Originally Posted by mgkdragn
Exactly .. it's a plot / dialog / character driven show, folks .. if FX were the determining factor, Trek original would need to be considered a failure .. heck, the sets were made out of cardboard ..
As I've said before, many of the shows that are worshipped by the fans today would apparently be a big fail with the couch critics of today .. all things being equal ..
Now wait a second...
Star Trek has never been about the ship or the aliens. It's always been a commentary on our society as humans. It just happens to take place in space. The fact that it takes place in space merely allows us to explore issues like race relations, equality, genocide, war and fear of oppression without being seen as such. If you set out to make a show like that set in the present day on Earth, it's likely it would be to polarizing to be widely accepted.
Put it in the future aboard a Starship, though, and you can slip all that in there. It's like Sesame Street disguising learning by teaching stuff with furry monsters.
Further, we've seen incarnations of Star Trek in recent decades that often tell similar tales, just with better sets and different actors playing similar characters. Therefore, it's a good bet that if the original Star Trek were made now with the tools available now, it would likely have the same dedicated audience and likely use similar amounts of FX - just with a bit more polish in regards to sets and such.
Star Trek:TNG and DS9 had rather long runs compared to a lot of other shows at the time (or even now). Yet, the only indication they were in space on many episodes were a few exterior establishing shots and the occasional window with a star field in it. Heck, that star field was actually a sparkly curtain, which is about as low tech as you can get.
In the case of Voyager and Enterprise, the biggest issues were ongoing arcs with alien species that bogged down the show (Kazon and Xindi) along with cardboard characters we didn't care about. Plus, those shows more than any incorporated special FX into them to try to boost weak plotline and too often fell back to the same few characters to fix everything that went wrong each episode.
Though Firefly wasn't popular, there's no doubt it has a loyal fan base. Again, it was a show that relied on great characters rather than FX. If there was a down side, it was that it started out appearing to be a campy "Cowboys in Space" show. It's too bad most viewers never saw the great episodes that followed the first couple.
If there's a failing with many SciFi shows, it's the lack of genuine character development and quality dialog during those times when effects aren't available along with some desire to shove action into it.