Braga Talks 'Next Gen' and 'Enterprise'By Michelle
February 2, 2006 - 11:57 PM
Former Star Trek executive producer Brannon Braga discussed his disappointments with Enterprise and his fond memories of The Next Generation with G4's Sarah Lane.
In an interview at G4's web site for "Attack of the Show", Braga said that he did not consider Enterprise a failure. "Four years is nothing to sneeze at; that's 99 episodes. It's longer than most shows," he said. "I think because the other Star Treks all lasted seven, there was an expectation that it would last seven, so in that regard, it was a failure I suppose...but we look at it as a successful show." He added that the writing staff really hoped for one more year. "We did a final episode that kind of wrapped stuff up, but it was a little hasty."
Of the internship with the Academy of TV Arts and Sciences that put Braga on the staff of The Next Generation between the show's third and fourth season, when "The Best of Both Worlds" was being written, Braga noted, "It was a great time to come. The writing staff was a little sparse at the time. So I was in the right place at the right time." He met series creator Gene Roddenberry but did not get to know him well, working instead with the newer producers and writers.
"I told [Roddenberry] that I'd never seen Star Trek...and he said 'Don't watch it,'" recalled Braga. "He wanted a fresh perspective for Next Generation. He didn't want it to be like the original series; he wanted to take it in a different direction."
Unfortunately, noted Braga, "I made the mistake of saying that in a couple of interviews and the fans have never let me forget it." He immersed himself in Star Trek for 15 years after that and believes that Next Gen broke new ground. "Emotionally, it was the first Star Trek since the original, and really Star Trek has never hit that level of success again," he stated. "The group of characters was unique, the chemistry of characters was new. The subsequent Star Treks tried to replicate it with varying degrees of success but no one ever could capture that magic, really, of The Next Generation.
His best-loved episode, he said, was "All Good Things...", which he felt "wrapped up the whole series. It was such a challenge to do...I think we pulled it off." Yet he doesn't know whether there will be a new Star Trek show any time soon, nor whether he will be a part of it if there is. "It's just my opinion, but I think Star Trek should be given a break for awhile...wait a few years, let it regenerate," he said.
The full interview is at G4.