The Big Divisive Question, Part Two

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You know...I like both, where is it written that you can't like both?

Star Trek didn't get good until the 2009 movie.

Yes, I said it.

I'm totally a Trekkie, but I'm also pretty old. I loved Star Wars, too. But Trek has always been there for me. I'm not so sure my love of Trek is all that complicated. It could be as simple as the fact that Trek came first. :)

Hmmmm, a mighty fine pondering point there. A lot of people like to compare Star Trek to Star wars for some reason. The only one I can find is that they both have Star in the name and are set in space. To be honest that's the only thing tying these 2 together. By that logic we should start arguing over whether American Pie is better than American Beauty...

Both good, both different. You don't watch Star Trek for a thrilling journey of action-packed mythology just as you don't watch Star Wars for the intriguing social analysis, scientific possibilities and character led drama.

I like's both, but Star Trek is deeper (in my opinion) because of the huge range of characters and the variety of situations we see them in. You get to know them a lot better. Didn't like DS9 though. Got kinda dull, like when the X-Files started paying too much attention to the 'government conspiracy' and not enough on the freaky shizzle that turns people into spooge and such.

Treks main problem is that it feeds itself on tropes. It's one of the Tropiest Trope of all time.

Oh? Have you seen this page?

OT: I think Star Trek wins over Star Wars for me, narrowly.
It's not hard Sci-fi in any way, shape or form, and some of it is far worse compared to the rest, yes I'm looking at you Enterprise.


Nah jk, love em all but Wars is definatly my fav.

I like both Star Wars and Star Trek (well, TNG anyway). So there.

I grew up watching ONLY A New Hope and it turned me into a Star Wars fan. However, I grew up also watching Geordie on TNG and Reading Rainbow, which turned me into a fan of Star Trek. I prefer Star Wars out of the two, but I love both series for different reasons.

An interesting pair of articles.

A more in-depth discussion of the Prime Directive can be found here:

I like both ST & SW. They're like different flavoured Sci-Fi pies. The WH40k pie is strangely addictive and repulsive.

TOS and the films started it all (and the great GR), but in the final analysis (for me anyway) its TNG that brought the interest. The topics and themes they explored I'm sure had some positive effect on me. And I love all those little character traits like Picard straighting his uniform or the way Riker tilts his head as he walks around or Datas little eye/head ticking back and forth while computating. I have no shame in admitting that I balled my eyes out in '94 at the end of All Good Things... it was like losing a family.

Favourite Series in order:
1. TNG
2. DS9
3. TOS

Favourite Episode from TNG: Inner Light

Season favourites:
1 - The Neutral Zone
2 - Elementary Dear Data, A Matter of Honor, Q Who
3 - Evolution, The Survivors, The Defector, The Hunted, The Hight Ground, Deja Q, A Matter of Perspective, Yesterday's Enterprise, The Best of Both Worlds pt 1
4 - The Best of Both Worlds pt, Remember Me, Future Imperfect, The wounded, The Mind's Eye, Redemptions pt 1
5 - Redemptions pt 2, Darmok, Disaster, Unification pt 1 & 2, Conundrum, Cause & Effect, I Borg, Times Arrow pt 1
6 - Times Arrow pt 2, Relics, Schisms, Rascals, A Fistful of Datas, Chain of Command pt 1 & 2, Face of the Enemy, Starship Mine, The Chase, Frame of Mind, Timescape, Descent pt 1
7 - Descent pt 2, Liasons, Gambit pt 1, Gambit pt 2, Force of Nature, Parallels, The Pegasus, Lower Decks, Genesis, Journey's End, Firstborn, Preemptive Strike, All Good Things pt 1 & 2

I still think the inherent appeal is still more of a hearkening for the unknown. The hope that there is some place out there where, if you are sufficiently brave/talented/lucky you could make a difference.

This is, I think what is missing in our society lately - and might help explain the popularity of games like WoW or even Fallout 3. We have not had a new frontier for a long, long time and I think that this to a great extent is what we want so much.

The appeal for me with both of these franchises is that hope, that "what is around the next corner". The basic feeling that drove columbus across the ocean (pursuit of riches, desire to explore).


Just thought I'd mention that Star Trek didn't feature the first scripted kiss on TV, just American TV.

Four years earlier British medical drama "Emergency Ward 10" had features a full interracial relationship between two doctors.

Also the first kiss on American TV period was between Nancy Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr. However it was unscripted and the result of a plan by Sinatra and Davis.

I'd like to think that being a fan of a television or movie series doesn't define who you are as a human any more than the colour of your eyes. I can't stomach this sort of psychoanalysis.

So heres a Star Wars and Star Trek conundrum i would like to tell.

If a Red Shirt in Star Trek always dies on a mission.
And a Storm Trooper from Star Wars can never hit anyone with their blasters

What happens when you put the Red Shirt and a Storm Trooper in a cage and have them fight it out?


The Stormtrooper misses the Red Shirt, hits a reflective surface and kills himself. The Red Shirt, overjoyed by this, jumps up and down in celebration. However the floor is slippy from the blood of the last combatants, and he falls over and cracks his head off the floor. Double wipeout.

The poroblem with Star Trek vs Star Wars argument is that you are arguing over ultimately fantasy vs sci fi. Star Trek is a Science Fiction 'story' and Star Wars is a fantasy story. Science fiction is usually more focused on the plausible, while fantasy usually focuses on character interaction.

My point being your not comparing apples and apples here. You are comparing an apple and an orange.

I used to really love TNG when I was growing up. Then, after it ended, I left Trek for while. When I came back, I realized just how adolescent it was. Moral issues were handled with great fists of ham. Technobable often replaced adequate plotting. Entire alien races were created by taking a sterotype and mass producing it. There's still some good writing here and there, but I've left the franchise behind and haven't felt the desire to look back.

Starwars, meanwhile, has never been more than a series of popcorn action films to me, save for one entry: KOTOR. Bioware did more with the series than I've seen anyone else do.

Right now, I am solidily in the 40k camp. The Horus Heresy novels are really good, more Greek tragedy than space opera.

Well... damn that sounds about right.

I find myself incredibly accepting and all that stuff about realising mine is not the one true culture.

I often berate people endlessly who think their way of life is better than others >.> the close minded ingrates.

"What does it mean if you prefer Star Trek to Star Wars?"

It means you are insane.

So heres a Star Wars and Star Trek conundrum i would like to tell.

If a Red Shirt in Star Trek always dies on a mission.
And a Storm Trooper from Star Wars can never hit anyone with their blasters

What happens when you put the Red Shirt and a Storm Trooper in a cage and have them fight it out?


Nah, you have it slightly wrong. A stormtrooper can't hit anyone -important- with their blasters. They're plenty good against everyone else (See: the beginning of A New Hope). Your Red Shirt doesn't stand a chance.

Personally, I am more a Star Trek man than a Star Wars man. However, I prefer Star Wars for the Jedi/Sith conflicting, and Star Trek for the introspection of a possible future of our humanity.

I would have to say it is a 60/40 split for me, in the end.



leave Porkin's alone, Piggy never did now't to no-one!



Interesting. I have the opposite problem, having seen all of DS9, and only scattered parts of Babylon 5.

You should rectify that. It's certainly worth a watch. The first four seasons at least. You could probably give season 5 a pass or skip right to the final episode (which was originally the season 4 finale, but pushed to season 5 after they got a 5th season).

Personally, while I like DS9 as a series, it feels very off for Star Trek.

And while I know some people complain about the unrealistic behaviour of people in other series of Star Trek, I found Sisko's morality quite messed up by comparison to any other starfleet captain.

The series also has religious overtones that just feel a little out of place.
On the whole, it's interesting in it's own right, but it fits rather uncomfortably into the other series set in the same period. (TNG and Voyager)

The religious bits may be borrowed from B5. As there's a lot of religion represented in the various cultures. The thing that's cool about B5 is that there are very few throwaway episodes. Almost every episode advances the plot in some way. Heck there's dialogue in the pilot that references the original series finale. It's rife with foreshadowing. Not so with Ds9 from what I've seen. It's just "here's quark, and his former cardassian girlfriend, and some magic gambling machine that's screwing up the station, or whatever." I know they're different episodes, but yeesh.

Only Star Trek I can stand is probably TOS and TNG (and the movies). Enterprise was okay, but very boring in a lot of respects. Particularly the space combat. Almost none of the crew of VOY is likeable (maybe Neelix and 7of9) and I don't like the series handling of the Borg, and DS9 I've already stated my opinions. While it has a few characters who are interesting (Bashir, Dax, O'brien and Worf) they're rarely in the spotlight. Can't stand Sisko, Kira or Quark. I've heard the last few seasons are pretty good but I have no plans to watch it in the near future.

There certainly is quite a bit of foreshadowing in DS9 relating to the dominion, but there's also a lot of surrounding stuff that doesn't matter so much.

Season 1 is the most like Star Trek's traditional episode structure, while seasons 2-4 have a lot of arcs that span 3 or more episodes.

The last 3 seasons have a few scattered episodes that are kind of independent, but for the most part they form a single story.

The ending, however, is a real letdown.

Still, there's a handful of episodes that stand out to me.
To a degree, these are a personal preference, but some of them really do have a strong impact.

The season 1 episode - "Duet", which is about hatred and revenge
(and possibly the episode "progress" as well, depending on how much tolerance you have for Kira)

"The quickening" in season 4, which involves Bashir trying to find a cure for a plague on a planet in the gamma quadrant.

"The visitor" - Which is a time travel story of sorts, where Jake is trying to save is father from something that in his perspective happened a long time ago. (also season 4)

"Our man bashir" - if you can tolerate stories like this, it's fun just for the James Bond parody it represents. (season 4)

"Trials And triblle-ations" - Not really that great on it's own, but the re-use of a TOS episode in a time travel story is visually interesting. (season 5)

"In the pale moonlight" - A rather dark story about the interplay between a person's morals, and the things they do. Can really be summed up around the concept of "The ends justify the means". (season 6)

"Time's Orphan" - Again, a tolerance for the premise is needed, but Molly O'brian ends up lost through a time portal, only to be recovered when she's about 20. (season 6)

The season 6 finale "Tears of the prophets" - Primarily for the battle of Chin'toka

"Favor The Bold + Sacrifice of Angels" in season 6, mostly just for the battle

Anyway, DS9's story arcs certainly aren't coherent enough to involve something meaningful in every episode, but there definitely are a lot of little details that foreshadow the overall plot from season 2 to 7. Which is something you only realise when you watch the whole thing in order.

I just want to say, thank you for using "trekkie" and not "trekker". For some reason, trekker fills me with enough rage to punch every nerd in a 10 mile radius regardless of their choice of sci-fi.

Also, ST>SW.

The Dark Canuck:

So heres a Star Wars and Star Trek conundrum i would like to tell.

If a Red Shirt in Star Trek always dies on a mission.
And a Storm Trooper from Star Wars can never hit anyone with their blasters

What happens when you put the Red Shirt and a Storm Trooper in a cage and have them fight it out?


Nah, you have it slightly wrong. A stormtrooper can't hit anyone -important- with their blasters. They're plenty good against everyone else (See: the beginning of A New Hope). Your Red Shirt doesn't stand a chance.

thanks buzzkillington <.<

I think of the Prime Directive (and First Contact doctrine) as representing a bit more of a the long view of the universe than simply the rights of cultures to "be themselves". Example: let's say that we eventually get around to colonizing and terraforming Mars. Seems like a good thing right?

What the Prime Directive is all about is that almost any planet represents a possibility of future intelligence and civilization. As our sun ages, swells, and pushes the habitable zone outwards in our solar system, who's to say that life on Mars couldn't evolve and become civilized without human intervention? Taking this longer view, our colonization of Mars becomes a genocide.

Of course, if the Prime Directive is taken this way, it becomes extremely restrictive to the expansion of life throughout the universe. A careful viewer will note that Star Trek's characters tend to violate the Prime Directive as often as they follow it. :) Hence, I don't think Roddenberry was necessarily taking one view over the other, but rather highlighting this fundamental conflict among short-lived species between the present and the future.

Thank God I'm not the only person to realize this. Interesting article here:

Taken to its logical extreme of course. Of course this guy is the epitome of a professed Star Wars fanboy and Trek hater. So take all he says with the recommended daily dose of salt.

Ah, Mike Wong's site. He does have some really thoughtful essays about Trek, even if he is an unabashed Star Wars fanboy. A shame he doesn't seem to add anything new these days.

If you follow his line of reasoning, he basically suggests the decline of Trek's core ideals from TOS to the latter seasons of TNG is a result of Flanderization. This essay in particular details the process. But he does seem to be blinded to the decline of Star Wars' core ideals at the same time. As I commented on yesterday's article, Star Trek is a property whose core ideals were betrayed by a committee of the creator's disciples, while Star Wars is a property whose core ideals were betrayed by its own creator.

Interestingly, I think the reason I loved Babylon 5 so much was how it built on the best elements of both Star Trek and Star Wars. B5 brought in the discussion of big ideas and the more realistic science of original Trek and the best TNG episodes, and fused them with mythic storytelling and an epic tale like Star Wars. B5 of course had the tacked on 5th season and most of the movies were bad, but it was still the best thing on TV in its day.

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