A Brave New Adventure

Star Trek Discovery Premiere Eve Banner

We’ve been a little quiet here at Star Trek: Sentinel because there has been so much Star Trek: Discovery news coming out that we kind of just wanted to enjoy it and let it wash over us, and didn’t feel the need to comment on it.

Now we stand on the eve of the launch of a brand new series and a bold new experiment in Star Trek.

Since the new series was first announced and up until today, we’ve all seen people expressing hope and excitement for the show and people nit-picking everything and heaping disdain on this new series every Trek fan should be looking forward to.

Georgiou and Burnham

It’s probably no secret that I am incredibly excited about the show.  I love Sonequa Martin-Green as an actor, I’m a huge fan of Kirsten Beyer, Akiva Goldsman and many other behind the scenes creatives, and I admire the risks everyone has taken to make this version of Star Trek relevant.

I’ve been disappointed, even upset by some of the negative coverage coming from some sites.  The amount of it coming from one particular sci-fi site (not a Trek one) has caused me to delete it from my favourites and move on.

Now that we’re literally only hours away from the first brand new episode of Star Trek television in 12 years, I thought it might be a good idea to point you guys toward a handful of excellent articles out there right now on websites staffed by professionals who are genuinely excited to see Star Trek: Discovery.

There are two sites in particular that have had extensive and exceptional coverage over these last few weeks:

TrekMovie and TrekCore.

TrekMovie, in particular has suddenly become one of the best, if not the best, Trek site ever.  Their coverage of Star Trek: Discovery has been spectacular.

TrekCore have always been amazing, and though they may be following a close second behind TrekMovie, their coverage has still been excellent.

Inside the Discovery

Here are some great articles from both sites.

Let’s start with the coverage of the recent Premiere, held a couple of days ago in Los Angeles – attended by many of the cast and crew of Star Trek: Discovery, and Star Trek royalty, Nichelle Nichols and William Shatner.

Nichelle, Sonequa and Bill

Sonequa and the cast get a blessing from one of the most significant women in modern science fiction, Nichelle Nichols.

TrekMovie gives us some photos from the Hollywood Premiere.

TrekCore‘s coverage of the Premiere.

For more on the “blue carpet” premiere event, visit both TrekMovie and TrekCore and look through their most recent articles.

Of particular interest to fans, the Season One Press Kit for Star Trek: Discovery has finally been released.

It’s beautiful.  The images above, and one a little earlier on in this article are from that kit.

TrekCore got the scoop on this one, so go check out their article focusing on the kit here.

Some of the things we’ve learned over the last few weeks are that the Klingon War with the Federation will play a major part in Season One of Star Trek: Discovery.

We’ve also learned that the war story will be wrapped up by the end of the 15 episode first season arc.

We don’t know what Season Two might hold, but it’s interesting that the Klingon conflict will fade out to be replaced by something else.

I think that’s a good idea.  Multiple years focusing on a war might get a bit a much – plus, there’s a lot more to Star Trek than Klingons and the war-arc has already been done and done well in Trek’s illustrious history.

Star Trek Discovery EW Photoshoot 1

If you want to catch up with all of the Star Trek: Discovery news, visit those two wonderful sites.

Right now, I am eagerly counting down the hours to Star Trek: Discovery‘s release on Netflix.

If I could have one wish over these next few days, it would be for my fellow Trek fans to give this show a chance.

A great deal of incredible talent has been brought together to bring this show to us, and a lot of love and care has gone into it.  Yes, it looks different to Star Trek: The Original Series and probably shares more in common with Star Trek: Enterprise and the J.J. Abrams Trek movies, but that’s superficial and necessary if we want to attract new viewers and keep Stat Trek alive.  The show and it’s producers are doing everything they can to be faithful to canon and to make us something we will love.

The internet has become an horrifically nasty place where people seem to think it’s acceptable, even ‘cool’ and funny, to be negative and sometimes even abusive, but Star Trek fans are better than that, and the worst of us are nothing more than a vocal minority.

I hope other fans who love all things Trek for everything that the shows stand for, and respect and attempt to live the ideals of Star Trek, embrace this new show and love it and ensure it continues for many years to come.

We’ll be back in a couple of days with a review of the pilot episode, which is titled “The Vulcan Hello.”

Until then, may we all and may Star Trek: Discovery especially, live long and prosper.

In the United States, Star Trek: Discovery premieres on CBS on the 24th of September with all subsequent episodes airing on CBS All Access.  In Canada Star Trek: Discovery will premiere on the 24th of September also, on Bell Media’s CTV and the Space Channel.  For the rest of us, Star Trek: Discovery will launch on Netflix on Monday the 25th of September.

LCARS Interface

To Kirk or Not To Kirk

Captain Kirk 1

Throughout 2014 and 2015 there was one rumour that would not go away… William Shatner would be returning to Trek as his alterego, the prime Trek universe’s Captain James T. Kirk in Star Trek Beyond.

It would have been a wonderful way to celebrate Trek’s golden anniversary.

The Shat himself has set us straight in an interview coming out in SFX Magazine later this week.

Captain Kirk 2

According to The Shat, no one had a conversation with him about appearing in the movie, despite the fan love for the idea, and despite the fact the movie was being released in the 50th Anniversary year of Star Trek.

Perhaps, back when Roberto Orci was helming Trek III, there were plans for Shatner to make an appearance, but as we all know by now everything he and his writing partners developed was dumped in favour of the Pegg and Jung script.

To read the TrekCore post and get a little more information on William Shatner’s take on the rumours, jump on over to the article here.

LCARS Interface

TOS Audience Weren’t Ready for a Gay Character

George Takei Banner

Internet and Star Trek icon, George Takei, has recently discussed Gene Roddenberry and Star Trek, and an issue close to his heart, explaining why there was never an openly gay character on the original Enterprise.

George appeared in a Big Think video where he discussed his time on the original series, including telling the world how Gene Roddenberry came up with the name ‘Sulu’.

Among the stories George shares is one about Gene’s reasoning for nixing any story lines that featured homosexuality.  He begins by talking about how the ratings fell for the first run of the episode ‘Plato’s Stepchildren’ when it aired back in November 1968, and that it gave Gene a nasty reality check.  For those of you who have been living in an alternate dimension, ‘Plato’s Stepchildren’ is the episode where Nichelle Nichols and William Shatner shared the first televised interracial kiss.  It was the reaction to that historic television moment that slapped Gene in the face and made him realise he had to be a little more careful.

Kirk and Uhura Kiss

Television stations in Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, and Georgia refused to air the episode and apparently the south went up in arms.

When that happened, Gene remarked “I’m treading a fine tight wire here. I’m dealing with issues of the time. I’m dealing with the civil rights movement, the Vietnam War, the Cold War, and I need to be able to make that statement by staying on the air. If I dealt with that issue (homosexuality) I wouldn’t be able to deal with any issue because I would be canceled.”

George goes on to say that Gene did try incredibly hard to make the starship Enterprise a ‘starship Earth’, but had to balance the reality of the times with his desire to break new ground and push a humanist, inclusive vision of the future.

If you’d like to read more, I found the article on jezebel.com (awesome site).  You can skip over to their website and have a wander about, or if you just want to read the article and see the video right away click here.

George Takei

LCARS Interface

The Shat Speaks

Star Trek Created by Gene Roddenberry

William Shatner, aka The Shat, is possibly one of the most contentious figures in Trek Lore.

He’s charming, irascible, controversial, insightful, egotistical and laugh-out-loud hilarious.  In one moment he can be self-deprecating, and in the next self-promoting.

Captain James T. Kirk

And I love the crap out of him.

But I never used to.  I didn’t like James T. Kirk as a character, and didn’t give any thought to William Shatner the actor until I watched the oft-debated Star Trek V: The Final Frontier.  I know most fans don’t like that film, but I do. In fact, in the last decade I’ve re-watched it more than any other TOS film.  Yep, some of the effects suck, and Sybok… WTF?!  But Kirk’s speech about needing his pain struck a cord in me and it shifted my perception of the character – and then I started to pay attention to the actor, in time for the wonderful Boston Legal.

As a person, you either love him or hate him.  As an actor he’s both adored and mimicked, and even now and again ridiculed.  As a director, he didn’t really get a chance to shine.  There are some shots in ‘The Final Frontier’ that, as a film and TV major and a working actor and director, I just love.  Bill has a wonderful eye.  When you step back, you can get a feel for what he was trying to achieve, and you can see that he genuinely tried to honour each of the classic seven.  It’s unfortunate that he was never allowed to fulfill his vision with Trek-V.  I would have loved to have seen him get another shot at the directorial-centre-seat.

The Shat recently answered a bunch of questions via Twitter, and a new Trek news site I stumbled across a couple of months ago has all the news… including something I don’t think I’ve ever heard before, beyond the usual rumours – he was approached to play Captain Kirk on TNG.

The new site (old to some of you no doubt) is TrekNews and the article can be found here.

Go check it out, and take a swim through their site.  It’s pretty damn good.

LCARS Interface