May 17, 2013

Lessons From the Star Trek Universe

Yes, I just got back from watching Star Trek Into Darkness in IMAX 3D, and I'm still a bit high from the movie. I love the Star Trek universe, even if my knowledge of the franchise is not sufficient enough for me to be called a Trekkie. Still, I'm proud to say that I was able to identify a lot of Trek tributes within the movie, even when Benedict Cumberbatch is distracting me with his smolder and voice.  Haaaaaay.

But!!! I'm not here to give a review or a plot summary of the movie, there are a lot of blog sites that do that (because Wak is my friend, check out SAN's review hehehe).  Instead, I'd like to share some reflections, realizations, and explanations as to why Star Trek, for me, is the ultimate science fiction that celebrates the triumph of the human race--which should also be the future of the real world!
  1. A Utopian future IS a possible future. Most Hollywood blockbusters thrive on plots of a chaotic future. Alien invasions, self-aware robots, zombie apocalypse... most of these movies focus on the exploitation of science that results to the near-destruction of humanity.  However, Star Trek sees things differently.  Humanity is at the pinnacle of science, and against all odds, man manages not to destroy the Earth.
  2. World Peace is definitely achievable. Sure, in the Trek universe, political conflicts still exist in some parts of space.  Vulcans vs. Romulans, Klingons vs. Humans, Borg vs... everyone, but in this universe, the Federation prioritizes diplomacy over warfare.  As much as possible, territories are at peace with each other--and with the rest of the universe. Warfare should never be the first option for engagement... unless you're engaging with the Borg.
  3. Race--or gender--is never an issue. People in the Trek universe will not judge you by the color of your skin, what you have between your legs, or by the planet you were born. In TOS, it was Kirk and Uhura who made the first television inter-racial kiss. Redshirts, not some token black guy, are associated to most of the stock character crew deaths. There are just as many women in the crew as there are men, and even girls become captains, too.  You have an equal opportunity to contribute to society, as long as you are skilled and able to do so.
  4. Logic and emotion are not opposing forces. Kirk is the brash, emotional one, while Spock is the controlled, calculating one. But no matter how different they are from each other, they work best when they are supporting and complementing each other's ideas. As long as they see past their arguments, and resolve to watch each other's backs, they will always able to do all sorts of heroic feats and ultimately save the crew.
  5. Maybe aliens exist, after all.  WARNING: Spoilers here!!!  STID opens with the Enterprise crew attempting to save a primitive civilization from extinction, to be brought about by the eruption of a volcano. While Spock plants a cold fusion device (dunno what it's actually called) inside the crater, the rest of the crew hides inside the Enterprise, submerged under the planet's ocean.  However, the volcano starts to explode and in order to successfully beam Spock out, the ship must rise from the ocean to get a direct aim of Spock. The civilization from that planet sees the ship and how it correlates to the freezing of the eruption, and starts to worship the ship as a god. This sequence made me think: what if aliens really did visit us during our past, and that the Great Pyramid and other ancient wonders were indeed structures made by/for aliens?  If this were true, then we have to build a warp engine soon, lest we miss an opportunity for first contact.
Okay, my brain's fried out. Gotta catch some zzzz's.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the plug, Iam! :)

    While Star Wars will ALWAYS be better in my book, I totally agree with your points about what makes Star Trek great!

    Also, yes, Benedict Cumberbatch was bad-ass.