FROM JASON’S COMMAND CHAIR — What is it about Trekkies that makes them obsess over ill-conceived time-travel plots?
Andrew and I just finished watching the first installment of Star Trek: Of Gods and Men, the extremely low-budget, convoluted mini-series being produced by various Trek alums as a “40th anniversary present” to fans.
We are perplexed, to say the least.
Directed by Tim Russ (Tuvok from Star Trek Voyager and a terrorist from that TNG episode where Picard wants to go horseback riding but crawls around the Enterprise’s innards instead), part one weighed in at 26 minutes, 12 seconds. Each minute had us scratching our heads and asking, “WHY? FOR THE LOVE OF KIRK, WHY?!”
The plot (as it is): Charlie Evans — from the second episode of season one in 1966 — returns. As a young and powerful psionic 40 years ago, Charlie tried to take over the Enterprise after he was rescued from the surface of the planet Thasus.
Now he’s back with a grudge against Captain Kirk. He shows up on the bridge to confront Uhura (Nichelle Nichols reprising her role), Chekov (Walter Koenig), John Harriman (Alan Ruck — Cameron from Ferris Beuller’s Day Off!), Janice Rand (Grace Lee Whitney), and Kirk’s nephew — who is now in command of the good ol’ NCC-1701.
Charlie uses The Guardian of Forever (from the second-to-last episode of season one, The City On the Edge of Forever — you know, the one with Joan Collins) to go back in time, presumably to assassinate Kirk as an infant a la The Terminator.
As Doc Brown can tell you, changing the past changes the future. Charlie’s actions spawn (as far as we can tell) an alternate time line. It’s not the Mirror Universe that both TOS and DS9 visited several times. In this one, Harriman — an EVIL, Orion slave-girl owning Harriman — captains the Enterprise. Instead of the Federation, he is a member of the Galactic Order.
He captures a
Correllian Corvette separatist ship and imprisons Princess Leia this time line’s version of Chekov, who heads the Rebel Alliance resistance against the Galactic Empire Order. Then Grand Moff Tarkin Harriman fires an Death Star beam Omega device at Alderaan Vulcan because it supported secession from the Order.
Overall, the plot seems muddled, the CG is kiddie-grade, the Federation-time line sets are straight out of the 60s instead of the darker 80s movie versions, Ruck’s alternate time line shirt is nice and glittery, and Garrett Wang is… well, Garrett Wang. With a wig.
All that said, it’s still Star Trek and we’ll still watch Act II of Of Gods and Men as soon as it’s released — if only to laugh at it.
I already linked to it, but again: Watch the movie here.
Don’t miss such great dialog as: