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Poll of the Week: In Case of Mirror Universe, Break Glass

Star Trek throws the viewer into a universe of boundless hope and optimism for the future, striving for patience, compassion, exploration, forsaking bloodshed and violence for logic and knowledge. A universe in which humanity is learning from mistakes and endeavouring to be better. Way back in those heady days of the 1960s, the writers of Star Trek: The Original Series threw this concept and theme into the ether as the familiar faces and beloved crew of the Enterprise headed into realms unknown — into a mirror universe, where bodies were scantly clad, facial hair was proliferous, and hedonism reigned supreme, all with a tasty agony booth to top off the experience.

Barring Voyager and TNG, each series indulged in a little MU of their own, giving the viewer a glimpse into the universe where the Terran Empire reigns with a golden sword of glory; a theme later explored to a further extent in Star Trek: Discovery. While some episodes utilised the trope to explore different themes and reflect on the alternate personalities of the characters and situations, like Archer’s paranoid determination to take control of the Empire in “In a Mirror, Darkly”, others took a comical view of it, playing for the advantage of the one-off “special”. Who can forget the incredibly confused Rom in DS9’s “The Emperor’s New Cloak”?

Taking the theme a step further after the completion of the series, Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Voyager both got to indulge in their inner mirror, each with a comic book miniseries. Picard heads out to battle against the Klingon-Cardassian alliance, while Janeway becomes the Pirate Queen of the Quadrant.

This week, we’d like to know about the Mirror Universe you enjoyed the most. Did you take to Intendant Kira like a duck to water? Or revel in Kirk’s impassioned speech to Spock to let them return to their own universe. Do you long for the days of uninhibited goatee growth and unregulated agony booth access?

Which of the Mirror Universe episodes was your favourite?

Click here to head to the forums now and vote in this week’s poll. Be sure to leave a comment in the thread!


Poll of the Week: Holodecking Across the Universe

Star Trek has provided us with a chance to delve into the future of technology and discover what could lie in store for us in the next 400 years. We’ve explored the variety of technology that we want to see earlier, rather than later, and every day, scientists and engineers make new discoveries fuelled by dreams of reaching those heights. Holosuites, however, could be a closer reality than once believed. Introduced in Star Trek: The Next Generation, the holodeck quickly became a fan favourite, allowing the writers to expand on the entertainments available to those posted on ship for long stretches of time as starships became mobile stations, and storytellers to explore the lines between reality and fiction, created by a perfect simulacrum.

Taking a nosedive into the world of the holodeck, the series has shown us a variety of holoprograms to entertain and thrill, and to train and educate. We can slide through the scuba-diving in Hanauma Bay, or jumping into the training simulations of Operation: Fort Knox, experience the Klingon Rite of Ascension or take coffee in Café des Artistes. They recreated simulations of great Earth battles; the Hirogen sought the holodeck for Klingon war games, while training simulations allowed Doctors the independence to learn without harm.

The holodeck also allowed the viewer a glimpse into the private life of the characters we know and love, with unforgettable moments. Picard role played as the eponymous Dixon Hiil in detective noir, Tom Paris as Captain Proton, Julian Bashir as a secret agent listening to the crooning melodies of Vic Fontaine, Data as a Deadwood gunslinger and Sherlock Holmes, while Janeway liked to kick back in Leonardo da Vinci’s workshop.

This week, we’d like you to have a think about what holodeck experiences you and your characters would like to indulge in. What could tempt you into the holodeck, or what does your character like to simulate?

What’s your favourite holodeck simulation from the series, and why?

Click here to head to the forums now and vote in this week’s poll. Be sure to leave a comment in the thread!


Poll of the Week: Boldly Going Where No Trek Show Has Gone Before

Each series of Star Trek has explored different genres of television, veering from deep and meaningful dramas (In the Pale Moonlight), outright comedy (any Ferengi episode), philosophical quandaries (Let That Be Your Last Battlefield) to even ghost stories (but let’s not mention Sub Rosa, eh?) whilst all remaining within the same overall genre of space opera. Heck, TOS did a western (as did TNG now I come to think about it).

With the addition of an animated comedy to the Trek canon, and an upcoming children’s show, it would appear that exploring different genres within the Trek universe is the way to go if you’re making a new show. What sorts of show would you like to see? Perhaps a medical show in the vein of General Hospital, but set at Starfleet Medical? A police procedural set on Qo’nos, the Klingon homeworld? Perhaps an anthology show like American Horror Story, but set in different points of Starfleet’s history? A mockumentary like the Office, but at Starfleet HQ (don’t lie, you’d love to see Commodore Oh’s Jim Halpert face)?

Would you like to see a new genre of Star Trek show set in the universe?

Let us know in the comments and let’s hope nobody nicks them to make a kick-ass show!

Click here to head to the forums now and vote in this week’s poll. Be sure to leave a comment in the thread!


Poll of the Week: Let The Good Times Be Gin

We raise a glass in toast at social events, we crack bottles of champagne against ships leaving dry dock for the first time, it brings parties together and gets the Doctor relaxing after a hard day in the medical office. Raising the spirit by raising the spirit is a time-honoured tradition we honour on each and every ship with one beverage or another, taking the time out of the busy shore leave schedule to sing drinking songs in the evening and recover from the hangover come the bright sunlight.

Star Trek has given us a wealth of alcoholic drinks to weave into our narratives, from all different species throughout the galaxy, including bars from one end of Bajor to the far reaches of the Klingon Empire. Quark stocked his bar to the brim with everything from the Cardassian liquor Kanar, to the Modela aperitif, while on the Enterprise we had the ever-wonderful Guinan providing her sage advice and wisdom to all who turned up at that bright blue bar of Ten Forward. So, whether your Trill adores the subtle notes of a Bajoran springwine, or your Andorian challenges themselves with a Romulan ale, there’s something for everyone to get stuck into.

For this week’s poll, we’d like to know what beverages your characters are likely to kick back on shore leave with? What alcoholic drinks, or non-alcoholic, do your characters sup when not in the pilot’s chair?

What alcoholic (or non-alcoholic) beverage does your character enjoy?

Let’s pop the cork and let the good times roll!

Click here to head to the forums now and vote in this week’s poll. Be sure to leave a comment in the thread!


Poll of the Week: Greatest Rivalry

Since the earliest times, we fill tales and saga with the struggles of the epic hero and the vicious villain, from Homer’s The Iliad through to the casting down of Lucifer in John Milton’s poem Paradise Lost. Each story shows the archetypes of good and evil, the battle between the two raging on throughout the narrative in themes, concepts and arcs. If we’re lucky, the fall comes with a redemption arc, allowing the villain to redeem themselves and repent for their actions in the eyes of the beholder, and the hero to show themselves to be magnanimous and gallant in their forgiveness.

In our beloved world of Star Trek, this epic battle between good and evil is a little more complex. The villains presented to us over the course of the series allow us a deeper look at their motivations, perhaps even what makes the villain tick behind the simplification of evil doing evil for the sake of being evil. There are glorious examples of this in the way Deep Space Nine treats their villains in Kai Winn and Gul Dukat, allowing the viewer that additional knowledge about the motivations behind their actions.

Similarly, within our own Star Trek universe of Starbase 118, we’ve had our epic battles between good and evil, between hero and villain, and our intricate narratives reflect this. And sometimes, just sometimes, evil wins.

This week we’d like to open up the discussions of those epic villains in the Star Trek universe, those wonderful rivalries which kept us glued to the serial episode after episode, and which you believe to be the best of those rivalries.

Which of these on screen rivalries was the best of Star Trek?

Click here to head to the forums now and vote in this week’s poll. Be sure to leave a comment in the thread!


Poll of the Week: Best Planet for Vacation

For many of us, summer is a time to consider vacations as a family. And while we may have a plethora of options in real life to visit, imagine all the countless locales that our characters could visit in the Star Trek universe! The pleasure planet of Risa is a popular choice of many Star Trek characters and is featured in three distinct television series. In the episode “Two Days and Two Nights” (ENT), Archer and crew get into unexpected entanglements. “Captain’s Holiday” (TNG) presents us with an exciting, yet laid backside of Captain Picard when he meets the mysterious Vash. “The Game” (TNG) shows us Riker bringing back a dangerous technology to the Enterprise that he was introduced to by a woman he met while vacationing there. “Let He Who Is Without Sin …” (DS9) visits the planet again and Worf becomes involved with a dangerous terrorist group.

It is these kinds of secondary planets woven into the fabric of the Star Trek galaxy that gives us a deeply rich place to write and roleplay. Where would your character choose to visit for some extended shore leave away from the ship? Would they eschew the common tourist destinations and pick something a little more out of the way like Bolarus, Andoria, or Betazed? What draws them to these destinations?

Where would your character like to visit for some rest and relaxation?

Click here to head to the forums now and vote in this week’s poll. Be sure to leave a comment in the thread!


Poll of the Week: Fenris Rangers

As the new series of Star Trek: Picard hits our screens and disrupts our lives, there’s a new addition to the organisations which has sprouted intrigue amongst fans.

The Fenris Rangers — an organization which sprung up after the Federation withdrawal and the Romulan collapse to help bring justice to the oppressed, and to fight the warlordism that the region could descend to without an organization to bring peace to chaos. With its own ships, beacons and well known among people operating in the zone, good people and ne’er do wells.

While many say that there is an organization within Starfleet that does a similar job, the Starfleet Rangers, any Fenris Ranger might argue that they’re often too timid to do what must be done, and too bound by the fickle political will of the Federation and restrictive rules of engagement of Starfleet. Some officers left Starfleet to join the Fenris Rangers, such as Icheb and Seven of Nine, and while it has had mixed results, it was undoubtedly a force for stability within the former Romulan Neutral Zone and bordering sectors.

For our poll this week, we’re interested to know what you would do. Would you be one of these officers who leave Starfleet? To join an organization attempting to be justice in a dark galaxy by any means necessary? Or do you feel that vigilantism, even well-intentioned, is a danger to people as justice can become vengeance?

Would you join the Fenris Rangers?

Click here to head to the forums now and vote in this week’s poll. Be sure to leave a comment in the thread!


Poll of the Week: Best Family-Oriented Episode

Family is often at the root of why our favorite characters are the way they are. The formative years can shape who a person grows up to be and the personality they exhibit. Interactions with parents, children and siblings tell us more about a person than seeing them fire phasers or save the day. It’s no wonder that some of the best storytelling we have in the Trek-verse involves the families of the main characters. The tiny glimpses we get behind the veneer to peek at what makes them tick enliven these personas even more. Who can forget the first sight of tiny Alexander as he stands facing his towering father Worf?

Does the best family story involve the long-dead family that Picard experiences within his mind in “The Inner Light” (TNG) when under the influence of an alien probe? Perhaps it’s the first view we get of Spock’s parents in “Journey to Babel”? This episode goes a long way in making the Vulcan seem less alien and more relatable. Maybe your favorite episode is “Family” (TNG) where we get a picture of Picard with his brother on the family vineyard as he recuperates from the Borg assimilation and the visit of Worf’s adoptive parents to the Enterprise. Or it might be the Hugo-nominated episode “The Visitor” (DN9) where we find an ageing Jake Sisko recounting the struggle of losing his father and then paying the ultimate sacrifice to save him.

For our poll this week, we ask you to tell us your favorite Star Trek episode that features a family-themed storyline.

What is the best family episode in your opinion and why?

Click here to head to the forums now and vote in this week’s poll. Be sure to leave a comment in the thread!


Poll of the Week: Technology In Question

For all the connections, friendships, and political intrigue that exists in the world of Star Trek, none of it would be possible without the technology which underpins it all. Our starships thrum with power from the warp engines to propel these huge megastructures through space across the galaxy, storing food is no longer an issue as replicators using modules and digital instructions reproduce whatever is called for, tricorders of both the medical and scientific give knowledge and information on scanned items at the push of control, and universal translators allow species to converse without requiring full knowledge of the language. 

Technology has also become the central backbone of our everyday life as well, be that communicating over vast distances with people in other languages, using smartphones to replicate tricorders to give us information wherever we are in the world, 3D printing using replicator technology to print on demand what we want, or the virtualisation of our environment using virtual reality devices transporting us out of our physical space. Wherever we look, technology is improving in leaps and bounds, faster than we can anticipate, and we’re already looking at a future filled with the technology we have seen for decades on Star Trek’s futuristic scope.

For our poll this week, we invite you to look forward into the future of this technological relationship between fictional and real.

Which of these Star Trek technologies you would most like to see in your lifetime?

Click here to head to the forums now and vote in this week’s poll. Be sure to leave a comment in the thread!


Poll of the Week: Opening Credits Music

The universe of Star Trek has given us some beautiful pieces of music. These iconic works of art embody the vastness of space and the wandering spirit of our favorite heroes as they traipse through the galaxy each week. The warbling tones of The Original Series reminded us of the other-worldly nature of their journey among the stars. The Next Generation brought a brassy and unforgettable tune that energized us for the story ahead. Each piece fit into an amazing tapestry of audible delight. And don’t get us started on the movies!

When Enterprise aired, however, many fans were split on the inclusion of music with lyrics – Russel Watson’s “Where My Heart Will Take Me”. For some, it is the perfect reflection of the explorer’s creed. It reminds us that the intrepid explorers are on a mission that is led by their beating hearts. It is why they are out there among the stars and why we watch their exploits with such rapt attention. For others, it’s something to be banished from memory.

For our poll this week, we invite you to imagine that the ship or installation you serve on is the setting for a Star Trek television show.

What would be the music playing over the opening credits? Let us know what music reflects the culture and ethos of your ship!

Click here to head to the forums now and vote in this week’s poll. Be sure to leave a comment in the thread!


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