Tag Archives: Augments

Spotlight on an Original Planet – Paradise

Spotlight on an Original Planet – Paradise

Background

In the E2 Star Trek fanfiction stories, it becomes obvious very quickly that the Enterprise needs a planet.

Ceti Alpha V
Ceti Alpha V

Because, in Reflections Down a Corridor, they have gone back in time, to 2037, the Delphic Expanse is not like it was. They learn from a Xyrillian, Tre’ex, that there are a few unclaimed planets. One of them, known in the prime timeline alternate (the ENT episode, Twilight) as Ceti Alpha V, they claim and hold a contest to name it. The top vote-getter is José Torres‘s choice, Paradise.

In Star Trek canon, the planet is barely habitable, but that’s the prime timeline and an alternate. I like to think that, a good century before, things may have been better.

The planet is also known, in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, as being the exile location for Khan Noonien Singh and his followers, during the prime timeline.

Paradise in the Delphic Expanse

Spotlight on an Original Planet – Paradise
Paradise

There is no reason why the NX-01 can’t have a beautiful planet. It does work out a lot of plot points, including how to get the crew and their descendants to survive for the ensuing century, and also how to get them to live, and live well, without being detected by either the people on Earth or the aliens of the Delphic Expanse and elsewhere.

The planet has to be habitable in case the ship becomes overcrowded. It has to be arable. And it must be the kind of place where a lot of different kinds of foods can be grown. But I didn’t want things to be too easy or perfect. Hence the Enterprise needs to claim a second planet, Amity. But Paradise works out well just the same.

Highlights of Living and Working on Paradise

Of course, crops are grown there. Malcolm gets his pineapples, and Shelby grows oranges, too, which Will wants. An elaborate tree-planting ceremony is conducted on August 29th of 2037, where holes are dug in the ground and an orange tree and a coconut palm are planted amidst slips of real paper on which the crew have written their anonymous wishes.

During Entanglements, T’Pol suggests that more permanent settlements might be desired on Paradise, as the male to female ratio remains uneven and it might alleviate some of the sniping.

The Three of Us opens with a baseball game on Paradise, and then, eventually, it becomes the location of the first phase of criminal punishments. In Everybody Knows This is Nowhere, Paradise cannot be visited too often, as that would interfere with the NX-01 from the first kick back in time. But there is one secret mission there, all the same.

By the end of Everybody Knows This is NowhereParadise survives, but the evidence of civilization is lost. This protects the prime timeline rather neatly.

Return to Paradise

Spotlight on an Original Planet – Paradise

Because of the connection with the Augments, and the eventual damage done to the planet, there can be no return unless a lot of terraforming work is done. In the Times of the HG Wells, Admiral Carmen Calavicci and Rick Daniels do talk about Ceti Alpha V, so it’s not completely gone. Perhaps, by then, things are repaired and restored.

Whither Trek? And whither me? AKA where am I going, and why am I in this handbasket?

Whither Trek? And whither me? AKA where am I going, and why am I in this handbasket?

Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?

Whither Trek? And whither me? AKA where am I going, and why am I in this handbasket?
Gaguin – Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?
Gaguin – Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?

When I set out to first write this little trilogy of blog posts about Star Trek fanfiction, I thought about this particular painting quite a bit. I have told you who I am, and where I (and, to some extent, Trek) come from. But where are we going?

The Cloudy Crystal Ball

Of course I have little to no idea of what’s going to happen next.

Whither Trek? And whither me? AKA where am I going, and why am I in this handbasket?
Cloudy crystal ball

And that has never, ever stopped me from speculating.

After all, Star Trek itself is dreams and visions of the future. Some, like communicators and desktop computers, have been scarily accurate.

Others, like tricorders and bio beds, are close to accurate, or are within reach.

And then others, like warp drive, the Third World War, the Augments, etc.?

Not so much.

What’s Next?

For Star Trek, there is likely to be a third film in the JJ Abrams universe, and it will likely come on or around 2016 as that is the 50th anniversary of the TV series. Abrams will not be directing it. It will be interesting to see who gets it. For me, the JJ Abrams universe means more Eriecho.

As for a new series, I imagine there will be one, and it will likely be in the post-Nemesis future, but closer to the JJ Abrams style. It will depend on budgets and audience tastes. Enterprise was given a fairly large budget, but it was still difficult to get across everything that needs to be done and shown within financial restrictions.  At the time, their ratings were not considered to be good. Now, they would be perfectly acceptable.

Any future television series will likely have an even bigger budget than ENT did, and will likely depend more upon green screen technology in order to cut some special effects corners. What is troubling about that is that large budgets mean that ever larger audiences are needed in order for a show to make money. But television audiences are becoming more and more splintered all the time.

Unless this speculative future show has a lot of network brass (and money) backing it, it could very well be set up for failure, much as ENT seems to have been. Science fiction on TV these days is generally not big, beautiful ships. Even Firefly (which is a decade old, by the way) had a lot of set pieces that took place on the ground. It saves money.

So I would expect to see, and would actually hope to see, a series more character-driven and more plot-driven. A series where makeup and costumes and sets matter. A series where acting and writing are top-notch, not only because they are beloved and respected and say something meaningful and win awards but also because, for real, they save network money. A series where the effects exist but don’t overpower the story line and are not the engines that drive character and plot arc decisions.

A girl can dream, can’t she?