Star Trek and Fan Fiction.
Star Trek fans have always been more dedicated than most, organizing large-scale letter-writing campaigns to save their favorite show, perfecting elaborate costumes so they can impersonate individual characters, and even mastering entirely fictional languages. But for some fans, simply enjoying Star Trek as audience members is not enough—they want to be co-creators of the stories that keep their beloved franchise alive.
In this episode of Primitive Culture, hosts Clara Cook and Tony Black consider the phenomenon of fan fiction, from its origins with the 'Slash' movement of the 1970s through to the present day, when the internet has made thousands of fan-written works, some of them novel-length or more, available to fellow enthusiasts around the world. Along the way, they consider the thorny question of what counts as canon, tropes such as the much-derided 'Mary Sue', and talk in depth about Tony's own fan fiction script series, Star Trek: Premonition.
A history of Star Trek fanfic (00:07:00)
Fanfic websites (00:18:15)
Star Trek: Premonition (00:28:40)
Licensed works (00:45:00)
Mary Sues (01:00:05)
Final thoughts (01:10:00)
Clara Cook and Tony Black
Tony Black (Editor) C Bryan Jones (Executive Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Ken Tripp (Executive Producer) Norman C. Lao (Associate Producer) Amy Nelson (Associate Producer) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) Brandon-Shea Mutala (Patreon Manager)
The Human Frontier in Guernsey. Duncan is interviewed live at the Guille-Allès Library to discuss his book Star Trek: The Human Frontier.
Cyrano de Bergerac on Deep Space Nine. We compare “Looking for par’Mach in All the Wrong Places” with Edmond Rostand’s Cyrano De Bergerac and Steve Martin’s Roxanne.
Gothic Fiction in Star Trek: Voyager. We look at the influences on Captain Janeway’s gothic holonovel, from Jane Eyre to The Turn of the Screw and Rebecca.
Star Trek’s Dark Ages. What does it take to get from today to a utopian future? We take a look at Star Trek’s imagined history and ask if we’ll ever make it to first contact with the Vulcans.
Short Treks and bite-sized content. We look at Short Treks in comparison to the traditional Star Trek format and ask what embracing brevity might mean for the franchise going forward.
From Altair IV to Talos IV. We look at the links between sci-fi classic Forbidden Planet and Star Trek’s original unaired pilot, “The Cage.”
Odysseus, Craft, and Calypso. We look at the connection between Michael Chabon’s acclaimed Star Trek: Short Treks episode and Homer’s Odyssey, and how an ancient culture continues to resonate centuries after its death.
In-Jokes and Easter Eggs in Star Trek. In honor of our 47th episode, we look at some of the franchises recurring comedy motifs, now-famous patterns, and internal references.
The Attica Prison Uprising and DS9’s “Past Tense.” We look at the influence the 1971 prison uprising had on this unusually bleak installment of Star Trek.
Star Trek and Repertory Theatre. We discuss the parallels between Star Trek’s varied storytelling and traditional weekly rep in this special roundtable, recorded during the Destination Star Trek convention in Birmingham, UK.