Sunday, October 17

‘Lower Decks’: Star Trek’s Dirty Work | TV


In 1994 Star Trek: The Next Generation which was already in its seventh and final season (1987-1993), issued a chapter inspired by the British series Up and down in which the focus was placed on the lower decks of the ship Enterprise and its secondary and anonymous workers in contrast to the usual protagonists, the officers, captains and heroes on duty. That idea, that of giving voice to the characters that (almost) never appear in this type of series and movies, is the starting point of the last bet of the immense Star Trek universe: Lower Decks, an animated series for adults that is out of the ordinary in the saga due to its commitment to comedy and some disruptive elements (not many, but just enough to feel that there is something different).

Other recommended series of ‘Fifth Season’

Lower Decks (on Amazon Prime Video) tries to honor everything related to the science fiction series created in 1966 and its subsequent television continuations, especially The new generation, and films – the fourteenth is in preparation – without laughing at them. It is not a parody, but it is a humorous escape with elements not very common in the oldest series of the saga, such as gushing blood, a pinch more violence (not much), swearing, uncomfortable situations (they even dare to play with negative connotations with the famous insignia) or the not so heroic and perfect characters, although all do share that idealism for the Starfleet (that exploration force of an idealistic federation of planets whose ships, like the mythical Enterprise, travel through space contacting new life forms and expanding the galactic horizon). And his bet is also on the development of the characters, with whom it is difficult not to empathize, although the first episodes find it difficult to show it that way.

The title also refers to two types of lower decks. First the ship Cerritos (It takes the name of a town south of Los Angeles, in the US), with the quartet of officers protagonist (to highlight the character of Mariner, daughter of the captain of the ship, and who despite being a potential protagonist of the bridge command of the best ship in the Federation, he prefers not to complicate his life). These officers do the most thankless and unrecognized jobs on a spaceship. And second, the upper deck of this ship is as if it were the lower deck of the mythical ship. Enterprise Kirk and Picard. Cerritos does not go to the planets to make the first contact with the newly discovered civilizations, it goes a posteriori, when the supposedly difficult is already done. You are going to do the maintenance.

Lower Decks, created by Mike McMahan (whose favorite episode is, yes, the one from 1994 quoted at the beginning of this text), it is not the series of Star Trek It will rewrite the history of the franchise, nor a comedy that will last forever, but if you put in a little time (ten 24-minute episodes, it’s more than manageable) it has enough charm to be a great degreaser in the universe. trekkie. And if it is released in its second season, it could attempt to somewhat minimally reach the high level that McMahan achieved in Rick and morty and it looks like it might have Solar Opposites (both with much more bad temper, depth and complexity in their science fiction approach). With this series, Star Trek broadens its spectrum, like what Disney and Lucasfilm dream of doing with Star Wars: opening the brand to other genres, to other sensations, to other audiences. As Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy said in 2015, when it was announced that there would be movies Star Wars to infinity, that each one of them entered a different genre, that Star Wars became a genre in itself. With Star Trek it could be the same.

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