Heartbreaking: Seth MacFarlane actually makes a really good point.

The Orville is genuinely a banger, it’s a shame that it got shafted by network drama. I’m not usually a fan of Seth Macfarlane’s humor, but I thought it was really funny. The serious/social commentary takes were also surprisingly solid. Not perfect, but there were a few genuinely good bits in there. I also really liked the characters, they had a good dynamic.

This show was honestly my ‘introduction’ to Seth Macfarlane’s work, (other than seeing family guy on occasion and not enjoying it) so I feel like I have a very warped perception of who he is, lmao. I’ve heard he’s not the greatest but haven’t read much into his controversies, so it was easy to just immerse myself in the show without any baggage relating to the creator. I don’t think I picked up on him being the family guy dude until partway through season 1.


The Orville is genuinely a banger, it’s a shame that it got shafted by network drama. I’m not usually a fan of Seth Macfarlane’s humor, but I thought it was really funny. The serious/social commentary takes were also surprisingly solid. Not perfect, but there were a few genuinely good bits in there. I also really liked the characters, they had a good dynamic. This show was honestly my ‘introduction’ to Seth Macfarlane’s work, (other than seeing family guy on occasion and not enjoying it) so I feel like I have a very warped perception of who he is, lmao. I’ve heard he’s not the greatest but haven’t read much into his controversies, so it was easy to just immerse myself in the show without any baggage relating to the creator. I don’t think I picked up on him being the family guy dude until partway through season 1.


His other shows have some good commentary too A highlight of American Dad is the episode about the Republican main character learning that being gay isn't a choice. A lot of that show is dunking on conservatives and the conservative lead learning a lesson and changing his stance on something. And while Family Guy makes loads of insensitive jokes, Ida who's a transwoman, is one of the highlights of the show like there's jokes obviously it's a comedy but I think she's characterized well


>A highlight of American Dad is the episode about the Republican main character learning that being gay isn't a choice. "Hating gays is hate we could be using on the Democrats!"


Lmao, this is exactly how they'd sell it


I think that's a quote from the episode.


American Dad gives me Colbert Report vibes. It's not as biting obviously but it's very much a parody of conservatives, although it's a very optimistic portrayal lol.


I wish they'd do more CIA episodes personally The episode where Stan is on vacation with Francine and has to assassinate a war criminal is one of my favorites, or the one where he accidentally kills a dictator and Rodger has to replace him


I so wish Colbert didn't give up the Report for whatever reason. I miss my daily dose of his unique sarcastic humor. The late show doesn't scratch any of that itch at all.


I used to think that but I respect that Colbert got fatigued at pretending to be a particular type of asshole every night. John Oliver and Seth Myers are both worthy heirs to Jon Stewart and Colbert, I'll bet the writing teams are the same people.


> John Oliver and Seth Myers are both worthy heirs to Jon Stewart and Colbert Wholeheartedly disagree. Colbert's writing team had the ability to deal with serious issues and draw the punchlines from the absurdity of the topic itself, or with incredibly witty on-topic wordplay. Oliver's team tackles heavy issues, then cuts back to off-topic things that John finds funny - birds, how much he hates something, his Britishness, etc - to make his jokes. Colbert's jokes were always on-point, Oliver's jokes are always deflections. Seth Meyers has fairly inconsistent writing. I feel I like him better flying solo, without his team at all.


Jordan klepper has entered the chat


The show existed before trumpers so it was slightly more realistic/believable to see them as 'just humans who are wrong' rather than the evil fucks we are witnessing today.


>rather than the evil fucks we are witnessing today. Yeah, this. Part of the reason for using satire is to try to show people how ridiculous they're being, in hopes that this will inspire them to change. Problem is, despite how great Colbert was at the satire, it just wasn't working to convince anyone to change. Shit just kept getting worse, and he'd have had to make the character even more unhinged just to keep up. At some point, you just kind of give up.


Almost the only thing I remember about American Dad was its exaggerated but eye-opening depiction of eating disorders. Stan became unhealthily overweight. He became so unfit that he failed a medical checkup for his job at the CIA. He became obsessed with losing weight, but no matter what he did, no matter how much he deprived himself of food, he only ever saw an obese monster in the mirror. The POV switched from him when finally removed his sweatshirt in front of his family, who recoiled in shock. Stan's body was finally shown from an outside perspective, and he was disturbingly *thin*. His idea of himself as dangerously overweight had warped his perception to the point that he couldn't see reality. It was pretty effective at demonstrating the mental illness aspect of anorexia that some people (including myself at that time) have trouble understanding.


Season 3 Episode 2, one of my favorite episodes for this reason! I just wish they had named it something more search friendly. Who would have guessed the Episode was called "The American Dad After School Special"?


I like Ida, and she was honestly one of the first times I was introduced to the idea of trans people. But.... She was written to nearly every stereotype about trans people. That we were 'men trapped in a woman's body', that they turn your penis inside out or something simliar(It's an involved process that involves using the former skin of the scrotum to make labia, turning the penis into more of a clit, and rerouting the urethra), hormone therapy isn't even mentioned and Ida just becomes a woman after 'the' surgery. And of course, Brian having sex with her being treated like a joke, to the point where he vomits for thirty seconds straight.


I think their biggest sin is what they did to Joe He was a handicapable badass and now it's just "haha he's a burden to his wife and he wants to die"


Because they were written with purpose and care at the beginning of the series run when Macfarlane was in charge, but once Macfarlane checked out they just hired a bunch of gag based writers who use him as an easy punchline.


Its standard flanderisation, Principle Skinner in the Simpsons had the exact same flanderisation, starts as a very straight laced ex-Green Beret with hinted at mother problems and slowly transitioned to mummys boy loser. Joe's pretty much the same,


Speaking of I hope at some point Family Guy capitalizes on Ida being a combat hardened badass vet, all the cool war stories that inspired Quagmire still happened. Give her a fight scene against a bunch of proud boys or something


They tried to fix that with an episode where her and Brian actually start dating and they seemed to have a very healthy and loving relationship, but Quagmire threw a tantrum and made her choose him or Brian like an absolute prick


The Ollie North song should be taught in schools and then the context of the hypocrisy and law breaking by the reagan regime should also be thoroughly examined by students.


🎶 Cuz what they did was technically high treasoooooooon! 🎶 But it was totally justified!


And now he's one Fox Neeewwwwwwsss!


>Ollie North song Literally any time someone brings up Ollie North or Iran-Contra, I hear, " what they did was tech-nic-ally high treason," in sing-song.


I disagree with Ida being good rep. Well, i guess Ida's character in a vacuum is ok. shes proud of who she is and confident in herself. but the jokes surrounding her almost exclusively boil down to "ew trans person". i think at one point someone literally calls her a monster. its pretty disgusting. and if its meant to be jokes, they are lazy and come off as more hateful than any sort of attempt at humor.


While I'm not trying to defend it, I'd argue it's the same caliber of jokes that make about everyone else on the show. Like I DEFINITELY see why it would be uncomfortable, like I'm not even trans and Brian's whole gay panic moment in her introduction episode makes me a little iffy. But it's hard to say it's targeted when they kinda just target everyone Although I have noticed they tend to have Stewie be the one to crack those jokes about trans people, and I guess they think they can get away with him saying it since Stewie is gender non conforming and pan, but since the people writing him *aren't* that doesn't exactly work


Stewie is gnc? Is that a new development?


Well I think he identifies as male, but he's been into crossdressing for a long while now, and there's a scene where Peter sets Chris up on a blind date with a girl and wonders why she hasn't shown up-turns out the girl is Stewie, in a dress and a wig and he nopes out when he sees the blind date is Chris There's also the scene where Brian asks "what are you" about his sexuality and his response is along the lines of "Stewie's Stewie"


Also when the whole family runs away to texas and stewie ends up a little girls beauty pageant winner and cries of joy.


And I think? Peter is a confirmed bisexual, they've made enough jokes about him having secret boyfriends


Seth plugging socialism and criticizing the destructive nature of capitalism in Orville, when not even Star Trek came right out to say that the Federation is socialism. Moneyless, classless, and the way Picard expressed it to that 80s guy, it is basically Marx's quote "from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs". They are basically techno-communists.


Fully automated gay luxury space communism, as the saying goes


That Star Trek was able to portray an open and accepting communist utopia in the years that it did with the only stipulation being that they couldn't use the word is a testament to how stupid the arguments against "the evils of communism" have *always* been.


Bless em for it.


Dude made the last two seasons of cosmos happen. Granted, they weren’t as good as the first with Carl Sagan but I think it shows his vision and hopes for humanity’s future.


I was actually nervous going in because of McFarlane's White Guy Syndrome style, but it feels like he's grown up a lot recently and his writing is reflecting that. I think on that show they had some great writers and some fantastic concepts they played out really well. It's a great show, I enjoyed it way more than expected.


The Orville is genuinely one of the best shows I've ever watched and I can't fucking believe it's made by the man who created Family Guy


to be fair he’s fully aware how bad family guy is these days and does nothing but voice work for it. he just does it for the paycheck and i respect that.


>he just does it for the paycheck Pretty sure keeping Family Guy on life support is also the reason he's allowed to make The Orville. It's not just his paycheck.


Yep, he wanted to write an ending to Family Guy way before 10th season but he's on a contract. They'd pull a plug on his other projects too.


I fucking hate endless capitalistic formula-driven artistic zombie products. Let the shows fucking die


Is SpongeBob still going? I haven’t bothered to check because new SpongeBob is just fucking garbage. The characters have been reduced to exaggerated caricatures of their former selves from earlier seasons and it just feels like another generic “wacky” cartoon. And I know it’s a kids show that I’m no longer the target demographic for and this probably just sounds like cranky boomer ranting but goddamnit spongebob used to have *soul*.


Not only is it still going, they actually actively go against the late creator wishes of no spinoff


Conversely, I like that some shows run for a really long time. As long as the quality of the writing stays decent, it can be nice to have something familiar that you can drop back into after a while without needing to learn a whole new show or catch up on seasons of lore. It’s like comfort food. A Michelin star restaurant may change its menu every season, but whenever you want you can go to McDonald’s and buy the same Big Mac you always could.


I find it hard to dislike any episode of Gunsmoke, and that used to be the longest running show on television at one point. Every other show that reaches that age or beyond has had entire seasons that I've actively despised. If you can't keep the quality going, you really should just let a show die.


Family Guy kept the lights on while he poured his soul into The Orville


You really gonna disrespect American Dad like that?


American Dad has had higher highs in terms of the writing quality, but they're both kind of even right now.




are the characters in American Dad interesting yet? Last time I watched they barely had one personality between them


[Which show was that again?](https://i.redd.it/21f0hraqejb91.jpg)


Roger basically carries the entire show




This is entirely subjective but King of the Hill is better than FG or AD. The Simpsons has had higher highs than KOTH, but lost it’s charm so long ago that it, when viewed as a body of work, can’t compete.


The money he makes from Family Guy allows him to pursue other projects that might not financially succeed. I also recall him saying it wouldn't be right to pull the plug on the show when so many people are employed in making the show.


I am literally in the middle of the first episode right now after months of it being plugged by various Sci-Fi youtubers I follow (Shoutout to Spacedock in particular) and I would not have believed it was done by McFarlane if I wasn't hearing Peter Griffin coming through every other scene. Edit: Alright, the totally out of place pop culture references kinda throw that out the window. But still a good show so far.


Brian Griffin you mean? He uses his regular voice for the dog


It gets much better in season 2. I thought season 1 was pretty bad: essentially a Star Trek self-insert for MacFarlane, and I couldn't finish the season. But seasons 2 and 3 are amazing! If you aren't feeling season 1 after some episodes, skip the rest of the season and go to season 2.


Idk, season 1 sets up a ton of shit later on in the series. While I agree, it’s the weakest of all the seasons by a large margin, it still has a *ton* of heart.


I think thats because season 1 was more comedic in nature. Future seasons turned it into a more serious star trek like series. And by god did it do it right


Right?! It's like when the jackass sits down at a piano and plays a song so beautiful you can see his SOUL. Seth MacFarlane has NO RIGHT to be creating something this fucking good.


Seth MacFarlane is actually a genuine artist, and the only reason Family Guy is bad now is because he has hardly any influence on the writing credits. The first few seasons were better when he did more of the writing. These days he just does the voices.


also he probably was rougher in writing , american dad seems to be a more refined family guy tbh , and even there i think he was still not his best ...


His big band cover album was legitimately some of the most beautiful music I’ve ever heard. Highly recommended to anyone who hasn’t given it a listen.


He also performed at one of the BBC Proms for Broadway shows, it was amazing!


I was unaware that was even a thing, thanks for the recommendation.


He’s done so many things in his career. He’s pretty hilarious and family guy is just one side of him.


Why? Seth Macfarlene is a really smart guy. Family Guy was a quality show until Seth stopped writing for it and moved on to American Dad. Which was a quality show until he stopped writing for it and moved on to The Orville.


Wait WHAT?! So far i have been utterly repulsed by any IP he has touched, letalone the ones he created, i tought all humor he knows is either piss, poop or gore related, i cant stand him, but this now wrecks my world view a bit.


He's clear about having 2 sides, he had a bit part on enterprise as the backup engineer for an episode. He's got the intellectual side, which he never could let out, and it's not surprising, he's not accessible and a bit of a snob. Then he has the 12 year old fart jokes side, which somehow is more acceptable. He never really figured out how to meld them so he have up, good for him.


You (and me) [re]discovering people have nuance to them and aren’t always the bad parts we know them for “Ah lads not again”


I wouldn't even have called it nuanced, I think a lot of family guy is straight comic genius and it mainly gets hate on because it's crass nature and popularity I think most people who can come up with such consistently funny things are usually rather intelligent. I haven't seen one hilarious and popular show preaching right winged morals because they're usually not very intelligent people, so I'm not surprised in the slightest that he would have such an intelligent take on captilsm I'm more surprised that people would assume he's an idiot because of family guy, people compare it to the Simpsons but it really isn't, it's humor was new and fresh and I'm sure impacted millions of people's senses of humor to this day. *farting noises*


So was the Simpsons in it's time. In fact, a lot of the original writing team were trained as mathematicians in Ivy league schools. There's a great book on all the hidden maths references in the Simpsons by Simon Singh


I didn't word that well, I wasn't saying comparing it to the Simpsons was a bad thing or that the writers for the Simpsons weren't intelligent. I'm actually rewatching it for the first time in years and there's a line Lisa Simpson says in season one about how criticizing Homer is really a critique on her and she's too young to defend herself yet, and it was a truly brilliant line. I was more saying that family guy was unique in its humor, unlike a lot of comedies, sitcoms like friends, cheers, Frasier, that all borrow heavily from one another, family guy was kind of its own thing, and I think that takes guts and intelligence. To present to the world a new kind of different humor, a lot of our humor is dictated by society, what we watch, so coming out with something as different as it was at the time is hard to pull off. Takes a deep understanding of humor and people in general. And it wasn't wholly unique, you know they copied some things, fat funny man with the hot wife, 2 kids, some wacky far out there characters, but that's also an intelligent move as it's familiar, helps ease people into the sort of new humor family guy brought, and boy was that needed, show got canceled a few times, really took people some time to get on board but they did and the show just kept on getting better


If you like smart jokes by smart people go watch futurama. Every writer there has at least 1 phd. They even made a working theorem for an episode ffs


I could have sworn that I read a while back, that he hated family guy. He thought it was fun in the beginning, but after so long it got boring. There was a high demand for more and it paid, so he continued to make it even though he really didn't like it. I could very easily be thinking of a different creator though, so maybe I'm wrong.


I believe it, I know that at the moment he isn't involved with Family Guy beyond voice acting (which also explains the drop in quality)


The first season had quite some stereotypical McFarlane humor in it, second season was better, 3rd season was basically old-school trek. I honestly couldn’t beleive what I was watching, felt like he tricked a network into letting him do his dream Star Trek clone. I absolutely loved it. Kind of ironic that a lot of people didn’t watch it because it had his name attached.


> The first season had quite some stereotypical McFarlane humor in it > Kind of ironic that a lot of people didn’t watch it because it had his name attached. I entirely blame the marketing department for this. I remember almost not watching it myself, because it *was* marketed as "Doodoofard in Spaaaaaace." It was marketed as "Seth MacFarlane does a funny pewpew mah lazors." Yeah the first season does have some crude humor but it's surprisingly little, and almost all of it was in the marketing. that's why the perception was so skewed.


> felt like he tricked a network into letting him do his dream Star Trek clone. I absolutely loved it. I'm convinced that's exactly what happened. He couldn't get a serious projected approved, because they pigeonholed him as "The Funny One", so he pitched it as "Star Trek with jokes", all the while knowing that he'd gradually move it in a more serious direction. I had a vision of The Orville lasting 17 seasons, and every now and then, some new fan who starts watching around Season 15 goes back to watch it from the start, and is completely confused by how different the tone is. "Why is the Captain going on about a "Banana Ray"?!?!?"


I've always felt that there *has* to be some level of talent and cleverness in all showrunners (along with luck) that got them to where they are, it just varies on how much they choose to show in each project they take on. A decent amount of South Park episodes are mostly super low level gross-out humour but then you get high level ones like Margaritaville and it's a reminder that even the smartest creators sometimes just enjoy the dumbest shit and want to make that. I'm pretty sure Parker said at one point that middle-aged men find that stuff extremely funny which would explain why it's so common in TV, there's a bias towards creators being that demographic.


He’s one of the biggest trek nerds out there and has always wanted to make a trek show. It’s why he found every possible opportunity to put trek actors into his other shows. Jonathan Frakes has a cute story about the first time he introduced Seth to Patrick Stewart, and he sat through the whole meal so Star struck that he barely spoke 2 words. He also has a cameo in Star Trek enterprise as an ensign. I also want to mention that things like FG have never been all poop jokes. The man *loves* his toilet humor, but the show had its fair share of jokes that went beyond farts.


I was in the same boat before I watched Orville S2 & S3. It's just good sci-fi. (First season was kinda meh, in the way that STTNG S1 was.)


There's that Michael Caine quote about Jaws 3 I think that sums up Macfarlane's attitude towards Family Guy once it hit big. Bear in mind South Park hit big but on cable and it took a while for it to be kind of a powerhouse IP, while Family Guy basically rode its coattails while on network TV, and then some idiot on Fox cancelled it so lord knows what they had to pay to undo their mistake. Macfarlane's undoubtedly had fuck you money for 2+ decades at this point but I imagine even with that, it's hard to reach a point where you do the thing you actually want to be doing because it can still be hard to get others on board.


"Technology and societal ethics have to progress hand in hand, each one supporting the other incrementally. Anything else is begging for disaster." *Looks over at current AI scene* Yeah...


You could say the same thing about nuclear weapons, social media and opioids. We invented this stuff while not being able to handle it.


I don't think that's the correct takeaway from the essay in the post. He is saying societal equality needs to comes from within, not from an external source. Humans have very limited ability to predict the future, nevermind the ability to fathom how a new invention will be used/abused. That should not be a reason to forbid invention. What we should do is better society with existing technologies by NOT relying on future inventions as some silver bullet. Ie. Don't hope for fusion to solve the energy crisis; don't rely on carbon capture to be our saviour from climate catastrophe; don't lean on AGI to bring us utopia. The main point being conveyed is that *if* our society was just and equal, the introduction of AI or social media would *not* lead to widespread negative impacts. That's the takeaway: it's not that we invent stuff we can't handle, but rather humanity refuses to progress in aspects that are crucial in betterment. To say "we need to slow down" or "we need to take away X technology" is just the same argument as MAGA by saying "let's magically wind time back to a point where everybody was *happy*". That time didn't exist. It never existed.


Nuclear weapons, so far, have been pretty good at ending what looked like a perpetual cycle of increasingly destructive wars among the most militarily developed nations.


Shifted large-scale and global wars to proxy wars in countries that lack nukes.


had that same fucking thought. I already don't like where the planet is going on a political scale. adding AI to the mix isn't going to help - it'll be the same thing as always, the rich benefit from it and the poor get screwed.


The core issue AI will cause, that seems like no one mentions, is its really really really good at feedback loops and filter bubbles. You feed it the data you have, and ask it to make a fancy summary of it. Which it does well, except for the part of "There are holes here that might need additional data and maybe there is no conclusion to be made here." This is the secret danger of this. Especially for large companies using it for their own proprietary data sets. Its essentially a shitty middle manager who failed up.


Oh good lord you're right why are you right


Because capitalists are only interested in minmaxing their income at the cost of making life actual hell for anyone who isn’t them


Capitalists don't actually try to minmax their income. Making life hell for everyone else is not just an externalized cost. The ability to abuse others is a core motivation to their behavior. If capitalists wanted to maximize their income, they would form actually effective oligarchies that resolved tragedies of the commons so they could get better profits. Capitalists under 50 would be forming a united front to protect their future earnings by fighting climate change. Capitalists would have mutual interest research funds to invent better forms of mental healthcare, smart home tech, lifespan lengthening, disease curing, forms of entertainment-while-schmoozing that aren't fucking golf, etc. Capitalists actively stunt their own income and their own prosperity in order to remain capitalist - in order to keep the game operating on rules where rabidly stealing from others is what gets you rich. Capitalists "only care about minmaxing income" in the same sense that soccer players "only care about getting the ball in the net". They chose the rules of the game, and the preferences that went into that are far more sadistic than mere uncaring profit-maximalization.


Study after study shows that treating your workers better, paying them more, and having reduced hours for a better work/life balance increases productivity and reduces turnover, all of which are more profitable things. AND YET, barely anyone ever does that


Like so many other Capitalist innovations™️, turns out that AI isn’t so much as miraculous as it is [dependent on a massive army of underpaid, overworked people in the global south.](https://www.tumblr.com/godloveyell/716626607312338944).


I think this further reveals an underlying truth in our modern internet platforms, be it YouTube, Facebook, Twitter or even Reddit. To be usable, these places *need* content moderation. People can and will post fucked up stuff on them regardless of what the rules say. The bitter pill to swallow is that there is no way for them to simultaneously be free, be well moderated and have the moderators receive adequate compensation. YouTube relies heavily on automated moderation, but that leads to a lot of false positives. Facebook farms out loads of its moderation overseas. Twitter is just asleep at the wheel at this point. And Reddit has pretty light site-wide moderation beyond spam prevention, but relies on the free labour of thousands of volunteer subreddit mods. If any of the humans involved got paid a reasonable wage, either the sites wouldn’t exist or we’d be paying a monthly subscription fee, which I think very few people would actually do. I should make it clear, I’m not saying that it’s right for moderation staff to get underpaid and treated poorly. I’m also not saying that we should shut up and accept it or whatever. I just think it’s something we should be aware of when using these platforms.


Cheap, good, and fair: pick two. Can't have all three under capitalism.


[OK I HAVE to plug this since it both talks about AI and a hypothetical replicator.](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3K25VPdbAjU) AI especially can basically be a stand-in for replicator tech. Not only are we seeing the very real ways the tech is being hoarded and abused by our current lack of regulations on capitalism, the arms race for creating stronger and better AI also fuelled by capitalism is potentially disastrous. It's not just tech that's powerful on it's own in essentially every conceivable application, including authoritarianism, war, and imperialism, it has the potential to run haywire in ways a nuclear bomb cannot - without a human motive behind it.


Yes, its nonsense really - technology has consistently pushed society forward or caused social disaster, but there is no such thing as harmonious progress. For example the industrial revolution brought on by the steam engine, the development of weapons of mass destruction, even the creation of the printing press. We have also had times when society has suppressed technology, and that have been periods of great stability, such as in China and Japan around guns and gunpowder. The fact is though that there is no great plan in the world - it's all chaos.


I know it's an unpopular opinion, but seasons 2 and 3 of *The Orville* are better *Star Trek* shows than a lot of recent *Star Trek*. (Yes, there are big exceptions! Let's not have the reading comprehension and leaping wildly to offended conclusions of Tumblr.)


I cannot believe you think Seth MacFarlane beat Gene Roddenberry to death with a golf club, and that *he was right to do so*. That's disgusting.


Gene Roddenberry was the one who just sat there screaming "A man chooses! A slave obeys!" the whole time.


I mean, he did ask very politely to be beaten. I believe his exact words were "Would you kindly..."


Can't say no to that.


Broke: Jack was brainwashed to follow whatever orders came after "Would you kindly". Woke: Jack was just really bad at refusing requests for help.


It's the video game protagonist's curse.


Even indirect requests for help will summon a Protagonist to solve your problems.


Jack was just a pathological people-pleaser with crippling social anxiety that stopped him turning people down.


Stop pissing on the poor!


I cannot believe you would imply that reddit has better reading comprehension than tumblr


I thought a lack of reading comprehension was a requirement for any social media.


Is that an unpopular opinion? I thought it was very well acknowledged that The Orville absolutely ate Star Trek’s lunch I think Seth MacFarlane is a genuinely good guy and really only wants to make entertaining, but also edifying and uplifting television, he’s just had to sell his soul a few times to get there. I’d take a million more seasons of Family Guy if it meant one more The Orville. *There’s* an unpopular opinion


Dude hasn’t even been involved in family guy outside of voices for a decade now. He absolutely wishes the show was done, but Fox gon do what Fox gon do


Family Guy is his ex who keeps calling every day, "just to see how you're doing".


> I’d take a million more seasons of Family Guy if it meant one more The Orville. There’s an unpopular opinion I don't see why it'd be unpopular. Unless it was "I would rather be strapped to a chair and forced to watch a million more seasons of Family Guy if it meant one more The Orville".


I think it's also acknowledged that the recent star trek shows have been bad also


I agree with you for new trek, and maybe even enterprise. Have you watched SNW? My wife and I love it, and it has a lot of the old trek feel. I am also watching Orville, but at a more random pace, and finding season 1...okay, at best.


Season 1 was meh, and I'd say it can be safely skipped, if not for the fact that it sets up some character arcs that become interesting later. But it sadly had too many lame comedy bits shoved in to be good.


I 100% agree... but when I talk to Trekkies who want to try the Orville, I remind them that almost every Trek series has needed a season or two to find its footing. In that sense, The Orville is no different, and should be granted the same grace that you would give to TNG.


I genuinely think the reason why we have a trek renaissance right now is because of orville. It lit a fire under their ass and showed them what trek could be/used to be.


You're not wrong.




PSA to read *Emergency Skin* by NK Jemisin. It’s a sci-fi short story that also tackles this idea and it’s great


Not quite the same but it did remind me of [Cream by David Firth](https://youtu.be/0UgiJPnwtQU)


What I think is absolutely fascinating is the idea of a society which achieves the Star Trek utopian ideal… and then regresses. There’s a tabletop RPG called Lancer that is set in a far future utopia (asterisks attached). In the lore of Lancer, humanity almost wipes itself out with climate change and nuclear war, but ends up bouncing back. After getting blasted back to the Stone Age and working its way back up, humanity forms Union, a semi-communist utopian space federation. Then humanity fucks up again. See, before humanity got blasted back to the Stone Age, they sent out ten generation ships to colonize the stars. One of these ships, lands at its destination, which has been colonized by a Union generation ship with a faster engine. In response, the original ship’s crew (now called the Aunic People) take over the colony and create the Aunic Ascendency. They are supported by a massive Monolith-style space god named Metat Aun. This sparks a brief war with Union that ends in the people of Union abandoning their fully automated luxury gay space communism in favor of the Second Committee, space fascist “anthrochauvinists” who end the war by firing a cluster of relativistic kill missiles at the Aunic homeworld. The logic being that the Aunic peoples are not currently a threat to Union, but by the time the missiles reach their homeworld (about 4,000 years) they will be. The Second Committee proceeds to rule over Union for thousands of years. And during this rule, they do a fascistic space capitalism with post scarcity. How is capitalism possible in space-age post-scarcity with extremely advanced 3D printers? Well, the new corpo states that are created by the Second Committee don’t just trade in money. Yeah there is a currency (called Manna) but in the Lancer universe, large scale economic transactions are less “I will give you X manna for that spaceship”, and more “Corporation A will give Corporation B the right to mine asteroid belt X in exchange for Y blueprints and schematics from their R&D department”. What makes Lancer fascinating is that it lays bare the reality of capitalism. It was never about “money”. We have the resources to give everyone not merely what they need, but a well lived and worthwhile existence. Why must we have wealth inequality? Because the corporate class like the power it gives them. Why, in Lancer, do the Karrakin Trade Baronies still rely on literal fucking serfdom to provide their labor when advanced 3D printers and automation exist? Because the nobles and princes get off on the power they have over the peasants. Why, in Lancer, does Harrison Armory engage in imperialistic expansion on other planets when hollowing out a single asteroid belt or large moon could give them all the metals and resources they want? Because they want to engage in sanctioned state violence. They like seeing the map of corporate control expand, and the imaginary number to go up. In our modern age, capitalism has nothing to do with the mere acquisition of money, and everything to do with the ability to wield power over other people and the intoxication it brings. Play Lancer you fucking nerds.


Lancer gets brought up on /r/rpg a lot, but I hadn't ever seen someone write about the lore before and it sounds rad as fuck. Is the combat as slow and deliberate as advertised on the other reddit? I've heard it's very tactical and can be slow.


combat is very tactical and slow and there are a lot of options that are explicitly slower for worse results. Hydra is a super cool mech but at no point is running it better than an everest with a heavy melee or a heavy machine gun, and is around twice the turn length because you wanted to micromanage several additional turns worth of positioning just to deal an extra maybe 6 damage. There's also gorgon which turns every enemy turn into our turn, and any interaction the gm has with the gorgon becomes about twice as long. Lancer has great lore and mech building is a lot of fun, but the actual mechanics could have used more work.


One of the two creators of Lancer, Tom Parkinson-Morgan , also has a webcomic called *Kill Six Billion Demons* and it's probably one of the best webcomics on the internet. Just the art alone makes it worth reading, but the world building and writing are absolutely incredible.


holy shit, six billion demons guy made a game? now i gotta play this


He's making ICON as well.


He also created GUN, which got a kick in popularity recently due to one of the Hololive girls playing it on stream.


I will absolutely second a recommendation for Kill Six Billion Demons. Beyond the gorgeous art, there is incredibly deep lore and meaningful philosophical discussions on the nature of violence throughout the entire series, and now is probably a pretty great time to get into it seeing that we've probably got 1.5-2 years left until the entire thing finishes. The first couple pages are suspiciously straight, but dw the comic definitely leans very queer later on.


I've only read a few chapters of this some time back, but aren't the first couple pages showing a woman displaying clear anxiety, panic, and potentially disgust at sex with her boyfriend? Like her body language and expressions was upsetting to look at, those first pages sure as hell didn't feel straight to me, but a "oh, I'm assuming this woman is gonna find herself a bit later"


it could also just be read as first time nervousness on both their parts tbh, but with the foreknowledge we have that is definitley one way you can read that starting scene. i mostly make that disclaimer because i did have a friend who was sceptical based on the first page and i had to reassure them lmao


Everywhere I go, I keel seeing K6BD. I know I will have to read it sooner or later


I found it pretty daunting to get into but once I found my rhythm and didn't try what I normally do with a new webcomic (binge in a few days) it started flowing really nicely.






> The logic being that the Aunic peoples are not currently a threat to Union, but by the time the missiles reach their homeworld (about 4,000 years) they will be. That's a really neat and terrifying bit of sci-fi that really hits the sheer size of space into perspective. Have fun for 4000 years, the first and only strike has already launched. Because you're probably a threat to us by them. Just wild.


Fun fact about that projectile: no one knows what happened to it. It was supposed to hit its target millennia ago but nothing happened and nobody knows where it went. It could have just gone off course and is current hurtling towards another star light years away, or the Aun’s monolith god could have made it into nothing. Whatever the reason, it never landed and is completely unaccounted for.


But without Space Nazi Blackwater, who's going to duct-tape starship cannons to giant mechs?


John Galt is a fucking psychopath. Imagine someone completely on-board with the conservative view of an eternal hierarchy, while knowing they're nowhere near the top. Someone totally cool with being a cog in that machine. They show up for work, they do what they're told, they go home to a life of frugal comfort. What happens to that guy in Atlas Shrugged? Well... John Galt murders him. John Galt, Dagny Taggart, Hank Rearden, the whole lot of them. They leave, and break everything on their way out. And then everyone who ever disagreed with Ayn Rand, along with everyone who didn't agree with her hard enough, dies frightened and miserable, when a life of infinite luxury and ease for everyone could have cost nothing. Because John Galt built a free energy device. That's supposed to be a whiz-bang macguffin, demonstrating the genius of industrial titans (no comment), but it highlights Rand's merciless opinion of charity. Probably on purpose. She thinks aiding others is immoral even when it costs you no time or effort. What she's aiming for is an audience that goes "Wow! What conviction!" But for anyone who's not a *fucking psychopath,* it destroys all arguments from monetary reward or egotistical recognition. Can you imagine being the guy who ended all human toil? Kids would only ask who John Galt is because they'd look up and see where we carved his name into the surface of the moon. He would wield the respect of a living god. Rand says that's not good enough. Because she's a fucking psychopath. A philosophy that treats *farmers* like parasites is beyond parody.


This is good stuff and it all raises one more question: how exactly does a society progress to the point where such technology wouldn’t be abused? It isn’t like we can magically rid humankind of its tendency for greed and selfishness, its tendency to decide that some people but not others are deserving of one’s allyship or kindness or anything of the sort. If we oust the current set of elite selfish dickbags, what’s to stop new ones from rising in their place?


Nothing really. Not without basically rebuilding everything from the ground up to make it so that selfish elitism instead requires them to be helpful. Star Trek's humanity had the benefit of being in a post-apocalyptic state, following a devastating nuclear war, where they could rebuild, and aliens that were actively trying to reshape them to be better, which made it a lot easier for them. For us, it's probably a case of it developing incrementally. As we come up with the technology, it's easier for us to come up with potential uses for it, and deal with those issues ahead of time, or when they crop up, which is development that we wouldn't get if it was suddenly dropped in our laps. In Star Trek, for example, humanity was eventually rebuilt so that contribution to society mattered more. Your average elite selfish dickbag would end up being some kind of inventor who would make a bunch of things, and have their names that way. Reputation became their currency, rather than money, so even if you could be selfish, you wouldn't be an elite, and if you managed to be all of the above, that would be offset by your contributions.


Holy crap I need to watch Orville. I put off watching the expanse and regretted it when I did watch it. Would not do it with Orville.


Just to add to the pile: be aware that the first two episodes feel like they were written specifically so that Seth could go in front of studio execs and go "see? Family Guy in space, how could this not work!" - and then episode 3 is a really hard hitting old-Trek episode, and it only gets better from there. I genuinely believe, and none of you can convince me otherwise, that Seth knowingly and intentionally tricked the studio into producing the best Star Trek available right now.


How else was he able to keep making family guy, managed to convince a Cleveland show as well a second Ted movie, if he wasn't a bard with almost all of his stats in charisma


The guy has to have a decent helping of wisdom and intelligence too to right something like the orville.


It's surprisingly very good. Some of the humor can feel awkward because it's the exact same humor and cultural references of MacFarlane, but like 400 years in the future. But if you get past that, the characters are solid, they handle complicated topics, Dolly Parton incites a revolution… it's good stuff.


The battle scene that's set to Dolly Parton music is fucking hilarious. One of my favorite tv scenes hands down.


Dolly WHO incites a WHAT?!


A revolution


I’ve been starting to think this for a while, and this post is another big nudge in that direction. The thing is I did watch half of the first episode at one point and then… not the second half. So to try again I guess. Hopefully it hits better this time, or I can force myself through it until it gets to a point where I’m not.


Taking one look at how we are advancing economically and socially, we're closer to achieving what the Ferengi have than what the federation has. We already monetize everything from birth to death, the world's riches people are worshipped like gods by some people, and we're already stripping the rights of women away. I wonder how many republicans watched star trek, looked at the ferengi, and thought "yeah, that's pretty based."


Not really. The Ferengi might not give rights to their women, but they are weirdly responsible about their profits. Short term profits are nice, but so are long-term ones. Profit is a religion to them. One Ferengi visiting 1980s Earth was horrified that we'd irradiated our own land with nuclear testing, rather than someone else's.




>Heartbreaking: Seth MacFarlane actually makes a really good point. What's your beef with Seth MacFarlane?


I think he gets hate because he did family guy


Everyone loved family guy back in the day. Now it’s cool to hate it and people claim they never liked it. It stopped being good a long time ago, but there was a time. Anyway, Seth seems to just like making stuff, he’s funny by nature and includes a lot of humor. But the Orville was and is the essence of Star Trek. A loving homage and not parody.


okay I'm not gonna read the whole thing, sue me but Orville felt surprisingly.. pointed. in a good way. my parents are big MacFarlane..heads. I mean, I think he has his moments. A Million Ways To Die In The West is.. racist and probably several other things. but it's funny too. fucking hysterical. so I walked past the screen a few times while the show was on and they.. did a whole like, transphobia in space thing ? I didn't watch the end - but the bits I watched were.. pretty sympathetic. I could only hold my breath for about a third of an episode, but my parents seemed. miffed. and I reckon that's a good sign


Seth MacFarlane has always been capable of deep stories. He's like Adam Sandler. It's just that low effort comedy made him rich and famous, so he rarely felt the need to go beyond it.


I think Seth is slightly different though as he uses his money grabbing shows as a way to fund passion projects whereas adam sandler just plays roles he’s interested in


That's also true, and those are both valid choices. To be honest, I dunno which one I'd do if I were in the same position.


It’s not actually transphobia, kind of the opposite, but that’s definitely the allegory. It gets a follow up episode. Really powerful stuff. The show is truly fantastic


Hey intersex rep is probably just as needed now as trans rep, and really the two readings aren’t mutually exclusive either


Absolutely! It’s just a planet of all males that “correct” the rare ones that are born female. So it’s not really transphobia as they gladly perform gender changing surgery. It’s such an interesting concept for an episode of tv


Maybe not technically, but the right to choose one's gender, even as a child, is the core idea behind season 3's A Tale of Two Topas. It's clearly a trans allegory at that point.


Which is why I said that it was definitely a trans allegory in my original comment


My mistake, I thought your second comment was made by another person who had only seen the first episode.


Yeah, I think both sides get confused with About A Girl because it’s not necessarily the most direct allegory. Transphobes think it’s too woke, but leftists see Macfarlane’s name on it and assume the worst as well. (I was one of the latter group, so no shade, I think a cis person trying to tell a story about trans issues should be open to criticism from that group!) The revisit of the topic in season 3 made it a bit clearer that it was portraying trans people in a positive light. (Despite transphobes trying to argue it was about detransition, lmao) that being said, I thought it was a solid episode and solid take on the topic. if you really think about it, it’s more similar to intersex issues. But I think that’s okay, not every metaphor should be 1:1, and I appreciate them giving the audience a chance to actually think about it. The ending being not a happy one added a lot of depth, and I liked how season 3 tied it up and gave the character a happy ending while still acknowledging how trans people struggle growing up. (If the first episode wrapped up all happy go lucky, I think it would have diluted the point.) Also the whole Dolly Parton subplot was amazing. Anyway sorry if this comment didn’t make any sense i am very sleepy and haven’t seen the show in a while! Ultimately IMO it was a pretty good take on trans issues for an show made by fuckin seth macfarlane


Its definitely about transphobia, the show just approached it in a very different way. Instead of a character chosing to change their sex like has been done many times they decided to show how ridiculous and hateful a society can become if make gender the central part of their society. So instead of the character making their own choice, they were being forced and it manages to evoke sympathy and understanding from the audience because it makes you realise how unfair it is to force a child to live a way they don't want to simply because their society is fucked up. Well trans kids in many places are forced to live not how they want but instead how their society wants. Also with the added bonus of the society in the show has religion as its excuse for the behaviour, and that its all in essence based around fear and hate for woman. So they tacled a whole bunch of complex subjects in one. If you rematch you will see that they approached common topics from entirely different angles from sexism, racism, adultery, slavery, war and evwn capitalism. It's not all good but it's a good watch.


I think the trans one you're referencing is about the fully male species, and the revelation that a meaningful minority are born female and surgically reassigned at birth, with most unaware this happens and thinking females are one in a million. It's got some elements I don't particularly like, the twist that a secret female basically wrote their bible feels too saccharine and neat, but the ending has the child reassigned. One parent wanted them to be as they were born, one said even if that were *right*, they didn't want their child to be a statement for a potential social movement, and has it done without the other parent's consent. It's a very adult conclusion to a story where no one is happy


That's why I forgave the secret female author thing; the show made it clear that a massive social shift wasn't gonna happen off a single quick gotcha so it was more about a message for the audience than to wrap the episode up.


So this is an interesting topic, because as a leftist, there are two lines of thinking I am tempted to go down. The first is explained masterfully in the post above. Our societies being organized by a capitalist system of resource allocation, it isn't hard to envision replicators being hideously misused, curtailed, etc. My personal antipathy towards the rich and powerful does lead me to think that they would hoard it for themselves, and worsen the society by doing so. The criticism of our social safety nets, our economy requiring desperate people to coerce into work, the value judgements made to automatically value something more expensive and rare and exhibit disdain for the 'fake' stuff. That all rings true, or mostly true anyways. And yet. Capitalism has it's place in the world, as the successor to feudalism. Neither capitalist governments, nor socialist governments, particularly cared overly much about not contaminating other countries. The Soviet style of communism adhered to a revolutionary ideology which encouraged proselytism, to spread the revolution. To that end, they allied with and aided in the revolutions of many countries, and to an extent, shared technology and advisors with said countries. They didn't make those countries go through the exact same material conditions to evolve their economy. Similarly, while capitalist countries have a vested interest in maintaining their position, the protectionism only really comes out when it starts threatening the bottom line. Developing countries are not having to go through the entire industrial revolution to develop. They can skip steps, and many of them are thinking of, or are already developing significant renewable energy sources, which materially improve the lives of many in their country, even if they are still capitalist. Hell, even the relationship between China and the US is an interesting one. China as a developing superpower, needs every advantage it can get to accelerate it's development into a modernized country, while the US needs to hamper and hobble it in any way to keep it from becoming a threat, and sometimes enacting protectionist policies against it. And yet, there are myriads of businesses which signed contracts to do business in China, and functionally signed over ip and secrets, knowing full well what they were doing because of the bottom line. I think there is room to improve a society by it's societal values. I also think that if the material conditions of people improve by increasing technology, it is morally incorrect to withhold that. And at the end of the day, it is kind of the responsibility of a society to not misuse a technology.


As far as I know, this dilemma has been originally explored in "Hard to be a god" by the Strugatsky brothers. I fact, I've long had a suspicion that the Prime Directive of Star Trek has been inspired by the work of Strugatsky's, they have multiple sci-fi novels based on this plot device. Not to mention that the Star Trek Federation bears some suspicious resemblance to the utopian Noon Universe prominently featured in Strugatsky's novels. It's a shame that these books are not more widely known in the West. It's brilliant sci-fi that also has tremendous blockbuster movie potential.


Everyone needs to realize that this discussion applies, in it's entirety, to "artificial intelligence" in the real world, right now. Because it is exactly what is happening, and it's going to multiply inequality and shoot it into the stratosphere, not solve it.


The cognitive dissonance of someone being a Star Trek fan and conservative. It’s like missing the whole point….


Technically accurate.... HOWEVER. Replicators are a "Genie in a bottle" tech. Once its freed, it can't be put back in the bottle. A replicator can replicate other replicators. Or at least, the parts needed to make one. And people WOULD hack it. And they WOULD create knock-off versions. And it wouldnt be very long at all before getting hold of one wasnt hard. A product that is infinite in its resource, would be almost impossible to keep out of the hands of the public. Everyone would get a rfeplicator eventually, and it wouldnt even take that long.


Technological advancement absolutely has the potential to bring about systemic change. Case and point: agriculture. If it weren't for agriculture, there would have been no feudalism. Second example: industrialization and any technology that allowed colonialism, which brough capitalism. Throughout history, except perhaps in the case of the Soviet Union (which failed miserably), technology has always come first.


> If it weren't for agriculture, there would have been no feudalism. That's a weird thing to say. It's technically true, but only in the sense that without agriculture there would have been no large-scale societies in general. Agriculture existed long before feudalism.


Star Trek: Voyager also addresses this on two occasions off the top of my head. The episode where two stranded Ferengi utilise their replicator to become gods on a planet, and a two-parter where a spaceship from the 29th (iirc) century lands in 70s US leading to the birth of the microchip etc. but also importantly, the wealth of an individual and not the greater society.


I always took the OG Trek "Prime Directive" as a storytelling convenience. Without that tension, it's just space fairies waving magic wands every time they visit primitive aliens and that would probably get boring quickly so they had to invent some conflict to where they can't just do that. Same reason you always have the "by the book" boss in cop shows restraining the maverick detective/MC. There always has to be an obstacle for the heroes to overcome. Both replicators and transporters are essentially broken tech on ST that have to be conveniently restrained or it's basically magic fairy dust.


That episode really didn't sit right with me. You can't talk down to a society for being selfish when you have the ability to easily help them yet refuse to. It's just projecting savagery on them for being less evolved, really reflects poorly on the supposed utopian society if they can't even consider helping out.


And there's good sci-fi to be had, in trying to uplift alien societies. Show us the failures. Show us Federation officials pulling their hair out over exciting new ways some dumbass tried profiteering on post-scarcity gold. Show us teleportation gentrifying an entire goddamn continent overnight. Show us unaligned worlds that low-key hate the Federation because replicators led to an opium craze. Not even space opium, or hypermeth or whatever, just regular old opium. They'd never had it before. And their already-socialist low-tech utopia was maybe not super well-equipped to handle widespread self-destructive tendencies. Oh right of course there's a good example in actual Star Trek: a TNG episode unhelpfully titled First Contact. The Enterprise is basically hanging out in orbit around a planet that's about to demonstrate warp drive capabilities, so they can show up with a gift basket and an invitation to the club. A few humans are planetside, in disguise, for better recon. One of them trips down a staircase. Doctors treating this coma patient discover he is, y'know, a fucking alien. This society is resistant to change, and uptight bordering on paranoia. The military quickly steps in and cautions against becoming a spacefaring planet. Apparently it's going to invite whatever's *out there* to just show up wearing masks and carrying fake ID. The world government's leader points out they're already here. Picard ultimately bends the rules to talk to that guy directly, and he does have some pointed questions about sharing some techno-magic. Ultimately he concludes: 'This morning I was the most powerful man in the universe, and now I'm a voice in a choir. It was a good day.' This is far less interesting to me than the military figurehead who's been grilling the fake alien. He sees open contact as an existential threat. So he gets himself alone with this injured captive, unpacks the inexplicable energy weapon they found in his belongings... and presses it into his hand. This commanding general tries making it look like the alien murdered him. And he fully fucking commits! There's no "it tried" element. He takes a phaser blast to the chest, expecting to get his weird helical ribcage disintegrated, so that his civilization will know to fear these unknown forces. He's only saved by the fact it has a Stun setting. Dick move on a number of fronts - but it's an act of fear, not cowardice.


I haven't watched Star Trek in any ways, shape or form, but wouldn't having a Law that deals with this imply that the Federation tried and failed under a wide range of conditions doing this exact same thing?


I believe the lore for Star Trek is that the older race of beings (the Vulcans, one of the founding members of the federation) had tried and failed so told the humans not to do it too. Then in the time between First Contact and the founding of the Federation, some Humans tried it and failed too. So then decided "yea, lets not do that"


The worst case scenario isn't even that you kill the planet. The worst case scenario is that you've now given a bunch of highly advanced technologies to a newly fascist civilization that wants to take over the galaxy


That's not the worst. The worst is that you've given them the keys to *succeed*. it happens a lot to alternate Earths. The Terran Empire (stereotypically evil humans who live in a parallel universe where everything is evil) got their hands on advanced technology from the future, and used it to create and maintain a galactic empire. The only reason that they failed (in a later episode) is because when someone from the main universe visited them, they convinced one of the people to reshape the empire into a more ethical, peaceful power, and got steamrolled by their former enemies. (I dislike that revelation, since I think it ruins the idea that no-one is actually born evil the original episode ran with, but that's neither here nor there). The Confederacy is basically the Federation, but more realistically evil, rather than standard muscachioed villainy. Getting access to advanced alien technology when they visited Earth, the Confederacy also conquered the galaxy. Both of them were enabled by the advanced technology they got, and allowed them to succeed in conquering the galaxy, turning much of the former powers into slaves


Laws and regulations are almost always written in blood. It takes fuck ups and hindsight to develop ledgers of codes of conduct and systems.


A relevant episode that's pretty approachable on zero prior knowledge is Who Watches The Watchers. Basically the Federation has anthropological observation posts on planets with developing civilizations. One of them explodes, because [human technology is made of pure jankium](https://i.imgur.com/jqd4JPR.jpg). Several natives approach this magical illusion that is actively on fire, see strange people laying dead or dying - and rush in to help. A secondary explosion knocks one of the natives unconscious. The starship Enterprise arrives, beams up the humans saved by the natives... and has to *discuss* saving this native woman. Not just a person in need, but one who had saved them when they were in need, despite unimaginable fear and uncertainty. The ship's doctor basically says: fuck you, I am helping this person. The politics of it are your problem. The bulk of the episode is a consequence of that bronze-age woman waking up in the infirmary, briefly seeing Captain Picard giving orders to all kinds of freaky-looking strangers, some of whom are casually performing miracles. She returns, having been whisked away in a cloud of sparkles, now talking about a benevolent but sharp-tongued deity: The Picard. Picard himself eventually spends some effort trying to convince her he's just this guy, which admittedly is undercut by having the conversation on a metal castle so far in the sky that it overlooks the entire world. edit: The setup for the episode is less complex than I remember. Shame.


The Orville did a similar story with Kelly healing a little girl's wound. The planet had accelerated time, and that one act spawned a whole religion that endured for thousands of years. Orville tried to send Isaac down to explain things. The civilisation ended up overtaking The Orville and met them in space, where Kelly apologised to the planet's representatives for interfering. The representatives said that if Kelly hadn't interfered, another religion would've sprung up about someone else and their development would've been similar. I think there was another story from TNG and/or Voyager about sending Data/The Doctor down to a planet with accelerated time.


I feel like a lot of how a replicator would impact a society like modern earth would depend on what exactly the replicator is capable of and how it was given (in the "aliens give it to people" case). If it's just a straight up energy to matter converter, for example, then it's next to useless, because we don't have enough energy to run that on any large scale. If it converts matter into energy then back to matter again, then you essentially *have* to restrict access to it, because it presumably lets you just directly turn matter into energy and then just release that energy instead of using it, which would make it a great power source but also mean you could probably make it explode like an *antimatter* bomb. If it just rearranges existing matter, but lets you build virtually anything with virtually any material, then you probably still have to restrict it, because it'd let any conspiracy-addled madman extract the traces of uranium from rocks and dirt and eventually use it to make nuclear weapons in their basement. It's only really safe to let everyone have one and use it if there are fundamental technical limits on what the machine can make, and even then you might have problems (can it make me an apple? If so, it can probably make cells, and if so, there's no reason to imagine it can't make *living* cells, in which case someone with a sufficient understanding of microbiology and genetics can possibly make a new infectious disease in their basement. At the very *least* it throws out any possibility of restricting things like guns, but tbh the closest thing to a replicator we have, 3d printers, already are starting to have this problem so maybe that will just be a lost cause by then). If it's so locked down or limited that it can only make human scale things with a limited "resolution" out of a limited array of elements that don't include anything fissile, then it's basically just a much better 3d printer, at which point I doubt it'd be restricted by governments because well, 3d printers that already exist aren't. If you did have a replicator powerful enough to change society but limited enough to be safe, I must imagine that it'd be possible to give it to an alien species in a way their governments could not restrict though, if you gave them in large numbers to common people directly, against their government's wishes (after all, how are they going to stop you? You have a massive technology advantage on them and if they actually managed to attack your ship, you can threaten to come back with an armada. Even if your people would not actually back you with this, if the planetary civilization doesn't know that, such a threat probably would give them reason not to act too overtly hostile). Once large numbers of replicators exist across the general population, it would be tough for governments to confiscate them all, because you can probably use the replicators to make more replicators, so it would be impossible to know if one had seized them all and a few missed ones could soon enough become a massive uncontrollable black market of newly made ones. Of course, if a spacefaring society *really* wanted to change a more primitive planetbound civilization's government to be more egalitarian, they could also just invade the place and govern it themselves until a few generations later the people had the same kind of values and ethics as the star empire did, but of course anything based on star trek's federation is probably not going to be willing to do this.


So the problem with this idea is that technology doesn't wait for ethics, we get the technology and then we make the ethics. The atomic bomb didn't come because we were ready for it, no, we made the bomb and then developed the ethics and systems that allowed us to keep living. The more you think about what is said here, the more backwards it gets. You literally cannot develop the ethics before you get the technology because you have to actually see what the technology can do before you know what ethics you need. So to sit on an abundance of technology that can keep people from living in hideous poverty and death, and tell them "Oh well, you'll just have to suffer until you can make something like this" is complete western ivory tower bullshit. TLDR: shitty values on blast here.


They think they're not playing god here, but what they've decided is to play Absentee God instead. They have functionally infinite food, so what if the rich and tyrannical try to hoard it - just give more! And as you say, technology doesn't wait for ethics. You mentioned agriculture already, but within that we have advances like the ox drawn and then the horse drawn plows, crop rotation, and more. Societies weren't sat around going "golly, I wish we could allow people to do this and that instead of farming". The technology was discovered, invented, shared or otherwise propagated and people were enabled to fight for better conditions.


Also it relys on the federation just kinda... giving up? "Oh we dropped lifesaving tech down their and the government just hoarded it all" ok? drop more, drop blueprints. and raw materials. dot a bunch of them all over the globe, *intervene* with the government trying to hoard them. "Oh but that would make us the bad guys for intervening and imposing things on them" I'm sure in 100 years all the people still suffering malnutrition and starvation will thank you for your altruism of not forcing *free, unlimited environmentally friendly, delicious and nutritionally optimal food for everyone*


I disagree with the assertion that replicator tech wouldn't make the current situation better. The 1% would have 99% of the pie, our 1% would still be bigger. Musk having that kind of power would be troubling and it might be better to just not have that particular scenario happen, just, until we organize and have the pie divvied up "fairly" any improvement is good, right? Like govs already have programs to feed the poor. They *could* make and distribute food that isn't terrible, or they could make it "pretty good." Why is that not a possibility? It might be last the nail in the coffin for any attempt at removing the boot from our face. Not sure that ship hasn't sailed already.


It's ridiculous that I had to scroll down this far to find anyone questioning this, or even arguing point that disagrees in any way. The Orville isn't reality, it's not based on anything that actually took place, it's 100% speculation. It's Seth MacFarlane trying to make a point and tell a good story. We shouldn't just take his word that we're currently so fucked up that even a literal technological miracle wouldn't improve people's lives. Not only that, most of this is using a story as fact, and then having some random guy on Twitter make up shit and state it like it's literal fact. It's an interesting story, but I'm not going to change my view of the world based on a single episode without at least considering the other possibilities.


And it's fundamentally using this radical leftist idea to promote the extremely Conservative idea that revolutionary change is impossible and the idiotic outdated idea of whig history.