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"Is ST: Discovery any good?" Topic

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The Angry Piper05 Dec 2017 6:21 a.m. PST

I'm one of those folks who lives in the USA, so it's not on Netflix for me or I would have watched it already. I must admit when I heard Michelle Yeoh was putting on a captain's uniform, I was pretty psyched…but I'm not buying into a separate streaming service for one show, and I'm curious to know how people feel about it.

I haven't heard much about the show itself as here in the US, it seems to be mentioned only in the context of the whole Kevin Spacey sexual assault thing.


VCarter Supporting Member of TMP05 Dec 2017 6:35 a.m. PST

I have avoided STD (did they even think about the name) after the first show. No way I would pay to see it.

The Orville is the show I was expecting new Star Trek to be.

Norrins05 Dec 2017 6:55 a.m. PST

Good really is in the eye of the beholder!

Amongst my friends and colleagues the consensus seems to be that it is good. There's been a few moans about the redesign of the Klingons and how the technology bears little resemblance to the TOS.

If you've not seen Discovery and want some fairly unbiased reviews check this out – link

StarCruiser05 Dec 2017 7:09 a.m. PST

There's no such thing as an "unbiased review"…

Everyone is biased in some way or another, whether they realize it or not.

Captain Gideon Inactive Member05 Dec 2017 7:25 a.m. PST

I've seen all the episodes of STD and frankly I hate it.

The main problem is the Klingon's which they have ruined.

I can say more but I'll refrain for the time being.

dampfpanzerwagon Fezian05 Dec 2017 8:11 a.m. PST

I've watched all the first series that has been aired and thought they were great – I rather like the darker side shown by the new captain.

I have also seen some scathing reviews, but as stated, I've watched and enjoyed them all so far.


WarWizard05 Dec 2017 8:13 a.m. PST

I keep forgetting to watch this new series. I want to see if I will any interest in it.

I have been watching the Orville.
And after about the first 6 or so episodes I am kinda on the fence about it. It doesn't seem to be 100% comedy or 100% drama. It is a strange mix of the two.

The last episode I saw was the one about Doctor Finn and her two spoiled brats. I kept thinking this episode has to evolve into more than just that. But it didn't. Even using ISSAC in the episode didn't help, but he was the highlight though. After that I thought, do I really care enough about any of these characters to spend time watching more episodes? Probably not.

TGerritsen05 Dec 2017 8:25 a.m. PST


It definitely doesn't feel like Star Trek. It feels very much like Battlestar Galactica, which I enjoyed as a reboot of the original rather than a sequel.

STD wants its cake and to eat it. They claim up and down that the show is not a reboot, and fits right into canon. However, it simply isn't. Everything is different, the style, the feel, the behaviors. Had they simply admitted this, I would like it better. However, I simply can't do the mental math to retcon everything into the original canon.

The Klingons aren't just visually different, they are culturally very different. Michelle Yeoh is very good in the show, but only appears in the 2 hour opener. None of the characters is very likable. They are all deeply flawed to a point where you really don't like any of them.

It's very generic sci-fi. Lots of odd looking crewmen who don't look like any canon race and people with tech mods for no reason thrown in the background as set dressing.

Had it been something entirely original not set in the Star Trek universe, I could probably get into it, but the constant digs at canon are offputting.

There's constantly little things where they are practically screaming, 'Remember this from the original shows? Yeah, well screw you, it's different now! Take that!"

I don't know why they do that. There's really no reason for it.

However, like most things these days, the show runners dismiss any criticism as being from sexist racists who don't know any better. My issues with the show are not at all that there's a gay character or a female lead. It's that all of the characters are just such despicable people that you just can't empathize with them.

The only characters I like on the show are the Albino Klingon, the Alien First Officer on the Discovery, Michelle Yeoh (for as much as she was in it), and the very minor character who plays the gay doctor (who is in a relationship with the primary gay character that everyone claimed to be up in arms about- that character is a total tool on the show- I don't hate him because he's gay, I hate him because he's a whiny jerk).

The main character whom the show revolves around is supposed to have been raised in Vulcan society, but is emotional, angsty and makes dumb decisions left and right. I don't hate her because she's female, I hate her because she's an idiot.

So there you go. That's my .02. I want to like the show. I don't hate the show. Frankly the writing is a mixed bag with some very good and some just downright painful. None of it feels like a ship at war in space. It feels like angsty millennials 'IN SPAAAAAACE.'

I loved Battlestar Galactica and Caprica, both of which dealt with some hefty social issues, featured strong female and gay characters (and even polygamy in Caprica). This show includes those issues, but doesn't do so within a particularly interesting story arc and really screwed up their marketing by making those issues about virtue signaling rather than focusing a great story first. It also made the characters profoundly uninteresting. They are basically whatever label they are rather than rounded out characters. The mysterious, perhaps evil captain. The know it all, right at any cost female officer. The fish out of water, socially awkward female cadet. The gay engineer. The alien genetically evolved to sense life threatening danger. All those other people in the background. It's as if that's all the character arc anyone wrote for these characters and decided to leave it at that.

Star Trek always has dealt with dicey issues, but they were always focused on the story and character first, and those aspects were just part of that story.

The same supposed fascist homophobe racist misogynists who rejected STD have fully embraced Orville, which has featured actual gay sex, a race of all men (who thus can only marry and reproduce men- or do they?), transgenderism, alien and human sex, genocide and a host of other supposedly touch point issues, so I don't think the issue with STD is the topics, sex or orientation of the characters but rather how they went about promoting the show and the way they treated canon.

Anyway, I'd urge you to watch the first 4 episodes if you can find them (doesn't CBS have a free trial? You could log in, watch them, and then cancel if you want to see them free?) . Then make up your own mind.

I'll likely watch again next season to see if they can fix at least some of the the issues I have with it. Already folks are speculating that the universe of the first shows are taking place in some alternate universe. I think that's wishful thinking. We'll just have to see.

Shagnasty Supporting Member of TMP05 Dec 2017 8:30 a.m. PST

I watched the first show, didn't care for it and thus made no effort to pursue Netflix for more.

jfleisher Supporting Member of TMP05 Dec 2017 9:01 a.m. PST

That high frequency vibration we have all been feeling is Gene Roddenberry spinning in his grave…

That new "darker" captain? He violates everything Starfleet stands for.

Don't like it, I'd rather watch The Orville.

Mike Target05 Dec 2017 9:23 a.m. PST

couldnt stand it…

You can find a large pile of very scathing reviews of it here: . He does have a couple of good things to say about it. Not many though last time I checked.

In brief though- You know how in the original series the Enterprise was more or less entirely crewed by competent individuals? Guys and gals who knew their job and their duty and how to do it and do it well?

Well the Discovery isnt crewed by people like that…instead Discovery got the losers, the drop outs, the convicts and the frankly downright suicidaly stupid. And no this isnt an underdog story like Mystery Men or galaxy quest where with a bit of team work and pulling together they might just pull off a win, this is just a shipful of absolute morons flying around and making the galaxy a really shitty place for everyone.

skipper John Supporting Member of TMP05 Dec 2017 9:45 a.m. PST

Well, I really enjoyed it! Patiently awaiting the next session.

I think some of us need to watch one of those oldies with Shatner in it for some perspective.

USAFpilot05 Dec 2017 10:00 a.m. PST

No. I only watched the first episode and didn't like it. I liked all of the original and next generation Star Trek. DS9 was only ok and I hated Voyager. Never watched Enterprise.

Red358405 Dec 2017 10:03 a.m. PST

Looking at the comments it just shows that you can't please everyone!!

I really enjoyed it.

daler240D Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member05 Dec 2017 11:49 a.m. PST

It's very disappointing, silly actually. I watch The Orville now.

Black Hat Miniatures05 Dec 2017 12:07 p.m. PST

I have been enjoying it as well…


forrester05 Dec 2017 2:22 p.m. PST

I found it a reasonably compelling story, but struggled to reconcile it with the rest of the Star Trek canon. With the several previous spin-offs, I could readily accept them as coming from the same fictional universe.
Discovery just feels too different.
As a long term Doctor Who watcher, I'm well used to accepting change. So it's not just that.
I find it impossible to take on board the idea that somewhere else, Pike's Enterprise is cruising around. That's not just uniforms, it's a whole new technology and set of attitudes. Starfleet, but not as we know it

Klingons with subtitles is just daft and distracting; it puts a practical barrier to seeing them as characters.

Discovery isn't the only offender, but why do the bridges of starships need to be so HUGE? A captain would need a megaphone to say "Make it so".

PaddySinclair05 Dec 2017 2:26 p.m. PST

Series has been fantastic so far (a more even start than any of the previous series) but, yes, there are "issues" with some areas of visual continuity. Some of that might get addressed, but we'll just have to suck up the Klingon makeup change for now :(

There is a goodly chunk of people who are desperate to hate it at all costs, and will keep repeatedly tell you this "fact" despite not actually watching the episodes.

If you're outside the US, and have a Netflix subscription, then you've got nothing to lose in giving it a trial. If you don't have a Netflix sub, go for the free month over Christmas and give it a try (but binge on all the other goodies exclusive there on as well… "The Expanse" comes straight to mind, and obviously "Stranger Things" and the various Marvel series…).

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP05 Dec 2017 2:35 p.m. PST

I like it… specially the Captain… the last chapter show a Klingon female raping a Human officer… that's different in all ways…

I wait to see the 2nd part in January….

I still remember how great were the critics when "The next Generation" appeared… and then… became so good for so much people…


KniazSuvorov05 Dec 2017 3:27 p.m. PST

I liked it.

People who whine about how STD breaks "canon" or "continuity" haven't been paying attention. Trek has been retconned so often that "Star Trek canon" is practically an oxymoron.

Yes, there was some stylistic continuity through the TNG / DS9 / Voyager years, but even those series routinely changed pretty much whatever they wanted about the universe.

The unlikeable characters in Discovery, on the other hand, are a very real issue. I can only say that they become slightly less abrasive as the series goes on.

Cacique Caribe05 Dec 2017 3:37 p.m. PST

He he. He said STD. He he.


Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP05 Dec 2017 4:43 p.m. PST

Saw the pilot first part that was aired on CBS. I thought it was dreary, absurdly plotted, and flatly unbelievable. The characters were unlikeable or simply one-note cyphers, and were completely incompetent as military personnel of any sort (even if you accept the ridiculous assertion that Starfleet is not a military organization, when it obviously is). Stupid is as stupid does, and they "did stupid" in overabundance.

I was left with no desire to pay for any further viewing. Instead, I re-watched the original series. Even "The Gamesters of Triskelion" was more watchable than the pilot of STD.

I suppose I will be lumped into the "canon" group and have my opinion dismissed. Fine, whatever. But canon or no canon, my opinion is about what I saw, not about how it adhered to any canon. And what I saw was poorly written, poorly conceived, poorly directed, and poorly acted. Others may say it gets better, but I'm not inclined to pay either the money or the time to find out.

Micman Supporting Member of TMP05 Dec 2017 5:01 p.m. PST

Once CBS's streaming service fails and it is on regular TV or Netflix in the US I will watch it.

I was not impressed with the first episode. It felt like it was a post Voyager show and not pre-TOS.

Calico Bill05 Dec 2017 5:33 p.m. PST


Personal logo The Beast Rampant Supporting Member of TMP05 Dec 2017 7:09 p.m. PST

People who whine about how STD breaks "canon" or "continuity" haven't been paying attention. Trek has been retconned so often that "Star Trek canon" is practically an oxymoron.

Quite true. BUT, considering where this falls in the timeline, the new series could have attempted a fresh start, taking its baseline from TOS. A clean slate. Enterprise (for whatever idiot reason) couldn't be bothered to do so, and apparently, neither could this.

So, what we're left with is another series that cashes in on a time-honored (or at least broadly recognized) property, when I might as well have just been launched as a whole new series about people flying around in a spaceship. But we can't have that, can we? Lets have all our entertainment be made from 100% post-consumer materials.

PaddySinclair05 Dec 2017 11:05 p.m. PST

The Beast Rampant Wrote:

So, what we're left with is another series that cashes in on a time-honored (or at least broadly recognized) property, when I might as well have just been launched as a whole new series about people flying around in a spaceship. But we can't have that, can we? Lets have all our entertainment be made from 100% post-consumer materials.

Thing is I don't think Discovery would be as engaging (no pun intended) if it wasn't "Star Trek". You need to care about things such as who and what Sarek is, who the Klingons and Starfleet are and exactly and why mutiny in Starfleet is such a big thing, and why the development of a new drive system is a really big thing, especially when it doesn't seem to be present after all of this…

Despite the appearances of the Klingons, they are the most Klingony Klingons we've had since TNG started diluting the "bad guy" aspect of the Klingons and "just" made them bumpy headed space Vikings. Their language usage is also satisfying, as is evidenced by the subtitles which are a direct translation of the Klingon spoken, but the word usage is often not what you'd expect in English.

The visual and stylistic changes compared to TOS are completely understandable – you can't make TV like TOS anymore for a mainstream audience, and that is what Discovery is aimed at. The look of TOS is somewhat lame by modern standards, and it is replete with "technology" that the modern world has superseded.

The holo-communications thing is their gimme. Whilst they acknowledged it's tech that really shouldn't be in use at this point in the timeline, the production staff have stated that long distance communications work better for filming and composition purposes if the actors can work off of a live actor rather than a green screen, and you're not endlessly doing cut shots between ship's screen – reaction shot of our crew – ship's screen – etc.

I suspect the holo-displays also are there to make the expositionary display pointing scenes that Star Trek has always had a little bit more intesting in that you can shoot the actors through the screen rather than over their shoulders.

There's some explanation in the first tie in novel (which was apparently there at the behest of exec producer Bryon Fuller) of some of the differences which we see between Pike's Enterprise and crew, and the look of Discovery, but we'll have to wait and see if that is ever brought to screen in this series. It is however interesting to note that the bridge of Discovery has quiet a few design cues (particularly in its colour scheme) from the bridge of Pike's Enterprise (before it all got a bit colourful in TOS proper).

Mike Target06 Dec 2017 2:17 a.m. PST

In fact I'd say that discovery would work much better if it were written as an offshoot of BSG or the Expanse (after all it has almost all the actors anyway), or a whole bunch of others- it would clear up a lot of nonsense right off the bat! For example the crew of discovery make stupid pigheaded decisions constantly and have no respect for anything that resembles a chain of command- In Starfleet thats ridiculous, but it would be practically mandatory on BSG, simply due to the desperation level of the crew. Can you imagine anyone pulling a gun on Kirk without being possessed by an alien first or having godlike powers (cos he'll need them!)? Or Janeway? Of course not: the stupid mutineer would be getting his ass handed to him all around the ship for a fortnight…but on galactica with the survival of the entire human race at stake it might just be worth it.

Discovery is in entirely the wrong universe.

And as I started watch discovery I also started rewatching TOS…and TOS is much better.

PaddySinclair06 Dec 2017 2:58 a.m. PST

Er, wasn't the mutineer the one the CAPTAIN (not of the Discovery at that point) pulled the phaser on before clapping her in irons? Because, you know, she violated the chain of command etc?

Mike Target06 Dec 2017 3:44 a.m. PST

yes but then they made up and went for a day out to see the klingons together…

Personal logo The Beast Rampant Supporting Member of TMP06 Dec 2017 10:40 a.m. PST

Thing is I don't think Discovery would be as engaging (no pun intended) if it wasn't "Star Trek"

Well, there you go, then. grin

The visual and stylistic changes compared to TOS are completely understandable you can't make TV like TOS anymore for a mainstream audience, and that is what Discovery is aimed at. The look of TOS is somewhat lame by modern standards, and it is replete with "technology" that the modern world has superseded.

Yes, but that is where the artistry and creativity comes in. "Retro" is popular, and can be made "cool", it just takes someone with a vision. I would never consider a "straight up" prequel to be a good idea, anyway. Besides, Next Gen was (I would think to some degree) made with fans of TOS in mind, but with each passing year, more ST fans cut their teeth on later and later series'. Such is the way of things. How much consideration did the creators of STD give the fans of TOS in the first place? Probably didn't even enter their minds.

This reminds me of the Trekkie episode of CSI…

PaddySinclair06 Dec 2017 3:14 p.m. PST

yes but then they made up and went for a day out to see the klingons together…

Hardly. Circumstances had changed somewhat in the intervening time. Burnham's mutiny was motivated by trying to stop the situation escalating, which it had done all by itself after she was locked in the brig, which no longer existed… The ship was crippled, vulnerable. At that point you use any and all resources at your disposal. Burnham still gets court-martialled after this.

Usrivoy307 Dec 2017 9:14 a.m. PST

They warned us about that stuff back in the 80's….

Gunfreak Supporting Member of TMP07 Dec 2017 11:53 a.m. PST

It isn't Star Trek.

SITZKRIEG08 Dec 2017 10:35 p.m. PST

I'm not a fan. I watched the first three episodes (for free luckily) and that was enough for me. It isn't just that I didn't like the designs or characters (which I didn't) but moreso that this is effectively a reboot yet the creators lied about it so they could initially have their cake (new fans) and eat it too (not instantly turning off existing fans) while at the same time taking the unprecedented step of charging for a trek show. I'm not a huge fan of the JJverse movies but I appreciated their honesty and saw every movie in the theatres once. If CBS wants to lie about what they're charging fans for then they won't make a dime ever from me with DSC.

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