What is April 5, you ask? In Star Trek terms, it’s where we first encounter aliens. It happens a mere 42 years from now. With any luck, I’ll still be breathing — well into my 90s, but hey, here to see if there is any truth in fiction.
Yes, we’ve come across the birthday celebration of First Contact Day: April 5, 2021. Today on StarTrek.com a celebration of this historic day in Star Trek lore.
April 5—42 years from now—it’s “First Contact Day” in the Star Trek universe. It’s the day that, give or take some attempted intervention by the Borg, humanity’s Zefram Cochrane meets Vulcans for the first time, catapulting humanity into a galactic standard way beyond Earth. To mark the momentous day, we can expect…some news?
On Monday, Star Trek’s official website and CBS will host an all-day marathon and panels covering the franchise’s past and future. For viewers in the United States, celebrations kick off at 12 p.m. Eastern
Keep your eyes peeled on StarTrek.com today. They have a full roster of events and activities starting at noon ET (GMT-5).
It would be a good day today to catch up on some Star Trek. If you have Paramount+, you can catch up on all things Star Trek, including the newest animated series: Star Trek: Lower Decks (not recommended), which we reviewed some of the first season, or Star Trek: Picard (also, not recommended), or even better, relive the best to date animated Star Trek series (very much recommended!) that we’ve been reviewing Saturdays — and will come to a close with the last of the 22 episodes this coming Saturday 4/10/2021: The Counter-Clock Incident.
Even if you don’t have Paramount+ and/or no desire to subscribe, other streaming channels do have some Star Trek. Netflix still streams Star Trek: The Original Series (all 3 seasons), Star Trek: The Next Generation (all 7 seasons), Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (7 seasons), Star Trek: Voyager (7 seasons) and Star Trek: Enterprise (4 seasons). Amazon Prime Video also streams some, if not all (I didn’t fully check) these TV series.
I’ve seen all of some of these series episodes and only some of others. I’ve seen all of the Star Trek movies to date, although I don’t think I’ve reviewed all of them yet (again, didn’t check). Since they aren’t making new Star Trek that I’m as excited about right now, I’ll probably keep working through the older stuff. Haven’t completely given up hope on new Star Trek, though.
What about you? Will you be watching anything Star Trek oriented today? Will you be celebrating First Contact day?.
Is this an April Fool’s joke on all of us a week early(?). While we’re posting this on April 1, it was a story that bubbled to the forefront a week earlier. It’s one of those raise your eyebrows really high stories.
After seeing The Father ⭐️½ recently, I’m wondering if maybe William Shatner should have starred in it instead of Anthony Hopkins. That’s not a slight against Captain Kirk, but when he claims at age 90 that he has “never” watched any of Star Trek The Original Series I’m extremely skeptical that he simply has forgotten.
“I have never watched Star Trek,” he said. “There are many episodes I don’t know, there are some movies I don’t know.”
He added that he did watch one of the franchise’s many movies, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, but only because he directed it.
I believe he hasn’t watched any episodes lately, after all TOS was made in the mid 60s. That’s almost 50 years ago. Shatner’s classic over-emphasis acting as Kirk had to be something he watched back then, especially when the series took off. He never wanted to see how the TV series was edited, especially when he directed Star Trek V? Yeah, the one Star Trek he admits watching?
Just doesn’t pass the smell test. I mean, think about all the Star Trek conventions, the fans, the lore, much of which Shatner has shunned, it seems, but I’m having a hard time believing this isn’t his age, some sort of senility in play, versus any sort of reality.
Shatner is legendary. He’s played Kirk, of course (Star Trek), TJ Hooker and Denny Crane (Boston Legal) just to name three iconic characters on three different TV series. He’s also getting up there in age. 90 is the new 80, so hopefully — if he’s able to — he’ll continue to star in other movies and TV shows.. Betty White has done it, so why not him?
Respectfully, I’m not buying that he “never” watched Star Trek. Do you?
My first reaction to a Worf spinoff series was, something like smelling a rotten food in a trash can. After reading Michael Dorn’s proposed outline for a story, however, I’m not as turned off to the concept.
They start letting other races into the Klingon world. And the only way they can do that is by letting in Starfleet officers. That’s sort of the way it’s done. ‘We’ll let in other people, but first Starfleet offers because we understand Starfleet. They’re soldiers, we’re soldiers.’ The second thing they have to do is their resources are limited and dwindling, because the Klingon universe is just like the Federation. They have planets and worlds and societies that they own, but they do it in a brutal way. And so they have to go out to every one of these worlds and either give them their freedom, or try to work with them, which is something that’s anathema to Klingons. And since Worf opened his big mouth and said, “This is what we have to do,” then they say, “Okay, then you’re the guy that has to go out to all these worlds.” And every world is different. Some worlds are rebelling. Some worlds want to be part of the Klingon Empire. Some worlds want to be independent.
And so every episode is that. So Worf is no longer part of Starfleet, but a member of the Klingon Defense Force? Exactly. This is the Klingon Empire. He’s a captain aboard a ship.
Before commenting on the idea above, which is good, why does a Worf series in concept seem so unappealing? Worf just wasn’t a very interesting character to me in TNG. The episodes he was featured were among the least entertaining. I don’t rewatch those episodes like ones where Data was featured. Data is the character I’d be most interested in a spin-off series. More than Picard, more than Riker, much more than Wesley Crusher or Troi or Beverly Crusher. Heck, I might be more interested in a Colm Meaney as the transporter operator series than any of them — except Data.
Worf and the Klingons are kind of boring to me. Warrior race a bit tiresome after awhile. Don’t really care about their traditions and rituals, most of them involving pain or eating disgusting foods. Just don’t care that much for Klingons.
That said, I kind of warmed up to Dorn’s idea. It could provide for a different kind of Star Trek that’s still very much Star Trek. Most of my issues with Picard and Lower Decks is that they don’t feel very much like Star Trek to me. The former more than the latter.
What do you think? Would you like to see a Star Trek series based on Worf?
The last we read, months ago it seems, Quentin Tarantino had moved on from the concept of an R-rated Star Trek film.
Yeah, it’s a bummer, because Star Trek needs something other than a J.J Abrams shot in the cinematic arm. Maybe they turn to Jason Blum’s team and do something lower budget and horror driven for a Star Trek movie? (sort of kidding)
It would have been a creative departure from the Star Trek we know, and reportedly might have been based on the Season 3 TOS episode “A Piece Of The Action” where an alien planet models the gangster era of the roaring 20s. Only bloodier, and more Tarantino and Rodriguez-like.
“You know, I haven’t [read a script],” Pine says. “I really, in terms of the Star Trek of it all, I wish I knew anything. I’m quite literally one of the last people ever to find out. So, I haven’t read that script, I don’t know where it is in development, I haven’t read the Noah Hawley script, I have no idea what’s happening in Star Trek land. But I love the character, I love the universe, I love my friends in it, you know, to have a Quentin take on it would be tremendously interesting and entertaining. You know, look, whatever happens, if I come back or not, it’s a great universe, it deserves to have a future, and I hope that is the case.”
I, too, would have been curious to see it, but it doesn’t seem like it’s going to happen, Mr. Pine. Tarantino has left an out to his goal of only directing 10 films, saying if he did Star Trek it might not count as one of his 10 films.
Pretty business savvy of him to limit the number of films he plans to make. That will draw more interest into his 10th film, whatever it is, because it could be his last. Something like music artists are doing with their farewell tours, often bogus, because several come back and do more tours and reunions later (cough, Motley Crue, ahem).
Paramount will be interested in doing more Trek for their new CBS All Access dubbed Paramount+ — despite most of it likely being a pale imitation of past Trek adventures — because streaming is where the production dollars are going these days, but not sure when we’ll see another Star Trek film (see: Paramount No Longer Making Star Trek Movies, Citing Not Enough Interest). Eventually we will see one, but no films are booked, as of this writing, anyway.
Chris Pine will just have to keep waiting to take the captain’s chair again. He made a good Shatner doppelganger, so stands to reason he’ll be invited to revisit the Kirk role again someday, if they make the film and he still looks the part.
One of the things we found neat at the Regal Cinebarre were the themed movie drinks and eats. Just caught that there is a new Star Trek drink recipe book called Star Trek Cocktails out offering both alcohol and some non-alcohol recipes.
The book features 40 cocktail recipes, each inspired by a different character, drink or moment in Star Trek history. The author Glenn Dakin has often tied the drink to a person, so for example we have Sisko’s Sazerac and Pike’s Mojave Mojito, because those drinks are form the cities that Sisko and Pike were born in. Other recipes such as Par’mach on the Beach are alien twists on familiar Earth recipes. Yet others take names from drinks such as a Samarian Sunset that were name checked on the show.
Is it just me that thinks only 40 recipes for a book that costs $22 on the pricey side? No offense to the author and publisher, but with the vast amount of Star Trek movie and TV shows, it would seem at least another zero should be on the end of that recipe total.
Episode #8 is now out for Star Trek: Lower Decks, if my interest and excitement for the show was there, I would be watching and reviewing right now. Nope.
After struggling to find any merit behind Star Trek: Picard, I doubted the desire to ever review another live action Star Trek TV series from Alex Kurtzman.
I might make an attempt to watch the first episode or two of Strange New Worlds, if it ever sees a release date, but definitely am not a fan of Discovery. Kurtzman’s five year contract seems to have been a colossal mistake for CBS, at least in my opinion.
(UPDATE 9/24/23 @ 5:43am PT: there are disputing reports that Paramount ever said what’s rumored in the other article source (multiple articles claimed the same thing was said by Paramount, but in fairness can’t find any press release or official Paramount statement confirming this). Believe what you want to believe, I guess, but we all know right now very little movie production is happening, Star Trek or otherwise. I tend to believe the original report that Paramount doesn’t want to proceed with any more Star Trek films at the present time. They never said never and why would they? But the whole idea of Tarantino getting involved officially is a pipe dream. Why would he waste his 10th and final film — according to him his tenth will be his last ever film — on a remake of an R-rated episode “Piece of Action” from TOS?)
They need somebody else to come in as showrunner. Somebody that can mine what truly makes Star Trek great. Somebody that will do something like Jon Favreau is doing with Star Wars TV right now a la The Mandalorian (season 2 is coming next month, woot!)
What I’m missing from Kurtzman Trek is the humanity, the fantastic alien adventures that enlighten and help the crew develop their characters and interaction with each other and future stories. Heck, I’m just plain missing likeable main characters.
Currently, we’re receiving Star Trek: Lower Decks, a not adult enough animated show and I kept watching each week hoping to return to the world — at least the kindred spirit — of the original Animated Series with a modern twist. The one from the 70s that I grew up watching and rewatching (and soon will be excitingly reviewing here).
I thought maybe with a Trek fan like Mike McMahan from Rick and Morty (see: Hey Trekkies, Mike McMahan is one of you), we’d see that same spirit and energy, but with a 2020 freshness. We’d get adult themes, a la Harley Quinn, but instead we’re subjected to TV-14 weak humor that doesn’t appeal to adults and probably not funny enough for teens either. You’ll have to ask them, as all our children are grown up and the grandchildren are much too young to care about what’s going on with Lower Decks.
Instead of enlightenment, Lower Decks is a story about a woman who doesn’t want to be on a Federation space ship doing anything except bitching and moaning. She’s a terrible example of what strong women characters like Uhura or Nurse Chapell have done in Star Trek.
A piece of advice from a disgruntled viewer to Beckett Mariner, “QUIT!” Just leave Starfleet and go hang out on future earth or some alien world doing whatever it is that you enjoy doing. Why make everybody around you so miserable all the time? The Lower Decks on the Cerritos doesn’t need or want you — your own captain mother doesn’t want you there — viewing audiences certainly don’t and your “friend”, Boimler definitely doesn’t. If he were only smart enough to realize that, of course.
Boimler? Man, if there was ever a male character that needed balls, it’s him. This guy is about as spineless as Play Doh. I kept hoping in one episode he’d just tell Mariner he didn’t want to be her friend any more. How much verbal abuse can any one guy take anyway? You can choose your friends, Boimler, really, you can. Can’t always choose the a-holes you have to work with, but friends? Yes, you can choose your friends.
Rick and Morty is more fun than Lower Decks. I just feel too many producing hands were stirring the Lower Decks pot, ruining whatever stew Mike McMahan tried to cook.
A few Lower Decks episodes watched to date have had brief moments, but the two main characters, the very weak Brad Boimler and overbearing, boisterous and whiny lower decks friend, Beckett Mariner were not characters I want to spend time watching any more. Today, with so many movies and TV shows to watch — and some that are ground breaking good — it’s just not worth it following any show that becomes a struggle to watch.
There are some characters in Lower Decks I would like to watch more of, but they are bit players. Ransom, that is number one, voiced by Jerry O’Connell, stands out. Also the head of security with the itchy trigger finger. That character might seem one-dimensional, but he has potential in the Trek universe for some fantastic stories. Even the captain of the Cerritos, the conflicted significant other of the admiral, with her doomy, gloomy daughter, seems like more fun to spotlight than the broken viewer interest Boimler and Mariner saga.
I realize the series is supposed to be about the lower decks characters, but I’d rather follow any other lower decks characters than Boimler and Mariner. There are moments we do get to see other lower decks characters, and some of them have semi-meaty stories, but it always goes back to the unlikable mains: Boimler and Mariner. Sigh.
Since the new half-hour animated series Lower Decks focuses on the lowly support crew of one of Starfleet’s “least important ships”, this could be a great opportunity to add some interesting characters to the Star Trek canon just like the original cartoon did with Arex and M’Ress.
Read that entire article linked, because it’s a shining example of what Star Trek: The Animated Series did for those of us that are long time Star Trek fans. I don’t consider myself a diehard Trekkie or anything, but love the original series and animated series and enjoyed TNG. A few of the movies have been really good (KHAN!) and some of the other TV that followed TNG (DS9, Voyager). Maybe my comparison of Lower Decks to any of this was unfair. It wasn’t the original animated series and it wasn’t as edgy or smart as Harley Quinn, it was just some sort of in between half-baked concept that didn’t work.
Don’t want to assault readers with too many episode reviews for any TV show of “I hate this” because what’s the point? If someone dislikes something and it’s not his/her job to review it, then the smart play is to bounce. That’s was Picard and now, that’s Lower Decks. I wanted to love this, really I did, but it just let me down too many times to continue.
There is another alternative for both us: find something we enjoy better. The final four episodes of Lower Decks will be labeled as NR. I’m not watching them or reviewing them, maybe never. They might be the best episodes of season one, and will likely never know. I watched episode 7 multiple times, but it kept bringing me back to Beckett Mariner being the most unlikable female animated main character I’ve ever had the displeasure of viewing. Her weak male sidekick, Boimler is right up — or down, depending on your perspective — there.
No, I’m not recommending watching Lower Decks or any other Kurtzman Trek to anyone. If someone reading enjoys Lower Decks or Picard or Discovery, that’s awesome, these shows didn’t work for me. Doesn’t mean I’m totally giving up on watching any Star Trek going forward, but can’t remember a time I’m more disinterested in the current era of Star Trek than right now. I’m going back to a warmer, friendlier Star Trek era.
CBS, fire Kurtzman and hire somebody else. Anybody else!
I shouldn’t take the clickbait, and yet frustratingly am. No, no, no to a bisexual Captain James T. Kirk in any Star Trek ever.
Don’t care what the sexual orientation is of any new character, or a character that comes out with a different sexual orientation if it makes sense in the story. If you have been reading here for awhile, then you already know I’m very consistent about this. I actually support LGBQT+ in movies and TV shows, just prefer that they not rework older, established characters into “new” reimaginings.
The nine reasons provided in the quoted article do not change my mind.
Do you see James Tiberius Kirk as bisexual? He was getting it on with female aliens, crewmates and others in every other episode on TOS.
*IF* this rumor is somehow even remotely true, or still being considered, then it’s the kind of dumb, unnecessary, maddening sexual orientation change to an established character we recognize not as LBGQT+ support, but classic story change for the case of social justice. Somebody stop the madness.
I’m strongly opposed to changing the sexual orientation of established characters simply because it’s the future and now more socially acceptable for such a thing in 2020 than it was in 1966. If you’re going to tell me Kirk was bisexual all along, that’s an extremely tough sell. Give me some empirical evidence using the TV show episodes.
Disclaimer: I am definitely in favor of LBGQT+ characters, as long as they are new characters or ones that logically come out as part of their character arcs. James T. Kirk has been openly heterosexual for some 60 years. When was his character ever into guys? I mean, even a little into guys? Sulu had his shirt off in some episodes, did I miss Kirk getting turned on? Casting longing gazes? Some sort of clue somewhere, anywhere?
CBS, please, let’s not rewrite characters that are gay as straight, or straight as gay, or either ones as bi — unless it is a natural part of the storyline. Let’s keep characters sexual orientations consistent with history.
Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn are bisexual. Love those characters and I celebrate their bisexuality. I’m cool with Sulu, played by the legendary George Takei who is openly gay, being gay in Star Trek, too (he was in JJ Abrams reboot of Star Trek). But Captain Kirk? Come on, no.
If some are contemplating this move at CBS, please assign them to a different project post haste. They have no business writing about established Star Trek characters.
The Comic-Con@Home version is now playing (July 22 – July 26) and yesterday there was a virtual Star Trek panel where more was revealed about the upcoming Star Trek: Lower Decks (FIRST LOOK) adult animated series coming August 6.
All of the main voice actors and actresses are included. An enjoyable group discussion listening to their take on each of their character’s roles on the Ceritos. Was also glad to hear from the showrunner Mike McMahan (Rick & Morty) that while there is a lot of zany fun planned in the first season, they tried to stick close to cannon of the time period around when Star Trek: Next Generation.
They bleeped and SPOILER title tagged it, so they give enough away to tease, but don’t spoil, which I enjoyed.
A clip of one of the lower decks crew mates drunk on Romulian whiskey was also shared.
I thought this clip was humorous. It’s the kind of comedy that pokes fun from the inside out. Klingons? Yeah, they are all about honor and dignity. Next Gen would poke fun at Worf from time to time, but this takes it to a different level. I liked it.
From what the voice talent revealed, this show sounds very promising to me. Without seeing any of the episodes, I’m most drawn to Jerry O’Connell’s character Ransom and the overzealous security officer, Lieutenant Shaxs (Fred Tatasciore) that just goes all in (something about a security officer that wants to go nuclear on every situation offers a ton of comedic potential). I also liked the voice of the security character. Reminds me of Rip Torn’s voice on steroids.
Am more looking forward to this then Picard before seeing any episodes, because my fear of Picard beforehand was he was too old and they weren’t going to be Star Trek enough.
Neither appears to be a problem here. They are taking the light — sometimes very light — tone of the Star Trek we know and love and amplifying it.
There is a vibrance and youthful aura around this show. Will it deliver or be too much for mass appeal (after seeing Harley Quinn, I hope they go into super “too much” mode here)? I don’t know how this will turn out, but am intrigued by the idea and concept and, as mentioned in the FIRST LOOK last week that from what little I’ve watched of Rick & Morty so far, I’ve enjoyed that series, too. Mike McMahon seems to have the right mix of enthusiasm, love and respect for the older Trek. McMahon admits being more in tune with Next Gen than any other series, but I’m OK with that. I liked Next Gen. Not as much as the original series, of course, but it’s a solid second place in my Trek ranking.
The one area that concerns me is that nobody else wanted to buy into this series. It’s strictly CBS going it alone. Amazon and Netflix passed from what I’ve read. If they saw the show and it was great, logic suggests they would have bought in.
Then again, maybe the price tag was higher than they thought it was worth? Amazon and Netflix know the numbers for Star Trek streaming on their platforms — since they’ve been streaming those shows for years — and maybe they didn’t think Lower Decks would bring enough new eyeballs? Either that or the potential controversy with Trek fans concerned them (doubtful Netflix would be concerned about that with shows like 365 DNI, but Amazon might be a little more concerned about negative publicity fallout).
Whatever happens, we don’t have much longer to wait. I’m stoked, anyway. I want to review the first season, but am going to wait until after watching the entire first episode before making the weekly commitment (sorry, the Picard stain is still fresh in my memory). The timing of Lower Decks starting is excellent because Stargirl is wrapping up its first season on August 10 and I am missing watching a new adult animated TV show since Harley ended (Rick & Morty is always there, though).
What are you thinking? Does this additional teaser/promotional content make you any more or less interested in the show? Now that we know a little more, has any of this changed your level of interest?
Bonus – Star Trek: Prodigy
There is a main title reveal of the Star Trek animated children’s show in association with Nickolodean that will be officially called Star Trek: Prodigy. No trailers or anything for that. It sounds from what little we’ve been told about this series that it’s going to be more serious in tone, but of course focused on children. Will it be more like the original animated series? Perhaps.
Star Trek: The Lower Decks season 1 first episode will premiere on CBS All Access on August 6, 2020.
Am not a fan of what Alex Kurtzman has done with Star Trek so far. Discovery? Watched a few episodes and it didn’t connect. Picard? Bailed after the first seven episodes in disgust. Lower Decks? This appears to be his best chance of interesting me in one of his Star Trek related project, but I was interested in Picard at first.
Lower Decks will be available on CBS All Access Thursday August 6, 2020. This will keep me subscribed. I might rewatch the classic animated Star Trek this next month, because I remember that series fondly.
But back to the “what have you done for Star Trek lately” team.
J.J Abrams hasn’t done much better with Star Trek. I found the reboot entertaining and when I get around to rewatching and reviewing, it will probably be recommended (but no guarantees on that).
So, if someone else was going to be brought in as a future showrunner — and this is pure speculation by the writer below, as far as I know — who can take reins of Star Trek?
Red shirt is making an intriguing recommendation: Jonathan Frakes, Number One. Second in command aboard the Enterprise in The Next Generation and has directed both Star Trek TV episodes and films.
Frakes is the man to lay the Trek franchise onto. He understands the universe, the characters, the way to make the shows, and to frame the conversations. He wouldn’t just shoehorn ideas into the series, or makeup reasons to slam nostalgia down the fans throats. He knows fans want new stories, new adventures, and new characters.
I like this idea. No clue if CBS would consider making Frakes a showrunner, but the article writer isn’t wrong: he couldn’t do much worse than Akiva Goldsmith. That guy is 0 for 2 with me, but if he hits it out of the park with Lower Decks, he’s batting a cool .333. That’s a good batting average.
What do you think of the idea of Jonathon Frakes as a Star Trek showrunner? Would he do better than the current team? Worse? About the same?
No. That’s the answer to the headline. Louder, no.
There are plenty of great stories in the Star Trek universe that can be told on streaming, in movies, books and more. The galaxy is massive and dare I suggest provides nearly limitless creative potential.
We might disagree on the most recent two Trek ventures (Discovery and Picard), but to suggest any one bad movie, TV show, book, story, etc can ruin the future story potential is silly.
(would say the same thing about the Terminator franchise, btw)
Some of the 10 ideas suggested in the linked article quoted above I really liked. The Galactic Core and Holodeck ideas stood out. I’m the type of creative person who looks at this well of creative goodness and sees immense opportunity.
My Twilight Zone TV Series Pitch
I can’t recall ever writing any fan fiction, but the closest I could see myself writing would be some kind of Twilight Zone stories. The coolest thing I’d like to see are an extension — not a reboot — of the original Twilight Zone episodes: filmed in black and white, shadows, substance, same stock Bernard Hermann music, 22-25 minute run time, and a narrator Serling clone who wears the black suit and has the wry Serling expression and cigarette dangling. Heck, even get sponsors that still exist and have retro commercials. So many opportunities with this pitch. If anybody from CBS is reading this, contact me, because, yes, I do have several script ideas. Again, this isn’t a reboot idea, this is a continuation of 1959-1963 in present day. Sacred ground, yes, I know, but if it’s a project done with admiration and love it could be pulled off and amazing. Would you dig seeing a Season 6 of the original series?
Am sure there are fans of Star Trek with ideas they can pitch that are as good as or better than what’s presented in the quote above — or my Star Trek: Next Generation Titan idea. There are also boatloads of books in the Star Trek universe that could be adapted. Picard won’t be the least Star Trek TV series.
Do you have any Star Trek (or other shows they own the IP) pitches for CBS All Access? Go ahead, pitch in the comments. Never know who’s reading!