Star Trek Discovery, the new Star Trek series set to air exclusively as part of CBS’s “All Access” streaming service in the US and Netflix internationally (because CBS still insists on doing their own streaming while other networks let Netflix and Hulu do all the hard work for them), is rumored to be in so much trouble you have to wonder if the end result will even be a Star Trek series and if it will even be made. That last part may be an exaggeration but between creators who hate continuity, the CEO seems to hate Star Trek in the first place, and a lot of problems behind the scenes.
In this video from Midnight’s Edge, we get the latest on all the rumors, how Viacom messed up the licensing for Paramount, the part the fan film Axanar may have played in all this by violating the unspoken fan film rules (leading to harsher official rules), an upcoming parody series, and even Abrams desire to replace classic Star Trek continuity with his own (which kind of explains why he’s ignoring Lucas’s original concept for Star Wars 7 through 9) is tied to the the mess that Discovery appears to be.
At this point why are they even putting the Star Trek name on it if they’re ignoring both official continuities to do it? It really seems like the people involved are less interested in doing something based on the source material than the people who make Gotham. At least they’re only ignoring the timeline. Discovery just sounds nothing like Star Trek, even less so than Enterprise. That’s disappointing.
As far as the whole Axanar incident and the fan film rules, I’ve covered that in the past. Basically the rules are a bit too strict but I understand the problem, as Axanar crossed the line. Meanwhile Paramount’s attempt to monetize a retrospective possibly because it needs the money that bad is a jerk move. Someone worked hard on that and wasn’t making a profit, or was within the rights of fair use, for Paramount to mess that up. But Viacom being dumb enough not to keep the Star Trek license with Paramount when they split was a dumb idea, and may have kept a lot of this nonsense from happening.
It’s all jerk moves, really. Even Abrams trying to replace the classic Star Trek universe with his own not just in the movies but right down to the marketing wouldn’t fly. Unlike…say Battlestar Galactica the classic continuity of Star Trek has been going on for years in TV shows, movies, novels, comics, audio-only productions, and video games and is a huge part of American pop culture. The show inspired some of the gadgets and scientific theories we have today, and there’s too strong a fan base to thrown the old timeline aside since so little time has taken place between them. Fans were upset enough about the Kelvin timeline (the USS Kelvin is the ship Nero destroyed in the first Abrams movie, creating a splintered timeline) to let CBS ignore it, and I don’t think fans of either timeline are going to accept a new timeline that is pretending to be the main one while acting like the new one and doing things counter to both. Fans are not stupid. They argue this stuff to death and they’ll soon see it as a rejection of both of their continuities. If you don’t like the continuity, CREATE SOMETHING ELSE!
CBS will air the first episode on their network to promote the show like they have other All-Access exclusive series and I’ll most likely check it out. I have to tell you though that I’m not very confident that this will feel like I’m watching Star Trek. Could it be good? Maybe. But it won’t be Star Trek, which means I might enjoy it had they just made an original IP.