Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Lord Revan » 2017-07-20 10:37pm

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2017-07-20 09:16pm
You know, we need more really alien aliens in fiction. Especially with how advanced even TV CG has gotten lately.
the problem isn't effects, it's how human senses and minds work, if you want something that's a real character and not a "monster", you need something you can emotionally connect with and that demands that alien cannot be "too alien" so to speak because and this might surprice you humans are best a predicting and reacting to emotions of other humans, not reacting or predicting emotions of something they can barely understand.

It's not that the makers of TV series or what not are lazy or unimaginative but rather they'd rather not have a series that no-one can follow just for the sake of having "more alien looking aliens", as I've stated for the third time now, it's not about the effects being too hard but rather it's about the limits of the human mind, limits that are more a biological fact then bigotry, after all no amount of openmindness is gonna make the human sense of smell more accute or make humans be able to see or hear outside of the range they can atm.
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2017-07-20 10:41pm

Except I can name a bunch of popular, only mildly-anthropomorphized characters from fiction.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Lord Revan » 2017-07-20 10:51pm

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2017-07-20 10:41pm
Except I can name a bunch of popular, only mildly-anthropomorphized characters from fiction.
if you're referring to Friendship is magic or cartoons in general the emotions and bodylanguage are often exagerated in those precicly for the reason I just mentioned, how many serious characters in a series aimed at adults where there was main character that was alien enough to have human like emotional responses (and no Pilot from Farscape won't count as his facial expressions were close enough to human ones to easily register).
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2017-07-20 10:59pm

Didn't even think of MLP or Farscape.

I already mentioned Watership Down.

Pretty sure I've seen some fairly non-human robots given prominent roles in SF. Its rare, but it happens.

Perhaps there's more flexibility when it comes to antagonists though (and I mean developed antagonistic characters, not just monsters or forces of nature). Hell, Darth Vader and the Nazgul may have human gestures and voices (well, barely on the voice thing, especially the Nazgul), but no real human facial features to speak of, so they're partial examples.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Lord Revan » 2017-07-21 02:06am

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2017-07-20 10:59pm
Didn't even think of MLP or Farscape.

I already mentioned Watership Down.

Pretty sure I've seen some fairly non-human robots given prominent roles in SF. Its rare, but it happens.

Perhaps there's more flexibility when it comes to antagonists though (and I mean developed antagonistic characters, not just monsters or forces of nature). Hell, Darth Vader and the Nazgul may have human gestures and voices (well, barely on the voice thing, especially the Nazgul), but no real human facial features to speak of, so they're partial examples.
as a rule of thumb the more you want your audience to connect to character more readble their emotions should be for humans, it's not limited to facial expression, for example compare C-3PO to a naaru from Warcraft, one is an android able to convey a reasonble fasimile of human emotions thru body language and tone, while the other is a flying windchime that (until recently) communicated thru musical tones. Tell me honestly which one would you prefer to watch as a major character in a TV-series.

Also because of "more you want the audience to connect to the character" means antagonists don't need to be able to express their emotions as clearly as you're not suppose to be on their side.
as quick rule you can put it this way (which the most clear emotional expressions at the top and least clear at the bottom)
  • protagonist
  • sympathetic side characters
  • sympathetic antagonist/non-sympathetic side characters (who aren't antagonists or mooks)
  • non-sympathetic antagonist
  • backround extras/mooks
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2017-07-21 06:15pm

Lord Revan wrote:
2017-07-21 02:06am
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2017-07-20 10:59pm
Didn't even think of MLP or Farscape.

I already mentioned Watership Down.

Pretty sure I've seen some fairly non-human robots given prominent roles in SF. Its rare, but it happens.

Perhaps there's more flexibility when it comes to antagonists though (and I mean developed antagonistic characters, not just monsters or forces of nature). Hell, Darth Vader and the Nazgul may have human gestures and voices (well, barely on the voice thing, especially the Nazgul), but no real human facial features to speak of, so they're partial examples.
as a rule of thumb the more you want your audience to connect to character more readble their emotions should be for humans, it's not limited to facial expression, for example compare C-3PO to a naaru from Warcraft, one is an android able to convey a reasonble fasimile of human emotions thru body language and tone, while the other is a flying windchime that (until recently) communicated thru musical tones. Tell me honestly which one would you prefer to watch as a major character in a TV-series.
All things being equal, C-3PO, though that's probably partly because I'm a Star Wars fan, but not a Warcraft fan. :wink:

But that's a pretty extreme example by the sounds of it, and just because an idea is inherently more difficult to execute does not mean that it cannot be executed well.
Also because of "more you want the audience to connect to the character" means antagonists don't need to be able to express their emotions as clearly as you're not suppose to be on their side.
Funny how Vader was hugely popular even before we got to see him as Anakin (in fact, most people seem to like his faceless Vader persona more).
as quick rule you can put it this way (which the most clear emotional expressions at the top and least clear at the bottom)
  • protagonist
  • sympathetic side characters
  • sympathetic antagonist/non-sympathetic side characters (who aren't antagonists or mooks)
  • non-sympathetic antagonist
  • backround extras/mooks
As a broad generalization, that's probably correct.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Lord Revan » 2017-07-21 09:02pm

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2017-07-21 06:15pm
Lord Revan wrote:
2017-07-21 02:06am
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2017-07-20 10:59pm
Didn't even think of MLP or Farscape.

I already mentioned Watership Down.

Pretty sure I've seen some fairly non-human robots given prominent roles in SF. Its rare, but it happens.

Perhaps there's more flexibility when it comes to antagonists though (and I mean developed antagonistic characters, not just monsters or forces of nature). Hell, Darth Vader and the Nazgul may have human gestures and voices (well, barely on the voice thing, especially the Nazgul), but no real human facial features to speak of, so they're partial examples.
as a rule of thumb the more you want your audience to connect to character more readble their emotions should be for humans, it's not limited to facial expression, for example compare C-3PO to a naaru from Warcraft, one is an android able to convey a reasonble fasimile of human emotions thru body language and tone, while the other is a flying windchime that (until recently) communicated thru musical tones. Tell me honestly which one would you prefer to watch as a major character in a TV-series.
All things being equal, C-3PO, though that's probably partly because I'm a Star Wars fan, but not a Warcraft fan. :wink:

But that's a pretty extreme example by the sounds of it, and just because an idea is inherently more difficult to execute does not mean that it cannot be executed well.
I intentionally chose an extreme example (and a species that wasn't even close to real life terrestial species, for the "alien" example) and while it's true that things like that could be executed well the risk is very high and CGI isn't exactly cheap.
Also because of "more you want the audience to connect to the character" means antagonists don't need to be able to express their emotions as clearly as you're not suppose to be on their side.
Funny how Vader was hugely popular even before we got to see him as Anakin (in fact, most people seem to like his faceless Vader persona more).
part of that is the "cool factor", second part is that generally Vader's emotions are rather clear and third and last "popular" doesn't mean same as "is able to carry the story as a protagonist".
as quick rule you can put it this way (which the most clear emotional expressions at the top and least clear at the bottom)
  • protagonist
  • sympathetic side characters
  • sympathetic antagonist/non-sympathetic side characters (who aren't antagonists or mooks)
  • non-sympathetic antagonist
  • backround extras/mooks
As a broad generalization, that's probably correct.
obviously it's a broad generalization, there's exceptions to every rule (even this one ;) ), but there's always a risk when doing TV-series and even greater risk when doing something atypical and if one (or heaven forbid all) of your protagonists fall flat or seem less likeble then the antagonists there's generally a problem there.

My point was that there's a good practical reason why TV executives are unwilling to take the risk with fully CG "utterly alien" characters and that reason isn't that they're all massive bigots.
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2017-07-21 10:29pm

I didn't say it was because they were bigots, did I?

Lacking in imagination, maybe.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Elheru Aran » 2017-07-24 04:47pm

Lord Revan wrote:
2017-07-21 09:02pm
[snip] and CGI isn't exactly cheap.
[/snip]
Yes and no.

IIRC, CGI has actually improved quite a lot in the past decade or so, even past five years, to the point where you can get 00's-era TV-quality CGI very cheaply. I'm talking the nice Stargate, nBSG, Enterprise stuff.

But quality wise, the best work is still in the last 5 to 1 percent... and you're looking at a MASSIVE price increase once you're into that small percentage. That's one reason the new Ben-Hur movie cost so much, they spent a lot of money trying to make scenes like the chariot race look really good, recreating turn-of-the-AD Israel on screen, all that (and then it flopped because the only people interested in seeing it were the church crowd, but that's another story).

So basically you can get CGI on the level of say the last season or two of Stargate pretty cheap... that's perfectly sufficient for say spaceships... aliens are a bit tricky but you don't have to worry about the Uncanny Valley so much with them. Something like the naaru, for example, if it's really basically just a flying windchime? They can do that. But once you start trying to get into photorealistic human-alien-spaceship interaction... then that's where the costs start skyrocketing.
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Lord Revan » 2017-07-25 01:12am

Elheru Aran wrote:
2017-07-24 04:47pm
Lord Revan wrote:
2017-07-21 09:02pm
[snip] and CGI isn't exactly cheap.
[/snip]
Yes and no.

IIRC, CGI has actually improved quite a lot in the past decade or so, even past five years, to the point where you can get 00's-era TV-quality CGI very cheaply. I'm talking the nice Stargate, nBSG, Enterprise stuff.

But quality wise, the best work is still in the last 5 to 1 percent... and you're looking at a MASSIVE price increase once you're into that small percentage. That's one reason the new Ben-Hur movie cost so much, they spent a lot of money trying to make scenes like the chariot race look really good, recreating turn-of-the-AD Israel on screen, all that (and then it flopped because the only people interested in seeing it were the church crowd, but that's another story).

So basically you can get CGI on the level of say the last season or two of Stargate pretty cheap... that's perfectly sufficient for say spaceships... aliens are a bit tricky but you don't have to worry about the Uncanny Valley so much with them. Something like the naaru, for example, if it's really basically just a flying windchime? They can do that. But once you start trying to get into photorealistic human-alien-spaceship interaction... then that's where the costs start skyrocketing.
true but we weren't talking about blink or you miss backround aliens or spaceships, but rather main characters that would have a lot of screentime and might be called to carry a story by themselves, so that pretty much demands a high-quality CGI model for a truly alien looking alien that can still serve that purpose.
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Prometheus Unbound » 2017-07-25 06:59am

Elheru Aran wrote:
2017-07-24 04:47pm

IIRC, CGI has actually improved quite a lot in the past decade or so, even past five years, to the point where you can get 00's-era TV-quality CGI very cheaply. I'm talking the nice Stargate, nBSG, Enterprise stuff.
SG1 was done in 480p (the CGI) or equivalent. Enterprise season 3+ was in 720p. Unsure on nBSG, I want to say 720. Certainly DS9 was 480. B5 was 360 I think heh. These days (GOT) it's in 2K or 4K.
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Elheru Aran » 2017-07-25 11:40am

Prometheus Unbound wrote:
2017-07-25 06:59am
Elheru Aran wrote:
2017-07-24 04:47pm

IIRC, CGI has actually improved quite a lot in the past decade or so, even past five years, to the point where you can get 00's-era TV-quality CGI very cheaply. I'm talking the nice Stargate, nBSG, Enterprise stuff.
SG1 was done in 480p (the CGI) or equivalent. Enterprise season 3+ was in 720p. Unsure on nBSG, I want to say 720. Certainly DS9 was 480. B5 was 360 I think heh. These days (GOT) it's in 2K or 4K.
I assume that if you were producing a TV show currently, to come out in... say... this winter or next spring, you could save money by having the CGI done in 720, for example? And if you really wanted to cheap out, or the effects didn't NEED to look good, 480?

I'm also assuming here that the rise of high-definition television has contributed to the increase in CGI quality for high-end shows like GOT, because lower quality CGI will be blatantly obvious?
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Prometheus Unbound » 2017-07-25 01:38pm

Elheru Aran wrote:
2017-07-25 11:40am
Prometheus Unbound wrote:
2017-07-25 06:59am
Elheru Aran wrote:
2017-07-24 04:47pm

IIRC, CGI has actually improved quite a lot in the past decade or so, even past five years, to the point where you can get 00's-era TV-quality CGI very cheaply. I'm talking the nice Stargate, nBSG, Enterprise stuff.
SG1 was done in 480p (the CGI) or equivalent. Enterprise season 3+ was in 720p. Unsure on nBSG, I want to say 720. Certainly DS9 was 480. B5 was 360 I think heh. These days (GOT) it's in 2K or 4K.
I assume that if you were producing a TV show currently, to come out in... say... this winter or next spring, you could save money by having the CGI done in 720, for example? And if you really wanted to cheap out, or the effects didn't NEED to look good, 480?

I'm also assuming here that the rise of high-definition television has contributed to the increase in CGI quality for high-end shows like GOT, because lower quality CGI will be blatantly obvious?
480p is 307,200 pixels to render per frame.

720p is 921,600 pixels.

1080p is 2,073,600

2k is 2,211,840

4k is 8,294,400 pixels


GoT I believe renders in 2K.

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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Lord Revan » 2017-07-25 02:24pm

there's also the matter of what the CGI is used to depict (the same applies to traditional effects as well), spaceships and fantastic creatures can work with less accurate CGI while characters and especially humans need high quality and thus more expensive CGI.

It's not just a matter resolution of the CGI, there's also the matter of "how much simplifications and shortcuts we can use and still look convincing" and "what is the purpose of the effect in the scene" that determine the cost of the effects.

good example is that in director's cut of "Star Trek the motion picture", the scene of the characters walking on the saucer of the Enterprise used colored stick figures (that would be rather simple and cheap animation) as they would only be seen from such a long distance that no real details would be visible so stick figures would be enough (and this was done with CGI)
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by edaw1982 » 2017-08-11 07:38am

mr friendly guy wrote:
2017-05-26 10:09pm
biostem wrote:
Q99 wrote:
Frankly, I don't care what race the cast is, as long as they are good actors and play the part well. What stuck out to me about the trailer is that a) it didn't feature the hero ship, b) it featured a pretty stereotypical alien, (the one who said "I'm bred for this" or something similar), c) that it looked more like the JJ 'verse than the Prime 'verse, and d) that the Shenzhou (named after a Chinese city) had an asian captain. And before anyone calls me racist regarding d, my issue wasn't that the captain was asian, it was that they gave her a ship with a specifically asian name.
As opposed to an American captain (played by a Canadian of course) captaining a ship with the same name as previous US aircraft carriers.
I get with the 'American Shipname' thing, but still..

Captain Sisko commanded
The USS Defiant not the USS Malcolm X

Captain Sulu Commanded
USS Excelsior not the USS Yamato

Captain Picard commanded
USS Enterprise-D not the USS Dunkirk

Captain Janeway commanded
USS Voyager not the USS
Earhart

Although the fact that she's named Phillipa Georgiou (a greek last name) is probably to avoid this odd choice.
I like that they haven't gone the usual "X-ethnicity X-name" they've gone. "Sure she looks Asian but that doesn't mean she has to have an Asian name."

So good on CBS/Paramount/The Writers for going with that choice.

And yes, I know I'm coming in late to this discussion.

I still think the Klingons are bloody weird looking, but at least they're trying to make them look more alien than before.

They remind me more of the Kilrathi from the 1999 Wing Commander movie; in the scale of 'weirdness'. But maybe they might work for the setting.

My only complaint with the uniforms is the ranks are too goddamned difficult to see. At least with the cuff-stripes or pips, you could see who was what.
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Q99 » 2017-08-11 08:22am

The Federation's naming scheme really does seem to be Positive Sounding English Words.

With the exception of Runabouts- Danube class Runabouts are all rivers. Ganges, Yangtzee Kiang, and Rio Grande are the three first ones, but they blow up a ton. Gander, Mekong, Orinoco, Rubicon, Shenandoah, Volga, and Yukon.

IMO, if they do Asian names, it should probably be tied to a specific class. I.e. "All X class ships are named after Cities in Asia," or such,

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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Prometheus Unbound » 2017-08-12 01:08pm

Q99 wrote:
2017-08-11 08:22am
The Federation's naming scheme really does seem to be Positive Sounding English Words.

With the exception of Runabouts- Danube class Runabouts are all rivers. Ganges, Yangtzee Kiang, and Rio Grande are the three first ones, but they blow up a ton. Gander, Mekong, Orinoco, Rubicon, Shenandoah, Volga, and Yukon.

IMO, if they do Asian names, it should probably be tied to a specific class. I.e. "All X class ships are named after Cities in Asia," or such,
Like the... Mekong, Okinawa, Khiku Maru, Kobeashi Maru, Tian An Men, Umibozu, Yangtzee Kiang, Akagi, Yamato, Hokkaido, Hiroshima, Kongo, and Kyushu?
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2017-08-12 11:23pm

How come no Federation ships with alien names, though? It gives the impression that the Federation really is... what did the Klingons call it? A Homo-sapiens only club?
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Elheru Aran » 2017-08-12 11:58pm

I want to say I've heard of an USS T'Pau-- well, it was a Vulcan name, T'something, but yes, alien names (and aliens in general) are pretty rare in Starfleet.

About the only show I've ever seen that did multi-species crew well was Farscape, and that was a special case within the show itself IIRC.
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2017-08-13 12:00am

Basically, the informal cultural hierarchy in the Federation seems to go:

Western/European Earth cultures.
Other Earth cultures/Vulcans.
Every other member world (though some, i.e. Betazeds, seem to have a bit more influence than others).
Border colonies (tend to be tiny, bland, and basically target practice of the week for aliens and anomalies).

This is, understandably, a problem.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Q99 » 2017-08-13 12:21am

Prometheus Unbound wrote:
2017-08-12 01:08pm
Q99 wrote:
2017-08-11 08:22am
The Federation's naming scheme really does seem to be Positive Sounding English Words.

With the exception of Runabouts- Danube class Runabouts are all rivers. Ganges, Yangtzee Kiang, and Rio Grande are the three first ones, but they blow up a ton. Gander, Mekong, Orinoco, Rubicon, Shenandoah, Volga, and Yukon.

IMO, if they do Asian names, it should probably be tied to a specific class. I.e. "All X class ships are named after Cities in Asia," or such,
Like the... Mekong, Okinawa, Khiku Maru, Kobeashi Maru, Tian An Men, Umibozu, Yangtzee Kiang, Akagi, Yamato, Hokkaido, Hiroshima, Kongo, and Kyushu?

Ok, I forgot about most of those, point retracted ^^

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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Prometheus Unbound » 2017-08-13 11:24am

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2017-08-12 11:23pm
How come no Federation ships with alien names, though? It gives the impression that the Federation really is... what did the Klingons call it? A Homo-sapiens only club?
Like the Gorkon, the Sarek, the ShirKahr, the Khitomer, the T'Kumbra, the G'Mat or the Surak? Then there's classes such as Andromeda, Antares, Galaxy, Nebula etc which are "alien" but non-specific.
NecronLord wrote:
Also, shorten your signature a couple of lines please.

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Elheru Aran
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Elheru Aran » 2017-08-13 11:10pm

Prometheus Unbound wrote:
2017-08-13 11:24am
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2017-08-12 11:23pm
How come no Federation ships with alien names, though? It gives the impression that the Federation really is... what did the Klingons call it? A Homo-sapiens only club?
Like the Gorkon, the Sarek, the ShirKahr, the Khitomer, the T'Kumbra, the G'Mat or the Surak? Then there's classes such as Andromeda, Antares, Galaxy, Nebula etc which are "alien" but non-specific.
How many of those are show/movie canon though? (the names, not the classes)
It's a strange world. Let's keep it that way.

Q99
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Q99 » 2017-08-15 08:56am

Hm, T'Kumbra is the Vulcan-crewed Nebula who challenged Sisko to baseball, so a fairly major one. Gorkon was the admiral's flagship in Descent.

ShirKahr was a Miranda fought in the Dominion war and was destroyed on-screen after a brief appearance- and I'll add the Sitak, another Miranda that died. G'Mat and Sarek were 'names on fleet roll' ships, as was K'Marc and D'hjty , an additional two I assume to be of alien name. I think Khitomer is from a game. Finally, the Star Trek Encyclopedia said Surak-class was a Federation ship class (plus there was a Vulcan shuttle, and a Vulcan ship class Suurak).

So, two significant ones, two minor-but-onscreen, four named-on-screen but not shown.

Patroklos
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Re: Star Trek discovery triggers alt right

Post by Patroklos » 2017-08-15 10:36am

I think some of you are letting your homocentrism show. Its quite obvious that Starfleet has settled on Terran English as their operating language, which means that just because a ships name is an English word doesn't mean it is referencing a Terran source.

I am sure lots of species have ships in their history, pre and post space flight, named Defiant. Do we actually know the source of the USS Defiant's name choice? Are you sure its not a translation of the storied Andorian Sea Destroyer Ullu'umlav&*?

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