02nd May2009

argh choo too NERDY!?

by jerad.formby

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Speculating on what Fan Nods Might Be in The New Movie

All right, brothers and sisters, I have a fresh bowl of Corn Flakes with a special Star Trek offer on the back of the box and a handful of people I know have already gotten to see the new Star Trek movie. I have to say, I’m a little jealous –afterall I have been looking forward to the sucka since 2006 when Abrams released us the first ever image… something he made on his laptop.

I have that item pictured here with something Nicholas Meyer whipped up for his daddy to understand Star Trek II.

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I thought the idea of bringing us a young Kirk and a young Spock sounded just this side of perfect. Like so many Star Trek fans, I had fantasies about what it might entail –what might be included in the film and what would be “overlooked.” Then it came out that Kirk was going to be really young –like Cadet age. I thought that was a super-bold choice and I still feel like it is.

We’ve been promised lots of nuggets for being fans. Let’s speculate on what they might be!

Previously on Hey Star Trek!

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***artwork from Star Trek: Countdown, artist David Messina, IDW Publisher***

So with Star Trek risking too many nerdy references, it’s important to reflect on what one might want to see and on what just might be too much. I’ll start with everyone’s favorite:

The Kobayashi Maru

This is the famous “no-win scenario” that was introduced to us in Star Trek II: The Wraith of Khan. It’s a famous test that is given to all prospective Starfleet leaders. It basically throws a would-be captain into a simulation where there is no way to escape insurmountable odds. The point of the test is to determine if a candidate has the right “character’ to take command.

This is also one of Kirk’s most famous accomplishments. The lore tells us that Kirk “re-programmed” the scenario to make it possible to win the situation –after having taken the test two times before. When “academy talk” began to buzz around this new movie, this was one of the things that many a deep nerd and some passing nerds wanted to see in the movie.

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I would be happy to see this scenario not presented in the film. The main reason is that I already know what happens. I know how Kirk beats the scenario, so I don’t need five to eight precious minutes of new material taking time out to give us this weird “nerd-nut-nod.” Should the Kobayashi Maru play into this film, I would prefer it demonstrate one of the times Kirk failed at the scenario –possibly setting up for a re-programming scene in the next movie or the last movie.

The Kobayashi Maru served a specific and dare I say “perfect” dramatic need in Star Trek II, so unless our screenwriters have found a way to make it even more awesome and even more badass, I say our time in the film would be better served showing us something new.

Kirk’s Love Life

Kirk gets around. It’s often joked about, but in his academy days, Kirk really got around.

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Here’s hoping that there will be a nod to any number of Kirk’s exes. It would be nice to see him at least flirt with “Ruth” or “Janice” or “Ruth” or “Areel”. This sort of invention could be very brief and not involve a whole lot of our time and it would given stunning, show-stopping incite to our existing canon. It would also play well with the ladies.

I didn’t mention “Carol Marcus” because that relationship would be better served later. Everybody knows there’s already a sequel being planned and the relationship that actually produced Kirk’s only son would be better served where there could be more time and treatment to it.

Kirk as a ladies man in his first movie as a Cadet should feature or at least mention one of these old flames who turned up later on The Original Series in one capacity or another. That would make me happy. That sort of nerd-nut-nod would be very welcome in my book.

Kirk’s Extreme Past

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One of the most fascinating aspects of Kirk’s young life is that he lived off-world in a colony called Tarsus IV. On that planet, he witnessed mass genocide at the ripe age of 14. Kirk was one of a handful of people who could identify the homicidal colony leader Kodos.

I’ve seen all of the trailers and we do get to see Kirk at the age of 12 speeding around Iowa in a fast car. Maybe after that and some of the “at home” drama that comes after that, it would be nice to know that he went to live on Tarsus IV. Of course, if this is completely left out I will understand. I can see how it’s an odd –dramatic misstep to break up Kirk’s background just to demonstrate a nerd-nut-nod that could end up distracting from the story or the pacing.

Maybe in two years, we’ll get to see a 14 year old Kirk being saved from Tarsus IV because that event will somehow inform the sequel’s story.

Kirk’s Buds

We know that Kirk dealt with a bully named Finnegan. He was an upperclassman while Kirk was a new cadet. Kirk hated this guy and never got to beat his backside until a planet “invented” an exact likeness of the antagonist. All of our previews have demonstrated a Kirk that doesn’t put up with any crap, so it will be interesting to see if Finnegan shows up and has his way with Kirk in a way that supports what’s come before.

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I can extrapolate from what Kirk’s said about himself in his youth. We know that he was very serious (self-described as “grim.”) And it was this seriousness that made him such a target for Finnegan. If this movie features an “Irish” guy if just for a second making fun of Kirk, this nerd-nut-nod will have been satisfied.

And in those class rooms, it would be nice to have a professor named John Gill (they have to have names anyway, right?) and mention of a Captain named Garth as a hero to Kirk would be great in walking the hallway babble. Bah! The Garth stuff might be a little too nerdy.

Gary Mitchell is another of Kirk’s old buddies. This guy could even be described as one of Kirk’s best friends. We know from the original series that Mitchell knew Kirk in the academy (and possibly even before). What we don’t know for sure is if it happened while Kirk was a student or if Mitchell later became a student under Kirk –although Okuda might argue that Kirk was definitely a teacher, the dialog strictly does not say.

This sort of relationship is something that could come later in my opinion, especially if you want the “little blonde lab assistant” to be Carol Marcus.

So, just to recap:

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So here’s to our new movie. I’m as excited as you are. Continuity aside, nerd-nut-nods aside, I think it’s gonna be pretty rockin’. At least more rockin’ than the Star Wars foolios got.

I have a side note. Spock has noted his first name’s unpronounceable. Were our boys up to the challenge? Can’t wait to find out.

I’ll see you again before it premiers.

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  • Damon

    Well I guess your going to be disappointed! I have been to the promised land and I met Jesus (Kirk). The commericals have said it’s not your fathers Star Trek and they are right! While there are nods to the fans they are almost always in the background almost. Most of the things you talked about in your blog aren’t addressed some are I’m not giving away any spoilers other than to say…THIS IS NOT YOUR FATHERS STAR TREK!

    My name is Damon and I can’t wait until thursday…Good Luck!

  • http://twitter.com/super_spock jerad.formby

    I’m with you 🙂 The less the better 🙂 And it should read IT’S NOT YOUR DADDY’S STAR TREK! Father’s just awkward!

  • zancho

    LMAO at that photo! it dosen’t get old…
    All i really want to see is that ship getting built. in fact i want a documentary what follows the creation of the enterprise! a full fictional two hours of manufacturing!
    yup, that’s what i want for christmas….

  • Neon Glo

    I saw the movie a few days ago and WISH I could tell you what you’ve tripped over…but I guess I can’t. BUT I totally disagree with your wish to see Kirk’s old girls. Why??? And why do think we females would appreciate it? I couldn’t care less, myself. I DO wish we knew Spock’s name, already. It’s over 40 years; they should just TELL us!!
    But my favorite memorable line was one of McCoy’s…wait for it…it’s…oddly favorable to Spock…

  • jerad.formby

    Kirk’s old girls would be cool because… girls rock :)They especially rock when we know their names 🙂

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