18
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation had 26 episodes in all seasons except for the second, which had 22 (not a huge difference)
  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine had 26 episodes in every season, except for the first, which had 20 (also not as much of a difference)
  • Star Trek: Voyager had 26 episodes in every season, except for the first

The first season, however, had only 16. After (almost) consistently having 26 for so long, why did the first season have such a huge difference?

6
  • 3
    This is likely some effect of project development and the initial production budget.
    – Spencer
    Jun 27 at 22:56
  • 4
    According to Wikipedia, 4 episodes from the 1st season were moved to season 2. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/…
    – RichS
    Jun 28 at 0:06
  • 1
    Actually, in Europe on VHS (remember those?), the 1st season was 10 tapes of 2 episodes, so 20 episodes in all (as they were recorded like that, qua the above wiki article). memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/VOY_Season_1_UK_VHS
    – HeartWare
    Jun 28 at 11:12
  • 2
    @HeartWare That jibes with my answer plus RichS's comment. 20 episodes were produced but they only had enough time to broadcast (remember broadcast TV?) 16 of them in early 1995.
    – Spencer
    Jun 28 at 16:05
  • 1
    @Anonymous No...They're the 16 episodes broadcast in early 1995 as "Season One" plus four more that were broadcast in late 1995 as part of "season two".
    – Spencer
    Jun 28 at 23:15
32

UPN was a new network, and the entire network had a short first season.

Star Trek: Voyager was one of the founding series of Paramount's UPN Network. The network (and thus ST:V) first went on the air on January 16, 1995.

The usual cycle for American prime-time TV series is from the late summer/early fall through mid-spring.

If you look at the summary table for the list of ST:V episodes, you'll see that all of the show's other seasons fit this pattern.

But UPN (and its competitor WB) likely started airing in January as a tactic to maximize the fledgling network's novelty value, and not compete with new seasons of popular TV shows (compare with Fox, which started prime time programming in April 1987).

1
  • "went on the air on January". When seeing the title, "mid season was the first thing I though.
    – RonJohn
    Jun 29 at 7:30

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.