Pandemic Lockdown Theater: Winter Star Trek Edition

By Stuart Moore

[ Editor’s note: this got lost in my intent of year newspapers, but it’s too good not to publish .]

Growing up in the 1970 s, we disliked the 1970 s. Everyone and everything, from the news media to our older friends and siblings, told us we should. Premiums were soaring; oil became so scarce you had to wait in lines at gas stations. Important beings informed us that the age of American prosperity was over–from now on, things were going to be hard. And the hippies called us greedy, shirks. We’d missed it all: both the good life and the good fight.

Pop culture wasn’t doing much better. By the late 60 s animation was mostly a lost art , not to be rediscovered for two decades. Comic records were obviously fated; engraving go blurry and page tallies cringed as the prices continued to increase. TV was worse than ever, recorded on cheaper and cheaper film with duller and duller scripts. Film was briefly a light place, but by 1979, the maverick administrators of the 70 s had managed to vanish up their own assholes, corkscrew their way out again, and hide themselves in the biggest pile of cocaine the world had ever seen.

That’s when Star Trek: The Motion Picture came out.

TMP regards the separation of being the only piece of Trek filmed during the 1970 s. It presents in many ways: the waste, the egoes on procession, the endless drab swathes of beige, tan, beige. I was young enough to adoration the cinema on first view. I rewatched it this anniversary season, fully conscious of its mistakes, and experienced the hell out of it. I recommend( a) exercising earbuds to get the full the consequences of the lush Jerry Goldsmith score and( b) watching in ten-minute delays to preclude drowsiness.

Look at all the beige in Star Trek: The Motion Picture

I charged straight on into Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, which has a soft spot in my center, as it does for a lot of people. I first attended it in one of those age-old Times Square theaters with my college sweetheart Lisa. We took the train into NYC for a mid-finals-period getaway, probably on opening day. I determined the movie very emotional and altering, on the cusp as I was of beginning my adult life.

After the movie, they handed out explain posters. One of the questions predict “Why did you come to this film? ” I wrote down “Old loyalties.” I recollect Lisa saying, of the stage at the end where Kirk says he feels young: “I didn’t really belief him. But I knew what he meant.”

New York stuck with me; Lisa didn’t. That’s the channel things extend. The 1980 s were already underway, that cold button-down decade when the right wing rose up and spread its backstages over Mordor. In New York, magnates became inhuman divinities and diary publishing knew a brief moment of immortality. I skated on the outside of that, poverty-stricken and remote from the centers of power.

The Moral Majority took over the Republican Party; the news media grew most conservative, a change that wouldn’t be arrested–let alone reversed–until the obviou crimes of Donald Trump. Greed, we were told, was good, and hippies were objectives of sneer. Democrats mumbled and smirked, hiding in their gaps and focusing on the arts.

Looking back, the 1970 s didn’t seem so bad.

With Hulu as my temptress, I flirted with Star Trek III: The Search for Spock but gave up after ten minutes. Maybe I was too lost in the glowing of a particular era, and didn’t feel like reliving that sinister next chapter. Maybe I didn’t want to watch the cinemas deteriorate. Maybe I just wanted Captain Kirk to stay young, or sort of young, or at least young in that one little instant where reference is gazed at a newborn planet glistening on the screen.

Old loyalties.

-Stuart Moore

December 2020

Inspired by Denny O’Neil’s Trekkie( 1982, Epic Illustrated ). RIP

( c) 2020 Stuart Moore

Spock's death in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

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