The later spinoffs were much better performed, but the content continued to be stuck in Roddenberry’s rut. So why did the Trekkies throw themselves into this poorly imagined, weakly written, badly acted television series with such commitment and dedication? Why did it last so long?
Here’s what I think: Most people weren’t reading all that brilliant science fiction. Most people weren’t reading at all. So when they saw “Star Trek,” primitive as it was, it was their first glimpse of science fiction. It was grade school for those who had let the whole science fiction revolution pass them by. —Orson Scott Card —Strange New World: No ”Star Trek” (LA Times (will expire))
I watched Star Trek religously until I took my first full-time teaching job, during the last season of Deep Space Nine and the third or fourth season of Voyager. A new job, a new baby, and a TV with poor reception. Oh, yeah, and Babylon 5 was still on at the time. My sister would tape the show for us and sends us batches of 5 or 6 at a time, and we would watch them straight through. Very powerful to see it all in that manner.
In total, I’ve watched about 10 minutes of Star Trek: Enterprise, and though I’m still a Star Trek fan, I’m satisfied with the Trek I have and remember.
I am actually very slowly working my way through a 1986 Star Trek novel depicting Kirk’s first mission on the Enterprise. I enjoy the way the novel depicts “down time” on the classic Enterprise, which is something we only rarely saw on the original show.