In a recent post I asked people what they wanted to see in the next Star Trek movie. Here is a compilation of their thoughts and my thoughts on what we hope happens. These are not in any particular order. Enjoy.
Adjust how Trek is treating women. Give them respect - visible designations of rank is imperative. They do not need permission from anyone to do their jobs. Focus on what they do, not what they look like - the “Barbie in space” look is impractical and absurd except as eye candy for male ticket buyers in the coveted demographic; nix that. Women should have names – it’s depressing to think Kirk’s mom and Spock’s mom no longer have names – they were never referred to by name. Never. Bring back Chapel and Rand and Gaila. Honor Majel. In short, portray women as people.
Either stop portraying Kirk as a misogynistic sexist wanker (one person’s brilliant description) or explain why he is and why it is inappropriate in the 23rd century. Sexism is a 21st century problem. If Kirk and Marcus lived in the here and now, Kirk would be in a whole lot of trouble for sexual harassment of an employee on the job. Men in positions of power should never, ever ogle their employees and make inappropriate comments. The honorable James T. Kirk is not a creeper, stalker or pervert. He is the original feminist and deserves that designation.
Celebrate diversity in all forms. We would like to see more women, people of color, people of various ages and people who have different genders and orientations. Trek has less diversity than my own workplace. We would like named LGBTQ characters who aren’t fridged.
Improve the relationship and interactions between the triumvirate. That dynamic of Kirk-Spock-McCoy made the original Trek strong and a lot of fun. Please give Karl Urban something to do! Show the crew developing friendships and relationships outside of the bridge, during recreation times instead of only interacting during emergencies. Show that they care about one another.
We would love to see a more cohesive character arc for each character. We are two movies in and we know nothing about McCoy, Uhura, Chekov and Sulu. We know very little about Scott. We would love to see more about how being an abandoned, abused child affects the adult Kirk. How does being a bullied child affect Spock? These are the motivations of the characters and we haven’t seen it explored.
We are tired of super-villians destroying Earth and San Francisco in particular and our guys swooping in to save the day. It’s overdone, ho hum – I can think of many examples – save the whales, stop the Borg, Nero and Khan. Explain the increased militarization of Star Trek and it’s deviation from being a humanitarian and peacekeeping armada (vs them saying that this is what the Federation (United Federation of Planets aka UFP) is – major mistake that was not caught; the Federation is a collection of races/species/planets working together). How has the destruction of the planet Vulcan affected the UFP?
What is going on with Spock Prime? What is the role of New Vulcan? Where is it? What role does Spock Prime have there? There is such a tragedy around Spock Prime – will he die alone or with Kirk in the next movie? We would like to see him used more than as a jump start.
Stop killing parents and women as cheap plot devices. George Kirk, Spock’s Mama (since she was not deemed worthy of having a name) and Admiral Marcus. Those are cheap short cuts to provoke emotional responses in our male main characters. How does losing a parent affect our characters? Where is Mama Kirk, who was also not important enough to name?
Spock being a volcanic emotional fucked up mess is absurd. Even in a world where his mother dies and his planet is destroyed and Kirk dies in front of him…. cut the guy a break already. We understand Zachary Quinto is a spectacular actor… give him something to do besides throw a fit. Spock stands for logic and reason and cold intelligence; it’s overkill. Spock Prime as a younger man was ashamed for being part human – why is there a difference in this Spock, since the changes did not occur until Nero destroyed Vulcan?
What separates Star Trek from other science fiction stories has always been its positive vision of the future. We been inundated with a whole bunch of dystopian movies and apocalyptic end of the world dramas for the past 20 years, but lately it’s been ramped up even more (i.e. The Hunger Games, Divergence, 2012, World War Z, even The Matrix movies). Star Trek has traditionally shown us a future where poverty, disease, racism, sexism etc have been eliminated or dealt with. We want that restored. Show us a future we would want to live in.
That’s the list. Paramount, please consider these elements! Thank you very much.