While Paramount Studios uses rumors as trial balloons in an effort to figure out what to do with "The Franchise," Eric Renderking Fisk debates that maybe what's needed is another dose of reality and really change the world.

Paramount Disenfranchised

Eric Renderking Fisk - April 27th, 2006   Bookmark and Share

The Parable of The Ship…

Imagine along with “The Gospel Of Judas,” someone found another lost book from the bible: The Parable of The Ship… a chronicle of Jesus Christ and the telling one of his stories using metaphors to illustrate a profound truth.

“Imagine in The future, a boat that has sailed a vast ocean and discovers a land where people have yet to hear The Word.” Christ begins. And he tells the story about how the sailors and the strangers in this new land are able to work out their differences and teach each other some things – not only about the world around them but about them selves. And the parable ends with the crew of the boat sailing off to another destination - sharing a light-hearted moment about the nature of humanity and our duality of being both spiritual beings while being flesh and blood.

After he tells this parable, he takes questions from the audience to see if they got the meaning of the parable.

“How fast does the ship go?”
“How far into the future is this adventure?”
“What does the ship look like?”
“What’s the combination of the safe in the Captain’s cabin?”
“Who built the ship?”
“What’s the complement of this ship? How many officers and crew?”
“What language did the strangers in another land speak?”
“What did they look like, did they all have funny ridges on their heads?”

… After Christ leaves in fustration, some of the people start drawing pictures of what the ship looks like, writing their own stories based on the characters in Christ’s parable, and have debates about what the strangers in the other land look like. Others invent their own make-believe language the strangers in the other land spoke and even began dressing and calling themselves the same name that Christ gave as those in the far-away land.

… And most of them spend most of their hard-earned money on action figures and play sets based on Christ’s parable.

Sound ridiculous? Impossible? Couldn’t happen? Think again. Star Trek was just supposed to be a Parable about the present and a means to discuss and explore issues that were current when it was first released and used a starship in the future as a metaphor about the world. Now look at what it's become...

The Second Annual "Star Trek Sucks Thanks To The Fans" Rant.

So I’m supposed to drop everything and write about the news about the leak from Paramount that they’re going to “reboot” the Star Trek franchise with the Eleventh movie? Or, at the very least about how they propose to do a series of movies about the early days of William Shatner’s character, “James T. Kirk” and his first meeting with Leonard Nemoy’s character, “Mr. Spock.” Or, I'm supposed to write rants on a weekly or maybe even daily basis on every new rumor and the consequential spin control when outraged fans protest and the earlier news is dispelled as false rumors?

Like I have nothing better to do. I was going to do a bit about how the only people who have a clear view about the nonsense about the Mohammed Cartoons are the guys from "South Park," I was also going to illustrate how  "Comedy Central" is run by scared hypocritical wimps. I still might do that, but I've been laying low in the Rant Department with other issues and projects such as maintaining the forum which has a great group of people contributing and working on my weekly re-cap of The Apprentice. (It's a great show that demonstrates how or if Traditional Values still have a place in the work-place in the 21st Century...)

If anything, this is just the perfect time to point to how our modern society focus too much time on the unreal while ignoring what is. That would just be too easy. My reactions to the new Trekkie rumors are pretty simple...

First: Read “Starfleet Academy? You've Got To Be Kidding!” "It's Not Dead, Jim and J.J. Abrams In, Jendresen/Berman Out In Star Trek XI - Paramount opts to go with 17-year-old story pitch"  and "Star Trek Needs To Hit The Real Reset Button" by Michael Hinman. He does a better job at covering this topic then I do. If I still gave a dam’n about Trek, I would hope that I could rant about this topic as well has he does. If I could get a way with it, I would just repost his whole opinion articles here and move on with my life. Just read those articles and forget I ever said anything or any more on these topics. (Don't forget Mr. Hinman's colleagues at SyFy Portal: “'Starfleet Academy' Just Doesn't Take Us Anywhere,Can J.J. Abrams Re-Invent The Wheel? Alan Stanley Blair talks about the "Starfleet Academy" project...)

Second: If you haven't guessed already, I don't have a fondness for Star Trek. It's not that I dislike the shows or movies themselves, not that I don't appreciate the hard work that's being done by the people behind the scenes and in front of the camera. Trek has been spoiled by sycophantic fans who insist that what we see on the TV or movie screen is an accurate depiction of what life will be like in the coming centuries. And if you read what some of these people say on some of the forum, they're trying to turn "The Fight against Trekkie Persecution" into something that's the equivalent to the civil rights movement of the 1960's, Women's rights of the 1920's and again in the 1970's or the debate about Homosexual Marriage now. I've also had enough of the "entitlement" aspect of many of the fans who believe that just because there have been something on every season since 1987, there should ALWAYS be something on.

Third: (As if you're really keeping count) the executives are yanking the fans chains and are using their reaction to gage if any of their new ideas would float. Trekkie bloggers and forum participants are being used, their own websites and bulletin boards are being used against them as marketing research tools by the suits at Paramount. News items are being leaked just to gage how the hard-core nuts react. The fake rumors with the best reactions will most likely become the next project that's green-lit. (Call it "Star Trek XI - This Movie Sucks" and effeminate and emasculated fans will line up around the block or camp in front of the box office for months or weeks as if they're in Mecca...)

I’m pretty clear on this, I think it’s pretty ridiculous for the people at Paramount to be focusing any attention on “Trek” when it’s been on a downward skid for the past 10 years – “Insurrection,” “Nemesis,” and the two series: “Voyager” and “Enterprise.” (You can argue about it’s ‘quality,’ but you can’t argue about the ratings and box-office receipts.)

Talking about doing anything so close after the end of “ENTERPRISE” and when the dust hasn’t settled from their latest round of Musical Executive Chairs is premature. I also think it’s pretty ignorant of them to just float rumors and see what sticks when appetites haven’t had enough time to build up. Trek-tards have been gorging themselves at the buffet table since 1987… a lot of them have become fat, stupid, lazy and believe just because it’s always been there for them then it always be there whether they’re watching or not... And insert the usual rant about how there’s a disproportion with their view of reality… since they’re more concerned about what’s going on in a Hollywood studio and less on what’s going on at the Launch Pad in Florida…

Since Paramount is now in the business of burning and throwing away money...

Paramount needs to focus more energy on different projects and franchises; just as a suggestion would be something more along the lines of “Sky Captain,” in an alternate past/history or another space adventure… like a show about space travel in 100 years outside of the Trekiverse. They’ll give Rick Berman and company a blank check to make junk for the past few years, but they won’t give up-and-comers like Kerry Conrad the same considerations after just one movie? To me that’s just stupid. Not only are they beating a dead horse, one part of the studio is trying to ride it while the other part is trying to place bets on it for the next race at the Santa Anita. They're beating a dead horse and trying to make it run while there are younger colts and stallions in the corral or waiting by the gait trying to get it. (Insert other horse racing analogies... most of them would fit here.)

In two months or so, you’ll read a rumor about Trek XI will be produced and directed by Peter Jackson from the script written by Erik Jendresen… or any other director that’s hot that week. Meanwhile there are plenty of people with great ideas that exist outside of the Trekivers and could blow it out of the water, rather space. If Paramount wants so desperately to waste capitol on something that just might never earn profits for them again... how about taking a better gambol and do something that hasn't been done before?

"The Social Commentary lessons to be learned by Watching Social-Rejects and Misfits.

All this is really just an example of how modern society is falling apart at the seams because of the government being out-of-touch with it’s constituency. (Trust me… I’m also working on a rant about the up-coming Mid-Term elections and why the Republicans might and should lose some seats.)

What I find amazing in an incredulous kind of way is that since I began this crusade against crazy Trek-fans a year ago there have been some amazing developments in the world of Astronomical Discoveries and Space Exploration. I don’t have to site the examples here, you can just visit pages line Space Daily and Space Ref and Universe Today (my favorite news stories have been topic-starters on The Fedora Chronicles forum…) While humanity is making huge strides in technology and new discoveries that make travel and exploration in space a reality, there are those people who insist that the fantasy about this topic is more important.

How can I be so sure that the “Star Trek” fantasy is more important to these crazy fans then the realities of space exploration, technology and Astronomical discoveries? It’s pretty simple – check out the forums. Less then 10 percent of the topics are about what’s really going on in the space program. Most of the topics about “what’s your favorite Voyager Character” or “How did you take the news that ENTERPRISE was canceled.” You talk the most about what you care about the most, obviously. The notion that there’s more to talk about in “Star Trek” then there is in the real world of Space Exploration is nothing more then a fiction created by mass-delusions.

It would a far more interesting world and the internet would be more practical if these people would actually try and figure out a way to make something like “Electro-magnetic propulsion” actually work. On The History Channel, William Shatner hosted a show called “How William Shatner Changed The World” which illustrated how only a few Trekkies or scientists were inspired by things featured on the original show and made them into things we use today in the real world.

 Imagine what would happen if the people who were obsessing about J.J. Abrams being the director of the next movie or the Jendresen script would pour the same amount of passion they have on talking about Science Fiction and go to work making it Science Reality?  

I admit to belonging to some of these forums because of the few members who contribute to those threads that fall under the “Science Fiction of Yesterday Becomes Science Fact Today” threads and the rare discussion about the accomplishments that are with in our grasp and what consequences may be in store for us when those things happen.

It would be interesting to have a discussion about what could really happen if we discovered other worlds like our own beyond our solar system and at the same time found a way to get there in reasonable amounts of time. But that’s not going to happen while people are too busy fighting about how to save a show that failed in the ratings while at the same time arguing the greatest debate of all time: “Captain Kirk: Boxers or Briefs?”

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