I have mixed feelings about a new Star Trek TV series


Seven years ago I would have been beyond excited for a new Star Trek TV series, like the one just announced by CBS due to premiere in January of 2017. When Enterprise was unceremoniously cancelled in 2005, despite having hit its narrative and creative stride in its fourth and final season, I gave up hope of seeing Star Trek on TV again in my lifetime. For eighteen straight years, almost all of my childhood, Star Trek had been a staple with at least one or two series constantly on the air, and facing a world without Star Trek in my living room was a depressing prospect. So the me in the period of 2005-2009 would have been thrilled with today’s news. But the reality is that I’m filled with some strongly mixed feelings about the news, despite my undying love for (almost) all things Trek.

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Star Trek IS Political, and That’s the Way I Like It

James T Kirk

The 2016 US Presidential race has already devolved into something of a circus, and while I generally stay out of politics on this blog a recent article about one of the potential candidates caught my eye. Republican Senator Ted Cruz, a conservative, recently did an interview with New York Times magazine where he talked about his preference for Han Solo and Spider-man, but what really stood out was what he had to say about Star Trek. Cruz has mentioned being a Star Trek fan before, and it wasn’t a surprise to hear him say he prefers Kirk to Picard, but he went on to make some very incorrect claims about Star Trek that came to the attention of none other than Captain Kirk himself, William Shatner. But before we get to Shatner’s response, here’s what Cruz had to say:

You’re also a fan of ‘‘Star Trek.’’ Do you prefer Captain Kirk or Captain Picard? Absolutely James Tiberius Kirk.

Well, that goes with being a Kirk person. It does indeed. Let me do a little psychoanalysis. If you look at ‘‘Star Trek: The Next Generation,’’ it basically split James T. Kirk into two people. Picard was Kirk’s rational side, and William Riker was his passionate side. I prefer a complete captain. To be effective, you need both heart and mind.

I thought your critique might go in a different direction, because ‘‘Next Generation’’ is more touchy-feely in its politics than the original. No doubt. The original ‘‘Star Trek’’ was grittier. Kirk is working class; Picard is an aristocrat. Kirk is a passionate fighter for justice; Picard is a cerebral philosopher. The original ‘‘Star Trek’’ pressed for racial equality, which was one of its best characteristics, but it did so without sermonizing.

Do you have a suspicion about whether Kirk would be a Democrat or a Republican? I think it is quite likely that Kirk is a Republican and Picard is a Democrat.

Although Cruz is certainly welcome to prefer Kirk to Picard, there are several things very wrong with his assessment of Star Trek. Continue reading

Quote of the Day

Ezri Dax: I take it we’ll be the Spartans?

Julian Bashir: Fighting to the last man.

Ezri Dax: Just like the Alamo.

Julian Bashir: Exactly.

Ezri Dax: Have you talked to a counselor about these annihilation fantasies?

Julian Bashir: Do you think I should?

Ezri Dax: M-m. I’ll set up a session for you tomorrow.

Julian Bashir: What about tonight?

Ezri Dax: Tonight we defend the pass.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Season 7: Episode 25 – “What You Leave Behind”

Quote of the Day

Quark: A-ha, I knew it! When I saw the two of you slip out, I said to myself, that no-good, misanthropic, cantankerous changeling is trying to sneak off the station without anyone noticing.

Odo: That was the idea.

Quark: Well, it’s not gonna happen, is it?

Odo: Apparently not.

Quark: So – now that I’m here… is there something you want to say to me?

Odo: Such as?

Quark: Such as… ‘Goodbye. You certainly were a worthy adversary.’ Or maybe something with the words ‘mutual respect’ in it.

Odo: No.

Quark: No? What do you mean, no?

Odo: I mean, no. I have nothing I want to say to you.

Quark: You telling me that after all these years, after all we’ve been through, you’re not even gonna say goodbye to me?

Odo: That’s right. Nerys, I’ll be on the runabout.

Kira Nerys: Don’t take it hard, Quark.

Quark: Hard? What’re you talking about? That man loves me! Couldn’t you see? It was written all over his back.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Season 7: Episode 25 – “What You Leave Behind”

Quote of the Day

Benjamin Sisko: This may be the last time we’re all together. But no matter what the future holds, no matter how far we travel, a part of us – a very important part – will always remain here, on Deep Space Nine.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Season 7: Episode 25 – “What You Leave Behind”

Quote of the Day

Jake Sisko: Any idea where you’re gonna live?

Miles O’Brien: No, Keiko and I’re still mulling over a few possibilities.

Worf: Have you ever considered Minsk?

Miles O’Brien: I don’t think that’s on our list.

Benjamin Sisko: New Orleans is a gorgeous city.

Kasidy Yates: I’ve heard great things about Paris.

Worf: Minsk.

Ezri Dax: Jadzia loved Rio.

Odo: Well, you’ve certainly got a lot of choices.

Miles O’Brien: Yeah, too many, hm?

Worf: Minsk.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Season 7: Episode 25 – “What You Leave Behind”

Quote of the Day

Garak: All during the years of my exile I imagined what it would be like to come home. I even thought of living in this house again, with Mila. But now she’s dead, and this house is about to be reduced to a pile of rubble. My Cardassia is gone.

Kira Nerys: Then fight for a new Cardassia.

Garak: I have an even better reason, Commander: revenge.

Kira Nerys: That works too.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Season 7: Episode 25 – “What You Leave Behind”