Joined: Mon Oct 11, 2010 10:13 am Posts: 4948 Location: Seattle
Vote for your favorite series in the poll, then rank them from most to least favorite. Let's be real, no The Animated Series or Phase II
1) DSN (awesome show. Some of the best title music of which I'm aware. Great overall storyline. Some of the best individual episodes of the entire Star Trek collection) 2) TNG (friggin Picard, man. He alone would make the show, but there's so much more. This is a pretty close #2 for me.) 3) TOS (more because of its "greatness" than because I actually like watching it. I find it to be poorly aged and melodramatic, but that's robbing it of the context of the time in which it was made. It's difficult to separate out what they accomplished in the post-series movies, some of which were fantastic.) 4) Enterprise (much better than it gets credit for, but not great. The worst title music to any show of which I can think. You go in expecting some Holst-like expansive space music and instead you get some hokey R&B shit) 5) Voyager (sucks, that's all it gets)
Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2011 4:36 pm Posts: 541 Location: Lake of Fire
Back when the Original was new, I was obligated to hate it, because my two friends loved it and used to talk about it all the time. (Me being the rebel of the group.) Much later, I got into watching the rerun Originals, and have acquired a strange fondness for it, but don't love it.
Never payed much attention to any of the others. Voted original, but can't apply rank to the rest.
So hard to choose between TNG and DS9. TNG was the show that really made me a Trekker, and IMO had the best leads. TNG has the best peak episodes, but also has a good number of stinkers. DS9 has few stinkers, and while fewer episodes are great, that's partly because it was much more serialized, and it had great ongoing storylines. It also had one of the best, deepest supporting casts of any series, ever. Also, I've just seen the TNG episodes so much more because they've been rerun more. I guess I'll go DS9, but it's very close.
TOS is good, Voyager was mostly crap, and I never really tried Enterprise (or the animated series, for that matter).
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 7:55 pm Posts: 18811 Location: The Capital of the Free World
TNG - Best replicated what made the original great and expanded upon it.
DS9 - The most intricate plots, for better or for worse. Excellent addition to the mythology. Some sloppy writing here and there made for some disjointed episodes (some of my complaints are nitpicks).
TOS - Best chemistry between cast members. Set a great standard and established the universe. Some very mediocre episodes, but the highlights rival the rest. If only it lasted longer (and the third season was better).
Enterprise - When it wanted to be a Star Trek show, it was pretty good. When it was trying to be Babylon 5 within the Star Trek universe, it was pretty weak. Played fast and loose with continuity, but there's time travel, so it gets a pass. At best, it was a weaker version of DS9, though, and prequels are inherently problematic when they're dedicated to explaining stuff.
Voyager - Boring techno babble. It had a few good moments. That said, it basically ruined the Borg. It also wasted a wonderful opportunity of exploring Federation-Maquis dynamic.
Joined: Thu Dec 09, 2010 8:42 pm Posts: 3441 Location: Big sun comin strong through the motel blinds
Never watched these shows, but bbc plays a lot of tng apparently and I've watched a handful of eps the last few days. Pretty lost plot wise but it's just so easy to watch/have on in the background. Also I pretend the personal junk I've been dealin with is a side story of an episode and slowly but surely the crew helps me figure out/overcome my problems by the end. Also x2 goes without saying I'm sure but Picard, what a g.
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 7:55 pm Posts: 18811 Location: The Capital of the Free World
My rankings of the movies. There are spoilers.
10. The Final Frontier - I watched this movie once and it was such a confusing mess that I try to forget it exists. In the interest of intellectual honesty, I should re-watched it and give it a proper review. In the interest of my sanity, I will not. I remember the Enterprise crew journey to the center of the galaxy to find God. God turns out to not be God, but an alien. Also, a huge dick. The original series did the "Enterprise crew meets God" concept so many times and so much better. Shatner directs. I don't think Spielberg could have saved this script. I guess Kirk asking, "What does God need with a starship" is a good moment. Thank the Entity on Sha Ka Ree that this wasn't the final film with the original crew.
9. Nemesis - Star Trek: Cocktease. We were promised a great villain equal to Khan. It was hinted we'd see Lore, but instead, we got Spock's Brain. Sure, they gave us a Picard clone (who was bald for some reason--played by skinny Tom Hardy). I'm a little weirded out by the vague scientific racism behind a plot device of the white man arrives with the slaves, he becomes their leader and leads an uprising that takes over the Romulan Star Empire, but the movie has way more flaws than that. I was crushed when Data died. Brent Spiner didn't want to keep playing an ageless person. There was an episode that said that Data's android skin was designed to age like a person (probably so the show didn't have to spend it's entire budget on makeup to cover wrinkles), but that was never really applied and there were many instances where it clearly didn't age. It was also a noble sacrifice akin to Spock in Khan, but it's wasted on this terrible movie. His memories are transferred to B-4, but B-4 is annoying. I guess it doesn't matter since this movie killed both Data and the Next Generation franchise. It's a shame, because the Romulans are really cool and the Remans were a nice touch (though I'm not sure how they were both slaves and had the better Warbird). There was a proposed sequel that would have been the definitive end of the show. I wish I could watch that instead.
8. Insurrection - Arguably the most pointless of the Star Trek movies. The plot is fine and could have made a fine episode--there's a blood feud between two people, one warlike and the other peaceful. In this case, the Federation forms an unholy alliance with the warlike people because the technology will help them in their war. It's the kind of plot Roddenberry would have hated, but it's also the kind of plot needed to turn an episode into the movie. The writers were victims of First Contact's success--they can't top the borg as a villain, so they created a different kind of movie. They also wanted it to be light and fun to counter how heavy First Contact was. But it also needed to be an action movie and the script doesn't really let "light and fun" shine. The insurrection is Picard disobeying orders to protect the planet. In the show, the Federation would never have willingly done this and Picard would have solved the problem by being clever and awesome. In the movie, he kicks people. Meh.
7. The Motion Picture - There's no question that this movie is a mess. Part of the problem is that it's turning a pilot into a movie--what worked for Muholland Dr would not work for Star Trek. The appeal of the film is to see the original characters once again, so naturally we feel nothing for the new people. The film's plot is fine. It relies heavily on the "getting the band back together" trope, which is ok for turning a tv show into a movie--not great, ok; it makes for a weaker film, but it's good for fans. The antagonist is very Star Treky-y. Thar be spoilers here, but it's not a good enough movie to justify anyone reading this getting upset. Basically, the Voyager probe, which was sent with the mission to learn everything, gets modified by cybernetic aliens to help it with its mission and it eventually learns enough things to become sentient. When it knows everything, it gets depressed and wants to find its creator in the hopes that that will give it fulfillment. The philosophy is fine, the logic almost works (Voyager became V'Ger, really?), and it reminds me a bit of Frankenstein's monster, except the creator never rejects the creation (being long dead). As a stand-alone movie, it's not that good, but it's fine as a movie that transitions a prematurely cancelled TV show into a movie series.
6. Generations - For a movie that was largely intended to serve as a bridge between the Next Generation TV show and the movies and between the original series and The Next Generation, it's not that bad as a stand-alone movie. It's flaws are really obvious--a forgettable villain being one of the main ones. But considering how hit-and-miss the Star Trek series is, I think that's excusable. The Nexus is a really cool concept and it has shifted how I think of eternity. Kirk dies. I put it like that because I forgot he died. Ridiculously anticlimactic. But costume designers couldn't keep designing 12 different shirts for Shatner's varying stomach. Picard-Guinan interactions are always wonderful. Data-Georgi interactions as well as Pinocchio gradually becomes human. The cast of the Next Generation took longer to gel than the original cast, but they were great at that point. Oh, and the Enterprise blows up. Technically two enterprises blow up. I guess this was an homage to Search for Spock. Or maybe they wanted to show off a cool new ship. The Enterprise E looks cool.
5. The Search for Spock - Kirk and crew descend into Hades to bring Spock back to life. At least that's the film in a nutshell. For a film that undoes the heroic sacrifice of The Wrath of Khan, it could be a lot worse. Kirk loses his son and his ship to retrieve his friend. The fight scenes with the klingons are very good. Kirk luring the klingons onto the Enterprise and destroying it is quite cold, but he really hates klingons. Plus, they didn't really have a choice. Nimoy directed and would have never returned to Star Trek if he didn't. In short, Jerry's right and Kramer wrong, but Search for Spock was still one of the better Star Trek movies, evens-odds rule be damned.
4. The Voyage Home - In which the Enterprise crew takes a Klingon Bird of Prey back in time to save the whales. Well, not quite. Star Trek takes a conscious environmental message and Spock basically says, "Fuck you for thinking humans are the only intelligent creatures on Earth." The movie takes the alien probe that's going to destroy Earth from the first movie and makes it make more sense. It's the lightest, fluffiest Star Trek movie, but it really works because it emphasizes the chemistry of the cast. This was definitely one of my favorites as a kid, despite not having much to do with space, aliens, or the future. Trivia: Eddie Murphy wanted to be in the movie and they wrote a Marine biologist character for him. However, Murphy wanted to be an alien or a Starfleet officer and declined the role. He later regretted it. Trivia 2: This was the first Star Trek movie shown in the Soviet Union, foreshadowing the Khitomer Accords.
3. First Contact - This is generally regarded as the favorite of people who aren't Star Trek fans. In general, I think it's because it doesn't really feel like a Star Trek film. Well, the Earth stuff does, but the spaceship does not. The movie took one of the most interesting villains to ever appear on screen and created a zombie movie. It cheapens what was created on the show, but it didn't ruin the borg--that would be Voyager's job. It does make for an awesome action movie, though. Picard fucking hates the borg (with good reason). Patrick Stewart is fantastic playing Picard. Geordi-Data are always good together. We also get Zefram Cochrane as the flawed, brilliant scientist. The interactions between future people and way in the future people are done very well. Cochrane is much taller than his original series version, but he's also way more interesting and that episode sucked. This is the definitive version to me. The depiction of first contact is also wonderful for Star Trek geeks like me. I'd rather watch that scene than the entirety of Close Encounter. Also, Data has great lines.
2. The Undiscovered Country - It is December, 1991. It is two years after the fall of the Berlin wall, one year after the dissolution of the Soviet Union began and mere weeks before the USSR ceases to be. It is also a year after Yesterday's Enterprise aired on the Next Generation and the original crew isn't going to let these upstarts (especially the nobodys of the Enterprise C crew) tell the story of how the Cold War (I mean the Federation-Klingon one, not that Earth one; that happened centuries ago, obviously) ended. So, in December 1991, The Undiscovered Country premiers. As an IR nerd that viewed Star Trek as essentially the Foreign Service of the future, I love this movie. As a kid, I also loved this movie. Kirk fucking hates Klingons. The Klingons have spent too much money on military and an environmental disaster means they have a choice--peace or death. Anyway, there are always reactionaries who oppose peace and Chancellor Gorkon is assassinated and Kirk framed. He is sentenced to a gulag in Sibera--err... I mean Rura Penthe. Anyway, the impeccable Mr. Spock proves Kirk innocent, Kirk and Bones escape from an inescapable prison, and an assassination attempt is foiled. Peace is declared. I think this is the second best Star Trek movie and captures the best big screen feel with the possible exception of Wrath of Khan.
1. The Wrath of Khan - It seems hard to imagine making a better Star Trek movie about this. The opening--the no win Kobayashi Maru scenario--is dramatic and actually important to the movie. The villain (Khan, if you haven't guessed) is perfect. In the original series, he represented science gone too far. In the movie, he's still that, but he is also really pissed off and wants revenge. He's menacing and pretty genuine. Spock's sacrifice at the end is heartbreaking and his funeral scene is why I decided to make this list. Nimoy intended this to be the last Star Trek movie and it would have been fine if it was. But it was not to be. Star Trek could never top this on the big screen.
I'm not ranking the reboots. But "Star Trek" is around the level of 6/7, I guess.
Last edited by pgm on Sat Feb 28, 2015 7:11 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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