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MMOGamerChick Flick – Star Trek: Generations

April 1, 2010

My formal education into the Star Trek universe continues, as Professor Mr. MMOgamerchick adds Star Trek: Generations to the rigorous curriculum. While he might not be the biggest fan of Captain Picard and The Next Generation, he will admit to enjoying the movies based on this era. Thus we took an evening off earlier this week to veg out in front of the TV and watch the film. Despite the negative reviews I’ve heard from people, I actually didn’t think it was too bad!

The plot itself is nothing to rave about, but it had me hooked from the moment the film began with Kirk, Scotty and Chekov aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise-B during her maiden voyage. My hubby had explained to me beforehand that the hallmark of this movie was the scene Captain Picard gets to meet Captain Kirk, in a symbolic “passing of the torch” moment of sorts. Secretly, I think he just wanted me to watch this movie to see Picard grovel in front of James T. Kirk. Anyway, disaster strikes when the Enterprise encounters two ships trapped in a mysterious energy ribbon. They manage to rescue some of the ships’ passengers and escape…but at the cost of Captain Kirk’s life, or so it appears. Even so, I swear I almost cried when they zoomed in on Scotty’s face and the realization dawned on me that for the characters of this time, this was essentially how they lost their hero.

Skip forward to the future, where Picard et al. are having a ceremony on a ship somewhere on the high seas:

Me: “What’s up with the ship and those uniforms?”
Hubby (in his sage Yoda voice):
“Well now, what do you think?”
Me: “Did they go back in time? Another case of cultural contamination? Cosplay?”
Hubby: “No, no, and no. Come on, think about it. What have I told you before? Anytime you see something that seems out of place or doesn’t make sense in The Next Generation, it’s…”
Me: “Oooh, the holodeck! Got it.”

So, that was my first exposure to the holodeck on-screen, everyone. And despite my husband’s cynical views, I actually think it’s great. Continuing on with the story, Picard and his crew end up finding themselves at odds with the villain Dr. Tolian Soran, a crazy scientist played by the awesome Malcolm McDowell. In the true fashion of all Star Trek villains, Soran harbors an evil and deadly plot that involves the destruction of an entire star system and millions of innocent lives. Now it’s up to Picard to save the day…with the help of a legendary captain who has been presumed dead for seventy-eight years.

Well, that was fun. Sure, it had its moments of pure cheese, but there were a lot of memorable scenes too. Kirk’s demise was so heartbreaking, it’s no wonder McDowell received death threats from crazy Trekkies for his character’s part in it (even though the thought of that is full of lulz). This was also a good introduction for me into the TNG characters. Perfect timing too, as I’ve finally finished watching all of Star Trek: The Original Series. Man, Data cracked me up with his new emotion chip. I had a good time overall, and I look forward to getting some ST:TNG together so I can start watching.

18 comments

  1. Star Trek fandom is so confusing. I don’t know how anyone could love the original star trek all that much. especially considering the bad acting, bad writing, and repetition of plots. I mean how many times do we have to see someone with god-like powers? I’m not saying the original is bad, it’s ok (except for the second half of the third season which was down right awful, i mean come on, that crazy chick who inhabits kirks body?) my problem stems from people not liking TNG. how could you like the poor standards of TOS and not go on to like the better standards of TNG? Even if you don’t like the first couple seasons of TNG, which admittedly were bad in a similar way to TOS, even then it’s like the same quality.

    I mean it stands to reason if you like TOS you’d like TNG. yet there are so, so, so many people who don’t.

    I’m a Star Wars fan though, so i generally prefer higher quality.


  2. Star Wars plots and acting are higher quality? ROFLMAO


  3. To be fair, I would say there was good acting and plot in the original trilogy. The prequel trilogy on the other hand, what plot and acting? Anyway, I don’t want this to devolve into a Star Trek vs Star Wars debate, so let’s just leave it at that.

    I think the appeal of TOS has more to do with the way it defined the genre for a whole generation of sci-fi fans. Watching it now, sure the stories are cheesy and the acting/effects are kinda bad by today’s standards, but it has its moments. 40 years from now, our kids and grandkids will probably say the same about the stuff we watch today :P I can also appreciate the “vintage feel” of the original series, even though I have to agree with you about the weaker half of the 3rd season. By that point I felt the entire series had lost the flare that I so loved from Season 2.

    And I haven’t watched much of TNG yet, but one criticism I often hear repeated is that it’s boring. I can kinda understand the sentiment. From the random episodes I’ve caught on TV in the last couple of week, no one ever dies, most stories take place on the ship, and for the most part the villains are tame and not very threatening (but I heard much of this changed later on in the series). Pretty much the opposite of what TOS established with the exploration, evil enemies and the crew being placed in danger all the time. Diplomatic solutions are cool and all, but I guess some people want some conflict, some action.


  4. Aww, I was so set to escalate the nerd-rage.

    I think you’re right about TOS “defining” on-screen Sci-Fi for a generation. I grew up in the Star Wars generation and thought TOS was lame like Lost in Space when I first watched it in re-runs. What got me involved were the novels of the period. So much so that when Spock died in TWOK I actually cried, more than one time, watching and reading the novel. He got better though. :P

    Anyway when TNG premiered I was primed and loved every second of it. So who is the better captain? That’s like trying to compare two American Generals from different eras. Different times call for different talents and personalities.


    • Well said, Sunsage.

      And you’re like the second person who has said they’ve cried when Spock died in TWOK. Oh geez, I’m going to bawl my eyes out when I watch it, aren’t I?


      • Yes, you are. I still tear up.

        It’s like, the greatest cinematic death ever.


  5. this is april fools day, I reserve the right to keep my tongue in cheek when saying anything.


  6. “So, that was my first exposure to the holodeck on-screen, everyone. And despite my husband’s cynical views, I actually think it’s great.”

    Oh the Holodeck is fine in Generations. I would argue it’s fine in all the Next Gen films. Because it’s bloody working.

    If it had broken down like it had done so many times in the past during the sailing program, well, to paraphrase Ian Malcom: “The Pirates would have eaten the tourists”.


    • hahah, so well said.

      Reminds me of something a friend showed me once, a humorous piece on Something Awful. It is much funnier if you’ve seen each of the episodes (like I, err, did.)

      The Life and Times of a Holodeck Janitor


  7. I liked Generations. I also liked First Contact.

    But what I particularly liked was The Wrath of Khan. The theme of Kirk constantly succeeding – but at the cost of those around him – is really well executed. Also, Ricardo Montalban is a badass.


  8. The best way to watch TNG would probably be to watch the “Fan Collective” collections. They combined all of the episodes from each series about one topic – like the Borg, or time travel. That strikes me as an awesome way to be exposed to some of the best episodes evar.


    • Thanks for the tip! Ooh, I’m excited about getting to watch stuff with the borg!


      • If you’re going to start with the “Fan Collective” collections, I would recommend starting with the Q set. It contains both the first episdoes of the Next Generation as well as the series finale. And it also features the first appearance of the Borg.


      • If you do get the Borg Fan Collective, I highly recommend you watch the first episode – from Enterprise – only after you’ve seen the First Contact movie. It’s much more fun that way.


  9. Generations is one of my favorite movies, primarily because of Data. The emotion chips and some of the lines he has are hilarious. Probably why I love First Contact so much too.

    As Trek fans go I’m pretty easy to please, I enjoyed the Enterprise series (except for the folksy intro music).


    • Data really surprised me, especially since the first TNG episode I ever watched was the one where he decided to make an android daughter for himself and I thought he was really corny. :P That last scene in Generations with him and his cat, marveling at the phenomenon of being happy and in tears at the same time sold me on him forever though.

      And from what I heard about the Enterprise series, it was the least popular one and the only Star Trek series to ever be canceled before it’s full run? My husband likes it though, and I’ve caught an episode or two on TV (though I usually miss it because it’s on pretty early) to see T’Pol and watch how a female Vulcan acts :P And you’re right about the intro music, I thought I was watching the wrong show at first.


      • Yeah, Enterprise in not very popular, I’ve never been clear on why. I really enjoyed how they played with some of the stereotypes of the series, like how everyone is afraid of the transporter and will only use it for cargo. Plus, I’m a big fan of Andorians and they were never featured much that I can remember, except maybe in TOS.


  10. I was over at avclub.com and was reminded they did episode reviews for every episode of Star Trek: tos, the movies up to 6 iirc, and the animated series. it’s often very insightful.

    http://www.avclub.com/tvclub/tvshow/star-trek,62/

    They’ve also begun reviewing ST: TNG, the first episode review was put up a few days ago.

    http://www.avclub.com/articles/encounter-at-farpoint,39777/

    Fun to read after you’ve watched an episode or what not.



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