Echidna Media Organization project S.N.A.L. (emo_snal) wrote,
Echidna Media Organization project S.N.A.L.

Star Trek Next Generation Season 1

I have finished watching Season 1 of Star Trek Next Generation on Netflix. Recall, I had watched the later seasons back when they originally aired, but the earlier seasons have always been prehistory to me. I also just watched the first episode of season 2. Here are some of my thoughts and observations.

Picard: In general, whereas in the Original Series (which recall I also just watched all of) Kirk was undoubtedly the "star" and main focus of just about every single episode, in TNG it's interesting to note Picard is rarely actually the "star" of any episode. He's of course always there with a commanding presence both from his literal role and formidable acting ability, but he doesn't generally go on away missions and he's often kind of babysitting the ship as other people get involved in the nitty gritty of their misadventures. I had always assumed he was just your average "American" type with a vestigial French name but a few times in Season 1 they reference him actually being French. Was the franchise trying to appeal to a French demographic? In the first episode or two he came off as really kind of gruff and initmidating, which I dno't remember from the latter seasons but I liked it. The gruffness kind of wore off during season 1 but as of the first episode of season 2 he was back at it with the gruffness. It was especially satisfying that he was being particularly gruff to Wesley Crusher because...

Wesley Crusher: I had forgotten how absolutely annoying this character is! I recently read somewhere that he's actually been voted the second most annoying sci fi character ever after Jar Jar Binks so I guess I'm not alone. By the latter seasons I think he only made occasional appearances but he's in nearly every episode of Season 1 and he is sooo annnoying. I can easily see them thinking "oh we should make a character that appeals to the teenage boy demographic!" but really you don't need to put a(n annoying) teenage boy on a starship to do that, its going to appeal just fine without spacedweeb. I read (I also enjoyed reading up about each episode after watching it) that Wesley Crusher actor Will Wheaton himself even found the character annoying and blamed the writing ... but I'm not letting him off on that I think the character probably could have been acted in a way that to some degree saved it (I still think that for example the Spock character was a recipe for a really dislikable character but was turned completely around by Leonard Nimoy).

Data: I had totally forgotten how funny Data is/was. He does a great job "naively" uttering deadpan one-liners his character doesn't realize are funny and just generally he's great and my memory totally wasn't giving him credit.

Tasha Yar: So she suddenly dies (spoiler alert) about two episodes from the end of the season. All I could get as a reason for this after brief googling was that she "didn't feel they were giving her character enough to do," but I feel like there's gotta be more to this story because she was a central character in most episodes, and why wouldn't she at the very least wait till the end of the season? It all seems very fishy to me.

Chief Engineer of the Week: for some reason they decided not to cast a Chief Engineer for season 1 and about four different people show up as "chief engineer" at different points. This seems weird, what the heck were they thinking not casting the chief engineer as a major permanent role??

Onward to Season 2: Holy heck season 2 has a different doctor I didn't even know ever existed! Also look transporter chief O'Brien has appeared as well as Whoopi Goldberg as bartender, a shuttle (never appears in season 1), and Riker's beard! They cruely tease Wesley Crusher's departure from the ship throughout episode S02E01 only to have him choose to stay at the end ughh.

Tags: media reviews, star trek

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