Why Star Trek Is Suddenly Canceling Its Shows

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By Josh Tyler | Published

star trek canceled
USS Protostar from Star Trek: Prodigy

Last week CBS announced they were canceling the animated series Star Trek: Prodigy. A few weeks prior, we learned that Star Trek: Discovery would be canceled after the airing of its fifth season.

And of course Star Trek: Picard finished its run. Picard wasn’t canceled, its ending is more a product of its lead simply being too old to continue on with some sort of seven season run.

To some people, ending one show and canceling two shows in such close proximity indicates a franchise in trouble. In reality, it’s a sign that this franchise is finally getting on the right track.

Star Trek Discovery canceled
Discovery on fire

Star Trek: Discovery was terrible. I know it, you know it; even the Twitter bots they hired to tell everyone how great it was probably know it.

Star Trek: Prodigy was not terrible. It was, at times, pretty good but suffered from the kinds of logical errors you’d expect from a kid’s show because a kid’s show is what it was supposed to be.

Ultimately that, not the quality of the show, was the problem with Star Trek: Prodigy. It was intended as a kid’s show, but adults were mostly the only ones watching it. The plots weren’t quite kid-friendly enough for kids and not quite adult enough for adults, which left it in a weird middle ground.

Both Discovery and Prodigy were products of a different era of Star Trek production, one that started with Brian Fuller’s attempt to bring Discovery to the screen. Brian Fuller was fired because everything he was doing sucked, but he’d already done so much work the franchise moved forward with his refuse anyway.

Since then, Paramount has started hiring better people. They’ve brought in talented, real Star Trek fans who actually know something about the franchise and know in which direction to take it.

Mike McMahon is a genius, with a true love of Star Trek, and he’s in charge of Star Trek: Lower Decks.

Scene from Star Trek: Picard season 3

Terry Matalas, a hardcore Star Trek and science fiction fan with a history in the genre, was hired to take over Star Trek: Picard and somehow managed to change it from the worst Star Trek series of all time to one of the best.

Then there’s Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. That creative team is still partially run by the team that piloted Discovery into the ground, but they seemed to have learned something from their previous mistakes.

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds is a total 180 from Star Trek: Discovery. It seeks out new worlds and tries to recapture the positivity and sense of real discovery that the original series brought to the fore.

Star Trek is headed in a new direction now, a better direction, and shows like Star Trek: Prodigy and especially Star Trek: Discovery just don’t fit. In a sense, they were weighing down the brand.

Klingon D7 Battlecruiser seen in Star Trek: Strange New Worlds

Thier budgets are better spent being poured into projects that work, projects that might be a success. Whether that means new shows or more money spent on the two remaining, actually good shows (Star Trek: Lower Decks and Star Trek: Strange New Worlds), it doesn’t matter.

What happens next is going to be better for the brand and better for Star Trek fans. Star Trek isn’t a franchise on the decline, its a franchise that has finally found its footing and is at last ready to move forward at Warp Factor 10.

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