How does The Orville compare to Star Trek? Recently, Jonathan Frakes spoke with IndieWire about directing both the FOX and CBS TV shows.
Frakes, of course, played Commander William T. Riker on Star Trek: The Next Generation. The actor has gone on to direct several TV shows, including episodes of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Star Trek: Voyager, Roswell, Leverage, Castle, and The Librarians.
In the interview, Frakes revealed that he approached directing The Orville as he did directing Star Trek: The Next Generation:
Stylistically, your responsibility as an episodic television director [is] when you do a show like ‘The Orville,’ you want that show to look like ‘Next Generation.’ And when you go to Canada to do ‘Star Trek: Discovery,’ they want that show to have the feeling, and look, and vibe of the J.J. [Abrams]-era ‘Star Trek.’ Much more cinematic, a lot of crane work, and a lot of movement, a lot of dutch angles. On ‘Next Generation,’ the traditional framing, and the things we became accustomed to as fans of the show, we see in [‘The Orville’] because that’s the look.”
He later added:
I was afraid that it was going to be like ‘Family Guy,’ and it’s not really, but it’s also not really as serious as ‘Next Generation.’ I think Seth [MacFarlane], and Brannon [Braga], and whoever else is involved in all this, they found a tone that clicks with this audience, either the millennial audience or the old school audience. Everyone is very pleasantly surprised at how well the show has been received. I’m happy to see the homage, and I’m happy to see success for whoever wants to steal good ideas.”
What do you think? Have you seen The Orville? Does it remind you of Star Trek: The Next Generation?