Thank you, “Star Trek” – from an author who's also a Trekkie
Amazing, that “Star Trek” is celebrating its 50th anniversary as yet another movie hits theaters this month. The first TV series was launched in September of 1966. I loved that series. I loved “Star Trek: The Next Generation” in the late 80s and early 90s. I liked “Star Trek: Voyager” in the late 90s. I’ve seen all the “Star Trek” movies. I think my favorite is “The Voyage Home,” because, well, it’s just so campy. (The scene on the bus – LOL.)
Now, I’m not saying all the shows and movies were great art. Admittedly, some were dorky duds. But once you fall in love with a cast of characters, even the duds are worth watching because they keep you close to those characters as they develop and expand.
Some of my favorites: Spock (of course.) The raised eyebrow. The mind meld. The ears. I also loved Data. Some of the best storylines involved Data’s efforts to become more human and less android. And, like Spock, Data also provided some of the best comedy. I also liked Geordi in TNG and the doctor and Seven of Nine in Voyager.
Which brings me to one of the scariest and most successful villains of all time – in my humble opinion: The Borg. (Seven of Nine was a rescued Borg.) The Borg – “resistance is futile, you will be assimilated” – was a race of cyborgs, basically, who “assimilated” other life forms. The stuff of nightmares.
One of the reasons I so enjoyed “Star Trek” over the years was the attempt at creating an enlightened universe and tackling tough issues, from war and racism to imperialism and sexism. Another is the cool science and technology. “National Geographic” has an interesting article called “Star Trek” is right about almost everything.” Fascinating.
So, for sure, I’ll be seeing the new movie. But I’m thinking it would be fun to re-watch some of my favorite TV episodes. From the original series: “All Our Yesterdays,” in which Spock reverts to the violent ways of ancient Vulcans; “The Inner Light,” in which Capt. Picard lives a whole other life on an alien planet and then wakes up on the bridge; and the shows that involve time travel and alternate universes.
My own writing isn't Star Trekky. My Sci-fi isn't as far in the future and I don't write about space travel. But "Star Trek" did help pique my interest in Sci-fi.