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Star Trek: Lower Decks

Sprite

(He/Him/His)
Husband and I were not feeling this show for the first couple episodes, but the last four or so have really brought us around. It's good!

I think what I love most about it is how low stakes some of the episodes are. Like, one just has the Captain dealing with the sci-fi equivalent of a Pawnee Town Hall. It shows the annoying crap Starfleet has to deal with when the big important ships finish their grand adventure and peace out. 90s Star Trek definitely had plenty of slice of life moments, but Kurtzman Trek has really let that stuff fall to the wayside. It's cool to see a show pick up that torch.

Also Mariner has chilled out considerably from her "HEYEVERYBODYTALKINGFASTISTHESAMEASJOKESRIGHT" personality of the first couple episodes. I like her best when she and Boimler are being actual friends or when Mariner's freaking out about the prospect of having actual responsibility.

I have no idea how it's doing (seems like it's been getting bad reviews), but I believe CBS first greenlit it with a two-season pickup, so even if it's cancelled there will still be a decent chunk of it to revisit.
 

SpoonyBard

A Bard Named SPOONY
(He/Him)
Latest episode was good. They finally split up the usual pairings, and we got some meaningful insight into Mariner. And what I think is another nod to the OG Star Trek Animated series?
 
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Latest ep is the best.

It's a concept I think about a lot at work, where the culture is - if you are not constantly trying to ascend, then you are somehow not good at your job. But that way lies ruin, because by the very nature of the hieracrhy, not everyone can ascend. Therefore why pressure the capable people who are in the job they should be in, and want to be in, to peter principle themselves. Most other characters in this show are very stressed in their local rank (like Boimler) or their status vs other command staff or their legacy versus the god tier captains.

It's really great
 
It's really great
Yeah, it's got a lot of heart and thoughtfulness put into it. And this focus on the grunts is letting the show explore a lot of themes that are very relatable, as well as being an important view into this setting we love, while being from an angle we usually never get to experience. Like, this last episode hit particularly close to home with me, as someone whose friendship circle in school was a lot of very smart, overachievers, and with whom I still adore and cherish but feel an uneasy distance with since I feel like I haven't lived up to other's expectations or fulfilled all the promise I had.

And what I think is another nod to the OG Star Trek Animated series?
It was not just a 'nod' but a gigantic pulsating beacon of love and respect:
The nefarious looking Division 14 officer taking Boimler to "The Farm" is an Edosian, the same race as the Enterprise tactical officer on TAS, Arex:



 

FelixSH

(He/Him)
I watched the first episode, second one running this momeknt, and I was in pretty much immediately. Mariner is irritating, talks way too fast and hyper, but that's my only complaint. It is, by far, my favourite of the ne Trek shows. I liked the other two well enough, but they didn't give me what I am looking for in Trek. This here feels less dark and more fun.

It's also nice to explore Star Fleet from the perspective of a crew that is not top of the top.

Did I miss it, when they said which era of Trek we are at? Did they mention it? The Borg imply post-TNG. Pre-dominion? Post-dominion? It doesn't matter that much, I'm just curious.
 
Did I miss it, when they said which era of Trek we are at?
Not really. They mention Stardates that are calibrated with the way TNG formulated them that - when you do the math - comes out to being one year after the events of Star Trek: Nemesis. Which lines up with what the producers/creators have been saying about the show. But nothing within the show so far IIRC has given a specific year in dialog. (I may have missed something on some console screen in the background somewhere.)
 

FelixSH

(He/Him)
I'm caught up. It's a great show, I love it and want a full 7 season run. I definitely hope it will run at least for a few. And it really feels like Rick and Morty-ish, without the nihilism.

It feels distinct enough from 90s Trek, which is generally what my favourite kind of Trek is (specifically TNG). But it also feels like a nice evolution, if TAS wasn't just a one-shot, but had multiple iterations over the decades, like non-animated Trek. It feels modern, still very Trek-y and explores stuff that no show before did.

Dunno, I'm just rambling her, but I try (and fail) to put into words why and how much I enjoy this show. More please.
 

Sprite

(He/Him/His)
Yeah, that was really great. T’Ana getting on the wrong ship had us in stitches for like two full minutes.
 
One thing I really liked about this week's episode was that it was an opportunity for the 4 main characters to all be in the same room and interact with each other. Also, Rutherford's everything was just delightful.
 

Sprite

(He/Him/His)
It's a concept I think about a lot at work, where the culture is - if you are not constantly trying to ascend, then you are somehow not good at your job. But that way lies ruin, because by the very nature of the hieracrhy, not everyone can ascend. Therefore why pressure the capable people who are in the job they should be in, and want to be in, to peter principle themselves. Most other characters in this show are very stressed in their local rank (like Boimler) or their status vs other command staff or their legacy versus the god tier captains.
I've been thinking about this post a lot, and it's really made me identify with Mariner. I'm very good at the job I was hired to do, to the point where I was basically grandfathered in as a supervisor, which I hate. I'm great at being a cog and making suggestions but terrible at leading and keeping a team organized. And what sucks is that I know that if I left to find a different job, I'd either hit the same problem and get forced into a leadership role, or be bad at the job and feel incompetent all the time.

It's not an angle you see a lot in fiction, and it's cool to see the contrast of exploring it in a franchise that usually focuses on the absolute best of the best.
 
It's not an angle you see a lot in fiction, and it's cool to see the contrast of exploring it in a franchise that usually focuses on the absolute best of the best.
That's a lot of what makes this show work, and why the speech that Boimler makes at the end hits well rather than being stupid or sappy. Because a big part of the popular mythos surrounding Star Trek and what Star Trek often believes about itself is that these are the best of the best, when the reality of each show is that even with a show like TNG that's designed with a bunch of m/gary stus as a cast, that everyone still has flaws and makes mistakes, and that's OK.
 

Daikaiju

Rated Ages 6+
(He, Him)
"Not today, Q! We're not dealing with your Q bullshit!"
Gods I've been waiting forever for someone to blow him off!
 

Sprite

(He/Him/His)
The movie parody episode is cute, especially the overwrought ship porn scene. Though I'm glad they reined it in after that bit and kept the rest of the episode character-focused. Tendy chewing out Mariner is satisfying.

Is having family members in a direct chain of command verboten in Starfleet/the military? I wasn't even aware that Freeman being Mariner's mom was supposed to be a secret.
 

muteKi

say "fish don't exist" to my face, motherfucker
overwrought ship porn scene
As in like the intro sequences to The Motion Picture, right? Because I have seen multiple episodes of Futurama and can assure you this has other meanings
 
Yes, yes, the sequences in TMP.
Specifically the reused TMP footage in WoK, because the music they used for that scene was a loving homage to James Horner. Though there was a ton of lens flare a la nuTrek. And yeah, 'ship porn' is always in this context and not the Futurama one unless it's Futurama.

The movie parody episode is cute, especially the overwrought ship porn scene. Though I'm glad they reined it in after that bit and kept the rest of the episode character-focused. Tendy chewing out Mariner is satisfying.
I really liked this episode a whole lot. The holodeck movie was super unsettling to watch, and Tendi giving Mariner an earful felt pretty rewarding. I do like that Mariner got something out of it and learned a lot about herself, and that her big breakthrough was "therapy works!" Which seemed to always be one of TNG's long term goals/themes but it never quite knew how to show people how it did or how to properly emphasize it. Also there was plenty of plausible deniability built in but I want Rutherford to hook up with his boss real bad like.

Is having family members in a direct chain of command verboten in Starfleet/the military? I wasn't even aware that Freeman being Mariner's mom was supposed to be a secret.
We don't have a lot of precedent here in canon IIRC, but I think it goes without saying that it's ethically fraught since it's an obvious conflict of interest open to issues like nepotism. Which to be fair is exactly what's going on here. Mariner would have been kicked off any other ship, and the only thing keeping her in Starfleet instead of washing out is the extra leniency her mother is giving her. It's not the worst thing in the world, but in a place and time like 24th Century Star Trek where they actually care about ethics, it's probably a problem that would draw attention at the least.

And it's obviously not a super secret, because anyone with any inkling could just do a simple check of her service record and find out who her parents are. But the both of them clearly don't like advertising it because it would make everything very awkward.
 
This EP is hilarious. The laborious shots of the Cerritos while the one guy weeks and the Bajoran security officer essentially cums. Unreal
 
This week's episode was a rollercoaster of emotions. Probably the best season finale since Best of Both Worlds. I need time to digest what I just watched. I have so many thoughts. But the biggest ones right now is:

-Prophets bless you Shaxs, thank you for taking care of Baby Bear 😭
-Warp 5, 6, 7, 8
-THE SPOCK HELMET IS CANON

It might have been a bad idea to immediately follow up Lower Decks with Disco S3 next week, because it's gonna have even more to live up to now.
 

Sprite

(He/Him/His)
If they didn't start up Disco immediately they risk losing all the people - like me - who only subscribe for Trek content. I guess they could wait a week or two, but eh. I'd rather get what I came for sooner rather than later. CBS All Access is an absolutely terrible service so I want it around as little as possible.

I really wish we knew what the ratings were. Lower Decks reviewed poorly so I've been worried, as it's easily my favorite Kurtzman Trek so far. I know it got a two season pickup, and Kurtzman indicated the team is hard at work on Season Two, so we're probably safe for another ten episodes at least. Also COVID probably makes animated shows an easier sell than live action at the moment.
 

FelixSH

(He/Him)
I really hope this show lives on for a few seasons. It's so much fun to watch, and I love the specific setting.
 
Also - it bugs me that the titan crew has First Contact uniforms.
Kurtzverse really weird with uniform standards for star fleet
 
Also - it bugs me that the titan crew has First Contact uniforms.
Kurtzverse really weird with uniform standards for star fleet
Consider the following:

DS9 began in 2369. In it, it featured new, updated Starfleet Uniforms for the crew stationed there.

The Enterprise-D didn't begin shifting to those new uniforms until 2371 - two whole years later.

The Lower Decks takes place in the year 2380 - one year after the events of Star Trek: Nemesis where the Enterprise-E and Starfleet broadly (represented by Admiral Janeway wearing them as well) are wearing the First Contact uniforms.
 

Daikaiju

Rated Ages 6+
(He, Him)
God damn, I did not expect Shaxs's passing to hit me that hard. Also fuck you Peanut Hamper.
 

Sprite

(He/Him/His)
Just watched it. They did a great job making the villains both incredibly stupid and a legitimate threat. I'm also relieved that the fallout over Mariner's secret didn't go beyond sitcom-level embarrassment.

I really hope the show is a success. It's a shame it put its worst foot forward because it really came into its own pretty fast after that. That finale would be an okay place to leave things, I guess, though I want to see how Boimler does on the Titan. They established with the Vancouver that important ships can be an awful place to work, so I'm guessing he'll be back on the Cerritos in an episode or two.
 
Just watched it. They did a great job making the villains both incredibly stupid and a legitimate threat.
I was just jiggling with joy that the Pakleds came back, and that of course they call all starships Enterprises.

That finale would be an okay place to leave things, I guess, though I want to see how Boimler does on the Titan.
I just really enjoy that Boimler got the last laugh and pulled a fast one over Mariner finally at the end. It was a wonderful little inversion of their usual dynamic, and was a lowkey way to show he learned from her, and she learned from him.

Meanwhile Rutherford learned nothing. He anti-learned stuff! But the way he says okey dokey is honestly soul nourishment.
 
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