Hey everybody. Michael C. here.
When the Trekkies complain that the JJ Abrams reboot had abandoned the spirit of the franchise, I understand their point. I am certainly no Trekkie (or do they prefer Trekker? See, I have no idea.) But I was raised on Star Trek: TNG, and while that show was never a gateway drug to the larger Trek universe, it did instill a respect for what the brand could be at its best. Its combination of exploration adventure, an optimistic portrait of the future, and Bradbury-esque ethical conundrums is a potent mix when it’s firing on all cylinders.
So I sympathize when the die-hard fans accuse Abrams of gutting the heart out of the franchise and stuffing the shell with streamlined, box office friendly action. Sure the ship is still the Enterprise, and Kirk and Spock are still at the helm, but is it still Star Trek?
At the same time, as a movie fan first and foremost, I also felt the thing to do is judge the movie on its own terms. Should I deny I had a good time at a film because it didn’t meet my preconceived notions of what constitutes a Star Trek movie?
Now that Star Trek: Into Darkness has delivered more of the same hyper-charged fun and kicked off the debate again (Headline from Vulture: Prepare to be Bombarded Into Happiness) I think it’s about time I resolved the issue. Just how upset should I be about the dumbing down of Star Trek?