Deputy Editor at Upworthy. Currently of Baltimore, formerly of NYC and Pittsburgh. Nerd. Feminist. Comedy fan. TV enthusiast. Ally. Fangirl. Hoping to make the world a better place by blogging in my pajamas.
“Star Trek was an attempt to say that humanity will reach maturity and wisdom on the day that it begins not just to tolerate, but take a special delight in differences in ideas and differences in life forms. […] If we cannot learn to actually enjoy those small differences, to take a positive delight in those small differences between our own kind, here on this planet, then we do not deserve to go out into space and meet the diversity that is almost certainly out there.”
"Then, too, it might be well to unify the team of Kirk and Spock a bit, by having them actively meet various menaces together with one saving the life of the other on occasion. The idea of this would be to get people to think of Kirk when they think of Spock."
Isaac Asimov in a letter of advice to Gene Roddenberry on how to get audiences to focus on Kirk AND Spock instead of just on Spock who was considered a “fad-character” (albeit a wonderful one) who brought in the “teenage vote”.
Seriously just read the whole thing, it’s fantastic.
"The network told me to get rid of Number One, the woman first lieutenant, and also get rid of ‘that Martian fellow’… meaning, of course, Spock. I knew I couldn’t keep both, so I gave the stoicism of the female officer to Spock, and married the actress who played Number One. Thank God it wasn’t the other way around. I mean Leonard’s cute, but…"
"I definitely designed it as a love relationship…That was the relationship I tried to draw. I think I also tried to draw a feeling of belief that very few of us are complete unto ourselves. It’s quite a lovely thing…where two halves make a whole."
Gene Roddenberry, about Kirk and Spock’s relationship, in Star Trek Lives!
It boggles my mind how avid fans can watch Star Trek: The Original Series and not acknowledge the very obvious flirting and sexual tension between two very important, very male characters in the show. It is ridiculously stupid how the blatant eyesex and sultry purrs exchanged between the two…
For the starship captain’s log entry narrations, Roddenberry wanted to devise a futuristic measurement of time reference. He called (Sam) Peeples (whom Roddenberry had contacted early on for help in learning about science fiction, a subject he knew nothing about; it was Peeples who wrote “Where No Man Has Gone Before,” the pilot that sold ST). The two men had a few drinks while brainstorming, and soon began chuckling over their imaginative ‘stardate’ computations. ‘We tried to set up a system that would be unidentified unless you knew how we did it,’ Peeples says.
“They marked off sections on a pictorial depiction of the known universe and extrapolated how much earth time would elapse when traveling between given points, taking into account that the Enterprise’s warp engines would be violating Einstein’s theory that nothing could exceed the speed of light. They concluded that the ‘time continuum’ would therefore vary from place to place, and that earth time may actually be lost in travel. ‘So the stardate on Earth would be one thing, but the stardate on Alpha Centauri would be different,’ Peeples says. ‘We thought this was hilarious, because everyone would say, “How come this date is before that date when this show is after that show?” The answer was because you were in a different sector of the universe.’
"Star Trek lives because there are a lot of people who respect good science fiction."
Jump to 2:20 for Isaac Asimov’s thoughts on Star Trek, and to 3:50 for D.C. Fontana’s thoughts on how writing a show set in the future allowed her to comment on current events. Jump to 5:30 for Leonard Nimo—oh, just watch the whole bloody thing. It’s brilliant.
Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry, Nichols says King told her, was showing the nation a universe where “‘for the first time, we [African-Americans] are being seen the world over…as we should be seen’.” And “‘you have created a character’” that is critical to that, he said.
King also told her that “‘this is the only show that my wife Coretta and I will allow our little children to stay up and watch.’”
"I was … speechless," Nichols says.
She decided to stay on the show. The Lt. Uhura character, as Michel Martin attests, became an icon — inspiring young black kids, especially girls. When Uhura and Captain Kirk (who, as you probably know, was played by the white actor William Shatner) kissed in the Plato’s Stepchildren episode, a racial barrier was broken.