Star Trek: The Next Generation: Seasons 1-3 Are the Picks of the Week

I am not what one would consider to be a trekkie (or a trekker or if you want to get technical.) I have fond memories of watching the original series as a kid and as a teenager arguing with my sister about how much better it was than The Next Generation (while simultaneously watching every new episode.) I’ve seen most of the movies in the theatre, and all of them more than once. But no, I wouldn’t consider myself a true fan.

I stopped watching the TV franchise after TNG, having never seen a moment of any of the subsequent series. I’ve never been to a convention, nor wore Spock ears. For the most part, I stopped paying any attention to the series years ago. I did see the reboot but that was more because I felt like I was supposed to do rather than what I really desired to do.

When The Next Generation showed up streaming on Netflix, I decided to go back and see if my memory of the show was as good as it actually was. It isn’t. It feels very dated now and cheesy. Lots of bad writing and hammy acting. But there’s still a certain charm to it. I like how they tried to keep the feel of the original while still updating it for modern audiences. I’ve always loved how they attempt to deal with larger themes that humanity will always have to deal with while still making it a fun space show. Even when the end result is less than what we might now expect from quality TV in the age of Game of Thrones and Battlestar Galactica.

Perhaps that’s not the warmest welcome I’ve ever given my Pick of the Week. Perhaps this week was lacking in any real big films that I am dying to own. Perhaps that’s okay, too. While it wouldn’t be the prize in my collection, I will be happy to include Star Trek: The Next Generation into my shelves. I’m sure lot of others will feel the same.

The three seasons are being sold separately with no boxed set in sight. Season One seems to have zero in the realm of special features but the latter two seasons have audio commentaries and a number of featurettes on the making of each season.

Also out this week that looks interesting:

Silver Linings Playbook: I’ll see pretty much anything David O. Russell makes and when it gets the award nominations this one did, I’ll see it soon.

Not Fade Away: This first feature film from writer/director David Chase stars James Gandolfini as a grumpy, “out of touch with the times” father from New Jersey. No, it isn’t a Sopranos sequel, but is loosely based on Chase’s childhood growing up in the ’60s. It slipped through the theaters without much notice, but I’ll give it a try.

Broken City: Mark Wahlberg and Russell Crowe star in this crime drama. It’s gotten lousy reviews, but it’s worth a mention just for those actors. Read Mark Buckingham’s review.

Mat Brewster

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