When I was a kid, I was obsessed with Star Trek. I mean that, I was obsessed in a borderline unhealthy way. I planned my Sundays around the episode of The Original Series rerun that my local Fox affiliate would air. Every weeknight at ten, the same station (Fox really didn’t have a lot going on in the early nineties), would air a ten o’clock episode of The Next Generation. It was these broadcasts--airing one hour after my bed time at that age--that are probably responsible for my complete inability to fall asleep at a reasonable hour to this very day.
I honestly don’t know what it was about the show, or rather, the entire franchise, that I found so appealing. All I remember for sure is that if you were unlucky enough to cross my path at age nine, there was a good chance that you would be waylaid by my complete obsession with the USS Enterprise and her crew.
That’s not to say that I won’t still totally waste your time by talking endlessly about a franchise that hasn’t made any new material for television for--Good Lord, has it really been eight years?
For now, I’d like to focus on The Next Generation, starting with Encounter at Farpoint and then skipping around throughout the series--possibly including episodes of other series if they should be tied into what we cover in any interesting ways. Should anyone want me to look at a specific episode, movie, or specific theme, I’ll be more than happy to take requests.
I don’t want to call these reviews, though. I won’t necessarily be focusing on how individual shows or story lines stand on as works of fiction, but more how they stand up as individual contributions of to the universe and its mythology. I might not even focus on an individual episode.
So, let’s see if we can figure out how and why Star Trek touched us--well, mostly me, ‘cuz I’m the one writing this crap--and what that means about us.
So, let’s begin with Star Trek: The Next Generation Season 1, Episode 1&2 Encounter at Farpoint.