Star Trek: Lower Decks built their entire concept around the unseen crew, so why promote them?
The whole point of Star Trek: Lower Decks was to see what life looked like for the unsung heroes of the Starfleet ships. What was the lowest of the low doing on a given day during all the adventures and such that the bridge crew had to deal with? That was the question prompted by the show’s creator, Mike McMahan.
McMahan made the bold decision to promote all four core characters to Lieutenant Junior Grade, a major step up from where they were previously. Yet, the concept of the show was dinged a bit in the process. So why did McMahan change the concept and increase their ranking?
Well, speaking to the New York Comic Con crowd, McMahan revealed that it was just time, saying (via TrekMovie.com);
"“We weren’t originally going to promote them this soon. When we started talking about season 4, I was like, ‘Let’s end the season with them getting promoted. I have a bunch of fun ideas.’ And then it was like, if I already have fun ideas, and it is hard to write a show, why don’t we just do it at the beginning of the season and not delay it? So doing it at the end of the first episode, it opened up all these storytelling opportunities."
Did Mike McMahan ding Star Trek: Lower Decks with promoting the group?
The whole point of Lower Decks was to see what the crew of the ship was up to during the big goings-on that the audience was more used to seeing. Seeing the crew get promoted and thereby getting more involved with what was supposed to be the conventional Trek action, may have taken the sting out of some people, but not McMahan.
He still sees this as the show he intended, going on to say;
"…they’re still lower decks. They’re Lieutenant Junior Grade. The word ‘junior’ is in their title. Lower Decks is all based on being in your 20s and early 30s. You’re getting your first jobs. You’re meeting your best friends you didn’t know you were going to meet. You’re still yourself and you’re learning about yourself at the same time and having the responsibilities… All this season is examining what it’s like when you are still lower decks but you are moving forward and what are the challenges that creates and what comedy does that create and what crazy sci fi adventures come from that?”"
What about you? Do you think that Lower Decks was dinged too much by the promotion, or do you think the show needed it to take its next steps in storytelling?