Thursday, July 14, 2005

Geek Convergence

I've just been e-mailing with pop culture observer (and folk musician...) John Voorhees over at Soundacious, where he's posted an interesting theory on Geeks that fits right in with the Geek Conversation I had with the Flick Filosopher yesterday at Geek Philosophy. Yikes, is that a sentence or what?

Anyway, John has assembled a sort of Geek Movie Paradigm (in other words, the necessary ingredients of a Geek Movie success). Among his components are: A formerly fallen-franchise, now in disrepair but still beloved, a grown-up fan-boy-style director, a critically acclaimed actor (but not someone too famous, like say Tom Cruise), and a new focus on dramatic elements of the franchise, rather than the traditional fantasy aspects. I think he's got a pretty good point, and the blog is a valuable addition to the Geek Debate.

He's already mentioned in the post how it applies to Batman, Battlestar, and Doctor Who, and I thought immediately of Sam Raimi's Spider-man.

But I'll tell you something - Star Trek (one of my all time favorite franchises...) needs a face lift. We can't keep having replicative fading like Enterprise. Imagine Sam Raimi or Christopher Nolan on that project? Paramount, are you listening? Not likely, given my current traffic, but it's still a good idea...


  1. Thanks for the plug! Woot!

    You're right. Star Trek would be _perfect_ for this kind of revamp.

    But one of the things that worked particularly well for the new Doctor Who was giving the whole thing a rest for a few years. That last Sylvester McCoy season was kicking ass and taking names, but it just didn't have the viewership it deserved because so much of the stuff that came beforehand was goofy-ass rubbish (Greatest Show in the Galaxy? The Happiness Patrol?) and the show was taken for granted.

    But Doctor Who was part of British culture almost to a greater degree than Star Trek is to American culture. A whole generation was born who basically knew what a Dalek was, but had hardly seen them. Eventually, the time was right to bring the show back, and it rode a wave of nostalgia and good will. The fact that the show also happens to be tremendously awesome keeps the viewers watching after the initial curiosity wears off.

    Yes, Star Trek needs a serious overhaul. But I also think it needs a couple of years worth of ... absence. Lets get some fonder hearts out there!

  2. I couldn't agree more. I think that Enterprise and to some extent Voyager as well squandered the good will people felt towards Star Trek. It may need to go away for a while, which is kinda sad, but perhaps necessary. I purchased all three seasons of the Original Series on DVD last Christmas and just had an amazing time watching the show, so perhaps DVD can keep us Trekkers satisfied for five, ten years, until the series is ready to make a comeback. I know this is probably anathema to fans of the Next Generation and Deep Space Nine, but over time, I've realized my loyalty is to the original characters (not necessarily the actors, though I love 'em), but the characters. I would like to see a new Kirk-era series with the characters on new adventures. I miss Spock.

  3. Having said all this, I am intrigued by the idea I've heard bouncing around of a Star Trek universe cast only intended for the movies.

    Back when Star Trek: Generations came out, I was curious about the dynamic aboard the Enterprise B which was shuttling Admiral Kirk to his rendezvous with cosmic destiny. The captain was played by Alan Ruck of Ferris Bueller's Day Off and Spin City. Personally, I'd love to see a few movies starring Captain Cameron, as I like to think of him.

    C'mon! That could rock!

  4. It could rock, possibly - with good writers. What I really would like to see would no doubt tank at the box office, though. I want a return to bee-hive haircuts, mini-skirts, and gold/blue/red velour uniforms with braids on the sleeves. I also like circular glowy nacelles. I'd love an Original Series era Star Trek with all those retro-touches (including the phaser that looks like an electric shaver). Sigh.

  5. Yeah, as long as you could do it without a trace of sillness. Believe in the universe, don't mock it. Really stick to your source material.

    Are you familiar with steampunk fiction and RPG's? Based on the kind of technology in Jules Verne. Sorta what Wild Wild West tried to do ... only, you know, good.

  6. Yeah - that's right! Exactly. I know exactly what you mean. It's retro but oddly plausible. If the special effects were good by today's standards, those Original Series costumes and special effects could still rock. I agree - no silliness allowed (which would be hard, given that this is Star Trek we're talking about). One of the things I miss most about the Original Series is the sense of humor, the joie de vivre. The new series tended not to have it, although lately the Next Gen movies have joked things up a bit to precious little effect. No one can compare with the Holy Trinity of Shatner-Nimoy-Kelly for this kind of thing.