• The Phantom Menace: JJ Abrams!

    This has nothing to do with atheism, but if I had to claim a religion it would certainly be Star Wars. At one point I seriously considered starting my own Jedi Temple and my wife and friends have labeled me a George Lucas apologist. Yes, I actually liked the prequels.

    What I love about Star Wars is the philosophical undertones and the hero’s journey. Even after I had seen the saga a million times, I sometimes still glimmer new wisdom from it and have even used Star Wars to explain many philosophical, moral, and rational concepts to others. JJ Abrams cares about none of those things!

    I also love Star Trek. The idealism of Star Trek is the center of my world. The way Gene Roddenberry used science fiction to address contemporary issues was nothing short of amazing. So where was that idealism in JJ Abrams’ Star Trek movie? What was the theme of that film?

    JJ Abrams made a fun, action packed film full of lens flares, but it wasn’t really Star Trek. Sure it had the Enterprise and the characters all had familiar names, but there was no idealism there. At the end of the film Kirk gave Nero the choice to surrender. Nero said no. But instead of Kirk saying, “Fine, I’ll kill you later” (Star Trek III), this is the dialog we got:

    Spock: “Captain, what are you doing?”
    Kirk: “Showing him mercy Spock. I thought you would like that.”
    Spock: “No, that actually.”
    Kirk: “Fire!”

    That’s not Star Trek! JJ Abrams ruined Star Trek and now he is going to ruin Star Wars too. He will make a fun and exciting film with Star Wars characters in it. It will have blasters, lightsabers, and lens flares, but it won’t have the essence that is Star Wars.

    When asked about Star Trek, JJ Abrams admitted that he was never a fan of the series. That’s fine; I don’t think everyone has to love Star Trek (just the smart people), but if he wasn’t a fan of the series, why did he agree to direct the reboot movie? How could anyone expect a non-fan to make a film that honored the fans?

    I recently re-watched Abrams’ Star Trek and it was an enjoyable action film. But it didn’t have the essence of Star Trek. At first, I had given him a pass since this was a setup for a new Star Trek franchise of films. But when he said that he was never a Star Trek fan, I realized that it showed. Star Trek Into Darkness is coming out this summer and we will see then if it has any strong themes, idealism, and the essence of Star Trek. If it doesn’t, then it is unlikely that Star Wars will be any different. I am very disappointed in the news that Abrams will be directing this new Star Wars film. Short of Michael Bay, this was the worst pick they could have made.

    Sorry, had to vent.

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    Category: Geek StuffStar Wars

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    Article by: Staks Rosch

    Staks Rosch is a writer for the Skeptic Ink Network, Huffington Post, and the National Atheism Examiner on Examiner.com. Currently he serves as the head of the Philadelphia Coalition of Reason and is a stay-at-home dad.

    5 comments

    1. I’m not a huge fan of Abrams anyway. He has the great ideas that slowly and steadily descend into madness and then never get explained. Honestly, I thought that Star Trek was one of his best works. But then, I’m not really interested in the things you mentioned in a movie. I’d much rather have a book for those.

      I want a coherent plot, no logical holes, etc. I will say that the first 10 minutes of the movie is very powerful. Probably the best part of the whole thing.

      For me, Star Wars died with Vader.

      1. You mean the overrated man? Yes, sure. Marvel certainty didn’t give him everything he needed + he’s the most talented director ever. 😐

    2. Not only did Abram’s Trek reboot fail to maintain the Trek ideals, it also ignored established canon, where were the Temporal Starfleet to ensure a time-traveling nut did not create catastrophe? Worse, it also completely jettisoned any notion of incorporating current scientific knowledge instead giving us fantasy black holes or that abomination,
      the Omega 13 device…, sorry, red matter I think they called it. It was entertaining in a don’t think about it kinda way because it was written as a string of stand-alone set pieces that then needed to be tied together and it shows. Not Trek in anything but the label.

      However, one thing I did note was Abram’s copying of the Star Wars style which he apparently does like. Spock’s ship for example, that’s really a Star Wars ship as were its flight and fighting characteristics; stick a Jedi in it and you wouldn’t bat an eyelid. He’ll likely get everything else wrong but at least it will look like the Star Wars universe, well, so long as he doesn’t shoot anything in a very terrestrial looking brewery.

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