Although I’m a long ways off from having this season finished, I wanted to share our rough outline for it. I’ll even include a little teaser blurb to give a few hints about where the story is going (and how the season has changed somewhat). I am treating Season 3 as a “new” season, since almost all of it is (except for a few episodes that will be retained). Enjoy the look!
3×01: Shadows & Dust – As the Federation prepares for the mission to the Great Attractor, some of its key people and facilities are under attack by an unknown enemy.
3×02: The Silent Dark – The Enterprise crew leads an investigation into allegedly mythical entities from Spirus’ past, while Majenka Sito eyes a career change…
3×03: Kali Yuga – The mystery of the Aduul brings the crew back in touch with an old friend of Celeste’s, who is less than happy to hear about her trial and the new implants.
3×04: Wagon Train – The fleet bids the Alpha Quadrant a final farewell
3×05: Prodigal Clan – En route to the first major jump point, the fleet assists the Jem’Hadar’s ancestral “parent” race with setting up a communications relay on the edge of the galaxy.
3×06: Project Deep Sky – On the eve of the first major transwarp jump, Koth relates the tale of the Third Great Human Migration.
3×07: The Others – After the success of “A Trek Across the Stars”, Yanise and her crew are back, this time chasing after stories among the non-Starfleet ships in the fleet.
3×08: Pretend Thrones – Cale Sydrin orders the fleet on a strange (and wasteful) side mission, putting him at odds with Sito.
3×09: Pretend Kings – Sydrin’s bizarre orders have led to death and discord, but also uncovered a rogue moon… with markings that appear to be ancient Spiran…
3×10: Golgotha – Peridonis’ leadership skills are put to the test as she faces an impossible decision.
3×11: Blessed Are The Peacemakers – An elderly Koth returns to his homeworld to build a cathedral, and reflects on his past days aboard the Enterprise. (Written by guest author,Hadrian McKeggan, of STAR TREK: RENAISSANCE)
3×12: Evanescence – The fleet is shocked to find a Federation starship this far from home…moreso when they find it’s crewed by phantoms…
3×13: Anomaly of the Week – It’s going to be one of those days…
3×14: Hourglass – An apparent technical mishap summons a ship that looks like the Vanguard…except for the “ISS” before the ship name…
3×15: Older Than the Stars – The fleet finally arrives at the first “break” in the transwarp network, only to find a dying race on the wrong side of a massive conflict.
3×16: Fallen – With the fleet drawn into the conflict, and some of the crew missing, Bruce begins to lose control of his “other half” – with cataclysmic results.
I’ve spent a lot of time – probably more time than is healthy – really looking at Season 3. What went wrong, why did it fall apart, etc. A big part of the reason, which has been discussed ad nauseam, is that the staff got busy (or lost interest) and I, as showrunner, wasn’t able to effectively manage things. But there’s another reason I’ve come to grips with lately: it was the wrong story. Completely, utterly, the wrong story.
The season three openers took us back to Bajor, if for no other reason so I could write some DS9 stuff again, and because I wanted to “say goodbye” to the familiar in the AQ. But in doing that, I locked us in an odd path. We tease this incredible journey in the S2 finale, but we don’t leave until 3×06. That’s nearly halfway through the season.
Mind you, we’ve got some truly great episodes in the early running. But what got lost with this season is a sense of where we are in the overall story. Partly, I think, because I didn’t have it mapped out terribly well. Oh, I knew how it was all going to end. But getting there was another story. Literally, another one. A different one. But this was a big complaint (and those of you who were with us will no doubt shout in agreement). We promised this epic journey, then poked around for way too long.
I’ve been looking at our existing episodes, really trying to work out what’s necessary. I am going to do my best to include all of our original releases, but I’ve opted to change the order of things a bit (Sito would be irate with that; you know he loves the order of things). Getting rid of Ascent really makes us have to rethink things. But we still have only 16 episodes in which to tell this season’s story. We must be more efficient in our use of episode space.
The season will now open with a three part epic: an all new serial that will get this new mission off to an explosively memorable start. We’ll meet many of the new characters (other ships/captains in the so-called Wagon Train) and a new villainous threat to the mission (whose origins may surprise you), the return of a certain goddess of death from Season 1, and enough mystery and action to satiate anyone less than satisfied with our original opening.
From there, our existing scripts will be reordered and modified, to get the GA mission off the ground right sooner than we did last time. We will have a few slots left for completely new adventures at the end of the season as well.
The changes are big, but they’re overdue. And really, what’s come before doesn’t matter so much at this point. S3’s release wasn’t as widely read and even some of you still with us never had the chance to get through it. Better for the season to get things off to a proper start. So effectively, about half of Season 3 is going to be new material. The other half will be our existing stories, worked into the new timeline (this will require surprising little effort as they’re stand-alones, for the most part).
I’m not even going to attempt to post a release time frame, since I’m doing these changes myself. I’m pretty pumped about them, though. The path is much clearer now. I guess age and experience will do that for you, eh?
So, I’ll be releasing S3 is a new season in its own right. Forget about what’s come before if you’ve read it, and get ready for the first (mostly) new season of Frontiers in seven years!
As River Song is fond of saying: SPOILERS! (Specifically for S2…)
I hate to beat a dead horse, but I love the first half of Season 2. Just love it. It’s an epic tale, really, taking six episodes to tell (not unlike DS9’s Season 6 opener). We see so much of our crew – we see them off the ship, out of the familiar, and into some damn difficult situations.
My favorite arc, though, is definitely Salea’s. She really has the most difficult journey of anyone, in my opinion. And in a lot of ways, her journey is an extension of my own “coming of age.” Well, that’s wrong. Not coming of age so much as coming to realize life isn’t all about fun and pleasure seeking. It’s a f*cking cruel world out there, and sometimes you’re going to do things that have a MASSIVE impact on other people. And that impact isn’t always good. It reflects a personal situation I was still working through when I rewrote this script, and it’s really reflected there in a lot of ways you’ll never know.
Through the rewrites, though, one of the best scripts of our original run – No Matter How Long the Night – came to make a little less sense. Because things changed in the previous six episodes, that one needed revisions, too. Except, I opted to just write a new episode, ground-up, to tell that particular story.
Those of you who remember it, will recall it’s the story where everything that Salea has done finally catches up to her. Oh sure, while they were chasing down Aidan Rahl and doing battle with the Enterprise-G, Salea was distracted. It couldn’t sink in yet. But now that they’re all settled on the new ship, now that a new routine is established, all that mess is rushing back to her, and she doesn’t know what to do.
There are some similarities between “Night” and “Daybreak” – in both, we find Salea engaging in reckless, dangerous behavior. She’s got survivor’s guilt, big time. When she programmed that thaloran weapon to target the syndicate tower, she expected to die. She didn’t think she’d have to live with the decision.
But fate is cruel (and so is Section 31), and she was saved. She confesses her crime to Starfleet Intelligence and is given a pat on the back for her “help.” She can’t deal with that. She can’t handle going free, getting off clean. In “Daybreak” we will see the effect this has had on her.
One new angle to this story is Keali, the Orion girl whose presence and affections helped Salea get over the initial shock of surviving the blast. Salea never told Keali why she was wanted. She never told her that the blast on Keali’s homeworld was because of her. That’s weighing on her, too. And though Keali doesn’t make an appearance, her presence is felt in Salea’s life.
This episode is the real conclusion to the “opening arc” – the final story that sets us back to the status quo, or at least establishes a new status quo (some things will never be the same as they were in S1). My version of this story, Daybreak, is done and I’ll be posting it on our site once the beta has given it a look. It’s not an easy read, but I think it’s an impactful read, especially if you or someone you love suffers from severe anxiety and depression. Because those things do exist, in the 25th century. But you know what else exists? Hope. For those who are willing to look for it. Will Salea? I guess we’ll find out in a few days.
As has been my habit in the past, I wanted to leave you with a video. If Star Trek were the sort of franchise to make more regular use of contemporary music, this is the song you’d find playing over the final moments of the episode and into the credits. Hopefully it will give you something to look forward to and speculate over. It’s a gorgeous cover of a more mainstream song, but this version really drives home the heart of Daybreak, and Salea’s heartbreaking journey through the darkness and back into the light.
Look for “Daybreak” on our Facebook page, very soon! (And yes, new material is coming, too. I’ve owed you guys this ep for awhile though, so you’re gonna get it and like it. Well, I hope you’ll like it. It IS technically “new” even though it’s a retelling of a similar story…)
Why the heck, after nearly a year without a single post here, seven years since Season 3 abruptly ended, and two years since even a re-release dropped, would I pick up the figurative pen and start writing here once more?
I’ve got to be honest, I have no idea.
Frontiers should have ended long ago. It should have went the way of almost every other Trek VS and faded into the ether. If the number of false starts were currency, we could cure world hunger and still have money to burn.
I don’t really want to keep delving into “here’s where it went wrong last time” and “here’s why it won’t go wrong this time.” We’ve all been down that road a million times by now, and really, there’s no point. When I started Frontiers, I was in my mid-twenties. I had no job. I had fewer kids. And I had a head full of strange ideas about how the world works. I was downright naive, I’d say, although at the start of the series that naivety was already on its way out.
I’ve always had an unfortunate habit of thinking I can do things that I have never done, and get it right on the first try. I’m in a hurry and rush in headlong without due consideration. I am, in other words, Bruce Andrade. I am the antithesis of the Spiran ideal. Sito himself would shun me and never speak to me again. In more recent years, this unfortunate tendency has caused problems in the real world, too.
But that’s all so much white noise. My personal life and issues really shouldn’t factor into Frontiers, but I’ve always used them as a crutch. To hell with all that.
Frontiers isn’t going disappear, and it isn’t going to go away. My passions are fickle and I get bored easily, it’s true… but for some reason, I keep coming back here. I can’t abandon these characters. I can’t get this series. I’ve grown too fond of them all, and I owe too much to Trek to just leave everyone languishing. And you all deserve closure. You deserve an ending. But you also deserve the freaking story.
I’m a very different guy now, staring down the barrel at age 35. Frontiers is a decade old come May. Good lord – a decade! For ten years of my life, this series has existed in my head. And for much of that, it has stalled out. It’s a crime.
So what am I getting at here? Well, I’m not going to pretend like I’ve got a staff room full of writers eager to take up the charge again. But in my rapidly continuing “old age” I’ve certainly got a new appreciation for this show. I’ve been re-reading our vDVD releases and a lot of it holds up. I’m not saying Frontiers is going to be wrapped up in the next year, or two years. But I am saying I’m damn sure going to make a go of it. Screenwriting has become cathartic for me, a way to relax after developing real life film projects. Less to worry about here. Less stress, less pressure. It’s more enjoyable.
So for the two or three of you that may still care, I’m going to try and get this going again. Just me – no staff worries, no other folks involved. I’m gonna tell this story, even if it takes another ten years. Though I certainly will aim for less.
Not much else to say right now. Season 3 “lost episodes” await creation.
Here it is, the season that never finished, that’s been six years in the making! No release dates just yet, but since we’ve shaken things up a bit in Season 3, I thought I’d share the titles. This is the first actual, complete listing of the third season that has ever existed. You’ll see some new and as-yet unaired episodes, as well as some old favorites.
This time out, the first two episodes have been rewritten from the ground up, and episode 3×03 is a completely new addition, to facilitate some necessary plot points originally established in “Ascent” (see previous post if you haven’t heard about the fate of our “feature film” script).
Enjoy the tease. A release date announcement will hopefully go up in a few weeks.
3×01: Where Prophets Walked
3×02: Promised Land
3×04: Prodigal Clan
3×05: The Federationers
3×06: Kali Yurga
3×07: Wagon Train
3×08: One for Doran
3×09: Project: Deep Sky
3×10: Exit, Stage Right
3×11: Blessed Are the Peacemakers
3×15: Virtus Vero
So, where the heck have we been “this time” anyway? Seems like we get a huge burst of momentum and then we trickle out. As is often the case, real-life is the culprit. Aside from a new job, I also had the opportunity to write and direct an actual, flesh and blood web series, called Shepard. As I write this blog, we’re preparing for our final day of filming for “Season 1.0” of that series. I won’t be returning to it until next Spring.
I’m also directing a short film in Janury, Bella Morte. If you enjoyed our episode, Valley of Shadows, you’ll love Bella Morte. Check the links at the end of this post for more info.
I wanted to offer an update on the various elements of Frontiers, so you know where we stand and what’s happening. I’ll also review our future plans.
First and foremost, Season 3. We’ve made some big changes to the lineup for the season. The biggest and most notable detail is that we have completely dropped Ascent, which was our feature film stuck in between the second and third seasons. Originally the feature was supposed to be a mini series, and that mini series was supposed to kick start staff motivation. We did the film for all the wrong reasons, and it has always held a somewhat jarring place within the overall Frontiers narrative. So, it has been dropped. We’ll include the script as a bonus feature for anyone who enjoyed it, but it’s not part of the canon any longer.
I’ve been in stasis on the first leg of the S3 release, which is redrafting the first two episodes. There’s also a new episode, Vanguard, that I am writing.
On the reverse end of the season, we have the small matter of several unreleased episodes that need penned. Our longtime staff writer, Jaron Hatch, has been hard at work on his contribution. I’ve got two to write myself. And Henrik will be contributing one as well, I believe. Once those are wrapped, Season 3 will be a “go” and we can get on with it.
As for the future, I promised everyone a fourth season and I still intend to deliver on that promise. After the fourth season, we will have our series finale – which will itself a be mini-season that will tie up the stories and loose ends.
Our new website design is more or less finished, it just needs content added. I realize our material is in limbo right now as the MZP site is gone and our new site (a redress of our old site) has no links. That’s also being worked on. As part of that, I’m going to offer a status page for our readers, which will be updated by the writers to show how far along we are in various stages of writing and production. It will help keep us a bit more focused and will help answer the question of, “When the heck is this show coming back?”
Finally, everyone was promised a “Director’s Edition” of the Season 2 episode “Daybreak.” It’s about 50% written.
It’s a slow process with my real life projects but I’m pressing onward. Check out the links below for some info on my real world efforts!
It’s been quite awhile since I’ve posted here. I guess that’s because it’s been awhile since I’ve had anything to post about!
Those of you who follow the show know that we’ve bounced around the web a little. We started at StarTrekFrontiers.net, where our little series took root and started building up a fan base. We then merged with the erstwhile Star Trek: Renaissance and the new Star Trek: Star’s End to become a founding member of VirtualStarTrek.com. “VST” as we lovingly called it was one of the pioneer hub sites online, a place where people could come to enjoy not just one, but three high quality Trek shows (with two more great shows, Avalon and Knight’s Haven, eventually joining the lineup).
When interest in Trek began to wane and the community died down a bit, Frontiers became the last founding show still standing, alongside then-newcomer Knight’s Haven. KH’s creator and I mutually decided it was time to close up shop. Frontiers moved over to another hub site, Monster Zero Productions. This site was much larger than VST, and featured a large following of Joss Whedon fans and some other virtual continuations.
MZP has recently announced that they are closing its doors to so-called fan fiction to focus on more original works. This change on their part has prompted us to move up plans that were already in motion. We certainly don’t begrudge MZP this change. They are doing what they believe is best for the growth of their online community. As a show runner, I must do the same.
Which is why I came to the conclusion a few months ago that it was not in Frontiers’ best interest to remain at MZP. We never found much of an audience there, for a variety of reasons (most of which are not significant enough to get into here). Let us simply say that I came to the realization it was time to move on, and that plans have been in motion since that time to make the move happen.
So, what does this mean for our readership? For the moment, not much is going to change. You can still access our episodes from our “temp” site at http://www.startrekfrontiers.net. Our Facebook page is still up and running, and we will keep providing updates there.
In the coming weeks, however, you can expect to see our newly relaunched website at StarTrekFrontiers.net, as well as our efforts to bring you the latest content as efficiently as possible. We’ll be embracing Facebook and social media, giving you the ability to connect and read Frontiers any time, with ease!
The staff of Frontiers would like to wish MZP the best of luck in its future plans. And to those who are sticking with us, get ready for some exciting journeys ahead!