Star Trek - a universe of Trekkies and Tribbles, Vulcans and Klingon opera.
The sixties brought us a lot of things; free love, hippies, incense and peppermint. It also brought an idea to Gene Roddenberry, an idea he touted to TV executives as a “Wagon Train to the Stars”.
For some reason the TV folks thought the time was right for a space western, and in September of 1966 the first episode aired. Three short years later, the series was cancelled, having already been saved once by Lucille Ball and once by the first Trekkies and a mail-in campaign.
When TV shows die they don't fade away, instead they go into syndication. And that is why there are four TV spin offs, one cartoon, countless video and board games, a near infinite number of novels and eleven movies in the Star Trek franchise to date. You can read more on the movies with Cracked writer Peter Lynn's Best and Worse Star Trek Movies of all time. Or check out Chris Bucholz's article on the new movie Star Trek Prequel Spoilers.
Apparently this is the real reason mankind went to the stars.
Gene Roddenberry’s vision was of a culturally diverse future where humanity had gotten past such annoying concepts as racism and poverty. What we saw was a universe where the cannon fodder wore red, medical staff wore blue and exotic dancers were green.
To avoid the production costs of having to film a ship landing, the writers dreamed up "transporter" technology, inadvertently creating one of the best known features in the Star Trek Universe and a plot device that would be abused in ways the original writers could never have imagined.
A "Universal translator" device took care of the fact all the aliens spoke English, & somewhere between the techno-speak and the exploding sets, a cult classic was born.
Star Trek introduced the world to the concept of transporters and warp engines, inspiring engineers and mathematicians around the world. Fans claim that the show has influenced the design of PDA’s, the MRI, and mobile phones.
Okay, they may have a point there.
Since its creation, Star Trek has done more than just entertain us and educate us in the art of techno babble, it has insinuated itself into our culture. Even those who have never seen an episode (and we are only assuming they exist given the laws of infinite probability) would likely recognize the Vulcan greeting of “Live Long and Prosper”.
If you know that "Peace and long life" is the other half of this greeting, congratulations, you're a geek.
Thanks to a write in campaign, there is even a NASA space shuttle named Enterprise, though she’s never made it into space. Our research shows even those not very familiar with the show know about the Vulcan Nerve Pinch, which has been parodied, mocked and envied since Leonard Nimoy decided that karate chopping the bad guy was too crass for his character and invented this manouver instead.
C'mon, confess, you know you would love to be able to do this.
Andorians: Because not everyone wants to wear a unitard
Trekkies, or Trekkers as some of them would prefer to be called, are among the most loyal and obsessed fans, anywhere. They attend conventions & movies in costume, get married by Klingons, and will tear out the heart of anyone foolish enough to claim the Star Wars franchise is better.
A Trekkie was responsible for creating the Klingon Dictionary, 191 pages long and full of pronunciation, grammar and vocabulary information on an entirely ficticious language that is damn near unpronouncable unless you have a head cold.
There have been two documentaries made on the fans of Star Trek. Trekkies, and Trekkies 2. When you get enough fans that they warrant their own movie? That's when you know you've reached epic levels of fame.
Original memorabilia from the TV Show is still bought, sold and traded actively by fans, and in 2006 a 78 Inch longmodel of the Enterprise-D was auctioned off by Christi's Auction house for an astounding half a million US dollars. Proof positive Bill Gates is not the only rich geek in the world.
He might be the one who spent $500 K on a toy space ship.
In 1987 by a band called The Firm released a novelty song based on the Original Series. It sat at the #1 spot in the UK for two weeks, and has been adopted as something of a theme song by many fans of the show.