In case you missed my article last week or forgot to attend you weekly Trekkie meeting – shame on you! – in response to overwhelming demand, Star Trek: The Next Generation is finally coming to Blu-Ray on the 23rd of July. And to mark this monolithic occasion, the good people at Online Fire, working on behalf of Paramount, staged the Star Trek quiz to end all Star Trek quizzes on board the star ship Enterprise.
All right it was above the pub in Chalk farm called The Enterprise; same difference.
I must start with a confession: I am not a Trekkie. Growing up I did not watch the Next Generation. Apart from enjoying First Contact (that’s the 8th film) I’m not really familiar with the new crew. I love the campiness of the original Star Trek and happily watch it whenever it’s on and really enjoy the relationships of the characters in the original series’ and the films. I also have great respect for Star Trek and what it did for TV and sci-fi. But a Trekkie? Not I.
Which is why I knew I had to pick good crew members if I was ever going to stand any chance of being successful in the quiz. I chose Captain Nick Twyford, a wise, well-read fellow, with a deep understanding of the force and a steady command of Federation laws and bylaws. And Mr. David Chin, surely the coolest man to have seen every episode of the Next Generation and with a knowledge of sci-fi fiction matched only by scientologists and TV shows matched only by a man named Nielsen.
To rebel and in the hope of rustling some feathers we decided to go as the original crew, but – not just content with that – choose the uniforms worn in the new movie. Would we be vaporised by Next Generation fan phasers? We were prepared for it.
So while Captain Twyford donned the gold of Kirk, Mr. Chin wore the red of Mr. Scott (although he was mistaken for a red guy and constantly told he wouldn’t last the night) and I wore the blue or Dr. Spock’s evil twin brother in the episode where he pretends to be Spock.
Unfortunately our co-ordinates were a light year or two off and we arrived fashionably, but all the same, late. To our shock, we were not greeted by Trekkies donning the uniforms of the NG crew, or any crew for that matter. Like Kroger and Dorfman, standing in the doorway of Animal House, or like the members of the federation in an episode, which I would sound both knowledgeable and geeky if I could reference here, we stood alone: strangers in a strange land.
However, a friend was at hand. Lieutenant Uhura! Played on the evening with great aplomb by a Miss Florence Vincent of Cult Box TV and Best for Film, she quickly helped us feel less awkward and encouraged us to lower our shields and disengage our cloaking devices.
Under the close guard of two Klingons, who hadn’t heard there was a peace treaty between their race and us Earthlings, Star Trek expert Terry Shuttleworth presides over the quiz, which ranged across all Star Trek shows and films (including the contentious reboot, which I bloody loved!). One-hundred questions were asked in a variety of categories, from picture rounds, general knowledge rounds and even a Klingon round where you had to correctly match the correct spoken Klingon phrase with a list provided.
With 100 questions asked, papers switched and marked then tallied, it was time for the prizes. I am proud to say, Team Picard (that’s us) came away with the gold.
Well, sort of. Our score in the actual quiz was rather abysmal – did I mention the good people at Paramount provided beer and more beer. We scored a lowly mark, which had it not been for my quick and somewhat dishonest reporting to the organiser who asked me our score – I was Evil Spock after all, and had to stay in character – we may have finished dead last. We won Best Costumes! Along with Lieutenant Vincent, we received ltd edition Star Trek Enterprise bottle openers, which I have used as an excuse to drink copious amounts of bottled beer over the weekend.
The actual quiz was won by the team from Star Trek magazine who scored a disgraceful 84 out of 100 – you work for Star Trek magazine, guys! Get it together for next time, lads. Their prize was copies of the 1st series of ST TNG, which in addition to all twenty-six episodes which introduced us to the year 2364 (star date 41000) and Picard, Riker, Data, LaForge, Crusher, Troi and Worf being presented in crystal clear, high definition Blu-Ray picture, the six disc set contains such a multitude of extras that even data would be overwhelmed by.
Star Trek: The Next Generation 1st Series Blu-Ray box set is released on the 23rd of July. Go forth and make it so…
You can read our taster review of the Blu-ray by hitting the “next” button below…