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Braga And Coto Talk Enterprise

Vice_Adm_Baxter

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Report this Aug. 11 2009, 5:54 pm

In what is becoming a new tradition for the annual Star Trek Las Vegas Convention, Manny Coto and Brannon Braga held a well-attended panel in the main ballroom to talk to the fans about their time as writers and producers on Star Trek, with a focus on Star Trek Enterprise, but also some discussion of the new movie, and their current series.

Enterprise
Much of the talk of the day focused on Star Trek Enterprise, which was co-created by Braga, who acted as show-runner for the first three seasons. Coto joined the show in the third season and became show-runner for the fourth. Although a Coto dismissed a fan¿s comment that he "saved the show", with the writer noting "I didn¿t think it needed saving, I liked the show." But Braga was not so kind to himself, saying to Coto "I did think your season was the best season" and going on to say "that is what Enterprise should have been from the beginning."

The topic of "The Are The Voyages", the controversial TNG tie-in finale of Enterprise, came up, and Braga again was very candid, saying:

   Braga: I will take full blame for that episode, for those that didn¿t like it. In retrospect, it was a very cool idea, that in the end was a mistake. The concept was was to have Manny do a final two-part finale, but then have a final final episode send a valentine to all of Star Trek over the last eighteen years. We just thought it would be a cool concept to show the Next Generation¿s crew looking back, though the holodeck, at Archer¿s crew. It is a high concept, but I am not sure it came together.

Here are some more Enterprise highlights gleaned from the Q&A

   * Berman and Braga had not considered anyone else besides the studio choice of Scott Bakula as Archer for Enterprise, and he was the first role cast
   * One of the "people we couldn¿t get" prototypes in mind for Archer was Harrison Ford
   * Coto suggested bringing in Judy and Gar Reeves-Season for season four to help pick up threads from TOS, which they had shown they could do with their novels. Originally as possibly story consultants, but turned out they could "do everything" and write screenplays as well

And specific highlights on what Season 5 could have brought

   * Coto wanted to revisit the Mirror Universe on a regular basis with four or five episodes spread through the season as a "mini-series within a series." Mike Sussman and Coto had discussed places to go with it and it was "big regret" not getting chance
   * The two main things they wanted to do with S5 was the "origins of the Federation" and the "begin whispers of the Romulan War", and tying those two together
   * No other major villains were planned to be introduced, the Romulans were going to be the big villain, but would have new ones within new ¿mini-arcs¿
   * Rick and Brannon thought Future Guy was "probably going to be a Romulan" and would tie into the Romulan War with a future Romulan trying to "instigate" things
   * They wanted to make Shran a regular character on the bridge of the NX-01 as an "auxiliary or an advisor¿get Jeffrey [Combs] Somehow"




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RedShirtGuyNumber1001

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Report this Aug. 11 2009, 6:16 pm

we don't want those guys back i don't care how sorry he says he is.  he misses his meal ticket, i say tuff doo doo pal.

grigori

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Report this Aug. 11 2009, 6:31 pm

Quote (Vice_Adm_Baxter @ Aug. 11 2009, 5:54 pm)
¿ ¿* The two main things they wanted to do with S5 was the "origins of the Federation" and the "begin whispers of the Romulan War", and tying those two together
¿ ¿* No other major villains were planned to be introduced, the Romulans were going to be the big villain, but would have new ones within new ?mini-arcs?
¿ ¿* Rick and Brannon thought Future Guy was "probably going to be a Romulan" and would tie into the Romulan War with a future Romulan trying to "instigate" things
¿ ¿* They wanted to make Shran a regular character on the bridge of the NX-01 as an "auxiliary or an advisor?get Jeffrey [Combs] Somehow"

It sure looks like they had every intention of introducing elements and facts that would have pre-empted many of the biggest criticisms of ENT, and tied things up better than they had a chance to.

Tx, VAB.

Dbear1

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Report this Aug. 11 2009, 6:37 pm

I think that TATV would have been more excepted if they had not done two things.  

First killing Trip off, especially in such a poor fashion and second having it as the final episode for the entire series.  

If it had been a filler episode in the middle of one of the seasons showing how the TNG crew looked back at Enterprise time frame it could have worked.  Like the DS9 episode going over Trouble with Tribbles back in Kirks day.  But the way it was done seemed as a insult to both the actors of Enterprise and the fans of that show.

grigori

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Report this Aug. 11 2009, 6:43 pm

Dbear, no one disputes this. :) The point is, had the show continued with the ideas above, there would have been no need for such a shoddy, slapped-together last episode.

RedShirtGuyNumber1001

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Report this Aug. 11 2009, 11:36 pm

screw braga and his opinions i'll stick with abrams 4 now

ENT567

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Report this Aug. 12 2009, 4:35 am

:logical:

The best would have probably been if Braga and Coto had worked together from the beginning, like they did in S.3 (but I stronly stand by my opinion that Coto alone was not so good - clearly weaker than Braga).

Too bad that Braga's efforts didn't find good response in the majority of Trek fans.
Imo, Braga's Trek, especially in ENT, is just what mature & entertaining science fiction is supposed to be - without unnecessary dark dramatism or irrational mysticism and fairy tales in sci-fi disguise.

My thanks and respect go to Brannon Braga. :cool:

Middleman

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Report this Aug. 12 2009, 12:30 pm

Quote (RedShirtGuyNumber1001 @ Aug. 11 2009, 11:36 pm)
screw braga and his opinions i'll stick with abrams 4 now

Question for you: Do you think Abrams Trek and his characters will generate the same fan loyalty that TOS generated? Or that any of the other series generated for that matter? Is it quality content or just a simple money play to capitalize off of TOS goodwill? I hate to say this because I'm not a Braga fan, but I think he created some great characters that evoke fan loyalty.

(BTW: I'm not bashing the movie, I actually liked it ... sort of)

grigori

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Report this Aug. 12 2009, 1:08 pm

Quote (Yanks @ Aug. 12 2009, 12:48 pm)
While I'm a huge Jeffrey Combs fan and I loved Shran, but I can't see him on the bridge of good ship Enterprise as a regular.

I've considered the suggestion, and although it could work, it would really upset the balance of characters and have to be handled extremely carefully. Anything to see more Shran.

Maybe it would have ended up temporary till he regained standing among Andorians, in which case they could have PLANNED all sorts of conflict involving Shran as crew member, then resolved it.

Maybe Michael A. Martin is listening...

ENT567

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Report this Aug. 12 2009, 1:53 pm

Quote (Middleman @ Posted: Aug. 12 2009, 12:30 pm)
I hate to say this because I'm not a Braga fan

ENT = Braga, and vice versa.
We like him for giving us ENT (larger thing), but we hate him for killing Trip (lesser thing)... ;)

ENT567

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Report this Aug. 12 2009, 3:09 pm

Quote
generally writing, directing, lack of foresight

Let's see:

Did TOS have writing generally better than ENT?
No
(ENT never had anything as weak as The Savage Curtain, The Omega Glory, Who Mourns for Adonais?, Catspaw, The Apple, And the Children Shall Lead, That Which Survives)

Did TOS have directing generally better than ENT?
Certainly no.

Did TOS have any foresight?
Obviously not.

(not "bashing", just levelling the disbalance of judgment)

Middleman

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Report this Aug. 12 2009, 3:18 pm

Quote (Yanks @ Aug. 12 2009, 12:51 pm)
Yup, killing Trip "tripped" my trigger for sure. I might have been able to live with the rest had they not done that.

That was only one of its two unforgivable problems.

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Report this Aug. 12 2009, 3:38 pm

I would have like to have seen at least one 2 part Mirror episode to ¿wrap things up in that universe.
But yeah 4-5 a year is probably too much.
I gotta agree that as much as I love Shran and Jeffrey Combs, he might have pushed the other underdeveloped characters to the side.
Of course if they could have gotten both Shran on board and given Hoshi, Phlox, Malcolm and especially Travis more to do, then that would have been swell.
And yes, I'm still ticked off they never got to cover the Romulan War.

grigori

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Report this Aug. 12 2009, 3:53 pm

Quote (BrianHMay @ Aug. 12 2009, 3:38 pm)
Of course if they could have gotten both Shran on board and given Hoshi, Phlox, Malcolm and especially Travis more to do, then that would have been swell.

I can picture Shran's brand of trouble-making giving Hoshi, Mayweather & Reed more than enough to do! That's what I meant by handling carefully what would no doubt seriously unbalance the existing cast.

ENT567

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Report this Aug. 12 2009, 4:21 pm

:laugh:

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