Star Trek the Next Generation Season One
good time to be a Star Trek fan, especially with the Australian release
of Star Trek the Next Generation (ST TNG) Season One on glorious
Blu-ray. After the HD-DVD fiasco with Star Trek several years ago, fans
can of STNG can now finally add this definitive Star Trek series to
their collection and by Starfleet does it look good... we also believed
that Blu-ray was the only high definition format.
Just like the sampler disc which
was released, the video and audio quality almost make STNG seem like
something that was filmed today. If you have never seen the sampler disc
before, Paramount have added a very cool advertisement to start of this
Blu-ray disc which really gets your Trekker adrenaline pumping. It basically highlights some of the changes made to the
Blu-ray which shows a side by side comparison of the original TV series
compared to the remastered Blu-ray version. The difference is like night
Even though this release does not offer widescreen (16:9) as the
original series was filmed in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 which is how the
series first aired, video quality however is the key to this remastered
release. Whether you're looking at the pores on Captain Picard's (Patrick
Stewart) face, the texture detail on Counsellor Troi's (Marina Sirtis)
uniform or seeing the saucer section of the Enterprise detach from the
main hull, it's almost like you are watching the series for the first
time again due to the extreme clarity. The only downside to the video
quality is that there is some grain which unfortunately on Blu-ray
stands out even more. Fortunately this is a moot point. However to compliment the video, you have the
amazing sound quality of DTS-HD 7.1 which creates this amazing Star Trek experience.
However all this quality does highlight some of the budgetary
limitations of filming this new series of Star Trek. As everything is so
clear and sharp, sets look a little cheaper than I originally imagined,
including some of the uniforms. However for true trekkers, this should
not pose any issues but just be warned, you do get up close and
personal. Although I'm sure most Trekkers would like to get up close and
personal with either Security Officer Tasha Yar (Denise Crosby) or
Counsellor Troi, unless of course Worf, our favourite Klingon (Michael Dorn) is more your
style. All kidding aside, Paramount should be commended on such an
amazing release that will definitely help this series stand the test of
time, even longer now.
Unlike George Lucas' totally revamp of Star Wars, The Empire Strikes
Back and Return of the Jedi, the people responsible for remastering this
series have not added new people or special effects into the original
story. Rather, by touching up the video quality and special effects, it
just highlights the vision of Gene Roddenberry even more. For the
uninitiated Star Trek the Next Generation was a modern sequel to the
original Star Trek series helmed by William Shatner as Captain Kirk and
Leonard Nimoy as Spock. Roddenberry's vision of Star Trek was where
humanity had progressed over their bitter wars, racism and social
issues. However as they explored the galaxy, they did encounter similar
themes which at times was a social commentary on the 20th century. The
original series was released in 1966 and ran until 1969 before it
spawned a handful of movies.
Then in 1994, Star Trek the Next Generation was released which proved so
popular, it produced 7 seasons, a spin-off series and movies. Leading
the crew of the New Starship Enterprise is Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Sir
Patrick Stewart) and Commander William T. Riker (Jonathan Frakes) who
proved much more serious than the original captain. Their crew was made
up Counsellor Deanne Troi (Marina Sirtis), an telepathic empath, Lt.
Commander Data (Brent Spiner), an android who is trying to become human
and Lieutenant Worf (Michael Dorn), a Klingon who now calls the united
federation home. It was a varied cast that proved a successful formula
for trekkers and sci-fi buffs around the world.
remastered edition of season one of Star Trek the Next
Generation contains the pilot Encounter at Farpoint which introduced one of their
most annoying nemesis, Q, a godlike prankster. Looking back at this
episode, it's still written extremely well and doesn't date poorly.
Other episodes include The Naked Now, Code of Honor, The Last Outpost,
Where no One Has Gone Before, Lonely Among Us, Justice, The Battle, Hide
and Q, Haven, The Big Goodbye, Datalore, Angel One, 11001001, Too Short
a Season, When the Bough Breaks, Home Soil, Coming of Age, Heart of
Glory, The Arsenal of Freedom, Symbiosis, Skin of Evil, We'll Always
Have Paris, Conspiracy and The Neutral Zone. You're definitely getting
value for money here.
This collection also features a plethora of special features that
include over 95 minutes of new documentaries and cast/crew interviews
plus some fun episodic promos.
The documentaries incorporate the essence of Star Trek into them that
include the origin of this series, the remastering of the series plus
some great promos, archival footage and gag reels. Even the menu is
oozing with a ST NG atmosphere that shows that Paramount has cut no
corners in this release.
If you're a fan of Star Trek, than I could happily recommend this
Blu-ray release to all trekkers and true sci-fi buffs. Even if you missed Star Trek
the original airing or were too young but you're
a fan of sci-fi, than this release will definitely create thousands of
new fans. Its been painstakingly remastered and whether it's improved
video quality or the background ambience of the sound effects such as
the computer sounds on the bridge that sounds amazing thanks to the
DTS-HD MA 7.1 soundtrack, Star Trek the Next Generation has
never been this good. This is how a sci-fi series should look and sound
but best of all, the stories are just as entertaining as they originally
were in 1994.