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Now With 40 Percent More Whoosh

What Gene Roddenberry wanted most of all was to remaster Star Trek TNG for Blu-Ray and add better special effects. Who knew?

Ok, he might have liked the new special effects, unless he hated them, mostly he would have understood the business side of keeping up sales for the old series, selling people who have them on DVD or VHS, the new Blu Rays, and getting a generation that’s used to better quality effects to buy this stuff.

But somehow I don’t think Roddenberry’s first reaction to a world with no Star Trek series on the air, because the TV exec who replaced him had trashed the franchise in three increasingly unpopular series, and a Star Trek movie that senselessly trashes his universe, would be to admire the improved renderings of the creatures in “Encounter at Farpoint.”

To give credit where credit is due, the whole campaign has been nice and the theater releases will be the closest thing to something that feels like a Star Trek movie that there has been since The Undiscovered Country. And that’s a long time. Stewardship is something and Gene would probably have appreciated that.

But polishing up old episodes for resale and turning over TOS to be remade as an action movie are just admissions that Star Trek is dead and there’s no way to move it forward. The recognizable characters can be milked for all they are. We’ll get a bunch of young Kirk and Spock movies, until they stop making money, but we’ll never get that young Picard movie because it just wouldn’t work.

But the power of TNG was that it showed that Star Trek was more than Kirk and Spock, that it could be extended to other characters, starships and times. Polishing up the old footage is a waste because it ignores what TNG really accomplished in transcending the limitations of stewardship.

 

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