I got excited when ‘Picard’ came out, although, admittedly, I have yet seen a single episode. I wanted to re-watch all of Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes before I committed.
At the time, I didn't realize how big of a task it was and I am still making my way through the seventh season but it has given me time to reflect on how television shows have changed throughout the years.
Surprisingly, unlike a lot of other sci-fi shows, The Next Generation actually holds up 26 years later. However, the special effects are not amazing, for a television show in the late 80s and early 90s and with a minimal budget, they hold up surprisingly well, although they have been touched up. The sets are also surprisingly detailed and elaborate.
As one might expect for a show that relies heavily on made-up science, there is a significant amount of separation from realism and logic jumps that the viewer has to overcome, but for any Trekkie this is par of the course. It is my summation that Star Trek: The Next Generation is still one of the best television shows ever produced. The show touches on deep issues such as what it means to be human, the importance of a collective history, and how science and technology impact the way that we relate to the world around us.
What a modern audience will find most challenging to accept in this Netflix-binge era is the episodic storytelling; for example, a main character might die in one episode and barely get a mentioned in the next. This is, of course, dictated by the rules of television at the time.
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