Monday, October 15, 2007

Star Trek Insurrection

I used to love The Next Generation. It was great. I found myself forgiving the fact they had no internet, and sat in chairs on a spaceship with no seatbelts. And some of the crew have to stand up. For hours probably.

They took their families with them into really dangerous situations and wore really dull clothes. They put the bridge on top of the hull in possibly the most strategically dumb place to put a bridge imaginable. They never, ever used the captain's yacht. And when it was all over, they started making films, carrying on where the original series left off.

'Generations' was lacklustre and contained the most ridiculous plot device ever, a big space-bourne electrical storm that would happily chew up starships, yet allow people like Malcolm McDowell in untouched and then let them live out perfect lives forever. My inner geek would rationalise this by suggesting the Nexus was some sort of imaging or storage device created by an ancient civilisation that has gone awry, but that would be silly. Anyway, it does contain the outstanding sequence where the saucer section of the Enterprise crash lands on the surface of a planet, which is fantastic.

The fact they get pwned by a shitty old Bird of Prey captained by Klingon Fat Slag-alikes Lursa and Be'tor lets it down a bit.

Next came 'First Contact', which has a few daft bits, but rips along fast enough for you not to care. The Borg are ace baddies and are truly creepy. Worf and Picard get to act all hard and we get starships fighting a Borg cube. Acers. So why was Insurrection the pile of cack it ended up being. Basically, nobody gives a shit about the hippies living on the planet of eternal life in their shit clothes and soft focus hair-waving. Pah.
They might as well have been Ewoks. At least we could have had a laugh when they got shot. And why am I bothered now, so long after the event? Why am I even writing about this film? I have to. Perhaps, like Annorax from the terrible Star Trek Voyager I want to rewrite history, as the writers of Trek are so fond of doing with their constant trips into the past. By the way, Voyager was endemic of that whole Insurrection era, kind of like; 'the fans will buy any old tat.' Well, some of us did and some of us didn't.

So here is my rewritten storyline for Star Trek Insurrection. I think it would have been much better, and they might not have made Nemesis then. Which was a bit like they thought, hey, Wrath of Khan was good, let's do that but with Data getting killed. A sad ending to the franchise.

Anyway. Insurrection takes place about the time of the Dominion war as seen in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. So what do the writers of Insurrection do? Send the Enterprise off on some pissy mission to some nothing planet full of smug tossers. In the words of Winehouse:
You don't send your most famous ship off to hide. Picard would have bitten his cup of Earl Grey tea in half when he got those orders. So NO.
In my version, the Enterprise is en-route to join the fleet amassing to battle the Dominion when they get a message from Captain Sisko, aboard the Defiant. Starfleet headquarters have lost contact with two other starships on their way to join the fleet and the Enterprise is the closest vessel to the missing ships. Picard orders the Enterprise to the last known co-ordinates of the vessels. They soon find one of the starships, the USS Shackleton, severely damaged and drifting. There is no sign of the other ship, the USS Wellington. An away team beams over to the Shackleton and finds the crew dead. Geordi and Data quickly confirm the crew have been killed by phaser fire. The Shackleton has apparently been attacked by the Wellington. Ooo.
The Enterprise crew find most of the ships armaments, photon torpedoes, phaser rifles and the unknown contents of a cargo bay have been taken. During a briefing from Starfleet, it turns out that the Wellington was a kind of 'Dirty Dozen' starship, crewed by convicted ex-starfleet officers and personnel. The Shackleton was escorting the Wellington to the battle. On board was a transmitter which would detonate explosives aboard the Wellington if the convicts tried to escape. Somehow the convicts had disabled this control and escaped, attacking the Shackleton during the process and killing all those on board. Picard's orders have changed. He has to stop the USS Wellington at any cost and retrieve the secret weapon stolen from the Shackleton.
As he give the order to begin the search, a distress call from a cargo ship comes in. The ship is being attacked by a starfleet vessel...

Doesn't that sound better? The baddies could be a crew of nutcases, murderers, cannibals, you name it. There could be any number of admirals on board, as they are notorious for going bonkers. You could even have kept the bloke who played the baddy in 'Amadeus' in it as the baddie. He wouldn't have had to wear make up either. A bonus for him and a cost saving for the production.
I haven't really worked out what happens while the Enterprise are chasing the Wellington, but a cool scene could involve chasing them through the fleet battling the Dominion. That would have been awesome. The CGI boys would have pissed their pants when they read that in the script.
You may well think my idea is rubbish. It's certainly pointless. And yet, some time in the future, somebody might find this post and use some futuristic software or something to create my version of Insurrection. And find out that I was right.

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