HTF REVIEW: "Star Trek: The Next Generation" Season Five (with screenshots)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ronald Epstein, Nov 11, 2002.

  1. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator

    Jul 3, 1997
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    Real Name:
    Ronald Epstein

    Star Trek: The Next Generation
    Season Five

    Studio: Paramount
    Year: 1991-1992
    Rated: NR
    Feature Length: 1183 minutes
    Aspect Ratio: Full Frame
    Subtitles: English

    Welcome to the 24th Century
    October 10, 1986, seventeen years after the
    cancellation of the original Star Trek series,
    Paramount launched a new generation of Star
    Trek with an all-new cast of characters. The
    show went on to have an Emmy award-winning
    seven-year run. It has become the best Star
    Trek series of all time.
    Paramount has just released the fifth season
    set of Star Trek The Next Generation, on their
    way to releasing all 7 seasons by year's end.
    Thus far, the release of these sets has been a
    rousing success for the studio, and they seem to
    improve with each release. In fact, more than
    any other studio television product, these sets
    always offer something exciting and new with each
    release -- from menu design to supplemental material.
    Star Trek TNG Season Five arrives as
    all previous seasons arrived, in a deluxe
    boxed 7-pane gatefold package that opens up to
    an impressive span, holding the entire fourth
    season laid out across 7 DVDs placed in plastic
    hub housing. A total of 26 episodes span this
    series, with each of the 6 discs containing four
    episodes each and the 7th disc containing two
    episodes + supplements. Paramount has also
    given the set its own unique appearance by giving
    the packaging a predominantly blue color scheme so
    that it can easily be differentiated from other
    On the flip side gatefold's end pocket sits a
    small pamphlet that opens to a 17 1/2" 2-sided
    fold-out. On the one side is a 4 page foldout that
    contains an artist's rendering of the entire cast.
    Flip the booklet over and you'll find a picture of
    one of Gene Roddenberry, who had died during the
    production of this season. There's a touching
    tribute given to the man responsible for creating
    the Star Trek universe. On the opposite pages,
    Episodes are listed in alphabetical order, complete
    with airdate, stardate, and what disc that episode
    appears on.
    Season Five was just as outstanding as the
    seasons that came before it. Once again, we watch
    the show's characters become more defined, such as
    in the episodes concerning the Klingons. We also see
    different sides of characters we never saw before.
    Picard becomes less rigid, as we watch one of the
    most memorable love stories of the series, The
    Inner Light
    . Then, if you can believe it, we
    watch the Federation's worst enemy become a little
    more humanized in I, Borg.
    To show you just how strong a season this truly
    was, I sampled three of the best episodes from this
    boxed set in order to get an idea of how good the
    audio and video quality presentation is.
    Unification, Part I & II
    Captain Picard is disturbed to learn that
    the legendary Vulcan, Mr. Spock, has gone on an
    unauthorized mission to the planet Romulus. He
    immediately travels to Vulcan to speak with Spock's
    father Sarek, a close friend with whom he shared a
    mind meld the year before. Picard beams down to
    Vulcan and finds Sarek, wracked by emotional pain
    and wasting away in his bed. The dying Vulcan
    tells Picard that his son may be in touch with the
    Romulan senator Pardek. He also asks Picard to convey
    his love to his son. Upon his return to the
    Enterprise, Picard summons the help of the Klingons
    in hopes of receiving an undetectable ship to use to
    travel to Romulus. Dressed as Romulans, Picard and
    Data find Spock, who confesses he is aware of a
    movement among the Romulan people towards Vulcan
    philosophy, and he has come to foster it. It is his
    hopes to provide the first step to the reunification
    of the Vulcans and the Romulans! But can the Romulans
    be trusted?
    The Inner Light
    This is one of my all-time favorite episodes! An
    unsophisticated alien probe assumes a relative
    position, holding steady with the U.S.S. Enterprise,
    and releases a nucleonic particle stream that
    penetrates the ship's shields. Focusing solely on
    Picard, the beam knocks him unconscious. When he
    wakes up, Picard finds himself in unfamiliar
    surroundings, being cared for by an attractive woman.
    As he lives the rest of his life caring for this
    woman and bringing up a family he never had, the
    crew of the Enterprise race against time to save
    their captain from the beam that is holding him
    I, Borg
    Picard sends an Away Team to investigate the
    wreckage of a small craft, where they find the
    only survivor is an adolescent Borg. The Captain
    initially shows no sign of wanting to help, however,
    Dr. Beverly eventually persuades to beam the creature
    aboard in spite of the fact that his presence on the
    ship could alert the rest of his race. As the Borg
    remains separated from the rest of his race, he
    learns more about the human race, slowly feeling
    a little more human himself.
    How is the transfer?
    The transfer quality of this set is on par with
    the improvements seen in Seasons Three and Four.
    Picture is clean and blemish free. There is very
    little background noise to be seen anywhere in the
    picture, and dark scenes are well detailed. My only
    complaint is that picture is far more soft than
    sharply detailed.
    Most any unusual noise in the picture comes in the
    expected areas during the opening and closing credits
    as well as some rainbow color banding in a few of the
    effects shots of spaceship flyovers. All of this is
    very minor, and I blame it on source elements.
    The 5.1 soundtrack is basically as good as it
    has been with all the other sets. The hum of the
    Enterprise's motors can always be heard in the
    rear channels, supplemented by a little bit of bass
    response through the LFE channel -- especially during
    spaceship flyovers. Surround effects, as usual, are
    never as distinct from channel to channel as a
    theatrical movie would be, with most of the effects
    remaining in the front channels instead of being
    evenly distributed to the rears.
    Special Features
    The DVD begins exactly as all previous seasons
    with an animated sequence that features the
    planet Saturn, as character faces dissolve in
    and out of the planet surface. With each new set,
    Paramount has made some slight modifications to
    the facial sequences used. The character faces
    remain the same, but they are taken from separate
    Paramount has done some tinkering with the main
    menu this time around, taking us into the holodeck
    before presenting us with the ship's main computer
    navigational menu.
    Welcome to the Main Menu that has been replicated
    to look like the ship's computer mainframe.
    The initial menu lists all the episodes and
    features appearing on that particular DVD.
    You will notice that Paramount has modified
    the menu structure to representing the ship's
    Once you select the episode, you have several
    options laid out before you. ENGAGE will
    immediately start the episode. COMMUNICATIONS
    lets you select either ENGLISH STEREO or ENGLISH
    5.1 SURROUND. It is here that you can also turn
    subtitles on, if you wish. CHAPTER LOG
    breaks the episode down by scenes, with individual
    picture stills allowing you to quickly access your
    favorite points in the episode.
    Disc 7 holds the DVD's extra content. Let's take
    a look at it....
    Stardate 45020.4 Welcome to Mission Logs: Year
    Five. This is the place you'll find an interesting
    blend of added material.
    Mission Overview once again begins with
    a triumphant overview of the fifth season featuring
    a montage of the that season's very best moments.
    What greater approval for the show's success than
    an appearance from Spock himself! Our Mission
    overview begins with an assortment of interviews
    from Patrick Stewart and Jonathan Frakes who talk
    about the honor of having the legendary character
    and actor who portrayed him amongst the new
    Enterprise cast. Since the episode, Unification
    was split into two segments, Producer/Writer
    Jeri Taylor talks about what it was like to write
    an entire first-part episode that was merely a
    build-up to the second one. The cast acknowledges
    that it was very important to have members of the
    old cast (such as DeForest Kelly) appear on the
    show, but it was more important that the show
    establish its own separate identity first. From
    hereon in, many of the show's most memorable episodes
    are fondly remembered by the cast, including
    Darmok, The Inner Light and I, Borg.
    (length: approx. 18 minutes)
    Departmental Briefing is divided into two
    main categories. In Production we look
    at some of the key episodes of the fifth season
    as well as the writers, directors and production
    team responsible for each. My favorite here is
    being introduced to Supervising Producer Peter
    Lauritson who recalls The Inner Light, one
    of the finest episodes of the season. Make-up
    Designer Micheal Westmore talks about how the
    progression of age was introduced through make-up.
    Visual Effects shows how far optical effects
    had improved through the various seasons. The
    toughest challenge for these effect artists was
    doing big-budget effects week after week. In
    fact, the show went from having 50 effects shots
    a week to 80 to 100 and so on. This meant that more
    people had to be brought aboard to deliver a quality
    show each week. In fact, separate teams
    alternated week by week on doing the enormous
    effects work. We are treated to some effects test
    footage that includes sizzling oatmeal that was
    used to represent a shot of the sun. Every week
    the effects team tried to better themselves from
    the previous one. The hard work usually always paid
    off, as Star Trek constantly was pushing the envelope
    on some of the freshest effects of its time.
    (length: approx. 16 minutes/18 minutes)
    Memorable Missions has the cast and crew
    reminiscing about their favorite episodes. In
    one of those things you really didn't need to know
    about, Mirina Sirtis talks about having to control
    what she ate in order to fit into her costume week
    after week. So how did she handle eating chocolate
    ice cream in The Game? Well, I won't be the
    person to tell that story. Producer David Livingston
    fondly remembers Power Play, an episode
    filled with action, shoot outs, and many optical
    effects. Music Composer Jay Chattaway talks about
    the Balinese gamelan instrument used in The
    Perfect Mate
    (length: approx. 18 minutes)
    Finally, a fitting Tribute to Gene Roddenberry
    that is not to be missed! It begins with cast members
    from the original and Next Generation series gathering
    on the Paramount lot to attend a dedication of the
    Gene Roddenberry building -- one that Gene never had
    the pleasure of moving into. This piece is filled
    with interviews from mostly the Next Generation cast
    who tearfully remember the man that became a science
    fiction television pioneer. Perhaps the most defining
    moment of this tribute comes from Roddenberry's
    surviving wife, Majel Barrett, who talks about Nasa
    contacting her, offering to send Roddenberry's ashes
    into space. Nothing can compare to the final tribute
    that Patrick Stewart gives following the credits.
    We love you, Gene!
    (length: approx. 28 minutes)
    Once again, Paramount goes where no other studio
    has gone before by providing subtitles on all its
    supplemental material. Bravo!
    Bonus Disc
    For the initial pressings of this season set,
    Paramount has included a Star Trek Nemesis
    3-inch CD-ROM that contains desktop wallpaper,
    screen savers...and oh yes....the trailer for the
    upcoming Star Trek Nemesis film.
    Final Thoughts
    Five down and two to go, and Paramount is still
    going strong with these boxed sets that never cease
    to reinvent themselves with each subsequential
    release. Not only does this season contain some
    of the finest episodes of the series, but the
    tribute to Gene Roddenberry alone is worth the purchase.
    Release Date: Now
  2. Paul McElligott

    Paul McElligott Cinematographer

    Jul 2, 2002
    Likes Received:
    Real Name:
    Paul McElligott
    You forgot to mention the other attraction to this set:
    Two of the episodes feature the major league television debut of a young Ashley Judd. [​IMG]
  3. Travis Hedger

    Travis Hedger Supporting Actor

    Mar 24, 1998
    Likes Received:
    Im still stuck on Season 1!!
    Not enough money!
    Anyone wanna buy my original Star Trek movies, 2-8? Khan to Insurrection? [​IMG]
  4. Denny_S

    Denny_S Stunt Coordinator

    Nov 11, 2001
    Likes Received:
    There is also a 'bonus' DVD packaged with the sets bought through Future Shop and Best Buy stores.
    Now all I have to do is find $125.00..............
    (+ another $110.00 for the X-Files set)[​IMG]
  5. Sam Davatchi

    Sam Davatchi Producer

    Sep 15, 1999
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    I got the Season 5 recently but I’m still watching Season 4. I see here for the first time that Spock appears in TNG. Never knew that! Man, I got to hurry finish 4 first. Hope that it’s one of the earlier episodes of the Season 5! [​IMG] That should be a big event! I mean it’s SSSSPPPPOOOOOCKKKK!
  6. Chris Farmer

    Chris Farmer Screenwriter

    Aug 23, 2002
    Likes Received:
    Nice review Ron, although I'm still in Season 2. I refuse to let myself buy the next season until I've finished the current one.
    BTW, there's a bad link on the main page to this review. It currently links to the forum's admin page, which fortunately is password protected. [​IMG]
  7. Paul McElligott

    Paul McElligott Cinematographer

    Jul 2, 2002
    Likes Received:
    Real Name:
    Paul McElligott
  8. Brenton

    Brenton Screenwriter

    Jun 25, 2002
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    It's unfortunate that I'm not enough of a Trek fan to warrant paying $100 a shot on these. I really would like to get them. Maybe I could rent them...
  9. Randy_M

    Randy_M Supporting Actor

    Oct 25, 2000
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    Peoria, AZ
    Real Name:
    Randy Margolis
    Has anybody seen hard numbers as to how these sets are selling? I would think every trek fan would have purchased all of them (I know I have)...

    Gotta be selling a ton...good for Paramount if they are!

    An effort this nice should be rewarded!
  10. Tim_P_76

    Tim_P_76 Second Unit

    Aug 8, 2001
    Likes Received:
    How is the overall transfer? Has it gotten better, at least since season 3 where there was a subtle change in image quality? I just finished season 3 and noticed some ghosting around the actors with the obvious softness and EE as well. Not to mention I noticed towards the end of season 3 there seems to be some interference in the picture like a scan line going through the image which is weird considering I didnt watch it on my TV[​IMG]..I would like to know if there is a continuing improvement with season 4 and 5.
  11. John Berggren

    John Berggren Producer

    Jun 17, 1999
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    This month I'm on a budget, so this one goes on the Christmas list. It's looking more and more like I'm taking DS9 off. I applaud Paramount for their release schedule, but I think I could have done with 3x per year.
  12. todd s

    todd s Lead Actor

    Jul 8, 1999
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    I disagree. I like the every other month release schedule. If I want them I can get them. If I don't I can wait, they are not on moratorium. I just wish Warner would do the same release schedule with Babylon 5 also.
  13. Dave Scarpa

    Dave Scarpa Producer

    Apr 8, 1999
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    Real Name:
    David Scarpa
    Watching these eps I can only say they may have changed the filming process for this season because your absolutely right on the softness of the transfer, it looks like they filmed using a gel over the lense. And every ep is like this. Season 4 definately looked better. But I'm not so sure it's the transfer, this is how the season may have looked. It's tough to tell on TNN since its compressed and always looks awful. Anyone have these on Laser want to compare the transfers?
  14. Sam Davatchi

    Sam Davatchi Producer

    Sep 15, 1999
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    Oh my, oh my. I had the misfortune of watching “The Game” episode for the first time tonight. I’m wondering what other people think about this episode. It was bad, real bad!
    This had never happened to me before. To this today, I have seen the entire episodes from start to this point and I never hated any episode! Sure there were lots of so so episodes but this episode was quite embarrassing. I name it the worst episode of TNG ever (to this point). No other episode comes close to it!
    Wesley never bothered me before but him saving everyone (really everyone) and seeing all our favorite characters like idiots was painful. I think I got some serious brain damage. I think I have to stop watching TNG for few nights before healing completely. Very unfortunate because I was looking forward to see Spock in the next episode. I hope none of the future episodes get like this! [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
  15. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

    Mar 16, 1999
    Likes Received:
    I was wondering if anyone noticed a minor glitch with this set. I often skip the titles right after the teaser to the first act. On the episode, "Cause and Effect", if I use the skip button to jump to the first act it skips to a later chapter. One other episode did this. All others are okay.

  16. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

    Jun 3, 1999
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    Nope, Nelson, I watch the entire episode, including the teaser and the opening titles. I never skip at all while watching an ep.
  17. Anthony Hom

    Anthony Hom Supporting Actor

    Mar 24, 1999
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    I think you misunderstood Nelson. He meant to say that if he hits the chapter advance so as not to see the chapter that has the opening titles, it normally will go the FOLLOWING CHAPTER, which will start off with the show after the titles. Instead, he is saying that it jumps to the chapter stop after that one.
  18. Paul McElligott

    Paul McElligott Cinematographer

    Jul 2, 2002
    Likes Received:
    Real Name:
    Paul McElligott
  19. John Berggren

    John Berggren Producer

    Jun 17, 1999
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    To each his own. "The Game" is one of my all time favorite TNG episodes.
  20. Sam Davatchi

    Sam Davatchi Producer

    Sep 15, 1999
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