Dego Strange

Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2021
I have a huge doubt. Star Trek is a franchise of which I know various things and have seen various episodes and scattered films. Right now I wanted to start a real journey in Trekkian mythology, but here I have a doubt...


Let me explain myself better... I know that the exit order is always the most recommended one, but often it's not the most functional one. In many franchises (especially the big ones), they have such a vast level of storytelling that, starting from the beginning, it would make you feel part of that universe rather than a spectator.

Example: I would never recommend watching Star Wars in release order. The only plot twist that precludes you is "I Am your Father". If you watch SW in release order, by the time you get to the Prequel Trilogy, you'll already know, more or less, what to expect from Episode III. Also if you look at it this way, we already know a lot of Character Development (Obi-Wan, Anakin and Yoda), we already know what these characters will become but, with the chronological order, you grow with them and with the whole universe.

After this example, my doubt with Star Trek comes for various reasons. I know that the ending of Enterprise is a big homage to the mythology of Star Trek (especially the final scene), but those who watch it first of all would not be emotionally involved. This, from what I've heard, also applies to Strange New Worlds, I wouldn't be particularly involved in some episodes if I don't know TOS.

Some time ago I had arrived at a sort of solution, dividing the Franchise into Phase 1 and 2:

Phase 1 would have been everything that came before Enterprise, in chronological order. After seeing it all, I end this era with Enterprise (which brings me back).

Phase 2 would be everything after Enterprise (including Enterprise, which serves as a transition), excluding Abrams' Reboot, all in chronological order.

Having by chance seen an episode of Strange New Worlds, however, this quibble returned to me and I hope you can help me out.
For what it's worth, the Enterprise finale's nostalgia factor is not as big as it was intended. The episode itself was not well-received by fans. That final scene is good, but it probably doesn't pack as big of a punch now, that it's not the last Star Trek ever.

A chronological order will work fine. If you want to avoid ruining the "I am your father" moments, you could watch these Original Series episodes first:

The Menagerie, parts 1 and 2
Balance of Terror
Amok Time
Journey to Babel

As a modified airdate order, your solution mostly works. For the newer shows, it avoids jumping back and forth by seasons (or even by partial seasons). The biggest issue is Discovery, which has a huge time jump. Here's how Phase 2 would look:

Discovery S1-2
Strange New Worlds
Lower Decks
mind-meld scene from Star Trek (2009) [provides important context]
Discovery S3-5
**Starfleet Academy** [probably]

(I've omitted Short Treks for the moment. They're worth watching, but I don't want to add clutter.)

I'm going to throw in a pitch for starting with Star Trek: Prodigy, as a Phase 0. It's one of the best of the new shows, and it's also built as a starting place for new viewers. A chronological or airdate ordering would put it near the end of the list, so it would no longer serve that purpose.

Unfortunately, Season 1 has been pulled from Paramount+, for purely financial reasons. You can still buy all 20 episodes on DVD, Blu-ray, and various digital-video sites though. Season 2 is still in active production, and the showrunners are trying to find a new home for the series.
Oh, there's a recent Strange New Worlds episode that has time-travelling characters from Lower Decks. Plenty of people who hadn't watched Lower Decks enjoyed it anyway, but there's an argument to be made that you should see that first.

Here's one way to do that:

Phase 2 (post-Nemesis era)
Lower Decks
mind-meld scene from Star Trek (2009)
Short Treks: Children of Mars

Phase 3 (prequel era)
Short Treks: The Girl Who Made the Stars
Short Treks: The Brightest Star
Short Treks: The Trouble with Edward
Short Treks: Q&A
Discovery S1 [except final scene]
Short Treks: Runaway
Discovery S1 [final scene]
Discovery S2
Short Treks: The Escape Artist
Short Treks: Ask Not
Strange New Worlds
Short Treks: Ephraim and Dot

Phase 4 (continuing missions)
Discovery S3-4
**Section 31** [narratively, this probably fits here]
**Discovery S5**
**Starfleet Academy** [probably]
Short Treks: Calypso

The other advantage to this order is that the gap between Discovery seasons is much smaller.

(I included Short Treks this time, but some of the placements are speculative. I also remembered the upcoming Section 31 movie.)
For what it's worth, the Enterprise finale's nostalgia factor is not as big as it was intended. The episode itself was not well-received by fans. That final scene is good, but it probably doesn't pack as big of a punch now, that it's not the last Star Trek ever.
Thank you so much for giving me an answer and thanks for your help too. Although I particularly like the division into phases (also thanks to your help haha), for me I will use the vision in chronological order. A friend of mine sent me a link with an order in a particular chronological manner.

Enterprise 2x23 is shown during VOY and DS9. Enterprise 4x18 and 4x19 during TOS and 4x23 in the "present day" of the episode. Do you think this could be done without being weird?

Sure, that one is reasonably-well thought out. They're not trying to avoid "I am Your Father" moments, but I like how they handle the time loops.

For the years when DS9 overlaps with with TNG and then Voyager, I've made a pretty similar watch order myself!

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