UPN Cancels Star Trek: Enterprise

UPN Cancels ‘Star Trek: Enterprise’ (TrekToday)

Star Trek: Enterprise will come to an end following the airing of an as yet untitled series finale on May the 13th, 2005. UPN and Paramount today jointly announced the show’s cancellation. “Star Trek has been an important part of UPN’s history, and Enterprise has carried on the tradition of its predecessors with great distinction,” UPN Entertainment president Dawn Ostroff said. “We’d like to thank Rick Berman, Brannon Braga and an incredibly talented cast for creating an engaging, new dimension to the Star Trek universe on UPN, and we look forward to working with them, and our partners at Paramount Network Television, on a send-off that salutes its contributions to The Network and satisfies its loyal viewers.”

Paramount Network Television president David Stapf added, “The creators, stars and crew of Star Trek: Enterprise ambitiously and proudly upheld the fine traditions of the Star Trek franchise. We are grateful for their contributions to the legacy of Trek and commend them on completing nearly 100 exciting, dramatic and visually stunning episodes. All of us at Paramount warmly bid goodbye to Enterprise, and we all look forward to a new chapter of this enduring franchise in the future.”

TrekToday sources report that CBS president Les Moonves himself yesterday reached the decision to pull the plug on Enterprise. Most Enterprise crew members only found out about their show’s cancellation this morning.

Enterprise only barely qualified for renewal a year ago, but was given a final chance by UPN to prove itself after Paramount agreed to drastically cut the show’s license fee. The show underwent several major changes this year, including a move from Wednesday night to Friday and the appointment of new showrunner Manny Coto, but the most important thing didn’t change – the show’s low ratings. Last week, “Babel One” set a new series low for Enterprise, attracting just over 2.5 million viewers.

While this has been rumored for over a year, it’s rather surprising. While the original “Star Trek” only lasted three seasons, it soon become a cult favorite and spawned an industry, including numerous feature films and four spin-off series, all of which got a seven year run, even the putrid “Star Trek: Voyager,” which no one will admit to watching beyond its early episodes.

Jay Solo and M.H. King

FILED UNDER: Popular Culture
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Kind of a shame as I thought the series was FINALLY finding itself. I really disliked the first few years, but this year – except for the season opener – has been pretty good.

    Oh well, there’s now another reason to start watching the Battlestar Galactica series – besides the fact it’s really good.

  2. RPD1 says:

    Too bad. They kept moving the schedule around and I couldn’t keep track to watch.

    DARN

  3. Jay Solo says:

    Ironically, I saw and reasonably liked mainly the later episodes of Voyager.

    But right from the start of Voyager they lost a lot of people with that voice.

    DS9 seems to get an awful lot of praise, but I mostly couldn’t stand it. Booooring. To “trek” one does not stay in one place.

    Enterprise had captured closest to the flavor of the original series, gained adventure that DS9 lacked IMHO, lost some of the mushy political correctness/socialist/bureaucratic edge of Next Generation, and finally gotten excellent this season with the advent of some better writers and the stories we though we were watching for about the pre-Federation days and how the Federation came to be.

  4. Jack Lewis says:

    Hey, I watched every single episode of Voyager, and enjoyed it thoroughly.

    I think the thing that killed Enterprise is when they started inserting political ideology into it. They got away with making TNG a socialist propaganda machine, but the demographics have changed.

    I think for the most part Rick Berman and Brandon Braga have done a commendable job. My kids and I were 4 of that 2.5 million that watched Friday’s episode. I’ll be sad to see it go.

  5. dougrc says:

    I really enjoyed the first season, but the show never really justified it’s use of alien species that never had been mentioned in the historically later shows. If nothing else, we’ve learned from the other Star Trek sagas is that old enemies never go away, they just keep coming back in more interesting ways. New enemies in an earlier timeline just never made any sense.

    Their biggest hope to increase their viewership was to move from Wednesday night, so that part of the decision was correct. Unfortunately they picked wrongly, choosing the night of the week that Sci-Fi channel had already decided was going to be “original series” night. 1 Star Trek vs. 2 Star Gates and 1 Andromeda was a losing proposition; and then along comes Battlestar Gallactica. The writing was on the wall; there would be no audience. ‘Tis a pity!

  6. UPN deliberately put it opposite SG-1 on the biggest night of scifi TV in history. They wanted bad enough ratings to justify canceling it. I can’t think of any other reason why they would have left it in a time slot that they knew 6 months in advance would conflict with the #1 watched scifi show ever.

    I thought Voyager improved considerably toward the end of the third season and especially in the 4th-6th seasons. There was about half a season in the 6th or 7th season that just sucked, but I thought the end run was great, besides the finale. It didn’t hold a candle to DS9 and couldn’t come close to competing wiht Stargate or B5, but it was better than most scifi TV.

    I didn’t see much in Enterprise that was political except one episode about a mind-melding disease intended to remind people of the stigma of AIDS, the endorsement of pre-emptive self-defense inherent in the Xindi arc, and then what seemed to be a few anti-Bush jabs from the new writers in one arc this year that turned out really to be very different in the context that the Romulans were behind the whole thing. Most of the questioned they raised, even in those episodes, weren’t directly related to any political scenario in the real world but rather just raised complex questions in the way B5 did.

  7. Anyone interested in trying to save Enterprise can go to http://www.saveenterprise.com for information on a letter writing campaign.

  8. DAVID D. says:

    DAVID. I BEN WATHING STAR TREK FROM THE ORIGANAL SEIRIE RERUNS TO THE TNG,DS9,VOYAGER. AND I LIKE THE REAL SCIENCE AND THARES NO RACE PROBLOM AND EVERYONE GETS ALONG WITH EVERYONE. DAVID D. LIVE LONG AND PROSPER.