Thursday, January 3, 2008

Star Treking Into New Territory

I've never watched Star Trek before. I have a hard time suspending belief and the make-up kind of weirds me out. Plus, I am a big enough nerd and I don't really need to solidify my place in the bottom rung of the popularity ladder.

But I took a 6-hour nap this evening and woke-up in the middle of the night. The house was dark and the only thing illuminating the family room was the TV and the bumpy face of some sort of creature. But because I was still out of it and couldn't find the remote, I decided I would give Star Trek Voyager the fair shake it deserved. It's a new me in 2008.

In this episode, Repentance, the people I can only assume are the good guys, are transporting prisoners so they can be executed. Only, and you'll never believe this, some of the good guys think that capital punishment is wrong. Then, one of the bad guys reads of statistics about how a certain race of aliens are filling up the jails. The good guy posits that maybe they commit more crimes. The bad guy says something about the system not being fair.

This is essentially an issue episode about the criminal justice system, racial profiling and capital punishment. It's a lot to get into one episode and frankly, I don't think they pulled it off. The worst part? People are probably watching this show, or even obsessing over this show, and not getting the metaphor. I applaud them for trying, but if you're not going to do any of the issues justice, just keep your mouth shut. Stick to waxing enthusiastic about intergalactic fighting and skin bump maintenance.

Oh, and did I mention that the prisoners were multi-colored and deformed while the non-prisoners had finely ironed uniforms and the whitest skin I'd seen since Powder? I'm calling Al Sharpton.