Alex Kurtzman Talks Star Trek Philosophy And How It Can Be A Road Map To A Better Future

Executive producer Alex Kurtzman has been given the task of shaping the new Star Trek Universe for Paramount, with the launch of his fifth series (six if you count Short Treks) just last week. And he is set to continue building Star Trek for years to come. So it’s always good to hear his thoughts on Star Trek, which is what happened as he was a guest on this week’s episode of Tig Notaro’s podcast Don’t Ask Tig. Notaro is an old friend of Kurtzman, which is how she ended up getting a character built just for her with engineer Jett Reno in Star Trek: Discovery. On the podcast she talked to Kurtzman about his involvement with Trek and how it fits into his vision of the future, and how it is different than that other big Star franchise.

The “miracle” of Star Trek

When asked about how he became involved with Star Trek, Kurtzman talked about how his appreciation for the franchise has grown since he worked on the 2009 Star Trek movie:

So I did two of the movies and now here we are five television shows later. And I was definitely a fan of it. But I would never have been able to define myself as a Trekker or a Trekkie, or however somebody wants to self-identify. It wasn’t until I got into making the first movie and then did this incredibly deep dive into the world of Star Trek, that I fell in love with it. And each iteration of Trek has given me some new insight or gift into the kind of just the miracle that the whole universe of Star Trek is. And it’s been a really incredible experience. But I’m also fortunate to be surrounded by a lot of people who have really identified as Trekkers or Trekkies since they were little kids. There’s just an army of many people working–not just the writers or the directors, but production designers and costume designers and everybody who’s working on it can legitimately say that they’re a fan.

Alex Kurtzman with J.J. Abrams on set of Star Trek Into Darkness

Roadmap to the future

Later Notaro asked Kurtzman about his views on the future in general, and Kurtzman turned back to Star Trek:

I do fundamentally believe in people. If you look at Star Trek mythology, what Star Trek mythology tells you is that there came a point on planet Earth where everyone’s disagreements became so extreme that there was a nuclear war, and that was World War III. And then years later, society started rebuilding itself, but it had to rebuild itself out of the shadow of what had happened, knowing we can’t let that happen again. And part of me thinks that may end up turning out to be prophetically true. We are definitely at a crossroads of some kind as a species. And probably in our lifetime we’re going to see the beginning of some change that’s really, really seismic, but it’s really going to be our kids who are really going to be dealing with it.

Everybody has their ‘What am I doing to help save things or try and do things?’ And I feel like telling stories that inspire people to think a little differently about all of these issues, be it Man Who Fell To Earth or Star Trek or whatever, is what I can do. Star Trek gave people a roadmap to imagine a future where our better angels won. So people have to believe it’s possible… I think human beings are capable of amazing things. And ultimately, we’re gonna find our level at some point, or we’re gonna keep trying to.

Alex Kurtzman and Patrick Stewart announcing Star Trek: Picard at Star Trek: Las Vegas

Star Trek v Star Wars

Kurtzman also weighed in on how he sees the difference between Star Trek and Star Wars:

As a fan of both franchises, whatever my response is it’s not a knock on one or the other, because I don’t feel that way. I think that the difference for me with Trek is that Star Wars is very much about space battles, and pulling out a lightsaber over almost theological differences, as represented by The Force. Star Trek is about diplomacy, and war as an effort of last resort. And that’s really different in terms of the way that Star Wars and Star Trek stories are told. Star Trek is about science being the solution before the weapons are the solution. It’s about the ingenuity of a bridge crew be it Reno, in engineering, or any of the other characters figuring out a way to bring their little piece of the puzzle together so that the puzzle fits, usually in less time than anyone has to actually do it. And ultimately, I think it is always about–and this is all Roddenberry–just a fundamental optimism that the future is bright and can be bright.

Alex Kurtzman at Strange New Worlds NYC premiere

For more from Alex, see his recent TrekMovie interview talking about what’s next for the Star Trek Universe.

And visit dontasktig.com to listen to the full episode with Alex Kurtzman.

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Good man. I like him.

He’s certainly coming into his own now.

Even though I know Kurtzman is very divisive in the fanbase, I’ve always supported him and I certainly don’t like a lot of the things he’s done (STID, A lot of Discovery and Picard, etc). But he obviously understands what Star Trek is and gets it. And I will say every show has gotten better than the last which also proves these guys really do listen to the fanbase and hiring the right people to get it better on each new iteration.

I honestly don’t know if this era of Star Trek will ever surpass the Berman era for me. I completely love the Berman era even if I still don’t love everything he did either. All I know is I still watch those shows religiously today (watched an episode of Enterprise just this afternoon), so don’t know what to say. But I hope this new era surpasses that one eventually! I want all these shows to get better and better.

And frankly what makes shows like LDS, PRO and now SNW work for me is that they are feeling more like the Berman shows again. Not quite the same, but similar. Still doing their own thing, ie Lower Decks, but the stories, visual style and tone are feeling like those shows again. It looks like the Orc Klingons are gone and we ave the traditional ones back at least on the animated shows. The shows are feeling closer to old canon even with their own tweaks; certainly when you compare them to early Discovery. It’s nice SNW actually looks like a modern day version of TOS! This is all a lot of us wanted back in 2017. And yes they are all just feeling optimistic and upbeat again! That’s a Roddenberry quality I thought Discovery was missing back in first season. Now that show is retaining that more (even if its still pretty ‘meh’).

So it’s a positive for me even if the shows overall are still not as a great; but they are all still very young of course. I think he’s on the right track finally.

Personally, much as I have criticisms against the aforementioned things (STID, Discovery, Picard), I think this guy gets a lot of misdirected rage from the so-called “fans”. He is in-effect, the Berman of the 21st Century Star Trek shows. He holds the keys to the kingdom, but he is inot a showrunner of either of the shows.

Showrunners dictate much of what goes on in their respective shows, and coordinate with writers and directors to produce the content.

He actually was the showrunner of Discovery in seasons 2 and 3 IIRC, but a co-showrunner. And even if he’s not the showrunner he does approve everything that goes on the screen. I don’t pretend to know just how much authority everyone has running their individual shows, but when you’re at the top of the heap you will naturally get the blame as much as the credit even if you really had very little to do with it because they aren’t paying you all that money just to be a cheerleader. Your job is both to make sure stuff gets out on time and that it’s QUALITY stuff!

The best example being Picard. I still can’t believe how AWFUL Picard season 2 ended up being and yes Kurtzman definitely gets some blame with that. He may not have written a single line but if he nodded at every script he saw and approved how the season was being laid out, then yes he still deserves the blame just as much as the people who actually produced it because your job as manager is to make sure everyone under you is delivering a good product or service and IMO it was nowhere close.

Now all that being said, I agree the ‘rage’ gets a little too much. Sadly this is par for the course of any big franchise. And if you hated the Kelvin movies and then Discovery, he already stumbled out of the gate in a big way. But here is a ‘secret’ I will let you in on, it doesn’t matter who would be running Star Trek today, half the fanbase would still think that person is a hack no matter what. It’s become like picking the a new U.S. President, it just doesn’t matter who it is, half the country is just not going to like them because how divisive everything has gotten. And yes the same can definitely be said for Star Trek.

The irony is people who hates Kurtzman blames him for that division but yet not that long ago when Berman was tossed out, he was considered one of the ‘saviors’ of NuTrek along with Abams and Orci by a huge portion of the fanbase. It just proves how fickle fans are. Ask George Lucas and now Disney with Star Wars.

Yes, and DSC S2 lead to this great series, am I right?

I enjoyed the first two episodes but after Discovery and Picard I have learned my lesson not to call anything ‘great’ until the end of the season. ;)

But so far, off to a great start at least.

the Cage led to SNW, there is a segment in ones of the recent Ready room episodes called the 55 year pickup. Basically Akiva Goldsman thought Discovery was and should have been about Pike and crew. Once he accepted Kurtmans invitation to come on Discovery, he set about trying to find a way to get Pike and crew aboard. Basically its Akiva’s who was the driving force. Here is the link, the discussion starts at the 3 minute mark. https://youtu.be/ZIG4sa2EgZ4

He actually was the showrunner of Discovery in seasons 2 and 3 IIRC, but a co-showrunner. And even if he’s not the showrunner he does approve everything that goes on the screen. I don’t pretend to know just how much authority everyone has running their individual shows, but when you’re at the top of the heap you will naturally get the blame as much as the credit even if you really had very little to do with it because they aren’t paying you all that money just to be a cheerleader. Your job is both to make sure stuff gets out on time and that it’s QUALITY stuff!

The best example being Picard. I still can’t believe how AWFUL Picard season 2 ended up being and yes Kurtzman definitely gets some blame with that. He may not have written a single line but if he nodded at every script he saw and approved how the season was being laid out, then yes he still deserves the blame just as much as the people who actually produced it because your job as manager is to make sure everyone under you is delivering a good product or service and IMO it was nowhere close.

Now all that being said, I agree the ‘rage’ gets a little too much. Sadly this is par for the course of any big franchise. And if you hated the Kelvin movies and then Discovery, he already stumbled out of the gate in a big way. But here is a ‘secret’ I will let you in on, it doesn’t matter who would be running Star Trek today, half the fanbase would still think that person is a hack no matter what. It’s become like picking a new U.S. President, it just doesn’t matter who it is, half the country is just not going to like them because how divisive everything has gotten. And yes the same can definitely be said for Star Trek.

The irony is people who hates Kurtzman blames him for that division but yet not that long ago when Berman was tossed out, he was considered one of the ‘saviors’ of NuTrek along with Abams and Orci by a huge portion of the fanbase. It just proves how fickle fans are. Ask George Lucas and now Disney with Star Wars.

The irony is people who hates Kurtzman blames him for that division but yet not that long ago when Berman was tossed out, he was considered one of the ‘saviors’ of NuTrek along with Abams and Orci by a huge portion of the fanbase. It just proves how fickle fans are. Ask George Lucas and now Disney with Star Wars.

I don’t know, a lot of fans “saw through” Abrams/Orci/Kurtzman, certainly once plot points of the 2009 film started being leaked (Vulcan’s possible destruction being one I distinctly remember on this site), and that group of fans grew once ST09 came out.

I think your comparison with Lucas aren’t exactly comparable, even if they seem similar. A lot of fans have softened to Lucas after they saw what Disney did with the franchise. I don’t know if people appreciate Berman more now for the same reasons. Berman Trek probably wouldn’t work in 2022. Lucas’ Star Wars could possibly work in 2022.

ST 2009 is my second fav Trek film or all time, right behind TSFS and just ahead of WOK.

LOVE IT!

Avoid inglorious Treksperts if you like TSFS, they routinely make fun of it. One podcast they completely demolished it(I think it was the commentary of the film). It’s become something of a running joke to them.

TSFS is certainly not my favorite, but always liked it. I think the movie suffers from after how strong TWOK was. It was a direct sequel to that movie but not as strong. But the movie still have 2 great iconic scenes in it: Stealing the Enterprise and it’s destruction. I still remember watching the latter as a kid and felt like another character just died!

Stealing the Enterprise and it’s destruction showed the movies were willing to take real risks and also show how much kirk was willing to sacrifice to get back spock.
it something he would never have done or being able to do in the OS

I was 18 when I saw SFS and seeing the Enterprise blow up was harsher to me then seeing Spock’s end the previous film. To me, the Enterprise herself was as much a major character as Kirk and Spock.

Personally I can’t watch WOK without watching TSFS right afterwards. To me it’s one long glorious 4+ hour movie. Which usually leads me to TVH….addiction is a real thing. :)

I agree with you about the first Kelvin movie. I was talking about all the hype and goodwill leading up to the film itself. Once it came out, then yeah that’s when people drew a line in the sand and apparently never moved lol. There was division with the film for sure BUT I do think more fans liked the film then didn’t if not outright loved it. That’s just my opinion of course. And I think even the ones who didn’t love it was still hopeful about future sequels and just looked as the first film as a decent starting point. But yes, once STID came out and the people who hated the first film sealed their beliefs from that point on and why these movies have been having such a rough time sense to even get made. But that’s for another thread. ;)

As for as my Disney comparison, that’s what I was alluding to. People treated Lucas like he was Satan after the prequels and looked at Disney as the new saviors. And they were until once again, TLJ came out and been having the same issues since. And now a lot of people who wanted Lucas gone now wants him back lol. It just proves how fickle the fanbase is IMO. And for the record, I didn’t love the prequels either but I would’ve liked to seen more films by Lucas. I hated how he was treated after that. And yeah his style still works because half what Disney is doing is really what he did with the OT. TFA was just an updated version of ANH. The issue was people wanted THAT style of Lucas, not what he did with the prequels.

Finally I’m sorry I don’t remotely follow when you say people wouldn’t accept Berman Trek today. To me SNW IS Berman Trek! What exactly is different about it? It’s episodic stories solving a crisis of the week. The first episode was a run-in-the-mill first contact story gone wrong with bumpy forehead aliens-of-the-week ending with Pike basically giving an uplifting speech at the end the same way Picard or Janeway would to convince the aliens to work together and then they warp out.

The latest episode Children of the Comet, if you swiped out Pike and the Enterprise for Archer and his Enterprise and characters, how different would it be? You could have the exact same scenes practically. Archer would hang out and be buddy buddy with his crew until they the crisis hit. Then he later would be on the bridge trying to talk the aliens down while he send in Hoshi, Trip and T’Pol on the comet to try and figure out a way to stop it. And of course the crew would find a way to stop it and work something out with the aliens as it was done here. Imagine it with the Voyager crew trying to solve the same crisis. Exact same results.

This IS every other episode of TNG, ENT and VOY lol. Now I will say DIS and PIC are NOT Berman Trek shows in any real way. Those are both structured very differently being serialized with a more harsh and bleaker tone…and you can see how divided those shows are because of it.

But that is the other irony. Ten years ago, people would’ve said this type of story telling was dead for modern TV…today it’s back in vogue! ;)

TFA, ANH and TPM just share the same plots as they are the opening chapters in each of those trilogies.
FA is not a remake.

Obviously TFA isn’t a direct remake, I’m only saying it followed the template of ANH in practically every character and story beat. It told it’s own story but still copied ANH structure.

Good point about before and after ST09. When I wrote my reply I was tired and re-reading your point would have probably either made me write a different reply or not reply at all. Still not sure I agree about fans being fickle, just overly optimistic to a fault, but when presented with the results, they adjust their original biases, often to the opposite extreme.

As for “Berman Trek” in 2022, I would say his era can’t just be boiled down to it being episodic in nature, there’s more to it than that. Very little carried over from episode to episode during his run of the show. Even episodic television in 2022 largely continues character growth plot points from episode to episode, even if you could presumably watch episodes out of order. TNG, VOY and early ENT still had character growth, but it was often slow burning and you’d only see it in large brush strokes through the season or series, very few specific plot threads were carried over episode to episode.

DS9 is kind of it’s own beast as the people behind that show often mention that Berman ignored much of what they did as he was almost always focused on TNG, VOY and the movies and even then, the bulk of serialization happened either in a few episode arcs until the end when much of the show as serialized.

I haven’t seen SNW yet, but I can’t imagine that the show will be nearly as stand-alone when it comes to characterization or micro-storylines that would presumably affect the crew long-term.

Well that was just 90s TV in general of course. And the funny thing is every series carried over more and more as TV evolved. Enterprise carries over quite a bit in fact when compared to TNG because we saw the characters grow from their experiences, especially T’Pol. And by Enterprise later seasons, the characters backstories were being followed every episode because TV was changing by then. But the basic structure and tone of the shows is what I’m really talking about and it really feels like a Berman show, just updated obviously.

And obviously you haven’t seen SNW, it IS standalone! That’s my entire point. Yes certain character stuff carries over but not like it does in most shows today or like DIS and PIC. But yeah it’s only been two episodes so its not much to go on so far. But its much closer to the old shows than it is to PIC and DIS because that’s what fans wanted and to get it back to Kurtzman, he once again listened and did it.

Comparing the new shows, I would say SNW is closer to what Lower Decks does with its characters which frankly is similar to what VOY and ENT did. And that show is made by someone who is basically emulating all the 24th century shows as well. So the idea it can’t work today isn’t really true, it’s just not a lot of those shows on like it used to be but if they are good people will definitely watch.

I was excited for Star Trek 09… because I had not seen any Star Trek motion picture in the movies until that point. Although I was a huge fan since age 4… and grew up with TNG, DS9, VOY, and to a lesser degree with TOS and ENT.

The first trailers of ST09 had me REALLY excited as they were really well made… and the music from Two Steps from Hell really helped sell it to me.

When I then went to see the movie I was still super excited… and the start of it was really great… but the longer the movie went on… I just sank deeper and deeper into my seat. This was not Star Trek. This was Star Wars with Star Trek character names slapped on. It was all wrong… and a lot of things simply made no sense. This was not the saving of the franchise… this was its ruin. I knew it back then… and I still know it now.

Thanks for the response Lars! I been watching Trek since the late 70s! And watched them all starting with TOS of course.

And of course I know the ’09 film and others are really divided today. But at the time fans were truly excited, including me and I wasn’t really into rebooting TOS on the big screen at all. I really wanted them to do something new and original.

But I did like the film when I first saw it. Now, I don’t wanna brag, but I will! I actually saw it at the opening premiere at the Sydney Opera House in Australia at the time. And it was purely by accident. I just wanted to check out the premiere since it was so close to my job at the time and got a free ticket out of it. I ended sitting three rows up from JJ Abrams and all the main cast except Zoe Saldana who wasn’t there.

When you see a movie that way, especially a franchise you grew up with, it gives you a rush like you never felt before. Even to this day, the first shot of the Kelvin gliding passed the camera and you hear the the familiar computer blips, it felt like I was six years old again and just woke up on Christmas day. I’m sitting in a theater watching the rebirth of Star Trek in the best way possible. I swear when the credits rolled, I was waiting for Jesus to come through the screen and asked us did we have a good time? YES, YES WE DID JESUS!!! IT WAS GREATEST FILM IN THE HISTORY OF FILMS!! I was convinced I had just watched magic bestowed in front of me for 2 hours. Did Stanley Kubrick direct this film or was it really the guy who did Mission Impossible 3? Feels like Kubrick to me with just a tad more explosions and lens flairs than his typical movie.

When I saw it a month later in a regular theater with the other peasants, it was still good but oddly not as great as the first viewing. And then I realized ‘wait, this thing have a lot of plot holes in it? Wait so they did promote a 20 something cadet on academic probation into Captain of the flag ship? I thought I dreamed that? Why didn’t Nero just go to Romulus and warn people since you now had a century to figure things out? What the #$%@ is Spock doing just hanging out in a cave when the Starfleet outpost base is walking distance?” And on and on lol.

So I really liked it at first, but I definitely realized for all the lens flairs and sleek shots and hyper pacing, the film had a lot of problems. I was never bitter about it, it was at least fun. But I definitely understand why others had problems with it. And yes Kurtzman wrote a lot of that mess.

(Sorry this was so long, I always type too much every time I brag about watching it at the premiere! ;))

Nah you should. I also tend to write loooooong messages and posts. I tend to over-explain things to make my position as clear as possible :D

And I see your point. Watching TWOK 2 years ago with Shatner and meeting him afterwards (literally a week before all the covid lockdowns over here… when virtually all other showings were already being canceled) was kinda similar. Just with the added effect of knowing that my dad kinda grew up with that guy (well… in his teenage years). As did I… and now some 25-30 years later… I get to meet him.

Wow its cool you got to meet Shatner! I saw him at a convention in L.A. once back in the mid 90s but it was great to see him.

And I do like the Kelvin movies but I don’t look at them on the same level I look at the TOS and TNG films. The 09 film comes in #8 for me on my movie list because so many things just makes no sense in it lol but is very well made. So not horrible but not great either. I look at them more as fun distractions that you don’t take too seriously. Just big silly popcorn movies basically but captures the spirit of TOS IMO. I want to like them more, but they are badly written and I’m sick of the uber-villain revenge plots. I am SO done with it! If the fourth one does miraculously gets made, I’m hoping for something very different from those and yeah just a better written story. Fingers crossed! ;)

It’s really cute how we are all so super mega inclusive and equal and everyone is welcome. But if you are an old-school Star Trek fan… who happens to not like Kurtzman… you turn into a “so-called fan”. All of a sudden this is where tolerance seems to end.

Kurtzman is a tool. He’s not a Star Trek fan… he just happened to be involved with it thru his work with JJ, who himself is also not a Trekkie and only ever wanted to do Star Wars. And yes… this was literally the turning point when Star Trek got ruined.
They should have hired Seth when they had the chance. HE get’s and understands Star Trek. All Kurtzman does is lip- and fan service every now and again.

I still watch Star Trek… because crappy Star Trek is better than no Star Trek (for the time being)… but all of the new shows are largely missing the point. And they just churn out series after series to cash in as best as they can…

At the very least Seth should have been at the helm of Lower Decks. But with the autonomy to do nearly whatever he wanted, too.

Fortunately for me being a child of the 60s, I grew up with Star Trek, the Irwin Allen TV period with Lost In Space and all the 70s shows like Buck Rogers and Planet of the Apes. I do not get bogged down in the continual comparing of versions of shows that seems to be a real obstacle to many fans. I loved TOS and the Berman era with TNG being my favorite. I also love all the movies, love all the new stuff including one of my favourites Prodigy! Never thought I’d say that but I am a kid at heart.

Some episodes and stories in this Kurtzman era (if you wanna call it that) are average and I have to admit, Picard Season 2 was not the fun I thought it would be but I still shed a tear or two in the end. SNW is very exciting and I have been hanging out for this show since Disco 2. In the end I suppose I’m just happy there is new Star Trek on nearly every week now and I can always go back to the older shows whenever I want to these days.

Me and you think exactly alike Kevin! :)

I try not to compare eras either but I admit being on this board so long where people discuss the ‘Berman era’, ‘Kutzman era’. ‘NuTrek’. etc, it has rubbed off on me too at times. I used to even roll my eyes at it lol. For me Star Trek is just Star Trek. There is a difference between the style of shows since they do follow whatever the model of TV is at that time, so there are distinct differences in that sense. But end of the day good stories are good stories. If they work, then it doesn’t matter. That’s why many of us can still watch TOS even though it is pretty outdated looking and follow a standard of TV that wouldn’t work much today. But it’s still reigns supreme for many who grew up with it.

And as I said I do like the new shows, especially Prodigy and Lower Decks. I’m surprised just how much I do like those too. I guess we’re all kids at heart! Discovery I admit I have the hardest time with. It’s just so up and down for me. It’s not the most horrible show on or anything, but it’s not very consistent when compared to the other shows IMO. I want to like it more than I do. I was so excited when it jumped to the 32nd century. FINALLY an entire new era to explore since TNG started.

I still like the setting very much, but the last two seasons have just been up and down on a crazy level. I should love season 4, that’s the kind of Star Trek story I been wanting to see, but the execution just draaaaaggged and so many useless episodes. Discovery tries really hard but I just think the serialization is not in the show’s wheelhouse. I just don’t think it’s working. DS9 did it amazingly and why that’s my favorite show. Same for Enterprise. But Discovery I feel frustrated after every season.

Picard, I been writing enough about that recently so I’ll just say I’m deeply disappointed in it. Same issues like Discovery have but the story telling actually feels so much worse for me. It has one more season, so we’ll see. I’m super happy the TNG cast is coming back though. They are still my favorite cast out of everyone even though TNG is no longer my favorite show. That’s really the only thing that motivates me about next season frankly.

I do think SNW will be great, but I’m still hesitant right now. But like you and others, I’m just happy to have more Star Trek. Yes I’m down on some of the shows but there was a time I was down on TNG, DS9 and ENT as well. Today I love them all! So we’ll see. But I think those shows also just felt more like Star Trek to me. That was my biggest issue with DIS originally but it’s come around more in that sense.

So I am rooting for Kurtzman for no other reason we’re stuck with him for at least 5 more years and probably longer. I can call him a hack all day long or I can say what I think can be improved like others and hope they are listening…and they do seem to be listening. All we can ask for as fans. And it’s why SNW exist today, right?

Kurtzman and team hear the fans but aren’t guided or directed by the fans which is what I like. I’d be an idiot to assume these people who have made a lucrative career for themselves in film and television aren’t able to see themselves when and how they need to make changes and when and how to stay the course with their initial vision. Sometimes, fans believe because they wanted something and it happens, that they’re being “listened” to when in actuality, it was just the right decision that was put in motion long ago behind the scenes. Totally agree with you that he gets a lot of misdirected hate but this interview especially, put a smile on my face. I don’t want Trek that falls into fanfiction territory whether that’s my own personal thoughts or someone elses. I just want good stories and we’ve all lived through early seasons of TNG, a dreadful season 3 of TOS, early DS9 and Voyager seasons and a lot of misguided Enterprise episodes to know that shows find their footing. So much love and hope to the team of creators behind these modern Trek shows and (hopefully soon) movies. They catch hell from nitpicky fans but I hope they know how much we also appreciate them.

Star Trek is about science being the solution…

What a gut-buster – I’ve never laughed so hard!

Oh, I hope, next, he explains the science of a Captain’s quarters on a space ship with an industrial grill-grate stove top island, an open flame fireplace, AND is larger than the free-weight area of my gym!

What a steaming load of I-love-Star-Track-for-so-many-many-years garbage!!

And worse, the total soft-ball interview. : /

Dude, about that resume you sent to the Improv, well I hate to break it to you, but they ain’t calling you in for an interview.

BTW, its Star “Trek,” not “Track.”

Don’t you just hate it when your clever retort backfires because you didn’t read and understand the source? I hate it when that happens…

He’s not wrong, though.

Yep. His comment is what it is.

@Bee Dee

And how many 23rd century technology level starships have you built, for comparison?

What an asinine “retort”. Each viewer is perfectly within their rights to voice their opinion on whether the suspension of disbelief has been stretched or broken for the various facets of a show, including set design. So much of Kurtzman Trek IS about form over function – it’s there to look cool, with little other thought given. They actually used to use scientific advisors on the older shows. From everything from story points, to advise on control panels and bridge layout. The writers and producers were aware of the chain of command, and how officers are expected to react within that. None of that has been evident in any of the current live action shows. Fingers crossed they’ve nailed it with SNW so there’s an element of professionalism on the bridge, unlike the Raffi’s of this Universe. Like it or not, the buck DOES stop with Kurtzman. You want to know how good a producer is, make a note of how many course corrections are made season to season, how important story lines are shoved BETWEEN seasons (looking at you Picard), and how satisfied people are once the season is over. Only the most shallow and stubborn of apologists would say any of these seasons has been a resounding success, to date.

I tend to agree. I find the show promising still. But they have done some things that really took me out of the story. Like having a full on restaurant on the Enterprise. Or the HUGE Captain’s quarters. If that was really a new Rec room I actually could process it a little better. But it was presented like it was his quarters. There are some odd production decisions made that so far aren’t working. But I do think this is something that can be fixed.

Based on his own definition, Discovery has been way more “Star Wars” than “Star Trek”. A diplomatic or technobabble solution seems to be an afterthought in a lot of his Trek, used as a deus ex machina only after they’ve been able to get a few minutes of a space battle into an episode. I know everyone’s mileage will vary on this, but that’s how I see it.

The future shown in Picard is a reality that doesn’t mesh at all with the spirit of his “views on the future.” The state of the Federation is probably at it’s lowest point that we’ve ever seen. I see hardly any hope in anything Secret Hideout has done with Trek. We already know from other Kurtzman Trek that the entire Quadrant collapses and may finally rebuild into something hopeful in the 32nd(?) century.

Sorry, there are hardly any space battles in DSC… Some during the Klingon War (but not nearly as many as on DS9), a big and strange one against CONTROL in the S2 finale and that’s basically it… Some sidelined quarrels with the Emerald Chain that don’t even count in my book. The rest was pseudo-science… no real villains in either S3 or S4… They were basically up against Horta and V’Ger… DSC is more peaceful than either DS9, VOY or ENT…The Trekkiest Star Trek since TNG…

Ugh. I think space battles are awesome when done right in both Wars and Trek.
To me Star Trek was “smart” strategic battles with large spacecraft (the Enterprise being a “Heavy Cruiser”) where as Star Wars was just WW2 fighter planes in a space fantasy. Star Trek was historical analogs (Balance of Terror was a destroyer vs. a submarine with questions on when one should press an attack and even a preemptive strike, Star Wars was cool laser beams and fighter battles).
What went wrong was Star Trek battles now look like Star Wars fantasy battles. Large capital ships that can go faster than light now fly around like fighter craft that last 20 seconds in combat. Even DS9 which I liked had like 100 ships just running at 100 ships. All aliens use the pretty much the same weapons and tactics as the UFP, gone are the Romulan plasma torpedoes, everyone has a BOP, etc. There was a game called Starfleet Battles on 60s Trek where it had electronic warfare, transporter landing parties, suicide shuttles, all these alien weapons, etc – how did Trek combat get “dumbed down” in the 90s?
The big disappointment for me with Discovery is you finally set up an excuse for a D-7 battlecrusier going up against a Constitution class ship and we got fighter battles complete with the Klingons having Bird of Preys. Sigh.

Yeah… Except that WWIII in Star Trek never resorted to Nukes. We got past it. Which is what I liked about Trek. There was no nuclear holocaust trope found in other sci-fi of the day. I found that optimistic.

Thought Riker and Data’s lines in First Contact made it sound like they did use nuclear weapons in WW3.

Well we got past it after we used them lol.

And either way, what was ‘optimistic’ about having another world war, nukes or not?

The biggest fear back in the 70’s and 80’s was nuclear holocaust. And it was presented all over Sci-fi at the time. Trek was the only one that didn’t do that. Yes, there were the Eugenics wars. But it was implied that nukes were not used. I liked that Trek got around that and didn’t fall into the same trope of other sci-fi at the time. It’s part of what made Trek unique.

Uh, what? At least since TNG, WWIII was explicitly said to be some kind of limited nuclear war happening in the mid-21st century, roughly around 2050.

(They never made any direct allusions to it in TOS, but implied that humanity had learned from its own tragic history. Maybe due to the fact that so many people who created and worked on it were WWII veterans, and the idea of a WWIII was unpalatable / unthinkable, esp after the Cuban Missile Crisis)

Encounter at Farpoint has the TNG crew in Q’s 2079 court of the ‘post-atomic horror’, and the movie First Contact uses the level of radioactive isotopes in the atmosphere to determine the time period (said to be about a decade after WWIII, in 2061).

ENT shows Colonel Green, who killed millions of ‘radiation-damaged humans’ as part of his campaign to keep humanity ‘pure’ which later inspired Paxton’s Terra Prime movement against aliens on Earth. So that definitely states some sort of nuclear conflict.

Episode one of SNW shows the nuclear conflict, graphically, on screen, with cities being destroyed.

There is a bit of soft retconning in SNW to move the Eugenics Wars to a date later than 2024, so there was a ‘Second Civil War, which led to the Eugenics Wars, and finally just WWIII.’ Mostly as the real 1990s turned out to be not as futuristic as they predicted in the 60s. :)

Mostly as the real 1990s turned out to be not as futuristic as they predicted in the 60s. :)

I think that’s more of a failing of Trek writers, and a pretty sizable contingent of fans, who are incapable of separating Trek’s history from the real world’s history.

Should Trek last until the 2050s without a reboot, will production force the series to “explain” why WWIII didn’t happen the way it’s shown on-screen? I remember when those Khan books tried to explain that the Eugenics wars were “secret,” all because we hit the 1990s, and 33% of the world wasn’t really run by Super Humans.

FYI, to all those fans out there, Vulcans don’t actually exist. “First Contact” will not actually happen in 2061, the Voyager program had at least 6 vehicles launched, and so on.

Doctor Who has had the same issue since it returned in 2005 with the show runners and other production staff all but saying that the audience is either stupid or the writers are too lazy to imagine a world where everyone knows about aliens and whatnot. They either do soft-resets or just outright ignore the fact that everyone on the planet would know about aliens/interdimensional beings/etc. Rick and Morty and the MCU (among other shows and franchises) embrace this aspect. Characters live in a world similar, but very different than our present and that aspect largely works.

I’m probably in the minority here, but I would have loved Trek to just embrace the fact that our history is different than Trek’s history and run with it, 1990s Eugenics War and all.

I get what you are saying and have presented that thought here before. I find it nuts to change the dates of the Eugenics Wars just because they didn’t REALLY happen in the 90’s. This show is fiction. In their history it DID happen. I can’t wait to see them retcon first contact with Vulcans when it doesn’t actually happen in 40 years.

There is no reason the show can’t just stick to their fictional history just because it didn’t happen for real when that time came.

Farpoint could be chalked up to a Q fantasy.

The line in FC was odd because there was no nuclear exchange that in Trek history. So that could very well be yet another retcon.

Colonel Green never fired off nukes as far as we can tell.

And the opening episode of SNW was a blatant retcon. Or change of stated Trek history. All that does is suggest strongly that SH Trek is 100% reboot in spite of what the producers claim. The maker of the car can tell me the car is blue when I can plainly see the car is gray.

I guess the argument is that since Trek changes things so often that one really can’t take anything they do at any time as actual canon. Perhaps it’s a mistake to even complain about this stuff. If we wait long enough it will change yet again. Perhaps because it changes so often it is possible that we could all be right in our own personal interpretations of what is shown on screen?

Actually, the date of the Eugenics Wars may not need to be retconned, if one considers that two different calendars were used during the era of the Eugenics Wars. According to one calendar, these conflicts happened in the 1990s, but on another calendar, the wars happened in the 21st century.

“Space Seed” hinted at these two different calendars: On the one hand, Spock, as we know, said, “The mid-1990s was the era of the last so-called World War,” which McCoy subtitled as the Eugenics Wars. In addition, he, Kirk, Scott, and McGivers dated the Botany Bay, Khan, and his people to the 1990s and the 20th century.

On the other hand, Kirk also gave an estimate of two centuries for how long Khan, and by extension his people, had been sleeping aboard the Botany Bay; and Scott said the sleepers were apparently in suspended animation when the ship took off. According to the Memory Alpha website, the in-universe date of the episode was 2267. This would mean that the Eugenics supermen took off from Earth circa 2067.

So, if two calendars were used during the Eugenics Wars era, 1996 on one calendar would be circa 2067 on another, and the answer to Matalas’ question, “Maybe Spock was wrong?” is that the Vulcan science officer who endeavored to be accurate may not have been wrong after all.

Since in the real life, no world war, Eugenics or not, happened in the 1990s, then the dates in “Space Seed” were not dates on the Gregorian calendar, but dates on a calendar offset from the Gregorian by approximately 71 years, one in which the years 1992 to 1996 had special significance.

In any case, the Federation principally measured time in Stardates, not dates on the old calendars, including the Gregorian.

I should also note that when “Space Seed” and the slightly earlier episode “Tomorrow is Yesterday” were produced, TOS was apparently set in the 22nd century, but in Whitfield and Roddenberry’s book, “The Making of Star Trek,” published during the third season of TOS, Roddenberry said, “In the beginning, I invented the term ‘Star Date’ simply to keep from typing ourselves down to 2265 A.D., or should it be 2312 A.D.?”

I think you might need to check up on that. Nukes are alluded to have been used in WW3 in Star Trek canon. ‘Post Atomic Horrors’, Picard having a report by Data in First Contact, that “due to the radio-isotopes in the atmosphere, I believe we have arrived 10 years after the third world war.” That quote might not be 100% accurate but it’s something like that. And I think there will be other examples I am sure.

Nah, WWIII used nukes. It’s canon.

Canon seems to change with every new show. Perhaps it might be foolish to tightly hold on to it?

I too love the optimism of Star Trek. Up until First Contact, Star Trek did not mention that WWIII resorted to nukes.

It did however hint at the nature of the war. Even TOS did: In “Space Seed,” Spock said, “Your Earth was on the verge of a dark ages. Whole populations were being bombed out of existence.”

“Return to Tomorrow” had the following dialogue between Kirk and Sargon:

SARGON: . . . the records of our travels were lost in the cataclysm which we loosened upon ourselves.
KIRK: A war?
SARGON: A struggle for such goals and the unleashing of such power that you could not comprehend.
KIRK: Then perhaps your intelligence wasn’t so great, Sargon. We faced a similar crisis in our early nuclear age. We found the wisdom not to destroy ourselves.
SARGON: And we survived our primitive nuclear era, my son. But there comes to all races an ultimate crisis which you have yet to face.
KIRK: I don’t understand.
SARGON: One day our minds became so powerful, we dared think of ourselves as gods.

In “The Omega Glory,” McCoy said of Omega IV, “I’m convinced that once there was a frightening biological war that existed here,” and Spock said that the Kohms and Yangs “fought the war your Earth avoided.”

In addition, the Third World War was bookended by a number of episodes that described the weapons of the era after the Second World War: In “The Doomsday Machine,” Kirk said, “Way back in the 20th century, the H-Bomb was the ultimate weapon, their doomsday machine, and we used something like it to destroy another doomsday machine. Probably the first time such a weapon has ever been used for constructive purposes.”

In “Assignment: Earth,” Spock said, “Once the sky was full of orbiting H-bombs, the slightest mistake could have brought one down by accident, setting off a nuclear holocaust.” When Roberta Lincoln attempted to stop Gary Seven from detonating a malfunctioning suborbital warhead, Seven said, “You’ve got to let me finish what I started, or in six minutes World War Three begins.” Fortunately, as Spock stated at the end of the episode, Seven’s eventual detonation of the warhead “resulted in a new and stronger international agreement against the use of such weapons.”

And in “Balance of Terror,” Spock said the Earth-Romulan conflict “was fought, by our standards today, with primitive atomic weapons . . .”

The guy clearly gets it. I wish some of the shows better illustrated that fact, but it’s hard to read an interview like this and come away still feeling the wrong person for the job.

Agreed. People may not think his shows are as strong as the others but he understands Star Trek like everyone else making it before him.

…then I guess he’s not broadcasting that understanding to his extensive staff(?)

C’mon, that’s not completely fair. You really don’t think shows like LDS and PRO doesn’t get what Star Trek is? Those are pure Trek in form and understand this franchise very well. You don’t have to like the shows themselves but they do get it! And Kurtzman is the one who approved them.

DIS and PIC are different but frankly they are just trying to do something different with the franchise in general. And both DIS and PIC were made by people who DIDN’T want the old stuff like Bryan Fuller and Patrick Stewart. They wanted to show a darker universe in general, which I’m completely fine with as long as it’s good. Well, that’s the rub for me lol because a lot of it isn’t frankly.

But SNW, seems to be a response to where DIS and PIC failed. And I said this in my OP that every show has gotten stronger and how they view Star Trek as well. And it doesn’t mean SNW will be great but it’s very much Star Trek IMO.

But if you watch the shows he has overseen it’s quite easy to feel is is the wrong person for the job. Saying the right thing is less important to me than DOING the right thing.

I’ve liked one season of Discovery (4), none of Picard except maybe three episodes, and 100% of everything else so far. So I think maybe he’s getting there, but in some ways I agree with you, and I wish I knew where the disconnect was between his statements and his results.

I think Kurtzman’s overall theme is awesome and consistent with Trek in that humanity despite all its flaws will learn and succeed despite all the challenges and hardships ahead aided by science not only to overcome the difficulties of space flight but overcoming prejudices and human conflicts. Example – even as Russia is again up to evil acts today, Trek predicts that eventually Moscow will come to its senses and cut it out with the statism and invasions and work together with other nations to explore the universe (as they probably would have done had we ratified the Budapest Memo on Security Assurances back in 94). Now that being said two challenges to the theme – that of acceptance of differences and that of the definition of “science”. I think looking at those the wrong way combined with horrid political analogies has wrecked some potentially awesome opportunities. The first challenge to the theme relating to differences – TNG basically threw out Roddenbery’s original thoughts on “new humans” versus “today’s humans” as discussed in the TMP novel where he argued that only today’s humans having overcome hardships and respecting differences could actually handle the hardships of space and the different cultures. Instead TNG Roddenbery wanted to play visionary and say that humans will evolve into these perfect monolithic creatures akin the Borg in complete contrast to pre-90s Roddenbery. There is a difference between the two. One vision is that humanity can be diverse and have differences of opinion yet everyone can still work together. The other vision is one in which only one version humanity is correct and everyone who isn’t like that is unenlightened and pretty much evil. This critical to Trek because the latter when applied to aliens basically has nothing to learn and indeed all aliens by extension should accept the greatness that is the perfect human. The former accepts differences and that they’re may not be one answer for everything. Is the answer to prevent conflict is to eliminate all differences and accept one canon as opposed to respecting differences and finding common ground, I argue to ask what the Borg would answer vs. what a UFP should. Now beyond that, who would the viewer identify with – some fake pseudo- perfect character where no one argues or real characters having to deal with differences? The second challenge that really bugs me as an engineer is the science. If time travel existed the universe would have destroyed itself and/or we would see the impact of time travel already. Ironically you can always time travel forward by moving at relativistic speeds but if you could go backwards you really would wreck space-time. The Uncertainty Principle prohibits spacetime reversal. And logically if your characters can go back in time they can save everyone and everyone ad infinitum. Apply the logic and you can see the “science” says not to include that. Also science fiction should definately extrapolate and push boundaries (like faster than light travel) but it is not fantasy. There is no hint that a magic mushroom is going to provide us free energy and the ability to jump in space time. None. Follow the science and the Spore drive powered by mushrooms is out. Ironically I don’t get why you would want the spore drive or time travel from a drama perspective either – don’t you want consequences and a journey?!? Also we live in a generation where no one seems to understand thermodynamics, that there is no free lunch and the universe is slowly moving to a heat death. There is no free energy. We are probably going to need Penrose constructs around black holes to get the energy to make anti-matter. Crews are going to be on their own as they accelerate to 0.99999c to get places within their lifetime but will leave today behind. But again forget the science, from a drama perspective why would you want the crew to have infinite free energy? What part of conflict, danger, excitement, action, adventure? Why come up with all this fake soap opera drama when real space flight crews will have to deal with being isolated from home and crews having to represent all of humanity like the frigates of old? ENT would have been way more exciting had they had to use fighters instead of transporters, nuclear weapons instead of phasers and no subspace comms. Having the crew in command of a single powerful starship that decides the fate of the galaxy will be x100000 more exciting than having it where they can phone home for a decision to be made or call in 1000 ships to do their work for them. So anyway, it’s awesome to see humans aided by science exploring the universe but let’s keep it science fiction and not fantasy both… Read more »

So weapons aren’t science. Glad that’s cleared that up.

Starting to sound like a politician….grandiose ideas and philosophies but results are sketchy so far. Few glimmers of hope but some major disappointments

You haven’t liked SNW so far?

Your comment gives me hope for the future

Don’t know what this means? Unlike you, I actually like and enjoy Star Trek. You’re the one who don’t seem to enjoy it much as you bitterly complain about 80% of the shows. Please stop insinuating I’m the one with the issue. In fact, I predict you will start hating SNW soon too.

You need the hope for the future, not me. I been enjoying it all along. ;)

That’s actually a very good analogy. He’s the politician who says all the right things and get’s himself elected. But then doesn’t follow through. Which sadly is quite common.

Alex Kurtzman is not a Star Trek fan.

He said so himself in many interviews.
For example in a 2019 interview in The Hollywood Reporter:

“I go back to my childhood and Luke Skywalker, the [Star Wars] farm boy who looks out at the twin suns of Tatooine and imagines his future. Trek never gave me that,” Kurtzman told THR. “Trek was always fully formed adults, already in Starfleet and people who have decided who they are. And it never was aspirational that way. It’s important to me to find a way to go back and reach younger kids in a way that Trek should and never really has.”

There are many more examples.

The Difference between Star Trek and Star Wars:
Both are action-adventure shows/movies set in space.
Star Wars is about monomyth storytelling, the hero’s journey, and Jungian archetypes.
Star Trek plots are driven by politics and ideology, how science and technologies impact societies and individuals, and moral and philosophical allegories.

Star Trek is about thinking.

Star Wars is about feeling.

Both are important, but they are not the same thing.

Berman-era Trek had voices in the production staff to steer them away from awful science, canon or general “common sense” mistakes. If these current writers have any sort of advisers doing the same, they aren’t listening to them. That’s why we have 5 mile torbolift fights now, and other nonsense that just ticks off and insults the serious fans.

What’s that old saying in Hollywood? Something like “you’re only as good as your last project” regardless of your entire career.

So, with Strange New Worlds being as awesome as it is and his most recent project, Kurtzman is amazing!!

I guess we can forget about most of the 2nd season of Picard, Discovery, Star Trek into Darkness, “The Mummy,” two Transformers movies, “The Amazing Spider-Man 2,” lol.

But, Strange New Worlds is so good it’s worth it!

I still think it’s strange people are calling SNW an amazing show based on two episodes. Of course I get what they mean, it’s great so far, but yeah based on Picard and Discovery there is no proof it’s going to just stay great. I know I’m sounding very cynical right now, but fans always do this. After the first two episodes of Picard in season 2 people were convinced Picard was truly a great show and it fell apart pretty quickly.

I like SNW two episodes and I do think no matter what it will be a better show than PIC and DIS due to it’s structure and tone alone. But I’m not ready to consider anything great until we get a deeper view of the season at least. The same people who is making this show made the others too.

Perhaps, Kurtzman and the (20+ !) producers have unexpectedly proven to themselves that they’re actually no good at darker story-arc Trek, but – perhaps – had a knack for a more TOS lighter-hearted series all along. It’s been a very convoluted and tonally uneven journey to get to this point, but wouldn’t it be great if the Producers and Writers etc. fit the isolated episodic and (generally speaking, we wouldn’t want them all to be light all the time) lighter hearted Trek like a glove. Every creative team needs limits, and perhaps the structuring of TOS/TNG like episodic limits, and having to write more family-friendly fare is bringing out their better sides, and infusing them with optimism and creative excitement at the possibilities too. It’s showing through. Or perhaps they find it more fun to write in this manner. Afterall, it’s keeping them from getting bored having a ‘refresh’ or clean slate episode to episode, rather than having to slog through the long-form story arc. Fingers crossed this quality level remains high, as this could turn into a special show. I hope they employ some scientific advisors, and proper sci-fi authors to keep a solid footing in both camps. and avoid it turning into soap-opera Trek like Disco. often does. I think it’s essential to have your core writers, to keep the tone, but the freelancers to provide the freshness and the ideas flowing.

I think SNW does show promise. It’s two episodes have been better than any of the other live action show. But I’m stopping short of speaking about how great it is. There are problems that unlike Star Trek Discovery can still be fixed. So while there are some problems there is still great potential. That’s as far as I can go at this point.

I am a bit concerned they started into season 2 before getting reaction from season 1. So it feels like if any positive changes are coming they may have to wait until a potential season 3.

Nothing against a better future, but in the meantime, I’d be happy with better writing in the first place.

Kurtzman sounds resigned to nuclear war. Nobody should believe the Star Trek mythology that nuclear war is the BEGINNING of great things. It’s the beginning of horrible things. Unspeakable things. You should be screaming at every politician within range of your tweets to stop escalating the situation in Ukraine with weapons and money. The ONLY aid Ukraine should get is humanitarian. If you care about your planet you’d better snap out of entertainment mode and speak up before you get more global warming than you can handle, and in a heartbeat, not decades or centuries.

Warning: Kremlin Gremlin detected.

Reading this article about Kurtzman talking about (his) Star Trek being a road map to a better future is like listening to the Devil talking about salvation.

Man, tough room! 😂

I was going to say that’s awfully harsh even for me!

Science is always better than war, and of course science is most important in general, but let’s not put *too* much faith in it as a way of “improving society.” We have enough recent horrible examples of societies who though they were doing just that.

‘trek’ has always warned about the dangers of science like A I, terra forming, genetic engineering

Yep very true. Every Star Trek show has dealt with it on some level. Captain Janeway said it best: “The final frontier has some barriers that shouldn’t be crossed.” She’s not just saying that as an explorer but also as a scientist herself. The Borg are the perfect symbol of what happens when science goes too far.

That’s why I love Star Trek. Its entire core is about science, exploration and progress but it also preaches about those dangers too when they are taken to extremes.

(Thank you very much for your reply to my “15 points about PIC Season 2” on the other thread last week. I’d mostly been staying off Trekmovie threads for a few months because I’d planned to binge-watch Season 2 and I was trying to avoid spoilers).

For once I actually really liked Kurtzman’s interview. He does seem to be a sincere guy and — as others here have said — he also seems to finally “get it”. The issue so far has of course been the execution of all these high-minded ideas, but at least Kurtzman has now confirmed that he absolutely has the right perspective.

I’ve previously suggested that there should be a big-screen Trek sequel to TMP. It’s belatedly occurred to me that this could also have made a great PIC Season 2 instead. Imagine if the storyline was basically a mixture of Contact, Interstellar and Ice Station Zebra. Starfleet Intelligence has finally decrypted some of the data downloaded from V’Ger at the end of TMP, and it appears to include coordinates for that “advanced machine civilisation”: At the far end of the Delta Quadrant (further than anything seen on VOY). The Stargazer is fitted with a classified cutting-edge slipstream drive and sent on a top-secret Starfleet Intelligence mission to initiate first contact. Rios is in ISZ’s “Rock Hudson” role captaining the vessel; Picard is on-board as the senior Starfleet representative due his vast exploration and diplomacy experience; Seven due to her experience of the Delta Quadrant and the possible Borg connection; James Callis is in ISZ’s “Patrick McGoohan” role as the Section 31-linked Starfleet Intelligence agent officially commanding the mission and with a hidden agenda. The story and themes could be properly explored in a 10-episode season, it could look spectacular, and you could link the “artificial life” aspect to the philosophical implications for Picard personally too. With suitably skilled writers it could have been pretty damn good, I think ;)

One thing I have liked about Trek was when they had a situation where the solution wasn’t so cut and dry. You had multiple possibilities that posed their own pitfalls and advantages with none looking like one way was inherently better than the other. When an episode ended with the lesser evil was often a mark of a good one.

“Serpents for the Garden of Eden, Mr Scott.”

Wow, it sounds like he *finally* gets it!