Wednesday, January 21, 2009

To Boldly Go

I'm following Wil Wheaton, LeVar Burton, and Brent Spiner on Twitter. Although I associate all of them with their other projects, together they have sent me on a Trekkie trip down memory lane.

I was first introduced to the world of Star Trek when I was 5 yrs old. (It may have been earlier than that, but I have no recollection of it.) Sundays were the one day of the week that I got to spend time with my dad - and that time was spent watching TOS and Dr Who. TOS of course was well before my time, but my dad had grown up with it and was a big fan, so he enjoyed watching the episodes, and I just enjoyed the time with him. I suspect I drove him a little crazy with questions about this world of science fiction that I was being introduced to.

I don't remember exactly when my dad and I started watching TNG. It may have been in 1987, but again, I have no recollection of it. Star Trek just became part of my life. It was fascinating to me, and inspiring. I wanted nothing more than to go out and explore the stars. Unlike most Trekkies, my favorite TNG character was actually Wesley Crusher. Even as a kid I understood the difficulties with the character, and why it was not a popular one (my dad always had a few choice words when Wesley was in an episode,) but for me Wesley was proof that kids could be in space. I wanted to be brilliant like him, and skip the whole growing up thing and just head straight into space. Obviously the whims and fantasies of a child. It didn't hurt that Wil Wheaton is just damn good looking too ;)

I remember how thrilled I was when Voyager and DS9 came out. By then I was a larger Star Trek fan than my dad, and followed the shows much more religiously. (Side note: my dad finally found a character he despised more than Wesley Crusher: Kathryn Janeway.) I find the divergence in fan opinion regarding Voyager and DS9 to be very interesting. Most who liked Voyager hated DS9, and vice versa. I liked both. However, TNG reigned supreme in my world of Star Trek.

I had a few Trek figurines and other objects you would expect a Trekkie to have, but my siblings teased me mercilessly about my Star Trek affinity, so I would avoid visible representations of my Trekkie nature. It didn't, however, stop me from stockpiling some really awesome posters, one of which I still have up in my room.

When Voyager and DS9 came to an end and I heard about Enterprise, I was thrilled. I cleared my schedule specifically so I could watch the premiere - only to be pissed about the theme music! This isn't the classic Trek theme! (Side note: over time I became used to the theme, and was pissed all over again when they shortened it.) I liked the show well enough to keep watching it, but I was a little dubious. Season 2 was the start of something great. Enterprise was brilliant, and fast becoming my favorite Trek series.

You can imagine my fury when the show was canceled.

I knew, after watching the last episode of Enterprise, that the Star Trek franchise was done. Sure there would still be conventions, books, and maybe even some more movies, but without the TV shows I couldn't see it having the power and effect on the masses that it once had. It was a sad, sad day for me.

On a happier note, I finally made it to Vegas and the Star Trek Experience, before it shut down. It was a big moment for me...not just because the Star Trek Experience was Trekkie heaven, but also because after years of publicly denying and hiding being a Trek fan, I was not afraid or ashamed of saying I LOVE STAR TREK!

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