Pandemic Lockdown Theater: Winter Star Trek Edition

By Stuart Moore

[ Editor’s note: this got lost in my purpose of year papers, 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. Tolls were skyrocketing; lubricant became so scarce you had to wait in lines at service station. Important people informed us that the age of American prosperity was over–from now on, things were going to be hard. And the hippies announced us greedy, slackers. We’d missed everything there is: 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 books were obviously fated; reproducing come misty and sheet countings reduced as the prices continued to increase. TV was worse than ever, recorded on cheaper and cheaper film with duller and duller dialogues. Film was briefly a radiant distinguish, but by 1979, the maverick directors of the 70 s had managed to vanish up their own assholes, corkscrew their way out again, and immerse themselves in the biggest pile of cocaine the world had ever seen.

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

TMP hampers the discrimination of being the only piece of Trek filmed during the course of its 1970 s. It testifies in many ways: the waste, the self-love on parade, the endless drab swathes of tan, tan, tan. I was young enough to love the cinema on first regard. I rewatched it this holiday season, perfectly conscious of its flaws, and enjoyed the blaze out of it. I recommend( a) using earbuds to get the full the consequences of the luxuriant Jerry Goldsmith score and( b) watching in ten-minute times to foresee drowsiness.

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

I accused straight on into Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, which has a soft spot in my nature, as it does for a lot of people. I first looked it in one of those age-old Times Square theaters with my college lover Lisa. We took the train into NYC for a mid-finals-period getaway, probably on opening address. I noticed the cinema very emotional and changing, on the cusp as I was of beginning my adult life.

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

New York stuck with me; Lisa didn’t. That’s the way things proceed. The 1980 s were already underway, that freezing button-down decade when the right wing rose up and spread its wings over Mordor. In New York, financiers became grievou idols and bible publishing suffered a brief moment of glory. I skated on the outside of that, poverty-stricken and distant from the centers of power.

The Moral Majority made over the Republican Party; the news media changed more conservative, a switching that wouldn’t be arrested–let alone reversed–until the shameles crimes of Donald Trump. Greed, we were told, was good, and hippies were objectives of ridicule. Democrats rumbled and smirked, hiding in their punctures 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 feeling of a particular era, and didn’t feel like reliving that shocking following 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 when he looked at a newborn planet reflecting 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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