Fifty years is an enormous milestone, especially when you're talking about the relatively short history of television shows. So why on Earth and Vulcan did CBS and Paramount fail to capitalise on Star Trek's 50th anniversary?
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When Star Trek fans fight about the best Trek show, nine times out of 10 they're arguing about the original series versus The Next Generation. Obviously, both shows are excellent and fundamental to the franchise, but they aren't the best Trek ever put on television. I believe that honour belongs to Deep Space Nine and praise the prophets, do I love it.
As with so many franchises that have managed to last decades, there's a wealth of Star Trek material out there for old fans and new fans to devote their time to. Two amazing, possible insane fans have looked at the massive number of Star Trek books and charted out how they all interact with each other and when they take place in canon.
Star Trek isn't really known as a comedy, and on its face, neither is The Voyage Home. It's about the Earth being threatened by mysterious aliens, and Kirk discovering the only hope of communicating with them is via humpback whales, which are long since extinct. But somehow, combining the two results in a fish (whale?)-out-of-water comedy that's one of Star Trek's best films.
Star Trek could have been gayer. But in the '80s I didn't care. I was twee and my biggest Star Trek concern in 1987 was where the hell Sulu and Uhura were and why was there a small bald British man wearing a red shirt on the bridge. But later... later I wanted to know where the gay was. Stuff close to my heart, you know?
Star Trek's ideals don't sit all that well with your average video game. Trek's idealistic view of the future mostly dealt with conflict through discussion rather than liberal phaser blasts to the face, and video games are usually the other way around. That's why a first-person shooter in the Star Trek universe should never have worked. Until it did.
This episode should have never worked. It was a one-off, inconsequential story about characters we've never seen before nor would ever see again. It had no battles, no enemies, no star trekking of any kind. And yet, "The Inner Light" from Star Trek: The Next Generation lives on; not just as one of the best episodes of Star Trek, but as one of the finest pieces of modern television. And I'm not the only one who thinks so.
Having already restored the original Starship Enterprise and put it back on display, the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum needed to find another way to celebrate Star Trek's birthday today. So it commissioned extraterrestrial linguist Mark Okrand to record special audio tours of the museum in Klingon, to accommodate visitors from Qo'noS.
On September 8, 1966, exactly 50 years ago today, the very first episode of Star Trek aired on television. More than just science fiction, it dared to imagine a future for humanity where it had moved past war, inequality, and poverty, replacing them with tolerance, exploration, and hope. And it's not an exaggeration to say that Star Trek changed the world.
It's a good idea to make sure your affairs are in order before beaming down to a mysterious new planet wearing a red Starfleet uniform, but what if you were wearing a pre-damaged uniform first? Maybe whatever aggressive alien race you were about to face would assume you'd already been phasered to death, and leave you alone.
There have been many, many Star Trek books out there. Some have delved into the histories of our main characters, some continued the story where the show left off, and others fleshed out characters and species we'd only glimpsed for a second in the show. How Much for Just the Planet? does none of that, instead trying to be world's first text-based musical comedy.
When most people think of Star Trek, they of course think of Kirk and Spock. This isn't surprising, as they were the star and the break-out character of the series, but it's easy to forget that they were two members of a triumvirate that made up the essence of the show. Ship's doctor Leonard "Bones" McCoy was the third, and just as integral in making Star Trek a joy to watch.
Star Trek's Holodeck technology could conjure up pretty much any scenario you could imagine, but there were always a select few that the crews of the Enterprise, DS9 and Voyager would always return to... some more enjoyable than others. Here are every one of those recurring holoprograms, from worst to best.