Anyways, this past weekend was one of my favorite weekends of the year--Shore Leave weekend! My mother and I have gone every years since about 2008.
(When my mom sent this around, the general response was: Somebody looks happy. LOL! It's true!)
Yes, I'm still a big Star Trek nerd, although not nearly as much now as I was in past years. I enjoy all types of fan conventions but what I especially like about Shore Leave is that it's fan-run. This means everything is reasonably priced and the atmosphere is very relaxed. We're all just here to share our love of sci-fi in general and Star Trek in particular.
Unfortunately, much like Bollywood, most of what I enjoyed about Star Trek has not been present in the new movies. The characters and setting are there but… there's no substance, no morals, no sense of reaching for something bigger than ourselves. Those things have been replaced with abs, explosions, and myopic self-study.
Last night I had the urge to pick-up my re-watch of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine again and the next episode happened to be Season Five's "Things Past" in which Odo is forced to confront a mistake he made when he was younger, sentencing three innocent men to death. I've always kind of mapped the Israel-Palestine conflict in Palestine onto the Cardassian-Bajoran conflict so there was an extra pang in my heart as Odo works through his feelings, beyond the usual flutterings stirred by the Capital A Acting done on a regular basis by the great Rene Auberjonois. Is justice more important than order? How can you admit a mistake like that when everybody looks up to you? When it contradicts your own self-image?
At the very end of the episode, Major Kira confronts Odo about the deaths and says, "I just need to know that no other innocent people died on your watch."
All Odo can say is, "I hope not."
And *boom* that's Star Trek, not explosions and abs and white guys and whatever crap that hack J.J. Abrams stuffed in the last couple movies.
Sure, Star Trek, like old Bollywood, can be unintentionally campy and ham-fisted in its moralizing and just deeply, deeply un-cool but we love it because of those things. I feel like there's no room for characters who are inherently good anymore, or at least striving to be good. There's nobody left to look up to. All our protagonists are now either "cool" anti-heroes or a whiny indulgent man-boys…
Thanks for indulging me! And now, back to your regularly scheduled programming. ♥