Thursday, April 02, 2015


1 comment:

Jeyl said...

Ugh... Gene...

Ok. I know he created Star Trek which is still to this day one of my favorite franchises of all time. I'm thankful he created it. But, if there's one thing I know from the show's history, everything that I love about the series was in spite of him. For someone who thinks we should be prepared for life beyond our solar system, he certainly failed when he said that if Star Trek "wasn't about humanity, what's the point?". And sure enough, there's a lot of evidence that shows not only did Gene not really care about 'variations', he was flat out against different ideas. Every writer who joined Star Trek: The Next Generation was gone by the end of Season 3 because everyone hated working with Gene for having different ideas.

Take his "The worst thing that could possibly happen is for all of us to look and think and act alike" quote. The biggest detail he brought in Star Trek that works against this is the character of Data. From the very beginning of "The Next Generation", Data is on a quest to be human. Literally. He wants to be made flesh and blood.

RIKER: Do you consider yourself superior to us?
DATA: I am superior, sir. In many ways. But I would gladly give it up to be human.

And this is his entire character arc all the way to Nemesis. This isn't a character who embraces what makes him different, unique or even special. This is someone who wants to conform for no other reason than because the show wants to say that humans are awesome. Don't believe me? How about a little bit of Season 1 Picard deliberately missing the point of Shakespeare.

PICARD: I know Hamlet. And what he might said with irony, I say with conviction. What a piece of work is man. How noble in reason. How infinite in faculty. In form, in moving, how express and admirable. In action, how like an angel. In apprehension, how like a god.
Q: Surely you don't really see your species like that, do you?
PICARD: I see us one day becoming that, Q. Is it that what concerns you?

That's great Picard. Say that one more time only this time while you're in front of all the alien representatives during a Federation summit.

But if there's one thing Gene Roddenberry did that totally mitigates his supposed 'inspiring' quotes, it's this.

"Star Trek Theme created by Alexander Courage and Gene Roddenberry"

Want to know which sections of the theme contains Gene's contributions? Trick question. THERE AREN'T ANY. Gene Roddenberry took advantage of Courage by having it in the composer's contract that if Gene created lyrics for the theme that he would get a 'created by' credit with Courage along with half the royalties. So Gene wrote some lyrics without ever intending them to be used in any way, submitted the theme and now gets half the royalties whenever it's used. The man who preached "in the future, there will be no hunger and there will be no greed." not only wanted his cut of Star Trek, he wanted other people's cuts as well.

PICARD: Humanity is no longer obsessed with the accumulation of things. We've eliminated hunger, want, the need for possessions. We've grown out of our infancy.

Gene Roddenberry. He created my favorite franchise, but he wasn't the best part of it.