Exciting News For Fans of Good Storytelling
We are pretty excited about this news. More excited than a Shirtpunch coupon coinciding with a Star Trek bundle. According to Variety.com, Bryan Fuller has been named the showrunner for the new Star Trek series. This has us excited for a number of reasons. For one, he’s a great TV writer, and he understands genre fiction very well. Secondly: he has written for Star Trek before.
The Great Writing of Bryan Fuller:
You may not know it, but your television viewing habits have been influenced by Fuller’s great writing over the past ten years. Remember in season 1 of Heroes when everyone thought it was one of the greatest shows of all time? Fuller was a part of that. He personally wrote “Company Man”, a heartbreaking tale where the Horn-Rimmed Glasses man has his memory erased of his daughter to protect her from his bosses. The episode was named by TVguide as one of the 100 greatest episodes of all time.
Different writers on tv shows will usually be the ‘voice’ of a particular character. In Fuller’s situation he was the voice of “Claire”, the invincible cheerleader. Many fans and critics felt that her character (one of the most popular on the show) failed to grow after season 1.
Fuller left after season 1 to launch “Pushing Daisies“. If you haven’t seen Pushing Daisies, you likely know someone who has and glares at you each time you say you haven’t seen …
Star Trek Fandom is Going Through What No Fandom Has Gone Through Before:
In this world where geek culture has grown so fast that people are actually pretending to be geeks and nerds to ‘fit in’, it’s difficult to even conceive of a time when being a fan of a geek-culture phenomenon like Star Trek was likely to get you stuffed into lockers in school. Star Trek was way ahead of the curve: fan conventions, letter-writing campaigns and all the facets of a large following all seemed to happen to Star Trek first.
But now that geek culture is so popular, it seems like the franchise of Star Trek is heading into uncharted territory: their own fandom seems to be choking the franchise right out of profitability.
Last year I went to the big Star Trek convention in Las Vegas. It was awesome. I got to meet almost the whole cast of Next Generation (Patrick Stewart and Jonathan Frakes sadly weren’t there). The whole trip was quite pricey, but I found a quick sale on convention tickets, and then I researched and found some coupon codes for travelocity that saved me something like $50 off the flight, so it wasn’t too bad (I used the savings to buy some Star Trek whiskey glasses).
Anyway, at this Convention people were more than ready to boo any mention of Star Trek Into Darkness. They had famously voted it as the worst Star Trek movie of all time. You didn’t see Benedict Cumberbatch …
Remember how agonizing it was for us Star Trek: TNG fans to wait from May until September for new episodes to appear? Sure, you could watch Tasha Yar die in reruns forever and ever, but seeing brand new stories was something to get excited about.
Well, it’s been 10 years since Star Trek went off the air. I managed to stick with Enterprise more out of habit than anything else. I was actually one of the people that was glad when it was put down: it felt like an old dog that you loved, but it was getting sick and it was for the best of everyone if we just put it down for a while.
Now that time has passed, my appetite for a new Star Trek series is growing. And really, it’s a little insane that Star Trek isn’t on the air right now: special effects are a lot better and cheaper than they were twenty years ago. Television is much more open to serialized television and character arcs, something that Star Trek struggled with as it built a universe while telling standalone stories. And the general public is much more accepting of strange science-fictional ideas than it ever has been. One look at our smartphone/google glass culture and you realize that Star Trek fans aren’t the ostracized nerds they once were.
There are bigger questions that need to be answered before this Star Trek thing happens. That’s for a later post. For now I wanted to talk …