First time viewing of "Star Trek: Discovery"

I saw my 1st episode of Star Trek: Discovery.

I enjoyed the beautiful cinematography. The writing is ok too. I think it will be one of the better Star Trek iterations.

However, the appearance of the Klingons, confused me, as it has throughout the various iterations of Star Trek.

Can anyone explain (logically in terms of the ongoing story line) how or why the appearance of Klingons has been so drastically different from the earliest to, now, the latest Star Trek shows?

i.e., In the original Star Trek TV series, klingons did not look a great deal different than Earth homo sapiens. By Star Trek next Generation, klingons looked like Whorf (much different physical appearance and more imposing features). Now with ST: Discovery, the klingons look more spookily different from earthlings than Whorf-like klingons.

Also I am not clear on when Discovery lies in the overall timeline of the various Star Trek series.

I had a few questions at the beginning of that. You pretty much have to let them go. With the Klingons, it’s something about them being defeated and hiding out on that weird ship. Keep an eye on the albino. The explanations I eventually got were not completely satisfying. It’s still the best series though. Although Picard is now a contender too. Well, and Lower Decks, but that’s a class by itself.

That was actually one of my biggest complaints about the show (besides that I find it “magical” and “boring”). In Star Trek: The Next Generation (the only one of the shows I outright loved) they actually addressed the change in the Klingon appearance in an episode where they went back in time and when Discovery was announced to be in a time before the original series following a story line which had been mentioned but never explored I really hoped that this is what it would be.

In the episode of TNG some of the crew go back in time to the old Enterprise. I don’t remember the exact plot, but someone mentions that there were supposed to be Klingons there and stated that they didn’t see any. Someone else spoke up, saying they’re all around the team and points a group out. The original person was amazed that they looked human and asked Wharf what happened to change their appearance so much. Wharf didn’t want to talk about it. So they acknowledged that Klingons looked very differently from their past just a couple hundred years before, but didn’t elaborate.

In Discovery, as far as I can tell, they just wanted to make them look mare alien, stronger, tougher and more brutish. I watched the first season, maybe the second? I won’t bother with a third. I just don’t care about the story or the crew. The “magic spaceship” which jumps around from place to place instantly, a technology they don’t have hundreds of years in the future, was a big turn off for me.

That being said, my taste in sci-fi is WAY different than the mainstream. I hated Babylon 5 (it was a soap opera in space. Pass), and Firefly (I cannot stand “future-past” in the least, so the chick who talked like she was from eighteen fifty suck was an immediate “pass” for me. Space her and maybe I’ll watch the episodes after that.) or ANYTHING Star Wars (I love advanced technology. Somehow I just cannot imagine the greatest weapon in the universe being ANY iteration of a sword. Jarjar was just the hot, steaming pile on top what I already saw as a shit pie). My favorite show, was probably Stargate: Universe, which was “universally” accepted to be crap by everyone else. I think it’s because it’s the technology I’m interested in and that ship was all tech. No magic bacteria, no useless swords, no “techno-mage” bullshit, no soap opera, just people stuck on the greatest piece of tech mankind has ever seen, surrounded by amazing tech they dare not touch, discovering new things all the time. I’m pretty sure that it’s the tech which does it for me in sci-fi. I don’t want any “old” stuff like swords or magic in it. I don’t care about your interpersonal relationships as their own plot line, but TNG threw them in “on the side”, which I liked very much. And Scott Bacula is “Quantum Leap guy” and NOTHING ELSE. He wasn’t even good in that. I don’t know what it is about him. I see his face and I’m instantly bored. And then he talks…

I actually didn’t really love any of the Star Trek series except the original and TNG. Even DS9 was too much of a soap opera for me.

We were excited to hear about the new series, then we saw that it was by subscription only. I can’t remember which service. But why do shows do this? Is there really a larger audience in a streaming service vs. a general platform or just regular TV?

I can’t remember which service. -- cuthbertj
It's CBS All Access. I get the lowest level, where you get commercials. It's something like $30 per year. It's an app and I have a smart TV, so I just start it up and stream it. The app is a pain in the butt, you have to search every time and I haven't found a favorites list. But I only use it for a few shows.

Oh my, 30 a year, not a lot, but still, commercials? Oy. I still wonder though, there a a zillion streaming services, Pluto, hulu, zumo, (all seem to have silly short names), not to mention Netflix. I guess there’s enough of an audience or operating a streaming service is dirt cheap.

People are cutting the cord because of the high price of cable subscriptions, which is made possible by streaming services. But now everybody and their brother is starting a streaming subscription service to try to cash in. And the only way to compete with the big names is to have, in their minds, that one big show that you just can’t miss. If you got them all they would be more than cable.

Hopefully this “one big show” model dies out in the next few years. I’m not going to pay anywhere near cable prices ever again. And since cutting the cord you get to charge me a fee OR you get to have commercials in your service. You can’t have both. Not from me, anyway. I refuse to pay twice and commercials are a cost the customer pays. And really I would be hard pressed to think of a single show that’s worth paying for an entire service to watch. It would have to offer some other benefit besides. The cheapest price I’m seeing for CBS All Access with limited commercials is $5.99/month, $71.88 a year. For a single channel? No way. The cable companies pay less than $2 a month per subscriber for the most expensive channel, Fox. At that price by the time you got all the content you might want you may as well just get cable again. I pay about twice that each for Hulu and Prime (Netflix comes with my phone service), but they are major competitors with content from all over the place. This is just one channel. $2.50 a month, maybe, but WITHOUT commercials.

My husband and I really don’t see Discovery as being Star Trek. Star Trek has more humanistic attributes to it and it’s not so dark. My husband’s biggest complaint is that it’s dark, as if there is no hope for a better future. We aren’t fans of JJ Trek. We’re more TOS, TNG, VOY, and DS9. Although we’ve started to gain an appreciation for Enterprise, which I don’t consider Trek either, after seeing how JJ has made something that isn’t Trek. That said, JJ’s Trek doesn’t fit in the Star Trek timeline because it’s something totally different and not at all related to what we know as Star Trek. It’s like JJ threw out the Gene’s “Star Trek Bible”, wrote his own Trek, and when fans of Star Trek complained, he threw a fit by throwing his little ship far out into the future where there is no canon so he can do his own thing. He’s not doing Star Trek. He’s doing his own thing, including with the Klingons.

That’s a good point mriana. I just started season 3 last night. It’s a whole new timeline, connecting to the others, but separate. Voyager did that in a way, but it maintained the hope of returning and the Roddenberry ethical standards. I would like to see something new, but that is still in the TNG vein, but I understand that maintaining that universe was getting difficult. They had to introduce some evil within Starfleet and within Vulcan even.

I was wishing for a Titan series, but we never got it. I’ve always been an Imzadi Forever fan. In fact, that’s what my husband and I call each other- Imzadi. The new series Picard is OK, but it’s still a bit of a dark future and now with his “essence”, “brain waves”, “memories”, whatever it was in a Data like being, I’m not so sure where it’s going especially since people don’t like androids right now in the series. He also still needs to rescue Data’s daughter, so I’m not sure who that will play out either. Series two of that begins soon too.

I definitely liked Picard a whole lot better, but I’m betting that’s mostly “because Picard”. The third season of Discovery is time travel. Unless they fly around in a blue police box shows about time travel usually annoy me more than they entertain me. I’ve had most of my life to get used to the fact that there’s no such thing as canon in Doctor Who, so it doesn’t bother me, but most time travel shows just don’t do it for me.

I think you’re right with the whole stupid “reset” thing they did with the movies. It was completely an excuse to put the name “Star Trek” on “NOT Star Trek”. And “dark” is right on the nose. I noticed when I watched the latest episode that Burnham essentially has three emotions: despair, anger and fury. 2020 is very much not the year to be seeing no hope on the screen once a week.