I like The Orville. Let's Talk About It!


I’d read the reviews of the first episode and decided to avoid it. After it was on for a couple of weeks I kept hearing about how it was actually good and that this is a case where the critics are out of touch with the fans. So I decided to check it out.

And you know what? It’s pretty good. I won’t say it’s great. Some (many… maybe most…) of the jokes fall flat but it has a nice aspect to it that reminds me of watching Star Trek The Next Generation in the late 80’s and early 90’s.

It’ll never unseat The Wire or Breaking Bad but I’m enjoying it!


popcorn is tasty I get mine at costco


I watched half of an episode and it was all good and then Seth just pops on screen and starts going off like he was doing a stand up segment and it’s real bad.


I like it as well for the sci-fi tropes and blatant homages to TNG. I gotta say though that the humor often falls flat for me. It just feels out of place on such a heavily Star Trek inspired show.

Props to them for sticking to the heart of sci-fi and exploring contemporary social issues. I’ll keep watching.



The humor doesn’t really work but I find it surprisingly enjoyable as a Star Trek show at times.


It’s wildly uneven but I enjoy it because it brings back fuzzy TNG vibes. And the music is good. The humor mostly doesn’t click with me and tends to jar against the more dramatic scenes.


I wouldn’t say it’s good, but I do enjoy it.

And it’s only just begun: S1 of TNG was pretty rough as well. I’m hoping it finds its legs: it could become something truly great.


I haven’t seen it because I don’t trust Seth Macfarlane with complex social issues. Do they actually do a good job or do they ignore that aspect of TNG?


Comes at you at top speed


You aren’t kidding! My wife got into ST recently and we are going to watch them all in chronological timeline order. So far we are still on Enterprise but she was curious about TNG so we watched just the pilot to give her a sneak peak. I was cringing the whole time! It really isn’t a very good introduction to the series as the actors haven’t found their grooves yet and the tone is really weird and sort of avant garde. Luckily though my wife still really enjoyed it because it is so different from Enterprise and she was just excited to see a different take on the series.

I hope in a year from now we are talking about what an amazing show Orville is and laughing at all the rough edges in the first season. This sort of sci-fi is too far and few between.


if u want a new star trek did u know there is literally a new star trek and u dont have to watch seth macfarlane’s weird reactionary ass Mary Sue himself into TNG


They’ve tried. Sometimes it’s worked, sometimes it hasn’t but I have to admire MacFarlane for going for it. What the show needs is more writers. MacFarlane has written almost all of the scripts so far.


that’s the part that kills me is that there is a LOT of genuine love for star trek in it, but only as a vehicle for ex-wife jokes? a friend of mine is actually doing a podcast about how watching The Orville as a star trek fan is infuriating


I don’t think it’s fair to say that the Star Trek is a vehicle for the jokes; I’m guessing it’s more the other way around. Seth has done plenty of pure comedies. I feel like The Orville is him wanting to do real sci-fi drama, but falling into old habits/trying to play to his perceived strengths. Trek is the goal; jokes are his attempt at getting there.

And while I hope the show improves, I do think its more casual tone is important. It feels more like real people on the bridge rather than idealized military officer diplomats and whatnot. The ex-wife jokes specifically are bad, but I do like “can you open this jar of pickles for me?” over, say, “Number One, Engage!”


I think it helps that I’ve never seen anything else MacFarlane has done so I don’t have that in the back of my mind. The humor is not great but I see some potential for the show to do something less dark and edgy. And, yeah, the first season of TNG was rough so I’m willing to give this a little slack.


I have only seen clips and trailers for it, so it could be that I’m just missing a lot of context and pacing or whatever, but I just don’t like MacFarlane’s style of comedy


Seth McFarlane is so full of himself I’m p sure a cell sample from him would just look like miniature copies of his face


The problem with it for me (apart from the obvious one of its incredibly hamfisted attempt at doing an episode on gender which might have worked in 90s Star Trek but that was 20 years ago now) is that it’s SO pastiche that it actually gets in the way of it doing its own thing. And so you end up with moments in the show that haven’t been earned, either because the writing just isn’t there or because they only did it to be star trekky without actually working for it with world or character building.

The big one that stood out for me is in episode 2, where the captain and first officer are kidnapped leaving a relative novice in charge. She takes the decision not to go on a rescue because that’s her orders, and the entire crew hate her for it. When she changes her mind, the crew erupts in cheers. But … why? It’s established in episode that this is a brand new ship and crew, who haven’t had the time to really deepen a relationship to the point that going against orders to mount a highly dangerous rescue would be the only way to make the crew not hate you. It feels contrived, unearned and hacky.

And that’s a lot of the writing in the show for me. It tries to present moral dilemmas and weight without doing anything really to establish what the principles of this fake federation actually are, it frequently forgoes more interesting writing for gags (I’m not against the idea of a comedy Trek-like, but the show wants it both ways, drama and comedy in a way that ends up making me feel like it doesn’t quite achieve either)


I have family that seems to like it, but Seth MacFarlane’s humor has not aged well and has possibly gotten worse in recent years? I’m not sure if that’s true or if that’s how much I’ve lost my taste for his brand of comedy. It feels true, though.

Part of me wants to give it a shot but I keep hearing things about the show that make me think it’s going to make me angry.


Friendly moderator nudge here - while combative-sounding thread titles are pretty common, they come off pretty aggressive and seem to provoke more sharp responses than thoughtful criticism and positive debate. In this spirit, we hope people think about the gift wrapping on their threads and what it says to others on the forums.

In this spirit, I’ve changed the thread title to something a little more friendly.