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TREKTODAY.COM - View Archives: July 1999

News headlines from July 1999:


Wednesday July 28, 1999
New Comics Q&A
Christian (4:57 pm CST)
Over at the Trek Nation, we've got a new set of answers from comics editor Jeff Mariotte to all your comics-related questions. Take a look at one of them:

Query From: Jon Huff
I wondered, in your list of writers you mentioned several people who had written Star Trek novels but who had not, to my knowledge, written any comics. I mention this because the Voyager series at Marvel had an author who was accomplished as a book author, but she didnt seem to fully grasp that in comics you let the pictures do the setting up of the scene, not the words. This made the stories come off as a bit clunky in the dialouge department sometimes.

Also, a continued frustration of mine with Star Trek comics in general is that far too many writers limit what kind of stories they tell in order to "maintain the feel of Star Trek" when in fact the writers on the various TV shows often dont get to tell the kind of stories they want because of budgetary reasons. From the stories proposed so far, would you say we are going to see the Star Trek universe "expanded" or "opened up a bit" in the comics?

Response From: Jeff Mariotte
Of the writers named in the initial release, I think the only one who hasn't written any comics previously is Keith DeCandido. I've seen his first script, and he has a very good understanding of the demands of the genre. He certainly has read comics for a long time, and his job as editor of the Marvel and WildStorm novels has kept him close to it. The other writers, even the ones who are primarily novelists, have all written comics.

And yes, part of what makes these comics cool is that there is no special effects budget to worry about.

Lots more interesting answers, plus an online form where you can submit your own questions to Jeff, can be found in the full update.

Jeri Ryan Magazine News
Christian (4:23 pm CST)
Jeff 'Koganuts' Koga has sent in two reports about magazines which will soon feature Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine). First of all, she will be the cover girl for the September 1999 issue of PC Accelator magazine, the computer mag which 'mixes dames and games,' as they say. The cover article will deal with Raven's 'Voyager: Elite Force' game, which will also feature an appearance by Seven.

Secondly, the September 1999 issue of Playboy magazine features an interview with Jeri Ryan, accompanied by the same photo which appeared in Bikini Magazine earlier this year. Take a look at how the interview begins:

Jeri Ryan burst into television prominence by wearing a formfitting costume on Star Trek: Voyager that many male fans pray she'll one day burst out of. Cast as Seven of Nine, Ryan is a no-nonsense Borg who is returned to her human form after the Voyager's crew encounter with the Collective leaves her stranded on the Federation starship. It's a challenging role that Ryan accepted only after the producers promised her that Seven was no intergalactic Barbie doll. In return Ryan has created a complex young woman trying to understand and regain her humanity even while Borg notions of efficiency and perfection linger in her head. And there's still the babe factor. It didn't take long for TV Guide to recommend that the producers rename Seven of Nine "Ten Out of Ten."

Ryan grew up as an Army brat, trained at Northwestern University's drama department, is the mother of a young son and has serious career ambitions. We asked Contributing Editor David Rensin to go where many men would love to go and meet with Ryan. Rensin reports: "We hooked up midafternoon in a nearly deserted Polo Lounge at the Beverly Hills Hotel. In contrast to her stern TV persona, Ryan laughs easily. Each time she did, she kicked my leg under the table. I thought briefly of moving out of the way but decided I would rather get my kicks."

After that, 20 questions from the reporter follow. Thanks go out to Jeff for reporting about those two articles, and for transcribing the above text.

New Nicole deBoer Interviews
Christian (4:23 pm CST)
Daring deBoer has re-printed not one, but two new interviews with Nicole deBoer (Ezri Dax). The first one first appeared in 'Femme Fatale,' and was written by Anne Kaplan. The interview doesn't really contain any new information, but you can still find it here. In Kevin Dilmore's article for the Star Trek Communicator, deBoer talks about being part of Star Trek:

"When I started the show, I wasn't that freaked out that it was Star Trek. I tried to look at it as just another job," she says and laughs during a recent break in production. "Then I got to the point where little things would just hit me at the end of the day. We were dealing with the Ezri and Worf story line, and when I got home, I sat on the couch with my mom and dad, and we were watching Next Generation, and I said, 'Gosh, I kissed Worf today!'"

The full article (including several pictures) can be found here.

'Voyager: Elite Force' Interview
Christian (4:21 pm CST)
UGN3D's Dan Lewis has put up an interview with either Ryh-Ming Caroline Poon or Brian Pelletier, both working at Raven Software (all the links to the article mention Pelletier, while the actual article mentions Poon). Whoever is interviewed, some interesting information on how Activision obtained the Trek license is given:

Apparently, there are is an abundance of Star Trek licenses being dished out by Paramount this year. How did you manage to grab the Star Trek Voyager title? And how in god's name did you get your hands on the Quake III engine so quickly?

Activision has been negotiating with Paramount for quite some time to obtain the Star Trek license. They finally reached an agreement sometime late last year, therefore making it possible for Activision to create Star Trek based games. Activision, who owns Raven Software, approached us to create one of their first round of Trek title games. Activision wanted to make a diverse group of Trek games and one idea was a first person shooter. Raven is familiar with making these types of games and our game Soldier of Fortune was progressing nicely so they offered the game to us and of course we gladly accepted.

We weren't sure at first what part of the ST universe we were going to make a game from but it didn't matter it is a rich universe full of possibilities. Eventually it was decided that we would make the game based on Voyager and we were even more excited because Voyager is away from known space leaving many open ended possibilities for the game. As far as acquiring Quake III, Activision is also involved with Id software and because Raven has worked with almost every Id engine in the past it only made sense to license the Technology again. All of these circumstances allowed us to get our hands on the engine right away.

More can be found in the full, rather in-depth interview. You can find it here.

'Course: Oblivion' Final Ratings
Christian (4:20 pm CST)
The Universe just put up the final ratings report for Voyager's 'Course: Oblivion,' which was repeated last week:

The final rating for last weeks episode is in, and Voyager did okay for a rerun in July. At 9 pm wednesday Voyager got a 2.0 and was nr. 102. UPNs higest rated show was "Moesha" with a 2.1.

For those keeping track, this is the second week in a row that 'Moesha' (also in repeats) scores higher than 'Voyager.'

German 'Star Trek Party' Report
Christian (4:20 pm CST)
At the German Star Trek Index, there's a report of the 'Star Trek Party' which was recently held in the town of Rastatt. The party was organised by Daimler-Chrysler (the car company, yes), for reasons which aren't completely clear to me. The party itself apparently turned out really well, as there were more than 300 guests who were able to take part in costume contests and a special showing of 'Star Trek: First Contact.' A full (German) report can be found by clicking this link.

First Look Playstation Trek Game
Christian (4:19 pm CST)
Untitled Playstation Star Trek game - copyright Activision, Courtesy GameSpot Gamespot has put up a small 'first look' at the recently announced Activision game for the Playstation:

As we reported yesterday, Star Trek is heading to the PlayStation. Based on the Star Trek: The Next Generation series, this new title will focus on action-packed gameplay with intense space battles. This game is being developed by a team at Warthog that consists of some of the members of the Colony Wars team. These pictures should give you a good indication of what to expect from the game.

More text on the game, plus another early screenshot, can be found here.

Blaze of Glory CCG News
Christian (4:19 pm CST)
Decipher, the official publisher of the Star Trek Customizable Card Game, has put up two news items related to their new 'Blaze of Glory' expansion pack. First up is their 'Blaze of Glory' Diffraction Foil List, which if I understand it correctly is a list of extremely rare 'Blaze of Glory' cards.

Secondly, they have a news item about the use of 'Blaze of Glory' at official tournaments:

GenCon and San Diego Comic Con are about to get much more exciting for fans of the Star Trek CCG. In addition to Open and Invitational Qualifiers, and the much-anticipated Team tournaments, we are now announcing a special Blaze of Glory sealed deck format for both conventions. Players of the Blaze of Glory sealed deck tournament will receive:

  • One Starter Deck II
  • Four expansion packs of Blaze of Glory
  • One complete set of common Tactic cards (plus one Battle Bridge Door) from Blaze of Glory (17 cards total)

More info on the use of the expansion set at the tournaments can be found here.

Strategy Planet BotF Review
Christian (4:18 pm CST)
Tragius at Strategy Planet has written a review of 'Birth of the Federation,' Microprose's not-so-new turn-based strategy game. Take a look at how he begins his review:

Star Trek has a serious problem when it comes to its video game franchise. It seems to be cursed. With the exception of the Monkey Islandish 25th Anniversary game, they have all generally been quite bad. Birth of the Federation squeaks by being truly horrible, and manages to pull itself up to the "inconsistent quality" category. Some portions of the game are very well done, others are truly uninspired or seemingly unfinished, and finally some bits we have all come to expect from an empire game are just plain missing. Unfortunately, this leaves Birth of the Federation (BotF) as merely an OK game rather than a really good one.

In the full review Traguis provides us with an exploration of all the game's various features.

Romulan RPG Boxed Set
Christian (4:18 pm CST)
In his new Out of the Box column at Mania, Star Trek RPG developer Kenneth Hite once again examines some of the latest happenings in the RPG world. This includes, of course, the recent announcement that Decipher will be buying FASA, but Hite also talks about some of the recent RPG releases. One of these is 'The Way of the D'era: The Romulan Boxed Set' for his own TNG RPG:

My connection with The Way of D'era: The Romulan Boxed Set (126 page rule and source book, 64 page character book, 32 page adventure book, two full color posters including a supremely cool map of the Romulan Star Empire, all $35) is somewhat slighter: I did a desperate first cut at developing it, and in a series of lengthy late-night phone calls with Ross Isaacs, helped him brainstorm the revelation that moved this from an okay Romulan sourcebook into what I really think Ross made one of the best possible expansions on the Star Trek TNG RPG imaginable, almost a brand-new RPG in itself for Romulan gaming. Other authors include James Estes, Jim Cambias, Steve Kenson, Steve Long (showing an unexpected lyrical touch in his sections), Christian Moore, and still others. And Charles Ryan did the strutworthy map, which rules.

Hite's thoughts on the Decipher/FASA deal can be found in the full column.

Today On TV
Christian (4:17 pm CST)
-At 9:00pm, UPN will be repeating Voyager's 'Night.' Take a look at how the official Continuum describes the episode:

'Night' - Courtesy Paramount Pictures The crew of the USS Voyager is unsettled as a secluded and conflicted Captain Janeway reflects on the decision she's made along the mission and the consequences those judgements have had for them all. But soon the team of the USS Voyager encounters two never before seen alien species - a nocturnal alien and its foe, the Malon - and knows that one will not survive without their intervention. Knowing that coming to their aid makes a detour through dark, desolate space necessary, the captain alone must once again determine her crew's fate.

'Night,' which first aired on the 14th of October, was actually Voyager's season premiere this season. Due to Dutch television only being a year behind, it's also one of the few season five episodes I've actually seen - plus it's one of the worst Voyager episodes I've ever seen. I really completely hated 'Night.' Anyways, don't let that spoil your enjoyment of the episode :-). Thanks go out to the Continuum for both the description and the picture, which is of course copyrighted by Paramount.

-At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the second-season Original Series episode 'The Trouble With Tribbles,' still fitting into their Klingons theme week.

-Joseph Greco, UK television reporter while the Television Observation Unit is on hiatus, sends in word that tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Things Past.' At 18:00, BBC Two will be showing DS9's 'Cardassians.'

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Auge des Universums' (Sanctuary) tomorrow at 02:05 CET. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Rivalen' (Rivals).

Trek BBS Today
Christian (4:16 pm CST)
Today's most interesting topics from the Trek BBS:

-Assuming the new series is set in a different era than Deep Space Nine and Voyager, what sort of technology changes would you like to see?

-How do Deep Space Nine and Babylon 5 compare to each other?

Find more at the Trek BBS!

Hello World!
Christian (4:16 pm CST)
In case you were wondering, yes, this week's installment of our 'Franchise's Future' series of articles is slightly delayed. Unfortunately the author of the article had some problems which delayed the article, but he assures me it'll be ready as soon as possible.

Tuesday July 27, 1999
New Trek Nation Mailbag
Christian (1:28 pm CST)
A day late, unfortunately, but at least now we've got the new edition of the Trek Nation Mailbag up! This week, we've got lots of readers' opinions on the future of Voyager, several comments on the Voyager cancellation rumours, a unique look at the jokers that send me fake news submissions, and comments on all our latest featured articles. Find it all here, and after that, send mail to feedback@treknation.com to actually have your mails published!

'Spock Must Die!' Review
Christian (1:25 pm CST)
Issue 118 of the Sci-Fi Weekly contains a review of 'Spock Must Die!,' the original Star Trek novel by James Blish. In general, reviewer Tamara I. Hladik rather liked the novel:

Although the title of this book must have launched a thousand classic jokes, Spock Must Die! actually deserves classic status, arguably aided by its melodramatic title. Although franchise literature is frequently substandard or downright cheesy, Blish writes the Trek characters well, keeping them true to form and, in the case of Uhura (whose character was always somewhat neglected on the series), even fleshing them out a bit.

More can be found in the full review, which recommends the book to everyone. I myself recently saw the book in a local bookstore for no less than 30 guilders ($15). While that is just a few dollars more than what we usually have to pay for Trek novels here, this time I passed - even I refuse to spend that much money on a book with just over a hundred pages.

Margaret Clark Answers
Christian (1:24 pm CST)
Pocket Books editor Margaret Clark has updated her Q&A Board again, giving us all the latest inside info on what's hot and happening in the world of Star Trek books. Take a look at one of the questions, in which she provides us with some new info on the 'DS9 Milennium' trilogy:

Query from: Michael
Margaret, A few questions about the Millenium trilogy: 1) Are the books numbered as DS9 books (i.e. #27, #28, #29)? 2) Do the books have individual titles? If so, what are they? 3) Based on what you've stated, the story takes place before the end of DS9. During which season does the action take place? Thanks!

Response from: Margaret Clark
The DS9 books will be numbered 1-3, we are still taking internally if they will use the series numbers.

Book 1 -- The Fall of Terok Nor
Book 2 -- The War of the Prophets
Book 3-- Inferno

Okay, you asked, so I won't be cute. First, sixth, twenty five years in the future.

In the rest of the Q&A update, Clark talks about everything from Rick Sternbach's proposal for a Voyager Technical Manual to the upcoming 'Starship Enterprise' book.

'Free Enterprise' Wider Release
Christian (1:23 pm CST)
Dark Horizons is reporting that the independent film Free Enterprise, starring William Shatner, will soon be released in other cities besides Los Angeles:

After a successful run in Los Angeles, the comedy "Free Enterprise" will be hitting cities further East (namely New York and Chicago) for one-night only special screenings. The film stars Eric McCormack (TV's "Will & Grace") and Rafer Weigel (TV's "Jenny") who are die hard Trekkies that meet their idol William Shatner (playing himself) in a bookstore. They soon realise though that he's nothing like they expected - a boozing, alcoholic womanizer trying to put on a one-man version of Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar". Both screenings are on Friday August 6th, in New York its playing at the 'Art Greenwich Theatre' (12th & Greenwich Street), in Chicago at the 'Threepenny Theatre' in Lincoln Park. Meanwhile the official site has been updated with a commerical from the film that's worth checking out.

I really hope this film will also make it to the Netherlands - I *so* desperately want to see it. Thanks go out to Section 31 for pointing me to this.

New Sev Trek Comic Online
Christian (1:22 pm CST)

Sev Trek header
Sev Trek - cartoon spoofs of Star Trek. Copyright 1999 by John Cook.

Vic Fontaine CD Details
Christian (1:22 pm CST)
Section 31 has received a report from Doug Wilson about the upcoming Vic Fontaine CD from James Darren. Doug sent a mail to James Darren's record label, and got the following response:

You've seen and heard him on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine as the fully interactive, crooning hologram, Vic Fontaine. Now, by popular demand, the man and the voice behind the hologram, James Darren, steps out with his own Concord Records debut. Reprising a collection of songs that his hip, love-,life-, and women-wise character Vic Fontaine sang in the "Holosuite", James Darren pulls out all the stops - with accompaniment by big band & strings, and charts by today's top arrangers -- in a recording that is a must-have for lovers of classic, swinging crooning, as well as the legions of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine fans.

A full tracklisting of the CD can be found here.

[Update, 22:49 CET:] The CD will apparently be called "This One's From The Heart," and is currently scheduled to be released on the 24th of August. Info on the CD from Amazon can be found here.

New Version Trek Effects Program
Christian (1:21 pm CST)
Discreet, a division of Autodesk, Inc. has announced the release of a new version of their 3D Studio Max Program. According to the press release, the software has been used for 'Star Trek: Insurrection,' and for Deep Space Nine and Voyager. In the full press release you can find some of the features of the programs, plus testimonials from people who actually worked on Star Trek using the Discreet program.

Patrick Stewart Chat On Thursday
Christian (1:21 pm CST)
This Thursday, the Continuum will be hosting a live chat with Patrick Stewart, best known for his role as Captain Jean-Luc Picard. The chat will begin at 06:30pm Pacific Time, though advance questions can already be submitted here. Considering the chat will probably be rather busy (advertising banners are running all over the Continuum for the event), submitting your questions now already might be a good idea.

In addition to the Patrick Stewart chat, the Continuum has announced they'll be organising a live chat with Trek's Costume Designer Bob Blackman on Thursday the 26th of Auguts, also at 06:30pm.

IGN PC Armada Preview
Christian (1:21 pm CST)
IGN PC has put up a new preview of 'Armada,' Activision's upcoming real-time strategy game set in the TNG universe. The rather in-depth preview also contains info on the game's storyline:

The story in Armada begins six months after the last episode of Deep Space Nine. In the single player mode, you'll first take on the role of a Federation Admiral just after the discovery has been made that the Borg have launched a full-scale invasion of the Alpha Quadrant. If you manage to survive the Federation missions, you'll move on to take control in turn of the Klingon fleet, fighting civil war in order to united the Klingon Empire against the Borg, the Romulans, as they attempt to make a deal with the devil (so to speak) and finally the Borg itself where, "you'll be able to control the Borg ships for your own evil Borg purposes," according to Ian Davis, the game's Technical Director and Lead Programmer.

The single player game unfolds over 26 missions, the same number of episodes in a season, but Armada will also ship with over 30 multiplayer maps and an editor that will let you make as many new ones as you like. "What we're really trying to do with this game," says Ian, "is to capture the hardcore Star Trek fan by offering them the chance to control space battles like they've only seen briefly in the show, but we also think that we can get the RTS fan to go absolutely nuts over this."

The rest of the preview contains several all-new screenshots, ships, special weapons and the hazards and obstacles on the maps. Find it all here.

Jeri Ryan In 'Ralph' Magazine
Christian (1:20 pm CST)
The Australian The Age web site contains an article by Sue-Ann Post, in which she talks about the new edition of the Australian 'Ralph' magazine. She begins by strongly criticizing the magazine for a stereotypical attitude towards lesbians in one of the Ralph articles (as she is one herself), but then tells us about another article in the mag:

Now before this turns into a complete slag-fest I should confess that I did have one ulterior motive for buying the magazine; namely a six-page interview and photo spread of the actress Jeri Ryan. You've probably never heard of her, unless you're a Star Trek fan. And not just any Star Trek fan, either; the episodes of Voyager that her character Seven of Nine (odd name, long story, don't worry about it) appears in haven't even screened on Australian telly yet. You have to have gone down the video shop and borrowed them ahead of time. So yes, I'm a bit of a Trekkie, yes, I'm pitiful and yes, I need to get out more. But she's so gorgeous, and unlike the other good, sexless, buttoned-down, wholesome Star Trek women, she's allowed to have prominent cleavage and attitude.

And attitude always wins points with me. One of the things that's always annoyed me about Star Trek (and indeed many other Utopian fictions) is how bland, sexless, evened-out, non-sarcastic and just plain nice they make the future. As someone who always sat in the back row at school (as well as the back pew at church) muttering cynical asides and taking everything with big doses of salt, I find that vision of the future quite disturbing. Boring even.

In the full article, she goes on about Trek's vision of the future, and also contains a few extra comments on the Jeri Ryan article. Find it all here.

[Update, 22:29 CET:] This amuses me no end, but I've already received a mail about this and noticed a thread about it at the Trek BBS - just as an explanation, when I said 'as she is one herself' above I was talking about the reporter, not Jeri Ryan. As far as I'm aware Jeri Ryan is not a lesbian. Everyone can stop mailing me upset mails now :-)

Today On TV
Christian (1:20 pm CST)
-The Sci-Fi Channel is continuing its Klingons theme week, today with the TOS episode "Friday's Child."

-Tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Trials and Tribble-Ations.' Thanks go out to Joseph Greco for this. At 18:00 BST, BBC Two will be showing TNG's 'Tapestry.'

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Rätselhafte Fenna' (Second Sight) tomorrow morning at 00:55 CET. At 15:00 tomorrow, they'll be showing 'Auge des Universums' (Sanctuary).

Trek BBS Today
Christian (1:20 pm CST)
A small selection of the finest Trek BBS topics from today:

-Did you also have problems with Voyager's Dark Frontier?

-In your area, is the Insurrection home video also missing several scenes?

Find more at the actual BBS!

Hello World!
Christian (1:19 pm CST)
You may be surprised at this update being so early, but a Dutch television station will be showing 'The Firm' in about 15 minutes, so I wanted to be ready in time for that. Strangely enough I've read almost all of John Grisham's novels, but I've never seen any of the movie versions yet. Let's hope this movie won't disappoint me as much as most of the other adaptations of great novels did...

Monday July 26, 1999
New 'A Take On Trek' Column
Christian (2:31 pm CST)
Over at the Trek Nation, we've got a new 'A Take On Trek' column, the weekly column written by Fred Shedian. This week, he talks about 'taking advantage:'

Do we take advantage of people? Do we realize what we have until it is gone? Can the item in question be a television show?

Star Trek has been on the air on a consistent basis for more than ten years now. We have not suffered through years of watching reruns as our only source of entertainment. The fans of today are lucky, as we have the luxury of seeing new episodes and adventures each week. However, has the consistent bombardment possibly taken away some of the magic the franchise has to offer? Have we overdone it?

The possible answer to this question can be found in the full column. As usual, after you've read it, please send in your comments to feedback@treknation.com so we can use them in our mailbag!

Playstation Trek Game Announced
Christian (2:27 pm CST)
Activision, the current holder of the Star Trek game license, just announced that it's working on the first-ever Star Trek game for the Sony Playstation. The game will be a space shooter based on TNG, and is supposed to ship in summer 2000:

The game places players in control of the Federation's newest single pilot fighters and challenges them to undertake a voyage that will dare them to investigate strange space anomalies, defend the Federation against alien threats and uncover the mystery which has opened a rift in the Beta Quadrant.

[...]

A visually stunning, fast-paced space shooter, the game features 30 diverse missions in which players pilot multiple vessels, including all new ships, in an attempt to defend the Federation from a mysterious threat. As they progress through the missions, players will encounter classic ``Star Trek'' characters, including The Borg and Klingons, as well as a never before seen alien race. In game energy management, shielding systems and cut-scenes enhance the overall ``Star Trek'' experience. The game is being developed for Activision by Warthog.

In the full press release, an Executive VP of Activision also tells us why he feels the game will appeal to both hardcore gamers and Star Trek fans. No word on whether the game will also be available on other platforms, though I'm trying to find out as we speak :-).

Longer 'World Tour' Stay In Austria
Christian (2:26 pm CST)
DSi Weekly and Trekflash.de are reporting that the Star Trek World Tour will be staying in Austria for a week longer, until the 15th of August. The reason is apparently the great interest from visitors, though it could also be a calculated publicity stunt, considering the same thing happened while the World Tour was in Düsseldorf.

New Alfre Woodard Film
Christian (2:26 pm CST)
Mumford - Courtesy Touchstone Pictures 'Tulok' just sent in news about a new movie starring Alfre Woodard ('First Contact,' Lily Sloane) entitled 'Mumford.' Take a look at how the Movieweb site describes the movie:

A comedy from four-time Academy Award-nominated writer/director Lawrence Kasdan, Touchstone Pictures' "Mumford" tells the story of a psychologist (Loren Dean) who hangs out his shingle in a small town and begins dispensing no-nonsense advice to an array of quirky locals. His unique style of therapy has a surprising effect on the community, sparking romance in some of the most unlikely places.

In the movie, Woodard will star as the proprietress of the town's Main Street Café, who will also be called 'Lily,' surprisingly enough. A bit more info on the film can be found by going here. Thanks go out again to Tulok for the lead!

German 'Insurrection' Video Shortened
Christian (2:25 pm CST)
Trekflash.de is reporting that the German home video of 'Star Trek: Insurrection' (Or 'Der Aufstand,' as the Germans call it) is missing about three minutes from the original version. The cuts were made in scenes which weren't considered in order for kids to watch, and had to be made in order to still get a 'For Twelve Years and Older' rating. Thanks go out to DSi Weekly for the lead.

Cynics Corner DS9 Season 7 Review
Christian (2:25 pm CST)
David E. Sluss at the Cynic's Corner has just uploaded his review of DS9's seventh season. The Cynic doesn't appear to be that happy with the execution of Deep Space Nine's final season:

A couple of episodes were real winners, but the overall package of DS9's final season was wildly inconsistent in quality and focus. As in the sixth season, the writers just refused to "shit or get off the pot" with respect to the Dominion War, allowing it to slip way too far into the background all too often. It wouldn't have required Karnak to predict the structure of this season, as it was practically identical to that of the sixth (and the third, fourth, and fifth, for that matter): Dominion-heavy opening and closing episodes, a few others here and there, and assorted stories in between that in many cases blithely ignore the fact that the entire Alpha Quadrant is at war.

[...]

This year's great experiment, the ten-parter that closed the season, and the series, has to be viewed as a failure. While it started out promising, it fell apart about two-thirds of the way in, as DS9 ended its run with a trio of poor episodes. In addition, even the better episodes of this arc suffered from bad pacing (particularly the Winn story) and less-than-worthwhile plots (like the never-ending Worf/Ezri/Julian stuff). DS9 could have gone out better than this.

The full review contains a one-paragraph review of each of the episodes, and awards them a new Cynics Corner rating. You might be interested to know, by the way, that next week's installment of our "The Franchise's Future" series of articles will be written by David E. Sluss - that should certainly prove to be interesting :-).

Cheap Insurrection VHS Tapes
Christian (2:25 pm CST)
Planet Riker is reporting that the US Blockbuster video rental chain is currently selling pre-viewed 'Insurrection' VHS tapes for $14.95. Prices may apparently drop even further as Blockbuster makes room for new releases.

Nimoy Voices TV Commercial
Christian (2:24 pm CST)
Jeff 'Koganuts' Koga just sent in a report about a new television commercial which features a voice-over from Leonard Nimoy (Spock). The 30-second commercial advertises WebMD.Com, an 'Internet-based healthcare network that connects physicians, hospitals, third-party payors, and consumers to a virtual world of medical information, tools, and services.'

Tim Russ Interview
Christian (2:24 pm CST)
Michelle Erica Green at AnotherUniverse's Mania Magazine has once again put up one of her incredibly in-depth interviews, this time with Voyager actor Tim Russ (Tuvok). The interview deals with practically everything Russ has been doing in the entertainment industry - from acting in Voyager to directing the independent feature 'East of Hope Street' to being a musician. However, the interview also contains some of his thoughts on the future of Voyager and Star Trek:

Does the Washington, D.C.-born actor expect to be directing an episode set in the Alpha Quadrant? "Bob thought we were going to get back last season, I was standing next to him when he told some reporter, 'Yeah, we'll get back at the end of last season,' and I said,'No, I don't think so," laughed Russ. "If they decide to launch a new series, that's when they'll bring us back, because they'll probably tie that in. That to me would be the strategical thing to do."

Then should we expect a new series before Voyager makes its exit? "The higher-ups would rather not have anything at all on for at least a year or two, they'd rather take a big breather, but it does not make sense to the studio," the actor suggested. "Paramount is about money, and they just want to milk the cash cow. The children who are watching the show now know Voyager. There are some growing up who haven't even seen Next Generation, they're going to know a lot about this show. They'll be able to watch the older shows in syndication, but that's not the same as growing up with the new show that's on the air. The show that follows us will bring in another generation of kids watching it for the first time. You have people growing up with Star Trek who are going to be the next series of fans."

(Begin Sarcasm) Well, it's certainly great to hear the actors now think Star Trek is a kids's show! (End Sarcasm) Find more in the full interview.

New 'New Worlds' Screenshots
Christian (2:24 pm CST)
I just noticed at Evil Avatar that Interplay has posted ten new screenshots of 'New Worlds,' their upcoming real-time strategy game set in the Star Trek universe. Am I the only one who isn't able to really get excited about 'New Worlds,' btw? To me, this looks by far the weakest title of all of the upcoming Trek games.

Happy Birthday
Christian (2:23 pm CST)
Today is the 42nd birthday of Nana Visitor, who starred as Kira Nerys on Deep Space Nine. After the series ended, she expressed a desire to star in a sitcom, though apparently nothing much is happening on that front. She's married to Alexander Siddig (Julian Bashir).

Today On TV
Christian (2:23 pm CST)
-On the Sci-Fi Channel, a new 'Klingons' theme week has started - all week long, they'll be showing Star Trek episodes featuring the Klingons. Today, at 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, they'll be showing 'Errand of Mercy,' the episode which introduced us to the Klingons.

-Tomorrow in the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's "The Assignment" at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. Major thanks go out to Joseph Greco for providing me with this information, as the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective still seems on hiatus.

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Die Ermittlung' (Necessary Evil) tomorrow morning at 00:05 CET. At 15:00 tomorrow, they'll be showing 'Rätselhafte Fenna' (Second Sight).

Trek BBS Today
Christian (2:23 pm CST)
A new week has started, and things are picking up at the Trek BBS again:

-Which Star Trek actor would you like to meet in person?

-Give us some Pointless Phrases of the Day.

As ever, we'd more than welcome your participation at the Trek BBS!

Hello World!
Christian (2:22 pm CST)
In just a short couple of hours, a new edition of the Trek Nation mailbag will be up! Yeehaa :-)!

Sunday July 25, 1999
Berman's Thoughts On Star Trek
Christian (4:33 pm CST)
The New York Newsday has an interesting new article, written by Chris Kaltenbach. In it, several Big Names in the sci-fi world (including Harlan Ellison, J. Michael Straczynski and and Majel Barrett-Roddenberyy) talk about what should be done with the science-fiction genre to take it into the next milennium. The article also contains a short quote from Rick Berman:

Rick Berman, executive producer of the three "Star Trek" sequel series, sees nothing wrong with the franchise he's been shepherding for over a decade.

"The franchise that Roddenberry created, the idea of a bunch of humans and others off on a journey of exploration, is something that is timeless," he said. "It's just a question of developing good stories and telling them."

In the full article, Berman also 'pledges' that Voyager will be around for at least another two seasons, and tells us that plans for a fifth Star Trek spinoff are still in the very early stages of development. The rest of the article is also very interesting, and offers a few good ideas on the road ahead for science-fiction television. Find it all here. Very major thanks go out to Dr. Lense for pointing me to this! By the way - if, after reading the Newsday article, you feel the need to comment - please send in your thoughts to feedback@treknation.com so we can print them in the mailbag :-).

Voyager Technical Manual?
Christian (4:33 pm CST)
At the Continuum's startrek.expertforum.ricksternbach newsgroup, Voyager's Senior Illustrator Rick Sternbach just announced the following:

This is probably as good a time as any to say that a preliminary outline for the Voyager TM has been transmitted off to Pocket Books as of today, so this post is also a chance to see who's paying attention. :) The research into all ships ever seen on Voyager begins now.

Let's hope this Technical Manual actually gets published - the DS9 Manual was fantastic, and I'd love to see one for Voyager as well. The original message can hopefully be found here, though this link will presumably only work if you have a newsreader installed. Thanks go out to Adam Bailey for pointing me to this!

DeForest Kelley To Receive Award
Christian (4:33 pm CST)
Some very good news here - the late DeForest Kelley, who starred as Leonard 'Bones' McCoy, will soon be honoured for his work on Western movies and television shows:

DeForest Kelley, who died in June, never received an Emmy or an Oscar for his more than 30 years of performances as Dr. Leonard "Bones" McCoy. But now, less than two months after his death, he is being honored for his earlier work in Western movies and television shows.

The Motion Picture & Television Fund plans to grant its Golden Boot Award posthumously to Kelley at a ceremony on August 7. The Golden Boot, established in 1982, is considered the Academy Award of the Westerns, according to the Motion Picture & Television Fund.

By receiving the Golden Boot, Kelley will join such stars as Gene Autry, Roy Rogers and Clint Eastwood, who have received the award in past years.

More on this can be found in the full report about this, which Admiral Scifi was kind enough to forward to me.

USA Buys Brooks/Lien Movie
Christian (4:32 pm CST)
The new issue of Dateline: Starfleet contains the news item that the USA cable network has acquired the rights to air 'American History X.' The film, which co-stars Avery Brooks (Sisko) and Jennifer Lien (Kes) will run in 2001. Thanks go out to Adam Bailey for the lead.

Scarlett Pomers Voyager News
Christian (4:32 pm CST)
The Official Scarlett Pomers Homepage is reporting about a new appearance by Scarlett Pomers (Naomi Wildman) on Voyager:

Scarlett was back again this week working on a scene for an upcoming episode of Voyager! The episode is called "Dragon's Teeth." Scarlett's scene is with Ethan Philips. She was very happy to be working with Ethan Phillips again!

The Scarlett Pomers site will be posting more info about Scarlett's scenes soon, so then I'll also report on it here.

Utopia Planitia 3 Mailing List
Christian (4:32 pm CST)
Charles Capps just sent in a news item about the Utopia Planitia 3 project, which has now opened a temporary placeholder site with some info on the project:

Utopia Planitia Three is a revival of the very popupar starship database of the same name, the backbone of the collection of sites known Behaviour's STZone. UP and its ill-fated, overambitious sibling, UP2, were taken down when the STZone broke apart on March 31, 1999. UP3 has been planned from the start to avoid all the situations that destroye UP and UP2. We're here to stay.

As of July 25, 1999, UP3 is aproximately 45-60 days from launch. This is a rough estimate and will be changed according to need.

Currently, the site features a sign-up form for the Utopia 3 announcement list, which will keep you up to date on the site's progress and which will even give you the chance to beta-test this project! Find it all here!

'Voyager: Elite Force' Interview
Christian (4:31 pm CST)
The people at Federation HQ, which is rapidly turning into one of the best Star Trek gaming sites, have put up a new Q&A with Raven's Chris Foster and Mike Gummelt, talking about their upcoming 'Voyager: Elite Force' game. The interview is spread over six pages, and includes some news on what parts of Voyager will be included in the game:

Federation HQ: Can you tell us how much of Voyager itself has been/will be modeled? Can you walk around the entire ship? Is it possible for you to interact with the ship's primary systems, or are the computer consoles mere decoration?

Chris Foster: We have built only the areas of Voyager that will be visited in the course of the player's missions on the ship. These areas include: the Bridge (including the Captain's Ready Room and Conference Room), Astrometrics, Engineering, The Mess hall and Neelix's kitchen, Transporter Rooms, the Shuttlebay, Sickbay and a few other areas that the player may visit if he wishes to. The player will have the freedom to wander the halls while traveling the and from these areas, however.

As far as interacting with the ship's systems, the player will be able to access a number of different consoles throughout the ship, but only for information gathering purposes. He will be able to get Mission information, his current location as well as other status reports, but he can't, say, power down the Warp Core if he fells like it.

The full Q&A contains info on the game's characters, puzzles and storyline, and even includes three new screenshots of the game.

Today On TV
Christian (4:31 pm CST)
-At 15:00 CET tomorrow, German Sat.1 will be broadcasting DS9's 'Die Ermittlung' (Necessary Evil).

Trek BBS Today
Christian (4:31 pm CST)
Even on this Sunday, we've got lots of interesting topics at the Trek BBS today:

-What are your difficulties in writing fan fiction? Are you even able to write using characters you didn't invent? Discuss it all here.

-What number is really the answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, The Universe and Everything - 42 or 47?

-Do you have any cheats or tips for Birth of the Federation, the new strategy game?

Lots more can be found at the Trek BBS, where we'd of course love your participation!

Hello World!
Christian (4:30 pm CST)
Tomorrow we'll have another edition of the Trek Nation mailbag again! Remember to send in your comments about Star Trek to feedback@treknation.com!

Saturday July 24, 1999
Community Profile Begins!
Christian (5:26 pm CST)
I already mentioned this in yesterday's 'Hello World!' already, but now it's finally here - the first installment of the Trek Nation Community Profile! In this weekly series, Amy Hightower will be interviewing leading figures from the online Trek community, so that you will finally get to know the people behind all your favourite sites! This week, she's interviewed David Henderson, founder of Trek resource site Psi Phi. Take a look at a very short excerpt from the interview:

What exactly does maintaining Psi Phi involve? How big a chunk does it take out of your life?

I don't know that I can really say how much time it takes; a good portion of time is spent in searching other Star Trek sites, filtering out information from rumors, separating believable rumors from unbelievable ones, and figuring out what to include at Psi Phi and what not to.

All in all, I'd say an average of ten hours a week are spent on Psi Phi-related stuff during television seasons, a little less during the summers (June-August).

In the full interview, David talks about everything from Paramount's visits to Psi Phi to his opinions on current Star Trek to the history of his site - find it all here! After that, please send in your comments to feedback@treknation.com - we're only just starting this series, and we'd more than love to get your input on how we can improve it! Lastly, major thanks should of course go out to Amy Hightower for actually taking on the whole Community Profile series - it is more than appreciated :-).

'Trekkies' VHS & DVD Release
Christian (5:14 pm CST)
Apparently, the 'Trekkies' domestic VHS and DVD release date is the 5th of November. No dates for a possible overseas release have been determined yet. Thanks go out to David Henderson for sending this in, who in turn got the info from 'Trekkies' fan Gabriel Koerner.

Raleigh Convention Report
Christian (5:07 pm CST)
Over at the Nation, we've put up our first-ever convention report! In this report, Kathryn Keeter and Bette Llewellyn tell us all about the recent Slanted Fedora convention in Raleigh, North Carolina. The event was attended by four TOS cast members, including Walter Koenig and George Takei:

Then Walter and George were on--and I mean "ON"! At my present age of forty-(mumble) I've seen showmanship, but these guys know how to work a crowd! Walter was playing straight man to George, but he got some deadly zingers in! I don't know which stories are cliches and which are new, but the audience had a great time. George brought up the subject of a Captain Sulu series several times, but I got the impression that this was more a running joke than anything else. Walter hopes to do plenty of stage roles in the future, amoung other work. When asked about future Star Trek spinoffs, George said he's heard the rumor of a "Star Academy 90210" type show, which would be dreadfull.George also plugged his web site: www.georgetakei.com.

More can be found in the full, very interesting report! Major thanks go out to Kathryn and Bette for writing this and, again, I'd also love to receive convention reports from more people in the future :-).

'Double Helix: Vectors' Review
Christian (5:00 pm CST)
After their review of 'Double Helix: Infection' review about a week ago, IGN SciFi have now posted a review of the second novel in the series, 'Vectors.' The book was written by Kristyn Kathryn Rusch and Dean Wesley Smith, while the review was written by Andrew Davidson. Davidson isn't that positive about the novel, to say the least:

With two authors, character development should not have been a problem. However, with three high-ranking doctors, an anti-fraternal Ferengi, and a kingly Cardassian there isn't much room for more than shallow dialogue. The focus, Dr. Pulaski, plays a major role, but she does little more than work on the killer virus, which is basically a carbon copy of the first novel's killer microorganism. The solutions to the crucial issues all come within the same chapter as the development of the issues themselves, giving readers with short attention spans pleasure, but frustrating those who favor a little plot development. As with the first novel, this installment could easily be translated to the television screen, although writing like this has brought once-great shows (read: Deep Space Nine) to their knees.

Although the main characters and location changed, not much else is new in this stale novel. The authors take too many directions with too many characters to give this book distinctive character or flavor. Vectors is as stiff and inflexible as the Cardassian characters contained within its covers.

A more in-depth analysis can be found in the full review.

Is Beltran A Native American?
Christian (4:57 pm CST)
The Official Robert Beltran Site has put up a new article by Barbara A. Block, in which she attempts to answer the above question. The article begins with this quote from Beltran himself:

For everyone who is concerned, and they should be, I'd like to clarify that I am a Native American. Mexico is a nation of Mestizos, people who are half indigenous and half European. Any Sociologist or anthropologist will tell you that we are indeed Indians. Not all Indians have feathers and war paint, and not all of 'em come from north of the U.S. border.

As people are apparently still asking this question, Block gives a detailed explanation of the Native Americans, and then especially the ones from Mexico. Find it all here.

Kate Mulgrew Kennedy Connection
Christian (4:57 pm CST)
According to a report Cleveland Live, there is a very minor connection between Kate Mulgrew (Kathryn Janeway) and the recent John F. Kennedy Jr. tragedy. Apparently, Mulgrew and her husband, Ohio Democrat Tim Hogan were to be guests at Rory Kennedy's wedding. Hagan had only met John Kennedy a few times, but he was rather close to Robert Kennedy's children. More on this can be found here. Thanks go out to Star Trek News for the link.

Seven Of Nine Alarm Clock Article
Christian (4:56 pm CST)
The people at IGN Sci-Fi have posted a news item about the season premiere of UPN's 'Dilbert,' which will feature Jeri Ryan as Dilbert's Seven of Nine alarm clock:

The second season premiere of UPN's Dilbert will feature the voice of Jeri Ryan as the aforementioned talking Seven clock. In the episode, Dilbert encounters his long lost father, Dadbert (voiced by guest star Buck Henry). No word as to how the alarm clock figures in, but the mere concept makes us giggle. [...] The Dilbert premiere is set to air on UPN October 5.

Find more in the full article.

Robert McNeill Chat Transcript
Christian (4:55 pm CST)
The Continuum has put up the transcript of last Thursday's chat with Robert Duncan McNeill (Tom Paris). Take a look at two of the most interesting questions and answers:

Kym Pantlin asks:
What does your wife/girlfriend think about Tom and B'lana's relationship on the set and what does she think about you playing in that relationship?

Robert Duncan McNeill: She knows Roxann and she knows Roxann's husband, who might beat me up, so she feels pretty comfortable about it. He rides a Harley like I do so I don't want to test it. I think Voyager will get back to the Alpha Quadrant in the spin off called Tom Paris in space... or the adventures of Capt. Proton. We're bouncing around several titles. Just kidding.

Clint Williams asks:
Robert, I'm a huge fan. I love the combo of angst and attitude that Paris displays. Being a follically challenged individual, I was wondering, and please don't be offended, but is that a hair piece you wear on Voyager. Your hair seems to have changed.

Robert Duncan McNeill:
It is NOT a hairpiece, but they put so much hairspray and products on my hair that it might as well be. It takes on a life of its own. They use a lot of product on my hair and it's been the subject of many heated debates over the years. I think the style I have now on the show is more in line with what I'd like Paris to have instead of the more bouffant version.

More can be found in the full transcript.

Starfleet Command Bonus CD News
Christian (4:55 pm CST)
Interplay's Chris Taylor has given out a bit more info on the contents of the Starfleet Command bonus CD, which will include special missions and the tools to create custom missions. When asked if these things would be made available to people who didn't pre-order, he said the following:

We'll probably release the missions and the mission scripting code at a later date. Maybe free download, maybe in an expansion disc... Just dunno at this time. No guarantees, no idea of how it will be delivered and no time line. Sorry. We're still working on that. The other contents of the bonus disc will not be made available to the general public.

In my opinion, Interplay should definitely release the scripting code for free - that's an integral part of making the game succeed. This is especially bad for non-US Starfleet Command fans, who are not able to pre-order from Interplay. You can find Taylor's original post here. Thanks go out to the Starfleet Universe for this.

New Vidiot Schedules
Christian (4:55 pm CST)
Mr. Video Productions has put up several updated air schedules, namely the sattelite feed for DS9's 'cash back-end episodes' (no, I don't know what they are either), the unofficial Voyager season 6 schedule, the Voyager rerun schedule and unofficial UPN schedule.

Today On TV
Christian (4:54 pm CST)
-According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Looking For par'Mach In All The Wrong Places' tomorrow at 16:00 BST. An hour later, they'll be showing Voyager's 'Future's End, Part One.' This might well be the last UK 'Today On TV' for a while, btw - tomorrow is the last day still listed at the Collective.

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating Voyager's 'Makrokosmos' (Macrocosmos) tomorrow morning at 03:40 CET. At 4:30 CET, they'll be repeating 'Das Wagnis.'

-At 9:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing 'Cube,' starring Nicole deBoer (Ezri Dax).

Trek BBS Today
Christian (4:54 pm CST)
Now showing at the Trek BBS:

-What are your ten most favourite actors according to ability?

-How should we develop Chakotay?

Find more topics at the Trek BBS!

Hello World!
Christian (4:52 pm CST)
There is nothing more difficult than trying to motivate yourself to do a TrekToday update, right after returning from having had a great day. It's even worse when you've just bought a great new book and are dying to read it - you'd think that would cause me to hurry up with TrekToday, but instead it seems to cause my attention to drift away all the time. Tomorrow's update should be somewhat earlier again :-).

Friday July 23, 1999
New Comics Q&A
Christian (3:53 pm CST)
At his Q&A Board over at the Nation, comics editor Jeff Mariotte has once again answered several fan questions. Take a look at one of them:

Query From: Tammy
I don't understand why new publishers always want to get new people to create TREK books when the sales were higher with great fan support in the days that DC and Malibu did the books. It seems arrogant to keep throwing out the baby with the bathwater--especially when the newer creators today aren't usually all that skilled. It takes time to learn to draw the faces right and sound like the original characters. We'd especially like to see the best guys like Peter David, Jerome K. Moore and Gordon Purcell back doing the good TREK material again.It's like never hiring Spielberg again 'cause he's already directed a bunch of movies. Wouldn't it be better to use the best people out there, along with a few new guys?

Response From: Jeff Mariotte
I understand your argument -- and I have never said we would never use those guys -- but part of our goal is obviously to do our own thing with the Star Trek license. We don't want to just do what others have done, not because that was bad but because we strive for originality and because we want to put our own stamp on things. That said, I disagree that new writers and artists can't do just as good as those who've come before. Many of the writers we have working on the line are very skilled and popular science fiction writers, some of whom, like Nathan Archer and Kristine Kathryn Rusch and Dean Wesley Smith, have quite a bit of experience writing Star Trek. Give these people, and the new (to Star Trek) artists we'll be using a chance to show that they can do it before you decide they can't. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.

More answers can be found in the full update!

Trek Composer Chat Transcript
Christian (3:47 pm CST)
At the Sci-Fi Channel, they've put up a transcript of a chat with Alexander Courage, Dennis McCarthy and Don Davis, Star Trek composers. In the chat, they of course also talked about their Star Trek music, as you can read here. Thanks go out to David Henderson for pointing me to this.

Robert Duncan McNeill Chat Report
Christian (3:41 pm CST)
Yesterday, the official Continuum organised a live chat with Robert Duncan McNeill (Tom Paris). While a transcript isn't yet up, here is my own small report of the most important things he said in the chat:

The actual transcript will presumably be posted here in a few days from now.

Rick Berman On Multiculturalism
Christian (3:40 pm CST)
Greg Braxton and Brian Lowry at the Los Angeles Times have written an article about the lack of ethnic diversity in new series premiering this fall on the major networks. The article contains quotes from several important people in the television industry, including Star Trek's own Rick Berman:

Rick Berman, executive producer of the "Star Trek"-themed series "Voyager," "The Next Generation" and "Deep Space Nine," said multiculturalism was a mandate of "Star Trek" creator Gene Roddenberry, who broke ground in that regard when he introduced the original Enterprise crew in 1966.

"When I first came into this franchise 12 years ago, I knew I was getting involved with something that was based on a vision of the future that had cultural diversity as a tent pole," Berman said. "Carrying on in that tradition was a natural progression for me."

If there's one thing for which Berman and the rest of the creative staff should be commended, it is indeed this - just like it was a great decision to go with a female captain. Find more about this issue in the full article. Thanks go out to Richard Rafter and Jeff 'Koganuts' Koga for sending this in.

'Roswell' Series Details
Christian (3:40 pm CST)
Christopher Allan Smith at Eon has written a new feature looking at the upcoming WB series 'Roswell,' which will be produced by Jonathan Frakes (William T. Riker). In the article, Frakes also comments on some recent Trek happenings, including the departure of Ron D. Moore from Voyager:

"I think it's STAR TREK's loss, frankly," Frakes says. "Ron Moore brought commitment, intelligence, professionalism and more specifically -- because I've done a lot of shows with him -- a real understanding of who the Klingons are, who the Vulcans are, and how the characters relate. I'm a huge Ron Moore fan. I can understand his decision to move on, but it's STAR TREK's loss in a big way."

The other big TREK news has been the rumors that only some of THE NEXT GENERATION cast might return for the next big screen installment. Frakes discounts those rumors immediately and is far more optimistic than what we were initially led to believe. "I think everybody will be back," he says. "Without a doubt. I don't think we're breaking this company up."

The actual article can be found via Eon's What's New page. Thanks go out to Gustavo Leao for pointing me to this.

Starfleet Command Bonus CD
Christian (3:38 pm CST)
Interplay's Erik Bethke has announced the contents of the Starfleet Command Bonus CD, which will be packaged with every copy of the strategy game ordered directly from Interplay:

  • Kobayashi Maru
  • Wrath of Kahn
  • Balance of Terror
  • Tug-o-War
  • The SFC Mission API (so you can write your own SP, Skirmish & multiplayer missions)
  • An interview with the team
  • Design notes & sketches
  • Other random bits of cool stuff Chris [Taylor] has collected for this CD...

  • The full post can be found here. Something I do wonder about - does this mean it will only be possible to edit missions if you order directly from Interplay? That would certainly classify as a Bad Idea to me. In any case, thanks go out to the Starfleet Universe for the lead.

    Decipher Buys FASA
    Christian (3:38 pm CST)
    Decipher, the publisher of the official Star Trek Customizable Card Game, has announced that it will be taking over FASA, the role-playing game publisher. Several decades ago, FASA also published a Star Trek role-playing game, which added a lot of background information to the Star Trek universe. Decipher's official press release regarding the takeover can be found here.

    Dr. McCoy And The Mugato
    Christian (3:37 pm CST)
    The new issue of Eon Magazine contains a review of two new 12" action figures - the Classic series Dr. McCoy figures and the Mugato. Reviewer Jeff Bond is the most positive about McCoy:

    The McCoy doll features an excellent likeness of the young Deforest Kelley (around "The Corbomite Maneuver" era) and comes with the usual equipment of tricorder, communicator, and a typically oversized phaser (the phasers that accompany Playmates' 9-inch TREK figures are actually close to the correct size for the 12 inch figures). McCoy's uniform shirt, unlike Spock's almost corrugated, sea blue version, is a smooth-textured light blue that looks closer to what was seen on the actual series.

    In the full review, Bond awards the figures an A.

    New 'Armada' Screenshots
    Christian (3:37 pm CST)
    Gamespot has posted ten new screenshots of Activision's upcoming real-time strategy game 'Star Trek: Armada,' more than doubling the amount of screenshots currently available. The screenshots can be found here.

    Paramount Emmy Press Releases
    Christian (3:37 pm CST)
    I wonder what the management people at Paramount are thinking - first they fail to promote Deep Space Nine well enough to get any important Emmy nominations, and now they've published two press releases in which they tell the world about the hairstyling, art direction, makeup and visual effects nominations which Voyager and Deep Space Nine did manage to secure. A press release is available for Voyager (still listing Jeri Taylor as exec producer) and for Deep Space Nine (still listing Terry Farrell as cast member).

    Happy Birthdays
    Christian (3:36 pm CST)
    Today is the 61st birthday of Ronny Cox, who guest starred as Captain Jellico in TNG's 'Chain of Command.' Yesterday was the 65th birthday of Louise Fletcher, better known as Kai Winn.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:36 pm CST)
    -According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective, British Star Trek fans who have Sky One will be able to see DS9's 'The Ship' tomorrow at 16:00 BST. An hour later they'll be able to see Voyager's 'The Swarm.'

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Profit oder Partner!' (Rules of Acquisition) at 00:15 CET tomorrow morning. At 15:00 tomorrow, they'll be showing Voyager's 'Makrokosmos' (Macrocosmos), followed an hour later by 'Das Wagnis.'

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:36 pm CST)
    It's Friday evening. How do you intend to spend it? Well, by visiting the Trek BBS and participating in these discussions, of course:

    -Would you want a 'warp-capable' alien race to make first contact with us, or would you prefer it if they'd keep to a 'Prime Directive?'

    -Find out the explanation for the world's greatest mysteries.

    -If you had the chance, would you choose to live on a Holodeck?

    Find more topics at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:35 pm CST)
    Tomorrow we'll be starting a new and extremely interesting article series over at the Trek Nation - the Community Profile. In this weekly series, Amy Hightower will be interviewing well-known figures from the online Star Trek community, beginning with Psi Phi's David Henderson. Look for the article sometime on Saturday morning!

    Thursday July 22, 1999
    Garrett Wang Upcoming Movies
    Christian (3:00 pm CST)
    Anne Vasquez just sent in the rather interesting news item that Garrett Wang (Harry Kim) will be starring in two upcoming films, according to the Internet Movie Database. The first one is the drama 'Ivory Tower', where he will appear as Mark Burton. The second one is the horror film Piranha, for which his role is not yet known. Thanks go out to Anne for sending this in!

    Austin Powers: The Spy Who Trekked?
    Christian (2:59 pm CST)
    Today's Studio Briefing is reporting some more than interesting news - apparently Mike Myers originally wanted to title his new movie 'Austin Powers 2: The Wrath of Khan,' but Paramount wouldn't allow it.

    New Sev Trek Competition
    Christian (2:59 pm CST)
    John Cook at Sev Trek has uploaded a new edition of the 'Write Your Own Sev Trek' Competition:

    Sev Trek header
    Write Your Own Sev Trek Competition - cartoon spoofs of Star Trek. Copyright 1999 by John Cook.

    Take a look at what this week's competition deals with:

    Why Cuss dumped Kneelicks.
    This is one of those questions skillfully avoided by the show - one episode they were together, all of a sudden she'd dumped him! Although maybe the real question should be why she stayed with him so long!

    You can submit your punchlines here.

    Worf As Ambassador In TNG Novel
    Christian (2:59 pm CST)
    Some exciting news today - if all goes well, we'll soon be able to bring you a special interview with Keith R.A. DeCandido, who's currently writing the TNG comic mini-series 'Perchance to Dream,' as was recently announced in WildStorm's press release. However, it turns out Keith is also working on the first novel to star Worf as Federation Ambassador to the Klingons:

    It's a TNG novel, but it's really a Worf novel. It takes place after 'What You Leave Behind...' and details Worf's first mission as Federation Ambassador to the Klingon Empire -- and the Enterprise-E does show up in it.

    The plot involves a conquered Klingon world that is rebelling against the empire -- and originally asked for Federation help when the alliance between the empire and the UFP was broken (between 'The Way of the Warrior' and 'By Inferno's Light'). Worf has to find a solution to the crisis that will keep the Federation, the Klingons, and the locals happy.

    This definitely sounds like an interesting novel! Hopefully we'll hear more about this novel, the 'Perchance to Dream' mini-series and Keith's other work once we do the interview!

    Happy Birthday Star Trek Fans!
    Christian (2:58 pm CST)
    That is, the site Star Trek Fans, not us in general. Yesterday, Julia Houston's great site celebrated its second birthday with a special article looking at the secrets of the fans:

    Dateline: 7/21/99

    Well, I honestly find it hard to believe I've been doing this job for two years now. But I find it even harder to believe that it's still so much fun. It's not the work itself I'm talking about, it's being here to chat and email and basically just share cyberspace with my fellow Star Trek fans.

    You wanna know the truth? You guys are a really fascinating bunch. And I'm in a great position to watch you all, and learn all your little secrets. Heh heh.

    The actual secrets aren't quite as dirty as this introduction makes it sound, but the full article still is a very interesting read.

    New 'Birth of the Federation' Review
    Christian (2:58 pm CST)
    Fleisher at TrekWeb has written a review of 'Birth of the Federation,' Microprose's new turn-based strategy game set in the TNG universe. Fleisher appears to really like the game:

    In case some of you have run into problems finding high-quality games that have been spun-off from STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION, your search is hereby over! I've played some cool strategy games in my time, but STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION: BIRTH of the FEDERATION takes number one on my list. Now, personally, I'm not a very big fan of Microprose's STAR TREK game line, strictly because of their high demand on the performance of the computer system each game is installed on. So I was skeptical, and ready to take the game back to the store, when I installed it. But when I did, I was transported from my computer directly into the Star Trek universe like never before!

    In the full preview, Fleisher describes the game's races, tactical sequences, and empire-building elements.

    'Men Cry Bullets' Release Date
    Christian (2:58 pm CST)
    The official Jeri Lynn Ryan fan club is reporting that 'Men Cry Bullets,' the feature film debut of Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine) will be coming to theatres on the 27th of August. A few months ago, the fan club described the movie as "a tragic comedy that uses gender reversal to demonstrate the insidiousness of an abusive relationship."

    'Blaze Of Glory' Release Date
    Christian (2:58 pm CST)
    Decipher, the publisher of the official Star Trek Customizable Card Game, has just announced a release date for the 'Blaze of Glory' CCG expansion set:

    Blaze of Glory expansion will release August 11 or 18, 1999. The expansion is being printed and will now go through the collation/packaging/distribution process. We'll soon know which day it is. Stay tuned to the Web site.

    Besides this announcement, the Decipher web site also has a new article written by Evan Lorentz, in which he looks at the so-called 'counter cards' in the Blaze of Glory set. A full explanation of precisely what these cards are can be found here.

    'Double Helix: Infection' Book Review
    Christian (2:57 pm CST)
    Andrew Davidson at the recently re-launched IGN Sci-Fi (previously the Daily Sci-Fi) has written a review of 'Double Helix: Infection' - the first book in Pocket Books' six-novel crossover series for this year. Davidson is somewhat positive about the novel:

    Perhaps the best aspect of Infection is that it reads much like any episode of Star Trek: TNG. Author John Gregory Betancourt fills the 226 pages with enjoyable moments strung together in a sequence that is easy to read and is almost ready for conversion to the television screen. The characters in Infection follow the traits demonstrated by the actors of the TV series (Worf's uneasiness around women and propensity for Klingon machismo, Data's comic attempts at humanity) in a way that satisfies TNG fans who hunger for more of the same. Much like the TV series, Infection is good entertainment for a lazy afternoon.

    A detailed review of the book can be found in the full review.

    'Course: Oblivion' Overnight Ratings
    Christian (2:57 pm CST)
    Yesterday's repeat showing of Voyager's 'Course: Oblivion' scored a 2.8 rating / 3 share, which is 0.7 ratings points up from last week. 'Seven Days,' which aired on UPN an hour before Voyager, scored a 2.5 rating / 4 share. As usual, the shows on the other five networks performed better than UPN's shows.

    Robert Duncan McNeill Chat
    Christian (2:57 pm CST)
    Tonight at 06:30pm Pacific Time, Robert Duncan McNeill (Tom Paris) will be attending a live chat at the official Continuum. The chat will begin at 06:30pm Pacific Time, though advance questions can already be submitted. If you want to know how to participate, you can find info on that by clicking this link.

    Star Trek Emmy Nominations
    Christian (2:57 pm CST)
    The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences has announced the nominations for the 51st Annual Primetime Emmy Awards and, as usual, Star Trek is nominated in several of the less important categories:

    1. Art Direction for a Series: ``Ally McBeal: Making Spirits Bright,'' Fox; ``Buddy Faro: Pilot,'' CBS; ``The Sopranos: Pilot,'' HBO; ``Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: Prodigal Daughter,'' syndicated; ``The X-Files: One Son,'' Fox.

    22. Hairstyling for a Series: ``MADtv: 402,'' Fox; ``Saturday Night Live, host Gwyneth Paltrow,'' NBC; ``Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - Badda-Bing Badda-Bang,'' syndicated; ``That 70s Show: Prom Night,'' Fox; ``Tracey Takes On ... Hair,'' HBO.

    27. Makeup for a Series: ``Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Zeppo,'' WB; ``Saturday Night Live, host Brendan Fraser,'' NBC; ``Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - Dogs of War,'' syndicated; ``Tracey Takes On ... America,'' HBO; ``The X-Files: Two Fathers/One Son, Parts 1 and 2,'' Fox.

    69. Special Visual Effects for a Series: ``Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: What You Leave Behind,'' syndicated; ``Star Trek: Voyager: Dark Frontier,'' UPN; ``Star Trek: Voyager: Thirty Days,'' UPN; ``Star Trek: Voyager: Timeless,'' UPN; ``Total Recall 2070: Machine Dreams,'' Showtime.

    Gee - Paramount must really have pushed for the Star Trek series to be nominated! 'Hairstyling!' and 'Art Direction!' Oh yes, those are a lot more fitting for Deep Space Nine's ending than, oh, 'Best Drama Series' or 'Best Dramatic Performance' or something equally insignificant. Great job, Paramount, really!

    Interestingly, William Shatner (James T. Kirk) was nominated in the 'Best Guest Actor in a Comedy Series' for his guest role on 'Third Rock from the Sun' as Big Giant Head. The full listing can be found here, while the official site of the Emmys also includes info on precisely which people working on Star Trek were nominated.

    Avery Brooks On 'BET Tonight'
    Christian (2:56 pm CST)
    A new article from the Entertainment Wire mentions that the NAACP (an equal-rights organisation for coloured people) has bought stock in the four major networks so they can better try to persuade them to represent more minorities in prime-time television programming. The NAACP made this announcement on 'BET Tonight with Tavis Smiley,' a talk show on the cable network Black Entertainment Television. According to the full article, Avery Brooks will be making an appearance on this show on Wednesday, the 28th of July. The show is shown at 11:00pm Eastern Time and 8:00pm Pacific Time, so make sure you don't miss Brooks!

    Final Rating 'The Disease'
    Christian (2:56 pm CST)
    Michael Iversen at the Star Trek Universe has put up the final ratings report for 'The Disease,' last week's new Voyager episode:

    The final rating for last week's Voyager episode is in, and Voyager did a lot better than I thought it would! Voyager's final rating was a 1.7 and nr. 108. UPN's highest-rated show was "Malcolm & Eddie" and "Moesha" with a 2.0!

    Hmm. It's been a long time since there last were two other UPN shows with higher Voyager ratings.

    Columbia Commander A Trek Fan
    Christian (2:56 pm CST)
    Reuters' Brad Liston has written a story about the launch of the Space Shuttle Colombia, which was called off for a second time in just two days on Thursday. The article talks a bit about the celebrities present, but also includes a short biography of Eileen Collins, who will be the first female commander of a space mission. In the bio, it is mentioned that "Collins, an Air Force colonel, wife and mother, grew up in Elmira, New York, watching Star Trek and Lost in Space." Nichelle Nichols (Uhura) served as recruiter for NASA for a long time - it is not at all unlikely that that Collins was made enthusiastic for this by Nichols' efforts.

    Today On TV
    Christian (2:56 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the second-season TOS comedy 'A Piece of the Action.' Apparently they're not doing repeats at 11:00pm on Thursdays anymore - today they'll be showing their 'Curse of the Blair Witch' documentary, dealing with the backstory of the mockumentary.

    -At 17:00 and at 23:30 BST tomorrow, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Shattered Mirror.' Thanks go out, as ever, to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective for this.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Das "Melora"-Problem' (Melora) at 01:45 CET. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Profit oder Partner!' (Rules of Acquisition)

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (2:55 pm CST)
    Even though it's hiatus, the Trek BBS is still very much alive - though that might also have something to do with the recently added Miscellaneous forum. Take a look at some of the active threads:

    -Should we take off registration or leave it as it is?

    -If there'd be a Deep Space Nine movie, what would it be about?

    Find more at the Trek BBS, where you're more than welcome to add a thread yourself!

    Hello World!
    Christian (2:55 pm CST)
    Lots of news today! You'd almost think hiatus is over :-).

    Wednesday July 21, 1999
    Article: Our Future Goal
    Christian (6:30 pm CST)
    At the Trek Nation, we've put up a new featured article, written by Tamara Thomas. In the article, Tamara argues for a society based on the ideals of Star Trek:

    I was watching Voyager the other day and I found myself wishing that I was part of their journey. Imagine the exciting things that would happen all the time! Contact with aliens, observing the universe up close, never knowing what happens next. I even focussed on the less esoteric parts of life on the Federation Starship Voyager. Ability seen as the determining factor for a position rather than age, sex, family connections or race. I noted the respect for other cultures and the effort put into preserving their distinctiveness and the reluctance to initiate violence.

    The more I thought about it, my wish wasn't simply,`Gee I wish I had a life just like they have on TV'. It was, `I wish my world and society was driven by the ideals and goals that govern the world of Star Trek.'

    Tamara's exploration of this society can be found in the full article, which I definitely recommend you read. After that, please send in your thoughts to feedback@treknation.com, so we can print in the mailbag! Alternatively, if this article inspired you to write an article yourself, please send in your ideas to articles@treknation.com!

    Debra Wilson Chat Transcript
    Christian (3:15 pm CST)
    Kevin Day has put up a transcript of his recent online interview with Debra Wilson, star of MadTV. Besides that, she also made a guest appearance on DS9's 'The Sound of Her Voice' as Captain Lisa Cusak, though we were only able to, erm, hear her voice's sound. Her Trek experience is very briefly mentioned in the full transcript, which can be found here. Thanks go out to Adam Bailey for the link.

    ODN Issue 89 Appears
    Christian (3:12 pm CST)
    Editor Adam Bailey has sent out volume IV, issue 13 of the Optical Data Network, the bi-weekly Trek newsletter. Take a look at what you can expect from this issue:

    This issue of Optical Data Network includes a detailed article about the Star Trek stamp, the standard suite of NewsBits, a new UK Update, and the afore-mentioned letter from Ron Moore. There's also an opinion article about the future of the Trek franchise, which takes a look at various rumors and considers some of the possibilities. And if *you* have an opinion about something and would like to write something up, please do so. Whether it's just a letter or a full-blown article, I love to hear what people are thinking.

    Rounding out this issue is a letter and a new site in the Online Spotlight, two sections which have been absent for a while. Next issue should see the return of the convention listing, provided there are any conventions left to list.

    You can find the full issue here, if you didn't yet receive it in your mailbox.

    'Survival Instincts' News Item
    Christian (3:11 pm CST)
    NOTE: Below you'll find a spoiler for the sixth-season Voyager episode 'Survival Instincts' - please click here to avoid it.

    Again, click here to avoid a spoiler for 'Survival Instincts.'

    Danielle Armbrust at the official Continuum has put up an article looking at the career of Vaughn Armstrong, who has made several guest appearances on both DS9 and TNG. The article deals with his role in the play 'Fog of War,' which is currently playing in Los Angeles. However, the article also contains the news that he will be guest-starring on Voyager's 'Survival Instincts' as "Two of Nine" - perhaps a 'brother' of Seven? Find more in the original article.

    Great 'Starfleet: Year One' News
    Christian (3:11 pm CST)
    At his Q&A Board, John Ordover just revealed a great piece of news, in response to a question about the upcoming 'Starfleet: Year One' serial:

    Query from: Hobo9898
    I have noticed that many people are complaining about the placement of S:YO chapters in SNW reprints. Could you show the chapters from all reprints somewhere on this web site.

    Response from: John Ordover
    We might do something like that at some point. As of now, though, we will be offering anyone who wants to the option of sending us a SASE in January and we'll send them back the S:YO chapter that's in the SNW reprints.

    'Starfleet: Year One' is a serial novel written by Michael Jan Friedman, detailing the first year of Starfleet's existence. Every month, a new chapter will appear at the back of each Star Trek novel. As both books in February will be re-prints of the 'Strange New Worlds' anthologies, most people weren't that excited about the prospect of having to buy one of these books again, just to read one chapter of the story. Major thanks go out to Pocket Books and John Ordover for this decision :-).

    Patrick Stewart In 'King Lear'
    Christian (3:10 pm CST)
    The Star Trek Continuum is reporting about 'Boss Lear,' an updated version of Shakespeare's 'King Lear' tragedy. The adaptation will star Patrick Stewart (Jean-Luc Picard) and Gregory Peck as members of a prominent ranch family in Texas:

    Although a final copy of the script has not been sent to TNT executives, it has been said that this version is set to take place during the Mexican revolt in the mid-1800s in Texas. No further casting has been confirmed. Stewart is set to produce Boss Lear with Robert Halmi Sr., chairman-producer of Hallmark Entertainment. Stewart also said that this is to be the first of three or four projects that they will be working on together.

    Stewart is no stranger to TNG projects - he has also been involved in the television adaptation of his 'A Christmas Carol' show and an adaptation of Orwell's 'Animal Farm.' More on 'Boss Lear' can be found here.

    Jeri Ryan On Politics
    Christian (3:10 pm CST)
    TV Guide, apparently desperate to still get some news, have posted a report looking at the political views of UPN stars. Apparently, they recently attended a UPN party for tv critics, where they decided to question a few stars from the network about their choices for the upcoming presidential elections. Besides wrestlers 'Big Boss Man' and 'The Big Show,' they also asked Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine) what she thought:

    Svelte Star Trek: Voyager star Jeri Ryan admits that she's only recently started following the race for the White House. "I'm very much on the fence, and quite honestly it took me a long time before I even started paying attention to it. I was deliberately avoiding listening to any of it. I got so thoroughly disgusted with politics in general after the last year or so."

    The full article can be found here, should you be interested in the political views of 7-foot-four 'WWF Smackdown' wrestlers.

    BotF In June Top 20
    Christian (3:09 pm CST)
    Gamespot just published the sales top-20 for computer games for the month of June. The number one spot was occupied by Mechwarrior 3, followed closely by two Star Wars titles, but Microprose's 'Star Trek TNG: Birth of the Federation' still managed to secure itself an honourable 14th place.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:08 pm CST)
    -Tonight at 9:00pm, UPN will be repeating Voyager's 'Course: Oblivion,' which first aired on the 3rd of March. Take a look at how the official Continuum describes the episode:

    'Course: Oblivion' - courtesy the Continuum, Copyright Paramount Pictures Lieutenants Tom Paris and B'Elanna Torres tie the knot but their holographic honeymoon is cut short by a phenomenon that breaks down the U.S.S. Voyager's infrastructure and disintegrates not only the ship but the crew.

    Thanks go out to the Continuum for both the description and the image, which is of course copyrighted by Paramount Pictures.

    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the second-season TOS episode 'The Gamesters of Triskelion.'

    -In the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Broken Link' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. At 18:00, BBC Two will be showing two DS9 episodes - first 'The Siege' and then, 45 minutes later, 'Invasive Procedures.' Thanks go out to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective for this.

    -German Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Die Konspiration' (Cardassians) at 02:05 CET tomorrow morning, followed by 'Das "Melora"-Problem' (Melora) at 15:00 CET.

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:08 pm CST)
    Here's your daily selection of Trek BBS topics:

    -Should we have done more to explore space over the past thirty years?

    -What are your favourite SF novels?

    -Take a look if you belong to the Trek BBS posting top-10!

    Find more discussions at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:08 pm CST)
    In just 90 minutes from now, I'll be putting up yet another great featured article at the Trek Nation, written by Tamara Thomas. The article deals with the ideas and goals surrounding Star Trek, and how they may be transferred to real life, which definitely makes for a great read!

    If you also want to have an article published and read by literally thousands of Trek fans, why not send in your ideas to articles@treknation.com? We'd more than love to publish your article - assuming it is any good, of course :-). Please do send in all your ideas to us - again, we'd be delighted to put it up at the Trek Nation!

    Tuesday July 20, 1999
    The Franchise's Future
    Christian (3:19 pm CST)
    Another Tuesday, another "The Franchise's Future" article! This week we're already able to present you with the 4th installment of our series of articles, looking at the current state of the Star Trek franchise and its future. This week's installment was written by Julia Houston, Star Trek Guide at About.com, and is a lot more positive than the previous articles:

    Let us all stare into the unknowable future without putting on our blinders or lamenting things before they've actually left us. Let's anticipate new surprises as possible sources of future joys and be happy in the knowledge that Star Trek currently makes a honkin' mountain of cool cash. And let's remember that our personal views of Star Trek cannot be taken from us, nor, thanks to syndication, can they ever be made to disappear...even if that Paris/Neelix love child turns out to be none other than Wesley Crusher!

    More can be found in Julia Houston's full article. After you've read it, please send in your comments to feedback@treknation.com so we can use them in our mailbag!

    Trek Stars Not Retiring
    Christian (3:12 pm CST)
    Kathryn Keeter just sent in a wonderful news item about the recent convention in Raleigh:

    I attended both days of the sfedora con in Raleigh this past weekend. I think the "retirement" confusion comes from the phrasing of the mailers that were sent out before the con. Dave Scott and the guests were more specific at the event--that they will not be appearing AS A FOURSOME after their contracts for this tour are completed. All four of the classic Trek guests were very clear that they would keep doing work and appearances.

    Thanks go out to Kathryn for clearing this up!

    Voyager Repeat Schedule Updated
    Christian (3:10 pm CST)
    A bit, at least. David Henderson at Psi Phi has updated the Voyager repeat schedule with one extra episode, 'Extreme Risk' on the 11th of August. The full schedule can be found here.

    Andrew Robinson Appearance
    Christian (3:09 pm CST)
    Sean Hewitt just sent in a report about an appearance by Andrew Robinson (Garak) in Nottingham, UK:

    I live in Nottingham, UK, and today (Monday July 19) Andrew Robinson (Garak) was in town at the city's Forbidden Planet SF store. He's on a promotional tour to publicise the When You Leave Behind novelisation.

    I had the briefest possible word with him and asked him whether he thought it was the last time we'd see the DS9 characters on screen. He said he hoped not. "I certainly like to play Garak again and would hate to think I never will," was the gist of what he said. He said his favourite episodes were The Wire and Improbable Cause/The Die Is Cast and that In The Pale Moonlight was a great episode and great for Garak.

    Very major thanks go out to Sean for sending in this report!

    Margaret Clark Answers
    Christian (3:09 pm CST)
    Even though he's extremely active at his Q&A Board, John Ordover certainly is not the only editor at Pocket Books. Margaret Clark just updated her board as well, and provided lots of interesting answers:

    Query from: Captain Jim
    What is New Worlds, New Civilizations?

    Response from: Margaret Clark
    New Worlds, New Civlizations is a journey across the galaxy. Hear your footsteps ring out on the decks of a Borg ship, stand beside Klingon warriors as they welcome home their hero and new chancellor, feel the heat of the deadly firestorms of Bersalis III. You can travel the walkways of Starbase 11, experience the "reality" of the Q Continuum, and breathe the desert air of Vulcan. It is our coffee table book for this year. Michael Jan Friedman is the author/guide and is aided by a remarkable collection of talented artists. You can be there!

    Query from: Robert
    Margaret, Will the encyclopedia cover the new ship designs we have seen in the last DS9 season.Like the Yeager class, the Centaur, Nova class ETC. Also, will there be new ship names, classes, and registry numbers.

    Response from: Margaret Clark
    We have all the ships from Insurrection, and most of the new ships Voyager and Deep Space Nine. Like the captain's yacht, the Dauntless, the U.S.S. Centaur, the Jem'Hadar warship…

    Lots more answers (dealing with everything from the DS9 'Milennium' trilogy to publishing terms) can be found here!

    CCG Tournament Report
    Christian (3:09 pm CST)
    At the Decipher site, there's a report of the recent CCG Invitational Tournament, which was held at the recent Wizard World convention in Chicago. The report was written by Evan Lorentz, and starts by introducing us to the players:

    Many of the competitors had tried just weeks before for the Origins Open seat won by David Bowling, and it was clear they had learned from the experience. Those who dared to play the same deck they'd used at Origins found a pack of players ready to counter them. The Space-Time Portal mass-reporting strategy favored weeks ago was shot down on several occasions by Scorched Hand and armadas. Q-bypass was used by only a handful players, and each faced a swarm of Hide and Seeks, Q2s, and other defenses.

    Perhaps influenced by David Bowling's success at Origins, Borg Ship dilemma hunting was the most popular strategy in the Wizard World invitational. Klingon, Romulan, Cardassian -- even a Federation deck built around the strategy appeared. Two players, Mike Harrington and Kris Sonsteby, even went so far as to play absolutely identical Klingon Borg Hunting decks. It was just one sign that Klingons are fast moving to challenge the Federation's "most-favored affiliation" status.

    If you want to know who won, you can read that in the full article.

    Robert Duncan McNeill Chat
    Christian (3:08 pm CST)
    This Thursday, Robert Duncan McNeill will be attending a live chat at the official Continuum. The chat will begin at 06:30pm Pacific Time, though you can already submit questions here. Info on how to participate in the chat can be found here.

    IGN Previews 'Insurrection'
    Christian (3:08 pm CST)
    Trent C. Ward at IGN PC has written a new preview of 'Insurrection,' Activision's new adventure game based on the movie. The preview also contains some info on the game's backstory:

    Here's the setup – you are Ensign Sovok, a human raised on the planet Vulcan, and a generic crew member on board the U.S.S. Enterprise. The story takes place about nine months after the events of the original film (if you haven't seen it, I'm not about to ruin it for you). As the game begins, you are assigned to be Captain Picard's shuttle pilot on a mission back to the surface of Ba'Ku. It seems like a simple task, but, as you might expect, things get a little screwed up and you find yourself a key player in the familiar Next Generation team's efforts to stop a Romulan plan to take this powerful planet for their own.

    "This is the Star Trek game where you get to play out the fantasy of being in a Star Trek episode," explains Jonathan Knight, Star Trek: Insurrection's Executive Producer, "... you'll get a chance to explore the origin of this mysterious planet from the film."

    More can be found in the full preview. Thanks go out to Evil Avatar for the link.

    New Starfleet Command Screenshots
    Christian (3:08 pm CST)
    Gamespot has made ten new Starfleet Command screenshots available, which they took from the latest version of the beta. The screenshots apparently show all the different races, and are completely new. You can find them here, together with some info on the game.

    UPN News
    Christian (3:07 pm CST)
    Yesterday, Viacom reported its second-quarter results, and held a meeting with analysts to discuss the results. According to this report from Reuters, Viacom "didn't break out figures for its struggling UPN television network, although [CEO & Chairman] Redstone and other Viacom executives predicted a turnaround beginning with the coming fall season."

    In related news, today's Studio Briefing contains a short quote from UPN president Dean Valentine, about the series that is supposed to save the station:

    UPN chief Dean Valentine butted heads with reporters Monday over his network's decision to carry professional wrestling on its schedule next fall. At a session of the Television Critics Association summer tour in Pasadena, Valentine told writers who criticized UPN's decision that maybe there was a "disconnect between you guys and the people who watch" wrestling.

    UPN is planning to air matches staged by the WWF, more raucous than Ted Turner's WCW, whose matches air on Time Warner's TNT channel. When reporters noted that the WWF has been criticized for bloody violence, obscene gestures and language, and overall "schlock," Valentine responded, "I don't think it's schlock. If you really look at the statistics, demographically, wrestling has gone much more mainstream and gone much more upscale. I think there's a disconnect between what most people over 20 or 25 think of wrestling and what your children and their children really see in it."

    Thanks go out to Jeff 'Koganuts' Koga for that bit of info. Lastly, the TV Guide web site has a quote from Brandy Norwood, who says UPN will have to come up with more money if they want her series 'Moesha' to continue. Norwood's contract ends this season.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:06 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the second-season TOS episode 'The Apple.'

    -Tomorrow, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Body Parts' at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. At 18:00, BBC Two will be showing two TNG episodes - first 'Aquiel' and 45 minutes later 'Face of the Enemy.' Thanks go out to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective for this.

    -Tonight at 01:10 CET, German Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Der Symbiont' (Invasive Procedures). At 15:00 CET tomorrow, they'll be showing 'Die Konspiration' (Cardassians)

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:06 pm CST)
    A few active discussions at the Trek BBS:

    -Is it time for another animated Star Trek series?

    -Or would a series with the Klingons be a better idea?

    Find more at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:06 pm CST)
    I really hate the Dutch climate. This afternoon, I was planning to go to the city center to see if my favourite bookstore had any of the new Star Trek novels. Unfortunately, it was raining almost constantly. Then, about an hour before the shops closed, the air cleared and the sun began to shine - until, of course, the moment I was precisely midway to the city and I was nearly washed of my bike :-(

    Monday July 19, 1999
    New Mailbag
    Christian (6:11 pm CST)
    At the Trek Nation, we've got a new edition of the mailbag, the place where you can share your opinion of Star Trek with the world! This week, we've got replies to Heather Jarman's The Future's Franchise article, 'Flight Academy' and even the first spam mail ever to reach the mailbag! Find it all here.

    Final TOS Convention Appearance?
    Christian (2:54 pm CST)
    This weekend's Slanted Fedora Star Trek convention in Raleigh is now getting lots of coverage by the mainstream media, after promoter Dave Scott said the event would be the last appearance by one of the Original cast members. Both Associated Press and the Nando Times have special stories about it, while Studio Briefing also mentions it. Meanwhile, and that's actually the main reason for this post, I'm beginning to wonder if this isn't just a cheap publicity stunt by Dave Scott - both Walter Koening and James Doohan said they wanted to go on visiting conventions after Raleigh, and it is well known that George Takei isn't planning to give them up. Unless Nichelle Nichols wants to stop doing them, we'll probably still be able to meet all of them.

    [Update:] Interestingly, Byron Amick just provided me with a link to the Slanted Fedora site, which also includes a list of upcoming conventions. One of the events announced there is a convention in Des Moines in November, which will feature appearances by.... George Takei, James Doohan, Nichelle Nichols and Walter Koenig! At least we now know that the buzz by the organiser about the Raleigh convention being their last one simply was not true - let's hope there'll also be more cons after Des Moines.

    Comics Answers
    Christian (2:53 pm CST)
    It's a new week, and a new round of answers from Jeff Mariotte, editor of the Star Trek comics line. Take a look at one of the most interesting answers he provided at his Q&A Board:

    Query From: Andrew
    Jeff how well do you know startrek? Did you see all the episodes to prepare you for this job?

    Response From: Jeff Mariotte
    I haven't watched every episode, but I've seen a lot of them. My background is in science fiction -- I've been a science fiction bookseller for almost 20 years, and still co-own a store even while working in the comics biz. I've also written science fiction, and I know many of the professional writers in the field. That background, combined with much of a lifetime's worth growing up with Star Trek, and lots and lots of research (yes, I've read just about every reference book at this point) got me ready for the Star Trek part of the job. Of course, just knowing Star Trek isn't the whole job -- you also have to know how to edit comic books.

    Find more in the actual update, where you'll also be able to ask questions yourself.

    New Starfleet Command Preview
    Christian (2:53 pm CST)
    David Chong at Computer Games Online has written a rather original preview of Interplay's Starfleet Command game - instead of looking at the game in general, he describes his experiences while playing the 'Wrath of Khan' mission:

    Yeoman's Personal Log, Stardate 8130.3
    Our captain just finished delivering a hasty briefing to the crew. I'm not sure if it was a pep talk, or an epitaph. Enterprise is already badly damaged from Khan's surprise attack with the Reliant, a capable Federation New Light Cruiser. To take us out of immediate danger, the Enterprise is limping into the obfuscating gasses of the Mutara nebula. Once we enter, shields will be only minimally functional, and all weapon systems will have to be placed on manual targeting, reducing their accuracy. It's the only chance we've got to get away from Khan's punishing attack, however, and everyone has faith in the captain.

    A gripping description of the rest of the battle can be found in the full article. Thanks go out to Starfleet Universe for the link.

    Spiner TV Movie Premieres In August
    Christian (2:53 pm CST)
    Welcome, Brent Spiner Fans! has put up the August air schedule for 'Introducing Dorothy Dandridge,' the new made-for-tv movie starring Halle Berry and also Brent Spiner (Data). The movie was made for HBO, which is where it will premiere on the 21st of August:

    Sat, Aug 21 9:00 pm EDT (HBO East)
    Sun, Aug 22 4:10 am EDT (HBO East)
    Tue, Aug 24 9:00 pm EDT (HBO East)
    Sun, Aug 29 11:30 pm EDT (HBO East)

    Be sure to check your local listings for a more accurate time. Meanwhile, a short teaser for the movie can be found on the HBO site - click here to see that.

    'A Take On Trek' Colum Launches
    Christian (2:52 pm CST)
    Today at the Trek Nation, we welcome our first regular column! Every Monday, Fred Shedian will be giving you his weekly 'Take on Trek,' offering his thoughts on how Star Trek should progress. This week, he asks the producers to take Trek 'back to basics:'

    Here we sit, debating about a legacy that Paramount, Berman, and Bragga should uphold. Perhaps it is time for us to get back to our roots. The "Outpost" idea was good for a while, but had to be modified to bring in the exploration aspect. "Lost in Space" is interesting, but boring. "Dawson's Creek" and "Melrose Place" are not what Star Trek is about, so why even open that can of worms? "Star Wars" and "Trek Wars" have been done over the past two years, and many people are sick of that. Finally, we come to "Wagon Train to the stars". Sounds like an interesting idea. It's been done twice before with unprecedented success. We know it's a hit that appeals to the people of the twentieth century. Maybe we should prepare to introduce it to the twenty-first?

    Read more in the full column, and then don't forget to send in your responses to feedback@treknation.com!

    On 'Insurrection' Game Name
    Christian (2:52 pm CST)
    Minor, but interesting news item. Activision recently announced that it would be re-titling its 'Insurrection' adventure game to 'Hidden Evil' - here's what Laird Malamed, the Star Trek brand manager at Activision had to say about this:

    We changed the name to clearly distinguish it from the story of the movie. There was some confusion if the game was the same story as the movie (which it isn't - it's the sequel). Star Trek: Insurrection will still be a part of the packaging.

    A lot of interesting info on the game can still be found in the Trek Nation's interview with the designers of the 'Insurrection' game.

    German Airdate News
    Christian (2:52 pm CST)
    The German DSI Weekly News (which I'd like rather a lot more if they'd actually give credit to sites such as TrekToday when due), is reporting about Sat.1's plans to show new Trek episodes in Germany. Apparently, the current plan is to start showing DS9's seventh season on Saturdays at 16:00 CET, starting on the 4th of September. Voyager's fifth season is currently planned for the winter of 1999/2000. The original update can be found here, courtesy of the German Trek Flash newsletter.

    Viacom Second Quarter Results Up
    Christian (2:51 pm CST)
    Viacom, the company which owns both Paramount Pictures and part of UPN, has reported the results for the second quarter of 1999, which ended on June 30. Net earnings from continuing operations jumped to $59 million, while a year ago they still had to report a loss of $20 million. The results turned out to be 50% higher than what most analysts predicted. Especially the Blockbuster rental chain, the results of homeo videos such as 'Saving Private Ryan' and 'Star Trek: Insurrection,' and MTV Networks showed very strong results - not surprisingly, UPN wasn't counted amongst these highlights. The full report can be found here, while a summary is available here.

    Today On TV
    Christian (2:51 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing 'Wolf in the Fold,' the second-season TOS episode focusing on Scotty.

    -In the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'To The Death' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST, according to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective.

    -At 0:05 CET tomorrow morning, German Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Die Belagerung' (The Siege). At 15:00 tomorrow, they'll be showing 'Der Symbiont' (Invasive Procedures).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (2:51 pm CST)
    A few Trek BBS topics to start the new week:

    -Was 'The Phantom Menace' still as good the second time around?

    -What are Voyager's best seasons?

    -Take part in a petition to give DS9 a future!

    Find more topics at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (2:51 pm CST)
    No HW today - my favourite TV show starts in five minutes, and I'm late!

    Sunday July 18, 1999
    Raleigh Convention Follow-Up
    Christian (3:18 pm CST)
    The News & Observer has put up another article looking at a convention taking place in Raleigh this weekend. The organiser of the convention is billing this as the last convention appearance by one of the Original Series cast members, though he refuses to say who. In the article, written by Todd Nelson, some of those cast members also speak on the topic:

    "It can go on as long as people are enthusiastic," said the soft-spoken Koenig, 62, who played Ensign Pavel Chekov. "But I suppose we have a finite existence. There was a time when I thought we could go on indefinitely. But the times are changing, and I can see a time when we will not be on the road. It's inevitable."

    Doohan, who played Chief Engineer Montgomery Scott, pledged to keep going as long as he can. At 79, he is the oldest living original cast member. "I don't think it will fade as long as we're alive," he said, pausing while signing autographs and sitting for pictures with fans, many decked out in elaborate homemade costumes of Klingons and other characters. "I have a responsibility to go where the fans invite me."

    The full article can be found here - thanks go out to Dick Vohlers for the link. Meanwhile, I've got a report here from Byron Amick, who recently attended a convention by the same organiser in Columbia, SC. While standing in line to get George Takei's autograph, one of the vendors apparently told him that the Raleigh convention was going to be the last appearance of Jimmy Doohan. Of course, the News & Observer article seems to conflict with that, so, again, I'd love to hear from someone who actually attended the con.

    'Gepetto' Article
    Christian (3:17 pm CST)
    At CNN.com, there's an article dealing with 'Gepetto,' the new made-for-tv Disney musical. Most of the article is an interview with Drew Carey, who plays the title role, but it also contains a photo of René Auberjonois as Professor Bounragazzo. You can find the article here - thanks go out to Richard Rafter for this.

    SFC Quickstart Manual Released
    Christian (3:17 pm CST)
    The people at Interplay have released the Starfleet Command Quickstart Manual in .pdf (Adobe Acrobat) format. Take a look at what Interplay's Chris Taylor had to say about this:

    This is the final game manual, so there are some differences (notably some of the hotkeys and the installation instructions). It does have all the screens with callouts. This is not the full reference manual, so it still doesn't explain in detail -- but it helps with all the buttons...

    Taylor's original post can be found here, while the actual manual can be download by clicking this link. Thanks go out to the Starfleet Universe for the lead.

    Star Trek Books News
    Christian (3:17 pm CST)
    John Ordover at Pocket Books just updated his Q&A Board again, answering three new questions. Take a look at the two most interesting:

    Query from: Brent
    Why do all book submissions and books written have to focus around the main characters of the series, like Picard or Sisko? What I mean is, why can't someone write a book totally from, say, a Romulan perspective?

    Response from: John Ordover
    They don't. Check out Double Helix 3 if you don't beleive me. BUT: When a new wrtier wants to come in, I need to see how they function with the regulars before I work out a story with them that's not using the regular cast.

    Query from: Antoine
    Hi once again. I had another question. Sorry to bother you so much with these questions. For the hardcover, I,Q, what is the summary of it? I can tell by the cover that it takes place sometime after the uniform change so it has to be modern time Trek. Is it anything like Q-Squared? Just wondering so I can save out enough money to purchase it.

    Response from: John Ordover
    Always glad to give someone incentive to purchase one of our books. It's a bit like Q-Squared, except that the entire multiverser is coming to an end, and only Q, Picard and Data are able to stand against it. It's told entirely by "Q" in the first person.

    Find one more answer here.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:16 pm CST)
    -Tomorrow in the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'The Quickening' at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. At 20:00 BST, they'll be showing the new Voyager episode 'Gravity.' Thanks go out to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective for this.

    -Tomorrow at 15:00 CET, German Sat.1 will be showing DS9's 'Die Belagerung' (The Siege).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:16 pm CST)
    Even though it is Sunday (traditionally a slow day at the Trek BBS, we've still got a few interesting threads:

    -Who would have won in a Fist Fight between Gene Roddenberry and George Lucas?

    -If you could choose, what sort of alien would you be?

    Find more at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:15 pm CST)
    Yes, besides the regular items, there are only 4 news stories today and, no, I don't like it either. Sundays seem to get slower and slower for news these days :-(. I was actually hoping to have a mailbag ready, but unfortunately I'm still waiting for one of our article contributors to send in her responses to mails about her article - I'll put up the new mailbag as soon as I get those. Meanwhile, do continue to send mail to feedback@treknation.com about anything at all Trek-related :-)

    Saturday July 17, 1999
    More Info On 'Sammyville'
    Christian (4:08 pm CST)
    The Continuum is reporting about 'Sammyville,' the independent film starring Chase Masterson (Leeta). The film will be shown at the second Dances With Films festival, and is apparently rather good:

    Sammyville is the compelling story of a social worker (Masterson) determined to locate a kidnapped child. She is led to Sammyville, a mysterious "outlaw" town deep in the forests of Oregon. She is warned not to venture there, but her search for the truth leads her and a secretive drifter (David Drayer) right into Sammyville. Once in the town, the two must fight to uncover the truth, all the while fighting to stay alive.

    More info on the film and the festival can be found at the full report.

    New deBoer Interview
    Christian (4:04 pm CST)
    Daring deBoer has re-printed an interview with Nicole deBoer, which first appeared in the Star Trek Monthly Magazine. One of the things she talks about in the interview is her first scene as Ezri Dax:

    Did her own newcomer status make it easier to play confused new arrival Ezri? "Yes, it definitely did, because every scene I went into in the beginning, it was , "Okay, now I'm going to do my first scene with Armin; it's the first time I've acted with Armin, and it's the first time Ezri's meeting Quark.' So that really helped a lot." Nicole has a great fondness for Armin Shimerman. "He's the one who really went out of his way to help me any time I needed to talk to him about something, or ask him how things worked around there. He's such a sweet man. He's really someone that I can turn to."

    In the rest of the interview she talks about how she got cast, her previous experiences on sci-fi shows, Trills in general.

    Starfleet Command Officer Details
    Christian (4:04 pm CST)
    In a new thread at the official Starflee Command Message Board, Interplay's Chris Taylor has given out some new info on how different officers will affect your ship's performance:

    Q. How will having certain officers affect the performace of a ship?
    A. Better officers make your ship behave, well, better. Rookie or Junior officers have negative effects. Senior officers are normal. Veterans and Legendaries have positive effects. Officers can gain experience from Rookie to Veteran. Legendary officers cannot be trained, they must be discovered.

    Q. How many different kinds of crew members can you purchase with prestige points?
    A. Security, Weapons, Helm, Science and Engineering.

    More can be found in the full post. Thanks go out to Jeh at the Starfleet Universe for pointing me to this.

    Last Convention TOS Cast Member
    Christian (4:04 pm CST)
    T. Keung Hui at the News and Observer has put up an article dealing with an upcoming convention in Raleigh, which will apparently mark the last convention appearance of one of the TOS regulars:

    Four stars from the original "Star Trek" television series will be in town this weekend for what is being billed as their last joint appearance: James Doohan, Walter Koenig, Nichelle Nichols and George Takei. Just a month after the death of 79-year-old DeForest Kelley, who played Dr. Leonard McCoy in the series, promoters said the tour will end in Raleigh, and at least one actor is retiring from personal appearances.

    [...]

    Slanted Fedora Entertainment, a Kansas-based company, brought the four actors together for a 14-state tour. While company owner David Scott won't say which actor will retire after his or her contract expires this weekend, many fans believe it is 79-year-old Doohan.

    This certainly is surprising (and sad) news. Are any of you actually going to the convention on Sunday, by the way? If so, I'd love to receive a convention report - certainlyl I'd like to hear which actor will be retiring.

    More On Sorbo Series
    Christian (4:03 pm CST)
    Steve Krutzler at TrekWeb has put up a report about the recent Sorbo series rumours, responding to TrekToday's report that a former Trek writer will be serving as executive producer on that series, and Mania Magazine's speculation that this could be Ronald D. Moore:

    TrekWeb's sources do not confirm any of this. It has been hypothesized since the news of Moore's departure from Voyager that he could become a writer for Majel Roddennberry, but this is only logical speculation. Mrs. Roddenberry did approach another big-time Trek ex-writer/producer to head up her new series, but he turned it down in favor of persuing his own development projects.

    However, I just checked with Creep, who says to stand behind his/her original report 100%: a former Trek writer will indeed be joining the new Sorbo show. Hopefully I'll be able to give you some more info on the new Sorbo series in a few weeks. Of course, do remember that none of this has been officially confirmed yet.

    'Insurrection' Rental Climbs Again
    Christian (3:56 pm CST)
    The San Francisco Chronicle, which is kind enough to publish a rental top-20 instead of a top-10, just put up the new Video Rental chart, courtesy of Billboard Magazine. 'Star Trek: Insurrection' manages to climb from no.16 to no.14 - the same spot it also occupied two weeks ago. 'Saving Private Ryan' still occupies the top spot.

    New 'Trek Minds' Broadcast
    Christian (3:56 pm CST)
    The people at Radio Trek have put up a new edition of 'Trek Minds,' their bi-weekly online radio show. This week, the show contains video reviews, listener thoughts on various Series V ideas, a report 'from the life of a Star Trek fan,' and the question of the week. You can find the new show here, though you'll of course have to understand German to enjoy it.

    TOS DVD Details
    Christian (3:56 pm CST)
    The Continuum, quick as ever, is reporting that the first Original Series DVDs will be hitting the stores on the 17th of August. Though this was already known, the article also contains a rather interesting report on precisely what can be found on the DVDs:

    The titles are in standard format, and have been digitally enhanced and remastered. Audio is in Dolby Digital format, remixed for 5.1 surround. There are English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing, as well as close captioning. Seven scene selections have been added to each episode with a thumbnail snapshot and text description identifying the scene. Original broadcast trailers for the episodes on the disc are included as well as a special "easter egg" type menu with trailers previewing the next DVD release in the set.

    These prints were made from the same D1 digital master used by the Sci-Fi channel for their releases, with the audio enhancement noted above.

    The full article also contains info on the episodes which will be included on the first two DVDs, and Guy Vardaman's thoughts on the episode.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:55 pm CST)
    -In the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'The Cause' at 16:00pm BST tomorrow, followed an hour later by Voyager's 'Remember.' Thanks go out to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective for this.

    -Tomorrow morning at 04:15 CET, German Sat.1 will be repeating Voyager's 'Der Kriegsherr,' followed an hour later by 'Die "Q"-Krise.'

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:55 pm CST)
    Here's our usual selection of Trek BBS topics for you:

    -Suppose there is a future DS9 project - What form would you like it to take?

    -A few interesting questions about Species 8472.

    Find more at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:55 pm CST)
    Don't you just love how rumours are able to get around? As you may recall, two days ago I reported about the new Kevin 'Hercules' Sorbo series, for which a former Trek writer will be working as Executive Producer, thanks to my great source Creep. Cinescape picked up the story, which in turn led to Mania speculating that Ron Moore may be the writer in question. Now I'm seeing several sites stating that TrekToday is reporting that Ron Moore will be joining the Sorbo series, while I never even mentioned his name in relation to the series. I guess this just goes to show that I myself will also have to be a bit more careful with rumours in the future - you never know what was actually reported and what was just guesswork.

    Friday July 16, 1999
    Get A Star Trek Degree
    Christian (3:24 pm CST)
    According to the Hollywood trade paper Studio Briefing, a Wales university will soon be offering a special Star Trek course:

    In an apparent attempt to lure more students into science studies, the University of Glamorgan in Wales is offering a degree in Science and Science Fiction, in which courses about Star Trek and The X-Files will be included. Although students will have to complete conventional courses in such areas as math, physics, astronomy and chemistry, the overall program, as described in today's London Independent, "appears to be a sci-fi buff's dream," with students being required to watch the Star Wars trilogy "to explore modern mythology" and Star Trek episodes "to understand the ideals of utopian societies."

    Thanks go out to Jeff 'Koganuts' Koga for sending this in!

    "Vulcan's Heart" Chat Transcript
    Christian (3:21 pm CST)
    At TrekWeb, they've put up the transcript of last night's chat with Josepha Sherman, Susan Schwartz and John Ordover, respectively the writers and the editor behind the new "Vulcan's Heart" novel. Take a look at a short quote from the transcript:

    SteveKrutzler: From Brad: You both provided background voices for the "Vulcan's Heart" audiobook, right? Were they just the miscellaneous crowd voices, or are there places where one of your voices can be clearly recognized?

    SusanShw: I can hear separate voices. I heard mine. Josepha: LOL! Yes, we were background voices! I honestly haven't LISTENED to the tape yet! Been too busy! That is WAY KEWL!

    SusanShw: Of course, I mostly heard Peter David.

    JOtrekeditor: I was there too - all our voices can be picked out of the background at one time or another.

    Find more in the full transcript.

    Write Your Own Sev Trek Competition
    Christian (3:16 pm CST)
    John Cook at SevTrek has uploaded another edition of the 'Write Your Own Sev Trek Competition,' returning to the theme of this week's Sev Trek comic (see below):

    Sev Trek header
    Write Your Own Sev Trek Competition - cartoon spoofs of Star Trek. Copyright 1999 by John Cook.

    The Mission of the X Generation. Two weeks ago, we looked at the mission of Jurassic Trek. This week, we're moving onto the mission of the X Generation which was substantially more politically correct than Jurassic Trek.

    Sevnote: This strip is specifically The X Generation, a parody of The Next Generation. The words are spoken by Captain Pickhard.

    You can submit your punchlines here.

    More Comics Q&A Answers
    Christian (3:16 pm CST)
    Wildstorm's comics editor Jeff Mariotte has once again updated his Q&A board here at the Trek Nation, offering some insight in Wildstorm's plans with the Trek line. Take a look at one of the questions asked, and Jeff's response:

    Query From: Bob Manojlovich
    1) Will you produce graphic novels such as DEBT OF HONOR? 2) I love the fact that you will not do monthlies. Will you have any stories with original characters that have never before been seen? 3) Will your "post-DS9 series finale" stories' continuity be co-ordinated with Pocketbooks' novels?

    Response From: Jeff Mariotte
    1) We have one major graphic novel in the simmering stage -- probably for early 2001. I'm not going to say anything more about it except that it'll be exceptionally cool. And of course, our Prestige Format one-shots will be about 44 pages long, so they're pretty substantial stories.
    2) I don't know if we'll be making up any new ships and crews just for the comics, but I think it's likely that you'll be seeing a lot of new characters over the next couple of years.
    3) Yes, our DS9 stuff will be co-ordinated with Pocket Books, to the extent that we'll both be working off the same post-series "bible." It may be even more closely tied than that -- they have a great editorial crew over there, and we've been talking about doing some fun stuff together.

    More can be found in the full Q&A update, which is also where you'll be able to ask questions.

    'The Disease' Overnight Ratings
    Christian (3:16 pm CST)
    According to the Wednesday ratings report at UltimateTV, Voyager's 'The Disease' rerun scored a weaker-than-usual 2.1 rating / 3 share, which is down almost a full ratings point from last week. 'Seven Days,' on one hour before Voyager, actually grabbed a 2.2, which is one of the first times ever (if not the first time) this has happened.

    Patrick Stewart At Music Festival
    Christian (3:15 pm CST)
    Patrick Stewart - The Actors' Actor is reporting about an upcoming appearance by Patrick Stewart at the Tanglewood '99 music festival:

    If you live in the Boston area of the US, you can catch Patrick amongst the many performers at the 1999 Tanglewood music festival, at the Berkshires in Western Massachusetts.

    He will be narrating as part of an all Strauss program on Friday 23rd July @ 8:30 p.m.

    You can purchase tickets and get some more info about the festival by visiting the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

    New Sev Trek Comic
    Christian (3:15 pm CST)

    Sev Trek header
    Sev Trek - cartoon spoofs of Star Trek. Copyright 1999 by John Cook.

    Convention Dedicated To De Kelley
    Christian (3:14 pm CST)
    At the Continuum, there's a new thread up reporting about the upcoming Fantasticon convention, which will be organised by William Campbell (Koloth, Trelane). Apparently, the convention will be dedicated to the memory of DeForest Kelley:

    Fantasticon '99, which is dedicated to the memory of DeForest Kelley, will also include a special memorial screening of his life and works. Campbell is glad to be celebrating the life of such a great actor. "I and the rest of those involved in Fantasticon," the convention creator said, "are honored to recognize DeForest Kelley's body of work and his special significance to Star Trek fans."

    More on the actual convention can be found here.

    Eon Reviews "Vulcan's Heart"
    Christian (3:14 pm CST)
    At Eon Magazine, there's a review of "Vulcan's Heart,' the new novel written by Josepha Sherman and Susan Schwartz. The reviewer starts of by saying how he never liked the Star Trek novels, which certainly doesn't give him a good start as unbiased reviewer. Still, after that he does go on to praise the book:

    After many years of swearing off these types of books, it's good to see that someone (or in this case two someones) knows that novels can be light yet well written. Sherman and Shwartz know the Trek universe well and create believable backdrops for Trekkers and non-Trekkers alike, as well as fleshing out some worlds we've only seen briefly. The Spock character especially feels like the one we've been followed for years, never stepping the least bit out of character. Fans will love the little bits of Trek lore, such as a young Lieutenant Picard at Spock's wedding (as mentioned in the TNG episode "Sarek") or Captain Uhura of Starfleet Intelligence. We also get yet another fate for the Romulan Commander (one of the most over-used female characters in the TREK novel run).

    More can be found in the full review, which awards the book a B, making it one of the less positive "Vulcan's Heart" reviews. It's also the only "Vulcan's Heart" review which wasn't pointed out to me by Pocket Books editor John Ordover, but I'm sure there's no special significance in the combination of those two facts :-).

    Peter David Returns To Marvel
    Christian (3:14 pm CST)
    Michael Doran at AnotherUniverse's Daily Buzz is reporting that Peter David, well-known Trek novelist, will soon be returning to Marvel Comics to contribute to a new series:

    While Marvel is still keeping a tight lid on the most of the details regarding the ongoing series spinning off from Avengers Forever maxi-series later this fall, editor Tom Brevoort has revealed the identity of the creative team for the title...and it includes a writer making his long-anticipated "return" to the House of Ideas.

    According to Brevoort, joining penciler CrissCross (Slingers) will be industry veteran Peter David, writing his first Marvel series since leaving the Incredible Hulk in 1998. "I can't get too in depth as to why I approached each of them for this assignment without revealing what the series is going to be," explained Brevoort. "But Peter certainly has a long and varied history as a writer working in the Marvel Universe behind him, and I thought it was a shame that he wasn't doing any regular work for us at the moment.

    More on the comic series, and on the reasons for Peter David joining the project, can be found by visiting the Daily Buzz.

    New Series For Trek Guest Actor
    Christian (3:13 pm CST)
    According to an article by Variety's Richard Katz, a new 'Seinfield' spin-off is in development at Castle Rock TV, the company which also produced the original series. The spin-off will apparently not revolve around any of the regular, but will instead focus on Jackie Chiles, the lawyer who always represented Kramer in his 'quixotic lawsuits' against coffee and tobacco companies. Jackie Chiles was (and will be) played by Phil Morris, who has a long history of making guest appearances on Star Trek.

    In 1966, he first appeared as a 'Boy in Army Helmet' in 'Miri,' an Original Series episode from the first season. Then, in 1984 he had a minor role in 'Star Trek III: The Search for Spock' as Trainee Foster. After that, he appeared twice on DS9, once as Thopok in 'Looking for par'Mach in All the Wrong Places' and as the rather memorable Third Remata'Klan in the Dominion War episode 'Rocks and Shoals.' His full biography can be found here, while more info on his new series can be found here.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:13 pm CST)
    -In the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'The Muse' tomorrow at 16:00 BST. An hour later they'll be showing Voyager's 'The Chute.' Thanks go out to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective for this.

    -At 03:10 CET tomorrow morning, German Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Der Kreis' (The Circle). At 15:00 tomorrow, they'll be showing Voyager's 'Der Kriegsherr' (Warlord), and at 16:05 'Die "Q"-Krise.'

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:13 pm CST)
    It appears that things are definitely getting more quiet at the Trek BBS, now that there are no new episodes or big rumours to discuss. Still, take a look at some of the active threads:

    -Get to know your fellow Trek BBS regulars.

    -Take Spockarific's new Star Trek Quiz.

    -Is Seven of Nine to blame for Voyager's lower ratings?

    Find more topics at the Trek BBS, now cruising along with 404 members!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:12 pm CST)
    Things that are not smart, part 1: putting a meal in your microwave, and then forgetting to take off the lid.

    Can you say 'BOOOM'? What a mess... :-(

    Thursday July 15, 1999
    Sorbo Series Scoop
    Christian (4:23 pm CST)
    Creep just provided us with some interesting info again. You may remember that Kevin Sorbo recently departed from 'Hercules' to star in a project produced by Majel Barrett-Roddenberry. Well, according to Creep, a well-regarded former Trek writer will be taking up the mantle of Executive Producer on Sorbo's new series. This new series, by the way, will NOT be 'Starship.' More info as I get it, hopefully.

    First Comics Q&A Reponses
    Christian (4:16 pm CST)
    At his new Q&A board at the Trek Nation, Star Trek comics editor Jeff Mariotte has put up his first answers to your questions. Take a look at two of the most interesting questions and answers:

    Query From: Mike Urvand
    Are you planning on working with Pocket Books and Peter David to do a Star Trek: New Frontier series? I think that seeing these characters, in a regular monthly setting, would be the next best thing to seeing them on the screen. Thanks for listening and for bring Trek back to comics!

    Response From: Jeff Mariotte
    We're in ongoing discussions with both Pocket Books and Peter David, and have every intention of bringing New Frontier stories to comics. Don't count on a regular monthly -- for now, anyway, we're not planning any monthlies. But we'll make sure all the New Frontier fans get to see those characters in the pages of Star Trek comic books.

    Query From: Bob Manojlovich
    For how long does Wildstorm have the licence for Star Trek comics? Will we see New Frontier comics that are based on Peter David's novels?

    Response From: Jeff Mariotte
    We'll be doing Star Trek comics beginning in November 1999, and running through most of 2001. After that, we'll see. And, yes.

    Lots more info can be found in the full Q&A, which is also where you'll be able to submit questions yourself!

    Write Your Own Trek Script
    Christian (4:05 pm CST)
    At TrekWeb, a new feature has been launched called 'Scriptwriting for Star Trek.' In it, David Harkey explains how to write a script for Star Trek:

    Whether you're an amateur or seasoned writer, this website should be an informative resource for you. The website is divided into 7 sections which will take you through each step of writing a teleplay.

    The feature provides answers to questions such as "Are there any special rules or guidelines" and "What Terminology should I know," and is really quite useful if you intend to submit a Trek script to Paramount. You can find the feature by going here.

    New Playmate Toy Info
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    The Raving Toy Maniac has updated again, this time providing info on several upcoming Playmate Toys. The Toy Maniac got this info from the new official Playmates release schedule:

    Apparently not so canceled after all, the fourth wave of 9" Target Exclusives is scheduled for an October/November '99 release. The assortment will include the long-awaited and long-lamented 9" B'elanna Torres and Seven of Nine in her cobalt blue outfit.

    Kay-Bee's first assortment of 12" Exclusives is scheduled for a November/December 1999 release. The assortment features Kirk and Spock in fan-favorite, and much overlooked by Playmates, red movie-era Starfleet uniforms. These are specifically being billed as coming from Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.

    One product however, has bitten the dust. The 4.5" "Gamesters of Triskelion" Twin Pack, planned to include Chekov, Uhura, and shirtless Kirk with collars of disobedience, has been canceled.

    You can find the full release schedule by going here.

    Get Your Pic In 'Starfleet Command'
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    YnrohKeeg at StarTrekGames.Net has posted some rather interesting news about Interplay's new Starfleet Command game:

    A number of the "Regulars" at MPlayer's SFC lobby are trying to get fan-made portraits for SFC. Jinxx, the MPlayer MAN, has asked me to put a call out for the artists among you to create portraits for the different races. What we're really looking for is pictures of people, either Federation, Klingon, Romulan, Lyran, Hydran, or Gorn. Don't just take a screenshot from an episode. You have to do it yourself. When we get enough candidates, I'll send them to Jinxx, who will in turn pass them on to MPlayer execs and Interplay, and possibly even Paramount (which is why we don't need people submitting THEIR stuff).

    If your picture is approved by these folks, it may show up next to nicknames everywhere! One final note. The pictures must be 120x120 pixels, and have to be viewable by everybody. No Romulan heads impaled on bat'leths with green blood spurting out of them. Remember, it's a family show. Now get busy, artists! Send your submissions to me, and I'll collect them for a week or two until we have enough.

    Info on where you can send your submissions to can be found here.

    Nielsen Ratings Database Moves
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    Great news today! Greg Fuller's Star Trek Nielsen Ratings Information Database, the web's only archive of the three modern series' ratings, has moved to a new location: the Trek Nation! As of now, you'll be able to find all his reports from the past few years at the new address of http://www.treknation.com/nielsens/, which is also where you'll find ratings reports for Voyager's season six, once that starts in September. Obviously, I'm very happy that Greg has decided to join us, and I'd like to wish him a warm welcome :-). You can find Greg's own announcement and explanation of the move by going here.

    John Ordover Answers Again
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    Pocket Books editor John Ordover has updated his Q&A Board again, offering new interesting info about the Star Trek novels. Take a look at a few of the questions and answers at his Q&A board:

    Query from: Matt
    Perhaps you would be kind enough to tell me what STTNG: The Forgotten War (future title) will be about. The cover looks intriguing (although you shouldn't judge a book on its cover.)

    Response from: John Ordover
    It's about Picard et al running into a lost crew from Captain Pike's day, still fighting an endless war.

    Query from: Brian
    John, I just read where you told someone "you're just going to have to let this go now" regarding the parts of Starfleet:Year One in the reprints of SNW I and II. Why should he? This is an absurd idea. Thank God I haven't yet purchased them. It would make more sense to include a line at the end of December's parts saying they'll be continued in February. With all due respect, despite what you said about taking into account the opinions on the BBS, you obviously don't take them into account or respect them.

    Response from: John Ordover
    No, I respected them, I just didn't agree with them. Not the same thing. And since the decision has been made, there's not point in going over it and over it.

    More can be found at the actual Q&A board.

    "Vulcan's Heart" Chat Today
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    Today at 10:00pm Eastern Time, TrekWeb will be organising a live chat with Josepha Sherman and Susan Schwartz, the authors of the new "Vulcan's Heart" novel. Info on how to participate can be found here, while you can already submit questions here.

    Birdsong Designs Star Trek Stamp
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    Kevin Dilmore at the Star Trek Continuum has written a very interesting article dealing with the upcoming Star Trek stamp, which will be unveiled by the U.S. Postal Service in September. Take a look at a description of the stamp itself:

    Capturing the story of Star Trek for the stamp is an image of the U.S.S. Enterprise as envisioned by artist Keith Birdsong, who has previously designed stamps as well as original art for Pocket Books' line of Star Trek novels. The starship is shown in fore view making a graceful orbit of Earth, a swirling of clouds below and a gleaming delta-shaped Starfleet emblem in place of the sun.

    "I had to come up with something that says Star Trek at a glance," says Birdsong from his Oklahoma home and studio. "The original Enterprise is the iconic image of the show, and the insignia-as-sun is something I had done before in a couple of paintings but was asked to take out for one reason or another. This time, I got away with it. "To me," says Birdsong, "this says Star Trek."

    The full article contains info on how the stamp was first conceived, and also has a plug for upcoming merchandise (including t-shirts, mugs and key chans) which will feature the stamp. Find it all here.

    Starfleet Command Retail Box Info
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    Erik Bethke, lead designer of Interplay's 'Starfleet Command' game, recently made a post to Interplay's SFC Forum, talking about the contents of the Starfleet Command retail box:

    1) Game CD (of course)
    2) BIG manual 162 pages!
    3) Mini-manual 24 pages
    4) Laminated reference card
    5) POSTER (Game-aid chart of weapons and ships in the game)

    He also mentioned that the Interplay pre-order version will ship with a special bonus CD included, which will feature a set of 'classic missions.' The original post can be found here - thanks go out to Starfleet Universe for the lead.

    More On Combs
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    News about this was updated continuously over the past 24 hours here, so I'll reiterate: Yesterday I posted a report from 'Creep', who told me that Jeffrey Combs (Weyoun) was going to star in 'The Lord Of The Rings' as Wormtongue. Ten minutes later, it turned out that Ain't It Cool News had scooped me by about an hour. A little while later, Cinescape also posted a report about this, stating that, while Combs was up for the role at one point, a representative of his now denied he would be involved.

    A few hours ago, AICN updated again, saying that '[their] source on that rumor, a very very strong source, still says the story is good. I guess we'll see. Also, the word is that the entire cast should be announced at some point in September.' Find the full AICN report here.

    Alfre Woodard Film On Video
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    According to a new press release from the Video Software Dealers Association, on the 20th of July the film 'Down in the Delta' will be released for rental. The movie stars Wesley Snipes and Alfre Woodard, who also starred in 'Star Trek: First Contact' as Lily Sloane.

    The 'Please Help Me' Contest
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    As some of you have already noticed, the 'link to us' page on TrekToday, the Trek BBS and the Trek Nation is currently not functioning. The reason for this is that, unfortunately, there aren't yet any banners or buttons for those three sites, as my own banner design skills are rather limited. Therefore, I thought it might be a good idea to organize a contest, whereby you can design a banner for these sites! The 'rules:'

  • If you design a banner, it should have a size of 468 by 60 pixels. Preferably, the banner should be no more than 20 kb.
  • If you design a button, it should have a size of 88 by 31 pixels.
  • The submissions should not be using any copyrighted materials.
  • All banners and buttons should be sent in to christian@trektoday.com.

  • Those are all the 'rules'! You're free to take part as many times as you want to, and design banners and buttons for all sites - as a matter of fact, I'd love that! The really cool prizes you'll be able to win is that you'll be able to see your banner on our 'link to us' page and on sites linking to us, my eternal gratitude, and a mention of your name here at TrekToday. Yes, I know you would have preferred a Ferrari, but unfortunately I'm not that rich :-). Thanks in advance to anyone who decides to help me out on this - I'd really more than appreciate it!

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the TOS episode 'Obsession.'

    -Tomorrow in the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Shattered Mirror' at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST, according to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Die Heimkehr' (Homecoming) at 1:10 CET tomorrow morning. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Der Kreis' (The Circle).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    The usual selection of Trek discussion topics:

    -How come Trek 'fans' complain when Trek re-hashes stories and at the same time get mad when various Trek incarnations try something new and different? Discuss this topic here.

    -How do you feel about the recently announced Voyager telemovie?

    -Are there any X-Files Fans at the Trek BBS?

    Find more topics at the BBS itself!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    If you have any design skills, please do take part in the banner design 'contest' - I'd be extremely happy with your help :-)!

    Wednesday July 14, 1999
    Comics Q&A Launches!
    Christian (4:26 pm CST)
    I've been promising this for months, but now we've finally been able to launch it - the special Q&A board where you're able to ask questions to Jeff Mariotte, editor of the Star Trek comics line at WildStorm. The reason why we launched it now is that WildStorm and DC Comics just sent out an official press release, announcing what they're planning with their Star Trek license:

    A run-in with a new ninja-like race; a war over natural resources; and a device that has the potential to cause interdimensional havoc -- STAR TREK comic book fans are in for surprises beyond this galaxy. WildStorm and DC Comics announced today plans for the new line of STAR TREK comics with the launch of the Prestige one-shot entitled STAR TREK: VOYAGER(R) -- FALSE COLORS, scheduled to be released in November of 1999.

    [...]

    "We're really trying to make our own mark on the world of STAR TREK," says Jeff Mariotte, WildStorm's Senior Editor and editor of WildStorm's new STAR TREK line. "We've tapped a number of creative talents who are brand-new to STAR TREK comics, and I'm certain that this new line will more than live up to the success of WildStorm's previous innovative licensed titles."

    The full press release can be found by going here, which is also where you're able to ask questions to Jeff Mariotte, if you scroll down a bit further. By filling out this handy form, you can type in your questions which will then be sent to Jeff. After that, keep checking back often until your question is answered!

    Jeffrey Combs In LORT?
    Christian (5:04 pm CST)
    Some very interesting news here: 'Creep' just told me that Jeffrey Combs (Brunt, Weyoun) is rumored to have inked a deal to play Wormtongue in Lord of the Rings, the upcoming film trilogy based upon J.R.R. Tolkien's 'The Fellowship of the Ring.' The official web site can be found here, though, quite obviously, this doesn't yet contain any mention of Combs.

    [Update, not ten minutes later:] Just when I thought I finally had a scoop, it appears Ain't It Cool News beat me to it by about one hour :-(. Their report about the casting can be found here. Many thanks still go out to Creep - he/she has at least proven to be reliable :-).

    [Update, Thursday, 12:10 CET:] Cinescape just announced that, while Combs was in fact up for the role at one point, a representative for the actor stated that he will not be appearing in 'Lord of the Rings.'

    Roddenberry Award Nominations
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    Jason Davidson at Star Trek News has announced that voting has now commenced on this year's Roddenberry Awards, his site's yearly recognition of the best of Trek:

    With the close of the 98-99 season for both Voyager and DS9, and the release of the film Star Trek: Insurrection, voting has once again been opened for this site's annual Star Trek Awards, in which we honor the best of Trek this year. Only the movie Star Trek: Insurrection and episodes from Deep Space 9 (Season Seven) and Voyager (Season Five) are eligible.

    You can vote here.

    TOS DVD Release Date
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    Michael Faries just sent in a news submission about the upcoming Original Series DVDs, of which a release date has just been announced. According to this page, both DVDs will be released on the 17th of August, at a recommended retail price of $19.99. The first DVD will store 'Where No Man Has Gone Before' and 'The Corbomite Maneuver,' while the second DVD will store 'Mudd's Women' and 'The Enemy Within.' Thanks go out to Michael Faries for reporting this!

    'Bliss' Final Ratings
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    Michael Iversen at the Universe just posted the final ratings for 'Bliss,' last week's Voyager episode:

    The rating for last week's Voyager episode is in, and Voyager got a 2.0 and was nr 102. Voyager was UPN's highest-rated show along with "Malcolm & Eddie"! Other UPN ratings are "Between Brothers" and "Moesha" with a 1.9, 7 Days with a 1.8 and "Clueless" with a 1.7!

    Info on how the WB performed can be found in the full report.

    Chase Masterson In Festival Film
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    TrekWeb is reporting that the film Sammyville, starring Chase Masterson (Leeta) will be playing at the Dances With Films film-festival in Los Angeles:

    The movie will be shown at 9:30pm on July 26th (Monday) at Laemmle's Monica 4-Plex (1332 2nd Street, Santa Monica, CA). General admission costs $7.00. A Festival Pass costs $100.00 and includes admission to all screenings AND gets you into the Filmmaker's Lounge and all parties. For more information call their info line at (310)394-9741. If you'd like to make reservations call (323) 656-1974.

    More information on the film festival can be found on their web site, while info on the actual film 'Sammyville' can be found here. Read the original TrekWeb report by clicking here.

    'Blaze Of Glory' Official Rules
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    At the Decipher web site, the official rules for the 'Blaze of Glory' Customizable Card Game expansion pack are now available. The rules are currently available in PDF- and in HTML-format, and can be found by going here. As a special bonus, they've also provided a card strategy page for the new 'Evasive Maneuvers' card - you can find that here.

    'Star Trek: Armada' Preview
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    Jeff Tom at the Computer Gaming Review has written a new preview of 'Star Trek: Armada,' Activision's upcoming real-time strategy game set in the TNG universe. Amongst other things, the preview tells us about the game's graphics and gameplay:

    What about graphics? Armada uses a heavily modified Battlezone engine, with code from Mechwarrior II, Interstate 76', Civilization, and Dark Reign. The team composing Armada will also receive help from those who've worked on all of those outstanding titles. While you will have a bird's eye view of the action, the ships will move in full 3D space. You'll be able to perform a variety of maneuvers including rolls, loops, a fully 3D physics engine to go along with Armada, with ideas taken straight from Star Trek.

    Multi-player will also be in out in full force in Armada. What the team is trying to do is create an equal playing field for all races and to stop the rush. While this is a lofty goal, which even Blizzard was not fully able to do in Starcraft, the team believes they can achieve success. You can play over the Internet and LAN in Armada with up to eight players and any combination of races in co-op, FFA, and even CTF.

    Find more in the full review. Thanks go out to Federation HQ for the link.

    More On Leonard Nimoy Docu
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    A new press release from Siggraph 99 contains some more info on 'The Story Of Computer Graphics,' the new feature-length documentary which is narrated by Leonard Nimoy:

    The film, shot entirely on state-of-the-art High-Definition Video, follows the 45-year evolution of digital technology showing automobile and aircraft design, weather patterns, flight simulations, and medical advances as well as the awe-inspiring computer-generated imagery seen in classic feature films such as ``Jurassic Park,'' ``Terminator II,'' ``Toy Story,'' ``Tron,'' and many others.

    According to the film's director Frank Foster and line producer Steve Silas, ``Leonard Nimoy is an icon who has become a household name in both television and feature films. We are privileged to have him as part of this feature documentary film which will be seen by his fans and audiences around the world who appreciate how motion picture technology has advanced over the years,'' they jointly said.

    A bit more info on both the film itself and Leonard Nimoy's participation in it can be found by reading the full press release at Yahoo!

    Today On TV
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    -At 9:00pm, UPN will be repeating Voyager's "The Disease." Take a look at the official Paramount description of the episode:

    'The Disease' - courtesy Vidiot, Copyright Paramount Without Starfleet medical clearance and in violation of interspecies protocol, Ensign Harry Kim has a passionate love affair with an exotic alien explorer, Derran Tal of the Varro species. But the escapade puts both the Voyager crew and the Varro species in Jeopardy when Kim and Tal become biochemically interdependent.

    Thanks go out to the Continuum for the description, and Mr. Video Productions for the trailer screenshot, which is of course also copyrighted by Paramount. Trivia fans might be interested to know that 'The Disease' was the first first-run episode I reported on in 'Today On TV,' back in February.

    -Today at 10:pm ET/PT, cable network TNT will be showing the fifth Crusade episode, called 'Ruling From The Tomb.' This episode was written by Peter David, best-selling Star Trek novelist. Thanks go out to David Henderson for the info!

    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the second-season TOS episode 'The Deadly Years,' which is the one in which Kirk, McCoy and Scotty all become grumpy old men.

    -Tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Hard Time,' which is one of the best episodes of the whole series. Thanks go out to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective for this.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Blasphemie' (In The Hands Of The Prophets) tomorrow morning at 01:35 CET. At 15:00 they'll start showing the second season, in the form of 'Die Heimkehr' (Homecoming)

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    At the Trek BBS, we've now got an amazing 400 members! Take a look at some of the active discussions all those members are participating in:

    -How do you like Star Trek: The Magazine?

    -Are you also addicted to Birth of the Federation?

    -Talk about the new 'The Saga Begins' song from Weird Al Yankovic.

    Find more at the Trek BBS, where you can also register to be a member - why not be our 401st member?

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:58 pm CST)
    Let me present you with a pictorial showing the DUMBEST HUMAN BEING IN THE KNOWN UNIVERSE:

    Tour de France, courtesy nu.nl

    Tour de France, courtesy nu.nl

    Tour de France, courtesy nu.nl

    What sort of idiot decides to stand in the middle of the road, 800 meters before the finish of the tenth stage of the Tour de France, just to make a photo of the Guerini, the eventual winner of this stage? Thanks go out to Nu.nl for the photos.

    Tuesday July 13, 1999
    3rd "The Franchise's Future" Article
    Christian (3:19 pm CST)
    At the Trek Nation, the third installment of our "Franchise's Future" series of articles is now available! This week, the author of the article is Heather Jarman, best known for her excellent column at the Starfleet Journal. Heather's article is perhaps the most gloomy yet:

    When Alexander the Great surveyed the great city of Alexandria, seeing her glorious harbor and shimmering library, his heart thrilled with the hope that his mark would live forever, standing as a monument to future generations. Eternal life seems to be the quest for every human whether the journey takes the form of art, empire or literature. Before I'm worm food, I'd know I'd like to know I've earned a footnote on a granite wall someplace, just to let future generations know "Heather was here."

    Like people, empires grow up and eventually deteriorate. History has no favorites. The mighty and the small topple with equal finality. Once an empire ripens, rotting soon follows. The historical cardiogram records each effort a civilization takes to save itself until it at last flatlines. Our fictions use the same paradigm. In Star Trek: Insurrection, concern is expressed for a quickly "ripening" Federation--a Federation weakened by the Dominion War, a Federation maturing and being corrupted by forces within and without. Even that nasty Risa-Vanessa Williams/Terry Farrell pottery episode played on the premise that the Federation was becoming a futuristic Rome: fat, indulged and decadent. How fascinating that the "Real Life" Trek world is in a similar situation.

    Star Trek, the franchise, is a well-ripened fruit, my fellow fans, and whether the fruit can be plucked from the tree and preserved for another season, or whether it will mold and serve as spawning ground for flies has yet to be seen.

    You can find the full feature by clicking here. If, after reading it, you'd like to comment on the article, please send it to feedback@treknation.com so we can print it in our Mailbag!

    Robert Picardo Chat Report
    Christian (1:49 pm CST)
    NOTE: Below you'll find spoilers for Voyager's sixth season. Click here to avoid reading those spoilers and be transported to the next update (even though that contains spoilers as well).

    Again, click here to avoid being spoiled!

    Yesterday (or for me: early this morning) I attended the first Trek celebrity chat in my life, namely the Ultimate TV chat with Robert Picardo (the Holodoc). What surprised me an awful lot was that there were so few people attending - only about 9 or 10, while no more than 5 people stayed the whole time. I always thought those chats were attended by at least fifty people. In any case, the chat was great fun, and Picardo provided us with the following information:

  • When asked about the Starfleet Academy rumours, he said "he's heard them denied." He knows there's a new series in development, but he doesn't know what it deals with.
  • He'll soon direct a Voyager episode, which will start filming on the 26th of August, though his preparations will start one and a half week in advance. There may be a story idea for that episode now, though he doesn't yet know what it is. He's not sure he wants to direct more in the future - "In the director's guild of America the highest heart attack rate was in the 1 hour directors demographic."
  • The second show is a big Borg show. They'll have lots of glitz in the first few episodes and everyone's favourite aliens (Borg, Klingons)
  • He doesn't believe there's any thruth to the rumors of season six being the last. He thinks they'd have to do something very wrong with the fans to loose fan support.
  • The Holodoc/Seven relationship will be explored further. He'll have a few scenes with Seven which would be like most other men's dreams.
  • Filming for the fourth episode starts soon (I think today, though I (Christian) can't remember exactly anymore)
  • His wife turns 45 today, though she looks 32 :-)

  • Unfortunately the above are not literal quotes - I'm afraid I forgot to save the actual transcript :-(.

    Brannon Braga On Star Trek
    Christian (1:48 pm CST)
    NOTE: Below you'll find spoilers for Voyager's sixth season. Click here to avoid them.

    Again, click here if you do not want to know about Voyager's sixth season.

    Editor Steve Hockensmith at Cinescape recently had a chance to talk with Brannon Braga, executive producer of Star Trek: Voyager. First of all, Braga talks about the recent 'Flight Academy' rumours:

    "We've been chatting about a new series. We chat about a lot of things. I just can't comment on it. If I could tell you anything firm, I would, but everything's very nebulous right now. I will say to you that I don't know where that [Flight Academy] rumor started. If there is a new Star Trek series, I highly doubt if it will have anything to do with Starfleet Academy. I would be shocked if that turned out to be the next series."

    He then goes on to stress again how premature all of this is, and that there 'hasn't been any kind of official talk with the studio about it.' This does sound an awful lot like spin control to me - we've heard numerous times the new series is already very much in development.

    Braga also shared some info on Voyager's sixth season, telling us that no radical changes for the show are planned. He does tell us about a two-hour Voyager telefilm, which is planned for November, and which will introduce a new major menace to the Delta Quadrant. In the episode, Voyager will encounter the ruins of an ancient civilization that was destroyed 500 years ago. Voyager discovers a vast army of these aliens in stasis, and when they wake up and are intent on taking over the galaxy again, Voyager needs to put the genie back in the bottle.

    Lastly, Braga provides us with detailed info on the first four episodes. I'd love to quote that here as well, but unfortunately then this update would get even larger than it already is :-). You can find the info for yourself by visiting Cinescape.

    UK Insurrection Rental Release
    Christian (1:47 pm CST)
    According to Patrick Stewart - The Actor's Actor, the release date for the rental video of 'Star Trek: Insurrection' in the UK is Monday the 19th of July.

    Starfleet Command Beta 2 Report
    Christian (1:46 pm CST)
    YnrohKeeg at StarTrekGames.Net has published a new Starfleet Command beta report, looking specifically at the updates to the game in the second beta version. The updated graphics are one of the things he talks about:

    The most obvious (and awesome) graphical change are the targeting reticles for the various races. Each race has its own reticle, of course, and every one I've seen is shockingly cool. So far, I've only seen the reticles for the Federation, Klingons, and Hydrans. All of them are very, very impressive.

    For some reason, shuttles now glow yellow instead of blue (as in the previous versions). Not sure why this is so, but there it is. The color change doesn't impact the game positively OR negatively. It's just different. NO biggie at all. Also, missiles are colored purple. This MAY be because I'm only using the big, fast, "whupass" warheads. The missiles MAY be color coded according to type, but I'm not gonna risk the safety of my crew just to find out. (wink)

    There have been minor modifications to the interfaces. Again, no biggie at all. They just look a little cooler. For example, the font on the mine display looks like a true-type Arial font. Just looks cooler. No impact on gameplay, but cool nonetheless.

    More can be found in the full report.

    Vulcan's Heart Chats
    Christian (1:46 pm CST)
    Today, Josepha Sherman and Susan Shwartz, authors of the new "Vulcan's Heart" novel, will be attending a live chat on AOL. The chat begins at 10:00pm Pacific Time at Keyword: Star Trek Club.

    On Thursday, TrekWeb will be hosting a live chat with Sherman and Schwartz. That chat will begin at 10:00pm EDT, though you can already submit questions here.

    TV Barn Braga/Moore Article
    Christian (1:46 pm CST)
    Ho Hum. John Zipperer at TV Barn has put up a new edition of his "Zippy's SF Loft" column, in which he looks at recent happenings in the SF world. This week, he looks at the departure of Ronald D. Moore from the Voyager staff, and the internet reaction to that. In his article, he also mentions TrekToday and the Trek Nation:

    Trek Today has been at the eye of the storm, serving as more of an unfiltered bulletin board than as journalism. Read enough of the bickering there and you start to have more sympathy for William Shatner telling fans to "Get a life." Therein lies a good lesson that simply because people write articles about an event, they are not automatically journalists. One service the site did perform is the publication of John Bierce's feature article, "The Franchise's Future," [sic - TT] in which the writer takes to task the irresponsible spreading of stories based not on fact but on rumor, speculation, and innuendo.

    Needless to say, I don't agree with that part of the article (and I'm hoping most of you don't either), but you can decide for yourself by reading the full article. Of course, if you do agree with the TV Barn article, do let us know at feedback@treknation.com so we can improve the site. Thanks go out to Jim Wright for pointing me to this.

    Star Trek Gourmet Coffee Review
    Christian (1:45 pm CST)
    At the Daily Sci-Fi, there's a new report from John Windberg, who recently attended the WesterCon convention. While there, he picked up three bags of 'Star Trek: The Gourmet Coffee,' available at $4.50 a bag. When asked about the taste of "Raspberry Assimilation", "Tribble's Choice", and "Klingon Raktajino" (the three flavours available), he replied 'They taste really gross.' Pictures of the actual coffee can be found here.

    Starfleet Command Demo Review
    Christian (1:45 pm CST)
    Glock at the newly re-designed Strategy Planet has put up a review of the Starfleet Command demo, which was made available by Interplay a few weeks ago. Glock was apparently impressed by the demo:

    Would I recommend this demo for download? Most definitely. This demo does exactly what a demo should do. It whets your appetite and leaves you wanting more. You can sample the Klingon side of things, but it just doesn't have the same feel as commanding an Enterprise-class vessel. Get the demo, and save some dollars for the retail version, it will definitely be worth it.

    Click here to read the full review.

    Great Voyager Ratings News
    Christian (1:45 pm CST)
    UK Picard Fan just sent in a news item which will certainly sound fantastic to everyone following Voyager's ever-declining ratings. Apparently, the June 14-20 edition of Variety magazine contained an article, based on research by Nielsen Media, which had Voyager as a top ratings performer:

    UPN's "Star Trek: Voyager" tops the list of shows on each net that most efficiently reach one of the key upscale viewer groups - adults 18-49 living in homes with the head of household having completed four or more years of college.

    Apparently, in the table which outlines the research findings, Voyager is given an index of 140 (although it doesn't say what this equates to), ahead of ABC's "The Practice" on 136, Fox's "Ally McBeal" on 136 and NBC's "Frasier" on 133. Major thanks go out to UK Picard Fan for sending this in - this certainly is very good news!

    New 'Voyager: Elite Force' Shots
    Christian (1:43 pm CST)
    Billy 'Wicked' Wilson at VoodooExtreme has posted two all-new screenshots of Raven's upcoming 'Voyager: Elite Force' shooter. The first shot shows a Voyager cargo bay, where a Scavenger alien just beamed in (unfortunately we can't see it). The second shot is more interesting, as it shows the player firing a new weapon at a Borg, while inside a Borg environment. This second shot actually looks a bit disappointing - the Borg cube isn't nearly as claustrophobic as I'd like it to be.

    F. Murray Abraham In 'Muppets'
    Christian (1:43 pm CST)
    Variety's Joe Leydon has written a review of 'Muppets In Space,' the sixth full-length feature film showcasing Jim Henson's puppets. The film apparently focuses on Gonzo, who has a bit of a personality crisis after encountering Noah (F. Murray Abraham):

    The opening dream sequence, in which a skeptical Noah (F. Murray Abraham) refuses to admit Gonzo aboard the Ark because he doesn't have a mate, underscores the poor little guy's main concern: There is no one (or nothing) quite like him on Earth. His mood lightens only when he begins to receive cryptic messages (``R U There'') in his Capt. Alphabet breakfast cereal. Based on this and other evidence, Gonzo snaps to the idea that maybe there's a good reason he's unique -- that is, maybe he's the offspring of extraterrestrials.

    F. Murray Abraham starred on 'Star Trek: Insurrection' as bad guy Ahdar Ru'afo. Interestingly, his last project before 'Muppets in Space' was the mini-series 'Noah's Ark,' in which he starred as Lot. More info on the Muppets movie can be found here - apparently the movie even includes a few Star Trek references.

    Happy Birthdays!
    Christian (1:42 pm CST)
    Today is the 59th birthday of Patrick Stewart, who is of course best known for his role as Captain Jean-Luc Picard aboard the Starship Enterprise. As I learned yesterday, today is also the 42nd birthday of Linda, the wife of Robert Picardo.

    Today On TV
    Christian (1:42 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the TOS episode 'The Changeling.'

    -Tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Rules of Engagement,' according to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective. At 18:00 tomorrow, BBC Two will be showing TNG's 'Ship in a Bottle.'

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Der undurchschaubare Marritza' (Duet) tomorrow morning at 01:35 CET. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Blasphemie' (In The Hands Of The Prophets).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (1:42 pm CST)
    The usual selection of interesting Trek BBS topics:

    -What is your favourite Star Trek theme song?

    -A great story idea from a Trek BBS member: how about having Section 31 on Voyager?

    -Who is the most undervalued Voyager character?

    Find more at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (1:41 pm CST)
    This morning I received a mail from Amazon.com which was truly nice. About 8 months ago, I subscribed to their 'Eyes' service, which is supposed to inform you when new books matching your criteria are available for shipping. I thought that this was a cool feature, which could hopefully help me to report here on TrekToday when new Star Trek novels were available. Unfortunately, over the next six months I got precisely one mail, and I wasn't exactly that impressed with them.

    Until this morning, that is, when they sent me a mail with as subject 'A gift from Amazon.com.' In it, there was a gift certificate worth $10! I re-read the mail about four times, but there really didn't appear to be a catch - Amazon did actually want to give me ten dollars! Of course, when visiting their site again I found out that shipping costs from the US to the Netherlands are at least $6.00, but still. I'll probably order the new Sherman / Schwartz novel "Vulcan's Heart" - with the $4.00 discount I'll only have to pay $12, which is a lot less than the $30 my local bookstore will ask for it when it finally arrives here. Thanks Amazon!

    Monday July 12, 1999
    Rene Echevarria Interview
    Christian (3:48 pm CST)
    At the Great Link, they've put up an interview with DS9 writer Rene Echevarria, which first appeared in the British Star Trek Monthly magazine. The interview contains some interesting thoughts from Echevarria on planning the Final Chapter:

    "We tacked our way towards where we wanted to go, and started throwing balls up in the air, as we had fewer and fewer episodes and certain decisions had been made and certain doors had been closed and certain doors left open, we started to have more urgency and fewer options, and even as we were moving into the final episode, we weren't exactly sure what it meant. Dukat and Sisko in some kind of climactic conflict that plays off his Emissary thing with the Pagh-wraiths, that's all we knew. We didn't know what it was going to be, even in the final two-hour episode, as we sat down to break [work out] the story. There were a couple of days during that time when I was a little scared that we had painted ourselves into a corner, but somehow we escaped without leaving too many footprints."

    Find more here.

    New "Vulcan's Heart" Review
    Christian (3:40 pm CST)
    Pocket Books editor John Ordover just sent in a news submission about a new "Vulcan's Heart" review, written by Kevin Lauderdale of the Kevindex. Lauderdale was rather impressed with the novel:

    In the summer of 1997, I lavished praise on Josepha Sherman and Susan Shwartz' STAR TREK novel, VULCAN'S FORGE. Like VULCAN'S FORGE, their new novel, the sequel VULCAN'S HEART, tells the story of Spock's life and adventures after the "death" of Captain Kirk. It brings together (none of these are spoilers since all of these elements are on the dust jacket): a young Jean-Luc Picard and his ship "Stargazer"; Saavik; the female Romulan commander from TOS: "The Enterprise Incident"; and the "Enterprise-C" from TNG: "Yesterday's Enterprise." And it's long: 378 pages. It takes that many pages to tell a story this complex. This is epic Trek at its best.

    The full review cannot yet be find on the Kevindex itself, but it is also extremely positive. Thanks go out to John Ordover for sending this in!

    Mailbag, Take Two
    Christian (3:34 pm CST)
    Unfortunately yesterday I provided the wrong link when reporting about the new edition of the Trek Nation mailbag. This is the correct link, which I really recommend you check out - as usual, most mails are extremely interesting. Also don't forget to send in your thoughts about anything at all related to current Star Trek happenings to feedback@treknation.com!

    Starfleet Command Editing News
    Christian (3:33 pm CST)
    Jeh at the superb Starfleet Command news site Starfleet Universe sends in word about their first hosted site:

    Our first hosted site has moved in! Robert Drum's SFCEdit is now hosted here on Starfleet Universe! )! For those of you who haven't heard of SFCEdit, it's a great editor utility for the Starfleet Command Demo, which currently allows you to edit many of the ship systems of the Federation Heavy Cruiser. Future versions will allow you to edit other ships included in the demo.

    Find the SFCEdit site here.

    New Garrett Wang Interview
    Christian (3:33 pm CST)
    The Great Link has re-printed an interview with Voyager star Garrett Wang (Harry Kim), which first appeared in the British Star Trek Monthly magazine. In the interview, he talks about how he feels he is the 'Delta Quadrant Cheerleader:'

    "Of all people, I would consider myself the cast cheerleader. I want the best of everything for Voyager: I want the ratings to be phenomenal. I want all the storylines to really further the characters. When I look at our cast, I'm amazed by everyone's individual talent and I really do think we have a pretty good chemistry together. I want that to come out in every episode we do. So I try to do what it takes to encourage the show along. I spend my free time in the editing room and in the production meetings, and try to keep myself involved in the show as a whole. I also want to try to direct at some point. And that, for me, keeps boredom from coming in. Because honestly, although there are some wonderful episodes like "Timeless", Kim spends most of his time sitting back - as the other characters have to - waiting to come to bat."

    In the full interview, which was written by David Bassom, Wang also talks about the episode 'Timeless' and the rumours about a Wang/Ryan relationship.

    Jeri Ryan Signs For 7th Season
    Christian (3:33 pm CST)
    NOTE: Below you'll find spoilers for Voyager's sixth season. Click here to avoid reading those spoilers!

    Again, click here to avoid some (minor) spoilers for the seventh season.

    Some great news can be found at the Official Jeri Lynn Ryan Homepage: Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine) has signed an extension guaranteeing her commitment to Star Trek: Voyager through a seventh season! Ryan said this at the recent SciFi Expo convention, where she was onstage for a Q&A session. Take a look at some more info which Jeri Ryan provided at the convention:

    Jeri recently spent three days back in full Borg costume and make-up for an upcoming episode, though she didn't explain the reason. ['Survival Instinct'? - TT]

    Contrary to Internet rumors, Jeri is not involved in the X-Men movie.

    More can be found by visiting the news page of the official JLR Homepage.

    Ordover Updates
    Christian (3:32 pm CST)
    As is usual on Mondays, Pocket Books editor John Ordover has updated his Q&A board, once again providing us with some interesting looks at the Star Trek books universe:

    Query from: Bob
    1) Will the crew of the Challenger be all new characters, or will we be familiar with any of them? 2) If so, will they be from TVTrek or booktrek? 3) Has the class of the Challneger been established? If so, would you tell us?

    Response from: John Ordover
    The crew of the challenger has not yet been determined, nor has the class of the ship.

    More can be found at his Q&A Board. Perhaps more interesting is a post at Pocket's Star Trek Books Bulletin Board, in which he talks about the recent Campbell Award conference, which he also attended. The subject of this year's discussion at the conference was 'SF in movies and on television and its effect on book publishing,' which of course Ordover also had several thoughts on - you can find that here.

    Robert Picardo Live Chat
    Christian (3:32 pm CST)
    Tonight at 9:00pm Eastern Time, Ultimate TV will be hosting a live chat with Robert Picardo, who stars as the Holodoc on Star Trek Voyager. You do first need to register to be able to chat, so you might already want to do that here. Thanks go out to CARPE, Picardo's official fan club, for this info.

    Massive Star Trek Game Feature
    Christian (3:31 pm CST)
    The folks at 3DGaming.net have put up a rather massive new feature looking at the upcoming Star Trek games by Interplay and Activision. As is almost usual for a Star Trek game feature nowadays, they begin by telling us how all previous games were bad:

    Yes, it's true; Star Trek games have never really been hits. The onslaught of cheap clones bearing the Star Trek name have only brought shame to the franchise and not been worth the $50 companies make you pay for them. I'm sure all Star Trek fans have downloaded and tried the ST: Klingon Honor Guard demo. It was supposed to be one of the first good Star Trek games. Using the Unreal engine, it developed a great deal of hype. But what happened? To put it nicely… it sucked! It was a half-done job using the Unreal name to try to bring it popularity.

    And how about the much famed ST: Starfleet Academy? It was probably the most sought after ST game ever, boasting to put you behind the captains chair and in total control of a starship and its crew, waging war on alien races while making peace with others. Too bad it only turned out to be a cheap XvT clone in which the only thing that mattered was who could tap the fire key faster. Oh yeah, and there was that old training officer guy who kept telling you "your score is inadequate… you'll have to repeat the mission." I must have seen that FMV so many damn times that I just wanted to take a photon torpedo and stick it up his… err, anyway, the game turned out to be a big disappointment.

    Starfleet Academy was actually rather good, IMHO, but that may just be me. You can find the full preview here - thanks go out to Evil Avatar for the link.

    'What You Leave Behind' Novel Review
    Christian (3:31 pm CST)
    Michelle Erica Green at AnotherUniverse's Mania Magazine has put up a review of the novelization of 'What You Leave Behind,' written by Diane Carey. Green notes how the novel is different from the actual episode:

    It's also apparent that this book was based primarily on a written script, not a televised episode. Several of the lines in the novelization vary from the ones which were aired, and some of the descriptions of character behavior differ markedly from the screen version. Worf's reaction to learning that Dax and Bashir have consummated their relationship, for instance, is pleasantly paternalistic on the show, but darkly pained in the novel. Sisko gets bossier with Yates, Odo acts more physically affectionate with Kira. He's also more aggressive with the female changeling, aided by descriptions of his internal thoughts and decisions.

    In the end Green decides she rather likes the novelization, as you can read here.

    Six New 'DS9: The Fallen' Screenshots
    Christian (3:31 pm CST)
    GA-Source has published six new screenshots of the Collective's upcoming 3D action game 'Deep Space Nine: The Fallen.' All screenshots show Benjamin Sisko, standing in front of several rather great looking environments. You can find the screenshots here - thanks go out to Blue's News for the link.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:30 pm CST)
    -Today at 7:00pm Eastern Time (and apparently not at 11:00pm), the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the Original Series episode 'Journey to Babel,' the episode which introduced us to Spock's parents.

    -According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Accession' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST.

    -Five minutes after midnight, German Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Meuterei' (Dramatis Personae). At 15:00 CET tomorrow morning, they'll be showing 'Der undurchschaubare Marritza' (Duet).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:30 pm CST)
    Things are getting more active at the Trek BBS again, now that the weekend is over. Take a look at some of the topics currently being discussed:

    -Is Flight Academy really that bad?

    -Can you help a cancer charity find The Next Generation promotional stuff?

    -What do you think could have been done differently in the Original Series if it had had a higher budget?

    Find more active threads at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:30 pm CST)
    If all goes as planned, the news update script I'm currently using should get a major overhaul by the actual creator of the script... I can't tell yet precisely which things will be changed (mostly because we haven't yet figured it all out), but I can tell you it's going to be extremely great! If anyone's got any suggestions, please send them my way.

    Sunday July 11, 1999
    New Mailbag
    Christian (4:49 pm CST)
    I just put up the second regular edition of the Trek Nation Mailbag! This week, the mailbag contains the first reactions to Valentine Winter's 'Defending Flight Academy' article, more mails about the Voyager cancellation rumours, and some final thoughts on the Ron Moore departure. Jim Wright and Greg Fuller also respond to the mails we received about their featured articles. You can find all that and more by going here.

    You may have noticed that the mailbag is slightly late today, and that my own mailbag responses aren't as, erm, insightful as I would like them to be. The reason is that the mailbag takes up a rather large amount of time - especially considering the volume of mail that is sent in. If someone would like to take over mailbag answering duties, please send me a mail at christian@trektoday.com and you'll have my eternal gratitude :-).

    Second Starfleet Command Beta
    Christian (2:25 pm CST)
    Killer Bee at TGA just posted the following Starfleet Command news bit:

    Interplay's Warren Schultz has just e-mailed me that the discs for SFC Beta Two have been shipped. They're being mailed via Airborne Express (FedEx to ROWorld) and all the testers should have their copies by the end of next week.

    People not lucky enough to participate in the beta test can of course still download the demo.

    Second DS9 Farewell Communicator
    Christian (2:17 pm CST)
    Communicator 123Gustavo Leao sends along word of the new edition of the Star Trek Communicator, the magazine of the official Star Trek Fan Club. This issue contains part two of their 'Bon Voyage DS9' feature, which says farewell to the third Star Trek series. The new issue contains interviews with people such as Herman Zimmerman and Michael Westmore, a look at all the people you usually only see as names on the credits, and interviews with several supporting cast members. The magazine also contains stuff which isn't necessarily connected to DS9 ending, including one story from the 'Strange New Worlds II' collection and Rick Berman's thoughts on the future of Star Trek. More info on what the new issue contains can be found here.

    Boxleitner A Trekker
    Christian (2:09 pm CST)
    The Swiss Daily Trek newsletter is reporting that Bruce Boxleitner (Babylon 5, Sheridan) considers himself a Star Trek fan. At the Fed Con 7 convention, he confessed that it had been his dream for a long time to have a role on Star Trek.

    Another Stafleet Command Preview
    Christian (2:07 pm CST)
    Moyzan at Games Weekly has written a preview of 'Starfleet Command,' the new Interplay game which every site in the world seems to want to preview. This preview is quite comprehensive, though, and even contains a bit of info on the Starfleet Battles game on which Starfleet Command is based:

    SFB, ECM, EM, PH-1, HB. Sound familiar? Yup, you're right, this is Star Fleet Battles terminology. SFB has finally jumped to the computer world, and is being designed by Quicksilver and published by Interplay. For those poor souls who did not have the chance to play SFB these past twenty years, let me briefly explain what it is. SFB is a board game that simulates combat between ships from the Star Trek original series and adds some new races not seen on TV. You can control every aspect of your ship, ranging from tractor beams and transporters, to space mines and myriad other things. Just to give you an idea of the complexity of the game, if you put all the rules in one book, it would be around 400 pages long! And that's not counting all the ship's systems displays! Don't panic, though… Star Fleet Command is much easier to learn, even though it might be confusing at the start for the novice.

    The full preview can be found here. Speaking of Starfleet Battles, is there anyone else who remembers 'Prime Directive,' the role-playing game set in the SFB universe? I own several of the source books, but I seem to be the only person in the world who stil remembers the game. Does anyone have any info on what happened to it? Drop me a line! Thanks go out to StarTrekGames.Net (still without a functioning domain) for the link.

    UK Trek Ratings
    Christian (2:05 pm CST)
    After two weeks, the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective has once again posted a British Star Trek ratings report. Voyager appears to be doing extremely well in the UK:

    With no ST on terrestrial channels, Voyager was the only rated Trek on TV, on Sky One. Obviously the lack of other Star Trek encouraged more people to watch Voyager, as it got a great #4 ranking, 0.71m viewers - only just behind The X-Files (by 0.02m viewers).

    I wish the series was performing as well in the US. In any case, find the original report here.

    EMH Mark 2 Enters Drug Program
    Christian (2:05 pm CST)
    Andy Dick, who guest starred in Voyager's "Message in a Bottle" as the EMH Mark 2, has asked a judge in the Los Angeles Superior court to consider him for a drug diversion program. This could clear him of the charges brought against him for owning marihuana and cocaine, and for crashing his car into a telephone pole while driving under influence, according to a report at Jam! Showbiz:

    Dick, 33, had been scheduled to enter a plea Friday to charges including cocaine and marijuana possession and hit-and-run driving. Instead, he appeared Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court and asked to be sent to the drug program.

    A decision is expected to be handed down at Dick's arraignment Aug. 12.

    Find more in the original report.

    Today On TV
    Christian (2:05 pm CST)
    -Tomorrow in the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'The Bar Association' at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. At 20:00, they'll be showing the new Voyager episode 'Bride of Chaotica.' Thanks go out to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective for this.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be showing DS9's 'Meuterei' (Dramatis Personae). As you may recall, about a week ago I mentioned here that Sat.1's episode info page showed a picture of Voyager - they've now changed it to show Deep Space Nine. Did anyone actually mail the station about this?

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (2:05 pm CST)
    A few interesting topics at the Trek BBS:

    -What are your favourite last words of Star Trek characters?

    -Read a proposal for a new Star Trek series called Absolution.

    Find more at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (2:03 pm CST)
    Heehee! Take a look at how a new spam mail I received this morning started:

    By DELETING internet email you are wasting just one keystroke. Just think of how many other resources are wasted by receiving standard mail... (paper, trees, etc...!) Support internet email and help save the planet!!!

    Yes! Everyone send out spam! You will help make Planet Earth a better place!

    P.S.1 - Yes, there really is an incredibly small amount of news today.

    P.S.2 - If you visit TrekToday during the first hour after this update, you won't see a link to the new mailbag yet - I'm finishing it up as we speak, but I'm not quite ready yet.

    Saturday July 10, 1999
    Defending Flight Academy
    Christian (4:18 pm CST)
    Valentine Winter strikes again! In a new featured article at the Trek Nation, he looks at the recent 'Flight Academy' rumours, and tells us why such a series might actually be a good idea:

    'Flight Academy' would offer us a look at a part of the Star Trek Universe which we haven't ever been able to see: the Federation itself. Yes, we've seen Starfleet, but how much do we know about the actual Federation? What is its political structure? How do the people live on Earth? What sort of society have we humans formed in the 24th century? We probably know more about how the Klingons live than about how we humans life!

    In a way, 'Flight Academy' could be the perfect continuation to Deep Space Nine. That series focused on the political situation between all the big Alpha Quadrant powers, and showed us how Bajor was rebuilt after the Occupation. In 'Flight Academy,' we could see the political situation in the Federation itself, and how it tries to recover from the Dominion War.

    More can be found in the full article. If, after reading it, you have any comments to make, please send them in to feedback@treknation.com so we can print them in our mailbag!

    New Starfleet Command Preview
    Christian (4:10 pm CST)
    David Finn at Games Domain Review has written a new preview of 'Starfleet Command,' Interplay's new real-time strategy game. Finn's preview is quite in-depth, and covers everything from the game's roots in the Starfleet Battles game to the various game options. You can find the preview here, thanks go out to Starfleet Universe for the link.

    Voyager Game Designer Interview
    Christian (4:06 pm CST)
    The Computer Gaming Review has published an interview with Jeremy Statz, level designer on the 'Voyager: Elite Force' game. In the interview, Statz mostly talks about the technical aspects of designing the game, though he also provides some info on how the actual game will play:

    CGR: What type of maps are you working on now?
    JS: Currently I'm working on the Scavenger Mission. Early in the game, you defend Voyager from invading aliens called Scavengers. You soon discover that you need something from their ship. You then infiltrate their vessel, which is made up of a variety of different looking space ships. So, basically, I'm making spaceship interiors at the moment.

    CGR: Are there any innovative uses of the levels to affect gameplay? Such as the corridors in Voyager to travel through and find different routes, escape foes, etc.?
    JS: Like I mentioned above, different missions will have different objectives, and the way you accomplish them will vary. One mission you might be in a run and gun fight for your life, the next you may be sneaking around and gathering information, the next you might be guiding a few team members through an alien ship. We're trying to mix gameplay types up some to keep things varied and interesting.

    Find more in the full interview. Thanks go out to Blue for the link.

    Four New Series V Ideas
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    The people at the Daily Sci-Fi have posted the results of their 'Invent a Sci-Fi TV Show!' contest. Not surprisingly, a large part of the submissions dealt with Star Trek:

    You know we received a ton of entries suggesting new Star Trek shows as well--and rather than try to pick the best out of this numerous category, we're just going to summarize some of these suggestions for you.

    You can find the new series ideas (with titles such as 'Discovery,' 'Smuggler' and 'Temporal Sentry') by going here.

    Peter David Writes 'Crusade' Episode
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    David Henderson just sent in the following news submission:

    Best-selling Star Trek novelist Peter David has written an episode of "Crusade", the "Babylon 5" sequel series. In the US, the episode "Ruling From the Tomb" will air on Wednesday, July 14, at 10pm ET/PT on the cable network TNT. It will be repeated the following Monday at approximately 11pm ET/PT.

    Thanks go out to David for sending this in!

    Star Trek World Tour Webcam
    Christian (3:51 pm CST)
    Issue 36 of the German Daily Trek newsletter contains a report about a webcam which has been installed in Vienna, current location of the Star Trek World Tour. On the webcam, which frequently changes location, you'll be able to see the visitors in at the Tour, and perhaps even catch a few glimpses of the special events happening at the Tour. You can find the webcam here. Don't bother with the actual World Tour itself, though - when I visited it in Düsseldorf in December, it was the biggest disappointment I had in a long time.

    Foreign 'Insurrection' Box Office
    Christian (3:46 pm CST)
    Hans Bushan sends along word that the printed edition of the Hollywood Reporter contains an update on Insurrection's foreign box office performance:

    Insurrection has made 1.1 million dollars in Italy after 3 weeks (it has been number 1 for all 3 weeks). It has also made 413,000 after 6 weeks in Sweden. There is no total overseas boxoffice mentioned, but based on the last total ($43.2) reported by Variety after the first weekend in Italy, the overseas boxoffice should now be over 44 million.

    Thanks go out to Hans Bushan for sending this in!

    William Shatner ABC News Video
    Christian (3:45 pm CST)
    SCIFI Headquarters has put up a digitized video clip of a recent appearance by William Shatner (James T. Kirk) on ABC News. The video can be found as a 9.1 MB Real G2 video by going here.

    'The Longest Trek' Movie
    Christian (3:45 pm CST)
    The Daily Sci-Fi has a report up by Ben Sian, who talks about the DragonCon convention. While there, he met Grace Lee Whitney (Yeoman Janice Rand), who told him about her plans for a film adaptation of her 'The Longest Trek' book:

    She's got a new book out called "The Longest Trek." More than just your typical Star Trek-era memiors, Ms. Whitney candidly discusses her descent into drugs and alcohol and her eventual return from the bottom. This is the stuff of which Oprah interviews are made, and she's hoping to be on Oprah sometime very soon. The book's currently in its third printing and she hopes to make it into a movie.

    With that said, here's your chance to be a screenwriter. Ms. Whitney openly solicited people to adapt her book into a screenplay. She's looking for some good screen treatments.

    Info on how where to send the screenplays to can be found here.

    New Trek Book List
    Christian (3:45 pm CST)
    Psi Phi webmaster David Henderson just posted an announcement at the Simon & Schuster Star Trek Books board, talking about his own personal influence on the Star Trek book line:

    You know of the list of all the Star Trek novels, in the back of the books, yes?

    Assuming you've taken a look through it, you may have noticed typos ("David" Galanter wrote TNG #31?), mislistings ("Insurrection" is a TOS novel? "The 34th Rule" and the "My Brother's Keeper" books are unnumbered?), and missing books ("Mission to Horatius", to name one). That is changing. I made a new list, with the typos fixed, the mislistings righted, the missing books included, and a slightly different format with a couple of new categories.

    I am told that the September paperbacks (the "Pathways" reprint and "The Forgotten War") will be the first books to include the new list. When I started working on the list, I expected the November books to be the first ones to have the list, so the list actually will actually have a little foreshadowing for the first couple of months.

    Find the full post here.

    'Flight Academy' For Real?
    Christian (3:44 pm CST)
    In his new Mr. Showbiz column, Jeffrey Wells responds to the recent statements by Paramount in which the Flight Academy rumours were called 'Bogus.' According to Wells, Flight Academy is still very much in development:

    She may be denying this because Paramount execs may want to make the announcement themselves later on (or some such motive) but she's oil-slicking all the same. I double-checked with my sources Wednesday, and the story is 100 percent accurate. The spokesperson's claim that 2002 is the earliest a new Trek pilot will hit TV sounds like a good ballpark figure. Paramount head Sherry Lansing has said it will take about two years.

    I'm going to make a major turnaround here - I do now actually believe 'Flight Academy' is the current project being worked on at Paramount. I still don't believe the 2002 premiere date, though. What would Berman and Braga need three years of development time for, twice as much as the other series had? Hopefully we should get some more info on this soon.

    'Insurrection' At 16th Place
    Christian (3:44 pm CST)
    The San Francisco Chronicle has put up a top-20 of video rentals, which also still contains the 'Insurrection' video. According to the top 20 (which was compiled for the July 10 edition of Billboard magazine), 'Insurrection' dropped 4 places to no. 16.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:44 pm CST)
    -Tomorrow in the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Sons of Mogh' at 16:00 BST. At 17:00 tomorrow, they'll be showing Voyager's 'The Chute.' Thanks go out to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective for this.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating Voyager's 'Vor dem Ende der Zukunft' (Future's End) tomorrow morning at 03:50 CET.

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:44 pm CST)
    It's Saturday, so not really much is happening at the Trek BBS today. Still, a few threads which you might find interesting:

    -What are your reactions to Ron Moore's last post to AOL?

    -Is Star Trek Earth-centric?

    -Did you see the A&E Biography of William Shatner yesterday?

    Find more at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:43 pm CST)
    Tomorrow we'll be putting up the second regular edition of the Trek Nation mailbag - remember to send in your mails to feedback@treknation.com!

    Friday July 9, 1999
    Eon Moore Articles
    Christian (3:54 pm CST)
    The people at Eon Magazine have put up two very interesting articles dealing with the departure of Ronald D. Moore from the Voyager writing staff. The first article, written by Christopher Allan Smith, looks at the reasons for Ron Moore's departure and the rumours surrounding it:

    When contacted by phone for this story this week, Moore told EON, "I just decided it's time to move on. I don't know that I really want to go beyond that publicly. It really just didn't work out for me and VOYAGER and I just decided to leave. I can say that I've seen a lot of the rumors too and I can say it didn't have anything to do with any scripts. There was no creative issue that drove me away. I saw various things about it being a reaction to 'Survival Instinct' which was really the only episode I did, or an episode I helped Bryan Fuller on, and that's not true. It had nothing to do with any creative issues at all."

    [...]

    In commenting about the rumors revolving around Moore's departure, [Bryan] Fuller scoffed. "We thought about making up all this kind of stuff," he says. "Like with Ron being very uncomfortable with the VOYAGER writing staff and him going through a sex change. Those things are just as close to the truth as what's being printed on the Internet. It's surprising where the rumors go. But you can see a glimmer of truth in some of them, and you can see how they got twisted through four retellings into the wild stuff out there. The dog became a bear. It's kind of silly."

    More can be found in the full article. Perhaps more interesting is an article by Mark A. Altman, who says goodbye to Ron Moore:

    While I'm sure he'll make his mark in the future on many other shows and films, I have no doubt that Ron's sure hand and ample talent will forever be missed on the frontlines of the final frontier. In any event, he has left a legacy of Star Trek stories that cannot be taken away. Live long and prosper, Ron Moore.

    Altman's full article can be found here.

    New Sev Trek Competition
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    John Cook at Sev Trek has put up a new edition of the 'Write Your Own Sev Trek Competition:'

    Sev Trek header
    Write Your Own Sev Trek Competition - cartoon spoofs of Star Trek. Copyright 1999 by John Cook.

    This week's competition ties in with 'Insurrection:'

    Cleanshaven Commander Piker. No, this isn't first season X-Gen but from their latest movie where Commander Piker shows off his clean shaven chin to Beta.

    Submit your punchlines here.

    Overnight Ratings 'Bliss'
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    Unfortunately it appears the Universe hasn't yet posted its Overnight Ratings Report for Wednesday's repeat of 'Bliss,' so I'll guess you'll just have to make do with my commentary. According to Ultimate TV, 'Bliss' got a 3.0 rating / 5.0 share, which is 0.3 points down from last week. With that it was the sixth shows on all networks, right behind "Dawson's Creek" which scored a 3.4 rating.

    Ron Moore Says Goodbye
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    Yesterday, Ronald D. Moore posted what will probably his last-ever message to his AOL folder. In it, he says 'Goodnight and Goodbye' to Star Trek:

    Well, folks it's true. I've left Voyager and Star Trek.

    I know there's a lot of speculation out there as to the how's and why's of my departure, but I'd really rather not get into the details of what happened. (Dirty laundry and all that.) What I will say is that I realized that it was time for me to move on and that I left more out of sorrow than in anger. I have no bitter feelings over what happened and I wish everyone associated with Trek and with Voyager only the best.

    As most of you probably will not have AOL, we took the liberty of re-posting Ron Moore's post at the Trek Nation - you can find that by going here. Thanks go out to Fred Shedian for sending in the post.

    If you haven't already done so, be sure to check out this farewell to Ron Moore by one of his former colleagues at Paramount.

    Shatner Biography On TV
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    Today at 8:00pm Eastern Time, A&E Cable will be repeating a 1-hour biography of William Shatner (James T. Kirk). Take a look what the biography deals with, according to the official William Shatner Connection:

    "This look at the actor famed for portraying Captain Kirk on "Star Trek" includes little known facts about his life, including his battle with a chronic ear problem that nearly drove him to suicide."

    Thanks go out to James P. Kennedy for reporting this.

    Blaze Of Glory Cards Announced
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    Big Customizable Card Game news - the people at Decipher have put up the full card list of the upcoming 'Blaze of Glory' expansion pack at their web site. You can get the list in .pdf, .html, .txt or .doc format by going here.

    Berman At 'South Park' Premiere
    Christian (3:51 pm CST)
    The new edition of Eon Magazine contains a report of the 'South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut' premiere, which was of course attended by many stars. One of the people attending it was of course Brent Spiner (Data), who had a voice role in the movie. More surprising was the appearance of Rick Berman, creator of all modern Trek. You can see a picture of Berman at the premiere by going here.

    Voyager Syndication Promo Info
    Christian (3:51 pm CST)
    Mr. Video Productions has posted some extremely interesting news about the Paramount promotion plans for Voyager's syndication run, in the form of a letter sent to Program Directors. The most interesting news is that the Voyager reruns won't be shown in order, but rather according to certain Theme Weeks:

    Theme Weeks: To help even further bolster your promotional push and make sure your viewers are going to watch VOYAGER "five flights a week," we are doing something that no syndicator has ever done before. Starting with the VOYAGER launch on September 13 through the end of November sweep (December 3), you will have individual theme weeks supported with special on-air generics and theme week episodic graphics - EVERY WEEK! Here's a list of the theme weeks with their air schedule dates and "working" titles:

    A full list of promotion plans can be found here.

    Star Trek Credit Card Discrimation
    Christian (3:51 pm CST)
    A reader just sent in the following report:

    Several years ago, I applied and was approved for, a Star Trek VISA card from MBNA America. Since that initial card, I've gone from the standard card, to a gold, and now a platinum MasterCard. Each one brought nice Trek-related benefits, like merchandise discounts, the Star Trek Communicator magazine at a special price, and discounted tickets to conventions, plus each card has had a cool picture of different Enterprises. Over the years, the account has also brought an ever-increasing interest rate (currently just over 17%). In the last year, because of some major repairs to our two cars and house, we've accumulated a good-sized debt using this same card. Of course, the interest paid per month has skyrocketed! I called MBNA America to see if they had a lower interest rate. I was told yes, but the lower interest rate was NOT available with any Star Trek card! I can't help but feel I've been discriminated against. So, Buyer Beware.

    Thanks go out to the person who sent this in - this certainly sounds very weird.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:50 pm CST)
    -Tomorrow in the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Return to Grace' at 16:00 BST, followed an hour later by Voyager's 'Flashback.' Thanks go out to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective for this.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Persönlichkeiten' (The Forsaken) tomorrow morning at 02:25 CET. At 15:00, they'll be showing Voyager's 'Vor dem Ende der Zukunft, Teil 1' (Future's End, Part One)

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:50 pm CST)
    A few active threads at the Trek BBS:

    -Do you also want reruns of DS9 and Voyager?

    -Why is Paris always rude to Tuvok?

    -What are your thoughts on the recent interview with Kate Mulgrew in Mania Magazine?

    Find more at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:49 pm CST)
    I completely missed this yesterday, but the report about Julia Houston's Battle against CGI article was the 2000th story ever to run on TrekToday!

    Thursday July 8, 1999
    Ron & Brannon Feature
    Christian (4:03 pm CST)
    At the Trek Nation, we just put up what is probably our most in-depth feature since TrekToday's E3 section two months ago. The feature deals with everything related to the recent Ron Moore / Brannon Braga rumours, and includes everything from opinion articles to a special mailbag. The most interesting thing, however, must be a farewell to Ron Moore, written by one of his former colleagues at Paramount:

    Ronald Moore was one of Star Trek's greatest strengths. His work on Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Star Trek: Generations, and Star Trek: First Contact brought drama, characterization, vision, and fun to our imaginary universe. Ron understood that Star Trek is first and foremost about people who are not too different from you and I who somehow find the courage within themselves to meet the challenges of the final frontier.

    But Ron also knew how to have fun with Star Trek, and he enjoyed putting a bit of lightheartedness in his stories. Doing all of this on a television schedule is damned hard work. To do it many times over a period of years takes more from a person than most viewers probably realize. Ron did all this and more.

    I was tempted to quote the whole farewell here, but you'll just have to read the rest here. It really is very moving. Other things you can find in the special feature include a new mailbag, a response from TrekWeb's Steve 'Berserker' Perry to the 'Defending Braga' article, and two rather interesting featured articles. You can find all that and more in the full feature, which is definitely worth checking out.

    Also, let me thank everyone who sent in mailbag responses and article submissions - they really are of excellent quality, and I'm very grateful to those of you who took the time to send in their thoughts.

    [Update, 9:36 CET:] Ron Moore himself just posted a farewell message to his AOL folder, in which he talks about his reasons for leaving and his ten years on Star Trek. We decided to include this open letter in our Ron & Brannon feature - you can find it here.

    Moore Replacement Found
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    TrekWeb has put up an update on the Voyager writing staff situation:

    Trekweb has learned that Ken Biller, former Voyager writer who in the offseason left the show to produce a production deal of his own with Paramount and UPN, will be returning in at least a part time role as co-executive producer, filling in the vacancy left at the post by the departure of Ron Moore. As expected, Robert Doherty remains on as the writer brought in to replace Moore's role in the writing staff.

    The original report can be found here, though it doesn't contain any more info.

    Three 'DS9 - The Fallen' Screenshots
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    GA-Source just posted three all-new screenshots of the upcoming 'Deep Space Nine - The Fallen' game, along with an update on how the game is doing:

    How will Deep Space Nine get past the stigmata with Star Trek based games, where the license comes first and game design comes afterwards? Well on the technology side, the game will be using the Unreal engine, with a third-person POV that will allow players to do things with the characters you can't do from a first-person perspective: climb obects, swing on monkey bars, and slide down things. With all this character interaction, The Collective had to expand Unreal's character animation system with a skeletal-based one. This new system will now allow them to get in a lot more movement. For example, the arms and head can be manipulated independently from any animation, and they now move to track and target enemies while even running. In addition, a new level of detail system will let the development team reduce a character's polygon count as it gets smaller.

    The new screenshots can be found by going here and scrolling down to the bottom of the page. Thanks go out to Federation HQ for the link. One of these days you should also finally get to see our own 'DS9 - The Fallen' interview, btw - our E3 reporter just needs to find the time to type it up.

    Voyager Cancellation Rumours
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    Here we are again for our weekly session of starting worries and inviting flame mails :-). Lord Spock has sent in another report on the rumoured Voyager cancellation:

    Management still feels the ratings are too low for comfort. If the ratings stay as low as they have been with some of the worst-performing episodes, Voyager will most likely end by the end of season six. A major promotional campaign will start at the end of this month. The actors have already been booked on talk shows to promote the show.

    UPN is in major trouble. UPN is losing money and there is nothing more to be done. The network hopes that the new fall schedule will get them out of the hole. It is rumoured that UPN could close down or even be bought out at the end of next season, though this not confirmed at all. If this happens, Voyager could conceivably be brought over to mainstream Paramount.

    Again, this has not been confirmed, this is only one source, and this is only one site, making this officially nothing more than rumours. Let's hope the ratings will improve next year, though - certanly good ratings can never be bad for Star Trek's future.

    'Gravity' Final Ratings
    Christian (3:51 pm CST)
    Michael Iversen at the Star Trek Universe has posted the final ratings for last week's Voyager episode, 'Gravity.' Voyager did better than last week, though that was not very surprising considering last week's horrendous ratings:

    The final rating for last week's Voyager is in, and it did a lot better than last week - Voyager got a 2.1, and was nr. 90 along with UPN's "Moesha". Thats was a lot better than last week's very low rating. Voyager was UPN's highest rated show. (Of course with "Moesha")

    Other UPN ratings can be found in the full report.

    Starfleet Universe Opens
    Christian (3:51 pm CST)
    Actually it did a few days ago already, but I completely forgot to report about it. Take a look at what this new Starfleet Command site promises:

    Starfleet Universe is a new site dedicated to providing the Star Trek community with the very latest news, strategy, files and resources for Interplay Productions' highly anticipated strategy game, "Starfleet Command".

    [...]

    Located at http://www.starfleetuniverse.com/ , Starfleet Universe aims to provide the latest news on Starfleet Command, as well as breaking news in the Star Trek gaming universe! We do plan on adding new features/sections to the site including information pages such as FAQ's & strategy tips, a more comprehensive links section with additional links to clan sites & all Starfleet Command related web sites and free sub hosting to Starfleet Command related web sites!

    Find the site here - it has already managed to put up lots of interesting news stories.

    Join The Battle Against CGI!
    Christian (3:48 pm CST)
    Julia Houston at About.com's Star Trek Fans has written a new article looking at at the ever-more present phenomenon of CGI animations:

    CGI animation is [...] too clean, too calculating, and too easy. Without limitations on the animation, there are no reality checks. Anything you can draw, you can animate, and that means designs of impossible mass or balance don't act like they're too top-heavy or fragile to move correctly, they just look like they are.

    [...]

    Stop the madness! Bring back models! Bring back matt drawings! I don't care that CGI is so much more convenient! I don't care that it's cutting-edge art! It looks dumb! It makes the actors look dumb when they don't turn to each other and say, "Geeze, this alien king dude looks like something from The Little Mermaid."

    Honestly, I'd rather go back to handpuppets. The Horta in "Devil in the Dark" may have looked like a shag rug draped over a long-suffering actor, but at least it looked like a real shag rug, not a picture of one.

    The full article can be found here - go and read it, Julia Houston definitely has a point. Models are a lot more romantic than CGI.

    New Sev Trek Comic
    Christian (3:46 pm CST)

    Sev Trek header
    Sev Trek - cartoon spoofs of Star Trek. Copyright 1999 by John Cook.

    Pocket Speaks
    Christian (3:46 pm CST)
    Pocket Books editors John Ordover and Margaret Clark both updated their Q&A boards with some interesting new info - take a look at one question and answer from each of them:

    Query from: Derek
    will this DS9 COMPANION be worth the money? by which I mean will it give more than boring info, but things like: author reviews, behind the scenes stories, would-be plotting, behind the scenes stories, and behind the scenes stories? and I assume it's for the entire series.

    Response from: Margaret Clark
    So I take it you want some behind the scene stories????? I can say for certain fact, that Terry Erdmann had become so much a fixture on the DS9 sets, that all I had to say was I was looking for Terry, and would get onto the set. The only excuse that has kept me from dragging Terry to New York and chaining him to a computer is, "You will not believe the stuff I am getting. It's great, I've got to go back and change/fix/beef-up…" You get the point. I have read the first four seasons, there is stuff in there I've never seen anywhere else!

    Query from: Eric
    John- Sorry to post again, but I forgot one question. Can you tell us about Michael Jan Friedman's new TNG hardcover for next year? While I'm writing, whose ideas were the cross-overs for next year? For example: DH was yours and Michael Jan Friedman's, and CT was yours and Dean Smith's. Thanks, Eric

    Response from: John Ordover
    It's set on the Stargazer and deals with what happened when Picard first took command. Section 31 is Marco's baby, and he's working with Weddle and Thompson, the guys who created S31 for DS9. The New Earth six-book series is me and Diane Carey.

    More can be found at the Q&A boards of Margaret Clark and John Ordover.

    UPN Spreading 'Academy' Rumours
    Christian (3:45 pm CST)
    I have received several reports of local UPN affiliates reporting about the 'Flight Academy' rumours on their news shows. Almost certainly, these are just individual stations reporting about this due to a lack of 'real' news, but I thought it was interesting to note anyways. Keep in mind that the New York Post published an article yesterday which had Paramount deny that a 'Flight Academy' series has even been under consideration.

    The Sound Of Her Voice Chat
    Christian (3:45 pm CST)
    Today at 9:00pm Eastern Time, a live interview will be held with Debra Wilson, most famous for her starring role on the MADtv series. Last year, however, she also starred as Captain Lisa Cusak in the sixth-season DS9 episode 'The Sound of her Voice.' Info on how to attend the IRC chat can be found here.

    TNG RPG Wins Origins Award
    Christian (3:45 pm CST)
    In his new Out of the Box column at AnotherUniverse's Mania Magazine, Star Trek TNG Role-Playing Game designer Kenneth Hite mentions that his TNG RPG recently won the 'Best Roleplaying Game' award at the Origins '99 convention:

    Three of the others [who attended the ceremonies] were Ross Isaacs, Christian Moore, and Steve Long, my codesigners on the Star Trek: the Next Generation RPG, which won the Origins Award for Best Roleplaying Game. Ross thanked Christian, and on Christian's behalf thanked Christian's parents, his partner Owen Seyler, LUG company honchos Bernie Cahill and Greg Orman, and on his own hook thanked the writers, and his wife. Steve thanked the voters and the writers and Christian, and Ross. I thanked Ross (who, as STTNGRPG Line Developer, shepherded this project doggedly throughout) and Chaosium, for giving me not only experience, but the chance to get to know Ross (and hence, a slot on the Last Unicorn development team) through my Nephilim work.

    Find more in the full column. While you're there, be sure to check out the new design of Mania Magazine itself - I'm not sure I really like it yet, but it probably just has to grow on me.

    New Starfleet Command Screenshots
    Christian (3:44 pm CST)
    UGN 3D has posted a new set of screenshots of Interplay's Starfleet Command real-time strategy game. All the screenshots are of more than excellent quality, and should definitely be checked out if you're interested in the game. You can find them by going here. Thanks go out to Evil Avatar for the link.

    Happy Birthday!
    Christian (3:44 pm CST)
    Today is the 53rd birthday of Jay Chattaway, one of Star Trek's regular composers. He is also the man who created "The Inner Light Suite," which is quite probably the most beautiful piece of music ever created for Star Trek.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:44 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing 'Metamorphosis,' the TOS episode which introduced us to Zefram Cochrane.

    -According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Crossfire' at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST tomorrow.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Macht der Phantasie' (If Wishes Were Horses) tomorrow morning at 01:10 CET. At 15:00 tomorrow, they'll be showing 'Persönlichkeiten' (The Forsaken).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:44 pm CST)
    The Trek BBS is rapidly approaching the 400 registered users, which really is an incredible amount of people. Take a look at some of the current active threads:

    -Should the Captain in the new Star Trek series be... Naomi Wildman?

    -What is the Blair Witch Project?

    -What are some of the biggest nits in Voyager?

    Find lots more at the Trek BBS, where you're more than welcome to participate as well!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:43 pm CST)
    Do read our Ron & Brannon feature, people - some great content can be found there. And please excuse the rather weak title for the feature - unfortunately I didn't seem to be really inspired today.

    Wednesday July 7, 1999
    Star Trek Ratings Are Good!
    Christian (4:16 pm CST)
    At least according to Greg Fuller, webmaster of the Star Trek Nielsen Ratings Information Database. In a new featured article at the Trek Nation, he tells us why people shouldn't be so quick to predict the end of Star Trek:

    Two events are predicted more often than any other in the world today: the end of the world and the end of Star Trek. This year, especially, prognosticators are predicting that both will come to pass with the start of the new millennium. I'm going to put this bluntly: They've never been right before, and they still aren't.

    One of the most often-used pieces of evidence used to support the idea that Trek is on the way down is Trek's current performance in the Nielsen ratings. This will be a slightly different take on Trek's last 12 years on TV -- While Trek's weekly viewership has dropped off, the falling ratings can be attributed to many things other than falling popularity, and going by the ratings, the franchise is still healthy.

    Read more in the full article and, after that, send in your comments to feedback@treknation.com so we can print them in the mailbag! If all goes well there should actually be another edition of the mailbag tomorrow, btw.

    'Armada' Story Info
    Christian (4:11 pm CST)
    YnrohKeeg at StarTrekGames.Net, still only accessible via the IP-address, has a short report up about the storyline of the upcoming 'Armada' real-time strategy game. This report is apparently based on an Armada movie which was shown at the May Electronic Entertainment Expo:

    The movie could not be heard over the din of E3 (damn!) but it did reveal some of the story none the less. The story has something to do with the Borg re-appearing en mass in the alpha quadrant led by none other than Locutus! Well wait you say, they rescued Picard did'nt they? Well in the movie the Enterprise is sent out to get talk to? see about? the Borg (could not tell due to no audio). You see the Enterprise pull up and then there is a computer-rendering of the E's bridge and major characters at their stations. Picard opens up communications with the Borg and up on the view screen pops Locutus; Picards mouth then proceeds to hang WIDE open. DAMN not being able to hear! There were then some shots of various races battling each other and the Borg and thats about it.

    More can be found here.

    New York Post Trek Article
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    Don Kaplan at the New York Post has written a rather interesting "The Long 'Trek' Back" article, which deals with the new Star Trek series. Take a look at the confirmed info they provide:

    The next "Star Trek" series is already on the drawing board and could hit the air by 2002.

    Veteran "Star Trek" writer Brannon Braga and series executive producer Rick Berman are in the early stages of a new series, according to officials at Paramount - the studio that produces the TV show and films.

    After that the article goes on to mention the 'Flight Academy' rumour, which is said to be 'bogus' by an official Paramount spokesperson. Rather interesting is the fact that the article mentions the 2002 date twice, which certainly is a lot further away than many people were thinking. What would Braga and Berman actually do with three years development time, by the way? The other series never took that long! In any case, find the full article here.

    Janeway Action Figure Prototype
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    The Raving Toy Maniac has put up a picture of the "master deco prototype" of the upcoming New Force Exclusive 'Flashback' Janeway figure:

    The prototype, based on the Saavik body and Janeway head, features the corrected rank insignia on the shoulder and wrist, the correct department color on the collar, and the red stripes on the pant legs (a detail omitted from all other figures featuring this era uniform).

    Definitive price and date of availability have still not been determined as of yet, but New Force owner, Rick Whitelock, is aiming for an $8.99 per figure cost and a 4th Quarter, 1999 release date.

    You can find the picture here.

    Jammer's 'Equinox' Review
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    Jamahl Epsicokhan at Star Trek: Hypertext just put up his review of 'Equinox,' the Voyager season-ender. Take a look at how Jamahl begins his review:

    "Equinox" is a good example of Voyager using action and story themes that play best to its identity. Despite the positives in season five, this series still doesn't seem to fly on its own identity, and I'm doubting it ever will. It flies on isolated plots and often the skillful reapplication of ideas from other Trek series. Last week's "Warhead" was a perfect example. There's nothing really wrong with the reapplication of new material (if done with inspiration, which "Warhead" alas wasn't), but there's nothing fresh about it either.

    Now we have "Equinox," which brings back a number of familiar themes previously explored exclusively on Voyager--themes that I personally wish were more prevalent on this series. Themes that remind us we're in the Delta Quadrant, removed from Starfleet and its safe haven (although considering the war in the Alpha Quadrant, "safe haven" probably isn't accurate these days)--and possibly removed from its rules given certain circumstances.

    The full review, in which Jamahl awards the episode 3 out of 4 stars, can be found by clicking this link.

    How To Win A CCG Tournament
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    The people at Decipher, the publisher of the Star Trek Customizable Card Game, just put up the winning deck from last week's Origins event, which also featured a CCG championship. You can see which deck was used by winner David Bowling by going here!

    More On Jeri Ryan Top 50 Appearance
    Christian (3:51 pm CST)
    Yesterday I reported about the new edition of Visual Imaginations' Cult Times magazine, which apparently features a 'Top 50 Feisty Fantasy Females' list. According to the Official Jeri Lynn Ryan Homepage, >Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine) appeared twice on this list, which was rather surprising to me. Jay was kind enough to write in to inform me that one listing was for her role as Juliet Stuart in Dark Skies (at No.29), while her Seven of Nine role landed her the first place. Thanks go out to Jay for sending this in!

    Trek Book News
    Christian (3:51 pm CST)
    At his books Q&A, Pocket Books editor John Ordover once again answered a bunch of fan questions, including the below rather interesting two:

    Query from: Andrew
    John:How well did the deep space nine finale sell in stores?Did it do as good as the DS9 rebels trilogy?

    Response from: John Ordover
    Yes, about the same. It's the finale, after all.

    Query from: Brent
    Are you planning any Voyager books that feature the Doctor or at least have him on the cover? It seems that with most books he is just left as almost a background character without having much influence on the plot (although I see why this may be, considering that most books are point of view, and it would be kind of hard to do the point of view of a hologram). Also, I just wanted to say thanks for answering all of these questions everyday, and I am really looking forward to Christie Golden's Dark Matter VGR trilogy.

    Response from: John Ordover
    The Doctor is a problem, not just because of the POV problem you point out, but because he's essentially invulnerable. So unless we're doing a medical story, he's hard to work with.

    The last answer certainly is strange to say the least. That would seem to suggest that the books are purely built on action and violence, which isn't exactly how I like to think about the Star Trek novels. More can be found at the actual Q&A Board.

    Cirroc Lofton Chat Tonight
    Christian (3:50 pm CST)
    At 8:00pm Eastern Time, TV Guide will be hosting a live chat with Cirroc Lofton and Dan Lauria, stars of the new 'The Hoop Life' show. Before that, Cirroc Lofton of course starred as Jake Sisko on Deep Space Nine, and I'm sure he'll also be willing to answer questions about that. You can participate in the chat by going to chat.yahoo.com.

    Kate Mulgrew Interview At Mania
    Christian (3:50 pm CST)
    Michelle Erica Green at AnotherUniverse's Mania Magazine has once again put up a quality interview with a Star Trek actor. This time, she's managed to get Kate Mulgrew (Kathryn Janeway), who spoke with Green about Voyager's sixth season:

    Mulgrew sat down with executive producer Brannon Braga before shooting started to discuss some of her hopes for Janeway. "My great wishes for this season...I really want a featured episode with Roxann [Dawson, who plays B'Elanna Torres] and one with Bob [Picardo, who plays the Doctor], where they are integral to what's happening not only on the ship, but with me," she revealed. "I have a very close personal relationship with both of them, those two, and I feel that Roxann has suffered a bit in the past year."

    More (including a few actual news items about the sixth season) can be found in the full article. It also contains a few new pictures of Kate Mulgrew and her husband, so it's definitely worth checking out.

    Starfleet Command Preview
    Christian (3:50 pm CST)
    B.J. Zolp at GA-Strategy has written a preview of 'Starfleet Command,' Interplay's upcoming real-time strategy game:

    Space .... the final frontier .... the final battlefield .... the setting for a new Star Trek PC game, Starfleet Command. Starfleet Command puts the player in the captain's chair of a starship, or even an entire fleet (more on this later), from one of six different races. The goal is to utilize the full capabilities of the starship to engage and destroy your enemy and complete the objectives. Recently I was privileged to obtain a copy of the E3 preview of Starfleet Command.

    Starfleet Command, set in the time period of Star Trek: The Original Series, is a real time strategy simulation that is loosely based on the Starfleet Battles board game. Even if you have never played Starfleet Battles or are unfamiliar with the Star Trek universe altogether, you will find Starfleet Command to be an extremely robust and precise space combat simulation.

    Find more in the full preview. Thanks go out, as usual, to Evil Avatar for the link.

    Nimoy Voices 'Computer Graphics'
    Christian (3:50 pm CST)
    The Boycott against Yahoo! has ended, so now I can link to their stories again. According to a 'Showbiz People Briefs' article at Yahoo!, Leonard Nimoy (Spock) will soon be voicing a new documentary called 'The Story of Computer Graphics.' This two=hour documentary looks at the 45-year evolution of digital technology, and is of course itself also shot on digital high-definition video:

    [The documentary] will premiere at the 26th ACM Siggraph '99 (Intl. Conference on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques), which runs Aug. 8-13 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

    Audiences will get a behind-the-scenes look at the making of past tech-laden hits ``Jurassic Park,'' ``Terminator 2: Judgment Day'' and ``Toy Story.'' The film's premiere, 8:30 p.m. Aug. 8 at the Shrine Auditorium, will be free to the public after the confab's attendees are admitted.

    Find the full article here.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:49 pm CST)
    -At 9:00pm, UPN will be repeating Voyager's 'Bliss.' Take a look at the official Paramount description:

    'Bliss' - courtesy Paramount Pictures Finally, after five long years, an exhilarated crew of the U.S.S. Voyager finds a wormhole that will bring them back to the Alpha Quadrant. As the happy crew prepares to return to Earth, a skeptical Seven of Nine violates captain's orders and enlists The Doctor, little Naomi Wildman and an alien pilot, Qatai, to help her stop the ship from entering the wormhole.

    Thanks go out to the Continuum for the description and the image, which is of course copyrighted by Paramount Pictures.

    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the TOS episode 'I, Mudd.'

    -Tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Paradise Lost,' according to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective. At 18:00 tomorrow, BBC Two will be showing DS9's 'The Homecoming,' followed 45 minutes later by 'The Circle,' which is extremely great, as I've seen both episodes only once.

    -Tomorrow morning at 01:35 CET, Sat.1 in Germany will be repeating DS9's 'Mulliboks Mond' (Progress). At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Macht der Phantasie' (If Wishes Were Horses).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:46 pm CST)
    A selection of today's active Trek BBS topics:

    -If you could say one sentence to anyone working on Star Trek, what would you say?

    -What are your favorite Voyager characters?

    -Should Star Trek X deal with the mirror universe?

    Find more threads at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:45 pm CST)
    It was only with great difficulty that I was able to drag myself away from "The Guns of Navarone" to do this update - they simply don't make films like that anymore. I'm taping the second half of the movie (which is shown on Dutch television at the moment), and perhaps if I'm not too tired I might actually see the conclusion later on tonight - I just *love* classic war movies.

    Tuesday July 6, 1999
    The Franchise's Future Continues
    Christian (3:25 pm CST)
    After last week's excellent first installment in our series of "The Franchise's Future" articles, we're now very proud to be able to present you with the second article! This time, the author of the article is Jim Wright, famous for his Delta Blues Voyager reviews and his columns in the Starfleet Journal. Jim Wright is a bit more positive than Jeff Koga was last week, though he does believe that it might be a good thing for the franchise if Voyager's sixth season would be the last:

    I'm not a day trader. I invest for the long term. If Voyager is canceled, the biggest impact for me is I get my weekends back. Would I miss it? Yes. I think it's better than many people give it credit for, though it is certainly far from perfect and the Ron Moore rumors are disconcerting. But I don't place in Voyager's hands the fate of the Franchise, and I won't lose sleep if it goes away early.

    Trek will survive. It may lie dormant for a time; it could use the rest. After a time, it will peek out from its lair and not see its shadow, and the winter of our discontent will give way to the spring of a new generation of excited, eager Trek fans. Those who have seen the Franchise at its best and worst, have assimilated and debated each hour to the nth degree, and who are eager to press forward with a confidence that the best of Trek is yet to come.

    The full article can be found here. As last week, please send in all your comments about the article to feedback@treknation.com so we can publish it in the mailbag! If things go the way they're currently going, the mailbag might actually be published twice weekly, btw - we were quite literally flooded with mail over yesterday's 'Defending Braga' article. I'm not complaining, of course :-).

    Next week's installment will be written by Heather Jarman, who is also a columnist at the Starfleet Journal, and a good friend of Jim Wright.

    Alexander Siddig Movie News
    Christian (3:24 pm CST)
    Sid City, the official fan site of Alexander Siddig (Dr. Julian Bashir) has some extra news on 'Vertical Limit,' the new movie starring Siddig:

    Sid co-stars with Chris O'Donnell in next summer's Vertical Limit. We first broke the news about Sid's next project in June, and now we begin our coverage of filming. Look for more information as it becomes available!

    Sid left for New Zealand on June 30 to begin a month of training. Filming begins August 2. Sid's role is that of the leader of the rescue team heading up K2, the world's second highest mountain. Sid's character is Pakistani.

    According to the site, other cast members include Robin Tunney, Bill Paxton, Nicholas Lea, and Scott Glenn. A lot more can be found on the special Sid City Vertical Limit page, which will undoubtedly be updated regularly over the coming months.

    More On The BotF Patch
    Christian (3:19 pm CST)
    Federation HQ, a rather superb Trek gaming news site, has posted some extra information on the 'Birth of the Federation' patch. The owners of the site apparently take part in the beta test program for the new patch, which is how they were able to get this info. Take a look at the enhancements the patch will provide:

  • You can now install the music files to your hard drive in order to reduce CD-ROM access. This requires an additional 76MB of hard drive space.
  • If you do a complete install of the game (by copying the music files to your hard drive), then you can "spawn" the game for multiplayer games over a LAN.
  • The scroll speed on the Main Galactic map has been increased.
  • You can now turn off the Borg but keep the rest of the random events.
  • The Solar System Inventory window is now alphabetized.
  • Turn processing time has been improved.

  • There will also be several bug fixes, which are listed on the Federation HQ news page. Microprose should really be thanked for these enhancements, btw - certainly the 'spawning' option will be extremely helpful for me.

    Star Trek Monthly DeBoer Interview
    Christian (3:19 pm CST)
    Daring deBoer, the unofficial fan site of Nicole deBoer (Ezri Dax), has put an interview which first appeared in the July 1999 edition of the British Star Trek Monthly Magazine. In the interview, which was written by Ian Spelling, deBoer talks about the fact that she was used rather a lot over the past year:

    Star Trek Monthly Magazine July 1999 - copyright Titan Publishing "They'd say, 'Yeah, it's all about you.' I'd say, 'Oh, no,' and they'd say, 'What? You're not happy about it?' I'd say, 'It's just too much. People are going to hate me.' I was really concerned about it, but then that part of the season passed and they started doing stuff with the other characters. I just really wanted them to incorporate Ezri into storylines that people want to see going on as the show's finishing up, as opposed to totally separate storylines just about Ezri. I thought it was important to do a few of them, but doing so many made me nervous. But they then started really focusing on the other characters as well and, as we got towards the end, they mostly gave me bits and pieces with Worf [Michael Dorn] and Julian [Alexander Siddig], so I was happy about that."

    The full text of the interview can be found here, while scanned pictures from the magazine can be found here.

    Jeri Ryan In Visimags
    Christian (3:18 pm CST)
    The official Jeri Lynn Ryan Homepage is reporting that the new edition of the British Cult Times magazine features a list of "Fifty Feisty Fantasy Females," and Jeri Ryan (Seven Of Nine) is apparently featured *twice* on that list (No, I don't know how that's possible either). A picture of Jeri Ryan from that article is actually available via the JLR Homepage's news site. In related news, the new edition of Starburst Magazine (also published by Visual Imaginations Publications) features an exclusive artcard showing Jeri Ryan, which they're giving away to celebrate reaching 250 issues.

    Ron D. Moore Replacement
    Christian (3:18 pm CST)
    Steve Krutzler at TrekWeb has published a follow-up to his Ron Moore story, mentioning a possible replacement for Moore on the Voyager staff:

    TrekWeb has learned that Robert J. Doherty, who has contributed to Star Trek: Voyager with teleplays such as season four's "Vis a Vis" as well as last season's "Infinite Regress" and "Bliss," has been brought on-board the show as a staff writer. Robert - who served as Ken Biller's assistant up until Ken left the show at the end of last season - will most likely join the staff as a story editor, helping to fill the void left by the sudden departure of Ronald D. Moore last week. It still remains to be seen if this is or will be the only staff addition. Someone may yet be brought in as a co-executive producer, the position Ron vacated: stay tuned.

    The full report also contains a few statements from Steve Krutzler about the history of the Ron Moore affaire, presumably in reaction to Valentine Winter's article defending Brannon Braga.

    Mania Create A New Crew
    Christian (3:18 pm CST)
    Steve Johnson at AnotherUniverse's Mania Magazine has written a new article looking at the perfect crew for future Star Trek movies:

    With Deep Space Nine ending and half the cast reportedly unwilling to participate in future Star Trek movies, how are they going to do Star Trek X?

    Patrick Stewart, although not firmly out of the running, is pretty darned expensive, and Brent Spiner has said he would rather not force Data to age along with Spiner himself. And the situation is worse over on DS9: Avery Brooks and Nana Visitor, the two stars of the series, aren't interested in the big screen. Which still leaves quite a lot of possibilities, albeit not the obvious ones.

    So what the heck? If they want to make a Star Trek X movie (which is like asking if they want to continue to eat food and live indoors), who SHOULD they use?

    In the end Johnson comes up with a rather surprising crew (Captain Riker? Dr. Pulaski?), but it's still a fun article. Find it all here.

    New German Tom Paris Confirmed
    Christian (3:17 pm CST)
    According to the German Active Trekkies, the new German voice-over actor for Tom Paris in 'Star Trek: Voyager' is a certain Erich Räuker. His previous work apparently includes a one-time guest voice appearance on DS9. The previous voice actor, Thomas Vogt, apparently didn't want to do the job anymore after he came back from a holiday in South-America. (And I do hope I translated that well - neither German nor English is my native language)

    Wedding Report In People Magazine
    Christian (3:17 pm CST)
    According to AnotherUniverse's Daily Buzz, the July 5 issue of People Magazine contains an article about the wedding of Kate Mulgrew (Janeway) and politician Tim Hagan. The article is apparently part of a 'Celebrity Wedding' feature, and is written in a "He Said, She Said" format:

    "I have no interest in Hollywood. I knew she was an actress but had never seen her in anything," said Hagan of their first meeting. "I'm an agnostic on many of my days, but when I laid eyes on her I said, 'There is a God.'"

    Mulgrew reported that they had champagne immediately after the 15-minute ceremony, then threw on some shorts and went out for more champagne.

    According to the original report, the People article is accompanied by a nuptial photo of Mulgrew and Hagan, which should certainly make it worth buying.

    Star Trek Items At CityAuction
    Christian (3:17 pm CST)
    According to a press release at PR Newswire, the Sci-Fi Channel and CityAuction will soon be teaming up to produce a 'co-branded auction site [...] which will feature sci-fi merchandise and memorabilia:'

    As part of the co-branding agreement, SCI FI Channel's SCIFI.COM site will feature links to a co-branded version of CityAuction, where buyers can bid on auction merchandise associated with their sci-fi favorites, such as Star Wars, X-Files, Twilight Zone and Star Trek. Sellers of sci-fi collectibles will also be able to capitalize CityAuction's growing market of sci-fi fans. CityAuction, in turn, will feature links from its sci-fi category to SCIFI.COM, so fans can find relevant information on sci-fi news, feature stories, merchandise games and special events.

    The full press release can be found here. (Note that I'm not, as I usually do, linking to the Yahoo! version of the story - Yahoo is still under a boycott.)

    Happy Birthday
    Christian (3:16 pm CST)
    I just noticed in the new edition of the daily German Active Trekkies newsletter that today is the birthday of Rick Sternbach, Senior Illustrator for all modern Trek series.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:16 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the second-season TOS episode 'Catspaw.'

    -According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Homefront' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. At 18:00 tomorrow, the BBC will be showing TNG's 'Chain of Command, Parts One and Two.'

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be rerunning DS9's 'Die Legende von Dal'Rok' (Storytellers) tomorrow morning at 01:45 CET. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Mulliboks Mond' (Progress).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:16 pm CST)
    A look at some of the active discussions at the Trek BBS:

    -One of those threads that simply won't die: Who would win in a fight between the Death Star and a Borg Cube?

    -If you had the chance, would you want to be beamed up to a Starfleet vessel and leave your real life behind?

    -Did you already download the Starfleet Command demo?

    Lots more threads can be found at the Trek BBS, where you're more than welcome to participate in the discussions!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:15 pm CST)
    Has everyone noticed that since about two weeks there's a lovely 'poll' feature at the right hand of the screen? Every two days or so I refresh the poll to deal with a different Star Trek subject to vote on, and you might like to participate as well. The current poll deals with the question if Brannon Braga should leave Voyager or not, which certainly seems to be a hot topic these days. If you missed the poll, please scroll up and vote - the current results are interesting to say the least :-).

    Monday July 5, 1999
    Defending Brannon Braga
    Christian (4:07 pm CST)
    At the Trek Nation, we just put a featured article defending Voyager Executive Producer Brannon Braga. Over the past two weeks, Braga has been the target of some rather serious attacks, and new Trek Nation contributor Valentine Winter decided to write in an defend Braga. In his article, he looks at the various rumours that appeared over the past two weeks, and uncovers some rather interesting things which would seem to make all the reports a little bit less reliable:

    Unfortunately, the attacks on Braga's performance as Executive Producer seem to originate solely from internet fandom, which has always had a rather strained relationship with him. It seems to me that many people who still held a grudge against Braga now saw the perfect opportunity to damage him in public.

    It really was no great surprise to me to find several Usenet postings by this aforementioned 'recook77' fellow, in which he mentions that Braga 'really doesn't seem to give a sh*t [about Voyager]', suggests that the only reason Braga came as far as he did would be if he had kinky snapshots of Paramount executives, and in which he calls Braga sexist. How much trust can we then place in him when he claims to have 'an e-mail from an acquaintance' who supposedly knows everything about "secret meetings" organized by Braga?

    Lots more can be found in the full article, which I really recommend you check out! Major thanks go out to Valentine Winter for writing up this article - if all goes as planned, you should be seeing his name at the Trek Nation a lot in the future. As usual, if you have anything to say about the article, please send it to feedback@treknation.com so we can print in the mailbag!

    [Update - 10:50 CET:]In light of the major upheaval that this article seems to have caused, please do remember that just because we publish an article, it doesn't necessarily mean we also agree with the article. If anyone wants to write a 'Why Braga Should Go' article, we'd be more than happy to publish it as well, if you send it in.

    'Insurrection' Paramount Bestseller
    Christian (3:57 pm CST)
    The LA Times has published the Top 10 companies selling DVDs, for the week which ended the 20th of June. Paramount can be found at no.6:

    Company: Paramount Home Video
    Market share: 7.6%
    Current bestseller: Star Trek: Insurrection

    The full top 10 can be found here - thanks go out to Captain.net for the link.

    Roxann Dawson On Star Trek
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    In an interview in the current issue of DreamWatch Magazine, Roxann Dawson talks about the current state of the Star Trek franchise:

    I think it is still striking chords with people, but I think it does need to find a new generation. [...] Maybe what will happen will be what happened before : it disappears for a while, and then resurfaces. I don't know. I do think that everything works in cycles, and the way that people rediscovered Star Trek. They may have to rediscover it again.

    Sigh. Are there actually any people left who still think the franchise has a life left in it? The full interview, as written by Paul Simpson, can be found by actually buying DreamWatch. Thanks go out to Gustavo Leao for this!

    News From The Lot
    Christian (3:50 pm CST)
    I just received a report from someone who often visits the Paramount lot, who gave me some extra info on 'Fifteen Minutes,' the upcoming movie starring Avery Brooks (Benjamin Sisko):

    It is film about an arsonist. Brooks appears to be playing an investigator/policeman of some sort.

    The main star of the movie is Robert DeNiro, as we already reported a while ago. I also received the following info:

    There are Klingons walking around the lot! Kind of freaked me out!

    Major thanks go out to the person who sent this in! (And yes, he wishes to remain anonymous, if you hadn't guessed ;-)

    BotF Review
    Christian (3:49 pm CST)
    Derek Meyer at GamesFirst! has written a review of 'Birth of the Federation,' the new turn-based strategy game, awarding it four stars:

    Star Trek – Birth of the Federation provides a fresh update to a classic strategy game. Not only will the game appeal to Star Trek fans, but also to hardcore strategy gamers who enjoy space based games and empire building. Finally, there is a Star Trek game that is worthy of the name.

    The full review can be found here. Thanks go out to TGA for the link.

    Robert O'Reilly Interview
    Christian (3:49 pm CST)
    The Great Link just re-printed an interview with Robert O'Reilly (Gowron) which first appeared in the British TV Zone magazine. In the interview, Gowron talks about his final DS9 appearance:

    "We'd finished the fight and Mike said, 'Cut!' There I am lying on the floor on my back and it's hard for us Klingons to get up because our costumes are so heavy. "Michael Dorn was listening to some conversation across the room and I'm saying, 'Michael! Michael! Help me!' He starts looking around everywhere except where my voice is coming from. There I am, like a turtle squirming on its back, yelling, 'Hey, Michael! Help me up!' Once he got me up I said, 'Boy, see how quick you forget the ex-emperor.' He and I got a big kick out of that."

    "We had a good time filming that day even though it was a very long shoot. I think I got there at seven in the morning and didn't leave until two the next morning, but I en- enjoyed myself. What made the day even more special is that it was the first time my wife came to the set. She has a very busy life and with the children [the couple have two-year- old triplets] it's almost impossible to make plans, but we got her there that day. She was an actress years ago so she's used to the whole filming process, but I was just delighted for her to finally be on the set before the show wrapped."

    The full interview can be found here.

    Hear The Sound Of Her Voice
    Christian (3:48 pm CST)
    Kevin Day just posted to rec.arts.startrek.current about a live chat with Debra Wilson, which will be taking place on Thursday at 6:00pm Pacific Time. Wilson is apparently most famous for her role on MadTV, though she also appeared as Captain Lisa Cusak on DS9's 'The Sound Of Her Voice.' More on the chat can be found here.

    'Birth of the Federation' Beta Patch
    Christian (3:48 pm CST)
    The Trek Gaming Alliance is reporting the following:

    Just wanted to let everyone know, the beta patch has been released for the testers by Microprose - no enhancements at this point, just bugs patched. Should know how this baby shakes out in the next few days.

    Hopefully the public patch will then also be coming out in a few days - I'm getting rather tired of the slowdown problems with the game.

    Interplay Releases SFC Soundtrack
    Christian (3:47 pm CST)
    The good people at Interplay have released 11 tracks from the musical score of 'Starfleet Command,' their new strategy game. The game music has been conducted and composed by Ron Jones, the Emmy-award winning composer who also scored 'Best of Both Worlds,' Interplay's 'Starfleet Academy' game, and presumably also 'Klingon Academy.' You can find the music by going here. The demo of the actual game, which was released last week, can still be found here. Thanks go out to TrekWeb for the soundtrack link.

    Star Trek Movies On Sat.1
    Christian (3:47 pm CST)
    According to the German Star Trek Index the German Sat.1 will be showing the first eight Star Trek movies during the summer. 'Star Trek: The Motion Picture' (or 'Der Film,' as it is called in Germany), will be shown on the 24th of July.

    Scarlett Pomers Dot Com
    Christian (3:47 pm CST)
    The official Scarlett Pomers homepage, the official fan site for the young actress best known for her role as Naomi Wildman, has moved to its own domain at ScarlettPomers.com. At its news page, the site now also has new info on 'Survival Instinct' (which will feature Naomi) and an upcoming convention appearance by Pomers.

    New 'Voyager: Elite Force' Screenshot
    Christian (3:46 pm CST)
    'Voyager: Elite Force' - copyright Activision, Courtesy GA-Source GA-Source has put up three screenshots of Raven Software's upcoming 'Voyager: Elite Force' game. The screenshots are part of a sort of mini-preview of the game, which sums up all the features and talks a bit about the Quake III engine, which 'Elite Force' will be using. Unfortunately only one screenshot is new (the one you also see here), but a full-sized version can be found by visiting this page.

    New Summer Sweepstakes Prize
    Christian (3:46 pm CST)
    I just noticed the Grand Prize for the Continuum's Super Sweepstakes has changed - last month, you could win a trip to the Star Trek Experience. This month, the Grand Prize winner will fly to Los Angeles and receive accommodations for two nights at the Universal City Hilton, dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe, Universal Studios Tour, VIP Tour of Paramount Studios and a visit to a set of Star Trek: Voyager. You can enter here, at least if you happen to be living in the US.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:46 pm CST)
    -According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Our Man Bashir' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Die Prophezeiung' (Battle LInes) tomorrow morning at 00:05 CET. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Die Legende von Dal'Rok' (Storyteller).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:46 pm CST)
    The weekend is over, so the Trek BBS is getting more active again. Check out some of the current threads:

    -Do you think the death of James T. Kirk was handled well?

    -Now that Ron Moore has left Voyager, would that also mean the end of DS9's characters?

    -What are your favourite TOS episodes? Includes pictures!

    More posts can be found at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:45 pm CST)
    Unfortunately the great weather we had here in the Netherlands didn't last. Yesterday evening we had lots of rain and lightning, and unfortunately this caused something here in the house to short-circuit. Unfortunately I haven't yet found out what precisely was the cause, meaning that half of the house is still without electricity :-(. I'm actually typing this purely in the light of my monitor, as the room light is on the power circuit that refuses to work. It's getting fixed tomorrow morning, which is just as well, as I doubt my eyes will be able to take this much longer ;-).

    Sunday July 4, 1999
    First Mailbag
    Christian (4:18 pm CST)
    On a day where there is an exceptionally low amount of news, I'm extremely happy to present you with the first edition of the Trek Nation mailbag! The mailbag is the place where you (you!) can write in to let the world know about anything at all Star Trek or TrekToday-related! In the first edition, we have a mail about the 'Flight Academy' rumours, a few miscellaneous bits about the ads on TrekToday, lots of reactions to Jeff Koga's "The Franchise's Future" editorial. We also received lots of mail about the Voyager cancellation rumours, including this very interesting mail from Richard Rafter:

    What Lord Spock is saying comes as no real surprise. My cousin has worked on several projects at the studio. He hold in a phone conversation that the suits had not signed off on anything past Christmas and informed the writers to close loose threads. Since the creative team is nowhere near ready to present a new series I'm looking at this as a strictly economic decision. Due largely of course to UPN's failing market share.

    Note that Lord Spock mentioned yesterday that at least the sixth season is safe now, but it is still interesting to hear about this from someone else. Also remember that none of this has been confirmed yet - please just treat this as any other online rumour. Lots more about all of this can be found in the full mailbag! Remember that if you want to say anything at all about recent Star Trek happenings, please send it in to feedback@treknation.com so we can print it in the mailbag!

    Also, I received lots of mail over the past day about my comments that "it might actually be a good thing for the franchise if [Voyager is cancelled, because] I'm not sure if Voyager can still be saved ratings-wise." Let me just explain that I most certainly do not hate Voyager - I actually rather like the series, though I don't think it's as good as Deep Space Nine. My comments only dealt with the ratings, which, as no one will be able to deny, simply *are* bad - and unfortunately I'm not sure anymore if Voyager's ratings will be able to improve. In that sense, perhaps a new series would be able to achieve higher ratings, though it would of course also be an enourmous loss for all us Voyager fans.

    Roxann Dawson Convention Report
    Christian (4:18 pm CST)
    B3 Prime, the official fan club of Roxann Dawson (B'Elanna Torres), has put up a report of the SciFi Expo convention in Plano, Texas. The convention took place on the 27th and 28th of March, and was also attended by Dawson. The report contains a bit about the Q&A with Dawson:

    Among the questions she was asked were what were her thoughts on the phenomenon known as Paris/Torres fan fic (she demurred from answering); if her wig had changed (no, the color hasn't changed, but the length and style are changing, and a new look will be unveiled by the end of the current season); how long filming an episode takes (she highlighted certain problems with receiving completed scripts); and if she wanted to go back to theatre (Roxann discussed the thrill of being the first and the last person to portray A Chorus Line's Diana Morales).

    More can be found in the full report, written by Angela C. Boeckman and Greg Walker.

    New Force Janeway Figure Report
    Christian (4:18 pm CST)
    Rick at New Force Comics just sent in the following progress report about their 12" Captain Janeway exclusive action figure:

    I have received Packaging approval from Viacom/Paramount and I have received approval on the prototype figure. So production is close... and availability soon thereafter (Sep/Oct).

    Pictures of the package can now be found at the New Force Comics site. Major thanks go out to Rick for sending this in!

    New Cirroc Lofton Series Info
    Christian (4:16 pm CST)
    The TV Guide site has a short feature about 'The Hoop Life,' the new show on Showtime starring Cirroc Lofton (Jake Sisko). TV Guide describes it as an ensemble drama in the world of pro basketball:

    As the series opens, the New England Knights are in the last game of the championship with their rivals, the L.A. Legends. When the Knights lose, it leads to a brawl that puts the public image of star vet Marvin Buxton (Mykelti Williamson) on the line. Hoop Life Poster

    Meanwhile, the womanizing antics of player Greg Marr (Rick Peters) ruin his efforts to reconcile with his wife; and pro hopeful Curtis Thorp (Cirroc Lofton), a high-school superstar, sets his heart on signing with the Knights.[

    According to the article, Lofton will actually be attending a live chat at the TV Guide site on Wednesday, at 8:00pm Eastern Time. Related to this, Jeff 'Koganuts' Koga scanned in the official "The Hoop Life" ad, as it appeared on page 2 of the July 1st issue of the Hollywood Reporter. You can find a full-sized version here. Thanks to Jeff for sending this in!

    TV Zone DS9 Special
    Christian (4:15 pm CST)
    TV Zone DS9 special - copyright Visual Imaginations Publications The new edition of the British TV Zone magazine has just brought out a 'Deep Space Nine - The Farewell' special. The special contains an episode guide for the seventh season, the favourite episodes of the cast, interviews with cast members and producers, and more. One of the interviews is with Armin Shimerman (Quark), and the TV Zone people were kind enough to put up a preview online. Take a look at a part of that interview:

    [Michael Piller was keen] to develop what I would call three-dimensional characters," continues Shimerman. "Their three-dimensionality was highlighted by the fact that the characters were good and bad. They were problematical in the sense that there were things about them that weren't especially nice. Kira [Nana Visitor], for instance, besides being a terrific officer, was also a Bajoran nationalist – if it wasn't good for Bajor, then it wasn't good, period. It took a long time for her to see things from a Federation perspective and not strictly a Bajoran one. When Sisko [Avery Brooks] was first assigned to DS9 he wasn't exactly thrilled and it took a while for him to appreciate his situation. To top if off, he also became Bajor's spiritual leader, the Emissary. Our characters had deeper and darker qualities that you never really saw in the crews of the original Star Trek, TNG and now, Star Trek: Voyager."

    More can be found here.

    New German Tom Paris
    Christian (4:15 pm CST)
    The German Daily Trekkies Newsletter is reporting that the German voice actor for Tom Paris, Thomas Vogt, has been replaced for the fifth season by another actor. The Daily Trekkies newsletter wasn't able to report which actor has taken over the role, though it probably is the same actor who voiced Tuvix several years ago.

    Today On TV
    Christian (4:15 pm CST)
    -According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'The Sword of Kahless' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. At 20:00, they'll be showing the new Voyager episode 'Latent Image.'

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be showing DS9's 'Die Prophezeiung' (Battle Lines) tomorrow at 15:00 CET.

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (4:15 pm CST)
    As is usual during the weekends, it's a bit of a quiet day today at the Trek BBS, though there are still a few interesting threads:

    -How did you become a Trek fan?

    -Why is it that most Starfleet captains seem obsessed about something?

    -In our 'Miscellaneous' forum, we wonder what music you listen to when you're not watching Trek.

    Lots more can of course be found at the Trek BBS, where you're more than welcome to join the discussions!

    Hello World!
    Christian (4:14 pm CST)
    A bit of explanation about the two buttons on the right hand of the screen (below the 'Network' menu) might be a good idea:

    Download WebDog-Since about a week, this site is tracked by WebDog. WebDog is an extremely great application, which "will tell you the moment nearly 200 games news pages and 300 developer .plans are updated and then let you go to that page with a simple double click. Split into easy to use categories with a favorites folder for your most visited sites, Webdog couldn't be easier. With thousands of already satisfied users and a growing database of both news pages and .plans - you can be sure that Webdog will keep you up to date." WebDog was already providing TrekToday with links to the .plans (personal information files) of the developers of the 'Voyager: Elite Force' game at the top of the site, but I find it really great that TrekToday itself is now also tracked. I'm very proud to say that TrekToday is the first site in WebDog's Star Trek category, and, as far as I can tell, also the first non-games site. Please do check out the (free) product - it's really great!

    Boycott Yahoo! -The second link is (hopefully) just temporary, but that doesn't mean it's less important. As you may have heard, GeoCities (now owned by Yahoo!, recently changed its terms of service, which now say that "by submitting Content to any Yahoo property, you automatically grant, or warrant that the owner of such Content has expressly granted, Yahoo the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable, non-exclusive and fully sublicensable right and license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such Content (in whole or part) worldwide and/or to incorporate it in other works in any form, media, or technology now known or later developed." In effect, you're allowing Yahoo! and GeoCities to do whatever they want with everything you upload to your GeoCities site, which, of course, is higly immoral. Please visit the Boycott Yahoo! Page for more info.

    As always, if you have something to say about anything related to Hello World! or the rest of TrekToday, please send it in to feedback@treknation.com so we can use it in our MailBag!

    Saturday July 3, 1999
    New Radio Trek Show
    Christian (4:04 pm CST)
    I just noticed at the German Star Trek Index that a new edition of 'Trek Minds,' the German online radio show is available. This week, the show includes a new feature on Star Trek sites, book reviews, the question of the week, and more. Find it all at the Trek Minds page, though you'll have to understand German to enjoy it.

    New Sev Trek Competition
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    John Cook at Sev Trek has posted a new edition of the 'Write Your Own Sev Trek Competition.'

    Sev Trek header
    Write Your Own Sev Trek Competition - cartoon spoofs of Star Trek. Copyright 1999 by John Cook.

    The Sev Trek mission.
    This is one of those comic strips I'm surprised I haven't used before. Not only is it a convenient way for Sevilians to sum up the Sev Trek mission, it was really quick and easy to draw! (always a high priority when choosing ideas :-)

    Submit your punchlines here.

    Official Voyager Repeat Schedule
    Christian (3:57 pm CST)
    David Henderson at Psi Phi has put up the official Voyager re-run schedule until the 4th of August, which supersedes any other conjecture schedules previously available. Currently the schedule is current until the repeat airing of 'Drone,' and can be found here.

    Ain't It Cool Post Mo(o)re
    Christian (3:57 pm CST)
    Yesterday, Glen at Ain't It Cool News first posted a confirmation of the Ron Moore story, saying that it came 'perilously close to the kind of story [he] usually want nothing to do with.' Today he doesn't seem to have any such reservations left, as he's posted a huge report looking at precisely what happened that caused Ron Moore to leave.

    The story goes into precise detail about what Rick Berman and Brannon Braga allegedly did to to Ron Moore, and appears mostly based on a report which was posted to Usenet. It also contains a few deeply personal attacks at Berman and Braga, which in my opinion should never ever have been posted. You can find the full report here, though it's certainly not pretty, and will make you loose a lot of your faith in Star Trek. Please do remember that Ron Moore's reasons have still not been officially stated, and that this looks more like a few cheap attacks which are just damaging to everyone involved.

    Trek Toys
    Christian (3:56 pm CST)
    Eon's Jeff Bond just put up an editorial looking at the increasing commercialization of toys, and then especially of the Star Wars figures. According to him, however, Trek toys are still fun to buy, because the franchise isn't 'cool' anymore:

    There's one saving grace in all this, and I hate to say it, but it's the cult that started all this in the first place. It's STAR TREK -- because STAR TREK is dying on the vine. It's no longer cool. There's only one STAR TREK TV show on the air and nobody likes it. And the original series, the one I loved from childhood on, is the uncoolest STAR TREK of all. It's forgotten and gathering dust, its banner barely held up by one disrespected toy company, Playmates.

    Playmates understocks and barely seems to be able to get its product distributed around the country. You actually have to DIG and be sneaky to find Playmates product. You have to fight with people and bribe managers at Target and Kay-Bee toys to obtain these toys. There are still people doing this same thing religiously to get their Darth Mauls and their Jar Jars, but the difference is, all those people have to do is wait a few more weeks before that crap will be clogging remainder shelves everywhere. If I miss out on buying a 9" Trelaine from "The Squire of Gothos" at Kay-Bee this month, I'll wind up having to spend $100 for it at some convention.

    Find more here.

    On Cancellation
    Christian (3:55 pm CST)
    Lord Spock just sent in an update to the Voyager cancellation story, which he first reported on a few days ago. As then, huge disclaimers still apply - this is only one source, and it most certainly has not been confirmed yet. Still, take a look at this:

    Paramount has given the okay to a full 26 episode season for season six. However, rumours indicate that Paramount has told Voyager writers to tie up loose ends and get ready to quickly write a series finale for the end of season six.

    As I said before, if Voyager does indeed get cancelled it might actually be a good thing for the franchise. I'm not sure if Voyager can still be saved ratings-wise, and perhaps it would be better if the show would just get replaced by a great new (Star Trek) series. Of course, if you have a different opinion, please send it in to feedback@treknation.com, so we can use it in tomorrow's first edition of the letters section!

    Spock's Wedding Vow
    Christian (3:55 pm CST)
    The people at the Daily Sci-Fi just announced the winners of their "Spock's Wedding Vow" contest, where people could submit creative and humorous wedding vows that could have been said at Saavik's and Spock's wedding. The winner would be receiving a signed copy of "Vulcan's Heart,' the new novel chronicling that wedding. Take a look at the winning vow:

    "Mr. Spock, do you promise to make Saavik your cold and ineffectual wife, to have every seven years or so, to not hold unless trudging dramatically through the snow, in pon farr and in health, until one of you gets Bendii syndrome and croaks?

    Hey, don't hit!"

    More can be found here.

    Trek Actors At Anti-Matter Factory
    Christian (3:54 pm CST)
    An article by Arnout Jaspers in the Dutch newspaper Algemeen Dagblad (the 'General Daily') talks about an anti-matter 'factory' which will soon be opening near Geneva, Switzerland. The article quotes researcher Rolf Landau, who mentions that he'll be inviting Star Trek actors to the opening of the factory.

    This experiment is still very far from what happens in Star Trek, but it's a good way to draw in the public's attention. Once you have that, you can explain them what it's really all about.

    Captain Proton News
    Christian (3:54 pm CST)
    Pocket Books editor John Ordover just updated his Q&A board to include some interesting new information on the upcoming Captain Proton! story:

    Query from: Corey
    I see the next issue of AMAZING STORIES will feature at Captain Proton story by D.W. "Prof" Smith. Will this be an excerpt from the PROTON book, or a new story just for the magazine?

    Response from: John Ordover
    It's the first chapter in a Captain Proton serial that will have the second chapter in our Captain Proton book.:)

    Query from: Corey
    So with the Captain Proton serial, we're basically getting an incomplete story. Might the story ever be completed?

    Response from: John Ordover
    It might, but -- you know, you'll just have to read it to understand. It's not so much =what happens= in these stories and the serial but how it is told.:)

    I have to say I'm not exactly that happy with this turn of events, considering Amazing Stories isn't sold here in the Netherlands, as far as I know. Find more Ordover answers at his Q&A board.

    Continuum Chats
    Christian (3:54 pm CST)
    Blush! Shame! On Thursday, I reported Patrick Stewart would be chatting at the Continuum. Unfortunately, it appears I mis-read the date, and Stewart won't be chatting until about a month from now, on the 29th of July. The Continuum did announce one other chat - namely with Robert Duncan McNeill on the 22nd of July. Sorry for the huge mistake with the Stewart chat.

    'Free Enterprise' Soundtrack Review
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    The new edition of Eon Magazine contains a review of the soundtrack of 'Free Enterprise,' the independent movie starring William Shatner. The review contains the following rather nice tidbit about how Shatner's contribution to the soundtrack actually came into being:

    I had the life-affirming pleasure of actually watching the video of this number being filmed, meaning that I got to watch Shatner rap, perform Shakespeare, and do some classic Captain Kirk acting moves while he pretended to be stabbed by members of the rap group on stage. It's for that reason that I can't give a clear-eyed review of this CD: for an old Trekkie like myself, it just marks too awe-inspiring a life experience. Trust Shatner to not only embrace the ludicrousness of the concept but to somehow, against all hope, make it strangely bracing and cool. There's also a hidden track here buried at the end of the CD which sets a deleted Shatner monologue to music in highly amusing fashion, and a lexicon of politically incorrect pop culture "Ebionics" (some of which do not show up in the movie) that are pretty funny. All in all, it's a damned good party album, and what good party album shouldn't end with William Shatner rapping?

    In the full review, the soundtrack is awarded an A by Jeff Bond.

    Evil Avatar BotF Reviews
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    Steve Erhardt at Evil Avatar has written not one, but two 'Birth of the Federation'-related reviews. The first one deals with the actual game, and isn't that positive:

    Well, I guess it was bound to happen. After belting out an impressive series hits (Mech Commander, European Air War, Falcon 4.0, Rollercoaster Tycoon, Mechwarrior III) worthy of their glory days, Microprose has finally tripped with Birth of the Federation. I guess if there was any game that could so completely take the wind out of Microprose's sails, it would have been one based on a Star Trek license.

    In the end, Erhardt ends up awarding the game just two stars in his full review. He is a lot more positive about the strategy guide, which he has also reviewed:

    Geez, talk about a rock and a hard place. If you've already read my review of BotF, then you may be confused about my rating on the Strategy Guide above. The problem here is that we have a really good strategy guide for a really bad game, and that's about as perfect a conundrum as ever comes down the pike.

    The full review is quite probably the only review of the strategy guide to have appeared on the net - you can find it here.

    Starfleet Academy Producer News
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    Gamespot is reporting that Alan Pavish, who oversaw production of Interplay's 'Starfleet Academy' game as Executive Producer, has left Interplay to work for Origin Software. The press release mentions that his current game(s) are still kept secret.

    Happy Birthdays!
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    Today is the 57th birthday of Kurtwood Smith, who guest starred as Annorax in Voyager's 'Year of Hell.' He also appeared as the Federation President in Star Trek VI. Yesterday was the 72nd birthday of Brock Peters, who guest starred as Sisko's father on DS9 and as Admiral Cartwright in the movies.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    -Tomorrow at 16:00 BST, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Starship Down.' At 17:00 BST, they'll be showing Voyager's 'Basics, Part One.' Thanks go out to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective for this.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating Voyager's 'Das Erinnern' at 03:35 CET, followed 50 minutes later by 'Das Ritual.'

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    As every day, the Trek BBS is extremely active, perhaps more so because the weekend has just started. Take a look at some of the active threads:

    -If Voyager is cancelled, should the rest of Star Trek end as well?

    -In one of the most off-topic threads ever: Have you ever been in love?

    -In a mega-thread - what are your favourite races?

    Find more threads at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    The weather is incredible around here! I spent most of the day outside enjoying the sun, and only got in to update TrekToday when it became too dark. Tomorrow I'll try preparing parts of the update in the morning - hopefully that'll mean an earlier update, but with this wonderful weather I'm not guaranteeing anything ;-).

    Friday July 2, 1999
    Starfleet Journal July Issue
    Christian (4:58 pm CST)
    Just a day late, the good people at the Starfleet Journal have put up Volume 2, Issue 7 of their monthly e-zine. This month, they've got lots of new reviews (most of them about the DS9 finale), the usual high-quality set of columns (one of them even mentions TrekToday, so how could I not like them?) and an unusually large amount of letters. All that and more can be found at the Starfleet Journal.

    Ain't It Cool News Confirms Moore
    Christian (4:28 pm CST)
    Glen at Ain't It Cool News has confirmed the news of Ron D. Moore leaving Voyager:

    Coaxial is now able to confirm that these reports are accurate: Ron Moore is leaving Voyager & there were "issues" between Moore and Braga. Something had to give, and now Moore is gone.

    The full report can be found here. Thanks go out to TrekWeb for the link.

    Voyager Hack Job Update
    Christian (4:28 pm CST)
    Vidiot just updated his Voyager Hack Job page again, this time including information on which scenes were hacked out of 'Bride of Chaotica' in order to get more commercial time. In total, 2 minutes and 6 seconds were removed from the episode, while six seconds were added to the ep. The Voyager Hack Job Page contains details on precisely which scenes were cut, and also contains a plea from Vidiot himself for less commercials.

    Sci-Fi Channel Theme Weeks
    Christian (4:27 pm CST)
    Over the past four days, the Sci-Fi Channel has been running a special DeForest Kelley-themed week. According to Cinescape, we might soon be seeing more such weeks:

    On a few occasions this summer, according to Ultimate TV, Sci-Fi has decided to air the original series episodes according to recurring themes. [...] Klingons will be at the forefront from July 26th-29th, when "Errand of Mercy," "Friday's Child," "The Trouble with Tribbles," and "Day of the Doves" air. But the theme which will have yours truly tuned in is Shatner In Love, which features Jim Kirk hamming it up with a love interest in "The City on the Edge of Forever," "The Gamesters of Triskelion," "Elaan of Troyius," and "Whom Gods Destroy."

    I'm rather surprised they didn't go for a Shatner In Love Month instead - surely the Original Series would have enough material to sustain that :-)? In any case, find the full report at Cinescape.

    Download The SFC Beta Report
    Christian (4:27 pm CST)
    YnrohKeeg at StarTrekGames.Net has compiled all his Starfleet Command beta reports and put them all in order in Microsoft Word format. Over the past month, Keeg was particpating in the Starfleet Command beta test, during which he wrote up several extremely lengthy reports looking at almost every aspect of the game. Now you can download the full report here.

    Syndication Promo Online
    Christian (4:24 pm CST)
    After putting up 3 Summer Promos yesterday, Mr. Video Productions has now also put up the apparently really good Voyager syndication promos, which were first shown during 'What You Leave Behind.' Vidiot's previews are available in both MPEG and MP3 format, and have lengths from 12 seconds to over a minute. You can find them here.

    Bid For Dinner With Seven!
    Christian (4:23 pm CST)
    During the weekend of the 10th and the 11th of July, Sci-Fi Expo will be organising a convention in Plano, Texas. Confirmed Star Trek guests include Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine) and Mark Shepherd (Morn), who will also be attending dinner on the 10th of July at 7:00pm. There are still 4 seats available at the Mark Shepherd table at $69.00 each, while the organisation is auctioning the two remaining Jeri Ryan seats:

    We have two seats available for Jeri Ryan. We will open a silent auction for these two seats. Please email us with your bid by July 5 at 9pm. Winners will be notified by phone/email and must have payment to us by July 7. (Visa/MC/AmEx accepted) Please send name/address/phone number and bid amount to: toyshow@aol.com.

    Personally I'd say dinner with Shepherd would be much more interesting (you'd get to hear what Morn would sound like!), but that may just be me. More info on the convention can be found here - thanks go out to the official Jeri Lynn Ryan Homepage for the link.

    Syndicated 'Genre' Shows In Trouble
    Christian (4:23 pm CST)
    A news item at Cinescape Online looks at the problems surrounding syndicated 'genre' shows, now that series such as 'Star Trek: Deep Space Nine' and 'Hercules' are ending. The article also talks about the reasons for the decline in popularity of syndicated series, which of course also affected DS9 over the past few years:

    The [Hollywood Reporter] suggests that genre syndicated series ratings have been slipping in recent years, and that even the stronger series, such as Hercules, Xena and Earth: Final Conflict, saw declining numbers in key demographics last year. Reasons for this are speculated to be that there were too many shows competing for the same audience (as many as 22 programs at one point), and that the overseas market for American hour-long action-drama series has been soft with foreign broadcasters playing local programing rather than such fare.

    The full update can be found at Cinescape.

    Quake II Trek Conversion
    Christian (4:23 pm CST)
    Andrew Wyllie, who also created the Star Trek 'Total Conversion' for Quake I, has released version 1.1 of his Quake II conversion. The conversion allows you to play aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise-D, assuming you own the full version of Quake II and have installed the mod. Take a look at the official announcement:

    After a long wait, it's finally here. For a more or less complete list of new features, see the release history page. I have tried to iron out most of the bugs, and at the time of release I am not aware of any, but with the large number of new features it's quite likely that some will come to light, so don't be surprised if a bugfix release comes out at some stage. There are a few things I might still like to add or change, but I've kept everyone waiting long enough already, so here it is in its current state. I hope you enjoy it, and feel free to send me your comments.

    More can found at the official Star Trek: The Quake Simulation site. Thanks go out to Blue's News for pointing me to this.

    Hello World!
    Christian (4:22 pm CST)
    Short (and late) update today... I just got home from a rather official event, and I'm actually still wearing my tie, which definitely adds to the experience ;-).

    Thursday July 1, 1999
    Voyager Summer Promos
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    The Universe has a report up about three new Voyager summer promos which have been released by Paramount. The videos should be available at Mr. Video Productions, but unfortunately the site is down again, so you'll have to get them from the Universe's news page instead. The three promos apparently deal with 'Ships,' 'Hers' (Hers?) and 'Worlds.'

    'Birth of the Federation' Reviews
    Christian (3:49 pm CST)
    The people at the Trek Gaming Alliance have posted links to several reviews of the 'Birth of the Federation' game:

    After having played the game myself, I can definitely recommend it, at least for the first 200 turns. After that, it seems to get incredibly slow on my Pentium 200, and it also gets slightly boring. Still, with five empires to choose from you should have enough to do even if you decide only to play games lasting the first 200 turns :-).

    Win A Great CCG Prize
    Christian (3:34 pm CST)
    The Decipher site is reporting about a great prize which can be won at this weekend's Origins Game Fair in Columbus, Ohio:

    Decipher's Marketing guys called in from Origins Game Fair in Columbus, Ohio, to report some late breaking news - good news - that should interest every Star Trek [Customizable Card Game] fan who'll visit the Game Fair this weekend. The champion of Saturday's Star Trek CCG Sealed Deck event at Origins will take home a complete set of Blaze of Glory (limited) uncut sheets. Is that hot or what?

    The sheets are from the recent press run of the expansion set, estimated to release in late July. All 130 cards of the set (50 Rare, 40 Uncommon and 40 Common) are included in the three-sheet set. Don't look for foil cards - that's a separate print job and it's not included in the prize. So, what do you think this prize is worth? For comparison's sake, let me lay this on you. Star Trek CCG Premiere unlimited uncut sheet sets sell for a hundred clams on the Eccentric Order Web site. Trekedelic, baby.

    Info on the actual event can be found here.

    'Bride of Chaotica' Final Ratings
    Christian (3:22 pm CST)
    Are bad. What a surprise.

    Last weeks episode got a low 1.7, and was the lowest rated episode ever along with the first run of Juggernaut! Voyager wasn't UPN's highest-rated show, that was "Moesha" with a 1.9! What is more strange is that 7 Days got only 0.1 lower than Voyager!

    The full report can be found here at the Universe. I do hope the show will have even one ratings point left by the end of the summer...

    German Voyager Schedule
    Christian (3:22 pm CST)
    The people at the German Star Trek Index just put up the German air schedule for the third season, which is running again at Sat.1. In the new schedule, two episodes are shown every Saturday, from 15:00 to 17:00, while some episodes aren't repeated anymore the day after. Detailed info on the new schedule can be found here.

    Time Will Tell
    Christian (3:21 pm CST)
    A new article at About.com's Star Trek Fans, written by Julia Houston, looks at how Star Trek will be seen in the future:

    I know I'm not the only Trekker who likes to watch '50s sci-fi movies, and I'm guessing I'm also not the only one who likes to snicker at them occasionally. It's such a risk to project into the future, and it's so easy, looking at these films decades later, to feel superior about their erroneous views on "what might happen." Of course, we're really as clueless now as "they" were then about what the real year 2300 will be like. But that doesn't prevent a great satisfaction and sense of superiority being gained from knowing that "they" were wrong.

    In truth, however, such films reflect not our true projections of the future, but a depiction of the future which will hopefully sell tickets, a depiction of the future that maintains what we like about our society and changes what we don't like. As a consequence, sci-fi films of the '50s typically have much more in common with Leave it to Beaver than they do with any real scientific analysis. Anti-intellectualism, anti-communism and pro-family sentiments conjured up a long run of obsessed geniuses who destroyed themselves in the search for Truth, daring young capitalists who triumphed over alien invasions, and female crew members who were always either botanists or biologists.

    What, then, will the future conclude about our time when they look at Star Trek?

    Houston attempts to answer that question in the full article.

    Insurrection On Pay-Per-View
    Christian (3:21 pm CST)
    According to the Flagship, 'Star Trek: Insurrection' will be shown on various pay-per-view channels in the month of July. The first channel to be reported about is 'DirectTV,' which will apparently be showing the film in a letterboxed and dolby-digital version.

    Shatner Interview Tomorrow
    Christian (3:20 pm CST)
    The official William Shatner Connection is reporting that E! Entertainment will be showing an interview with William Shatner (James T. Kirk) tomorrow at 12:30pm Eastern Time. The interview was taped sometime last month.

    Michael Westmore At Make-Up Show
    Christian (3:20 pm CST)
    The Continuum's Larry Nemecek has put up a short article about the upcoming International Makeup Artist Trade Show, which Star Trek makeup designer Michael Westmore will be attending:

    Fans of Star Trek's alien looks and the work of designer Michael Westmore can meet him and see his Star Trek work in person at a show sponsored by Make-Up Artist Magazine in Pasadena over the July 24-25 weekend. Also appearing at the International Makeup Artist Trade Show are artist/designers Steve Johnson of XFX and Ve Neill.

    Ticket prices and the show's location can be found in the full article.

    Patrick Stewart Chat Today
    Christian (3:19 pm CST)
    At 06:30pm Pacific Time, the official Continuum will be hosting a live chat with Patrick Stewart (Jean-Luc Picard). You can submit advance questions about subjects such as the recent Star Trek X rumours by going here, while info on how to participate can be found here.

    Sorbo Article Now Online
    Christian (3:19 pm CST)
    TrekWeb already reported on this about a week ago, but back then the online version was only available for AOL subscribers. A new article by People Magazine's Sandy Nicholson looks at the recent career moves of Kevin Sorbo, who until recently starred as 'Hercules' on the series with the same name. In the article, he talks about his family live, and his decision to quit Hercules in favour of a new syndicated sci-fi series based on the works of the late Gene Roddenberry. You can find the full article here.

    Convention Article
    Christian (3:18 pm CST)
    A new article at the LA Weekly web site, written by Athima Chansanchai, takes a look at the phenomenon of science-fiction conventions, and then especially Star Trek conventions. Apparently appearing at conventions is a rather lucrative deal for the celebrities:

    For a weekend gig at a sci-fi convention, actors are paid appearance fees ranging anywhere from $500 to $40,000 -- the high-end rate for headliners. The average is between $7,500 and $10,000. Some actors supplement their income by charging willing fans $5 to $20 for an autograph. Other duties of the celebs include participating in Q&A sessions and sometimes hosting auctions.

    With convention registration running sometimes as high as $75 for coveted reserved seating (to get a better place in line for autographs) -- regular admission starts around $17 -- and with attendance of up to 5,000 fans (for Creation Con's Pasadena Grand Slam in April), getting in on the action can be quite lucrative.

    The full article also contains a few quotes from George Takei (Hikaru Sulu), one of the most active convention celebrities. Find the full article here.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:18 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the TOS episode 'Shore Leave,' the last in their series of DeForest Kelley tributes.

    -The Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective is reporting that British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Rejoined' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST.

    -Tomorrow morning at 01:10 CET, German Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Die Nachfolge' (The Nagus). At 15:00 tomorrow, they'll be showing 'Der Steinwandler.'

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:18 pm CST)
    Some of the current active threads at the Trek BBS:

    -What do you think about the recent rumours that Voyager may be cancelled already this year?

    -Do you think there are actually aliens out there?

    -How is Star Wars currently performing at the box office?

    Find more threads at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:16 pm CST)
    Sorry for the ad banner at the top of the page - unfortunately it became necessary to cover the costs of the Trek Nation. I really love how TrekToday and Trek BBS (not to mention the hosted sites Warp Eleven and ST-Hypertext) have been able to get extremely popular, but unfortunately that does come with high bandwidth costs - and the Nation's growth doesn't seem to be stopping at least for the near future. I do hope your enjoyment of the site won't be completely destroyed by the ads - and perhaps you'll even find something useful by clicking on them :-).

    (Of course, if you disagree with this, or have something to say about anything else Trek Today / Trek Nation-related, please send it to feedback@treknation.com, so we can print in the mailbag ;-)

    Wednesday June 30, 1999
    Non-Fiction 2000 Release Schedule
    Christian (3:44 pm CST)
    Pocket Books editor Margaret Clark just posted the Pocket Books non-fiction release schedule for the year 2000:

    April -- Star Trek Trivia
    July -- Star Trek Calendar month.
    August -- Star Trek Make-up & Props
    September -- Deep Space Nine Companion
    October -- Star Trek Paper Universe
    October-- Star Trek Science
    November -- Starship Enterprise

    Details on what can actually be found in those books can be found at Clark's Q&A Board.

    'Starfleet Academy' Rumour Reappears
    Christian (3:44 pm CST)
    Mr. Showbiz just put up a rather interesting report by Jeffrey Wells about the future of the Star Trek franchise. His report deals with the fact that Patrick Stewart is apparently getting both too expensive ($14 million) and too irritating (script input) to be used in future movies, especially now that Insurrection's performance was so disappointing. The solution will apparently be to get rid of Stewart:

    Word is that veteran Trek scribe Brannon Braga and series producer Rick Berman are penning a two-hour pilot for a new Trek TV series that may be used as the basis of the next Trek feature. Tongue-in-cheeky insiders are referring to the new Trek project, allegedly a kind of Top Gun plot revolving around the Starfleet Academy, as — take your pick — Buffy, the Starfleet Officer; Ten Things I Hate About Klingons; or Dawson's Trek. The official working title, I'm told, is Star Trek: Flight Academy. (Doesn't this sound like a Steve Guttenberg movie?)

    The days of Star Trek: Voyager and Deep Space Nine, both Paramount-produced TV series, are on the wane. Paramount publicist Blaise Noto acknowledges that a new series is being developed. I'm told that the Braga-Berman Top Gun script is being called a TV pilot script, but if it's well received it may become the basis of a new Star Trek movie.

    This would definitely seem to tie in with the recent comments by Paramount chairman Sherry Lansing, who recently said they wanted to 're-invent [Star Trek] and do something fresh and original.' In my opinion, it would also mean the death of Star Trek As We Know It. Find more in the full report, but please do remember that it certainly hasn't been confirmed yet - as a matter of fact, Paramount even denies the rumours later on in the story. Thanks go out to 'Maximum High' for pointing me to this.

    Personally I wouldn't believe any of these rumours until officially confirmed - this appears to be just an old rumour re-surfacing, and it doesn't seem to fit with the 25th Century rumour TrekWeb recently reported. Of course, if you have a different opinion, please let me know at feedback@treknation.com, and I might even print it in the upcoming letters section :-).

    Voyager To Be Cancelled?
    Christian (3:43 pm CST)
    Before I begin with the actual rumour report, let me add in a huge disclaimer. At first I wasn't sure if I was going to post the below rumours, most notably because they only came from one source, and perhaps also because the rumours certainly weren't what I wanted to hear. However, this is actually from a source I trust rather a lot, and I would also have reported on it had it been published on another site. Furthermore, it certainly fits with some of the predictions ratings-watchers have already been making over the past few months. Having said that, please do still take the below as purely unconfirmed rumours.

    Lord Spock just sent in the following extremely alarming report:

    I say this with a heavy heart, but there is reason to believe that Voyager IS going to be CANCELLED at the end of its SIXTH SEASON or earlier. Yesterday, a meeting of the programming department took place, where the list of shows that are in danger of being cancelled was discussed. Voyager was VERY VERY close to being shut down on this day already, but the people in charge first wanted to see if the ratings will improve.

    The only people who currently know this are about 100+ programming executives, and Rick Berman himself, who was told in private. If the ratings sink any lower than they already are now, and the mid-season ratings turn out horrible, they'll just cut us off.

    Again, this has not been confirmed by anyone yet, but if it is true, this certainly doesn't come as a surprise - Voyager's ratings have been sinking a *lot* over the past year, and the show is rather expensive. Personally I'd say this might actually be a good thing, if Voyager really is beyond saving - at least, if there will still be a new series after Voyager. Thanks go out to Lord Spock for submitting this, even if most of us probably wouldn't have wanted to have to hear this ;-).

    German 'Insurrection' Video
    Christian (3:32 pm CST)
    The German Daily Trekkies newsletter is reporting that the German 'Insurrection' Video will be released on the 8th of July by CIC. You can currently already pre-order the video here, and if you do that, you'll get a free poster thrown in. The video will cost DM 39,95 (about $20).

    Official Louie Cruz Beltran Site
    Christian (3:32 pm CST)
    "Who?" Well, Louie Cruz Beltran, of course, the brother of Robert Beltran (Chakotay). The people at the official Robert Beltran site just added a link to the official site of his brother, who is apparently a rather active musician:

    Presently, Louie's group, Louie Beltran and the West Coast Players are actively performing various venues and concerts throughout the west coast. Their most recent concert was at the Galaxy Ball, a celebrity gala benefit, hosted by Robert Beltran, of the TV series, Star Trek Voyager.

    You can find the official site here.

    12" Figures Boxed Photos
    Christian (3:30 pm CST)
    The Raving Toy Maniac, who has now updated a record-breaking three days in a row, just posted a set of boxed photos of the second wave of 12-inch action figures. The 8 pictures show Ensign Pavel Checkov, Seven of Nine, a Mugato and Dr. Leonard McCoy in their boxes, both opened and un-opened. You can find the pictures here.

    Trek 'Golden Headset' Nominees
    Christian (3:30 pm CST)
    TrekWeb has re-posted the list of nominees for the 1999 edition of the 'Golden Headset' awards, dealing with (presumably) audio novels. Take a look at info about the awards and the Star Trek-related nominees:

    These are the nominations for this year's Golden Headset Awards. The winners will be announced on 10/31/99 on Maryland Cable and three days later on Diane Chapman's High Visibility on KUCI in Irvine, Calf. As well as being written up in my AUDIOWORLD column, Affaire De Coeur magazine-November Issue, and Sonic Boom magazine- December issue. Please note we have added two new categories this year.

    Best Audio Series
    - Alien Voices [by Leonard Nimoy & John DeLancie - TT]
    - Star Trek

    Best Author(s) Reading his/hers/their Own Work
    -Walter Koenig- Warper Factors
    -Armin Shimerman- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine- The 34th Rule

    The full list of nominees can be found here.

    Even More "Vulcan's Heart"
    Christian (3:29 pm CST)
    The amount of publicity this novel is able to generate is simply amazing. A new article at E! Online contains a few statements from Pocket Books editor John Ordover about the Spock/Saavik wedding:

    Ordover explains that what humans think of as a wedding, Vulcans think of as a betrothal. Hence, the participants aren't giddy with honeymoon plans because they're not going to, um, consummate the relationship until they're both officially mad with pon farr--that crazy Vulcan mating thing. (See: "Amok Time." Again.)

    [...]

    The editor says the Spock wedding was a dream storyline opened up to the novel's writers, Josepha Sherman and Susan Shwartz, by a line from a Next Generation episode in which Picard remarks about attending the wedding of Sarek's son. The decision to marry off one of the Enterprise's most eligible bachelors made, "then the question came down to who does he marry," Ordover says. "We knew that whoever we picked we were going to be upsetting a lot of the audience," he says, adding that some simply will be ticked that Spock "isn't marrying them."

    The full article has a bit more on the background of the novel. Thanks go out to John Ordover for sending in the link to this. In related news:


    Happy Birthday Jeri Taylor!
    Christian (3:28 pm CST)
    Today is the birthday of Jeri Taylor, who's been involved with Star Trek since the Next Generation. She co-created Star Trek Voyager, on which she also served as executive producer for a while. Besides that, she's written two Voyager novels ("Mosaic" and "Pathways"), and the novelization of TNG's "Unification" episode.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:27 pm CST)
    -At 9:00pm, UPN will be repeating Voyager's 'Gravity.' Take a look at how the official Continuum describes the episode:

    'Gravity' - courtesy & copyright Paramount Pictures A shuttle carrying Tuvok, Paris and The Doctor disappears into a collapsing sinkhole and crash lands on a deserted wasteland. While the U.S.S. Voyager tries to rescue them from this risky area of space, the away team befriends Noss, an exotic alien woman who's also trapped on the planet. Soon, she falls in love with Tuvok and although it's illogical for a Vulcan, he finds himself attracted to her too.

    Thanks go out to the Continuum for both the description and the image, which is of course copyrighted by Paramount Pictures.

    -The Sci-Fi Channel is continuing its tribute to DeForest Kelley, which I personally think is absolutely great of them. Today they'll be showing "The Empath" at 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time.

    -In the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Indiscretion' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST, according to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective.

    -Tomorrow morning at 01:35 CET, German Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Chula - Das Spiel' (Move Along Home). At 15:00 they'll be showing 'Die Nachfolge' (The Nagus). BTW, could someone who speaks better German than I do perhaps e-mail Sat.1 to complain to them about their DS9 preview pages? For some weird reason it's showing a picture of the U.S.S. Voyager.

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:26 pm CST)
    As usual, the Trek BBS is filled with interesting threads, including the following three:

    -How come 'New Sidney' isn't a Federation world, while the mame so clearly is inspired by Earth?

    -Star Trek books usually aren't canon, but what is the status of Spock's marriage in "Vulcan's Heart"?

    -Help us draw up the official Trek BBS Bill of Rights!

    Lots more can be found at the Trek BBS, and of course you're more than welcome to participate in the discussions!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:26 pm CST)
    Just as a reminder to everyone, if all goes well we'll soon be able to start running a special mailbag / letters section. If you have anything at all to say about anything to do with the Trek Nation (for instance, the featured articles), TrekToday (a news item you find particularly interesting) or just Star Trek in general, please send it to feedback@treknation.com and we will publish it! Of course, we won't ever be printing your e-mail address, unless you specify otherwise.

    Tuesday June 29, 1999
    Is Star Trek Dead?
    Christian (4:21 pm CST)
    According to the first installment of our weekly "The Future's Franchise" article series, it is. Take a look at how writer Jeff 'Koganuts' Koga begins his article:

    Star Trek's Future? It's dead, Jim.

    I'll be honest with you. I don't expect this rant to have any far-reaching effects whatsoever. After all, this is just an editorial - I am just a regular geek and a Star Trek fan. And as a fan, I have supported the franchise for over 13 years now -- almost half my life thus far -- but recent events have led me to believe that Star Trek is dead. And I need to get this off my chest because it has been bugging me for some time.

    In the rest of the article, Jeff goes on to explain why he believes the franchise is over, as you can read here. This is the first in a weekly series of articles which will be running at the Trek Nation over the summer, and in which each week someone will explore the current state of the Star Trek franchise and its future. If all goes as planned, next week's installment will be written by Delta Blues reviewer Jim Wright.

    If, after reading Jeff Koga's article, you have anything to say about it, please send in your comments / complaints / rants to feedback@treknation.com - if all goes well and we get enough replies, we might even be launching a special mailbag feature soon. Please, if you have any comments about anything at all happening at the Trek Nation or at TrekToday, please send them in to this address and we might actually publish them :-).

    Margaret Clark Answers
    Christian (4:15 pm CST)
    Pocket Books non-fiction editor Margaret Clark just updated her Q&A board again, proving that after eight months of online absence she now really is back. Take a look at one of the most interesting questions and answers:

    Query from: Jim McCain
    Got to ask one more question. Tell us a bit about Andrew Robinson's Garek book and when can we expect to see it?

    Response from: Margaret Clark
    Ah, a question. Since before your sun burned… sorry (that's for the site and the bad gag.) A Stitch in Time, just trying it out…

    If you have seen Mr. Robinson at a convention, you may have heard him read from Garak's diary. This book used those diaries as a springboard. It all starts rather simply, Dr. Bashir writes a to Garak. Just a note like, "How are you?" From the ruins of Cardassia Garak, tells his old lunch companion "how he is?"

    The running gag this month here at Pocket? Margaret's book must be fourth quarter (September -December 2000)? I think right now it is October 2000.

    Find more here.

    New Optical Data Network
    Christian (4:09 pm CST)
    Editor Adam Bailey just sent out issue 88 of the Optical Data Network, the bi-weekly Star Trek newsletter. Take a look at what this week's edition brings you:

    This issue of Optical Data Network returns to a more normal size, including the standard number of NewsBits (slightly longer than normal). I joked last issue about how much game news was taking over ODN, and this issue is no different. Things have calmed down a bit on some fronts (E3), but with the release of the Starfleet Command demo, and seemingly dozens of games down the pike, it's going to be a busy year. I chose to include the article about Kelley's memorial, as many people have been asking about it (although there have been more than one). The UK Update rounds out this issue's set of regular features, once again doing its part in trying to make some sense of British schedules.

    A number of special features return this issue, some from longer slumbers than others. The Vulcan Cafe spoiler article is back, now that plans are in motion for the next season of Voyager. Speaking of which, the Cafe has teamed up with TrekWeb.COM for what promises to be an interesting collaboration. (There have been a few other major shifts in Trek fan sites, which I wanted to write about for this issue, but time and space precluded that.) This issue has an updated Book/Media article from David Henderson at Psi Phi, this time sorted both by date and by series. And finally, the Convention listing returns with the small sprinkling of upcoming events. No, I didn't leave August off, there just aren't any. I remember when summer time brought dozens of conventions all over the globe, so this is getting depressing. I have in mind an editorial I plan to write for a future issue about why conventions and fan clubs are dying (at least, in my opinion), but again: time and space.

    The full issue can be found here.

    Sev Trek DeForest Kelley Tribute
    Christian (4:06 pm CST)

    Sev Trek header
    Sev Trek - cartoon spoofs of Star Trek. Copyright 1999 by John Cook.

    12" Action Figure Photos
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    The Raving Toy Maniac has posted several photos of the second wave of twelve-inch action figures. Pictured are Seven of Nine, the Mugato, and Dr. Leonard McCoy from the Original Series. You can find it all here.

    More "Vulcan's Heart"
    Christian (3:54 pm CST)
    I doubt any Trek Pocket Book over the past few years has received more publicity than "Vulcan's Heart,' the new Josepha Sherman / Susan Shwartz novel dealing with Spock's wedding. Now the Daily Sci-Fi also has a news item up about the book:

    Everyone's favorite alien ties the knot in new novel.

    Love may be highly illogical, but that's not stopping Spock from getting hitched in Vulcan's Heart, a new Star Trek novel from Pocket Books

    The full news article gives away some major Vulcan's Heart plot points, and also includes Leonard Nimoy's unforgettable rendition of "Where Is Love?" in RealAudio format. In related news, Pocket Books editor John Ordover just sent in news of this Amazon page which includes several great reviews of the book. Unfortunately it still hasn't arrived in the shops here in the Netherlands, by the way :-(.

    Patrick Stewart Chat
    Christian (3:54 pm CST)
    On Thursday, the official Continuum will be hosting a live chat with Patrick Stewart, who is of course best known for his role as Captain Jean-Luc Picard. You can already submit questions here, while info on how to participate can be found here.

    Sci-Fi Channel De Kelley Tribute
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    Now it's clear why the Sci-Fi Channel is currently showing TOS episodes from all three seasons - according to TV Guide, it's part of a special tribute to DeForest Kelley:

    The Sci-Fi Channel is honoring the late DeForest Kelley this week by presenting episodes of Star Trek that prominently feature his character, the cranky Dr. McCoy. Tuesday through Thursday, Sci-Fi will air For the Earth is Hollow, The Empath and Shore Leave; each episode airs at 7 and 11 pm/ET.

    On a related note, I just spoke with Faith, who had the following rather nice news item about the Paramount tribute to DeForest Kelley:

    In the DeForest Kelley tribute, the last clip shown was from "Journey to Babel"... at the end, where McCoy tells both Kirk and Spock to be quiet... "Well, I finally got the last word."

    Brent Spiner Is Conan O'Brien
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    A review by Ted Anthony of the new 'South Park' movie includes the news that Brent Spiner (Data) actually played the role of talk show host Conan O'Brien in the movie. Find the full review here.

    Happy Birthdays!
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    Today is the birthday of Corey Allen, who directed the TNG pilot 'Encounter at Farpoint.' Also, yesterday was the birthday of Alice Krige, who starred as the Borg Queen in First Contact.

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:51 pm CST)
    A few current discussions at the Trek BBS:

    -What are your favourite Star Trek novels? And who are your favourite authors?

    -Was William Shatner really guilty of over-acting when he starred as Kirk?

    -Would Peter David's New Frontier series make for a good television series?

    Find more at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:50 pm CST)
    Things are finally getting back to normal around here - TrekToday updates are still late, but that should change tomorrow as well. The minor re-fit of the Trek Nation itself is also done - the site now includes a great new top logo and a wonderful background, all designed by the incredibly talented Devin Bryant.

    Major link of the day - Boycott Yahoo! and Geocities. In their new terms of service, they mention that all the content you upload to a Geocities page automatically becomes the property of Yahoo! and Geocities! What's worse, if you're already there, you can't remove your site without agreeing to those terms! Please visit the boycott page to see what you can do.

    One of the things recommended there is moving your site away from GeoCities to another host, which, incidentally, is what the Star Trek Nielsen Ratings Information Database will soon be doing , as in a few weeks it'll be hosted right here at the Trek Nation :-)! No, this move has nothing to do with the GeoCities licence change, but I thought this was a nice tie-in to announce it :-). You can find more info on this move at the current front page of the Nielsen Ratings Info Database.

    Monday June 28, 1999
    Voyager Season Six Rumours
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    Lord Spock just sent in a bunch of Voyager season six news again - including an updated schedule which goes as far as 'Barge of the Dead,' news of Paramount spreading disinformation, and some other general news. You can find the report here, but please do keep in mind that none of this has been confirmed yet.

    More 'Survival Instinct' Spoilers
    Christian (3:43 pm CST)
    NOTE: Below you'll find some major spoilers for the second Voyager episode of next season, 'Survival Instinct.' Click here to avoid reading this.

    Again, click here to avoid reading these spoilers and move on to the next update.

    TrekWeb just re-posted a message which the webmaster of the Official Scarlett Pomers Homepage recently posted to AOL:

    First of all, in answer to the question of who wrote "Survival Instinct": I can confirm absolutly that Ronald D. Moore is, in fact, the writer. And it's a wonderful script. My source said, "Survival Instinct is terrific. I love what he wrote for [Naomi]."

    This episode is directed by the terrific Terry Windell, who also directed "Dark Frontier Part Two". A touch of triva, Terry Windell has directed 3 episodes of Voyager, and Scarlett has been lucky to have appeared in 2 out of the three.

    More can be found by going here.

    'Weekend with Alaimo' Report
    Christian (3:38 pm CST)
    N'Juhaal just mailed me to let me know that 'Kira-Nerys' at kardasi.com has posted several reports and pictures of the recent 'Weekend with Marc Alaimo and Friends,' which took place two weeks ago in Agoura Hills, California. You can find the report here.

    'Insurrection' Italy Report
    Christian (3:37 pm CST)
    The Daily Variety's Don Groves has written a new foreign box office report, which also includes a short mention of 'Star Trek: Insurrection:'

    "Star Trek Insurrection" took off in Italy with $281,000 in three days on 80 prints — no great shakes but enough to earn top spot in a depressed market. Its cume is $43.2 million.

    Find more in the full report. Thanks go out to Hans Bushan for reporting this.

    Cirroc Lofton's Current Project
    Christian (3:37 pm CST)
    SyFy World has a report up on what Cirroc Lofton (Jake) is currently doing:

    Cirroc Lofton, ex-Jake DS9, will be playing a supporting role in the new Showtime Cable series "The Hoop Life." Lofton plays a 17-year-old basketball prodigy who finds himself in this inside look at professional basketball. The two-hour movie premiere is supposed to be shown this month, and it will turn into a full-fledged cable series.

    Thanks go out to SyFy's Michael Hinman for reporting this.

    Jammer's DS9 Finale Review
    Christian (3:37 pm CST)
    Slightly delayed, Jamahl Epsicokhan at Star Trek: Hypertext has posted his review of 'What You Leave Behind,' the DS9 series finale. Take a look at his final two paragraphs as DS9 episode reviewer:

    If there's any other disappointment to be found in "What You Leave Behind," I'd say it would be within what we didn't see rather than what we did. Most notably lacking is some sort of scene that answers the question of Bajor in the political sense. Will Bajor ever join the Federation? Presumably so, but there's no mention of such in dialog, which seems like a huge omission considering that was Sisko's mission in the first place. The closing sense is more one of "life goes on," with Kira now commanding the station instead of Sisko. That's fine, but a look at Bajor's new role in the post-war Federation would've been nice. I'm sure there are other issues that might've been nice to see this season (which we'll revisit in the season recap article), but I'd say this is the most evident oversight.

    But not to end on a sour note, because "What You Leave Behind" was anything but a disappointment. There was plenty of closure, lots of good drama, a superb final chapter in the war storyline, and a great sendoff for many of the characters. If only Dukat/Winn weren't such a letdown this would be an easy four-star show, because it tackled a difficult job with surprising adeptness. It satisfactorily answered a great deal of questions while providing the emotional roller-coaster I anticipated. It's tough to say goodbye to this series, but ends must inevitable come. I vote that "What You Leave Behind" makes for a very nice ending.

    Find the full 3,5 star review here.

    Ira Steven Behr Chat Transcript
    Christian (3:36 pm CST)
    The people at the Continuum have put up the transcript of Thursday's chat with Ira Steven Behr, Executive Producer on Deep Space Nine. Take a look at three highlights from the chat:

    EStillborne asks:
    Would you do another episodic television series? What about with a network instead of syndicated?

    Ira Steven Behr:
    Well, my agents are hoping that I'll do another episodic television series. And I'd hate to disappoint my agents... they're all such fragile, emotional people. And I'd hate to do anything that would send them into an emotional turmoil. Or to the Betty Ford clinic. As far as network or syndicated it all depends on the project. I'm developing shows now but whether anyone will buy them remains to be seen. I'm also looking into features, but the writer in features is treated with such lack of respect that I have to say that my instincts lead me to stay in TV.

    GreenSPawn asks:
    Mr. Behr. In every picture I've seen of you, you are wearing glasses. They always seem to be sunglasses. Are they prescription or are you too cool for school?

    Ira Steven Behr:
    Five years after I graduated from college, I met a girl who I had gone to school with on a New York City subway train. We said hello and about the first thing she said to me was, "Boy I really hated you back in those days. You used to walk across campus wearing these mirrored sunglasses, ignoring everyone." "I don't think I saw your eyes for four years." Now you have to understand, this is a person I thought liked me. I haven't taken my sunglasses off since. I don't know what it means.

    Brian Bishop asks:
    Ira: DS9 will be sorely missed! Any chance of a "Vic" CD for those of us without holosuites?

    Ira Steven Behr:
    I just spoke to Jimmy Darren about a half hour before coming here. He just finished recording his CD on which he will sing all the songs he sang on DS9 plus about 6 others. It's going to be called, "This One's From the Heart". I've heard a couple of cuts. it's terrific stuff. Knowing Jimmy and creating the character of Vic Fontaine was one of the surprising pleasures of my years on DS9. I hope he keeps singing. There's a lot of guys who can direct episodes of TV shows... which is what he's been doing for the last 15 years... but there are very few people who can sing "Come Fly With Me".

    It's a pity none of the questions I submitted were asked, but I guess I kinda expected that. In any case, find the full transcript here.

    UK Ratings Report
    Christian (3:36 pm CST)
    The Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective has the UK ratings report for the week starting the 6h of June up. It isn't that exciting, as most Trek episodes on the BBC were pre-empted in favour of sports:

    With no TNG or DS9 on BBC2 because of sport, it was left to Voyager to entertain the ST audience. And even though the entire channel's ratings were bad for that week, Voyager managed to get one of its highest rankings of the year at #13, despite the 1.79m audience.

    Meanwhile, over on Sky, Voyager dropped quite a bit, slipping to an audience of 0.59m. However, since the ratings that week overall for Sky were bad as well, the rankings probably show Voyager's performance better - and Voyager managed to keep itself at a high #5.

    Find more in the full report.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:36 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the Original Series 'The Man Trap' - which is weird, as that is a first season episode, and the rest of the episodes being shown at the moment are second-season episodes.

    -The Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective is reporting that British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Hippocratic Oath' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Der Fall Dax' (Dax) tomorrow at 00:05 CET. At 15:00 CET, they'll be showing 'Der Parasit' (Vortex)

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:35 pm CST)
    Over the past twelve hours, an incredible 46 active discussions have been taking place at the Trek BBS. Take a look at some of the most interesting threads:

    -How should we describe our new Miscellaneous Forum?

    -Would you sleep with an alien?

    -Now that the Starfleet Command demo has been released, what do you think about it?

    Find lots more discussions at the Trek BBS, active as ever!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:35 pm CST)
    Unfortunately, today I wasn't able to spend as much time on the sites as over the weekend, but hopefully I'll have some more time again tomorrow. Status update: