08th Sep2009

archoo ona WARPATH!?

by jerad.formby

happy birthday star trek

It turns out that the fan fervor for a new Star Trek series is reaching another level. The fervor might be coming to an email box near you! More on that later, but right out of the gate, let’s see just what small screen Star Trek might mean.

Fans really want to see Star Trek return to the small screen in a very big way. We at Hey Star Trek! can’t really blame them –in fact we might even argue that Star Trek’s best format is on television and not in motion pictures.

We aren’t sure who agrees or disagrees with that sentiment, but surely we can all agree that there are some episodes of TNG that have rocked us more than any of it’s movies. A little bit in each of us might recognize that without TOS the emotional impact of Captain Kirk movies could go lost on so many.

Bad Robot simply ended one story and started another one

What we at Hey Star Trek! are here to tell you right now is that Star Trek is in good hands and its future is sound. It is true, J.J. Abrams and his company Bad Robot and Paramount Pictures have modified your property. That should simply be allowed to happen. It’s okay.

Or go on thinking of them as Timeline bandits.

bad robot is here to steal your star trek

It’s been mentioned on Trekcast. It’s kicked around by many a fan at a barbeque –why can’t there be another series right now? Wouldn’t it be cool if? I think they should do… and on and on.

I wouldn’t be talking about a new series right now, except that I got a curious email today. It was one of those pieces that is forwarded and forwarded again. The email has an original author and a very direct goal.

Dear Friend,

Some of us have gotten together and decided to write a letter to persuade Paramount Pictures to make another Star Trek series following the timeline that we all know and love. The more letters Paramount receive regarding a new Star Trek series, the higher the likelihood that a new series will in fact come to be.

If you are interested in contacting Paramount about a new Star Trek series, reply to this message and I will provide Paramount Pictures contact information. Remember, fans have power.

Thank you for taking the time to read this message,
[author’s name removed by Hey Star Trek!]

who exists to protect star trek from thieves

The email is written strictly from the point of view that Star Trek has been hijacked or stolen from the fans and now a suggestion or an ultimatum is being submitted to Paramount Pictures in order to receive a new series that the fans themselves can actually get behind.

There is something wrong with this proposal.

We don’t want to discourage anyone from participating in this email campaign if they feel like they must, we just beg you to consider a few things before you waste your own very valuable time.

Before you start typing, remember that Paramount Pictures has no say in small screen Star Trek. That is reserved for CBS which, I believe, holds all rights in the development of any new series. It’s entrusted with the development of theme parks as well, Star Trek: The Experience 2.0, so keep that in mind.

Also, we implore you to really think about what you are asking for. Even if the entire campaign freezes right now and the emails are sent instead to CBS (where they might stand a chance), what is it you really want?

A new Star Trek series to be made by who exactly?

bad robot makes a case

We’ve all heard rumors that Bryan Fuller is interested in putting something together and is that the Star Trek you want to see? It’s said that he wants to do something “1960’s.” He’s very vague about his very specific ideas for series, but mentions he’d like to see Rosario Dawson on his show. He lightly endorses Angela Bassett as a possible casting choice for a Captain.

His goal would be to re-invigorate the franchise and make it more accessible –as Ronald D. Moore did with Battlestar Galactica –his words, not mine!

Other than that, everything’s silent on the Fuller front. He acknowledges that such decisions are left up to other people and he just felt like expressing interest.

Does that Star Trek work for you?

Hey Star Trek! verdict: New ship. New captain. Familiar era. We hope you can hear us yawn over the internet.

the rage of star trek fans

J. Michael Straczynski was Johnny-on-the-Spot with a new series proposal when the plug got pulled on Enterprise back in 2004. He approached CBS with a proposed treatment of the series he wanted to see and he even made it available online for fans to read through.

Have you read it?

Hey Star Trek! took a look when it first hit. The ideas were exciting, but we can also see how they would be controversial for the fan base. In point of fact, Straczynski kicked off the proposal by explaining something Marvel Comics did to rejuvenate it’s many properties.

Marvel Comics made a new timeline. The idea was to make Spidey and friends “fresh” again and not bogged down underneath the weight of their own history.

He pitched what the email campaign is against.

bad robot on the run

In his proposal, we would encounter a newly casted James Kirk, Spock, and McCoy. And because of the suggested ‘alternate universe’ approach, you can bet that this new triumvirate would rock all kinds of mad peril in their own universe separate from what came before.

Straczynski was bold enough to suggest that the reason Star Trek had finally tuckered out was because it kept trying to re-invent itself in ways that continued to distance itself from the original model. His argument was that the further you got from the original cast, the more derivative and tired Star Trek got.

His proposal was to re-introduce the concept and the characters from the original show to a new audience. What really knocked my socks off in the proposal was that he wanted to throw us fans some really sweet nuggets. He wanted to grab four or five episodes from each season of TOS and throw them into the new show.

The shows would be re-addressed and re-played for the modern audience. A “Trouble With Tribbles” redux would have been in the mix. He also wanted to fatten each season out with four or five episodes to be stand alone science fiction stories written by the genre’s hottest talents –just as Roddenberry had done in the 1960’s.

The remaining episodes, Straczynski envisioned, were to be devoted to a series long arc. He wanted this arc to carry the show through the entire five year mission. He wanted the mission of the Enterprise to be secret (known only by Kirk, Spock, and McCoy) and vital to the survival of the Federation.

All of those ideas are fantastic. All of those ideas work to make Star Trek a new, more modern, and more accessible series.

CBS turned him down.

when star trek fans attack

Which, given some of the fan response to the new movie, might have been wise. It seems that fans are still married to continuity. Fans still want to be rewarded for their devotion with nods, pats on the back, and inside jokes.

Many fans want their box sets to not go to waste as irrelevant or somehow “written away.” The exercise of this desire is a highly unproductive and dare we say “illogical” use of any Star Trek fans’ time.

Because the original timeline had to go.

The timeline of old had (has) run its course, gentle readers. It is time to move on. Don’t think for one second that we don’t love TOS, TNG, DS9, VOY, and ENT as it all was. Keep in mind that there are over 700 hours of material devoted to that original timeline and over the course of almost forty years, those hard working writers and producers couldn’t even keep it straight the whole time!

bad robot escapes

The Bad Robot approach to Star Trek is the perfect choice for the material. I know the movie isn’t popular with everyone and people all have their reasons for hating on it, loving on it, or reluctantly accepting it –but like it or not, that’s Star Trek now.

And it really is very good.

If you think it’s too much like Star Wars and not enough like Star Trek, then we suggest that you decided it wouldn’t be good before or while you watched. You didn’t actually watch. There are true, very true, Star Trek moments sprinkled all over that movie and if you’d had opened both of your eyes, you would have seen them!

It makes me shake my head in wonder when I see so many Star Trek fans who don’t see what a gift the movie was. There is such ingratitude, a general lack of appreciation, and, dare I say, an all out lack of respect for everything Bad Robot tried to do for us.

bad robot has an evil plan

They invented a new genre for us. A pre-quel/reboot.

How in Jiminy Cricket’s name is that even possible!? They did it anyway. For us. They wanted your box sets to serve you and go on serving you. They told you straight up that everything was relevant –heck, they even picked up Spock from that cheesy TNG cross-over to make it work for you!

But you don’t even care.

You don’t care that they bent over backward to build a scene where the characters all discussed the nature of the universe and alternate timelines. This very Star Trek moment was likely lost on every bubble gum kid in the theater, but they were still engrossed!

They were engrossed just as you were when Picard was pitched nanites as a means of killing the Borg.

star trek will continue to gain popularity

That crazy frat kid down the row watched Kirk tell Spock “Spock, it’ll work.” And he knew it was the perfect thing to say. He knew it was what had to be said. Just like you knew that Spock would say, “Or the one” in Wrath of Frickin’ Khan!

We at Hey Star Trek! encourage you to follow your dreams. Write all the letters you want to (but please send them to the right place). Push, prod, pull, insist, champion, and beg for your new series, but be careful what you ask for.

Are you really asking for a new captain with a new ship and a new cast? Do you really want to get to know a new actor and make comparisons to other ships, captains, and officers? So that you might clap your hands when they mention Data, Odo, or Seven of Nine? Is that all Star Trek is to you? Simple references that rub your back?

Or is it watching characters work a crisis together despite physical or philosophical differences? Is it watching a story like that framed against the awesomeness of space?

If you chose the latter paragraph, then I ask you to watch Star Trek: 2009 again and be sure to thank your lucky stars it was made by people who cared.

After all, we could have gotten the Land of the Lost treatment.

I mean, why not? Trek has been considered camp before. Would that choice not have seemed obvious?

the alternative to trek respect

Don’t tell me Bad Robot doesn’t care. It’s about time you started.

I liked the Straczynski version. It was clever and helped me to see that Star Trek can exist in many forms. Maybe that helped prepare me for May 8, 2009. That might explain my lack of shell shock. But altered trek is still trek, just ask Yesterday’s Enterprise.

I adore Trek in any form, even if its seen through a mirror.

I’m pretty sure the folks behind this campaign can’t say the same. They would prefer making Star Trek smaller, more similar, and most importantly more referenced in on itself. They oppose a more accessible, more new, more fun, and plainly more widespread incarnation.

I encourage them to push, because I’m not one to tell people ‘no.’

But we won’t be writing in. We want Paramount and CBS to continue this new path independent of fan needs and desires, because frankly, we don’t always know what we want. We want to see Trek in trusted hands and want them to take it where ever it may boldly go.

not trying to pick a fight just putting it out there guys

the new end credits twitter button


Why do we feel like we’re over Tarantino?
Yeah. Don’t like First Contact.*gulp*
What the heck was Star Trek: The Experience!?
Chris Pine’s Kirk and a New Five Year Mission (fiction)
Stardates and quadrants.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is the best one.
Star Trek just might be too futuristic to have an army.
Syfy is a cool idea. Warehouse 13 isn’t.
A whole website devoted to hating Abrams trek!? Surely you jest!
Don’t like a nuked fridge? You call him, Dr. Jones, DOLL!
Let’s go to the holodeck!
FOX network, I feel the good in you, the conflict!
Seeking out strange new potential in Abrams’ universe. (fiction)
A little more information about your Hey Star Trek! blogger
Baby steps with Star Trek: Voyager
Hell you say? Film language of Gran Torino!?
A Brief History of Fan Work and Tim Russ’ Of Gods and Men
What the hell do you mean Episode III’s the best one!?
Baby Steps With Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
Baby Steps With Star Trek and Star Trek: The Next Generation
Hey Star Trek! Saw Terminator: Salvation
Meditating on J.J. Abrams’ Lens Flares
Can you tell me more about Trekcast?
Hey! You hated Abrams Trek? Color me unsurprised.
What you show somebody who doesn’t know Star Trek at all
Nerd-Nut-Nods in New Star Trek Movie
Why you don’t need IMAX Star Trek
Star Trek: The Motion Picture
The real reason New Star Wars movies suck
Star Trek continuity whores need to give it a rest
The new Doctor Who . . . or lack thereof!
Why the new Star Trek movie is gonna be cool
Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse
How the Borg went from badass to blowing chunks
Some Star Trek characters get no love
Ronald D. Moore’s Battlestar Galactica
Why Watchmen’s So Bad
Star Trek Optimism
Ugly Romulans and Vulcans

time bandits rules

  • VegasAndorian

    Amen. I have to say, I wouldn’t be enthused by a Trek series – maybe after the third movie (reboot era). In fact, I would go so far as to say that a new series would be missing the point that I feel Abrams understood: for all the optimistic future, tolerance, positive message about humanity, etc. Trek’s popularity is the crew (vis-a-vis the cast), the characters are what make it work so well. Another crew/series would be lose that.

    Months ago a forum discussing Trek actually suggested a series by the current cast would be great (I agree) and then went on to comment that actors like Simon Pegg would probably be very happy with the job security of a series (woefully ignorant of Hollywood). That’s not going to happen.

  • http://google.com/335 sandra742

    Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.

  • http://dkleparek.blogspot.com David Kleparek

    Throwing random photos of girls throughout your post is hilarious. I was like: “hey what’s that chick doing behind those other photos?”

  • http://www.daytonward.com Dayton Ward

    Nice post, dude!

    If you liked TOS with a bit of a mystery bent to it, I recommend the Star Trek: Vanguard series from Pocket Books. Of course, I’m admittedly quite biased…..

  • Steve

    Once again, Jerad, I couldn’t agree more. I find it very exciting that my lifelong favorite Tv show of all time is moving into the immmense pop culture pantheon that was previously reserved for the likes of Sherlock Holmes, James Bond, and all the various incarnations of Superman (among others). Let the new Treks begin. Some we’ll like, some we’ll hate. But frankly, even with the previous ST material, it was ever thus (*cough* ST:V *cough*)

  • http://www.huntcastshow.com Rumulan Ale

    Nail on the head!

    New series idea. How bout, it’s all about the ensigns and enlisted, with occasional appearances by new time-line bridge crew?
    If you were a fan of the West Wing, you will understand what I mean. The original idea behind that series was to have it about the staff, the underlings, the nameless folks that make things work. Only rarely was the president (Martin Sheen) to make an appearance.
    Picture a fresh batch of youngsters shuttling over to the Enterprise for their first assignment. How do they get over their ego, their jitters, and insecurities? How do they earn respect from old-timers, working in the least glamorous assignments on the ship? Can they get the job done and work their way up the ladder?
    All of the wonder of discovery that could be explored thru the eyes of a crew member, while they try and stay off of Spock’s sh*t list, lol.
    Could be epic.

  • KermmitTheFrog

    Couldn’t agree more.

    I would also like to add, I like Darren’s idea of direct to DVD movies of Star Trek. Think how much better the films ST5:The Final Frontier, ST9:Insurrection, and ST10:Nemesis may have been recieved by the fans if they were direct to DVD. They weren’t much more than glorified 2 hour episodes in my opinion. This format has worked for expanding the Star Gate franchise. I personally would like to see this format come to fruition with established characters. The benifits to us fans will be more Trek without being overwelmed. Too much of a good thing can make you sick of it, and I wish to remain a loyal fan for life!

    Live Long and Prosper!

  • Matt

    Sorry, I can’t support a group movie by people who have a condescending attitude towards Trek fans.
    If they wanted a remake, fine.
    But don’t add this alternate timeline BS and tell me this is not a remake.
    For all intents and purposes, that the same damn thing.
    And yes I would have preferred a new ship and new crew.

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