Editor’s Note: Today we have a special treat for all Star Trek fanboys (which includes myself). Our good friend Joe Strike gives us a behind scenes report of the recent Star Trek XI preview:
Paramount sneaks us a peek at… ‘Slash Trek’!
I put on the freebie Star Trek t-shirt I picked up at Comicon ’07, the one that says ’12-26-08′ on the back and went to see Paramount shake their big sci-fi moneymaker – the return, after a blessed multi-year respite, Star Trek. The lure (apart from free popcorn, soda and a big bag of candy): a quartet of scenes from its May ’09 guaranteed blockbuster or, as the studio exec introduced it, “a great re-invention of a classic American franchise.” (Well, at least he didn’t call it a brand.)
Director/producer J.J. Abrams, he of Cloverfield and Mission: Impossible 3 ‘fame,’ intro’d the quartet of clips. (Cloverfield sucked, by the way, but you probably figured that out on your own.) “I’ve never been a Star Trek fan,’ JJA all but boasted. (Evidently he’s been doing this at every press opportunity.) “I never got it,” sez he, because as a grade-schooler he couldn’t figure out whether he identified with Spock or Kirk (Me, I was always more of a ‘David Vincent’ fan, Roy Thinnes’ character on the contemporaneous Larry Cohen sci-fi/paranoia series The Invaders.) Now however, and just in the nick of time, he’s “become a Trekker,” just to let everyone know he’s hip enough not to say ‘Trekkie.’
Effects were kick-ass spectacular (as they had damn well better be), especially in a gravity drop sending Sulu, Kirk and a doomed Red Shirt from the edge of space down to a miles-high Romulan sky platform. The narrative (not that I’m an expert on the subject, I’m much better versed in Babylon 5) seems to respect established ST ‘canon.’ All your favorites hands are on deck, their performers channeling the originals to one degree or another: Zachary (Heroes) Quinto’s Spock wins the ‘indistinguishable in appearance from the original’ (who, big deal spoiler, shows up via Doc Brown’s DeLorean) award; Karl Urban’s Bones cops the ‘sounds just like the original’ trophy; Britwit Simon (Hot Fuzz) Pegg brogues it up as Scotty and Anton Yelchin piles on the Russian accent 10 times thicker than Walter Koenig ever dared (then again, with that name, maybe he really talks that way.)
And Chris Pine, as a Kirk for the 21st (excuse me, I meant to say 23rd) century? Well… he’d be right at home on the WB, if that network were still around. His James T. is one handsome, cocky dude alright. And speaking of cocky, in the four clips they screened, there were several moments where he and Spock exchange knowing (smoldering might be more accurate) glances in tight close-up… Jeezis Christ man, we are totally in Slash City! I mean, come on, you just know these 2 guys are getting it on every chance they get; if only all those space babes knew…
Joe is an occasional animation scripter and freelance NYC writer covering animation and sci-fi/fantasy entertainment. His work has appeared in the NY Daily News, Newsday, the New York Press and, as they used to say on Rocky and Bullwinkle, ‘a host of others.’ He is a regular contributor to the animation industry website awn.com, but it’s much easier to visit joestrike.com to see what he’s been up to lately.