sci fi tv n00b here. need an answer like, now.
do i start with stargate sg-1, star trek, or battlestar galactica
i’m thinking star trek. netflix has a few old seasons too. help??
Too complicated a question to answer in the ‘answer’ slot. Must re-blog to answer fully.
Each show is a totally different animal. And within the franchises, there are different shows as well which are still yet further different.
Star Trek is 5 (or 6 if you count the one-season long animated series, which no one does) series set over the span of about 40 years. The first, the classic, is from the 1960s and so it’s got some camp and some cheese and some stereo-types and dated roles and dialogue. But it’s also what broke the mold, and challenged a lot of things, and was way ahead of it’s time. It’s also a great adventure.
The second series was the attempt (and success) at capturing lightening in a bottle twice. Late 80s, early 90s. It’s set 80 years after the first show. Didn’t break as much ground, but ran twice as long and had a more ensemble cast and was good episodic TV.
The third series, DS9, is considered by some as the ‘black sheep’ of the franchise, and by others as the best of them all. It took a year or two to get away from being a knock-off of Next Generation with a more alien setting (space station), but once it began to become it’s own show it really became it’s own show in a big way. It got gritty and dealt with some moral and social issues again and debated war and ethics and politics and religion.
Voyager is the fourth series, and is sort of more in the vain of Next Generation but with an element or two of DS9’s mold-breaking. It’s considered by some to be TNG “lite” and some people detest it for one reason or another, but others (like myself) love it for the sense of family and fun it had. The common theme of trying to get home from being lost in space was also nice.
Enterprise is the fifth series and was a prequel that didn’t quite ever catch fire. It has it’s moments, mind you. But more often than not it fizzled. The third season saw an attempt at a season-long story arc that was considered better than the first two seasons of episodic (one story per episode) tales. The fourth season was a hybrid that did a number of 2-3 episode story arcs and really saw a sort of renaissance that invigorated things, but it was too late by then and the show was axed after that.
Battlestar Galactica meanwhile is two totally different shows set 25 years apart that only have echoes and shadows to do with one another. The old 1978 show only lasted a year before being axed and coming back as a sort of saturday morning kids spin-off that even old fans admit sucked ass. Not a lot of people today like the old 1978 show, which was pretty damn campy. More often than not, people today are talking about and watching the 2003-2009 series which began as a mini-series (2-part tv-movie) pilot and then launched as a full series with seasons of 13, 20, and 22 episodes. It’s the ground-breaking gritty drama that everyone loves and fan-flails over. It’s dark, dark, dark - but it’s supposed to be, as it’s central plot is a group of less than 50,000 survivors of a race of 30 billion over 12 worlds escaping in a rag-tag fleet of space ships running from the genocidal former robot slaves (some who look human) who nuked them to smithereens.
Stargate is one I can’t tell you much on as I never got into it, but it’s three shows - the first one lasted 9 or 11 years (I forget) and was pretty successful. It spawned two spin-offs which only last 3-5 years for “Atlantis” and only 1 season for “Universe”. Atlantis seemed kind of cheap knock-off of the original to me, while Universe was their attempt to get some of the dark and gritty Battlestar fans to flock over.
Your best best, IMHO, is to begin with BSG. The mini-series and then series. Modern stuff only. Because that’s about 80-odd hours worth of TV and so you’ll get through it quickest, but it’s also the best IMHO.
After that, you’re looking at big-time franchise commitments. I’ve written an episode viewing guide for different ways to watch all of Star Trek, it’s on my blog index if you want. :)
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- michaelskanks answered: BSG is the best show ever so you should save that for last. i haven’t seen Star Trek yet, so SG-1! (:
- seven-of-fine answered: Firefly.
- italknerdy answered: I’m a huge fan of the Stargate series. I think it encompasses so much of what is awesome about sci fi so it gets my vote :)
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- southflorence answered: battlestar galactica!
- saganth answered: Why do you generalize about the animated Trek? It has a LOT of fans!
- sistermarymargarita answered: Good answer. Although SGU lasted two seasons, not one, and apparently there is a movement to save it. I, too, would start with BSG.
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- tnamuse answered: These were great descriptions of all the shows. Watch the original Star Trek and BSG.You will enjoy the new ones more after that.
- wolfennights answered: First two seasons of
- happentolife answered: Battlestar. Galactica. Like I can’t even emphasize enough how much you should watch that one.
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- aragornenvinyatar answered: First watch BSG, then SG1, then ST (I like Star Trek a lot, but for me nothing compares to BSG and SG )
- purtistringo answered: if you like episodic, go with ST of some kind, if you like intense character driven shows with ongoing plot BSG
- esgaril answered: Star Trek TOS, TNG, DS9, Voyager, maybe Enterprise then SG-1, SGA, SGU then BSG (I don’t really like BSG TBH)
- mrpicard answered: Start with Star Trek: The Original Series.
- uglybagofmostlywater answered: Star Trek Voyager then Stargate SG1 then BSG
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