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mj

First Impressions of Star Trek Discovery

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Ummm.....She's in jail!

So I watched the first episode after watching 60 Minutes. It seemed a little tedious but I watched the whole episode. I decided to go ahead and pay for CBS All Access, but the one with commercials.

And I watched the second episode which ended up with Commander Birnham (sp?) stripped of rank and put in jail for life, for mutiny, and so forth. Course I realize that she won't stay in jail...

As a fan of the original series and of Uhura, I was not anticipating jail.

 

But someone on 'After Trek' pointed out that her back story sounded a lot like Worf's, whose parents were killed, leaving him to be raised by humans. I guess she will be pulled out of prison by the captain of Discovery,

like Tom Paris in Voyager.

 

I'll watch for awhile. I now see why CBS put a stop to the more engaging fan fiction, Axanar.

Edited by mj

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I only saw the first episode on regular TV, but I can believe the jail part. I'm a bit concerned about the special effects. I don't ever remember communication by holographic interface on Star Trek before, though I am old and perhaps am not remembering well. It does look very similar to Star Wars type communications. I am not as upset about the look of the Klingons, as there are supposed to be 24 different houses, presumably with some unique development in different areas. I worry that this one episode may not persuade enough regular TV viewers to invest in watching the streaming series. Our old TV won't be able to show the streaming series I fear. Discovery looks interesting but if it doesn't attract enough viewers, will it be cancelled? Probably not, but time will tell....

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I am not completely sold on this series...yet. It is a pilot ep and as such it sets a pace for the series, and it seems like much of it was overacted and other parts were laden with f/x. Don't even get me started on the plot holes such as Burnham being Spock's adoptive sister, although Spock  never mentioned he had a brother in Sybok either (technically half-brother). Its also hard to gauge the timeline of this series. I read that it was set 10 years before Kirk and it occurs in the prime timeline, but it is hard to gauge that by watching this first ep alone.

There were some bright spots to the show: the Starfleet principle of exploration and of standing its ground against aggression was familiar and good to see on tv again-even if it was only for one night. I also liked the direction they are taking the Klingons in - uniting all 24 houses. I also liked what i saw of the casting for this show. The lead made quite an impression on Walking Dead. She will likely do the same with Discovery.

Tonight's pilot ep gets a grade of a 'B'. Good for a first look, but definite room for improvement. It has promise so as of right now I am not going to write it off. I will have to see more eps which means a subscription to All Access before casting judgment. I hope the investment is worth it. 

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My first impressions: I liked it.

Updating the tech was the right thing to do imo, I can live with the changes. Whenever I watch classic Trek from now on I'll just imagine this tech is present.

I really appreciate the Klingons finally getting some long overdue backstory filled in. Looking back now at Enterprise it is easy to see a huge missed opportunity there. Breaking their backstory out of its shell should have been way higher on their do list right out of the gate. I wonder if the Augment infected flatheads will ever make an appearance. lol

Despite the recycled, sole survivor of some destroyed outpost storyline, Green as Burnham (burn-ham) just nailed it! She is the best character so far imo. I don't care that Spock never mentioned having an adopted sister, he never mentioned Sybok either. Green's passion for the character was written all over her face. 

OMG! I loved the Sarek/Burnham mindmeld connection. Such a huge tie-in to previously hinted at, (Spock to Picard: 'We never bonded') capability. And how about that callback to Spock being reeducated in ST3 - brilliant!

First impression score for first 2 episodes: B

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I...didn't hate the pilot but there was just too many differences with established canon. So the Klingons of TOS and later series are still canon right?  Does Bellana Torres mother looks like these new Klingon's now? The tech... I think it's too advanced for the 2250's era. The bridge looks just as or more advanced than  Enterprise E's 120 years later. I didn't think that the sets should look exactly like a 50 yo set but perhaps they could have come half way? The uniforms? So I guess the uniforms worn in The Cage are not canon anymore?

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23 hours ago, Admiral Kirk said:

I...didn't hate the pilot but there was just too many differences with established canon. So the Klingons of TOS and later series are still canon right?  Does Bellana Torres mother looks like these new Klingon's now? The tech... I think it's too advanced for the 2250's era. The bridge looks just as or more advanced than  Enterprise E's 120 years later. I didn't think that the sets should look exactly like a 50 yo set but perhaps they could have come half way? The uniforms? So I guess the uniforms worn in The Cage are not canon anymore?

So you do hate it?

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25 minutes ago, Æ said:

So you do hate it?

No I don't hate it. I found it to be entertaining and saw that it was beautifully made with great production quality. I just wish that it was set in the 25th century and that the species they were dealing with  were  not Klingons. 

Æ likes this

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I was a bit underwhelmed.  Character development was corny and schlocky as all get out.  That's one thing Star Trek normally did very well was character development, and this was just so poor in that regard that it ruined the episode for me.

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^Kinda harsh given its only been two episodes.

TNG, DS9, VOY ENT all had more character development within their pilots?

The star here is Burnham and for her to already be imprisoned for life is pretty big development, IMO. :lol: Seriously though, finding out all we did about her backstory really did nothing for you?

 I think it's at least on par with what we learned about the Mains in the previous series.

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Honestly, as much as I *wanted* to love it... I didn't. Granted, I'll defend it all day long because, let's be real, the entire first season of TNG sucked (IMO). You have to give a series time to come into its own and for the actors to really settle into their characters. I didn't love the premiere episode of any series (DS9 was probably the strongest), so DSC gets a pass. Thoughts below are admittedly based on ONE EPISODE ONLY... as I probably won't be paying for CBS any time soon. 

Pros: The effects were strong, if a little nauseating (they went a bit overboard with camera angles). Saru was well-acted, and I'm a fan of Michelle even though I couldn't always understand her lines. It seems like it *could* be a strong premise/plot. I don't mind the technology updates or the plot deviations because some of those will be necessary to make the show palatable to modern audiences. 

Cons: It was too Treknobabble-heavy for the uninitiated. While watching it, all I could think was, "this is far too plodding to gain any new fans", which is what the series needs to survive. Even *I* got bored a few times, not for lack of action, but due to the length of some of the monologues. The writing needed... editing. I also wasn't a huge fan of Martin-Green's acting (sorry, AE). I'm sure she's a fantastic actress, and I was excited about her in this role. But playing an emotional human raised by logical Vulcans would be a tough task for any actor, and I don't think she was as realistic/natural as I'd hoped. I place half the blame on the script (many of her word-choices seemed forced and unnecessarily heady), and I'm sure she'll grow into it. The Klingon parts were probably a bit much for the casual fan. And a ship covered in coffins? ...Just seemed like the show was trying too hard on that one, at least this early. 

So... points for effort, but not a home run. My "armchair quarterbacking"? More natural dialogue from the writers for Burnham's character would've made a hell of a difference for me. 

Here's hoping it's successful... without my money. 0_0

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1 hour ago, Ace said:

and I'm a fan of Michelle even though I couldn't always understand her lines.

People on many shows today sound to me like they are mumbling so I always keep the CC on not to miss anything.

1 hour ago, Ace said:

More natural dialogue from the writers for Burnham's character would've made a hell of a difference for me. 

What does 'natural dialogue' mean? Do you mean chit-chat, or shooting the breeze kind of dialogue or, like above, you just couldn't understand her?

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Closed-captioning drives me batty... especially if it obscures the effects. : ) 

My personal impression is that the writers were trying a bit *too* hard to make her sound Vulcan. Some of her longer monologues or "personal log"-type soliloquies struck me as very wooden and with unrelatable vocab. Some of her explanations could've been just as effective and logical with about half the adjectives and adverbs. It seemed (again, to me), like they were trying to present her as a Vulcan almost entirely through text/script, rather than leaving room for the performer's nuances . Spock and Tuvok etc. represented the nature of their culture through performance as much as language, but didn't seem as burdened by lengthy or wordy exposition... or the smartest-sounding adjectives the writers could find in a nearby thesaurus. Ha. At first, I thought I just wasn't connecting with her acting. Then I realized it was only partly the performance, and just as much (if not more so) the words she was given to say in those pieces. 

Just my initial take. I'd have to watch it again to see if it still struck me that way the second time around. 

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Okay. It worked for me but to each their own. 

:congrats: on reaching 4,000 posts!

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