Memo to Vince Horiuchi: New Star Trek is a Good Thing

Hoooorrrriiiiuchi! You SOB!
Hoooorrrriiiiuchi! You SOB!

To: Vince Horiuchi, Salt Lake Tribune’s Resident “Village Vidiot”

From: Andy Morgan, Inventor of Awesome

Subject: Set Phasers to Dumb for Trek

Vince, Vince, Vince. Sigh. Remember when you wrote this in the Salt Lake Tribune last Monday, November 16th?

Director J.J. Abrams goes where no Trekkie has gone before by “re-imagining” the classic 1960s series Star Trek as a bombastic, action-packed, Star Wars-esque — and ultimately dumbed-down — movie that is anything but true Trek. The original crew of the Enterprise is re-cast with Melrose Place-like young hunks and hotties, and the action is ramped up for new audiences. What it lacks is the flavor, spirit, intelligence and character bonding of the original series. Newcomers will appreciate the glossy style, but diehard original series fans will cringe at the deliberate breakaway from the classic canon to create the movie’s own set of rules (through a time-travel storyline that obliterates the original series’ timeline). Beam me up Scotty, there’s no intelligent life here.

We need to have a chat, Vince. See, I watched J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek again over the weekend and you’re dead wrong with your assessment of the film as “dumbed-down.” From the first to the last frame, Abrams has fashioned a sleek, stylized, up-tempo Trek that is far and above the best thing Kirk, Spock, McCoy, Scotty and The Enterprise have seen since The Wrath of Khan in 1982. I mean, let’s be frank – are you telling me the The Undiscovered Country is an edge-of-your-seat, smart space epic? I don’t think so, unless you’re wearing a pocket protector and got married while dressed as a Klingon.

You see, Vince, it seems to me the only people with ruffled feathers over Abrams’ “re-imagining” are the Trek nerds. And you know what? I don’t get it. I can count on one hand Trek films that didn’t put me to sleep: the aforementioned Khan, The Voyage Home and First Contact, which is when Picard and his jazzed up crew took over for the decrepit Shatner and Co. And don’t talk to me about canon and pull out some Star Trek bible. Guess what? The series was canceled after the third season, and for good reason – it was boring.

Thank the Lord J.J. Abrams didn’t go with “true Trek” for this splendid restart of a boring franchise that had, for some befuddling reason, survived three decades of second-class motion pictures. If anything, the $257 million Star Trek raked in at the domestic box office can’t be wrong, especially when the closest any of the other Trek films has come to the century mark in millions is The Voyage Home with $109 million.

Bottom line, Vince: Star Trek has jettisoned its nerdness and is now smart, sexy and robust. I can’t wait for the sequel.

13 comments On Memo to Vince Horiuchi: New Star Trek is a Good Thing

  • I agree Andy.

    But you dont have to use figures at the box office to solidify your arguement with this tool.

    We all know that the shittiest of movies do well at the box office(tween vampires anyone?)which reminds me of how retarded people are for movies, myself included.

    Im sure we all have a few of “those movies” that we might not be so proud of when company is over and eyeing our dvd collection.

    But yeah..the latest Star Trek was awesome.

  • Vince has a point in that this Trek, from a Trekkie/Trekker/whateverthehellthey’recallingthemselvesthesedays standpoint, was “dumbed down” from the pointy-headed premise of days gone by. Unquestionably, the new Trek was turned into a more “Star Wars-ian” adventure– which made it fantastic, fun and totally enjoyable in every respect. Incidentally, that was the whole point of the reboot– to widen the audience beyond the Trek convention crowd, not to pay them the same boring lip service.

    And guess what? It worked.

    I’m more than happy to have a world that’s jumped on board the “sci-fi” bandwagon thanks to this reboot– IE- that sci-fi can be fun and accessible again. But if Vince and his ilk are looking for “science” and “cultural examinations”, I think they’ll find some of that moving forward, but it doesn’t have to be boring.

    Face it Vince, your Star Trek was dead in the water and in the throes of massive diminishing returns.And if boring’s your bag, you’ve got a huge canon of Star Trek from the last 40 years to wipe to your tears with.

    Star Trek’s moved on. The Star Trek sackcloth and ashes crowd should do the same.

  • I use to watch the original series and TNG with my grammy and never liked it-at ALL. SO I had no interest in seeing this new “re-boot”…until I saw the previews. Then I thought-ok looks like it might be cool, I’ll take my lil nephew. I will tell you this-from the opening musical notes (notice no rolling credits THANK GOODNESS! How can we get immersed in a starship with “CHRIS PINE and DIRECTED BY JJ ABRAMS scrolling along the bottom?” Answer-YOU CANT.) until the very last frame I was sitting in the theatre with my jaw on the floor! This is now literally my TOP Sci Fi movie of all time! I ran right out on 11/16 and bought the double DVD-Cant WAIT til Star Trek 2 comes out! And yes it is Star Trek 2-I think we ALL want to forget the other ones (minus Kahn RIP Maltoban)

  • Ugh. Horiuchi bothers me to no end.

    I *was* one of the nerds who loved all of the series of Star Trek, including all the movies.

    This film blew me away, and I loved every second of it.

  • I agree with everything he said in that passage you quoted. It’s true.

    The film is really bad.

  • What’s your basis for that Justin? Are you a big fan of the old Trek films, or did you just not like the movie? Again, to each his own, but I don’t see how this new Star Trek is missing “flavor, spirit, intelligence and character bonding.”

  • I also thought Vince was spot on in his review. For someone who loved all the previous Treks, this was a disgrace of a film. As I’ve said before, it might be a good movie, but it’s a bad Star Trek movie, in fact, it’s not Star Trek. You can poo poo that statement all you want, but the reality is, from a respect to Star Trek standpoint, I’d have preferred this movie be called something totally different and not be an attempt at re-imagining the Trek universe.

    And, for the record, Star Trek is far more than the movies and three seasons of the original series. There were seven seasons of TNG, seven seasons of DS9, seven seasons of VOY and five seasons of ENT, along with the animated series and countless books. They are all Star Trek. This piece of shit that a time travel crutch using hack like J.J. Abrams put out is something else. Go ahead and enjoy whatever crap he puts out as a sequel, but it is not Star Trek, Gene Roddenberry is rolling in his grave.

  • That’s fine. We don’t have to call it a “Star Trek” movie, because, I suppose, you’re right. The previous Star Trek movies, with the exception of maybe – MAYBE – three, are boring as hell. Same with the countless Trek TV spin-offs. So with that line of thinking I suppose what Abrams has done is taken the Trek name and characters and polished it into a kick ass experience for the 99.4 percent of the population who aren’t Trek nerds. Perhaps Horiuchi’s review would have been better couched had he said he sucks the sack of the old movies and TV shows, then a little objectivity could be added to his statements.

  • I guess the film was made for guys like me cause i am in no way a star trek fan and i enjoyed it much.

    Could you enlighten this star trek nub on just why Gene Roddenberry would be upset with this new film?

    You feel it was a disgrace of a film and a piece of shit but i saw alot of heart and paying homage to the series with no mockery in this film, what am i missing Tyler?
    I can see that the focus on so much action throughout may not be what star trek is all about, what would have you rather seen?

    What is it that upset the true trekkers so deeply?

  • The action was good and wasn’t the problem.

    First, to Andy, until you’ve seen the TV series, especially the season-long story arcs and cliffhangers and battles in Deep Space 9, you shouldn’t call it boring.

    Next, Danny, the biggest thing for me was that a central theme to MANY (20+) Star Trek stories over the years was DON’T EFF UP THE TIMELINE. Then J.J. just goes back and blows up the planet Vulcan (a critical planet in Trek lore, and he does it using some bullshit method of “red matter?”)

    I’m not saying it was bad to update the story and make it appealing to more people, but you have to have some respect for the source material, and I really feel that there were many things that were disrespectful in the remake, almost to the point of pissing on Roddenberry’s grave for the sake of making a few bucks.

  • As a disclaimer, I unabashedly love this new Trek movie. BUT, I’ve also seen the TV series (recorded it on VCR back in the day, even) and enjoyed [some of] them for what they were, but I recall a contingent of Trek fans saying DS9 pissed all over Rodenberry’s grave as well. There’s a reason producer Rick Berman isn’t in control of the Trek franchise any longer– it became stale.

    To move forward with freedom, the new movie HAD to eff up the timeline. That was the point. The timeline had become too burdensome.

    JJ Abrams gave Trek a shot in the arm and while decisions he made with writers Orci and Kurtzman may not be to 100% Trekkies liking, it’s single-handedly reinvigorated a franchise that was suffering a slow and embarrassing death for the sake of its core fanbase. I’d also argue they did it with total respect for the source material using that lame–and oft-used– time travel crutch. In fact, the whole film was an attempt to preserve existing Star Trek canon while setting up new adventures. Star Trek II (or XI), will be the one to nail for “lack of intelligence”.

    In the end, all the previous Star Trek lore is still there. Change is good.

  • I post this question to all who did not like the new movie-would you rather have the franchise live on and be liked and respected by most (of course not all) and also have it liked by new Trek fans, or would it have been better to have left it alone and had everyone’s last memories of it be terrible movies? I mean, I chose the first…I mean I took my 7 year old daughter to it and she loved it! So I started watching with my gram when I was little and now a new generation is loving it…

  • I'm a major Trek fan and I thoroughly enjoyed the movie. It's been years since anything new has come out in Star Trek, and after the massive disappointment that was Nemesis, it's definitely nice to see a successful reboot of the Trek-verse.

    The biggest problem most of fellow Trek-nerds seem to be voicing is the alternate timeline and subsequent obliteration of decades of canon. I, however, agree with what Dan said. By using the alternate timeline scenario, he preserved beloved canon for die-hard fans of the old Trek while creating an entirely new range of possibilities for newcomers who would not have appreciated getting bogged down with all the history.

Comments are closed.

Site Footer

Sliding Sidebar