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[personal profile] corilannam
WHERE MY NERDS AT??? I saw this movie last night and I need to talk some hardcore Trek here.

I liked this movie. I didn't love it with the pure, soul-deep love of the 2009 Star Trek. I have a feeling I would have loved it much more if I was less of a Trek nerd. I have a feeling I'm going to love it much more after repeat viewings.

I have a lot to squee about and a lot I wasn't crazy about, which ultimately means a lot more to say than I have time to type right now. So I'll just hit some highlights and then see what you all have to say.

I absolutely loved the beginning with that stunningly gorgeous planet and the volcano and Spock being a badass scientist and Uhura very calmly freaking the fuck out and Kirk totally handwaving the Prime Directive in order to save Spock's life. In return, I am willing to handwave the question of how they got the ship down there to begin with.

I also loved that they took the Enterprise away from Kirk for it. Unlike the Kirk we knew in TOS, this Kirk does not have the solid overachiever work history of his counterpart. He has very few laurels to rest on at this point--pretty much he has a few moments of crazy world-saving brilliance (limited shelf life), a good Academy record (I assume), and he has Christopher Pike. He can't afford to be so cavalier; that's a privilege that he still has to earn.

But we still have that pure Kirk brilliance. I love that he was the one who figured out Harrison (as we knew him at that point) had planned the whole thing to get to the Starfleet brass in that conference room and I love that he was the one who brought Harrison's ship down. (But teleporting from Earth to the Klingon homeworld? Seriously? And being able to warp to Kronos in mere minutes? The fuck? And at the end, if they were that close to Earth, how did--oh, never mind.)

I'm kind of devastated that they killed Pike. I mean, yes, it makes sense, mentor figure has to die, yadda yadda, but I loved this incarnation of Pike so much, both for his own personality and his relationship with Kirk. Having Spock confirm that he died in fear and pain and confusion just made it worse. Kirk openly weeping over his body with Spock helpless in the face of Kirk's grief almost broke me. And of course, I loved the way Kirk steadied himself on Spock's shoulder for a moment when he stood.

So yeah, let's just go ahead and talk about the slash. Actually, more than that, because for me, this was the pure OT3 (by which I mean Kirk/Spock/Uhura -- I'm afraid the classic triumvirate of Kirk/Spock/McCoy didn't work as well for me this time as it did last time) that I've been wanting since the last movie. I love that there's clearly that strong bond of trust and affection building between Kirk and Uhura now, right where it should be, and that made it even better as they both tried to sort out their relationship with their pointy-eared robot boyfriend. I mean, come on, they were sitting in a literal triangle! I giggled out loud at one point at Kirk's desperation not to be involved in that conversation and Uhura being like, "oh, no, you're in this with me, buddy, man up." Perfect.

And the development of the Kirk/Spock? Watching Spock learn what to do with these weird feelings? Watching them fumble their way into their relationship? Love it. I had some issues with the death scene, but Spock waiting at Kirk's bedside when he woke up? Calling him Jim for the first time? You could hear my squee from space, I swear to God. I had to bite down on my sweater to keep from disturbing people.

I mentioned having some issues with the death scene, but it's not the scene itself, which really was glorious and I'm sure I'll enjoy it much more after a couple more viewings. My problem is that I was 12 when I become a Trekkie and a Kirk/Spock baby slasher and I imprinted hard on The Wrath of Khan. Really hard. And although I appreciate all the stuff they crammed in there from Wrath, very little of it felt organic to me. Kirk's death had very little impact on me, partially because I was very distracted by comparisons to Wrath and partially because it was blindingly obvious that they were going to use the superblood to revive him.

(And about that--oh, never mind, I'm not going to bitch about that. I'm glad they kept Khan around in the end. Though I'm sorry, TRIBBLES CASUALLY ON THE ENTERPRISE WTF?)

I think part of my problem with recreating so much of Wrath is that Wrath occurred in a very, very different point in the timeline for the original characters. Kirk had a long and legendary career, a son, a relationship deep beyond words with Spock, glories and deep regrets. When Spock died in Wrath, the sacrifice was devastating because of everything that was between them, because Spock was making a very conscious and considered choice, and also because Spock stayed dead through the end of the movie. When Kirk died in Darkness, it was the loss of potential (both his life and the relationship), which held less gravitas and was further lessened by the rather easy deus ex machine already set up.

(Also, the whole point of Spock going into the reactor core in Wrath was that as a Vulcan, he could withstand the radiation long enough to get it done, as no human could. I guess radiation isn't as intense in the alternate timeline?)

When Spock did the "Khaaaaaaaaaaaan!" scream, I had to cover my face with embarrassment.

I really loved Khan himself. I already knew who he was going in (I stumbled upon that clip of him giving the Dreadnought coordinates to Kirk, and as soon as he said "72 reasons," that was it)(though it didn't stop me from squealing "holy shit!" out loud earlier when Khan asked Spock how many torpedoes there were on board)(not enough nerds in my theater, dammit).

Ever since Benedict Cumberbatch was cast, I've been hoping he was Khan, because I thought he's one of the few people who could really pull off a chilling, believable Khan. And he really, really did. I was mesmerized every second he was on screen. I loved his mind games with Kirk, I loved his cold vengeance, and I loved the ambiguity of his devotion to his people weighted against his ruthless killing.

So overall, A+ for the use of Khan, but I wish they had gone more Space Seed with it instead of trying to recreate Wrath of Khan so exactly. I really want them to bring him back and explore more of his cold genocidal side.

Other random thoughts:

* Not sure how I feel about Carol Marcus. She was kind of pointless, except as another callback to Wrath
* Wish Sulu had more to do. Thrilled that Uhura did have more to do. I guess they have to take turns?
* I just love Simon Pegg as Scotty. He's different, but I can't help but love seeing him in action.
* Loved seeing Cupcake again!
* Loved all the visually interesting people on the bridge

Argh, I have so much more I want to talk about! But I have to get some work done -- come talk to me in the meantime!
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Cori Lannam

October 2017


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