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17 Nov 2021

No Discovery Season 4 Reviews Any Time Soon

On November 17, Netflix clandestinely removed Star Trek Discovery for good from all of its international streaming services. I was aware that the deal with Netflix would expire some day, knowing that ViacomCBS produces fresh Star Trek content primarily as a crowd-puller for their streaming service Paramount+. But Paramount+ doesn't yet exist in most countries. I am angry about how ViacomCBS effectively bribed Netflix to suddenly pull the plug, only two days before the fourth season was to go up on Netflix. Even though Discovery is not exactly my favorite series, I was looking forward to it, I had slots reserved in my professional and private schedules to view and review it and everything was set on my website.

It seems that fans outside North America are only second-rate fans in the eyes of the people at ViacomCBS. Every season premiere of streamed Trek so far was overshadowed by the question if, where and when it would become available. We already had to wait several months for the release of Lower Decks and we also miss out on Prodigy until further notice. Being barred from watching Prodigy and now Discovery as well, there is no way for us to join the discussion or to stay informed at all, without running into spoilers just everywhere. At least, there is no legal way. If Paramount+ wants to scare away international customers or foster content piracy, they are on the best way!

For EAS, the delay means that there will be no coverage of Discovery's season 4 for the time being - no reviews and no updates to any articles either. I will eventually (have to) get Paramount+, but although the prospect is to have all Trek in one service, I'm not really looking forward to it, especially if it will require to subscribe to an expensive Sky package.

On a positive note, perhaps I can use the involuntary break to tend to some side projects without the deadline pressure imposed by newly released episodes. I can't absolutely promise it, but I think that EAS will remain spoiler-free for people outside North America.

I am not even sure if I will write episode reviews again any time soon. Already before being locked out from Prodigy and now from Discovery, I felt like it was more like a self-imposed duty. Even when US and international releases are aligned again, EAS just can't compete with news sites that don't only have veritable wordsmiths at work but also receive new episodes several days in advance. This head start gives them the opportunity to analyze everything frame by frame and also paves the way for an accommodating consensus that makes it hard for more critical fans to be still taken seriously. Actually, in recent years, most reactions to my reviews were like "You missed an Easter egg!", "Didn't you get what it was supposed to mean?" or even "Reviews must be positive or they ain't worth shit." - even with regard to Lower Decks, a series that I criticize a lot less than Discovery. Looking around on other sites that used to keep a critical distance, it seems I am not alone with my reluctance to write down my honest impressions, in a time when most people compress their comments to 280 characters, and anyone with an opinion is assigned to either the group of the "cheerleaders" or the "haters".

This was not really meant to be another rant on the state of the fandom. But keeping in mind how we are already divided, at least I hope that there won't be yet another schism, this time between North America and the rest of the world.

I will have patience. But once Discovery and Prodigy are available, I will likely watch them without an obligation in mind to catch and write down every single detail.

Bernd Schneider


EAS Timeline @ Twitter
  • 24 May 2022
    New pictures in the galleries of Star Trek Discovery Characters and Star Trek Picard Characters, now up to date with selected publicity shots from the latest seasons.
  • 23 May 2022
    The Federation starships from Discovery season 4 are in the starship database now.
  • 15 May 2022
    Besides adding facts from PIC season 2 to many articles, I will catch up on Discovery. Here is my review of the season 4 premiere, "Kobayashi Maru".
  • 10 May 2022
    I have compiled another list: All Star Trek Series Opening Credits Ranked, ordered by how much I like them and how well I think they represent the series. Also: Rate Star Trek Picard season 2 in a new poll.
  • 05 May 2022
    I wouldn't have expected it, but the finale PIC: "Farewell" effectively saves the season with its emotional impact, although the time travel and the numerous coincidences still don't make much sense.
  • 03 May 2022
    As the premiere of Strange New Worlds is only two days away, international fans are locked out - as usual. But even though I may be able to watch the show "unofficially", I don't intend to join the rat race. There will be no reviews of SNW at EAS any time soon. I will wait until I have an opinion whether the series lives up the hype about it. In the meantime, feel free to submit guest reviews. The SNW season 1 comments are open too. After posting the review of the Picard 2 season finale "Farewell", I will catch up on Discovery.
  • 01 May 2022
    It's time to update the next one of Jörg's old articles, this time Observations in TNG: "The High Ground", including over 40 new images.
  • 29 Apr 2022
    Here is my review of PIC: "Hide and Seek". This season captivates me less with every week that I watch. And unless a miracle happens in the finale, it will not make sense either.
  • 23 Apr 2022
    I have added lots of new stuff to the old article about Observations in TNG: "The Hunted", including over 30 new images. You can follow Jörg on Twitter to stay updated on this and many more topics.
  • 21 Apr 2022
    PIC: "Mercy" is another rather disappointing episode in my view. Just two weeks before the finale, there are further gratuitous complications and only vague hints about how the mess could make some sense.
Latest Comments on EAS Articles (Overview)
  • 24 May 2022

    If they were going to reboot it/reimagine it, they'd do it whether you acknowledged this sort of thing or not.
    That said, given that Ten Forward looks identical in PIC, I don't think there's much you need to be concerned about on that front.

    Also, mostly unrelated and I'm sure you've seen this by now, but this image gives us a pretty solid indication of the scale of the SNW-era Enterprise:
    I don't know if this supports your argument or my argument, but I do think it's helpful information to have. The SNW-era saucer is definitely thicker in places; three decks for the main circular portion instead of TOS's two, but the rest of it appears to be thinner.

  • 24 May 2022

    Yes, better to not ask questions these questions about computers and just sit back and enjoy the shows. The most speculative of science fictiondom is unable to keep up with the reality of progress in real world computers. Just think, the computers of TOS really did look futuristic - a lot like the computers we would have not in the 23rd century, but in the last decade of the 20th, but far less capable. I remember in 1999 when I was doing work with adaptive tech apps and hardware and how the DECtalk voice synthesizer, which was so cutting edge. I was thinking to myself that we've got stuff like this, but Christopher Pike in the 23rd century is stuck with a device that will let him do nothing more than flash one light for yes, and two lights for no, while Stephen Hawking can actually talk using DECtalk here in the late 20th century.

  • 24 May 2022

    Mars class

  • 23 May 2022

    Revised the assessment of the "Voyager quad inflation". Considering that there are no reliable canon data points in TNG, we should accept the high figures.

  • 23 May 2022

    That's an interesting annotation to be sure! I'm skeptical about precognition. I occasionally have a déjà-vu, but I usually attribute this to sketchy memories of an actual previous event that lets a situation appear as familiar. I don't think I ever had the impression I knew something in advance (because of a dream) but I rather thought so in hindsight. It would definitely help to write down dreams after waking up, I suppose (to either prove or disprove precognition).

  • 23 May 2022

    Well, if we go literally by the data volumes in quads, then the Doctor's personality subroutine (15,000 gigaquads) is many orders of magnitude higher than the total volume of one core on the Enterprise-D (630 megaquads). Better don't ask any questions... https://www.ex-astris-scien... On the other hand, quads were not really mentioned in TNG, which is why I will rework the article.

  • 23 May 2022

    I can well imagine it was not really a new idea. At least it was new in Star Trek. And has since been adopted for Futurama and Rick and Morty..

  • 23 May 2022

    Maybe we expect too much from the opening credits if we want them to express something (considering that many modern series have no sequences and no real music, and rather something like a sequence of five seconds with white-on-black titles). But yes, in Discovery it looks a bit like it says "a series about Star Trek".

  • 23 May 2022

    In the Archer Space Dock there are three ships in front a new Intrepid behind it on the left a Merian class but which ship class is the ship on the right behind the Intrepid class on the picture?

  • 23 May 2022

    Added "Républicique" in PIC: "Fly Me to the Moon".

EAS Timeline @ Facebook
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  • 14 Aug 2021
    This is the observation lounge of the Enterprise-D, as it appeared in 2367, during the fourth season of 'Star Trek: The Next Generation'. On the following year, the room would be modified in several ways, including the removal of the 'Enterprise lineage' ship sculptures from the wall.

    For several additional renders, please visit my portfolio.

    The real life set had somewhat different looking sculptures, as the ones depicting the Enterprises B and C were different to how those ships were eventually portrayed. For this reproduction, I decided to "correct" this, as a personal prerogative, and showcase both of those ships with their "real" in-universe shapes.

    Software used:
    3D Modeling and rendering: Blender 2.93
    LCARS panels and textures: Inkscape 1.1
    OS: Ubuntu 20.04
  • 07 Aug 2021
  • 26 Apr 2021
    I wanted to give her the "flashy starship porn" treatment in the flavor of Crisis Point

    Models by me

  • 10 Apr 2021
    Emblem of the Romulan Star Empire, late 24th century (formal ceremonial version).

    The Star Trek franchise is owned by Paramount and CBS.


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