‘Star Trek’: The Lack of Khan


When I heard the news a few years ago that a new version of “Star Trek” was coming out, I was a little skeptical. For starters, the recent wave of remakes on the large and small screens had, for the most part, been poorly done. The comic book movie wave produced vehicles for young, and mostly untalented, actors, and I won’t get into CGI crimes committed by George Lucas or the abuse of explosions by Michael Bay. I doubted J.J Abrams heavily.

Sure, he did “Alias,” a show that had promise until it was written off the rails. I watched a few episodes of “Lost,” but lost interest when I saw the magical island equipped with a weapons cache, a cloaking device and a time machine. When I heard he was running “Star Trek” and that it was a reboot, I said “Great, yet another time travel movie. Can he do anything else?” In fact, the only reason why I gave him half a chance was because he brought in Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, two writers I’d known and relatively trusted since the days of “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys.”

Needless to say, all of my worries were unfounded. “Star Trek” was the breath of fresh air the franchise needed. Abrams hit all the right notes to make Trekkies squee. The cast was spot on, though I’m still not a fan of that Spock-Uhura thing. The new Enterprise was sexy, even with the curved nacelle pylons. CGI was used properly (I loved the camera glare to make it feel more “real”), and explosions were kept to their logical places. For the time being, Gene Roddenberry’s legacy was safe, and a sequel was guaranteed. Problem was, I had heard more than a few rumors that Khan would be making a comeback. Big mistake, if this happens.

First of all, “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan” is the end all be all for modern sci-fi (I don’t care what George Lucas or Jimmy Cameron says). It was the first movie ever to have a completely CGI scene, namely the Genesis effect (it should be noted that the group who created this effect would later branch off Lucasfilms to form Pixar). And unlike Lucas’ intended set of three, Wrath of Khan began an UNINTENDED trilogy. Kirstie Alley got her major start as an actress here, and James Horner broke through with a BRILLIANT score, setting himself up for life. All of this for $5 and a waffle ($11 million in 1981 compared to Star Trek: The Motion Picture for $45 MILLION IN 1978). The act of rebooting it in and of itself is sacrilege.

Secondly, Ricardo Montalban is dead, as are DeForest Kelley, James Doohan, Merritt Butrick and Bibi Besch. Don’t disgrace their memories by risking a half-assed remake. Third, Chris Pine is good, but no one other than Bill Shatner himself should be allowed to scream “KHAAAAAAAAN!” ever again, nor should any man other than Ricardo Montalban, rest his soul, ever say: “He asks me, and I shall have him”; “Buried alive!”; or “Full power, damn you!” Fourth, as much as I hate the show “Heroes” and would love to see a scene where Zachary Quinto dies, having Spock die twice is unoriginal.

And there’s the moral of the story kiddies, the Titanic effect: movies are a lot less appealing the second time around.

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5 Comments Add Yours ↓

  1. 1

    i really doubt they will do khan for sequel. i am gunning for kligons myself, or maybe some other bad guys. or heck even a new race would be cool;.

  2. 2

    Good post.

    I’d be OK if they did Khan. It’s JJ’s version now. For the record, the line is: “He tasks me! He tasks me, and I shall have him! I’ll chase him round the Moons of Nibia, and round the Antares Maelstrom, and round perdition’s flames before I give him up! Prepare to alter course!”

    It’s one of my favorite lines ever. I had just that year read ‘Moby Dick’ for class and it alluded to the Melville line: “He tasks me; he heaps me […] Aye, aye! and I’ll chase him round Good Hope, and round the Horn, and round the Norway Maelstrom, and round perdition’s flames before I give him up.” Great line and great delivery by Ricardo Montalban.

    Something tells me they’ll go in another direction than the Eugenics/Khan story, at least for now.

  3. 3

    Realized I went Start Trek, Correct-y fan boy there. 🙂 Apologizes. Klingons or a new race would be cool. They just have to make him/her/it as complex and menacing and as good a balance for Kirk as Khan was.

  4. Rob #

    I know I’m in the minority, but I don’t necessarily mind a return by Khan, provided Abrams and team do something unique with the character. Namely, I think it might be intriguing to see Khan become a protagonist–not necessarily Kirk’s buddy, but someone with whom Kirk’s forced to work closely to attain some common goal, thereby forming a grudging–if still adversarial–respect. Their relationship might later begin to deteriorate into the one we’re more familiar with. Seems to me, with the new timeline, that the sky’s the limit, so to speak. In any case, I’ve read that, if they do decide to go with Khan, they’re considering Nestor Carbonell for the role. Personally, I find .that an intriguing choice

  5. annielicious14 #

    tee hee Nice post!

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