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General Discussion => Spaceflight Entertainment and Hobbies => Topic started by: sanman on 07/24/2018 11:41 am

Title: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: sanman on 07/24/2018 11:41 am
Here's the preview:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lavy7qZ1aoo

Should be coming in late December. Apparently, there's a new character joining the cast, too.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: demonslayer on 07/28/2018 02:57 am
Is this series similar to Dark matter?

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Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: spacenut on 07/28/2018 01:17 pm
It is actually more like Star Trek but has a lot of comedy. 
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: edkyle99 on 07/28/2018 01:55 pm
Speculation in the industry that Halston Sage (Lieutenant Alara Kitan) may not appear much in Season 2.  She was shooting a movie at the same time that The Orville was filming.   

 - Ed Kyle
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: gladiator1332 on 07/29/2018 02:20 pm
Is this series similar to Dark matter?

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The easy way to explain it would be Star Trek TNG meets Family Guy, but I know the latter would probably keep some away. Just know for the most part it sticks closer to TNG - think of it more like a bunch of current day TNG fans are thrown on the USS Enterprise - this is probably how they would behave / talk vs the dry, proper behavior seen on TNG.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Blackstar on 07/29/2018 03:00 pm
The easy way to explain it would be Star Trek TNG meets Family Guy, but I know the latter would probably keep some away.

It is a Seth McFarlane fan film. He always wanted to play the captain in Star Trek, and now he does.

The tone has been all over the place. At times it was serious, at other times it was just childish and goofy, and at other times it was a parody. I think they could go with mostly-serious but with light-hearted jokes, but that's not McFarlane's style. It will be interesting to see if they actually pick a tone and stick with it for the second season.

Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: sanman on 08/05/2018 12:40 am
Well, the many moods and multi-faceted vibe of the show makes it more interesting and less boring, while making it harder to fall into self-parody (a notorious problem for successful franchises like Star Trek).

Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: docmordrid on 08/05/2018 03:52 am
We enjoyed The Orville S1-07 "Majority Rule", an episode which portrays the social media up/down votes gone mad.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: sanman on 10/31/2018 06:09 pm
More preview material from The Orville - Season 2:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wyKp5LDv3sE


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bk0BpQfbGns
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Cheapchips on 10/31/2018 07:46 pm
I've watched season one.  I was surprised by how entertaining it was.  The comedy is a bit too much sometimes, but it's a great love love letter to The Next Generation style sci-fi.  To a large extent, it's the comedy that lets them get away with doing TNG style stories. 

Definitely giving S2 ago when it arrives in the UK.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: sanman on 12/24/2018 01:59 am
Yes, that time has finally arrived - the time for Season 2 of The Orville!   :D

Here's a curtain-raiser preview talk by Seth MacFarlane:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wl37s46_ahI

First episode of Season 2 will be airing on December 30
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Peter912 on 02/15/2019 04:13 pm
 I didn't understand the latest episode. Why was Bortis responsible for what happened to the Moklin Engineer ?
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: schaban on 02/15/2019 04:23 pm
I've watched season one.  I was surprised by how entertaining it was.  The comedy is a bit too much sometimes, but it's a great love love letter to The Next Generation style sci-fi.  To a large extent, it's the comedy that lets them get away with doing TNG style stories. 

Definitely giving S2 ago when it arrives in the UK.

unexpected side-effect for me is that it actually hooked me on Star Trek. Was trying to get into it before Orville, but couldn't watch for more then couple minutes. Just didn't click.

after Orville season 1, was looking for a "fix" and finally got into Star Trek. Go figure...

also I see why fans of original Star Trek (all of them) not that hyped about Orville. See way too many lifted ideas and even screenshots. Still entertaining nonetheless.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Blackstar on 02/15/2019 04:40 pm
I didn't understand the latest episode. Why was Bortis responsible for what happened to the Moklin Engineer ?

He wasn't. His mate was. His mate threatened to turn the engineer in to the authorities, which is what prompted the engineer to fake his own death. When caught, he was given the option of seeking asylum, which he declined, and so he will spend the rest of his life in jail for sexual deviancy.

Bortis has previously protected the engineer. He could have reported him when he discovered him years earlier, but he did not because he loved him. Note that this is now the second time Bortis has had a major disagreement with his mate, and both times it has been about how his society reacts to females. If the show has courage, they'll show real consequences to that.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: SimonFD on 02/15/2019 04:48 pm
I didn't understand the latest episode. Why was Bortis responsible for what happened to the Moklin Engineer ?

He wasn't. His mate was. His mate threatened to turn the engineer in to the authorities, which is what prompted the engineer to fake his own death. When caught, he was given the option of seeking asylum, which he declined, and so he will spend the rest of his life in jail for sexual deviancy.

Bortis has previously protected the engineer. He could have reported him when he discovered him years earlier, but he did not because he loved him. Note that this is now the second time Bortis has had a major disagreement with his mate, and both times it has been about how his society reacts to females. If the show has courage, they'll show real consequences to that.

Beware spoilers as I don't think that episode has aired in the UK yet.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: ugordan on 02/15/2019 05:24 pm
also I see why fans of original Star Trek (all of them) not that hyped about Orville.

Not sure where you get that "all of them". I grew up on ST:TNG and I like the Orville. The show is pretty obviously a love letter to Star Trek and it's got that TNG vibe except the crew act like normal people and not those Star Fleet uber officers without any flaws.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: spacenut on 02/15/2019 05:39 pm
I've seen all of the original Star Trek and movies, the Next Generation, Voyager, Deep Space Nine, and Enterprise.  I liked Enterprise best, followed by the original.  In Enterprise, they are discovering all the new races, and solving problems later Star Treks used, like Red Alerts, phaser installation, photon torpedo installation, radiation linings, to the formation of The Federation. 

I do like Orville, it is much like Star Trek, but a little more crude and dealing with the weird issues of today. 
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: schaban on 02/15/2019 05:53 pm
also I see why fans of original Star Trek (all of them) not that hyped about Orville.

Not sure where you get that "all of them". I grew up on ST:TNG and I like the Orville. The show is pretty obviously a love letter to Star Trek and it's got that TNG vibe except the crew act like normal people and not those Star Fleet uber officers without any flaws.

sorry, should've be more specific. "all of them" means all versions of Star Trek: original, next generation, deep space 9, enterprise, discovery...

Edit: figured where confusion was
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Coastal Ron on 02/15/2019 06:14 pm
also I see why fans of original Star Trek (all of them) not that hyped about Orville.

Not sure where you get that "all of them". I grew up on ST:TNG and I like the Orville. The show is pretty obviously a love letter to Star Trek and it's got that TNG vibe except the crew act like normal people and not those Star Fleet uber officers without any flaws.

sorry, should've be more specific. "all of them" means all versions of Star Trek: original, next generation, deep space 9, enterprise, discovery...

Edit: figured where confusion was

The problem with broad declarations is that there are exceptions - or who knows, maybe they are the majority. It's hard to tell without spending lots of money to do a real survey.

I grew up on the original Star Trek (loved it), loved ST:TNG, didn't like ST:DS9, did like Voyager, and really liked Enterprise.

I have watched some of the Orville and think it is a really good show, and obviously a humorous take on the whole genre. I don't watch it regularly, but that is because of other competing priorities, not because it's not worthy.

Hard to compare a modern show against something that is up to 50 years old, especially when even back then we'd laugh at the "special effects"...  :D
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Peter912 on 02/15/2019 08:49 pm
I didn't understand the latest episode. Why was Bortis responsible for what happened to the Moklin Engineer ?

He wasn't. His mate was. His mate threatened to turn the engineer in to the authorities, which is what prompted the engineer to fake his own death. When caught, he was given the option of seeking asylum, which he declined, and so he will spend the rest of his life in jail for sexual deviancy.

Bortis has previously protected the engineer. He could have reported him when he discovered him years earlier, but he did not because he loved him. Note that this is now the second time Bortis has had a major disagreement with his mate, and both times it has been about how his society reacts to females. If the show has courage, they'll show real consequences to that.

 Sorry, I got their names mixed up, I meant to say Clyde and not Bortis. What I didn't understand was why the security officer blamed Clyde. The Captain of the Starship didn't have to tell the Moklins what happened and also the engineer should have accepted the amnesty offer.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Blackstar on 02/15/2019 11:45 pm
Sorry, I got their names mixed up, I meant to say Clyde and not Bortis. What I didn't understand was why the security officer blamed Clyde. The Captain of the Starship didn't have to tell the Moklins what happened and also the engineer should have accepted the amnesty offer.

She blamed him because he threatened to expose the engineer, which prompted the engineer to fake his own death.

Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: sanman on 02/18/2019 11:11 pm
So this episode reminded me of some famous Trek episodes from the past.

There was a famous episode from TOS (The Original trek Series) where Kirk is framed for murder by a jealous but clever rival:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CVfFWs4BKBE


There was a famous episode of ST:TNG done around Jonathan Frakes (Ryker) and Melinda Culea (formerly of the A-Team). That episode framed a particular social issue in what I thought was a very artful way, demonstrating how science fiction can provide a powerful canvas to paint on - or mirror to hold up to us.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mMqGlSjAbwA


(Sorry, I didn't put either of those in spoiler tags - if you haven't seen them by now, then you're too far behind to care about spoilers)
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Blackstar on 02/19/2019 01:24 am
There was a famous episode of ST:TNG done around Jonathan Frakes (Ryker) and Melinda Culea (formerly of the A-Team). That episode framed a particular social issue in what I thought was a very artful way, demonstrating how science fiction can provide a powerful canvas to paint on - or mirror to hold up to us.

Yes, it was very Star Trek-like in its metaphors. You could include some other episodes too, like "Let That Be Your Last Battlefield."

Although I thought "Deflectors" was good, it was also a bit too obvious, a little too blatant, both in terms of the plot twist (which I figured out about 2 seconds after it happened) and the metaphor. That said, it was elevated by the acting (particularly the actors who play Bortas and the security officer) and by the longer story arc about the Moklans, whose culture is creating some consternation for the humans.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: YesRushGen on 02/19/2019 06:20 pm
So this episode reminded me of some famous Trek episodes from the past.

...


The Wife and I had the EXACT same two connections! In fact, when they were searching for the Moklan engineer, we both said, "they need the heartbeat monitor from Court Martial!"
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: docmordrid on 02/22/2019 04:08 pm
Last night The Orville had its 'Borg moment' come out of deep left field. Oh-wow moments to be resolved next week, maybe. Or not.

Damn....didn't see that one coming...
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Eric Hedman on 02/23/2019 04:40 am
I watched it too.  It was a bit unexpected.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Blackstar on 02/23/2019 03:13 pm
They've clearly made some changes to the show. They have adopted a much more consistent tone--it's now mostly a drama with comedic elements. They've dialed back the jokes. And they've also dialed way back on the goofiness. They used to have goofy subplots, but now it seems like they confine the goofy aspects to specific characters who are not part of the main plot but little more than cameos (like the talking flower). Note, for instance, that Yaphit, the green goo guy played by Norm MacDonald, was in most of the season 1 episodes, but has barely appeared in season 2, and hasn't been part of any "oooohhh... he's made of goo..." jokes.

The writing has also been more consistent and I think a lot better than first season. And they've decided to adopt the Star Trek theme of doing social commentary in a sci-fi setting. (As an aside, I get a kick out of the conservative/libertarian vloggers on YouTube who complain about all the "social justice" and "woke" messaging in other shows like Star Trek: Discovery. They love The Orville, but seem oblivious to some of the rather heavy-handed messaging in the episodes. Last week's episode was a thinly-veiled metaphor about discrimination against the gay and transgender communities, and yet I haven't seen any diatribes about that yet. Maybe the answer is that as long as the captain is a white male, these vloggers don't get triggered.)

Still, The Orville is a throwback format and style for a sci-fi show. If you compare it to shows like Battlestar Galactica, Firefly, The Expanse, Westworld, and anthology shows like Black Mirror, The Orville is nothing new or original or edgy and really feels a lot like much older episodic shows. It feels like Star Trek: The Next Generation, which ended over 25 years ago. It doesn't take huge risks in the format or the story-telling. They're always returning to the same bridge, in the same galactic union, with most of their problems solved by the time the credits roll.

That said, sometimes all you want for lunch is a hamburger, not filet mignon, and The Orville is turning into a pretty good hamburger, with less cheese than last season. And whereas you almost came to expect the unexpected from those other shows, The Orville has been more conventional, which means that a surprise like the recent one has a greater impact. I only hope that they can keep it up.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: sanman on 02/24/2019 04:01 am
Quite the unsettling episode. When we saw the Firestorm episode back in Season 1, that was quite the jarring episode too, but at least it resolved itself in a fairly clean way.

I don't see how this latest episode is going to resolve itself so cleanly - unless Claire wakes up from a bad dream to find Isaac in the shower, Dallas-style.

At least they're taking risks, and not looking to pull their punches.

Maybe this was an homage to another Roddenberry TV serial - Earth: Final Conflict. When The Orville first introduced us to Isaac and his civilization the Kaylons, their name immediately reminded me of the Taelons, the mysterious aliens in this other show from Roddenberry.
[spoiler]The Taelons likewise embedded themselves among the humans while having an ulterior agenda for invasion and takeover. So maybe Isaac's character was conceived with this ultimate plot arc in mind for him from the start.[/spoiler]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lq_jDl_s8_Y#t=21s
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: docmordrid on 02/24/2019 07:24 pm
I think Seth MacFarlane has lulled us into the early  TNG/DS9 security of series  where all will end well, then he dropped both the Borg and Dominion War on us in one series episode. Risky. I like it.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Lar on 02/24/2019 10:43 pm
I kinda saw it coming when Issac was first introduced. Can't expect alien bots to have the 3 Laws wired in. But the exact timing of this caught me off guard.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: sanman on 02/24/2019 11:47 pm
We've all seen this idea before in various forms - all of this has happened before, and all of this shall happen again:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXmTEciA7Mw


But even still, [spoiler]Isaac wasn't  just some Cylon or Dalek - he was a much loved member of the crew, like Lt Cmdr Data from TNG. To see him go bad, or reveal an inner evil that had been present all along right under everyone's noses, was really an eye-opener.[/spoiler]
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Eric Hedman on 02/25/2019 12:32 am
I do see an obvious possible resolution to this if they want it done in two parts (not going to post as a spoiler in case I guessed right).  If they are going to have this as a continuing story line, then I have no clue how they intend to resolve this.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: sanman on 02/25/2019 04:29 am
When it came to the Moklan gender bias problem, they didn't resolve that, and we can see from the previous episode how the problem continues to grate.
When it came to the animus/vendetta with the Krill, that too remains unresolved, and will likely come back to haunt future episodes.

But this character was one of my favorite characters in the show. If we don't get them back, then it will leave a big hole in our hearts.

"I am Locutus of Borg"
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Wicky on 02/26/2019 09:44 pm
Never trusted Cybermen going way back... it's in the eyes

(https://cl.ly/2a03cb0e8e09/Cybermen.jpg)
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Blackstar on 03/04/2019 06:36 pm
Spoilers

(but if you're reading this, then you're already taking a risk that you could have avoided by not clicking on it, right?)




I'll admit to being disappointed by part 2. They set up a big premise: Kaylon invasion force headed to Earth! And then in the end they (mostly) defeated the Kaylons, there was a partnership (not yet an "alliance") with the Krill, Isaac is back, and they're going to carry on with their other plotlines. So really, they pulled their punches, and the storylines are continuing along their previously-established trajectories, not changing radically. After all, Ed already proposed that the Terrans and the Krill could someday become allies, so that's not new. And once they establish a character as likeable, like Isaac was, they're not about to kill him off. In fact, they haven't killed off any main character yet. Also, by not wiping out the Kaylons, we know that they will be back at some point, right?

If they had wanted to be bold, they could have had Issac kill the kid, be full evil, get eliminated, and wiped out the Kaylons, thus mixing up everything and getting a lot darker. That's the kind of stuff we get from streaming and cable sci-fi, but not what we're going to get from a network show.

I do think they've improved season 2 a lot. They've cut back on the humor, eliminated most of the goofiness, and settled on overall story arcs with a focus on character development. The production values are high, the acting is pretty good (replacing Alara with Talla, an older--and better--actress was a good call), and they've established a consistent tone for the episodes. The way they have developed the Moklans and the Krill has been clever. The Moklans have a code and rules, and they make humans very uncomfortable. The Krill have a religious superiority complex, but it actually makes a certain amount of sense.

The Orville is a well-produced show. But it's also a network show, which means that they're not going to take bold risks (like killing a kid, or even killing off a major character), and it still feels like a television show from the 1990s, when there has been a lot more innovative and interesting and experimental science fiction television since then. Is The Orville doing anything new or original? No. But then again, sometimes all you want is a hamburger with some cheese, not a gourmet meal.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Lar on 03/04/2019 11:52 pm
Yeah, you can get mad at the neat and tidy packaging and the avoiding darkness.. or you can just enjoy the ride. It's a love letter, not The Watchmen of its genre trying to set the tropes on their ears in a literary and pretentious way.

I'm enjoying the ride. It's a really GOOD hamburger.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Blackstar on 03/08/2019 05:35 pm
This is actually a pretty good overview of the first season and its problems. He poses an interesting observation: McFarlane wanted to make a serious show, but was forced to add the comedy because Fox told him to because that's what everybody expects of McFarlane. That would explain why it is toned down so much in the second season, because once they were renewed, McFarlane was actually able to make the show that he really wanted to make, which was really just an extension of Star Trek: The Next Generation.

And as he notes, the comedy often didn't work in the first season: they would do a serious, emotional scene, and then undercut it with a dick joke. The jokes are also not inherent to the premise but tacked onto the story and don't contribute to the character arcs (here he makes a good comparison to Galaxy Quest, where the comedy was inherent in the premise--what if the Star Trek cast found themselves actually on a spaceship?). It created a wildly inconsistent tone.

Season 2, however, changed up a lot of that. They dramatically reduced the jokes, and they focused on character development and story arcs. Alas, there seem to be a lot of fans who are unhappy with the reduction in jokes and don't like season 2. Season 2's ratings are also down compared to the first season. I personally think that the second season has been much better.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q9OJmmmoNXM

Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: haywoodfloyd on 03/08/2019 05:59 pm
I also find the second season much more enjoyable than the first.
I too expected a laugh fest when I first started watching it because of Seth McFarlane but he has pulled off a serious, albeit an enjoyable series.
I'm sure if allowed it will continue to get better.
Just look how bad the first 10 episodes of STNG were.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Blackstar on 03/08/2019 08:12 pm
Just look how bad the first 10 episodes of STNG were.

Many shows have rocky first seasons. Actors need to figure out how to play their characters. I've heard writers describe how that's an interactive/iterative process: the writer has to figure out who the character is and what they'll say, and that is partly based on the qualities and strengths of an actor and how they deliver their lines. As an example, if an actor just isn't any good delivering jokes, then you don't write jokes for them.

Here's another take on the show:

https://www.theverge.com/2019/3/7/18254737/identity-the-orville-star-trek-seth-macfarlane-two-part-episode-science-fiction?fbclid=IwAR03blRGwJmRWo1LFmpU6EVI2jY31TlycaELLInplkvfwELViN3yHoho42s

Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Blackstar on 04/14/2019 03:56 pm
This show continues and the second half of the season 2 has been even stronger than the first half. It's also clear that they have really backed off on the humor. The most recent episode had maybe five jokes or less (the joke about crashing a shuttle into a tree, the Dolly Parton song joke, and a small one where Ed failed to get the admiral's hint about communications being garbled were the only ones I noticed).

The two-parter with the race of AI robots who are now a serious threat not only to Earth but to the other members of their federation, was not only good, but brought together a bunch of other storylines, like the new approach to the enemy Krill.

The most recent episode paid off an earlier setup about the Moklans oppressing their females when it turns out that there is a colony of females living in hiding. That was a clever way to extrapolate that if a) the females were oppressed, and b) not all the males in their society agreed with this oppression, there might very well be an underground railroad and a hidden colony. (In fact, there could be more than one, and the others are still kept secret.)

I'm interested in watching the fan reaction to this show. For a couple of years now there has been a rather noisy group of bloggers/vloggers (on YouTube) who have blasted Star Trek: Discovery for being too liberal/progressive, and praised The Orville for "doing it right." Their criticism seemed to be that Discovery was cramming a "social justice" message down viewers' throats, whereas The Orville did not. But season two of The Orville has had a lot of what one could consider social message episodes about gays in society, intolerance, and the oppression of various groups based upon their gender or their behavior. My impression is that this has not gone over well with the fans who were previously praising The Orville. Their enthusiasm for the show seems to have waned at the same time that the writing has improved significantly (and the humor has been reduced significantly).

Overall, the ratings on season 2 haven't been all that great, and if the show had been more highly rated it would have been renewed for a third season by now. I would blame part of that ratings drop to the fact that Fox waited a year to bring back the show. But you can see a steady erosion of the ratings over the first season and it seems to have stabilized out by the middle of the second season.

http://www.cancelledscifi.com/sci-fi-tv-shows/The-Orville/

Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: sanman on 04/14/2019 08:20 pm
This show continues and the second half of the season 2 has been even stronger than the first half. It's also clear that they have really backed off on the humor. The most recent episode had maybe five jokes or less (the joke about crashing a shuttle into a tree, the Dolly Parton song joke, and a small one where Ed failed to get the admiral's hint about communications being garbled were the only ones I noticed).

I'd read somewhere that MacFarlane had originally started out wanting to make a purely serious TNG-style series, but that studio executives pressured him toward the comedy route, because his own name-brand and fan-base were so strongly associated with comedy. Perhaps now that he's proven his ability to make a Trek-like show that can stand on classical merits of its own, he can now gradually shed the comedy. That being said, some level of comedy isn't bad -- especially when so much Trek has already been done that it naturally evokes self-parody -- but also because it helps to lighten the tone so that the show doesn't otherwise end up feeling too stiff and wooden.


Quote
The two-parter with the race of AI robots who are now a serious threat not only to Earth but to the other members of their federation, was not only good, but brought together a bunch of other storylines, like the new approach to the enemy Krill.

The most recent episode paid off an earlier setup about the Moklans oppressing their females when it turns out that there is a colony of females living in hiding. That was a clever way to extrapolate that if a) the females were oppressed, and b) not all the males in their society agreed with this oppression, there might very well be an underground railroad and a hidden colony. (In fact, there could be more than one, and the others are still kept secret.)

I'm interested in watching the fan reaction to this show. For a couple of years now there has been a rather noisy group of bloggers/vloggers (on YouTube) who have blasted Star Trek: Discovery for being too liberal/progressive, and praised The Orville for "doing it right." Their criticism seemed to be that Discovery was cramming a "social justice" message down viewers' throats, whereas The Orville did not. But season two of The Orville has had a lot of what one could consider social message episodes about gays in society, intolerance, and the oppression of various groups based upon their gender or their behavior. My impression is that this has not gone over well with the fans who were previously praising The Orville. Their enthusiasm for the show seems to have waned at the same time that the writing has improved significantly (and the humor has been reduced significantly).

MacFarlane seems to be very aggressive with his social messaging agenda, to the point where he sometimes lacks nuance, and ends up beating you over the head with it.
Even that recent episode "Deflectors" had the very sudden romance between the security officer and the Moklan guest engineer, where there was no natural buildup to it -- just a sudden hey-they're-together -- which felt contrived and forced.
Meanwhile, I notice that the Orville is almost becoming a Love Boat for cameos by former famous stars (Admiral Ted Danson, Admiral Kelly Hu, Doctor Robert Picardo, etc). Wasn't Patrick Stewart supposed to show up at some point - or is that still in the future?

I liked the Krill episodes, especially with the female Krill - was that actually the same actress playing both the Krill and human avatars of the same person?

Quote
Overall, the ratings on season 2 haven't been all that great, and if the show had been more highly rated it would have been renewed for a third season by now. I would blame part of that ratings drop to the fact that Fox waited a year to bring back the show. But you can see a steady erosion of the ratings over the first season and it seems to have stabilized out by the middle of the second season.

http://www.cancelledscifi.com/sci-fi-tv-shows/The-Orville/

So it doesn't show as cancelled - phew! You worried me there, for a moment.
They should be able to outlast Discovery, at least. The inclusion of these resurfacing plot elements for extended story arcs is likely to keep a continuity woven into the show, to keep us coming back for more.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Blackstar on 04/14/2019 09:11 pm
I'd read somewhere that MacFarlane had originally started out wanting to make a purely serious TNG-style series, but that studio executives pressured him toward the comedy route, because his own name-brand and fan-base were so strongly associated with comedy. Perhaps now that he's proven his ability to make a Trek-like show that can stand on classical merits of its own, he can now gradually shed the comedy. That being said, some level of comedy isn't bad -- especially when so much Trek has already been done that it naturally evokes self-parody -- but also because it helps to lighten the tone so that the show doesn't otherwise end up feeling too stiff and wooden.

That may be true, although I'd like to see that from him directly. I do think there's a place for humor in this show and it is best if it is the characters making quips rather than totally goofball elements. And they seem to have taken that tack with season 2: there's very little that's goofball. That can also help them with the serious drama, because it provides a relief valve.
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Blackstar on 04/14/2019 09:25 pm
MacFarlane seems to be very aggressive with his social messaging agenda, to the point where he sometimes lacks nuance, and ends up beating you over the head with it.
Even that recent episode "Deflectors" had the very sudden romance between the security officer and the Moklan guest engineer, where there was no natural buildup to it -- just a sudden hey-they're-together -- which felt contrived and forced.
Meanwhile, I notice that the Orville is almost becoming a Love Boat for cameos by former famous stars (Admiral Ted Danson, Admiral Kelly Hu, Doctor Robert Picardo, etc). Wasn't Patrick Stewart supposed to show up at some point - or is that still in the future?

Yeah, at times it has been too blunt where they could have been a bit more subtle. We don't need "THIS IS A SOCIAL ANALOGY" blaring at us. But I think that the sudden romance you mention was not really the blunt part of that episode. It needed a little more cleverness in the main plot. That said, they were obviously going for a story arc with Bortas and Klyden--Klyden's intolerance was clearly going to annoy Bortas. That played out well in the most recent episode where Bortas finally called him on it, noting that Klyden does not interact with the rest of the crew and did not even acknowledge the presence of Kelly because she's female. I think part of the problem is that the show has characters tell us things when they should show us things and let the audience draw conclusions.

As for the increasing cameos by Trek regulars, it is getting a bit silly by now. I dislike MacFarlane (because his previous work has been, in my view, ribald bordering on disgusting at times), but it is clear that lots of people in Hollywood like working with him. Dunno why that is. Maybe he throws great parties.



Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Blackstar on 04/14/2019 09:30 pm
So it doesn't show as cancelled - phew! You worried me there, for a moment.
They should be able to outlast Discovery, at least. The inclusion of these resurfacing plot elements for extended story arcs is likely to keep a continuity woven into the show, to keep us coming back for more.

Well, Discovery has already been renewed and The Orville has not (yet). The economics are also different for these shows. Discovery may have lower ratings, but it is a tent pole show for CBS's streaming service. The Orville needs advertising dollars. Different equations, although we don't now what the pain tolerance is for CBS vs. Fox. As I noted above, there is a group of rather virulent bloggers/vloggers who seem to have a lot of hate for Discovery and at least for the first season loved The Orville. I've seen some of them proclaiming the former as a failure already, even though it might actually continue beyond The Orville. This is all just part of a larger culture war that in my view is rather tiring. Can't we just enjoy stuff without having to tear down the things that other people enjoy?
Title: Re: The Orville - Season 2
Post by: Oli on 04/14/2019 09:54 pm
The writing in season 2 is rather bland and predictable. Or maybe the show's flaws have become more apparent now that it tries to be serious.