I Love James Lileks

And I want to have his baby….wait, no…I want to write like he does. (Yeah, that’s the ticket!)

Today’s Bleat is a masterpiece, especially if you’re a Trekker.

Dammit, I missed the season finale of Enterprise. Anyway, here’s some savory bits from the column:

“It was all about 9/11. Proves my point, which isn’t really mine at all and is crushingly obvious besides, but one I’ve been making for years anyway: Star Trek TV shows explicitly mirror the geopolitical climate of its times. Each one is an analogy for the era in which it’s conceived. I’ve written this before but I’m too lazy to find it in the archives, so I’ll repeat myself. Warning: this will contain small fragments of unbelievably dorky insider references. Apology: I know this is of limited interest. Explanation: it’s my website. Accusation: you think I’ve cared one whit about Buffy for seven years? No. Have I said one word against the Slayer? No. I respect people’s adoration of the show. I understand these things. Hell, I still watch Twin Peaks reruns.

The original show was your post-Kennedy New Frontier view of the future, with an oversexed cowboy at the helm. You wouldn’t be surprised to learn that Kirk’s first command had been the NCC-109. We all know what that show was about; it’s been pecked to death, so let’s move on.

“Next Generation was the New World Order version of Trek. The Enterprise wasn’t a warship threading its way through uncharted seas – it was a space-faring UN agency with a career diplomat in the captain’s chair. A French diplomat, for heaven’s sake.

“In the original series, the Klingons were the Soviets. In the Next Generation, they were still the Soviets, but now there was a chilly entente. This was a smart move, dramatically speaking; it allowed the show to more time with the Klingons, who were far more fun than any of the stuffy wads-o-rectitude on the Enterprise. (You can trace the entire Klingon subculture to the episode where Riker has a brief tour of duty on a Bird of Prey.) All of a sudden everyone realized these guys were actually alcoholic pirates with a mean sense of humor and a complex social code. And who were the humans? Sober missionaries who never got involved, just showed up to sign treaties. Booooring.

“Oh, NextGen did give us a new species: a villainous bunch of misshapen dwarves called the Ferengi, whose social system was ordered entirely around profit. Capitalists.”

Go read. It’s all good.

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