For those non-Star Trek fans; “The Best of Both Worlds,” a two-part cliffhanger that ended season three and opened season four, is arguably the best episode of the series, and is considered to be one of the greatest cliffhangers in television history.
In “The Best of Both Worlds,” Captain Picard (Patrick Stewart) and the crew of the Enterprise tangle with the Borg, a cold and methodical robot-type creatures that travel through the universe destroying worlds and assimilating inhabitants into their collective. Oh sure, we never see any Borg that look like any of the other aliens races introduced on Star Trek, but that is beside the point. Resistance is futile, and when the Borg assimilate Capitan Picard, it looks like second in command Will Riker (Jonathan Frakes) will have to kill the captain to save the Earth. Yes, they do manage to tell the story without uttering the line; “The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one”.
So, when Fathom Events and CBS Home Entertainment announced they were bringing a version of “The Best of Both Worlds” that was seamlessly tied together as one continuous and uninterrupted story digitally restored with new CGI effects to the big screen, Star Trek fans were more than ready to beam on down to the theatre. For a Star Trek fan; having their favorite television show on the big screen at a movie theatre truly would be “The Best of Both Worlds.”
On Thursday April 25th, Fathom and CBS did as they promised and threw in special clips from “Regeneration: Engaging the Borg”, a behind-the-scenes look at the making of “The Best of Both Worlds,” as well as some Star Trek bloopers.
Whereas “The Best of Both Worlds” remains a classic episode of Star Trek that is well written and executed, the same could not be said for the evening as a whole. Fathom Events simply fails to put on a good show.
The evening opened with a montage of before and after restoration photos from Star Trek: The Next Generation, on-screen trivia questions, and pictures of people who had utilized a free app to upload a photo of themselves and get borged. This was not a good start to the evening. The trivia questions were interesting, but the background music during this portion of the evening became annoying quite quickly, the restored photos were unimpressive, and the only people interested in the Borg pictures were the people in the pictures. This montage started a few minutes before 7:00 (The time the show was scheduled to begin) and ran until 7:10, which was ten minutes too long for the majority of the audience.
Next up was special clips from “Regeneration: Engaging the Borg”, a behind-the-scenes look at the making of “The Best of Both Worlds.” Certainly an entertaining and informative documentary, it would have been for more enjoyable after the showing of the feature rather than before. The poor decision to show the documentary first was compounded by the fact that, though the documentary was full screen, “The Best of Both Worlds” was not, and the transition from the documentary to the feature made that fact more obvious and distracting.
The audience clearly enjoyed the feature as well as the bloopers that followed. Unfortunately, the bloopers were followed by a commercial for the Blu-ray release of the fourth season of Star Trek: The Next Generation, which had fans running for the exits.
Star Trek fans are loyal and love their show, so most left happy. That does not change the fact that Fathom needs to make better decisions, and continue to develop their ability to put on a good show.
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