Star Trek

Star Trek Discovery is not the Star Trek We Need

1966 was a time of rebellion in America: The Civil Rights movement, the anti-Vietnam war movement, the Free Love movement, were all on the rise. People were pissed — at the government, at the establishment, at each other, and at the ‘other.’

Along came a TV show called Star Trek (now referred to as The Original Series, or just ToS). In the show, we had gotten past our differences, we had gotten past greed, we’d molded the establishment. We were out to make the known world a better place for everyone, and we were actively seeking out new members. It was a very positive, stabilizing message.

Fast forward to today.

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(Spoilers for Stark Trek: Discovery episodes 1&2; The Orville episodes 1-3)

Music as a weapon - too silly an idea?

I’m at a bit of a crossroads with the novel I’m writing (hereafter referred to as WiP - short for ‘Work in Progress”). I had an idea for an alien race that I thought would be different. I built a plot point around that difference. Then I saw something similar in a movie … and I thought it was stupid.

What to do? What to do? Do I re-write the WiP to eliminate that plot point? Do I remove it entirely? Or is it OK?

Anyone who knows a writer knows that we’re very insecure about our writing, fragile, even. So what do we do when a plot point appears ridiculous? Panic. Stop writing. Have long breaks while we try to understand how we got into this terrible dilemma.

Or maybe we ask for help. Read on

I Want to Believe

Star Trek Beyond has been on my mind a lot lately. Paramount’s treatment of Star Trek, and specifically the JJ Abrams reboot of the concept in 2009, has been irritating me more and more. I know I’m not alone. You see it on Reddit, you see it in film sites. Old-school fans aren’t happy with how the franchise has been treated in the JJ Trek universe and much of that unhappiness came into focus with the first trailer for Star Trek Beyond.

But a few things have happened recently that offer optimism.

Star Trek at 50 - Beyond the fanbase


It’s the 50th anniversary of Star Trek, and the fans had been hoping for a grand celebration. With no new Star Trek on TV this year, and with much of the original core fanbase not happy with JJ Abram’s 2009 rebooting of the franchise, this might be the most depressing birthday party you ever attend (or more likely, don’t even hear about).

Star Trek: Red Shirts Had It Better Than Blondes

Forget being a Red Shirt, being blonde on Star Trek could be fatal (to your acting career). After recently viewing Shatner's Chaos on The Bridge documentary and watching an old episode of Voyager, it hit me: blonde women didn’t usually last long on Star Trek. Grace Lee Whitney, Denise Crosby, and Jennifer Lien all didn’t make it through their respective series, all were blonde, and none had prominent acting careers afterwards. (Every rule has its exception, for this one, it’s Jeri Ryan. More on her later).

Fan Participation: Star Wars vs Star Trek

I hope that I don't have to tell you that I'm a Star Wars fan. I've been less demonstrative of my love of Trek, partially because that's how Trekkies/Trekkers roll (all logical and all that crap) and partially because JJ Abrams seems to have used the last two Star Trek outings to audition to direct Star Wars Episode VII. But I've lived inside the fan bases of both of these franchises and they are very different. I think one key difference comes down to how they are nurtured by their respective frachise owners, Paramount and Lucasfilm: the originality that Paramount nurtures versus the inclusion that Lucasfilms promotes.

Initially, there wasn’t much to tell them apart. Both had conventions, comic books, paperback new adventures, and not much more, then things changed...

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