifically talked about how the Short Treks allowed the team to experiment with humor and animation, both of which are at the core of the new series Star Trek: Lower Decks. Kurtzman said the long process for animation, which takes longer than live-action, has been a learning curve for him, which he has applied to Lower Decks and the upcoming Nickelodeon series Star Trek: Prodigy.
He also outlined how Short Treks has helped them set boundaries for comedy in Star Trek, pointing to the episode “The Trouble with Edward”:
It was definitely very risky because it was the first real broad comedy ever done in the world of Star Trek… We started talking about how far you can push it in terms of Star Trek and comedy and what point does it break and at what point does it offend people. One of the things we certainly applied to that that we also applied to Lower Decks is you can never punch down on Star Trek. You can never make fun of it. Star Trek actually has a long legacy of sort of winking at itself, but if you feel like you are making fun of it, you take the joy out of it.
When asked if there are plans for more Short Treks, Kurtzman said, “Thanks to the Emmy nomination I’m really hoping so.” He also outlined some ideas he would like to experiment with in the future:
There are so many different forms that these shorts can take. I would love to do a musical for example… I would love to do one in black and white and figure out what that means. I could probably think of fifty different ways we could tell stories and fifty different crevices of the Star Trek universe to explore that may not be the right kinds of crevices for the larger shows, but we always think of the Short Treks as these are the scenes that are just as important as what’s going on in the main shows, but you wouldn’t actually have time for. These are the moments you can drill down on. So, I would love to [do more Short Treks].
Some fans may take note at the mention of doing something in black and white. In May Star Trek: Voyager stars Robert Duncan McNeill and Garrett Wang talked about how they were seriously interested in reviving the Captain Proton stories from Voyager. And in her recent TrekMovie interview, Voyager star Kate Mulgrew said she would love to play Queen Arachnia again.
Watch the full Kurtzman Gold Derby interview
Keep up with the Star Trek Universe on TV at TrekMovie.com.
Well might as well have the whole season already written, take as much time on it as they need before they can go into production.
But I really don’t know… think it’ll help?
I’m really hopeful that it will help the coherence and plotting in each of the shows.
The norm for the Secret Hideout live-action series has to start shooting while the back half of the season remains to be written. It may have worked in the days of purely episodic series, but it hasn’t served Discovery or Picard well.
perhaps you could elaborate on what part of TG47’s comment is ‘wrong’? Is it the production aspect you disagree with or his assessment of the shows plotting? Nothing wrong with having a contrary opinion Tom but curt responses like that don’t really leave much room for furthering the discussion.
argh! so my contrary opinion is not warranted? lol… it’s funny how some of you guys look at this stuff… i’ve written this before and i’m happy to elaborate… i think picard’s pacing and the entire season was amazing… the first 3 eps were like a great pilot/movie… on a first watch many felt like it was slow but as a 10 part story it works perfectly and works better as you rewatch it…i remember people being like when is he getting to space we want space… space… but as you know there’s not a lack of space and other planets and adventure… this was a buildup to an amazing middle… absolute candor and stardust city rag were two extraordinary episodes… i feel like stardust city rag was the ep that tied it all together… character reveals… great humor… and 7 was just great and the scene between her and picard was perfect as was the episode even though some got their pearls in a bind with the graphic opening… the impossible box and nepenthe led us into the finale… nepenthe is not just great because of riker and troi but it’s just this great rest period before we end it all… my only issue with the first season… well 2 would be 1) the brother sister roumlans were a bit repetitive and cartoony… her particularly… but whatever… trek has that all the time… and 2) the overall series arc was ended quickly… i’ve written this before it’s actually a trek tradition to have a great buildup and end it in 5 minutes… many eps of tng and especially the two parters accomplished that… but the real ending with data i thought was spectacular and emotional and connected with everything that the series was about… the choice to put picard in an andoid body is just one thing fans can debate but overall the series pacing was outstanding. and i gotta say on my 4th rewatch of it it holds up really well and even better seeing it again.
i have a good eye for trek and what’s good and what’s not… but it’s all opinion… tos ups and downs but a great world builder… tng loved but looking back many corny things… ds9 my fave and holds up amazingly well… voyager didn’t totally work as the writers lost their hope of an edgier ds9 kind of thread… enterprise was the tired end of a 16 year production stream… discovery starts off good but clearly on shaky legs and ends well and season 2 is great… and i really enjoyed lower decks though a friend of mine who works with franchises doesn’t like that it doesn’t feel like trek… not i the way all you guys say it but that the genre and style are too jarring but that’s one of the things i like about it. he otherwise thought it was good.
hope all that helps
It does Tom – good post. Like I said absolutely no issues with people having contrary opinions it just wasn’t clear what those actually were from a one word response. I like Picard and I imagine I’ll like it more on rewatch. That’s usually the case for me with the newer series but I’m slowly plodding through a chronological rewatch of Trek and I’ve still got a few seasons of DS9 and Voyager before I get back to Picard. I have to say though on my first viewing of Picard I do agree with TG47 at least in terms of the pacing of the show. It’s not that it’s slow, I’m fine with that but it felt like they left themselves with too much story still to tell in the last couple of episodes and to me at least the conclusion felt rushed. We’ve seen the same sort of thing happen with Discovery and this is further supported by the fact CBS commissioned additional episodes that hadn’t originally been budgeted for to give them more time to tell each seasons story. Maybe the writers assumed they could do the same with Picard but it was vetoed. I don’t know but I still hope that with the additional time to plan season 2 that they can better plot the show so that it’s more evenly paced.
im sure it will be planned even better as any show would be… these shows are always running to the finish line not just trek… when you do your rewatch i’m confident you will see the pacing actually is perfect… or better. i would have totally preferred another episode or longer finale to wrap things up… but honestly it’s so good on all levels acting, action, humor… and the characters that the issues i have are fairly minor… and my god if you go back and watch tng and even ds9 with the same scrutiny we put on the new shows we’d spend most of the time ripping them apart… tng in particular so much stupid even beyond picard becoming a child or beverly screwing a lamp… fanboys would rip the show to shreds today… and issues with canon? there’s tons but we tend to ignore them or laugh at them unless we need to complain
I do not think it fair to compare how the Berman era Treks to the Secret Hideout ones. The SH Treks should be held to a much higher standard for darn good reason. There are fewer episodes. There are no real solid deadlines to meet. The budgets are considerably higher. They can afford to take the time to fully map out each season proper. Not to mention that we are directly paying for the privilege just to watch these shows on a pay service. The other shows were either viewed on free over the air television or on a station via a cable service that was already being paid for whether Trek was on or not.
It is only completely proper that the SH shows must withstand greater scrutiny than the previous Trek incarnations and I for one do not begrudge anyone for doing so.
and the result is they are great… as a life long trekkie to see this resurgence is amazing… and not sure what the issue is… ds9 had plenty of budget… so did tng… etc… for the day they were very expensive shows… would ds9 or tng have been better with 13 episode seasons? definitely… would voyager have been better if berman had allowed a serialized story like ds9 definitely… also story telling was different in the tng era… ds9 feels more modern when they get into the last 4 seasons. end result though is the 60s trek was great… 80s/90s were great… and now this is great… golden age of trek right now and glad most people and enjoying it and that it’s doing well. discovery headed to season 4. picard was a huge success… and lower decks omg so much fun. i think SNW will be a blast taking on a mix of traditional trek standalone storytelling but with a modern sensibility that these shows have. once the world starts again i would love to see short treks take on some new types of storytelling… kurtzman talked about that… i would also love to see some updates on older characters with the short treks… for anyone who can’t handle it they always have the orville or reruns on pluto. but living in the past is something trek fans do too much of IMO. ideally it’s a little of both. love the old embrace the new. it’s all coming from writers who are fans and have been inspired by trek and it’s pretty awesome.
Seems like that’s our best hope at this point. Although it would seem like an even tougher sell if we were still saying that after S3.
Couldn’t they at least have a very detailed outline broken into ten parts. I mean I hate to suggest that they don’t when I wouldn’t know they’re workflow, but how do you figure…
I really hope we’ll be getting through this all together. Sounds great that all shows still seem to be on course and if this is legit, those naysayers on YouTube who claim all Trek has been cancelled are wrong once again. Personally I could do without Section 31 but the rest needs to stay :-)
However, I’m having trouble thinking of “The Trouble with Edward” as comedy. It had its funny situations but it never felt like s full-blown comedy, not even for a second. Maybe it’s because I am a person whose mental set-up is VERY close to Edward himself. I may be even a lot more extreme at times. None of that supposed “humor” felt funny because that’s how I feel every day, that’s how I interact with others. It doesn’t end in desasters like that, but it feels very close to what I’m going trough a lot…
I tend to think everybody relates to that and most don’t admit it. Even if that does seem like arrogant obliviousness at my own supposed slowness. I did find the short quite funny though. Only part I didn’t care for was the commercial at the end, which just grossed me out.
The Youtube naysayers though will just adapt their narrative accordingly and keep spreading lies intended to turn disillusioned cynics away. I myself have become a disillusioned cynic of Kurtzman Trek, and would “probably” agree with most of their criticisms if they would just speak honestly about said criticisms instead of out-right refusing to cut the crap for even a whole minute.
And yeah, S31 remains the project I understand the least. They’ve taken on enough other series I would just assume one of them had certainly replaced it by now — apparently not.
“Only part I didn’t care for was the commercial at the end, which just grossed me out.”
Interesting. That was the only part I found to be even slightly amusing.
“And yeah, S31 remains the project I understand the least.”
At least THIS idea of a Section 31 series is completely beyond me. 23rd century, main character being a tyrant from the mirror universe now working for Section 31…
The entire Georgiou character arc seems like the recycled plot from STID, a plot that didn’t work the first time round either. Think of it…
Hitler or Stalin working for MI6 as field agents because of their knowledge of evil??? Georgiou and Khan shouldn’t be anywhere near Section 31. It just doesn’t work for me, no matter how insistent they are with this stonecold-crazy idea!
Yeah I thought it was stupid when Khan worked for Section 31, I think it was just as stupid when Space Hitler joined them. At least with Khan he was being blackmailed into the job and it was for a specific reason (but yes still a stupid one. A 300 year old man building space ships??? C’mon!!). With Space Hitler it just seems they want a reason to keep Yeoh around and give her something substantial to do. And now they are giving her her own show. It still makes no real sense but maybe season 3 will do a better job telling us why we should care about her at all because I did feel anything close to that in season 2.
I strongly suspect that the original idea was for mirror-Lorca to survive and join S31 (possibly after they’d rescue “our” Lorca in the Mirror universe). It would make sense: he did have the right nature for that job, and the right abilities; he was already cooperating with them during his Discovery assignment, and he proved himself to them.
But then some airheaded writer or co-producer decided to take their best-developed character and turn him into one-bit villain in order to make a minor political point (which nobody will understand ten years from now) – and we got the cringy mirror-Georgiou recruited as a last-moment replacement. That’s why her recruitment doesn’t make sense: she wasn’t a part of the original plan.
Ugh. Tiger, you just reminded me why I will never be rewatching either DSC S1 & S2 OR STID. Such horrible ‘writing.’ Why not just go out and ask someone on the street to write this stuff? Or is that what they did?
The problem is that the Edward short felt more cruel to me than comedic. Don’t get me wrong, in the right context being cruel can be very funny! (“Oh, and Jenkins, apparently your mother died this morning. Chaplain.”
But Edward just didn’t work on any level. But that is why they do experiments. The first ones are almost always failures.
Agreed, to me it also seemed needlessly cruel even with the comedic undertones. I think at the end if Edward was somehow redeemed it could have worked better and they could have give that message in a comedic sense as well. That he learned from his mistakes.
Short Treks is the best idea anyone in the history of Trek production ever had, although it could probably only have happened in a world increasingly dominated by streaming services over network or cable TV. You have all these concurrent series going with their sets and costumes and VFX elements all right there, crossing multiple eras, also creating the perfect creative and logistical conditions for doing these little short story ideas. They’re fun and different and as Kurtzman says, so many different ways you can go or things you can look at, that just wouldn’t fit into a full scale production. They can be little vignettes from the earlier careers of main characters (like Q&A) or just do things within the universe that are completely unrelated to anyone we’ve ever met before (like Calypso or Trouble With Edward). Hopefully they keep doing little mini-seasons of these. Can’t wait for more of them.
“the best idea anyone in the history of Trek production ever had”
While I do think Short Treks is an innovative idea let’s not get carried away. For most fans they are not a ‘must see’ and clearly there just to be a supplement to the shows. They are great but they are also still just 10-15 minute stories. Its not enough to hold most fans and why I suspect they may not be coming back because not enough people are paying to watch them.
It isn’t even the best idea they’ve had in the Discovery era (an era marked almost exclusively by bad ideas).
I do hope they keep making them, though; they’re hit or miss, but the good ones have been quite good.
Considering some “news sources” are spreading that the Section 31 series is abandoned*, it’s worth pointing to two of those statements above together:
Trekmovie: “In 2019 Kurtzman had said they planned to go into production on it after the third season of Discovery wrapped, which happened this past February.”
Kurtzman: “The thing that I think we are very lucky about is we wrapped Discovery ten days before the lockdown happened.”
So for those who are claiming we haven’t heard much about the Section 31 series because it’s ‘so bad they decided not to film it,’ please remember that the filming was scheduled to start almost precisely when all productions stopped, and that schedule was made public well in advance. (Which doesn’t rule out quality concerns… But it does mean you can’t reasonably point to production delays as evidence of this.)
* Said sources tend to claim that all of the current and in-development Trek series are “cancelled” in what seems to be wishful thinking on their part, but I feel like I’ve seen special focus on the “cancellation” of the S31 series recently. FWIW, I have never been less excited about an official Star Trek series announcement than I have been about a Section 31 series where the lead is from the Mirror Universe, but I am at least curious what they’re planning to do with that concept.
These same sources are the ones who have claimed Kurtzman has been fired multiple times, no?
I don’t know anything about fake rumours of cancellation, all I know is that the S31 concept – especially with Space Hitler is stupid. I would rather a mirror universe continuation from the DS9 storyline. Whats mirror universe O’Brien up to?
I read about this today too. The same article mentioned Giant Freakin Robot’s reporting that Picard lost half its viewership over the course of the season, cuz ppl hated it (or other reasons we can’t know for sure). The article also mentioned the premise of the canceled Section 31 show, and it was somehow hotter garbage than Disco and Picard: Georgiou goes back in time to stop Khan from doing terrible things in the 90s. Really?
If it’s true, I want to scream at the producers for even entertaining such a ridiculous idea. Cuz Section 31 is now a team of time bandits looking to sabotage history? You gotta be effing kidding me. These writers don’t understand Star Trek, and I thought it was evident from the series we’ve already gotten, but let’s hope we never have to find out how bad it could get with Section 31.
Even the people who pretend to love Discovery aren’t clamoring for Section 31. Ha, just kidding, everything is awesome.
The good thing that came out of the delays it seems was the moving up of Lower Decks and the dripping back of STD. I personally do not mind the Discovery delay but was really jonsing for LDKS.
I did like what he said about the short Treks. They are a good place for experimenting. The Edward experiment was an epic fail but I don’t think they should take that to mean they shouldn’t try a comedic short again. Just do better. As a fan, those feel like the perfect places to make your experiments. Do a musical in a short. Do a Chaotica short. Try different things. Most probably won’t work but hey… They are experiments!
And they really need to get off this idea that not making fun of Trek = not poking fun at it. I’ve said time and time again they can certainly poke fun at it without making fun. Again, Family Guy was successful at that with their Star Wars parodies. They POKED fun but didn’t MAKE fun. There is a huge different. That first episode of LDKS felt like they were afraid to even poke fun at something. As a result, if felt like they were trying so hard not to cross any lines for fans that they forgot to write funny jokes.
Most attempts at comedy are guilty of that these days, ML, imo. Sacrificing actual humor for fear of ‘offending’ someone.
True. Jerry Seinfeld stopped his college campus gigs because of that. It’s pretty bad.
This is *way* too much Star Trek to keep up with. I love Star Trek, but the Trek universe is starting to lose its cohesion. They needed to pick one series to focus on, not five or six or whatever, possibly with PICARD as a derivative work. And PICARD worked because of Stewart and Chabon. Half of that team is departing.
For a black-and-white episode, they need to do what STAR TREK CONTINUES did, which was to incorporate black-and-white filming into the plot in a way that felt organic, not cheesy. (The reward for that was to effectively end all fan productions.) I’m not holding my breath to see what the “lawless ensigns, lawless teens” gang comes up with.
Really, Lower Decks and Prodigy are sideshows to me, I won’t actively follow their development as I would the live action shows. I’ll watch them, but they’re not appointment TV. Short Treks is in a middle ground as it basically filled a void between shows. What I really keep up with are Discovery, Picard and Strange New Worlds. Section 31 doesn’t appeal to me at all, but I’ll probably still follow it. So really, there are only three Treks that I feel obligated as a fan to follow. That’s not too many, as the CSI, NCIS and Chicago franchises have shown.
The short Treks are not enough to keep me subscribed to CBSAA when there is no Trek show on. I’ll wait and catch them when I re-up for whatever show is next.
I don’t see us even approaching the “way too much” realm yet. When DS9 aired, it overlapped with both TNG and VOY. And those series had roughly 23 1-hour episodes per season (yes, I know they aren’t full hours when you cut commercials, but I’m spitballing here). That’s 46 hours of new Trek per year. With these new series having 10-13 episodes per season, we would need to see 4 new seasons every year to get to where we were in the 90s. We won’t have that in 2020, we almost certainly won’t in 2021. Perhaps in 2022, but that’s a long way off. And, FWIW, I would be very happy with 50 or more hours of new Trek in a year.
I said it myself a few weeks ago probably the plan is to air at least four Star Trek shows a year and basically a show for every quarter to keep Trek fans on AA all year.
And yes I never complained when we got 50 episodes a year when DS9 and VOY was on and I’m going to complain now. If they make more I will happily watch more. Just as long as its good which I admit is a bit iffy right now but plenty of time to improve.
I’m with you Mike2 and Tiger2.
How can it be saturation when there is less than 52 hours per year?
Bring it on.
As to Strange New Worlds, solid cast of very good actors, and we’re back on the E. But I have to say I’m far from thrilled about the idea of another prequel to TOS, and I have no faith in these showrunners as to writing compelling, effective sci-fi. Prove me wrong, CBS, because you haven’t yet. The way things are looking, I’m not signing up for CBS’ service again for a couple of years. If I sound discouraged, it’s simply because I am.
Unless Lower Decks seriously wows me this week or next, I’m dropping CBS All Access until DISCOVERY comes back.
My first viewing of Second Contact wasn’t too compelling for me. It just seemed too rushed. Upon the a second and third viewing? It’s growing on me. The creator said the eps are being written with multiple viewings in mind.
The show is hilarious.
I found the third viewing the most enjoyable yet too dennycranium.
I’ve really missed the richness of 90s Trek where each episode had layer upon layer waiting to be discovered on rewatch.
After the first episode people here will be moaning about how awful it is.
People here will wait until the first episode. People on Facebook and other so-called “fan” websites won’t bother to wait. There are some who already hate it, saying “Kurtzman is in charge, so it is going to be terrible.”
From my point of view, that argument goes more like, “Kurtzman & Co are running it and they do not have a good track record. So based on their past work it doesn’t bode well for their upcoming show.”
They had already posted negative reviews on Google and Rotten Tomatoes within 2 minutes of the board being open.
While we disagree with the concept of the prequel series, I do share your concerns with Secret Hideout producing SNW. I have very little faith. How I very much want to be proved wrong at some point….
I’m very excited about SNW now, but yes I don’t think I would be as excited if it was the ONLY show around, ie, a prequel. But now with Picard, Lower Decks and Discovery all going forward (especially Discovery ;)) then I think its great actually. It balances things a bit more and as you said it probably will be the only show we have that will take place on an Enterprise and the original at that is pretty appealing. Even though we’ve had multiple Enterprises through the decades (and the D is still actually my favorite) it is a bit crazy we have not had the original since TOS. Obviously makes sense why but it’s going to be a big appeal for TOS fans, at least the ones who accepts the show since I know many still won’t.
But I know you don’t like most of the shows on now so I agree they still have an uphill battle to convince people but thankfully they have all the time in the world since Star Trek is probably not leaving anytime soon either.
Still grudgingly hanging in there, Tiger! I’m not signed up for AA, and don’t feel like I’m missing anything in the least (LDS, TZ), but I will be interested to see what the reviews and reactions re: DSC S3 are like here on TM. I’m treating everything from Kurtzman & Co. as ‘buyer beware’ until further notice. Luckily, as you said in another comment, there’s so much else out there to watch these days, I can wait indefinitely.
DIS of season 3 will probably be the make or break season for a lot of fans still on the fence about it or outright hate it. As you know I’m very excited about it, but I’m prepared to hate it too!
I have to say I’m REALLY enjoying LDS. Yes its only two episodes in (I was also REALLY enjoying Picard and DIS season 2 two episodes in as well) but its just the vibe itself I’m enjoying. You may hate it, it’s certainly not the most popular show here, but its fun. at least AND it’s going forward.
But if you do end up watching DIS season 3 then I would give LDS at least a few episodes too. But you know how I feel if something isn’t for them, then thats fine. There is tons of pre-Kurtzman Trek to always watch.
Watched the LDS pilot yesterday when they posted it on YouTube. Looks to be a fun, lighthearted show with some nice shout-outs to be past. Not terribly funny, but good-natured. I imagine I’ll watch them all at some point in the future – interesting that what seems to be the most likeable offering from Kurtzman & Co. is a cartoon.
So far, and it is only two episodes, LDKS is easily the best Trek Secret Hideout has produced. And it’s not even close. The 2nd episode was better. I would give it a 6.7 out of 10.
After I try out LDS, I’m canceling. They’ve taken too much of my good money. After Picard, I just can’t do it anymore. Fool me once…
It would be kind of great if somehow Michael in her crazy time traveling jumpsuit switched the dead body of captain G and the Empress. IDK just saying.
It was supposed to have been a one-way trip and then it would burn out the time crystal, or something like that. So unless she finds another time crystal…
Just go to the same place she got the first one. And then take a bunch. Problem solved.
Or better yet, on her first trip she goes to the time crystal planet and grabs a whole bunch. Now she can take a whole bunch of trips!
This is why when you do time travel stories it’s a very bad idea to give the character control of time.
To be fair, the Klingons weren’t exactly selling them. And they only gave the one away to literally save the galaxy (when I write ‘literally save the galaxy’ I don’t but to laugh or shake my head sometimes) so it may not be that easy.
But I don’t disagree with you, the problem is they have made time travel in Star Trek waaaaaay too easy. As I said before if you can ‘accidentally’ do it over and over again, then yeah it’s easy lol. I don’t see anyone accidentally making a cures to diseases or creating teleportation for some reason.
And then of course we ignore the most obvious thing and we seen the Discovery travel through time (‘accidentally’ though ;)) using the mycelium network in first season and jumped 9 months into the future. Once again this is the problem. If you found a way to jump into the future using it then I’m not sure why you can’t figure out a way to jump in the past? People may have to study it and it may take awhile (in Star Trek speak, that means a few weeks) but if they really want to get back home and without the time crystal that is already one possibility now that we know the spore drive is staying.
I guess what I am hoping for is simply that if they really are making Section 31, we get the good Georgio back where she’s “dead” so she has to work from the shadows.
I just don’t know how feasible that would be. Didn’t the Klingons EAT Georgiou? But I guess since we’re talking Star Trek and time travel there are other ways to get her back without breaking canon. I would be all for it since I hate Space Hitler to my core.
it was a great interview… kurtzman is one of us. he really loves trek. check it out. sounds like with the covid issues they are far ahead with the scripts and stories… good stuff.
Kurtzman has said he was more a Star Wars guy growing up and that in writing the Trek movies, Bob Orci was the Trekkie, not him.
As long as Kurtzman is steering this starship it’ll continue to be unwatchable and completely undeserving of the name ‘Star Trek’.
Say what you really feel.
And yet, people are watching it. Go figure.
Poorly written shows = unsustainable viewing figures.
I know this is ridiculously paranoid, but I’d be curious to know what anti-bot security exists on Trekmovie.com. There sure seems to be a more easily pleased crowd here than existed a decade ago.
This is a very tiny community Sully. I come here almost daily now since the new shows started and I can easily recognize 90% of the handles for any given article. And trust me, people are still pretty divided here lol. If you don’t believe that look up ANY episode review of Discovery for starters. Picard actually fares a lot better, especially the first half, but by the end many people weren’t pleased, I’ll put it that way. ;)
But as for ‘viewing figures’ it really means nothing at the end of the day because we’re not talking about a network or a cable channel. We’re talking a still relatively small upstart streaming site that I doubt most people even keep all year if they have it now. What seems to get missed here, as it seems like you are doing, no matter how many people are watching Picard, Discovery, etc it’s A. probably still higher than anything else on that site and B. is the only property that is bringing ANY interest to it as well.
Twilight Zone released season 2 a month ago. How many people do you see talking about it? Where are the sites and youtube channels making videos for it? I’m sure people are watching it, but its not creating any dialogue nor is anyone telling others they should watch it. And that’s probably AA’s second famous property after Star Trek. Even this site stopped reviewing it after the first episode of first season.
Star Trek is certainly not in the same boat. Every episode of any of the shows are thrown up all over the internet to be scrutinized. It speaks to the power of fandom. And so the fact is while a particular show may get cancelled at some point, the brand itself going to be a staple on AA just like Star Wars and Marvel will be on Disney+ because its the biggest brand there.
All these naysayers on Youtube go on and on about how every episode sucks and the show is going to get cancelled any day ironically proves why these shows stays because they are still paying to watch them every week AND oddly enough they keep people interested even if they are doing nothing but hate watching. CBS doesn’t care how you watch, just that you do…and paying for it in the process.
The irony is if these people really got their wish and these shows went away tomorrow then they would have nothing to talk about and have to find other ways to keep their viewers or they lose money…but let’s not say that out loud. ;)
Anyway the shows aren’t going anywhere, at least for awhile.
Hey… Thanks for reminding me TZ season two is on. Now that I have re-upped my CBSAA subscription I can continue to ignore it.
That first season was just pure crap.
I still only watched one episode (the airplane one) from first season. I DO want to give the others a chance but when you have SO many viewing options these days, its really hard to get invested in the stuff people are just ‘meh’ on. And it doesn’t sound like season 2 is faring much better although I only saw reviews for the first 2 or 3 episodes.
To be completely honest, I MIGHT look at an episode or two to see if they learned anything after their disastrous first season. Only if I have an hour with literally NOTHING else to do. If the 23 weeks of Trek end before I have that chance then so be it. I’ll just skip it.
I hope CBS takes a hard look at the Trek leadership structure in light of these viewership numbers, cuz it’s truly embarrassing
And yet, people will watch products of long-established, world-famous franchises regardless of quality. Go figure.
I’m always impressed by Kurtzman, he knows how to bring the right people to the franchise which is one of the most important jobs of an executive. I don’t expect him to be a Trekkie, but he knows people who are. Berman certainly wasn’t a Trekkie, and he is responsible for rescuing TNG and bringing us all of my other favorite Star Trek shows.
I am sad to see Short Treks has likely been dropped, typically they film those while they are filming in Toronto and they didn’t film any during Season 3. Perhaps they would have normally filmed them when the season wrapped, but they weren’t greenlit regardless. I think they may have dropped them now that they have more shows in production.
It does look like Section 31 has been dropped, possibly in favor of Strange New Worlds. They’ve stopped talking about it entirely despite the fact we were suppose to be in production right about now. The Pandemic would have delayed it surely, but they would be prepping for the new show. Instead I believe they are prepping for SNW. Which is fine, it’s not a big loss. I don’t think the idea was popular and it’s possible to oversaturate Star Trek. I would like to see Picard wrap up with Season 3 and Discovery with Season 4 or 5, and then they can move onto the next shows. The streaming service model is generally only viable for about 3-5 seasons per show.
Sorry, but in what parallel world do you live where they’ve stopped talking about Section 31 entirely? Kurtzman talked about it right in this very article. It has been a part of several recent press releases from CBS.
It doesn’t look like the show will start shooting anytime soon (as was apparently planned about a year ago) but they certainly haven’t stopped talking about the show.
Yes but you said it was ‘dropped’ as in cancelled. Clearly that’s not the case, just means it’s not being made as soon as they originally said. That’s a BIG difference there. Kurtzman literally said the opposite and its still being worked on. Is that not being prepped?
Interesting how we’re reading this differently Michael K.
The way I parse Kurtzman’s message, CBSAA hadn’t greenlighted further seasons of Short Treks, but the discussion is happening now that they have a series Emmy nomination nod.
Frankly, shorts may be something that CBSAA can do to differentiate it from other streamers. Leading with shorts from their major franchise makes a lot of strategic sense.
Yes, they’ve had difficulty persuading Netflix and Amazon Prime of their value because they aren’t targeting shorts, but that’s all the more reason to target the niche, especially when the biggest player in that space is Quibi, a standalone short streamer.
I think credit needs to be given where its due and that is Short Treks. This is an excellent idea that I believe Kurtzman did very good with. At first I thought I was not gonna enjoy them because of their short running times, but I have become a fan of them and if they can experiment more and try different genres and styles with the short treks, it would be excellent.
The best thing he can do to improbe Star Trek is to resign.
Yep, 2021 is going to be pretty dry for new Trek content. I get that coronavirus meant that some of that was outside their ability to control. Patience….
Strange New Worlds in 2021 is good to hear.
It will SHOOT in 2021, its not confirmed when it will actually air. Even TM is predicting it will probably be 2022 as I been predicting. These shows already take forever when things are running smoothly. With the Coronavirus I suspect both pre and post production will even take longer now. Discovery was suppose to come out months ago and was already shot. I think sadly we won’t see any live shows in 2021 with maybe the exception of Picard since they will still try and shoot it sometime this year from what it sounds like.
Can’t wait for Section 31
I can’t wait for the new Nacho Crunch Double Stacked Taco from Taco Bell. Follow the link for amazing offers.
2021 will be The Year of the Asterisk. We have plans for next year.*
*vaccine, if things get better, etc.
It was great to get so much info! I still don’t understand why they don’t just give updates like this during the Comic Con event? That’s what most of us expect with those events, actual NEWS. And he didn’t say anything here that he couldn’t say a few weeks ago when all he is doing is just updating on what’s happening. But glad we finally got something.
It all sounded pretty positive given the world we are living in today. None of it was a surprise, kind of what I expected to hear. The only thing I’m a little surprised at is that Short Treks may not be a guarantee in the future. I thought this would be a no brainer since they are cheap to make (compared to the actual shows) and a way to keep viewers watching. But then again I guess that was the point, to keep people on AA between shows but with so many shows coming its less necessary. And my guess is viewership probably didn’t go up all that high since most probably just waited for a new season of a show to watch them. At least according to most they don’t didn’t bother to re-sub when they were on, so that’s probably the issue.
Still I think they are great like many and its just nice they can experiment and gives us stories we can’t get on the shows. I still want things like an Enterprise or a DS9 Short Trek or like he said do things like black or white or more animation. Hopefully they will continue.
Its great they may find a way for Picard to start filming soon. Jeri Ryan in an interview said they could start in September and maybe they still will, just with a ton of restrictions and measurements. Also nice to hear SNW will shoot next year and they are already working on scripts for season 4 of Discovery. And yes Section 31 sounds like it’s still hanging on, with the moans of Trekkies everywhere lol. I’m not excited for it either but I still want to see what they do with it. And maybe it will stay in the 32nd century which I hope happens.
For me, it all sounds pretty exciting, just a longer wait. But we have a few shows now to enjoy and I’m really looking forward to both of them. LDS may recapture the 24th century we haven’t seen since Voyager went off the air and Discovery is finally doing its own thing in a brand new era and century it probably should have been in on day one. Sounds like fun!
I’m psyched, and glad to hear that work has been steady, if slowed, on all the projects.
It sounds as though Discovery Season 4 might still move forward before or simultaneously with Strange New Worlds. One really hopes that SMG gets the time this year to enjoy and attach to her newborn.
In terms of the choice of venue for sharing the information, it seems like the ViacomCBS comms folks are putting priority on reaching Emmy voters right now. Virtual Comic-Con wasn’t the kind of media event that it usually is, so this makes a certain kind of strategic comms sense…but its not great for the fanbase.
It’s also telling what a HUGE difference there is between the TV division and the film division. I mean things are really happening in the TV world even if some shows like Section 31 has most likely taken a back seat. But remember SNW was just announced a few months ago and I doubt until season 2 of Discovery aired it was ever in the cards to be its own show. So much is happening with all these shows and the animated shows are already working on their second seasons even though LDS just launched and Prodigy won’t be out until next year.
But meeeeeeeaaaaaanwhile, back at Paramount the only news we gotten this year about a movie is that they now put their latest project with the Hawley script on hold. And they seem so desperate for any good PR they are teasing they might still do the Hemsworth movie or the Tarantino script; two stories that are already more than two years old and were already passed up for the Hawley movie in the first place. If they were actually excited about either one I doubt they would’ve hired a new director/writer to come up with their own idea and just made one of those first. But I guess those movies may involve the Kelvin crew and Pine is not exactly begging to come back, so…
Anyway if it wasn’t for All Access and their desperate need to get people actually paying for it, I doubt we would have all the Trek we do now and would be pulling our hair out now just waiting for any news of a new Star Trek film. Instead we have a new episode tomorrow! Just funny one side seems to be going all in with their Trek projects while the other is being cautious as a fox.
Given the amount of unsettled anxiety amongst fans about a second season featuring a technically dead Picard 2.0 android character, I’m wondering if a visit from Q could fix all that? Maybe Q could do what he tried to do for Data and make Picard fully human again? Remember, in Star Trek, you are only dead (or transformed into an android) until you are alive again!
“To be able to do those kind of things, maintain this vision of Star Trek which is this hard-won optimism that is so essential to Gene Roddenberry’s vision of the future. What people love about Star Trek is what he established and we can never go away from that. But I think that the fun us… [we] get to experiment with how far you can go and still feel like Star Trek.”
These remarks feel weird to say the least. Of course Star Trek needs to change in order to stay in touch with contemporary issues and tastes and in order to attract modern-day audiences of the next generation. While both DSC and PIC still address important issues and discuss some morals and lessons against the backdrop of unfavorable developments such as war and terror and the change of political climate, I still don’t see the point in changing essential key elements of GR’s original vision.
One of those elements is the absence of drinking, smoking and drugs. On the old shows, those vices are not just left out for censorship purposes but those habits are openly adressed as strange, unbelievable remnants of a distant past. Yet you have most main characters on PIC drinking, smoking and doing drugs. Why? How does that keep up Gene’s vision? How would an android attack on Mars get people started on century-old vices again, that only 30 years prior had been totally eradicated?
Another aspect is money… Rafi lives in a miserable trailer, Rios is a mercenary expecting to get paid for his services while it had been openly stated time and again, that there was no need for money in that future. Replicators and unlimited energy supplies should be able to print you a neat little home, no matter how your Starfleet career has turned out.
Next aspect: bad language! While some may believe the absence of swearing on the old shows had been a matter of network rules and censorship, it had been clearly stated on previous Trek incarnations that this sort of language has been abandoned by humanity. For Spock or Geordie in TVH and FC, this sort of language is completely inaccessible. It makes no f…ing sense to reintroduce that sort of behavior only a few decades later just because they can due to the shift to online streaming.
And those are only three of many, many aspects that come of not only strange but completely out-of-place and time in this universe and are a clear and present break with GR’s original vision. And those three points aren’t even the worst of it: the insertion of guts and gore for entertainment purposes also comes to mind, with Icheb probably being the worst instance but by far not the only one.
Is all of that really necessary to get the 12-16-year-olds hooked these days?
Thoughtful post, Garth. Very good points. What you just pointed out is the showrunners trying to make Trek ‘cool.’ And from someone who admittedly likes a drink or two, I could do without it, or sparingly, in my Star Trek. Raffi’s substance abuse issues seemed so out of place because they were – they don’t belong in the very universe the show allegedly takes place. These writers just don’t understand things like that.
Yeah, well, Scotty had more than just a drink or two in the 23rd century. But 100 years later, it had been even more out of place. To show one messed up cahracter is one thing but by the end of the season, everyone was drinking, even Seven, Picard, Riker, Troi… does make no sense at all.
I truly appreciate the opportunity to see what happens in TNG’s future except that this doesn’t really feel like TNG’s future. Well, DS9 and the movies already made the era a lot darker and more ambiguous and the writers might have felt that this was the natural course it would take. But I think they overdosed entirely.
It becomes obvious the writers/producers still believe the absence of drugs, smoking, swearing etc. was only due to a limitation set up by network rules back in the day. They simply don’t get that wasn’t the only reason. Trek openly rejected those issues as part of its optimistic vision.
It’s ironic: the only limitation that was actually due to network rules mainly is nudity. And that is the only red line they haven’t crossed entirely yet – if you don’t count rubber body suits and animated characters. Personally I’m glad they haven’t but that’s the one thing GR would have actually appreciated :-)
Twenty three weeks of Star Trek sounds more like a threat at this point.
It could only be a threat if they were forcing you to watch against your will. Last time I checked they weren’t.
The only good part of Section 31 would be if they retconned it out of existence from the other shows. So anti-Federation.
This is awesome.
Now the same DSC haters who told us the show would not be renewed after season 1, who then said the show was losing money after season 2, and who were recently suggesting season 3 would their last season since now other better Trek shows were moving forward…..SO YOU….
AND YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE…..
You can start working on your tired, lame, sour grapes, excuses so you will have some of your “great wisdom” to share will all of us after season 4 as to why there won’t be a season 5.
Epic Fail, DSC haters. DSC is going to get the full Trek 7 seasons at least, whether you like it or not.
Goodluck with STD, STP, STLD. I hope SNW flips the switch for me. As far as S31 Dont bother. A story about a secret organization that is identified to all by wearing black badges, just isnt a well thought out premise. IMO