I didn’t think it would happen to me. But I’m finally Trekked out.
Star Trek was so 20th Century anyhow. It’s a new millennium. Let’s evolve. Let’s acknowledge that Star Trek was one fairly cool TV show and surely a powerful meme for a lot of us. But its time is over. It’s time for Trekkies to get a different life and move on.
Admittedly I’ve been on the downward slope for a long time. I usually wasn’t allowed to watch the original TV show it, and caught most episodes on reruns. Much of it was, and still is, excruciatingly bad, but for its time it seemed brilliant. (Compared to “Land of the Giants”, “Time Tunnel”, “Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea” and “Lost in Space”, the competition, it was positively brilliant.) Now the sets look cheap. William Shatner is a horrible actor and painful to watch play James T. Kirk. Occasionally a really good director could make him convincing. Nicholas Meyer, who directed Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan managed to do it. But usually Shatner reverted to form. After a while it was increasingly painful to watch the wreckage.
Star Trek: The Next Generation was a vast improvement, but even it stumbled in its first year and suffered from some continuity problems. (It got better when Riker got a beard.) STTNG revived my interest in the show. As a liberal Democrat I was very much a Jean Luc Picard fan, and to this day I am astonished by the quality of Patrick Stewart’s acting. I know there are a lot of Captain Kirk bigots out there, but Jean Luc was the captain that Kirk was not. Kirk was hot tempered and emotional and survived on tricks. Jean Luc was compassionate and thoughtful and you felt the presence of his command.
The movies were off and on. The even ones tended to be good, the odd ones sucked. STTNG movies have suffered from a similar fate.
I knew I was in trouble when the Star Trek: Nemesis came out and I couldn’t be bothered to see it. My loss I guess. I’ve heard it was pretty good. But as happened to the original cast, STTNG cast is old now too. Even my heartthrob Marina Sirtis is suffering from a sagging face and breasts.
The one thing that might bring me back is a movie with the Borg in it. Star Trek: The Borg Encounter is in production right now and should be out this year. The Borg were absolutely the creepiest villains ever created. I loved all the shows and the movies with the Borg in it. Even Sauron (from “Lord of the Rings”) cannot seriously compete with the Borg for the dubious title of most awful enemy of all time. Klingons and Romulans don’t even raise my eyebrow anymore.
I didn’t like it when STTNG ended but it had seven years and it was about time. I was seeing the same plots over and over again. It went out well.
I tried to watch Star Trek: Deep Space Nine but couldn’t get into anything other than the Ferrengi. It was too shoot ’em up for me, but the Ferrengi were hoots:Republicans and Libertarians of the 23rd century run amok! They were the perfect way to laugh at the Reaganism and neo-conservatism of the time.
I was disgusted with Star Trek: Voyager. I thought it was cool to have a female Captain but that was about it. Blasting them across the galaxy was just a gimmick. But it didn’t take long before it became more plot repetition. We’d seen these plots before. Actually we had seen them many times. The words were spoken by new characters, but nothing had really changed.
I watched a couple episodes of Enterprise but other than the Vulcan’s curves and one cute dog there was not much there to spur me to watch more. I got out of the habit. Going back in time didn’t seem to make it any more interesting.
Its time is up. Thank you to Gene Roddenberry and the rest of the crew for a nice ride. I enjoyed the couple of conventions I attended. It was nice to meet Majel Roddenberry one time, and lots of cool Trekkies. I’ve enjoyed some of the better fan fiction. When you were good you were really, really good. Sometimes you were really bad. You also had a lot of mediocrity. But it’s dead Jim. It’s time to put Star Trek into its historical package and evolve.