All good things…

When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. -Paul of Tarsus

In all sincerity, in his review of Picard Season 2, Mike Stoklasa nearly moved me to tears when he discussed his realization that Star Trek really was dead, comparing his journey to the that of the boys in Stand By Me (which coincidentally starred Wil Wheaton). His journey of grief led him to face the realities of life, put away childish things, and blossom into a man (who subjects his friends to shitty movies and laughs at old people for a living).

After the disaster that was Season 1 of Picard, I figured that the powers that be…the writers, producers, Paramount+…would have corrected course and made a proper send off for the legendary cast of Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Then the trailer above dropped.

And I’ll admit: my heart absolutely sank to my feet. Patrick Stewart will no longer be alone in his debasement for the upcoming season. Now the entire cast of TNG will be along for this pitiful, disgusting ride.

I could go on ripping this trailer to shreds, but I won’t. You know why? Because someone…a LOT of someones…LOVE this show. When the Star Wars prequels arrived, they were derided by the entire fan base. But they made a FUCK TON of money. So I knew in my heart, despite me hating the SHIT out of the prequels, there’s gonna be a whole generation that will love them.

And honestly, good for them. It’s the next generation of fans that these long-established franchises are aiming at. I could spend the rest of my life being angry at what these new producers have done to my beloved Star Trek. But I’ve been on the ride long enough.

It’s not the way I would have liked to have seen my favorite character go out, but he was a hero of my childhood. And it’s time to put childish things away.

Farewell TNG

***

But you know what I WON’T put away…or even put DOWN:

That’s right: the works of Joseph D Newcomer and Dead Star Press!

And I have GREAT fucking news: I went BACK to the airport to harass that guy from last week. And to get me OFF his ass, he told me something that BLEW my mind:

I said “31% off for the entire month of October! You gotta be shittin me!”

And HE said, “why would I be shitting you? I’m AFRAID of you?!”

So after the police and the Los Angeles Superior Court banned me permanently from the airport, I immediately saved 31% off my next purchase at Dead Star Press!

Look at what I bought:

Jealous? Well you TOO can look totally dope AND feel comfortable when you purchase this shirt for 31% off at Dead Star Press

Discount will be applied at checkout!

Dead Star Press: It’s okay to be a weirdo, but at least be a LITERATE weirdo!

Frasier unleashed

Great news everyone!

Not only is Blade Runner getting a TV show, Paramount+ has rebooted the greatest show from the 90s: Frasier.

https://deadline.com/2022/10/frasier-sequel-series-kelsey-grammer-series-greenlight-paramount-plus-1235134390/amp/

Details are scant, but it appears that this new iteration will take place in Toronto, where Paramount+ studios are conveniently located. But to be honest guys, I’m not too thrilled about the direction of this show.

For example, in the pilot episode, we learn that Frasier Crane was “canceled” from his Seattle radio program for dropping racial slurs on air IN ADDITION to facing numerous sexual harassment allegations from Roz Doyle which Frasier attributes to his relapsed alcoholism. As if that wasn’t bad enough, Jordan Peterson has been cast to play himself as he advocates for Frasier’s employment as a professor at the University of Toronto. Since David Hyde Pierce will not be returning as a series regular, Peterson will be stepping in as Frasier’s sidekick. The two will, presumably, share colorful banter regarding Freudian vs Jungian schools of psychology as they lament cancel culture on college campuses.

Another strange decision from Paramount+ is the casting of Slavoj Zizek, again playing himself, for frequent guest appearances. Not much is known about this role, but it is presumed that Zizek will serve as Peterson’s arch nemesis by interfering in his numerous failed romantic relationships (i.e. by cockblocking him).

Kelsey Grammer will serve as executive producer and head writer.

I’m left scratching my head on why Paramount+ greenlit this project. Frasier is a beloved show. It’s just an odd decision from Grammer to make his most famous character a rabid 9-11 Truther. Perhaps Paramount should go back to the drawing board on this one.

That’s just my two cents

Strange New Worlds. it’s pretty good 😔

So I guess I owe Alex Kurtzman an apology.

I was reading an article somewhere by someone that ranked all the Star Trek TV series. They placed placed SNW at #3.

Already.

Only four episodes have aired.

But here’s the sad part: I’d rank it there too 😔

Yes, SNW is pretty damn good. I’m ashamed to admit it. The nerds may nitpick the series to death. They may question its science or its adherence to canon. They may bitch about nuTrek being too “woke” (Star Trek’s always been woke). They, like me, may never want to admit Alex Kurtzman finally did something right. But they know in their hearts: SNW is quality Star Trek.

I knew Star Trek had a JJ Abrams/Alex Kurtzman problem when Into Darkness went into production a little late because, it seemed, they just straight up forgot about it. And the final product was predictably shit.

That’s when I came to the conclusion that Star Trek should have died with the ending of Enterprise. OR they should have waited longer than 5 years to reboot the franchise.

ST just wasn’t out of the public consciousness long enough to make much of an impact, I felt. And to be honest, I still kinda feel that way.

Can you imagine if Paramount waited until NOW to reboot Star Trek?

We probably would have been given an “R-rated” treatment directed by Denis Villanueva, where the 24th Century would have been presented as completely alien to the 21st Century audiences. Probably graphic violence and nudity galore as Starfleet officers take it all in stride due to Vulcan, stoic ideals permeating the Federation.

It was a missed opportunity tbh because Paramount wanted to continue exploiting the pockets of Trek fans.

But, finally, 13 years after ST09, we finally get quality Star Trek. 👍

tapping into the Roddenberry box

We can all agree: Kurtzman era Star Trek has been godawful. There was no reason to think that Strange New Worlds would be any different, but then the first episode became available on YouTube. So I thought: “fuck it, I’ll give it a shot.”

Whoever’s running SNW had the right idea: just tap the ball into the hole. Don’t try to do too much.

It’s common to assume that Trek fans are notoriously hard to please . This is false. In fact, they’re a little too easy to please. Furthermore, I’d say that Star Trek is stupidly easy to write: minimize drama between the main characters, the Federation humanistic…almost utopian…ideals always win out, the “alien of the week” is analogous to current events, and everything can be solved using science…even if the science is totally pulled out of your ass.

This is also called the (Gene) “Roddenberry Box.” TNG writers initially struggled with it until Michael Piller turned staying within it into an art. The Next Generation is now considered one of the best shows in the sci-fi genre. It’s also the benchmark for which all other Trek shows are evaluated.

Hollywood writers, especially ones that aren’t familiar with Star Trek, might think they have to do MORE to make the story interesting. But they really don’t. You can “challenge” the box every now and then, but the optimism and science MUST win out.

So using this criteria, based on the first episode, Strange New Worlds is Star Trek…which is more than I can say for Discovery and Picard. Yes, that’s a low bar to hurdle but I guess third time is a charm. Maybe the rest of it will be shit, but as long as the show runners don’t try to do too much, they might have a pretty good show.

Still not paying for Paramount+ tho.