Weekly Poll Results: Best Star Trek Series


I was watching the Captain’s Summit bonus disc that came with the Star Trek Motion Picture Collection last night, and it occurred to me how amazing it is that Star Trek: The Next Generation managed to overcome the odds and step out of the shadow of The Original Series to prove itself as a great show in its own right. Nowadays whenever people talk about a “Next Generation” movie or TV show continuation (ie. Ghostbusters), people freak out and whine and complain about how it will never top the original.

Well, Star Trek: TNG is proof that it can be done, and Film Junk readers seem to agree. The Next Generation topped our poll by a long shot, and surprisingly, The Original Series just barely edged out Deep Space Nine for the #2 position. Voyager was fourth and Enterprise was relegated to the basement, even though it also has plenty of supporters. Do you agree with these results?

1. The Next Generation — 46.4%
2. The Original Series — 19.4%
3. Deep Space Nine — 19%
4. Voyager — 8.4%
5. Enterprise — 6.8%

  • Ian

    I do not agree. TNG could have done something interesting but everytime they started to go to a place where morality and vices of a character might be in play they stepped back it wasn’t challenging the audience and it really wasted lots of time with innane and tedious pseudo-techno speak.

    A full 1/3rd of the episodes followed this plot: “A diplomat is being escorted by the Enterprise to an important meeting with a new race or an old former enemey. The diplomat has a shameful secret. There is intrigue and some innane b story where Data tries even more to figure out what it is to be Hu’man. Things get tense and it seems like there might actually be some action then … the diplomat’s secret is revealed he is judged by the self righteous Captain and other innocent leaders, etc. and they go have Earl Grey tea, hot.” Good? … I think not.

  • Wes Stover

    I’m on record with anyone that will listen that DS9 is the best. Exploring all the dark themes while never losing grasp on the idealism that made Star Trek great.

  • What the hell? Henrik must have voted a multiple number of times.

    If Abrams, Orci and Kurtzman are looking at these results, then it should be clear that the next Star Trek movie should be a reboot of Star Trek: The Next Generation! Now who would they get to play a young Picard?

  • Ian

    They’d probably just get Charle Francis Xaiver from X-men Origins: Wolverine.

  • Rick

    Naaa man it’s voyager. That show had the lessons, the actions, and the emotion. you could feel thier yerning to get home. and it had 7 of 9.

  • TNG has professor X, so clearly it’s the best.

  • Slushie Man

    TNG is over-rated. Hell, the first few seasons of TNG are damn near unwatchable, they’re so bad.

  • @Ian

    You sir … Did not watch TNG

  • Anna

    Voyager is the best :D I haven’t seen the TNG, but I heard you have to stick with it for it to get interesting.

  • John

    Voyager by far the best out of them all. I watched the entire 7 seasons of Voyager, every episode, multiple times — doesn’t get old. TNG is great but it’s overrated because it’s the most popular in people’s memory due to its fresh engagement after decades from the original. DS9 although great, however, I personally liked Voyager much better — FAR more humorous and entertaining! That Hologram DR is my favorite!

  • Joseph

    DS9 by a longshot was the best series. I suspect that those who would put TNG above DS9 haven’t rewatched both. DS9 manages to keep their storylines fresh and their characters interesting after several years on the SAME SPACE STATION. They couldn’t just get end the season by meeting some new badass race. The character development we see in DS9 is only matched with much newer programs like Battle Star Galactica. DS9’s dark nature, excellent writing, character development and individuality are what made it a great show. I hope the next series for TV builds off of its formula and doesn’t just throw us on another ship and recycles the storylines.

  • tiny

    Agreed, DS9 is by far the best series, judging by storyline, character development, pace etc. And another part adding to the great formula is the story arc. Actually, you have the great Dominion War story arc yet many episodes can be equally enjoyable on its own.

    Part of the problem with TNG (and the other series too) is that you have to find your way home at the end of the 1 hour show, no matter how ridiculous you have to make the Enterprise/Voyager home safe with all its main characters alive and the villains either dead or go away.

    Of course dark theme is always more interesting than idealistic utopian preaching, no matter how charismatic an actor Patrick Stewart is. And audience always love complex characters, characters that are not just good or bad, black or white.

    Besides, the character development on TNG sucks, with the notable exceptions of Picard and Data (hence, TNG crowned the “Picard and Data show”). Ask Denise Crosby she’d tell you this is exactly why she left the series.

    On DS9 every character has at least a few episodes to explore their backstory. You’d never think of liking a Ferengi or Cardassian from watching TNG. Heck DS9 even explores the different sides of the Jem’Hadars.

    TOS has great character interaction, unfortunately we only see the interactions between the 3 main characters. It would perhaps be interesting for the next Trek film to explore some of the other characters, e.g. Chekov, Scotty, Sulu, Uhura for a change – heck you don’t even have to go to such lengths to create an alternate time line. You can do whatever you want with these characters’ back story and none of it would have contradicted canon in any way.

  • Pete

    They’re all great, but you all are generalizing way too much. TNG was the best all around I think. Why? Granted, the first season was a bit weak, the second wasn’t the greatest either, but had some great ones thrown in there. From season three through six, they could do no wrong. Season seven was really good, but it was more hit and miss. DS9 and Voyager were good right from the start because the writers, make-up artists, and special effects crew had the hang of it already. But the best of TNG (The Inner Light – Best of Both Worlds – Yesterday’s Enterprise) were far better than the best of Voyager or DS9 (objectively speaking). However, I really don’t have a favorite. Right now I’m going through a Voyager phase; a few months ago; it was DS9. But if I wanted to turn someone on to Star Trek who knew little about it; I would choose TNG hands down; mainly because the cast and acting was far superior. DS9 had better acting than Voyager, but Voyager was more exciting than DS9; so those two are equal for different reasons. The writing in my opinion is equally good for all three shows. TOS doesn’t really count IMO, because it’s more of novelty; even though it was fun to watch and the writing was fabulous at times.

  • Danny

    I just re-watched the entire 7 seasons of Voyager… I am a -HUGE- TNG fan… I have to say I love them both equally.

    DS9 never did it for me … but judging by a few of the people on here, perhaps I will give it another shot.

    To the guy who said he loved the Holographic Doctor… kudos to you. That has to be one of the best characters ever created in Star Trek. Hilarious.

  • Pete

    Just to post a follow-up to my last post. I did say TOS was more of a novelty, but I was talking about the “series” itself. The movies are far beyond a novelty. As far as TV “series”, TNG, DS9, and Voyager are far superior than TOS; however Kirk, Spock and crew clean house as far as the big screen is concerned. “The Wrath of Khan”, and “The Voyage Home” will never be topped. “First Contact” and even “Generations” were fantastic flicks, but they pale in comparison to the two aforementioned TOS movies.

  • Pete

    Yeah, Voyager was fantastic. Robert Picardo is such a great actor (actually, they all are). DS9 was great too, but not nearly as exciting as Voyager. I going through the Voyager series (again), and the more I watch, other than Picard and Data; I think the acting is far superior in Voyager on the whole, which contradicts my last post. I think I was so focused on the acting abilities of Patrick Stewart and Brent Spiner, I jumped to conclusions. The same with DS9…I said the acting was better than in Voyager, but again, I was wrong. I watched a few DS9 episodes recently, and the acting seems cheesy now that I’ve gotten a fresh look at Voyager again. Picardo (The Doc) is hard to top in the acting department. And Beltran, Mulgrew and Russ are incredible, not to mention the others (Neelix, Torres, Harry, Paris). Just a solid cast. Still think TNG is the best though.

  • Pete

    Oh, by the way, I’m really disturbed regarding this poll. Even though I agree with the winner, what the hell is Voyager doing at 8.4%? That’s a farce! Every other poll in existence, though usually TNG wins, has Voyager and DS9 very close, with Voyager usually slightly ahead, but maybe only by 1%. And TOS usually always comes in second to TNG by a hair. I call foul! Obviously not the results that would be given by real Star Trek fans! What a crock.

  • Pete, if TNG is so popular, why did hardly anyone go to see Nemesis, and why did the suits at CBS/Paramount green light this latest TOS movie?

    There’s a belief that TOS is more well known to the general public. I would have thought TOS would have won the Film Junk poll, but I guess there are a lot of Star Trek fans among the people who frequent Film Junk.

  • darkomega

    There is no question that DS9 is THE best series. But that’s only because it’s so unlike the other shows, not to diss on TNG or the original. DS9 has a story arc through out the whole series and over 15 well developed characters way beyond the characters of the other shows. It was much darker and dealt with war and religion and it became hard to follow if you didn’t watch it regularly. So that’s why I assume it’s not as popular.

  • Eugene

    I love all these declarations of fact, such as “There is no question that DS9 is THE best series.”

    It’s your opinion, no matter how much pseudo-intellectual critic-babble comes oozing out of your keyboard. Maybe Counselor Troi’s spandex suits are the only thing in the world that concerns me.

  • Mr.P

    I just completed my third round of DS9, I have all series on dvd, and plan on starting Voyager again next.

    One thing that really annoys me is that both the Sisko’s are played by horrible actors, Ben Sisko in particular, almost ruins the show by his single-dimentional play, he only has one act, and after 7 seasons, it gets older than old.

    Having said that, I love DS9, watching all 7 seasons 3 times there is always another level of discoveries to be made. The firm storyline makes it feel much more like a whole story as opposed to all the other series where the storyline is much, much thinner.

    For some stupid reason, I always get sentimental at the last episode, lol. DS9 has, in my opinion, the best closing episode – in particular, Odo’s farewell with Major Kira, Chief O’Brien finding that toy general that they had lost so many episodes back, Rom becoming grand Nagus.. such closure!

  • Mr. P, if it weren’t for sentimental reasons, DS9 would be my fav Star Trek series. I was disappointed by the final episode as I believe most fans were when it first aired. I think I was expecting a more interesting story to wrap the closure around. Ben Sisko was devoted to family and his son, Jake, so it felt strange that he would abandon them to be with the Prophets. If him leaving was meant to be a sacrifice to indicate the importance of joining with the Prophets, then I’m afraid the impact was lost on me.

    I’m not sure why you disliked the acting of Avery Brooks and Cirroc Lofton. I know some people don’t like the casual attitude that Commander Sisko had, but I think it was in keeping with his reluctance to be commanding the space station. Sisko might not have had a commanding presence, but at least he had the gumption to slug Q.

  • DVS

    Put me in the bottom 6% my favorite is Enterprise. Could be because I went to high school when it was on air but I just like it the best. Not to say I don’t like them all. It’s hard to choose they all rock, but with enterprise being my generations series it’s my favorite.

  • Sam Bryant

    You know I think I would like Enterprise a lot more if it werent for the theme song
    I don’t watch voyager
    DS9 is my second favorite and is just a great show
    TNG, when its good, its great, but some episodes are very generic or soap opera y
    Still I like the TNG a lot
    but as cliche as it is, TOS definitely takes number one. There is no greater character than Spock and even if Shatner is ridiculous and a terrible actor, you even love him for that. Plus TOS had this very optimistic humanist outlook that was kind of reflective of the era it was in that was very endearing.

  • umm, Enterprise takes the cake. TNG is just too cheesy, Voyager has a way to weird captian, and ds9 stays on a space station. Enterprise is good old shoot-em-up, captian who uses a phaser, and awesome graphix awesomeness.

  • Nice to see some appreciation of Enterprise. IMO, Enterprise is as good as the latest Star Trek movie. And I say that from the standpoint of not really being a fan of the latest Star Trek movie. But I think I’m one of the few who would rather have “bad” Star Trek than no Star Trek at all.

  • Thomas Atkinson

    Enterprise for me. It’s key episodes are either eye-opening, action-packed or emotionally-hooking.
    In case you’re wondering, the key episodes are:
    1.Broken Bow
    2.Shockwave parts I and II
    4.First Flight
    5.The Expanse
    9.In A Mirror Darkly Parts I and II
    10.Terra Prime

    Thank you to all who appreciate Enterprise!!

  • Rama

    VOYAGER only … reasons –>

    1 ultimate sci fi
    2. kes
    3. se7en of nin9
    4. holodeck
    5. holo doc
    6. tuvok and his witty humors
    7. friendship of Kim and Paris
    8. new morals and emotions every episode..
    9. sit back and grab a cola … amazin show…

  • James Neary

    My favourite is DS9. When I was younger it was TNG, but I love the depth of DS9 with the story and how the characters deal with different issues and how they live with consequences. The other series don’t really touch on this other than Enterprise (which I hate).

    I hate Enterprise because the characters are bland and are all the same. There is nothing orginal about it. It’s a bad copy of all that has gone before.

    Voyager is good, but there is a bit of cheese now and again in that series. Also, Janeway’s voice annoyed to start with. Some of the actors/charcters in this series seem to be finding their feet in the first few seasons. Some just don’t. Harry Kim’s character is boring and Neelix can being annoying. I especially loved the episode when Tuvok ‘kills’ him in the holodeck because he annoys him.

    TNG is just a colourful show with good characters and actors that fit the roles well. I don’t think all of them stood up well on the big screen compared to the orginal series cast.

    The orginal series I enjoyed, but obviously some episodes are well dated and rubbish (like ‘spock’s Brain’). I prefer the movies, personnally. But without the series we wouldn’t have the movies.

    My ratings:

    4)ENT ( I haven’t bought this one. I pretend it’s not even part of the canon).

    Fair assessment?

  • Roberto P.

    In my opinion the best series is Enterprise, especially the 3rd season where the writers where not forced to develop a plot that should run only within a single episode.
    I also found (and I was surprised) Jolene Blaloc being the one who best characterized her role. She was very credible throughout the whole series. Each character was deeply developed, the stories weren’t filled by technobullshit, none of them were boring such as some TNG episodes who tended to transform Star Trek into a Shakespeare stage drama.
    DS9 was a bit too boring, plots were too simple. Voyager was ok by itself but it reached superb moments thanks to Robert Picardo.
    My 2 cents

  • Austin

    Well, it is incredibly difficult to pick just one, they are all fantastic. My main problem is that why does everyone hate the “Enterprise” intro?! Not only is a good song by itself, but the intro is beautifully done, showing the improvement of space exploration and Star Trek’s origins.
    And @James Neary, how is Enterprise not canon? It actually helps explain some unanswered questions, such as why the TOS Klingons don’t have ridges and whatever happened to TOS’s USS Defiant. Enterprise definitely was cancelled way before its time.

  • Gerard

    TNG is my favourite so far but it is the only one i have watched through all seasons.

    I’m starting to watch the others so i’ll see.

  • Leo

    I have just completed watching seasons 2-4 of ENT on HDNET. My daughter and I are stunned that the series was cancelled. It deserved better. The theme song seems to be the biggest gripe on this board. The theme song, are you serious. People who complain about trekkies make arguments along the same shallow vein to explain why they “hate sci-fi” or Star Trek. If you checked out at the theme song, as I did when I was young and admittedly stupid, you need to do what I did and watch the episodes now. The telling of the back stories for the chronologically later installments is absolutely superb. The acting on the show is as good as any other in the series and the 3rd and 4th seasons are amazing.

    I will be revisiting DS9 which I left in the second season under its original run. I will also check out Voy which I have never watched. I will say the depth of ENT surpasses TNG easily.

    The TNG episode “Casino Royale” proves my point. This episode is simply a vehicle to put DATA in a cowboy hat in a casino. The story is terrible. A Samaritan alien species sets up the casino based on a book so the lone survivor of a crew can have his world. There is no way for the guy to leave. The TNG crew gets trapped and had some crew other than DATA’s happened upon this guy they would have been stuck there too. Luckily, DATA gets them out. TNG is a fun show to watch with terrible stories that are absent of character development over the course of the run. The shows are so similar and absent of development that it is truly scary. Data, the non human, is the only character that develops over the course of the show. So my list:

    I will be watching DS9 and Voy to see if they can go up my list.

  • iisan7

    DS9 is just a tremendous show– I am constantly surprised how modern it is in its design (even if it owes a lot to B5), themes, and even its aesthetics. More than any other series, it stands up (especially the last three seasons) as something that could as easily have been produced today.

  • ProDigit

    The results of the original series are mostly based on positive answers given to a brute captain who gets the girl.

    I don’t like this because it’s james bond style, and is surreal. But I did like the original series because of the better friendship, adventure spirit, everything is possible, and depth of character.

    I liked TNG second, because it is slightly more industrialized, but more than makes up for good acting, more realism in not only gadgets and hardware, but also in the way space travel should be executed (always with caution).

    I would have wished to be a brain for startrek movies, I’m sure I’d have a lot of technological, mechanical, and electrical ideas to share to improve these series.
    Too bad they already finished!

    Deep space nine is a big drop down from the original series. Like many, Spock is a great character; perhaps the idea that there is a superior being than humans out there intrigues people, and we don’t see that on DS9!
    I find also DS9 to have lousy actors, although it gets a little better further down the series, a lousy captain, mediocre plots, and most certainly a lousy scenery! Most eps are being shot on a station which is enormously boring, no real technological breakthroughs, no deep studies into science, no depth of character or character diversity, I find DS9 deeply disappointing, and only saw it because I did not have anything else to see!

    I yet have to see enterprise and voyager, but from what I’ve grabbed from some episodes, is even more lousy acting, more fakeness, less depth of character, more weirdness, less realism, and most important of all, a big let downer is too much tech talk jibberish!
    sentences like:
    “Hyperbolic hypersonic phaserinducer, with magnetic flux core” really are a let down!
    You’d imagine people naming these things something else than latin names! Instead, call them “the K-drive”, or “did you check the static conductors, and energy paths”?
    Those things make sense!

    The few episodes I’ve seen from Voyager and enterprise make me believe even coffee is called something extra terrestrial!

  • Sens

    I have seen every star-trek episode at least once. And every series has it’s pro’s and con’s. Enterprise had for me the best season; no 3 with the xindi. TOS had the best character: Spock. TNG is my favorite series; the most impressive cast: Dianna with Will and Data and Picard and Worf. Only Jordi could get on my nerves. TNG also has the best captian. DS9 was also good, really enjoyed the interaction between Odo and Quark, also the dominion story line was one of the better. But if you want to see a Sci Fi series about a space station; watch Babylon 5 and get blown away. Voyager has the best doctor (although I also loved Phlox) and is really about exploration and survival which gives the series an edge. In voyager I missed characters that stand out.

  • Stargazer2893

    @Sens- Thats Deanna not Dianna, and Feelix not Phlox(wtf)! My god…(jk) anyway…TNG FTW!!!!! Started watching as a young child and was instantly hooked. I LOVED the Traveler, awesome concept!

  • What about the Animated Series?

  • Shane

    Enterprise is my favorite. The theme song doesn’t matter to me. The show itself was great. Imo the best characters from any ST series.

  • @Shane What was it about the Enterprise characters that makes you consider them to be the best?

  • Jonas

    Voyager was the worst Trek of them all- even worse than Enterprise…
    It wasn’t that the writing was bad. It wasn’t that there wasn’t great character development. The problem was the fact that there were never any consequences to their actions. Never. I remember an episode where Janeway and Paris turned into lizards. Yet miraculously, in the last 2 minutes, the doctor managed to turn them back to human.
    Okay, maybe that was just once… but wait
    In another episode, Belanna split into two people- A Klingon and a Human. And they were still seperate at the end of the episode. I thought to myslef “Are they going to play this out?”
    But no, again, in the final minutes, the klingon version was killed, and her DNA was somehow put into Belannas.
    Voyager had some good ideas. But after every episode it was like they pushed a reset button. They never ran out of crew members, (which were constantly dying) shuttles (which were constantly crashing), or photon torpedos (of which they only had 38)
    These are problems that held voyager back.