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Greg Kirkman
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Posted: 24 July 2017 at 10:08pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

ENTERPISE looked really sharp on netflix. Better tech?
++++++++++

The show was produced and mastered for HD, although many of the effects shots were still rendered in SD.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 25 July 2017 at 5:28am | IP Logged | 2 post reply

Someday someone will mention 10th Century Byzantine needlework, and we'll find out that Kirkman is an expert on that, too!!
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Greg Kirkman
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Posted: 25 July 2017 at 8:35am | IP Logged | 3 post reply

I sewed together a decorative pillow and a stuffed cat plushie for 7th grade Home Economics class, and occasionally sew buttons back onto my pants. That's all I got!
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Shane Matlock
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Posted: 25 July 2017 at 11:32pm | IP Logged | 4 post reply

The TNG Blu-Rays look gorgeous, from what I've seen. But, at the end of the day, they're an early-2000s recreation of the original work from the original elements. Mistakes have been fixed. Details changed. In-jokes--not easily visible in SD--removed for HD. While the remastered episodes are lovely to watch, and preserve the overall content and viewing experience of the show, they still technically don't represent the original work of the original editors, visual effects compositors, etc. 

****

I wasn't aware that they'd done that much tinkering during the conversion process. If that's the case, I'll just be content with my SD versions of DS9 and Voyager. 
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Greg Kirkman
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Posted: 26 July 2017 at 12:20am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

http://www.ex-astris-scientia.org/observations/tng-r-changes .htm
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Shane Matlock
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Posted: 26 July 2017 at 6:42pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply

Thanks for the link, Greg. Most of those changes aren't too bad honestly. It doesn't look like any are of the George Lucas Greedo shot first variety of changing the actual story.
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Rob Ocelot
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Posted: 26 July 2017 at 7:24pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

I had no idea Babylon 5 has made that much money in DVD sales.

Keep in mind that's over a 15 year span and the packaging was changed once to slim down the boxes.  Most DVDs don't stay in print anywhere near that long.  There's a saying in show business: "It's not what you've done for me, but what have you done for me *lately*?".  A slow-burning perennial seller like B5 wont boost some exec's pay bonus for this quarter or get them noticed -- so they will never take the risk and spearhead a restoration project.  A billion selling B5 on DVD is a very different situation than say, releasing a half-billion dollar grossing summer blockbuster that cleans up for the current financial quarter.

Beyond the Hollywood accounting, the other factor working against B5's favor is the live action footage was shot digitally in widescreen (which was *way* ahead of the curve) but only in SD resolution.  Of course they had no way of knowing how TV would end up 25 years later.  SD resolution can be upscaled to HD but the results can vary.  Complicating this are the CG effects shots, which were only made for 4:3 aspect ratio.  It's not a big problem for the effects-only shots -- they could be redone completely in widescreen CG, but the composite shots where CG is mixed with live action would need to be reconstructed from the ground up.  Very expensive and time consuming.   All of this of course hinges on the original footage/film elements actually existing and existing in good quality.

If Babylon 5, which has a lot smaller fan base than even the worst received Star Trek series, has made a billion dollars in DVD set sales it seems like it would be worth it to upgrade DS9 and Voyager to a format that almost guarantees DVD/bluray sales from the fans of those shows.

Yep.  It could happen.   I'd be very curious to see how well TNG and TOS sold on Blu-Ray.   Remember, Hollywood only cares about what immediate profits can be made from this project -- how much is it going to cost and how much money it actually made.   The fact that TNG can now be exploited in HD for years or decades to come was never a factor in the original decision to restore it.  There's another added bonus:  They now have all the elements and camera directions to upgrade TNG to even higher resolutions, to the limit of the original film without having to reinvent the wheel.   This will be making the parent company (whoever that may be) money for a long time, and the exec who greenlit the project likely got his bonus for the quarter and moved on to something else.  

I wouldn't be surprised if they were a bit more cautious with DS9 and VOY in HD.  They might put out the first season of each as a test and go from there.   No where near the fish in a barrel that was TNG or TOS.

It's worth nothing that when TNG was being released on DVD Paramount played it safe and released *Season 3* first, to see how it would sell, and then followed up with Seasons 1 and 2.   When they released TNG on Bluray... they started at Season 1, to give you an idea of their confidence in sales the second time around.

A fan's perspective would probably be that TNG on DVD is a no-brainer seller.  A show business exec on the other hand doesn't think like a fan.  (at least not until JJ Abrams became top dog)


Edited by Rob Ocelot on 26 July 2017 at 7:32pm
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Greg Kirkman
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Posted: 26 July 2017 at 8:18pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

Thanks for the link, Greg. Most of those changes aren't too bad honestly. It doesn't look like any are of the George Lucas Greedo shot first variety of changing the actual story.
+++++

No, not at all. My only gripe is that it simply isn't the original work of the original creators, warts and all. But, the viewing experience is virtually identical, but now with the vibrancy of HD. I'll probably get around to picking the set up, someday.

TOS is a different story, of course, since some of the new effects do rather dramatically change how the episodes play. BUT, the original visual effects are also included on the Blu-Rays, so all it takes is the push of a button to watch the original versions of the episodes. 

And, that CG model just isn't the Enterprise. Even setting aside the nitpicky fact that they got certain details wrong (missing windows, incorrect hull font, etc.), the CG ship isn't colored correctly, isn't lit correctly, and doesn't always move correctly. I know they were going for more "realistic" lighting and whatnot, but it just...doesn't...look...right.
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Greg Kirkman
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Posted: 26 July 2017 at 8:27pm | IP Logged | 9 post reply

Keep in mind that's over a 15 year span and the packaging was changed once to slim down the boxes.  Most DVDs don't stay in print anywhere near that long. 
+++++++

This reminds me...

Ye gods--when TOS first came out on DVD, I took the plunge, and bought the entire series. 40 discs, with two episodes per disc! Just imagine the total cost. Around $800, over a span of a few years.

Two years after Volume 40 was released, they reissued the series in DVD season sets, at around $130 a season. So, I unloaded the previous DVDs, and bought the new sets. Much easier to deal with, in terms of shelf space.

Then, in 2009, came the Blu-Ray season sets. Much more affordable than the DVDs (around $50 a season), and with a great selection of features. Picked those up.

We're now finally at a point where you can buy TOS in its entirety in stores on Blu-Ray for around $60, and on DVD for around $45. That's for the complete series in one box, not individual seasons. Good times we're livin' in, but, man, it took awhile for Paramount (and later CBS) to take the greed down a few notches. I've picked up a few of those sets for friends, as gifts.
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Rob Ocelot
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Posted: 26 July 2017 at 9:08pm | IP Logged | 10 post reply

Ye gods--when TOS first came out on DVD, I took the plunge, and bought the entire series. 40 discs, with two episodes per disc! Just imagine the total cost. Around $800, over a span of a few years.

I was a cheap-ass and bought only Disk 40, so I could see THE CAGE in it's full running time, in colour and not that hybrid colour/B&W hatchet job (though that's there too if you're a masochist).

...and after paying $800 for DVDs Paramount still held back on giving fans the original version of WHERE NO MAN HAS GONE BEFORE.   They cited reasons of quality which were plainly rubbish -- I mean, the hybrid version of THE CAGE looks like complete shit and they threw that on the Disk 40.   Did the pilot version of WNMHGB eventually show up on Blu-Ray?

Truth be told, one of the first episodes of the remastered TOS I sought out of curiosity was THE CAGE, if only to see how they did (or screwed up as the case may be) the upgraded effects.


Edited by Rob Ocelot on 26 July 2017 at 9:10pm
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Shane Matlock
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Posted: 26 July 2017 at 11:28pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

I remember paying 80 bucks for Next Generation season box sets used. Paramount used to really gouge the fans.
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Greg Kirkman
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Posted: 27 July 2017 at 12:30am | IP Logged | 12 post reply

...and after paying $800 for DVDs Paramount still held back on giving fans the original version of WHERE NO MAN HAS GONE BEFORE.   They cited reasons of quality which were plainly rubbish -- I mean, the hybrid version of THE CAGE looks like complete shit and they threw that on the Disk 40.   Did the pilot version of WNMHGB eventually show up on Blu-Ray?
+++++++

Yes, the original version of WNMHGB is included as a bonus feature in the third season set, along with both versions of "The Cage". Quite interesting to see.

I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss the hybrid version of the first pilot, though. It provides educational and historical value. The black-and-white segments call attention to what was cut from the "Menagerie" version (for time and/or racy content). It also features the original, unaltered version of the Keeper's voice (at least in the B & W footage). For "The Menagerie" (and the full-color version of "The Cage"), Malachi Throne's voice was pitched up, both to disguise his voice (since he would also be appearing as Commodore Mendez in the "envelope" footage of the two-part version) and to give the Keeper a creepier, more alien sound.

The full-color version of "The Cage" still isn't quite the actual pilot as it was finished and presented, back in 1964. Aside from the Keeper's voice, there are a few other small alterations and omissions. It's great to have it in full-color, though. 

Of course, the whole reason for the hybrid/black-and-white release was because the color trims that went unused in "The Menagerie" had been lost (...to Roddenberry's horror, the original "Cage" negative had been used to create "The Menagerie", not a duplicate print) and weren't rediscovered until a few years later, when they were used to create the full-color restoration.



Edited by Greg Kirkman on 27 July 2017 at 12:33am
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