Through all of the noise surrounding Star Wars: The Force Awakens it can be hard to hear anything else in media at the moment. Indeed, you would probably find it hard to go from your house to a local shop without being assaulted multiple times by some form of advertising.
But there is an odd distraction for Sci-Fi fans wanting to engage with something other than the Force – Paramount just revealed that Star Trek Beyond is on the way, with the release of this trailer.
The trailer has already elicited some negative feedback already for is fast paced action not aligning with the classic, sociological focus of Gene Roddenberry’s series, but there is more here to be hopeful for than the bombastic 90 seconds of footage lets on. Which is why think there is a good chance that, ultimately, it is going to be better than The Force Awakens. Here is why.
1 – Simon Pegg
He’s lovely, British, adorable, and also a massive Star Trek fan who co-wrote this film. He has previously said he was not always happy with the action elements of the J.J. Abrahams reboot. Perhaps his pen on the script will have dialed these back, with the over-the-top action of the trailer taken from a few more dramatic scenes from the movie.
This could leave the bulk of the story to develop broader themes that the action could work in service of – rather than a as slave to. Certainly, a return to the deeper sociological plots seen in the original shows would be hard, but imagine if they drew on elements from episodes like Chain of Command… now that would be something.
2 – Bromance
If that isn’t the direction though, then there is another hope, and for doubters it will come from the oddest place – Justin Lin. Now, you probably had the same knee jerk reaction as me, “the director of the Fast and Furious franchise? This is awful – he is going to take Star Trek even further even down the mindless action path”.
But think, apart from cars, what is the Fast and Furious series known for… that’s right, camaraderie, and there is no greater bro-love triangle in history than Kirk, Spock, and Bones. Plus, this could place more emphasis on Karl Urban, which is always a good thing – especially when his McCoy is the most authentic thing in the new fiction.
3 – Not for kids, now need for 100s of action figures, it can stay with the crew and plot
Okay, none of that has addressed why this will beat The Force Awakens, but this will. Star Trek is not for kids. Sure, Paramount certainly want it to have wide appeal – but Star Trek has always been a franchise that people come to that little later in life, so it won’t have to pander or be tonally inconsistent just to appeal to kids.
This could also help to keep the story focused on just the key characters, without having to flitter around to give every new action figure their moment in the sun.
4 – The start of the five year mission, with actual exploration
Star Trek Beyond is the beginning of the five year mission that was the basis of the original TV show. It was a mission of exploration and discovery, but this crew has already encountered Klingons, genetically engineered humans, Romulans, and even – according to the terrible videogame – the Gorn.
Because of this it looks like they may have gone in the opposite direction, and are already discovering new races to make first contact with… and possibly be blown up by. It is true that the trailer makes it look like there is to be a lot of things exploding. Including the Enterprise. Again.
Even better, one of these races seems to include a villainous Idris Elba – possibly the guy above – which is always a good thing.
5 – The music is a call back, this maybe more thoughtful than a Guardians rip-off
Watch the trail, hear that music that makes you think that Justin Lin is just planning to rip off Guardians of the Galaxy? Well – while the use of a classic sound track could point to this in some ways -listen again, then watch the first new Star Trek movie again, this is James T. Kirks intro music.
That right, the first time we ever see Kirk as anything other than a baby – in this case as a tear away teen – this is the track he is listening to while he drives his stepfather’s car off a cliff. No, this doesn’t forgive using it, but it shows attention to this new fiction and proves that they are not just adding random tracks to make a more hard hitting trailer.
6 – Motorbikes
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