I recently ditched cable for Internet-only and bought two subscriptions: Hulu and Netflix. How do I like it?
Well, I miss ESPN, Palladia, and the History Channel, and it gets annoying when the antenna locks up whenever someone moves the wrong way. But I don’t miss spending that extra $100 a month. But Hulu has all five Star Trek series in their entirety, not counting the animated series from the 1970s. And they’re not running the old edits of the original series. They’re running the enhanced editions with new CG effects and cleaned-up film transfer.
And you know what I discovered? The writing and acting may peg this as a show from the 1960s, but with the replaced special effects, the first season actually ages better than the original Next Generation episodes. For instance, in the second pilot, “Where No Man Has Gone Before,” the Enterprise‘s contact with the Galactic Barrier looks more realistic than a similar scene in Star Trek V. (In William Shatner’s defense, Paramount kept cutting the budget. Even George Takei complains about that.) In “The Doomsday Machine,” the Constellation can be seen breaking apart inside the planet killer before its destroyed. The effects aren’t quite up to the JJ Abrams movies, but they hold their own with Enterprise and the latter original run movies. And they’re a damn site better than what was available in the 1990s for television.