Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Differences Between Star Wars and Star Trek

Over the years, the subject and debates of Star Wars and Star Trek is never-ending. Especially because George Lucas keeps on releasing infinite versions of the Star Wars movies while Star Trek is into producing new movies. The most current Star Trek, directed by J.J. Abrams two years ago ranks 213 on the all-time greatest movie list on while Star Wars ranks 17. But that was the version released in 1977. The newer Star Wars sagas Episodes 1-3 don't even rank in the top 250. That's right. They sucked hairy & sweaty donkey [guess what word goes here]. Jar-Jar Binks didn't even receive an Oscar nod!

I've noticed that Star Trek fans have a tendency to enjoy character development more than lasers. Star Wars certainly had it's share of 2 dimensional characters to support the rest of the 1 dimensional character cast. But, as Star Wars is about slicing someone up with a light-saber every five minutes, Star Trek relies on more conventional, and some would say boring use of traditional 3 dimensional characters.

Star Trek fans also tend to realize that beyond being beamed up, and raising shields, Star Trek, always tries to use it's platform as a social commentary on our current society.

Example: Kirk once says, "Death, destruction, that's what war is all about. That's what makes it a thing to be avoided. You've made everything so neat and tidy, you've had no reason to stop it." Obi-Won's best quote would probably be "Luke, use the force."

For the older crowd, you may remember Star Trek TOS (The Original Series), had the first inter-racial kiss on national television between Kirk and Urhura, both humans. This episode was blacked out in most all of the South as being too racy. The kissing in Star Wars was perhaps inter-racial, such as Ewoks grinding on slutty Wookies.

From the 10,000 foot view, Star Wars resembles the individual battles of the American Civil War, while Star Trek resembles, the causes, costs, and reasons, behind all of the events that culminated in bloody battles.

I understand that it's nice to have a movie provide mind-numbing CGI, with easy plot lines, and easier characters, I'm looking at you Princess Leia. But, there is something refreshing about a premise that does not sport supernatural powers to achieve it's missions, but actual future humanistic technology, that we can all agree is all theoretically possible. We've seem through the years as our own current technologies evolve great similarities between Star Trek's visions and today's reality. Today we have cell phones (Star Trek communicators). We've developed computer assisted seeing for the blind (Geordi's visor), and androids (Mr. Data) like Honda's Asimo. All these ideas were first spawned on Star Trek.

Ok, so C3P0 and R2D2 were around before Mr. Data. But if you go back to Star Trek TOS, you'll notice a plethora of episodes with android beings that Kirk forces to self-destruct through his eloquent logic word games. Remember Nomad?

I'd really like to see a counter argument to my slant on the Star Wars/Star Trek rivalry. Please comment on how I didn't bash Star Wars nearly enough. 


1 comment:

  1. You'll probably appreciate yesterday's Penny Arcade strip/blog:


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