As I write this, we are just two days away from something many Star Trek fans thought would never happen: the return of Patrick Stewart to the role of Captain Jean Luc Picard. While we haven’t seen even an episode of the show yet, it’s clearly not The Next Generation, whether fans want that or not. But what does it mean to revisit such a classic, impactful character in a sequel series all these years later? Why is now the time, and what can Picard bring to us that some other character couldn’t? And, for those of us who’ve dealt with major franchises before, what makes a series like this different from just another spin-off, like Voyager or Stargate Atlantis? Let’s take a look, here in 2020.Continue reading
Some movies are just so eminently quotable that the dialog takes on a life of its own. People sometimes won’t even realize what it is that they’re quoting–the film has just become that pervasive in popular culture that even people who haven’t watched it might reference it. For a recent example, we’ve seen almost every line of dialog from the Star Wars prequel trilogy turned into a meme over the last few years. Post a comment online somewhere that says “Hello there,” and you’ll have a reply within minutes adding “General Kenobi!”
Of course, this sort of thing is not limited to the prequels. Let’s look at some of the most famous lines and phrases in pop culture and how they got their start.Continue reading
When you’re living in a universe where your alien forefathers were less than cautious, there’s a serious risk you have to consider when dealing with the artifacts they’ve left behind–and that’s the possibility of an unexpected superweapon. After all, their weapons don’t have to look anything like what our weapons do, and it’s not like they’ve kept the instruction manual lying around, either. You might think you’d be safe, since these ancient weapons haven’t been used in thousands of years, but early alien predecessors had a tendency to build things to last, and hooked in to natural power sources that just don’t quit. Here’s a few of the oldest and most dangerous artifacts discovered… so far.
That planet you’re orbiting may look familiar, but how can you be sure it’s the one you left behind? After all, whether you’re getting around with hyperspace, subspace, or something more exotic entirely, you’re leaving the normal universe, with its well understood physical laws, behind. If even the slightest thing goes wrong (or right), you might find yourself in a world both unsettlingly alien and uncomfortably close to home. Alternate universes, where your closest friends are dire enemies or the human race has succumb to tyranny. The rules of these places may go against everything you’ve fought for, but it’s hard enough to save one universe–to try to set things right in all the infinite universes is a task not even Sisyphus would envy.
No, the best you can hope for is to get home (which, if you ask Dr. Sam Beckett, is easier said than done), and here are some of the ways to make sure that happens.
Super Soldiers. Augments. Transhumans. Call your pet project what you will, but the endgame is the same: to create a variety of human that surpasses our natural limitations. I won’t bore such a… “forward thinking” scientist such as yourself with trifling arguments like ethical and moral concerns about playing god or fostering ideas of supremacy. But for someone who seems to be so enamored with your own understanding Nietzche’s ideals, you might be interested in some advice on self-preservation, at least. Because if there’s one thing an engineer of a new race should be aware of, it’s the Hazards of the Ubermensch.