Sunday, May 29, 2016

Star Trek TV Series - Trailer Analysis! ( A Geekdom Aside)


Now that we’ve all had a week to properly assess this teaser trailer for the new star trek series coming to CBS streaming, let us present our key preliminary findings. 


These findings are based on close observations of every frame of the trailer, from the perspective a longstanding Trekker and expert on the entire Saga. Vague impressions and news-bits floating in cyberspace have also informed the analysis.

Here are the key points.

The voiceover begins “CBS presents a new adventure…” and we quickly go to warp speed away from earth and zoom by numerous celestial bodies, the key here is 25 seconds in:

You see this? A worm hole perhaps? Or some other disturbance in the space-time continuum?   

This suggests to me that whatever setting we may get in the New Star Trek Show – it will be it’s own version of the universe.  Not dependent upon what Abrams’ Nu Trek recent movie mishandlings, and perhaps not even closely tied to  the canonical end of things in prior series, namely Enterprise – I believe bears the most responsibility for nearly killing the Franchise, and Voyager – which saw the Federation at its most advanced state…

I dare say this “clean break” approach has much promise. Vulcan may still exist.  We’re not through the looking glass, we’re elsewhere. Let us give them the benefit of the doubt here and see how it plays out.

In any case, after the warp speed journey ends, we get into the official details. 

POINT 2, With  "New Crews, New Villains, New Heroes, New Worlds" then...

Isn’t interesting what’s been laid out here?

Did you catch that?  New crews.  crewS. As in plural.  
Will we get more than one Captain? More than one Chief Engineer?  And not in that Voyager/Maquis way... but a truly multi-team experience?  

Villains and Heroes are listed separately from the crews.  
This implies that the crews may not all be heroic. There could be shades of gray here. Many shades of gray... 


This  Star Trek will be an Anthology Series. We won’t be stuck with one ship or one space station as the center of the show.  We will follow different crews and different teams, perhaps as part of a larger, broad story arc, a la Game of Thrones,  or perhaps as a more self-contained “each season is different” approach, a la True Crime on HBO.

Very exciting, wouldn’t you say?  Very exciting indeed!

One final note, however.  The top brass at CBS has let it be known they won’t be making Star Trek easy to binge. They aren’t planning to release epi’s all at once, but more like once a week –  this is undoubtedly intended to maximize revenue from subscriptions, as all the Trekkers will subscribe on week one and keep their subscription until the season finale. 

A fair, if rather greedy strategy. 

However, if my analysis is correct and they are heading in the anthology direction, then the content doesn’t appear to be perfectly aligned to the revenue strategy.

They’d probably do better to weave in heavy serialization so that we MUST SUBSCRIBE. And they should also take pains to push the series very hard on the internet…   all those spoilers floating around will keep the Trekkers in line.

I feel like this content release strategy will wear thin, as Trekkers figure out work-arounds. But that may just be my contrary nature.

What do you think?  Please chime in with your own findings.