As the ‘Star Trek’ franchise continues to grow, now in its fiftieth year, the ideas for and types of stories and settings grow more and more diverse. We’ve seen Trek series set in eras across hundreds of years (including individual episodes spanning thousands of years in the future or the past), and even a trio of films set completely in an “alternate universe” parallel to the original. It should come as no surprise, then, that all the iterations likely won’t please all the people all the time.
One of the most historically outspoken Star Trek actors of all time, George Takei, recently spoke with IGN and shared his unabashed opinions on which parts of the overall franchise he has enjoyed the least. First up was the new trio of films helmed by JJ Abrams and company, set in the rebooted “Abramsverse” that follows an alternate timeline of the “classic Trek” characters. Here’s what he thinks:
“The rebooted ones are missing that magic ingredient that makes a Gene Rodenberry Star Trek so unique and singular. He used science fiction as a metaphor for issues of the time. We were on during the sixties and in the sixties it was a turbulent time. In the united states, we had the civil rights movement. We also had the Vietnam war going on and globally we had the cold war going, two great powers threatening each other with mutual nuclear annihilation, and that was being depicted metaphorically in science fiction. The rebooted version is a rip-roaring good space opera. Lots of photon battles, lots of hanging on alien planet cliffs, but that’s it, it’s action adventure. That additional element is not there.”
Next up in his sights was ‘Star Trek: The Animated Series,’ the short-lived mid-1970s outing that Takei was actually a part of (after Leonard Nimoy went to bat for him – check out our recent Throwback Thursday on ‘The Animated Series’ for more trivia and minutiae):
“You know, the animated version is really not one of my favorites. I thought when we began the animated series would have a wonderful opportunity to really explore science fiction. You know because in the film versions were limited by anthropomorphic alien beings. Two arms, two eyes, you know, because they are played by actors, but this time with the animated version we can have really exotic aliens. Totally different kind of life forms with intelligence that we either make friends with or learn from or you know maybe just to raise a plight or really undeveloped forms of life that’s rocky and yet still has some kind of intelligence. You know that could be done with an animated version or alien civilizations that could not be created on a soundstage. Fantastical floating cities, but none of that was explored. The aliens again happened to be two arms, two legs, two eyes. Sometimes they had four or eight eyes, but it was limited, so I don’t think that the animated, we really reached its true animation potential.”
What are your thoughts, Trek fans? Is Takei correct in his comments, or do you feel differently? Sound off below and let us know!
Tony Schaab firmly believes that a viewing of ‘Scott Pilgrim vs. the World’ should be a mandatory bi-weekly experience and that a re-read-through of the original 7 manga volumes of the story should occupy every off week. A lover of most things sci-fi and horror, Tony is an author by day and a DJ by night. Come hang out with Tony on Facebook and Twitter to hear him spew semi-funny nonsense and get your opportunity to finally put him in his place.