Have you ever noticed…

Have you ever noticed…

Guinan, the bartender aboard the Federation Starship Enterprise in Star Trek: The Next Generation, is hundreds of years old. In the episode, Yesterday’s Enterprise, she is able to sense it when the timeline changes. She met Picard five centuries before Picard meets her. And the Enterprise has holodecks which are bigger on the inside. Discuss.

4 thoughts on “Have you ever noticed…

  1. Well, the writers of ST-TNG were looking for a way to be even more ponderous, heavy-handed and pretentious than usual? I am a fan of Trek in its original 1960s form…never a ‘Trekkie’, I could always take it or leave it; but I liked the stories and concepts. Alas, I never thought much of the subsequent developments of that universe, and I always felt that TNG never really captured the original. To me, that series degenerated to a lot of posturing with very little real character interaction, driven often by writing for fans for whom Trek had become canonical. Much of it courtesy of a ‘Roddenfuture’ in which conflict had been removed. Nice idealism but it doesn’t make for good stories. I’ve just finished reading Brian Robb’s ‘Star Trek’, which is a kind of pot-history expose of the story behind the franchise, whcih is telling – the main argument appears to be that Roddenberry’s vision was – ultimately – boring, and it was the influence of other writers that led to the more interesting tales. Robb shares my view that the franchise degenerated to writing for its fan-base, without attracting a wider audience – which is what killed it. To me, the whole thing worked best as a light comedy – there were several eps of the original series that worked brilliantly that way, and one of the TOS-cast movies did the same. That said, I really enjoyed the re-boot movie of 2009, a very different vision & one that works well for the 21st century.

    Bit of a rant, but maybe a conversation starter… 🙂

    1. A conversation in which, I’m afraid, I won’t be able to participate as my exposure to the original is severely limited. I need to get hold of them as much as I need to get hold of the Doctors, pre-Eccleston (actually pre-McGann as I’ve managed to see the eighth Doctor television movie).

      I like TNG, mostly, I think, because of Picard (though I think I mostly like him because of Patric Stewart – that man is simply superb no matter what role he plays). I have thought the way they try to address social issues like sexuality and prejudice are heavy-handed, as you say. It’s as if they went into the episodes with the goal of making a social commentary, rather than having a good story as goal and allowing the commentary to flow naturally from that.

      As for the near-Utopian society, I don’t really have the frame of reference to compare it to TOS, but I did I enjoy the TNG films, First Contact and Nemesis much more than the series, probably because of the conflict and the heightened tension that entails.

      I also enjoyed the new movies very much, except (once I became aware of it) the fact that wherever you are on a starship in those films, there’s constantly a bunch of lights shining in your eyes. Who designs a starship (or any vehicle or building) like that, for crying out loud? Do yourself a favour and watch the How It Should Have Ended parody of the ’09 film:

      Look at that. I was able to converse after all 😀

      1. Excellent ‘how it should..’ ending! Yes, I can’t help thinking that the demands of Hollywood sometimes kill the suspension of disbelief stone dead. Another one was the rim of lights around the helmet visors in the original Battlestar Galactica – instant dazzle effect while trying to spot a Cylon raider against the darkness of space… sigh… I think I can feel a blog post coming on about Trek – the book I’ve just read kept referring to the ‘Roddenberry storytelling box’, which deserves a bit of exploration.

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