Published on April 29th, 2009 | by Sinéad1
I was one of the fortunate few who attended the Star Trek premiere last night in Dublin. As a lifelong Trekkie it was extra special for me to be able to see this almost two weeks early, but this isn’t going to be a review (Rick has pretty much covered that part) instead I wanted to share some of my fangirl feelings about it.
I’ve written once before about my love for science fiction, but Star Trek is definitely where it all started out. From a very early age I watched Picard and Kirk, and later Sisko and Janeway. I quite literally grew up consuming everything Trek, and in the process I learnt some very valuable life lessons. Star Trek has always had these long running ideologies – to be heroic, make the right decisions, don’t be selfish and above all else show compassion. These are part of me too. I’ve never been religious in any way, this is probably as close to it as I’d ever want to get (what would Janeway do? ).
The reason I’ve always been so drawn to Star Trek is because it portrays an attainable future, one that could actually happen and that you really wish you could be a part of. It always made me feel like I could actually fit into their world (this is probably why there are so many obsessive uniform wearing fans). In part this was because the storylines were often incredibly imaginative but they still somehow fell within the realms of possibility – the pseudo-science really helped with that. Also, the characters are just normal people, even the aliens. They aren’t superheros – but it doesn’t stop them from being able to save the world. These realisations have always inspired in me a desire to push myself harder, because for Starlfeet officers it always paid off in the end. If you worked hard enough, you too could be the Captain of a Starship one day. It didn’t matter if you were male or female, black or white or green, or bald – but you did need a hell of a lot of brains and courage too.
Through Trek I discovered and had a passion for science, technology and writing nurtured. At 7 years of age the very first thing I ever did on a computer was draw a black moustache on Leonard Nimoy’s face using MSPaint on Windows 3.0 and as soon as I got my hands on my own computer I learned to type so I could print my stories out on dot matrix paper – that always impressed my primary school teachers.
Obviously there are very many critics of Star Trek, but when you grow up with something you stick with it and see it differently to everyone else. You can gloss over the bad writing here and there, or feign no interest in the blatant overt sexualisation of the series in the late 90’s and early 00’s. It doesn’t take away from your enjoyment because you continue to feel deeply connected to it despite the plot holes and the spandex. Only someone who has grown up watching it understands the draw the franchise can have over you. Which is a pity, because in the end, it all went downhill, the last few movies and Enterprise were severely disappointing and I’d pretty much given up on it after that. I’d moved on to more modern science fiction and didn’t think Star Trek could make any kind of legitimate comeback, especially after the woeful Enterprise.
However, the new movie has completely restored my faith in the franchise. It embodies all of the things that I’ve always loved about Star Trek – great characters, great stories, incredible action sequences, moral and emotional questions, all this and it also continues to uphold the ideologies that Gene Roddenberry intended to be at the core of Starfleet.
For that I am an incredibly pleased Trekkie, and proud to be one too.
(originally posted here)