Apologies for the delay in my post but I was locked out of my flat and uncertain if i’d be taking part in this blogfest at all! Gotta be honest, been looking forwards to this one for a while because I have had a major soft spot for Star Trek for some time! Well, most Star Treks… as you will see below! This is the Star Trek As We Know It Blogest, being held at Elli Garratt’s amazing SF blog. Our opinions on Star Trek were startlingly at odds with each other, but I love that about the show. So much came out of it that people can like a whole variety of different things. Below are my 5 fave characters and why.
Top 5 Favourite Characters
I had such a crush on Data when I was a little girl and even as I grew out of that, his character still totally fascinates me. He is by far the most intelligent creature on the Enterprise and yet he is inherently separate from all life forms. Data’s unique existence in the world as a fully operating android means that he has some of my favourite episodes in the whole Star Trek canon because there are so many story lines that inherently leap from it. Whether he’s attempting to understand emotions, relationships or slang, he makes us look at the interactions we take for granted by questioning what exactly they mean. The most important thing about Data is that, despite his metallic composition, he has a warmth that makes him a likable character. He is not boring and aloof, he’s curious by always seeking to learn more and I think that’s why I can always relate to him.
2. Captain Picard
I promise these won’t all be Next Gen but Picard is by far my favourite captain. As if to recoil from the campy glory that was Captain Kirk, we get a captain in the Next Generation that is moody, reclusive and thoughtful. Rather than wooing the ladies, Picard is as dramatic as he is forbearing. He has some of the single best speeches of all the Star Trek’s and he delivers them with such gusto that it makes me feel a little weak at the knees (Shakespeare training did that, thank him for it!). Sophsticated and pensive, brooding and kind, I adore Picard and his constant sense of honour. I mean, does he ever do anything that would make you snort “What a dick!”? It made me smile when he teamed up with Kirk in one of the films but for me, there will never be a comparison.
3. Seven of Nine
I have a thing for characters who are similar to humanity but crucially different. Perhaps I also like characters that are emotionally distant and can look upon their crew members’ interactions in an unbiased way (though Seven of nine is certainly more aloof than Data). Seven saved Voyager, which was really quite dull for a Star Trek show until she turned up. Her association with the terrifying Borg makes her transition to humanity difficult and utterly fascinating to watch. The Borg are all she’s ever known so it’s amazing that she relates the crew to things that she prefer or remembers about being a borg (affectionately calling the crew her ‘collective’). From being someone no one could trust, Seven also redeems herself and she becomes one helluva character in the Voyager crew.
Yes, another aloof and emotionally distant character! Hmm, never realised my fave SF characters were so alike before. I think this must be because their struggles with emotions and relationships always form such interesting episodes and story lines. T’Pol becomes addicted to feeling things, something that I’m sure most Trekkers would scoff at seeing as she’s a Vulcan. I think I’m not so involved in Star Trek, so I allowed for T’Pol’s frankly odd behaviour at times. She is also an ambassador for an alien race when humanity is finally getting its wings. She’s there to nanny and care for the stupid humans and everyone knows it but she finds her place in the crew and sorts out herself in the process. She learns by being amongst people different to her and she truly does get some amazing episodes.
Yes, Yes, I know. These characters are all very similar! I love Q and all the Q’s in the universe. A band of gods who can do as they please but aren’t supposed to get too involved. Q likes to get involved though and seems to take particular pleasure in bothering Picard in particular. All the Q episodes of Enterprise are worth a look because they involve some truly random stuff. Especially the episode where Q becomes human, that’s an impressive one because he maintains his aloofness regardless of his new state. He’s very aware of how godly he is but you could hardly call him arrogant as he really is that powerful. I enjoyed Q because there was so much potential and I remember the first few episodes of the Next Generation so fondly. Perhaps it was a bit of an overstatement putting him in my top five but he’s certainly and dude and I love him for it!
Top Five Episodes
To my great embarrassment, I don’t own the DVD’s of Star Trek and have to depend on my surprisingly exact memory to inform you of my favourite episodes. To do that, I’ll be implementing the Friends method of episode titles. (Thought it’d be more fun than looking them up!)
1. The Ones Where Picard Becomes a Borg
Any fan of Picard loves this series of episodes. They were cutting, shocking and the scars that were inflicted upon the Captain would last forever. Deep and dark, I loved these episodes and the horrors they held for the crew.
2. The One Where Data Is Kidnapped
One of my many fave episodes with my beloved Data, this deals with how he is so unique that a collector decides to take him. Data is kept as little more than a pet, much to his discomfort and has to use his wits to escape. Lots of introspection on Data’s part and his confusion at the collector really hits home about how stupid such a collection would be.
3. The One Where Vulcans Invent Velcro
I feel bad for the guy who invented velcro because aliens always get the credit for it these days. In Enterprise, Archer is regaled with a tale of how a group of Vulcans became stranded on Earth in the 50’s and had to conceal themselves as they rebuilt their ship. I love the struggles they have to go through and the amazing interactions they have to face. I laughed the whole way through to be honest.
4. The One Where Troy Has A Son (tied with) The One Where Data Has A Daughter
More Next Gen, these two episodes are both well remembered by myself, though Data is a preferred character. Troy becomes the mother of an alien being that wants to experience being a human life form, growing incredibly quickly but still forming a bond with his ‘mother’. Data creates his daughter to have a companion but accidentally makes her too advanced and she is unable to continue existing whilst still developing. In both shows, the parents must say a heartfelt goodbye to a child they had barely gotten to know but it still made me feel for them.
5. The One Where Everyone On The Enterprise Is Drunk
This is a great episode about an infectious disease that makes the whole crew go a bit… odd. Picard is amazing to watch in this episode and Data is also a great show. It’s a silly episode but it’s always stood out in my mind as something truly enjoyable to watch.
So what have I learnt? I need to watch more of Voyager because none of their episodes sprung to mind, though I know I enjoyed them at the time. I also want to point out that I do truly enjoy characters that have a deeper sense of humanity, I’m not a robot myself!
There’s no point in my writing about the films because I don’t like any of them. I’m sure that’s herasey but I truly don’t think they’re very good. There might be a point where I can no longer cope with the writing or the storylines. That probably sounds ridiculously pompus but I switch off during the films, whereas the episodes always engross me. I have no idea why.