Could the new LOWER DECKS be the STAR TREK series fans have been waiting for?

Get ready for an, ahem, animated discussion…and probably a whole bunch of really angry response comments!

These days, if a new Star Trek series from CBS All Access debuts to universal or near-universal acclaim, then it’s probably premiering in a different universe! In THIS universe, Trek fans are an infamously hard-to-please/easy-to-piss-off mob with social media pitchforks and YouTube podcast torches.

I know; I’ve been one of them…kinda.

Granted, I’ve probably kept more of an open mind than many, and with the exception of the last two episodes of the first season of PICARD, I actually really enjoyed that series. But you guys know how critical I was of DISCOVERY‘s first season—and season two, while significantly better, didn’t completely escape my blogs of shame!

And so, like many fans, I reacted to details about the new STAR TREK: LOWER DECKS series (debuting next month) with some serious trepidation…although still trying very hard to keep an open mind. It hasn’t been easy. The very concept of the new series scared the crap out of me!

I mean…an animated comedy???

Star Trek has survived being animated before. The 22 episodes from Filmation in 1973-74 had a few true gems (“Yesteryear” and “The Slaver Weapon”) and some major klunkers (“The Infinite Vulcan”). But it was generally a well-executed series. As for comedy Trek, episodes like “The Trouble with Tribbles,” “A Piece of the Action,” and movies like Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home showed that you could certainly add a bit of comedic flair to Trek and get a pretty decent result.

Don’t say that Star Trek can’t be funny!

But could an animated series designed purposefully for non-stop gags and punchlines still work as Star Trek? Would fans accept such a tongue-in-cheek approach to a universe that we’ve dearly cherished and believed in for all these decades?

Well, CBS (now VCBS, I guess) and ALEX KURTZMAN have decided to find out—and I suppose we will, too, on August 6…and more likely on August 7 when the fannish mob once again takes to social media to make their opinions known (probably quite loudly).

But I am going to go out on a limb and say that, in my gut, we fans might just be getting the Star Trek we’ve been demanding for so long now from both CBS and Paramount!

Before diving into my reasons for that bold prediction, however, if you haven’t seen the latest trailer yet (released on July 12), then please have a look…

Also, a short scene from the first episode was just released yesterday…

And now, let’s cry “Havoc” and let those dogs of war slip a little…


WILL THE FARCE BE WITH THEM?

When I initially heard about this show, my first horrified thought was, “Oh, please, don’t let it be Teen Titans Go!” Don’t get me wrong; I enjoy that show. But it’s total farce. The otherwise proud and impressive superhero group that I fell in love with during the 80s and 90s has been reduced to nothing but silly and offbeat gags and foolish characters. There’s enough other superhero cartoons out there right now that a series like Teen Titans Go! is a pleasant diversion. But with Star Trek, having one-third (or one-fourth?) of all the series being farcical just felt cringe-worthy.

Then I heard that the head writer of Adult Swim’s Rick and Morty, MIKE McMAHAN, was creating Lower Decks and…well…I didn’t quite cringe so much as go, “Hmmmmm…” If you’ve never watched Rick and Morty, you can click on this link, but be warned! It’s totally PG-13 (possibly worse sometimes) and not everyone’s cup of tea. The best analogy I can come up with is imagine Doc Brown from Back to the Future as an obnoxious, alcoholic, nihilistic, self-absorbed, sociopath with a really bad attitude and dysfunctional family life. Or imagine The Doctor as a complete a-hole loser who, instead of loving humanity and wanting to save people every week just really doesn’t give a $#&! and goes around telling everyone off just because he’s bored and he feels like it.

So, um, yeah. This is the writer creating Lower Decks.

But before you cancel your subscription to All Access (or decide never to subscribe again…or ever), let me just say the following without hesitation:

I THINK THAT RICK AND MORTY IS A REALLY GOOD SHOW!!!

Don’t ask me to explain it. I can’t really explain why I loved Ren and Stimpy either. But Rick and Morty actually won the 2018 Emmy for Outstanding Animated Program. The show is really quite brilliant, and once you get past the fact that the main character is the biggest, most repugnant (and smartest) jerk you will ever not want to meet, there’s just this amazing honesty to the show. Oh, and it’s totally sci-fi, so we geeks and nerds have something to love.

Anyway, rather than being a deal-breaker, the Rick and Morty connection actually intrigues me. While I’m sure that some (possibly many) Trek fans won’t appreciate that kind of comedic approach (it’s VERY British, by the way, even though it’s an American series), the show is still high quality and brilliantly written. Lower Decks might seem dumb to some, but I suspect/hope that it’s actually going to be an extremely intelligently-written satire like Rick and Morty…not a farce like Teen Titans Go. If so, then that brings us to the most important question…

WILL IT BE STAR TREK?

Will it be even better than CATS?

Mike McMahan is absolutely a Trek fan. How do we know? (After all, anyone can SAY they’re a fan.) Well, first of all, the chief medical officer of the USS Cerritos, Dr. T’ana, is a Caitian! That’s the cat-race from the original animated series that included Lt. M’Ress and the furry admiral from Star Trek IV. Fans love Caitians because, well, who doesn’t love cats (other than dog people)?

But if you want more proof, do you see those uniforms with the Star Trek II-ish flaps on a Next Gen-ish tunic? That was actually a design originally intended for Star Trek Generations…a merging of the two uniform styles (TWOK and TNG) that the filmmakers asked costumer ROBERT BLACKMAN to create. At the last minute, they decided to go with the TNG and DS9 designs instead, but toymaker Playmates never got the memo and released these action figures in 1994 (look from 17 to 22 seconds)…

Mike was aware of those unused uniform designs and wanted to purposefully use them. Were YOU aware of those unused designs? I wasn’t. So in my book, I’m calling him a fan…and a pretty obsessed one, at that!

But don’t take my word for it. Look at that trailer again. This LOOKS like the Star Trek we know! Set a year after Star Trek: Nemesis and five years before the destruction of Romulus and the Synth attack on Mars, Lower Decks is an era that we fans are very familiar and comfortable with…and so it’s incredibly important that this new series match what we already know.

This was, perhaps, the greatest flaw in Discovery. Of everything that bothered fans about that show, the complete and total visual disparity between Discovery and TOS was a bridge too far. (Sorry, bad pun.) Sure, the technology wasn’t going to be rainbow-colored gumdrop buttons and switches, but those uniforms…nothing at all like TOS. And don’t get me (or anyone) started on the Klingons! Even CBS realized the mistake and brought in the more familiar bright-colored tunics with the black collars for part of season two, gave the Klingons hair, and made the USS Enterprise interior look just a little more like TOS (not much, but at least a little).

And while Picard hewed more closely to the Star Trek that we knew in terms of characters and little visual elements here and there, it nevertheless felt like a very different kind of Star Trek. It didn’t take place on a starship. The “captain” was in his twilight years and not the man he once was. The ship (barely more than a large shuttle) was full of damaged misfits. It was a great show (I thought), but not Star Trek as we knew it.

And J.J. Abrams’ version of Star Trek, well, that pretty much missed the mark entirely…unless you want your Star Trek with a quintuple shot of espresso followed by a six-pack of Jolt!

The Orville, now THAT was Star Trek as we knew it (only with penis jokes). And fans have been clamoring for CBS to just give us more of that. No need for “darker and grittier” and “more epic.” We like what we like. Hopefully, STRANGE NEW WORLDS will give us something a little closer to what we wanted all along: good, honest, optimistic Star Trek.

But Lower Decks…that definitely has some potential. And at least visually, it’s a closer match to established Trek than anything we’ve seen from CBS or Paramount in a long time. Sure, the USS Cerritos isn’t the most attractive starship design ever (not sure it was supposed to be), and that uniform style will only exist for about five years before it’s replaced by the snazzy uniforms from the Picard flashback with Raffi. But Lower Decks has LCARS displays and a Type 8 shuttlecraft like they had on Voyager and dustbuster phaser designs, and holodecks and corridors and Orions and Bolians that we know and love.

So, put a check box on the Lower Decks report card under”visual design.”

BUT WHAT ABOUT THE CHARACTERS?

Racial diversity…light skin, dark skin, green skin, purple hair!

Back during TNG‘s final season, an episode titled “Lower Decks” took a big chance and became a fan favorite. The story centered on four junior officers hoping for a promotion after their latest evaluations. The episode starts off whimsically but slowly turns more serious and ends tragically. Along the way, the viewer sees the main characters—Picard, Worf, La Forge, Dr. Crusher, etc.—from a new perspective. This episode isn’t about any of them; it’s about the four junior officers…each of whom we begin to care about almost as deeply as we do the command officers.

Junior officers have always intrigued fans because, unlike the main characters, they often had more noticeable and significant shortcomings than our “heroes.” TOS’s Lt. Bailey was hot-headed. Lt. Stiles was bigoted. Lt. Kevin Riley wouldn’t stop singing “I’ll Take You Home Again, Kathleen.” Ensign Garrovick wallowed in self-pity. TNG‘s Lt. Reg Barclay suffered from insecurity and just about every phobia you could imagine…and the list goes on (including most of the supporting characters on Deep Space Nine along with Lon Suder, Samantha Wildman, and Seska on Voyager).

All of this is to say that the concept of devoting an entire series to flawed-but-well-meaning (or not so well-meaning ) junior officers hoping to jumpstart their careers—wanting to be noticed but all-too-often kept completely out of the loop—such a series has been an untapped potential for Star Trek for 54 years and certainly since the “Lower Decks” episode of Next Gen 26 years ago.

Anyone complaining that these characters on Lower Decks act like idiots just doesn’t get it. They’re not supposed to be pure paragons of perfection. They’re starting out at the bottom of the ladder just like any Starfleet Academy graduate…with no real experience yet to draw from. I’m expecting that these characters will steadily grow and get less idiotic as the show progresses. Not that I ever expect Lower Decks to lose the humor, but I’m hoping that the jokes and gags will evolve along with the characters.

And what if they don’t grow and develop? Then I suppose I’ll either love the show despite that because it’s just so good or else the jokes will start falling increasingly flat and I’ll stop watching in disappointment, frustration, or disgust…depending on how bad it gets. But at least for now, I’m willing to give it the benefit of the doubt.

BUT HERE’S THE MOST IMPORTANT REASON THAT THIS SHOW MIGHT BE THE STAR TREK WE’VE BEEN WAITING FOR…

Banter.

My long-time readers know it’s one of my most frequent complaints about CBS-produced Star Trek: not enough character banter. Clever and humorous banter serves to not only develop a character but also helps to humanize them and make them easier for the audience to connect with.

Take away the graveyard scene from Hamlet and the main character is just moping and making long speeches to himself the whole time. But when he matches wits with the sarcastic gravedigger, we get an insight into the young Danish prince that doesn’t appear in all the “To be or not to be…?” soliloquies and poetic protestations anywhere else in the play. Or, if you’re not into Shakespeare, then just imagine Spock and McCoy without the banter about the Vulcan’s green blood or Spock considering that McCoy’s comparing him a computer is a compliment.

Banter is something sorely lacking from nearly the entire first season of Discovery. On the other hand, in season two, Pike had banter in many of his scenes, and look how much we all love him. Burnham is the character with some of the least banter—except a bit with Pike and her adopted brother Spock—and look at how the audience doesn’t really connect with her. But in general, the characters on Discovery feel mostly flat (except Tilly, although she doesn’t have banter so much as serve as the court jester).

The banter in Picard is quite a bit better, and those characters are more fully developed in general. Of course, those Picard characters can be so intense and morose and damaged that the banter is almost necessary so that we don’t just reject them all as unlikeable.

But from the trailer, it looks like character banter is going to saturate Lower Decks, which isn’t surprising. After all, banter means laughs, and this is a comedy, after all. But in so doing, these characters will likely be lighter, more humorous, more colorful, and more human (even the aliens) than most of what we’ve seen on Star Trek in recent series and movies.

And if you think about it, Star Trek has always been most successful when it provides hope and lightness and color (always color!) to make us feel like the future is bright. Discovery ultimately failed miserably at this (hopeless most of the time, dark, and monochromatic). Picard started course-correcting a bit. But Lower Decks…this one is bright and hopeful and ridiculously and refreshingly colorful (literally!). I don’t know about all of you, but after subdued palettes since the launch of Star Trek: Enterprise (not counting JJ Trek), I am ready for some saturated reds, yellows, and blues again!

Not only that, but the characters look to have personalities as colorful as their uniforms and skin (and hair!). Yeah, I know they’re probably gonna behave like idiots from time to time, get drunk, swing bat’leths indiscriminately, and almost dismember their fellow crewmates. But hey, we put up with Reginald Barclay. Ezri Dax had her foibles. Tom Paris got into trouble enough times to get demoted. And don’t even get me started on Tilly and F-bombs! At least give these new guys a chance.

Most of all, though, I’m just intrigued at the concept of this show being something fresh and new while also grounded in the Star Trek mythos. I’m curious to see what happens with a SECOND contact after the first contact. I’m eager to see what life is like on a starship that isn’t the flagship of the Federation or on the font lines of a galactic war or the lone Starfleet vessel trapped in the delta quadrant. I want to get to know these new characters a little better.

Or the show could suck.

But once again, I’m going into this with an open mind. I’ll be restarting my subscription to All Access in two weeks, and I’ll probably even post a few review editorials. So feel free to tell me that I’m completely wrong now…or else wait a short bit and then you can provide specific examples of why I’m wrong. I’m fine either way.

34 thoughts on “Could the new LOWER DECKS be the STAR TREK series fans have been waiting for?”

  1. I’m willing to give it a go. The trailer and the first look preview made me laugh, and that’s pretty much all I ask for in a comedy.

    The characters are just kids fresh out of the Academy. So wet behind the ears, it rains when they listen hard.

  2. This quote from your post does not sell this series for me:

    “The best analogy I can come up with is imagine Doc Brown from Back to the Future as an obnoxious, alcoholic, nihilistic, self-absorbed, sociopath with a really bad attitude and dysfunctional family life. Or imagine The Doctor as a complete a-hole loser who, instead of loving humanity and wanting to save people every week just really doesn’t give a $#&! and goes around telling everyone off just because he’s bored and he feels like it.”

    The promos haven’t either.

    Star trek, with a (little) bit of sprinkled wittiness and “targeted” humor, or word play, is good if well placed and timed. “Childish”, “slapstick” humour belongs with the three stooges where “campy” is what the point is.

    Star Trek is meant to be a generally serious reflection of the human condition but with Starfleet as the “ideal” and the surrounding situation a subtle, sometimes not, look into society and making a statement (also, not necessarily in a subtle manner–but, not knock you over the head with a club).

    In the pieces of ST:LD I have not seen this underlying premise that is the core of Star Trek. Perhaps I’ll be proven wrong; but, with the track record of CBS/Viacom since 2009, I am not holding out too much hope.

    1. Well, keep in mind that Lower Decks isn’t LITERALLY Rick and Morty. I doubt there’s any character on any show quite like Rick Sanchez.

      Now, let me put out a thought. If you’ve ever watched a TV sitcom like “The Office,” you know the characters on there are completely over the top. Michael Scott, were he real, would never have survived at any company in a management position as long as he did. The man was a walking HR nuclear blast. But the show was funny and “realistic” because we all know someone like that–or someone like each of the other characters–in office jobs that we worked in.

      LD is kinda like that…putting people like us and people we know onto a starship and asking “What if?” And if it works, it could be another “Office” or “Seinfeld” or “Orville.” And if it doesn’t work, it could be another “Cop Rock.” We’ll just have to see, but I’m keeping an open (and hopeful) mind for now.

  3. I’m sorry, I know we’ve disagreed before but this time you’re wrong. Having funny in Star Trek is great and expected but stupid is not. Too many of the jokes in the trailer seem to be designed to make the crew look stupid and basically unqualified to be in Starfleet. I would have thought that even in a secondary ship of the line that their Star Fleet training would be extreme. (My opinion is that someone is trying for the Orville vibe)
    Also, I don’t understand who this show is aimed at. Old folk like me? I don’t think so. (I love cartoons but do most Boomers?)
    Millennials ? I can’t see them being interested.
    As to children, I’d have to think twice to let my 7 &9 year old grandboys even watch it but when I had them watch the trailer, the first thing they said was “Do we have to watch more?
    Although like everything Star Trek I plan to watch it!

    1. “I’m sorry, I know we’ve disagreed before but this time you’re wrong.”

      Best opening line of an argument EVER! I need to get that put on a T-shirt, Edward. (That and “Cognitively there.”) 🙂

      1. So no real answer. I tried to be respectful to a person I don’t particularly respect

        1. I didn’t know you were looking for an answer for something. Your only question was about target audience, and that seemed to be rhetorical. What’s the question you’d like answered, Edward?

          1. How and why is stupid considered am alternative to funny? Also, maybe I wasn’t clear, but isn’t Starfleet supposed to have rigorous Training for all members?

          2. So does Cornell University…or so they told me. I knew some very smart and capable people when I went there but also some real idiots (like the druggie who lived in the dorm room next to mine freshman year). In general, the best of Starfleet Academy get the best assignments to ships like the Enterprise. But not everyone can be the best of the best. And hey, Reg Barclay graduated from Starfleet Academy, too, and look what a mess he was! (On the other hand, he did get assigned to the Federation’s flagship. Maybe that was a weak year for graduates.) 🙂

  4. “I think I heard Dr. McCoy tell Captain Kirk sometime “Beware of Romulans bearing gifts”.

    I apply my translation to these times : “Beware of “Secret Hideout” bearing gifts”,,,
    After three seasons, which was the most disappointing for me, I reserve the right to be apprehensive with everything that takes the approval of this management team.

      1. Something that I cannot forgive is that they have killed the illusion with which I received the news of a new series Trek ,,, now at best I feel apprehension, doubts, and a certain fear of seeing that part of what I like is going to break ,,,, I long for that carefree illusion of before, that intrinsic trust that the previous teams earned, strangers that seemed to me their initial approaches, I had the certainty in my inner life that everything would fall into place, and I was rarely disappointed. Now I can only imagine with fear what kind of mental gymnastics or dialectical tricks I will have to do so that what I am presented does not distort too much a universe of fiction that I love, (perhaps in excess) ,,, so I do not forgive this team that they have changed the “illusion” for the “uncertainty”.

        1. But think about it, Patricia: what sci-fi franchise hasn’t suffered from that same thing recently (other than Marvel)?

          Star Wars? Total apprehension. And well-founded for Eps 7-9 and slightly for Solo. Totally not justified for The Mandalorian.

          Battlestar Galactica? We had our doubts back with the launch of the reboot (a FEMALE Starbuck???), and most of us ended up loving it. Now there’s gonna be ANOTHER re-reboot? Apprehension time again!

          Terminator? Sheesh, they should have stopped at two…maybe three.

          DC superheroes movies always leave me wondering: will this finally be the “good” one? Wonder Woman and Aquaman were sorta the answer I’d been waiting for. Maybe Shazam. The rest? Phooey!

          Each new regeneration of Doctor Who since Matt Smith took on the role was met with apprehension. Remember when people thought Matt was way too young? Then people weren’t sure that Peter Capaldi’s surly Doctor would work. And then…the Doctor is now a female????

          And if they suddenly announced a new Stargate series, I wouldn’t be too certain there, either. Too many trips to the well, perhaps?

          Anyway, the point is that Star Trek isn’t alone in giving fans those “I’ve got a bad feeling about this” moments in the pits of our stomachs. Sometimes our guts are right, and sometimes they’re wrong, but these days, they’re never silent! 🙂

          1. In Spain we have a saying “Bad of many, consolation of fools”, if the only consolation for a loss is that it happens to everyone else it is also a poor consolation. Maybe it’s the sign of the times or maybe I’m too old to accept it without a (useless and resigned) complaint

          2. I’m not arguing that it’s a good thing, Patricia…only that it’s happening we increasing frequency. Now, I have a theory as to why, and it’s not simply that the Internet has allowed fans to become toxic mud-throwers on a regular basis. I also think that writing really has suffered for blockbuster productions in recent in decades…and to a lesser extent, on television, as well. Now, that’s not an across-the-board assessment. Recent series like The Expanse, The Boys, Watchmen, Black Mirror, and even the recent TNT series Snowpiercer (which is frickin’ AWESOME!) have raised the bar dramatically. The Marvel movies have been excellent, as were the Lord of the Rings movies and a few other franchises like the Christian Bale Batman movies. And anything from Pixar just scores high marks. But so many blockbusters (and especially franchises!) just drop the ball repeatedly (ahem, Star Wars, Terminator, Transformers).

            So I think we actually have more to complain about and be worried about these days.

            Now, is there a reason that writing is suffering more often lately? Have writers gotten less talented? Is Hollywood in too much of a hurry to churn things out and not spend more time refining ideas and scripts? Is there simply no such thing as an original idea anymore because everything has been done already? Is there simply too much of a requirement for big explosions these days so that character and story suffer? Many some of all of the above!

            But also remember what Billy Joel said: “You know the good ol’ days weren’t always good.” Maybe we’re just remembering the past of sci-fi through rose-colored glasses. After all, not every series that we remember fondly was always excellent. (“Spock’s Brain” anyone?) These days, I have to force myself through many old Doctor Who episodes, and Space: 1999 looks a lot different when you’re no longer an 8-year-old. The 1970s and 1980s had amazing blockbusters, but they also had “Battle Beyond the Stars.” Maybe we’re just remembering a glorious past that wasn’t quite so glorious.

            Anyway, just a few stray, random thoughts.

        1. Extreme adoration? Not necessarily. Tentative optimism is probably closer to what I’m feeling. The show looks good. So did the last Terminator movie. Sometimes life disappoints…and that could happen here. But I’m going in hopeful. It’s just who I am as a person. Were I one of the seven dwarves, I would have been Happy…or quite probably Sleepy.

  5. Always good to stir things up a bit every so often!

    I think there’s a large group of people who think Star Trek can take itself too seriously. There’s also a smaller group who think that Star Trek doesn’t take itself seriously enough. You can’t please all the people all of the time.

    Where this gets interesting is whether the former group is prepared to pay a subscription to watch it. Do they care enough?

    For what it’s worth, in my mind Galaxy Quest is the gold standard. A very funny parody with heart, action and red and green dots.

    1. Galaxy Quest was 100% satire of Star Trek executed flawlessly. I’m not sure if satire is the right word when it comes to Lower Decks, though. But I can’t think of a better word at the moment.

      1. Looking at the difference bewteen “satire” and “parody”, maybe it could be argued that “Galaxy Quests” was satire and “Lower Decks” seems to be parody:

        – – – – – – –

        Both parody and satire employ humor in commentary and criticism, but the key distinction, and the reason that parodies are more likely to be considered fair use than satires, is the purpose each serves. Satire is defined as “the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people’s stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.” Compare that to the definition of a parody: “a literary or musical work in which the style of an author or work is closely imitated for comic effect or in ridicule.”

        – – – – – – –

        I mean, the humor in satire seems to be done with some additional intent, while parody it is just making fun about something for the sake of it. And the “Lower Decks” jokes in the trailer makes me think more about “Hot Shots” than “Galaxy Quest”.

        1. Yeah, satire ain’t the right word, but neither is parody if the show wants to be seen as existing within the Star Trek universe. So what is it? Farce would be bad. What was “The Trouble with Tribbles”? If it were actual Star Trek (which it is), Scotty would never have been able to beam tens of thousands of tribbles onto a Klingon battlecruiser without being detected and possibly starting a war due to a bio-ecological first strike attack. So what is “Tribbles”? If we figure that out, maybe we can figure out Lower Decks. 🙂

          1. Maybe we wouldn’t (and/or shouldn’t) be able to define “Tribbles” as something more than “a light-hearted episode”.

            About how to reconcile the tone of the “Lower Decks” animated series and the rest of the Star Trek TV series, maybe we can take a note of what happened with the first “Clone Wars” animated series (that one done by Genndy Tartakovsky).

            That series was very well received, but even the series creators have said that some of its more memorable scenes (like Jedi Master Mace Widing riding a droid fighter using some wires of the droid’s brain as “bridles”) would seem ridiculous or far-fetched in a live action movie (or even in an animated movie with a more “realistic” tone, like the second “Clone Wars” animated series).

            The consensus about the first “Clone Wars” seems to be that it is fully canonical, and its sometimes “excessive epicness” makes sense within the context and look of that series, but if the events of that series would have to be “retold” as a live action film or tv series, the tone would be also different and some scenes would have to be told in a different way to avoid the ridiculousness which works in the original cartoon. So maybe we just should consider that what happens in the “Lower Decks” TV series has happened in the “Star Trek” universe, but if it was told as a living action TV series, it would be something closer to a happier version of “The First Duty” or “Lower Decks” episodes.

          2. Man, I completely forgot about that first Clone Wars series! I don’t think I’ve seen it listed on Disney+. Anyone notice whether or not it’s there?

            But I’m not sure the direct comparison is germane for Lower Decks. Clone Wars wasn’t played purposefully for laughs. This is going to be a tough Trek for some fans to accept, as there’s gonna be some goofball scenes that just won’t be kosher for certain fans. To be honest, if one of my crew got drunk, swung a bat-leth indiscriminately, and nearly cut the leg off another crewman, I’d court-martial the ensign right then and there. I fear there’s going to be more instances of scenarios that strain our credulity as longtime fans. But we’ll see. I’m still looking forward to it. 🙂

  6. Yeah, it’s a fine line between “laughing with” and “laughing at”.

    Maybe LD will find a more receptive audience in the UK? After all, we’ve a long tradition of satirical humour. We’re not afraid of laughing at ourselves.
    Which, IMO, is something the US struggles with sometimes.

    1. Oh, we laugh at ourselves all the time. We just don’t like other people laughing at us…although lord knows, in the last three and a half years, we’ve earned that laughter. 🙂

  7. I’ve finally taken the time to read this so I’m going to try my best to properly articulate why I hate Lower Decks.

    First I dont hate the idea of a space farce comedy. Give it any other name and I might enjoy it. But aside from Picard there hasn’t been any good Star Trek since Enterprise. Like Johnathan said above if there was more Star Trek available something like this might be fun. But I’m honestly furious that they would waste one of very few Star Trek titles on this garbage.

    After giving us that shit show called STD and (as much as I liked it) the depressing ass Picard show I want something upbeat and optimistic like Trek is supposed to be. There’s plenty of room for comedy in Trek but it’s supposed to support a more serious moralistic plot, not drive the show. Especially this kind of juvenile potty humor that we get from Rick and Morty, which for the record I dont really care for.

    I’m going to watch at least the first episode. I wish could do so without giving GREEDBS another viewer. If it turns out I like it I’ll admit it but I doubt it. And I highly doubt I’ll ever consider it canon. The Orville is the closest I ever want Star Trek to get to comedic farce. I love The Orville. It’s a perfect blend of comedy and drama with great storytelling and awesome characters. Here’s to hoping Brave New Worlds gives us the Trek we’ve been wanting.

    1. If it’s farce, my mind will certainly wonder where to “file it away” in terms of canon. But if we take ourselves and Star Trek too seriously, we might never fully appreciate an episode like “The Trouble with Tribbles” or “A Piece of the Action” because Kirk never seems to take dangerous situations in those episodes seriously. In many ways, it’s kinda like the animated series of the 1970s, too. An episode like “Mudd’s Passion” is simply ridiculous. Do we accept it to reject it?

      I’ll give the show a chance and hope that it’s entertaining. If not, I’ll move on. If yes, then I’ll figure out how to file it away in my mind later.

  8. ” The otherwise proud and impressive superhero group [Teen Titans] that I fell in love with during the 80s and 90s…”

    I suppose you fell in love with the Teen Titans comics when Marv Wolfman and George Perez took the helm? Along with the Wolfman/Perez “Wonder Woman”, “Teen Titans” was my favourite DC comic from the eighties.

    1. Wolfman and Perez were awesome. In the 80s, George Perez was one of my favorite artists. I loved his detail work on titles like New Teen Titans and The Avengers. I often wondered how he managed to draw so many lines! 🙂

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