Abrams physics

One of the subjects I wanted to hit on in this increasingly neglected blog was how much I hate all the “rebooting” and “reimagining” that’s coming out of the greater Los Angeles area this decade. It started with all of the comic book movies, which I liked at first but which quickly became tiresome. Then we had Battlestar Galactica and now Star Trek, and I know there are a whole host of others that I can’t think of at the moment. Why the hell can’t someone come up with an original idea anymore? Aren’t there any new stories out there?

I wanted to bitch about that, but I just saw the new Star Trek movie and I fucking loved it. So there goes that idea.

I’m not a Trekkie, because I don’t go to conventions, I don’t dress up (okay, I was Dr. Crusher for Halloween once), and I don’t like the original series very much. But Star Trek TNG was a mild obsession for me in college and I went to see just about all of the 10 movies that came before this latest one.

This movie brought out the geek in me because of all the inside jokes, Karl Urban’s hilarious and spot-on take on Bones, and the general giddiness of a truly kick-ass science fiction movie. But what really got me was how ballsy it was to completely change the Roddenberry universe. Warning: Spoilers ahead.

Did I get this right? Did J.J. Abrams just completely wipe out everything that ever happened in the whole Star Trek world? Because of the time travel aspect, everything changed. Not only in the immediate ā€” I mean, wow, Vulcan destroyed, Romulus destroyed, Spock’s mom dead ā€” but in the future. Spock never dies (and gets reborn), Khan never meets Kirk, there are no tribbles, and Picard probably never makes it out of the Academy. This really was a reboot. Everything from this point on in that world is new, as in, nothing that we knew previously will happen as it did. Kirk and the gang are now on a completely different timeline. They can do it all over again. No wonder the Trekkies are pissed; everything they’ve known and enjoyed has been deleted.

I also can’t help but wonder if Abrams’ Star Trek physics is the same as that in Lost. We’re coming up to the Season 5 finale this week, where there will be a decision made whether to kill everyone in order to save everyone. In effect, Jack will try to erase the timeline in the same way that the timeline of Star Trek was erased with this movie. We go back to the beginning, and flight 815 never crashes. Is that what’s coming? I hope not.

Abrams can choose whatever metaphysical reality he wants to. In both narratives, it’s all in his hands to decide how time works and how the paradoxes reconcile. I’m just wondering if both worlds live by the same laws.

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