My Trekker Timeline - part 2 of 2

You can find part 1 of this timeline here.

The year 1995 marked a new chapter of sorts in my Trek fandom. My father had just recently passed away, and we'd grown tired of the podunk town we were living in and were now browsing around a new part of the country (the Pacific Northwest) for a new place to live. It turned out to be prophetic, to a degree, that the new show would premiere the same week that we first set foot in the city that would, not long afterward, feel more like home than any other had before (even though we wouldn't end up actually residing in the city proper). Was it just a coincidence, or does the Trek connection have some deeper significance...?

1995 -- Yet another new Trek series debuts ... Star Trek: Voyager! I'm watching the pilot episode in a hotel room in a state I'd never been in before, but I like it. Echoing a sentiment heard from Rick Berman later on, I too felt like the show hit its stride right off the bat. Deep Space Nine, on the other hand, seems to be struggling, because they feel the need to bring in Worf to try and bolster the show's ratings. It looks like Paramount is about to stumble upon the answer to the question, "How much Trek is too much?" Fandom factor: accelerating to warp 9.

1996 -- Star Trek: First Contact ... sure, there was a TV episode with the same title, but this movie kicks ass! I love Robert Picardo's cameo, and I get a big hoot out of James Cromwell's all-too-human portrayal of the father of warp drive. It's pretty well-timed, too, 'cause the Borg were still pretty scary in this movie, but they'd soon fall victim to severe overuse on Voyager. Fandom factor: slight deceleration to warp 8.5.

1997 -- Presumably because Voyager is beginning to drop in the ratings, Kes is somewhat awkwardly written out of the show, and replaced by a blond Borg babe in a skin-tight catsuit with huge warheads (and no, I ain't talkin' photon torpedoes). With this shameless attempt by Paramount to lure in a less-enlightened 18- to 35-year-old male demographic, my suspicion of Trek's downhill slide is thus confirmed. Fandom factor: slowing to warp 8.

1998 -- An all-too-brief two years after the last movie comes the next, Star Trek: Insurrection. It'd be way cool, if it didn't seem so much like a glorified TV episode. Were the writers so much out-of-steam that they couldn't come up with a really slam-bang Q story for their next big-screen outing? In other news, Deep Space Nine comes perilously close to not being worth watching anymore when Terry Farrell decides to leave the show ... silly, when there's only one year of it left. Fandom factor: further deceleration to warp 6.5.

1999 -- Deep Space Nine goes out with a big, sweeping, serialized, pull-out-all-the-stops, ten-episode bang! If the build-up and payoff hadn't been this good, I wouldn't have been able to forgive Ms. Farrell for sticking us with the comparatively dull Nicole deBoer. As for Voyager ... thanks to the forementioned overuse, the Borg no longer scare the hell out of me, but Jeri Ryan's armor-plated hooters still do. Fandom factor: barely maintaining warp 6.

2001 -- Voyager ends with far less of a bang, in a rather dull and slightly clumsy episode, and not a moment too soon. But wait, still another Trek series is coming out ... Enterprise (sans the "Star Trek" in its title, at least at first). As much as I like Scott Bakula, the show fails to hold my interest through the end of its first season. I guess we should be thankful that they refrained from trotting out this series until after Voyager was finished. Fandom factor: momentarily accelerates from warp 4 to warp 5.

2002 -- We started thinking there wasn't going to be another movie, but after four years, here comes Star Trek: Nemesis. As a movie in general, it was decent, but as far as Trek movies go, it's no surprise it did in the franchise ... I had a headache after I left the theater, if that tells you anything. By this time, I'm just plain all Trekked out (as evidenced by the distinct lack of exclamation points in the last two paragraphs). Fandom factor: slowing from warp 3.5 to warp 2.5.

2005 -- Enterprise limps to an end, not that I care. It's the first Trek series since the original to be canceled due to low ratings. As it should have years before, Star Trek enters a period of dormancy. Fandom factor: antimatter supply depleted, but maintaining warp 2.5.

2007 -- Feeling nostalgic (wait a minute -- can you feel "nostalgic" about something you weren't around for the first time?), I buy all three seasons of The Original Series on DVD, and watch them all from beginning to end, many of the episodes for the very first time. Fandom factor: antimatter reserve allows slow acceleration to warp 3.

2008 -- After a couple years of whispered rumors, confirmed details begin to emerge about a new Star Trek movie, to feature the original crew played by -- gasp! -- new actors. Fandom factor: spontaneous recharge and acceleration from warp 3 to warp 5.

2009 -- At first only mildly interested in the impending big-screen reboot of Star Trek, I become more and more excited with every tidbit I hear and every image that I see, and when I finally see it, I've fallen in love with Star Trek all over again. Fandom factor: continuing buildup to warp 7.

So, as you can see from the chart, my history Trek of fandom has truly been a roller-coaster ride. I'm not much for real roller-coasters, but this one has been fun, and I wouldn't change any of it. Live long and prosper, indeed!

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