Khan, failed savior: A better alternate history

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KhanMust be all these hours snow-bound in front of my computer… maybe the sub-zero cold is starting to freeze some (some?) of my brain cells… but it occurred to me the other day that Khan Noonian Singh must have been railroaded.  (And so were we.)

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Star Trek’s Federation history includes, among many other things, the fact that Earth had a World War III, and later, a Eugenics War, the combination of which tore Terran countries and societies apart.  It was from this series of disasters that Earth’s leaders finally started working together on a platform of mutual trust and cooperation, rebuilding the first truly global society.  This society eventually came to provide a universal living wage, food and housing for all, worldwide access to medicine, education and opportunities to do what they wanted beyond basic subsistence.

We also know, from the Star Trek Original Series episode “Space Seed,” that Khan and his followers were part of a group of genetically-engineered superior humans who tried, in Khan’s own words, to “give the world order.”  He and his people were soundly defeated in the Eugenics Wars and forced to flee Earth to escape prosecution.

But I now believe there’s more to the story than that… and a hint as to how Star Trek Into Daftness could have actually become a great movie. Continue reading

100 best Star Trek episodes, ranked

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Star_Trek_The_Doomsday_MachineIO9 recently asked its readers for their contributions to the list of best 100 episodes of the Star Trek television franchise (the Original Series, The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, Voyager, Enterprise and the Animated Series).  I contributed to this list, and both of my suggestions (Voyager’s Memorial and the Original Series’ The Doomsday Machine) made the list.

Shoulda been higher ranked, though.  Just sayin’.  (And this documentary on The Doomsday Machine proves it.)

My list of the greatest SF moments in TV and cinema

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enterprise_in_drydock_600Lists.  We love ’em, we make ’em, we argue over ’em, we share ’em.  And every now and then, we see a list that just demands that we respond with: “That’s a nice list; but here’s what it should have had…”

A recent list (on The Observation Deck) of the greatest science fiction moments that made you “weep for joy” made me think of SF’s greatest visual moments from my memory, and I realized that my list couldn’t include just F@&# YEAH! moments, but heartbreaking moments as well.  After all, SF’s greatest trait is its ability to make you rethink your world, and that doesn’t just come from cool explosions.

So, without further ado, and in no particular order, is my list of the greatest SF (visual) moments of TV and cinema, and how they impacted me. Continue reading