Starshine: Welcome dear readers to another Objection! I’m Starshine.
Silverwolf: And I’m Silverwolf and today we’re going to have the age old debate of which is superior: Star Wars or Star Trek. I’m on Team Star Wars.
Starshine: And I am on Team Star Trek. So, silverwolf, I’m going to let you throwdown first: Why do you feel Star Wars is superior?
Silverwolf: Well, I feel like Star Wars is more accessible: you can get a lot out of it just by watching the first film, A New Hope, whereas Star Trek is more distancing since you’d have the watch a few episodes to be compelled. I also enjoy Star Wars more, but that’s a personal preference
Starshine: I’m going to put it out there, I saw Star Wars first. First, Episode I, then Episodes IV-VI, and then the rest of prequels and I do enjoy the films, but I cannot deny Star Trek is superior only because it’s more original, multilayered, and way ahead of its time in terms of casting and storyline…and the fact that the Skywalkers whine all the freaking time.
Silverwolf: I mean, I don’t think that makes the entirety of SW inferior and, if you think about it, both of them have reasons to whine. My gripe is the acting for how Anakin whines, but honestly I’d be pretty emo if I’d grown up as a slave, was banned from loving the love of my life, and had to watch my mother die after being tortured. Additionally, Luke had a damn boring life, and I think every 19 year old complains about a dull life at SOME point.
Starshine: True but they just make them sound obnoxious – you can do whining well, and with purpose but it feels disjointed. I understand Anakin’s pain…
Silverwolf: Well, if we’re going to complain about acting I have 2.5 words for you: James T. Kirk. William Shatner is more wooden than Pinoccho!
Starshine: Woah, woah woah this is not about acting this is about screen writing but if you wanna bring Shatner into this, at least Shatner can emote! And uses his hamminess to aid his appeal!
Silverwolf: OK agreed and yes, Next Gen did have Patrick Stewart (oh yeah, Professor X!) but don’t forget that they were some stellar actors in Star Wars: Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, James Earl Jones…the list goes on. Heck, it was Ford’s break-out role, which led him into Indiana Jones and beyond as one of the defining action heroes of several generations.
Starshine: I’ll give you that Harrison Ford is amazing, but in the casting department we only get to know a fraction of the world of Star Wars and the politics are very limited, which could help in its “broad appeal” but not it’s quality. Not only that but in the original three movies we only get to know three characters well: Luke, Leia, and Han. Star Trek, filmed during the Cold war mind you, hired an African American woman, an Asian, and even wrote a Russian character.
Silverwolf: But comparing a total of 8 hours of film to 20+ hours of a season ofa TV show doesn’t really work the characters in ST get more time to show their character. Also, let’s not forget the Expanded Universe
Starshine: Of both of the series mind you, they both expand outward.
Silverwolf: Star Wars has a HUGE backlog of stories, books, comics, etc. that talk about the universe as a whole. True enough, but I feel Star Wars has a much bigger base of information.
Starshine: Have you read expanded universe Star Trek? I’ll admit I’ve only dabbled in both but I feel they are about equal. Still, there is actually a lot you can do with 8 hours of screen time and I do mean a lot. But there are just somet hings in the movies that could have been better. And Star Trek isn’t perfect; God, the halodeck and the fifth movie, but I think what it comes down to me is story.
Silverwolf: Never saw it, so I wouldn’t know (laughs).
Starshine: And this is just literally looking at the original series for Star Trek and the movies for Star Wars, but Star Wars is the average samurai/swordsman/coming of age story. Is it done well? Beautifully so, amazingly so and it has some good twists but Star Trek never fell into any particular niche or cliché. It got to explore a whole universe of material and I would have loved to see more of adventures of Star Wars but the conflicts are so localized.
Silverwolf: What do you mean by localized? They go to a number of planets and fight the Empire in a number of contexts.
Starshine: But it feels like the rebel group is centered around Han Luke and Leia when its supposed to be this big movement and it never feels like any other aliens are involved in this conflict.
Silverwolf: They show other aspects of it, but you can’t blame the films given the limitations. And we do get snatches of other characters (such as the ever popular Admiral Ackbar).
Starshine: I want more Admiral Ackbar! THIS IS SPACE! GIVE ME ALIENS! Give me diversity! Give me an expansive feel!
Silverwolf: We see a TON of aliens, think about the Mos Eisley Cantina. Also, there are several Mon Calamaris (Ackbar’s race) in RoTJ AND the Ewoks.
Starshine: But most of the resistance is human…oh God the Ewoks.
Silverwolf: Most of the Empire is human too but that is because they’re racists (explained more in the expanded universe).
Starshine: (laughs) LEGIT? How did I miss that? Points for realism!
Silverwolf: Yeah, in fact, the character of Grand Admiral Thrawn in the Expanded Universe is a big piece of that. He’s a big deal because he’s an alien who, through hard work and genius, got into the Imperial High Command. I mean, the Empire is at least partially based on the Nazis after all. Stormtroopers, anyone?
Starshine: It’s very very true. Again, I think Star Trek did space adventures bigger and better. Star Wars had that potential -it just could have been so much more.
Silverwolf: But I think Star Wars is more accessible.
Starshine: Accessible is…a strong word I think. I think Star Wars is more easily processed cause its story is something we all know and relate to but Star Trek isn’t “non-accessible.” A lot of non-Trekkie went to see the movies. Non-Trekkies love Wrath of Khan which is, by the way, a nearly perfect movie.
Silverwolf: True, I have heard it’s quite good.
Starshine: …did you get into a Star Wars/Star Trek battle without having seen Wrath of Khan?
Silverwolf: But even so, the average person is more likely to connect with Star Wars than Star Trek; even the new ST movie had a box office less than HALF that of Revenge of the Sith.
Starshine: True that but that’s just stigma associated with the name. Though Star Trek ‘s films are usually of high quality. Star Wars is 3 for 6 in the quality.
Silverwolf: Depends how you define quality, but I won’t argue there. Though there are a few less than stellar Star Trek movies.
Starshine: True. Out of 11 there are 5 really “bad” ones. So…better odds I think. Honestly, I think Star Trek just has a much better track record, and it’s more innovative. There’s nothing wrong with Star Wars but it could have been so much more.
Silverwolf: But can’t you say that about anything? I feel like that’s not a good enough defense of Star Trek
Starshine: How is it not? That Star Trek went places where Star Wars could have gone but ultimately didn’t, in between cliches, bad screen wriitng for the prequels, and no one telling George Lucas that some of his ideas were awful?
Silverwolf: Cliches is a bit harsh of a word choice if you ask me; it’d have been more cliche for Luke to end up with Leia. And there were a lot of interesting ideas in the prequel trilogy, there were just some bad choices that steered things wrong. To be honest, I actually enjoy Episode I a lot.
Starshine: Actually if Luke and Leis got together, it would have been interesting. How to deal with incest; that would have boldly gone where no series had gone before. I do like Episode I a lot -it was the midichlorian bullshit ruined the whole thing.
Silverwolf: As I said, a few bad choices. I mean, if we’re going in that direction….Star Trek Voyager, ’nuff said.
Starshine: Star Trek Voyager was subtly awesome. You just can’t appreciate it.
Silverwolf: It’s the only ST series I’ve watched extensively…and honestly I feel like it was just weird. A lot of episodes just felt like they weren’t going anywhere.
Starshine: But then you’ve missed out on like 80% of the material of Star Trek. Granted, I’ve only seen the 6 movies, the animated TV show, and three of the novels.
Silverwolf: Well yeah, but I haven’t even touched 90% of the Star Wars material. As I keep saying (and am probably sounding pretty annoying): Expanded Universe.
Starshine: True. But at the same if we’re looking at core material, it’s really original series/original series films, and the Star Wars films, which you haven’t seen so you’re basing your argument on something you haven’t seen. Again, I can’t argue that Star Wars is bad. No one could – they would fail.
Silverwolf: You’ve got me there BUT I think the pure fact I haven’t seen Star Trek is a testament to its draw. Even among the average nerd who loves comics, anime, video games, sci-fi, and fantasy (aka me), you find fewer Trekkies than Star Wars aficionados
Starshine: Or, you know, lack of availability. I didn’t watch Firefly until last semester. that’s not a comment on its appeal, I just never had the time. And I think that is not true; if anything there is a broader, richer, fuller spectrum of Trekkies and Star Wars has more casual fans than anything else. When you are a Trekkie, you’re in it deep.
Silverwolf: True enough, but I think broader appeal is often a testament to the strength of a series
Starshine: I disagree with you, but I feel that’s one aspect we won’t be able to reconcile. Anyways, I think we’re about as far in as we can go.
Silverwolf: True enough.
Starshine: Any last comments?
Silverwolf: Yeah I agree. Well, I’ll just say this: I think both series have their merits, and definitely I need to see more Star Trek material, but in the end I love Star Wars and always will.
Starshine: And while I have a spot in my heart for Star Wars, Star Trek will always be the superior space media for me. And that’s it for this week’s Objection! Come back next week to see two more of our awesome writers duke it out. Til then readers, may the force be with you, and live long and prosper!