May 26 2024


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Lynch: DS9 Work Different Than TNG

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For director Paul Lynch, working on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine was quite different than working on Star Trek: The Next Generation, even though both were Star Trek shows.

There were two factors that made Deep Space Nine different for Lynch, both centering on the captain of the shows.

The main difference to Lynch when it came to Deep Space Nine was the absence of Sir Patrick Stewart. “Well, it didn’t have Patrick Stewart, and that was the difference,” he said. “And the cast was not quite as good. It was OK, but without Patrick, it was an almost completely different show. And it was often hard to make it work.”

Initially, there were issues with Avery Brooks on Deep Space Nine that needed to be resolved too. “There was a problem with the lead actor,” said Lynch. “I had worked with Avery Brooks on a Spenser television movie, and he was sensational and terrific. But for some reason, they weren’t happy with what he was doing or what he had done in the pilot. So we kind of butted heads, which was unusual, because we hadn’t on Hawk. He’d been doing Hawk on Spenser for Hire for, I think, five years. So he knew Hawk, and that was fine, but this was a different character for him. So he’d done the (DS9) pilot and normally, by the pilot, the characters are set, the way they’re going to be played. That’s how he was playing it, but Rick had problems with the pilot and he had problems with my episode.”

After that episode, Lynch made a suggestion in hopes of solving the issue. “I said, ‘but look, here’s a suggestion. Why don’t you get Corey Allen to do the show after mine, because he did the DS9 pilot and he’s a wonderful director of actors. Maybe he can solve whatever problems you’re going to have, whatever you’ve got with Avery,'” said Lynch. “I thought Avery acquitted himself OK. He wasn’t as magnificent as Hawk. Hawk was a great character and Avery did it brilliantly. He wasn’t quite in the same position here. (Corey Allen) did the next episode and I don’t know what happened after that, but the next time I came back there was no indication that there was a problem with Avery.”

Currently, Lynch is “trying to put some films together,” after an eight year long hiatus.

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10 thoughts on “Lynch: DS9 Work Different Than TNG

  1. I took a peek at Paul Lynch’s filmography for DS9. He seems to have only directed for the first season, and all the episodes were either ones I disliked or can’t remember. 

    I’m not one who enjoys comparisons, but Avery Brooks was a knockout in the later seasons of DS9. “In the Pale Moonlight” and “Far Beyond the Stars” are excellent examples of that. His early years may not have been on the same level as Patrick Stewart, but when he came into his own . . . he was brilliant.

  2. Brooks was very stiff that first season or two. He acted like he felt out of place, just a guy reading his lines. He said as much during an early season 1 interview and I was really sort of surprised and disappointed. (I’ve since learned he says weird stuff like that in person all the time, so – whatever.)

    It kind of fit the character’s backstory; he was a lost man trying to find his way again. When I watch the show now, that’s how I imagine things and his acting doesn’t bother me nearly as bad. It actually seems in character.

    When he shaved the head and grew the goatee (and got the extra pip), Sisko was born. This was the Sisko that eventually rocketed to the top of my favorite Captain’s list, or at least tied him with Kirk.

    I really liked him as Hawk. I was kind of too young for Spencer for Hire, just barely (I’d seen a few episodes) but I watched the short-lived A Man Called Hawk spinoff and really enjoyed it. I liked the character so much that I used Hawk as an NPC in a Top Secret RPG I used to GM. (Yeah I know that’s really lame; I was a kid.)

    As Sisko at first he seemed like a shell of that other actor. It was weird. I had been so pumped about the casting choice, and I felt really cheated.

    I think he’s right, the main cast of DS9 was the most uneven. I really liked Visitor even though in S1 her character was the least likeable (and Brooks eventually). And I liked all of the others too, but they were just good, not necessarily fantastic. That show was much more about the writing. And the guest acting, oh man. The regulars may not have been the best, but their stable of recurring characters was unbelievable, amazing, phenomenal acting talent. Better than the regular cast of ANY Trek show before OR since.

  3. Lynch’s memory is slightly off here — Corey Allen did direct a Trek pilot, but it was TNG’s, not DS9’s. (The DS9 pilot was directed by David Carson of later Generations fame.) Lynch probably made his suggestion after directing “Babel”, because Allen did the one after that, “Captive Pursuit”.

    Interesting to hear about this early tension with Avery Brooks. He’s a very solid actor, but both he and the writers took a while to find Sisko’s voice. He was unique among the Trek captains in starting out lost and broken; Brooks’s low-key performance worked fine for that, but Sisko had to regain his confidence before Brooks could really sink his teeth into the role. It’s odd to watch Commander Sisko now, when it was as Captain Sisko that he came into his own.

    That said, he’s no Patrick Stewart — who is? The comparison is apt, because Picard became Stewart more than the other way around. Brooks isn’t that kind of passionate, theatrical actor, and when he tried to be, he tended to overdo it a bit. When Sisko is hanging out with Jake or trading dark words and veiled threats with Dukat, I forget I’m watching an actor. When he throws Garak across a room and yells at him, I remember.

    One of these days I’ve gotta see some Spenser For Hire. If Brooks was “magnificent” as Hawk, it must be worth checking out.

  4. “I think he’s right, the main cast of DS9 was the most uneven.”

    That’s the genius of DS9, in that an open spaceport would be expected to have a diversity of peoples with different abilities and qualities. The actors mimic that well, IMO, that is why they were selected. I agree very much with the rest of your appraisal.

  5. “That’s the genius of DS9, in that an open spaceport would be expected to have a diversity of peoples with different abilities and qualities. The actors mimic that well, IMO, that is why they were selected. I agree very much with the rest of your appraisal.”

    The producers selected less talented actors to play more average people?

    LOL. No, sorry.

    Just casting problems.

  6. …” it was an almost completely different show”, uh yeah, it WAS a completely different show! I liked Brooks better than Stewart especially after he came back with the “HAWK” look, then things it its stride. I also think the supporting casts were about even in talent but they were doing totally different things under totally different circumstances. DS9 is always superior in my mind.

  7. Giggle. Perhaps you are right.

    Though, don’t they only pick non-plus actors because they are very cheap on the wages. If the Series fails no big deal, if it succeeds, your production company is still well ahead?

    I mean who really was Terry Farrell, Alexander Siddig or Chase Masterson before DS9? Take Andrew Robinson, he was a significant star. I.e. The bad guy in a Dirty Harry movie, played in a couple of TV movies, then became a bit character, before he landing DS9.

    (In actually, there is a background of many Star Trek actors who knew or had worked with other cast members in non-Star Trek roles. It not how good you are, it is who you know!)

  8. Siddig El Fadil was a well-respected actor on the London stage and on British television before DS9, and has had many film and television roles since. I don’t know who Terry Farrell or Chase Masterson were before DS9, and they’ve done bugger-all but cheesecake since.

  9. As much as LOVED DS9, I never really thought Brooks was right for the part of Sisko. He was just too stiff in delivering dialogue. He got better over the years, but I always thought there was a better, more natural actor for the role.

  10. I never cared much for DS9. Especially in the later years when all of that feuding between DS9 fans and Babylon 5 fans erupted. Rick Berman was really messing up like Fred Freiberger was in TOS third season.

    Wht is the the worst of all 726 hours of Star Trek? Dagger Of The Mind, Spock’s Brain, And The Children Shall Lead, Turnabout Intruder, Tin Man, Deep Space Nine, Voyager, and Enterprise.

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