| Oh, man...could I rave...and rant on this.|
Re the TOS, Roddenberry started something in our culture that was really necessary: acceptance of SF ideas re 'the universe beyond our globe' as being 'mainstream-media' seriously discussable. He went way past Serling and others (extremely good, in their own way, cultural-effect-wise), especially when he fought for the 'satanic' looking Spock to not be 'kept in the background,' as the suits wanted him to be. And his multi-ethnic (which of course won't exist by that century) orientation which benevolently preceded the near-malevolently multi-cultural PC we have nowadays was itself groundbreaking at the time. Yes, the stories had flaws (easily seen with 20/20 hindsight nowadays)...as Harlan Ellison (a GREAT writer) would be the 1st to list all therein...but it had 1 thing stressed more than any other show of the time, which carried through ALL it's spin-offs: mutual respect for all disagreers (to-a-point!), especially amongst the 'family' of the given crew...even including alien children...and Q (and I loved Q, from TNG's pilot-ep all the way through.).
Mutual respect for all disagreers (to-a-point!): Something many SOLO posters could still learn from.
I think that the problem with the spinoffs essentially came down to 1 thing only: the writers hired for the last spinoff (Voyager, I believe?), as the writers at the ends of DS9 and TNG, had little conception of 'where to go' beyond where they and others had already been, story-wise. Their writing became 'hack' (as the last season of TOS did.) --- They introduced a 'hologram-doctor' who was to be as unique (and maybe similar to, re 'questioning the meaning of being human') as Mr. Spock or Data...but who ended up being merely another crew-member who's quarters were in a computer; ergo they brought in Borg-Space-Babe '7-of-9' (Not that I'm complaining there...except for what I see as the reason. That Borg needs no 'reasons' to exist! Talk about a MakeMeSilly-milation! I can only wonder why Kate Mulgrew put up with that. As an aside: I always preferred Uhura anyway.) The 'idea' got tired, because the decision-makers for writer-hirings got tired; they sure couldn't put up with outside imaginations (re Harlan types), and the inside ones ran out of theirs.
I could list *my* faves (oh, since you insist, ok. just one: TNG's "The Measure of Man." I'll leave it to you to guess why), but, I shan't. Most of those listed in prev posts pretty well cover them (uh, ok; 1 more: Harlan Ellison's TOS: "The City on the Edge of Forever.")
But, overall, really what kept the series, and spinoffs, so popular was: the relationships amongst the characters, though such couln't carry chronically 'hack' stories. From TOS to Voyager, this is why I think that they'll be re-run for-near-ever: they've gone where no civilisation has gone before.
Reason to see mutual trust in the benevolence of each other, conflicts notwithstanding.
P.S: Some may consider Star Trek: Enterprise as part of the spinoffs. Sorry, I don't. It's a wannabee by the same company, but it's lack of imagination already was showing right from the beginning. The horse broke a leg getting out of the gate. And I like Scott Bakula (and Jolene isn't bad either...ntl...)
(Edited by John Dailey on 8/10, 8:38pm)
(Edited by John Dailey on 8/10, 8:42pm)