Retool Time (Mania.com)

By:Leo Walsh
Date: Wednesday, July 03, 2002

Apart from a short-lived NBC Saturday morning animated series, STAR TREK fans journeyed through a decade-long TREK-less desert during the '70s and subsisted on a meager but thrilling diet of feature films throughout the '80s. But when STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION launched, it marked the culmination of almost two decades of off-again, on-again conceptualizing of just what a new STAR TREK series would be. With the success of TNG, TREK officially became a franchise and TNG and subsequent shows had to be carefully designed to keep the franchise flagship from running aground. On a regular basis, the powers that be must react to a deluge of feedback, including ratings, corporate dictates, fan Internet rantings and public perception. Here's how they've done it: