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How Star Trek Explains Things to Viewers

How Star Trek Explains Things to Viewers

Or maybe the headline should more specifically read “how Voyager explains things to viewers.” Working techno jargon into naturalistic dialog and phrasing heady concepts in terms even casual viewers will understand is a constant challenge for sci-fi screenwriters. And, as this super cut reveals, the writing staff of the fourth Star Trek series found “some kind” of trick to get that done rather reliably. As in, at least two times an episode, on average. This dialog device was used to finesse everything, from complex phenoms like “dimensional distortions” and “elaborate kinetic transfer system[s]” to simple things like “problems” and “weapons.” Watch all 393 usages of this flourish throughout the show’s 172 episodes in this montage.

Of course, it isn’t like the the Next Generation didn’t have its own beats it liked to hit almost every episode. Lieutenant Worf’s role on the Enterprise’s crew was often to be the foil or the contrarian, putting forth extreme suggestions in almost every debate on bridge… and getting shot down repeatedly. Constantly. Reliably. So much so that every refusal nearly amounts to a 22-minute episode when edited together. Oh, poor Worf…

An actor must make various choices when crafting a character. And while he was figuring out how Riker should behave on deck, Jonanthan Frakes opted to give the Commander a… distinctive way of taking a seat. Perhaps he reasoned this was how people of the future would evolve to take their seats, and no other cast members followed his lead. Either way, while Riker didn’t hit this mark as often (we like to think he would if given the chance, though), he was at least consistent about it.

Have any other ticks in Star Trek tickled you? Have any of them gotten supercuts? Please share ’em in the talkback.

Featured Image Credit: Paramount

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