Why Does Star Trek Appeals to So Many?

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Why, almost 50 years after it first came on TV, does Star Trek refuse to be gone? I think that a huge part of the continuous appeal can be found in our many real and current problems, both monetary and environmental.

Star Trek, dissimilar to current science fiction, is grounded in a hopeful view of the future, one where the infinite possibilities of existence reside. A future in which science and reason will prevail over superstition. A future where technology could be built to address any challenge.

Many aspects of this vision were, and still are, extremely unrealistic. It was interesting that everyone on board the Starship was proficient to do complex quantum theory calculations when needed and engineers could resolve any technological problem in less than 60 minutes.

In the real world, former President Obama spoke out about the need to base decision-making on concrete science and acknowledge the real need to use scientific and engineering to address the serious environmental and energy challenges facing us.

For the first time in human history, we face Star Trek-like issues, like global warming to declining energy resources. Will we have the intelligence to move toward a Star Trek future, where we all join to accomplish a common goal while keeping respect for individual cultures? Will humans ultimately reject the religious myths that separate us and get in the way, truthfully addressing the world around us?

I don’t mean to imply that Star Trek shows a world free of conflict and emotions. After all, it is the conflict between Kirk and Spock over what is logical versus what is right that moves much of the action. But Star Trek eventually presents a world in which human emotions and reason can peacefully live together. We could learn a lot about how to function in this world together by watching how Capt. Kirk and his crew function in their make-believe “world.”

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The Most Powerful Star Trek Villians (Part II)

Picking up where we left off in Part I:

Tholians

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Only their desire to bring isolation stop the Tholians from being one of the greatest threats in the galaxy. This extremely advanced race of crystalized space-spiders has accomplished notoriety thanks to their amazing battle weapon, the Tholian Web. Scheming and territorial, the Tholians have gone into nearby systems and defeated the lifeforms within. They have exceptional technology and tactics to get rid of potential threats, though they seem more into making their own “safe space” than having intergalactic domination.

 

 

Talosians

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Starfleet thought the Talosian race was such a threat to humans that it declared their whole world off-limits. Those who disregarded the warning and made contact with the planet Talos IV were endanger of the death penalty.

This race of dome-headed villains have tremendous psychic powers and are famous for trapping their victims in fantasy hallucinations.

 

 

The Jem’Hadar

These rhino-faced warriors are the only race able of making Klingons look like super models. Used as shock troops by the Dominion, the Jem’Hadar are genetically engineered to deliver death and destruction wherever they go. They depend on the highly-addictive drug Ketracel to stimulate their murderous ways and live by a simple saying: “Victory is Life.” Jem’Hadar soldiers are way stronger than an average human and can activate an active camouflage-type cloak, making them invisible to the naked eye.

The Xindi

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The Xindi’s attack on Earth was brought on by false intelligence (given by the sphere-builders), though that doesn’t free them of blame. Cruel in their attempts to eliminate humanity, the Xindi were even willing to go back in time and use potent bio-weapons. If the joined forces of good hadn’t been incredible detectives with good timing, Earth could have been wiped out numerous times across numerous timelines.

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The Most Powerful Star Trek Villains (Part I)

At its best, Star Trek is a science fiction show regarding humanity’s capability to develop its horizons and overcome differences. But all that would be quite boring without some good villains to destroy. Trek’s bad guys have been a various bag, varying from the laughable to real terrifying, like The Borg.

The Gorn

We would probably find ourselves having to be in the witness protection program if the Gorn wasn’t on this list. While many Star Trek villains are serious masterminds hell-bent on overpowering the known galaxy, the Gorn are the exact opposite. These angry lizard-men have lived in infamy since showing up in 1967. The most drawn-out antagonist ever created, the Gorn wear amazing space-foil vests and haven’t blinked in almost 50 years.

 

General Chang

Anyone who wears an eye-patch is suspect. Anyone who sports an eye-patch that is

General Chang (portrayed by actor Christopher Plummer)

screwed into their face shouldn’t ever be trusted under no circumstances. Slippery and scheming, Chang serves as a good foil to the Gorn in the context of this list. Where the Gorn are all about raw power and aggression, Chang is highly intelligent and manipulative. That’s the attractiveness of Klingon General Chang. He understands the only way to kill the Federation-Klingon truce is from the inside out and isn’t afraid to do a little thing like murder to get the ball rolling.

Q

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Arguably the most powerful and crazy being in the entire Star Trek universe, Q is a time-traveling, dimension-skipping, immortal/amoral pain in the ass. He’s a member of the omnipotent and god-like species, also known as The Q, who live on the Q Continuum. Q never really lived up to his full villainous potential. He showed up periodically to mess with Picard & Co. and show them all how powerful he can be if he really wanted to.

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Facts About the Starship Enterprise

Space, the final frontier. These are the voyages of the Starship Enterprise, the coolest flying thingy to ever go through the galaxy.

It Can Break in Two, In Case of Emergency

One of the lesser-known abilities of the Enterprise is its capability to, in a dire situation, jettison the back half of the ship. Referred to as a “saucer separation,” it was thought of as a last-minute move on constitution-class ships to get away from unwanted orbit and secure the crew. Thus, without its warp nacelles, the Enterprise can only travel at small speed, which isn’t that fast at all. It’s just about ¼ the speed of light.

Weaponry

The Enterprise was created to be an exploration vessel, constructed for years in deep space. While it’s more than able of battling when the need arose, it’s obviously not a warship. Enterprise was kept with numerous photon torpedo launchers and a whole lot of phaser banks. In the episode, “A Piece of the Action,” Enterprise’s phasers are fixed to stun and rapidly knock out a whole city block. In fact, a fully charged phaser could destroy an entire planet.

It Became a Training Ship

At the outset of The Wrath of Khan, Enterprise is out of active service, being a training vessel for new recruits. Despite its varied improvements, Starfleet is focused on bigger and better things and the old constitution-class Starship just can’t keep up. Like his old ship, Kirk himself felt obsolete, manning a desk rather than a space cruiser, biding time until his middle-age grows into old age. Eventually, an old nemesis shows up to disrupt Kirk’s would-be retirement, leaving Kirk and his ship no alternative but to try and halt death once more, although this time it’s a bigger cost than Kirk ever wanted or was willing to pay.

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Leadership Skills Courtesy of Captain Kirk

Captain James T. Kirk is one of the most well-known captains in the history of Starfleet and there’s a solid reason for that. He saved Earth numerous times, ended the Doomsday Machine, assisted in making peace with the Klingon Empire, keeping the balance of power between the Federation and the Romulan Empire, and even fought the Nazis. On his five-year quest heading the U.S.S. Enterprise and other commands, Captain Kirk was an exemplary leader who led his crew into the unknown and was successful over and over again.

Never Stop Learning

You know the greatest danger facing us is ourselves, an irrational fear of the unknown. But there isn’t any unknown. There’s only what is hidden and not known (paraphrase).

Captain Kirk may have a standing as a smooth ladies’ man, but don’t let that exterior coolness fool you. Kirk’s reputation at the Academy was that of being a “walking stack of books,” in the words of his previous first officer, Gary Mitchell. This passion for learning aided him through numerous missions.

Have Advisors with Different Worldviews

One of the advantages of being a captain is being able to get advice and not having to take it (paraphrase).

Kirk’s closest two advisors were Commander Spock, a Vulcan devoted to a philosophy of logic, and Dr. McCoy, a human guided by empathy and scientific curiosity. Both Spock and McCoy are often at odds with each other, suggesting different courses of action and giving very different types of arguments to defend their point of view. Kirk occasionally goes with one, or the other, or takes their advice as a springboard to forming a whole different course of action.

Organizations that permit for differences of opinion are better at creating innovation, better at resolving problems, and better at avoiding groupthinking. We all need a McCoy and a Spock in our lives and organizations, as well as a Captain Kirk to lead us.

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To Spock, With Love

Let’s be honest: without Spock, there would be no “Star Trek.” The Star Trek’s part-Vulcan officer constantly fascinated audiences with his intelligence and logic while understanding precisely how to keep Captain Kirk in check.

Spock’s mother, Amanda Grayson, was a human who was a teacher and his father, Sarek, was a valued diplomat. Spock warred with his human and Vulcan half until his involvement with the V’Ger machine-entity in 2271, his death, and rebirth in 2286 widened his outlook. In 2267, he received the Vulcanian Scientific Legion of Honor and had been honored two times by Starfleet Command.

When he was a child, Spock owned a pet sehlat, a cuddly Vulcan bear-like animal having claws and fangs. His older half-brother, Sybok, who was banned from Vulcan because he abandoned the way of pure logic, died in 2292 after fighting an alien entity at the galaxy’s center that proclaimed to be ‘God.’

At age 7, Spock was telepathically connected with a young Vulcan girl named T’Pring. The telepathic touch would bring the two together when the time was correct after both came of age. Once every seven years, all Vulcan male experiences pon farr, which is a strong Vulcan mating drive which mandates that they mate or die. In 2267, however, T’Pring picked Stonn (a Vulcan) over Spock, and the Vulcan went back to the U.S.S. Enterprise unwed. Spock did eventually marry in a ceremony attended by Lt. Picard.

Because the Spock joined the Starfleet, he and Sarek had an 18-year rift over Sarek’s hope his son would go to the Vulcan Science Academy. Spock was the 1st Vulcan to sign on with the USS Enterprise, working alongside Captain Pike as a lieutenant and then Captain Kirk.

Spock had a lifelong interest in art, music, literature, and poetry from many worlds.

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Fun Facts About Uhura

Uhura was a Starfleet officer in the 23rd century. A human, she functioned as a communications officer on the USS Enterprise and USS Enterprise-A under the command of Captain James T. Kirk. (She can be seen in The Original Series The Enterprise, and The Voyage Home).

Childhood

Uhura was of African descent. She was fluent in Swahili and had a knack for mathematics. She did the 100-meter dash in record time. (See it in the following episodes: The Man Trap, The Changeling, Spectre of the Gun, The Savage Curtain; TAS: The Slaver Weapon.

Uhura started her Starfleet career in 2265. In 2266, Lieutenant Uhura was a command division officer aboard the USS Enterprise. She was the person in charge of the communications department.

Later that year, Uhura was moved to the operations division. In the years of being a part of the USS Enterprise’s historic five-year mission, she was a proficient technician and was considered by Captain Kirk to be a dependable bridge officer and main science station when the need came up.

On Stardate 1672.1, before taking a small on-board ship sabbatical, Uhura’s voice was heard ship-wide prompting her fellow crew members to correctly file their “time sheets via the communications department.” (You can hear this in the episode The Enemy Within).

On Stardate 1709.1, Uhura again handled the navigation post when Lieutenant Stiles was required to be somewhere else on the ship during the clash with the Romulans around the neutral zone.

In 2267, Uhura was a part of the landing party that beamed down to the Guardian of Forever planet to look for Dr. Leonard McCoy, who was in a confused state of mind because of an accidental overdose of cordrazine. Uhura was the first one in the landing party to see that the group had lost contact with the Enterprise.

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Star Trek Season 2 DVD Review

Leonard Nimoy & William Shatner: 1968

The Star Trek (Season 2) DVD has plenty of action-packed episodes, like the first episode called “Amok Time” where Spock starts to showcase weird and illogical characteristics. Worried, Capt. Kirk demands a full medical exam and finds out that Spock is having the primitive mating patterns of a Vulcan and must go to his home planet quickly in order to avoid dying. When they arrive, Spock’s chosen mate defies the pairing, causing a duel between Spock and the man of her selecting. Kirk is chosen and this force him and Spock to fight to the death. Other noteworthy episodes from Season 2 are “Metamorphosis,” where the Enterprise comes across a secretive force known as The Companion which is in love with a human and “Patterns of Force,” where the Enterprise crew visits a planet that looks a lot like the world of 20th Century Nazi Germany.

Here is a list of episodes included on DVD Star Trek-Season 2:

Episode 30 (Amok Time)
Episode 31 (Who Mourns for Adonais?)
Episode 32 (The Changeling)
Episode 33 (Mirror, Mirror)
Episode 34 (The Apple)

Episode 35 (The Doomsday Machine)
Episode 36 (Catspaw)
Episode 37 (I, Mudd)

Episode 38 (Metamorphosis)

Episode 39 (Journey to Babel)

Episode 40 (Friday’s Child)

Episode 41 (The Deadly Years)
Episode 42 (Obsession)
Episode 43 (Wolf in the Fold)
Episode 44 (The Trouble with Tribbles)
Episode 45 (The Gamesters of Triskelion)
Episode 46 (A Piece of the Action)
Episode 47 (The Immunity Syndrome)
Episode 48 (A Private Little War)
Episode 49 (Return to Tomorrow)
Episode 50 (Patterns of Force)
Episode 51 (By Any Other Name)
Episode 52 (The Omega Glory)
Episode 53 (The Ultimate Computer)
Episode 54 (Bread and Circuses)
Episode 55 (Assignment: Earth)

If you don’t have a DVD player, you can go to some places online, such as iTunes, Hulu, or Amazon, and purchase it there.

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Star Trek: The Next Generation Review

Star Trek: The Next Generation is in the 24th Century, close to 100 years after Captain Kirk’s crew set out to discover strange new worlds. Capt. Jean-Luc Picard, played amazingly by Patrick Stewart, heads the   USS Enterprise-D and its varied crew of humans, cyborgs, and assorted life forms. Going with him on his voyage is a whole new cast of passengers and crew.

Together, they work against many obstacles to carry out the mission of the USS Enterprise: to boldly go where no man has gone before. This groundbreaking attitude, combined with inventive and vividly created alien worlds, gives Star Trek, with its exceptional allure, a distinct place within American pop culture, especially those episodes from the original series, highly thought of as the most popular of the Star Trek franchise.

The Star Trek: The Next Generation DVD contains a number of thrilling episodes including the first episode, “Encounter at Farpoint,” in which the brand-new USS Enterprise-D has its first mission: to explore the area in and around Farpoint Station. However, while carrying out their mission, the crew and passengers come across a powerful life form referred to only as “Q”. The being blames the human race of extreme crimes against the galaxy, and he makes threat to destroy all of humanity. Capt. Picard and his crew must think quickly or face total annihilation.

Other significant episodes from Season 1 are: “The Battle” in which a mind-control device placed on a previous ship of Capt. Picard makes him act out a battle from his past…and the USS Enterprise is the target. “Coming of Age” where the character of Wesley (played by Wil Wheaton) takes the Starfleet Academy entrance exam and Capt. Picard rejects a promotion so he can stay with the Enterprise. Hundreds of Star Trek fans have stated that The Star Trek: The Next Generation is the best series in the franchise.

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Star Trek: Voyager Review

The 3rd sequel from the original Star Trek series, Star Trek: Voyager, was first aired in 1995 to low critical acclaim, but had good success with TV viewers, slowly improving its ratings as the show progressed. Right behind Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, the show was before Star Trek: Enterprise while having an all-star cast, including Kate Mulgrew, Jeri Ryan, and Roxann Dawson. The difference with this series was instead of following the traditional Star Trek quest to “boldly go where no one has gone before,” Star Trek: Voyager was more into going where the crew had already been before…

Star Trek: Voyager tells the exploits of the crew on the starship USS Voyager. As the show starts, the Voyager is on a mission to capture a rogue ship of Maquis mutineers, a race of people who were first presented in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. While pursuing the Maquis, the Voyager come into a system called the badlands, and both ships are promptly transported to the Delta Quadrant more than seventy-thousand light years away on the outer edge of the galaxy. Quickly, the Maquis and the Voyager crew learn they were transported to Delta Quadrant by the Caretaker, a shadowy force supervising the safety of the Ocampan race who live in the shadow on a looming threat from the spiteful Kazon.

When the Kazon destroys the Maquis ship, the Voyager crew join forces with the Maquis crew to save themselves from the Kazon. Having damaged the device which could bring them home, the crew of the Voyager, headed by Capt. Janeway and the team of the Maquis starship, headed by Commander Chakotay (Beltran), must join together and form a united front in order to resolve their common goal of finding a way home.

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