In which I may have to give up my nerd card…

I don’t care which fandom you follow, this is funny.

Last night, Hubs and I were watching (finally) Star Trek: Discovery on CBS All Access. Initially, I had refused to watch since CBS was forcing us to pay to watch something that had always been over the air, but then the 7-day trial with Amazon Video became available. So we now have five days to watch 12 more episodes. Easy Peasy.

During the episode, it occurred to me why Star Trek was more accessible (nevermind the pay-to-view status of ST:D) and easier to fall into and get stuck than Star Wars was or would be. Don’t get me wrong, I am a Star Wars fan. I don’t acknowledge 1-3, and only marginally accepted 7. Rogue One (which is what…3.5?) and 8 renewed a bit of my faith. Chewbacca is my spirit animal. Han shot first. A woman’s place is in the resistance. Etc.

But last night as I was watching this brand new iteration of a very familiar universe, I started thinking about why it was so familiar. It has to do with good storytelling, something Star Trek has in spades and Star Wars doesn’t always (minus 4-6 as I stated earlier, which are perfection). It also has to do with being able to take a franchise, a story, characters, a universe – and re-create it over and over, adding to canon without re-writing canon. If you can do that as well as Star Trek has, then you can even re-write canon (the reboot of the movies) without sending millions of Trekkies screaming back into their parents’ basements.

It could also be the familiarity of the Star Trek universe. It includes our earth. I said to Hubs last night that even though the Klingons at the beginning of the pilot don’t really look as much like Klingons as they do like something out of the Underworld movies, I still have no trouble accepting them as Klingons because the language is right, the cadence of speech is right…and the message of Klingon First is right. The Starfleet uniforms change in small details, but at the end of the day, they are all still basically the same thing with different touches to indicate rank or discipline.

What does this have to do with anything other than me declaring myself a Trekkie? It’s storytelling. It’s world-building, even when the world already exists and you have to go a few million lightyears out into space to build onto what you already have. It’s what I do as a writer, and I find myself utterly fascinated with the craft and the ability. It’s bringing the galaxy far, far away into the realm of my possibility, while still taking me where no one has gone before.

Yeah, okay, maybe I will hang onto that card.

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