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Unboxing The 22nd Century Klingon Bird Of Prey

Right, onto one of my fav alien, one of my fav Klingon ships. The 22nd Century Bird of Prey – the predecessor to the later 24th century Bird of Prey which is more famous.

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During the mid-22nd century, the Klingon Empire operated a type of small warship known as the Klingon Bird-of-Prey. his class is one of the earliest class of starships encountered by Earth Starfleet during the early 2150s. The first encounter occurred on the outer perimeter of the Sol system in early 2153. Starfleet, however, had known of the existence of these ships as early as late 2151. This Bird-of-Prey design was revamped over the next two centuries, and was used to represent several different variations of this class that were collectively known under the same name.

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Comparable in design to its sister classes, the Raptor-class scout and D5-class battle cruiser, the exterior design of the Bird-of-Prey utilized the same basic avian design, including vaguely feather-like hull plating on its wings. The bulk of the ship’s overall mass was incorporated in the aft section of the ship. The bridge module was located on a bulbous forward section, which was separated from the aft section by a relatively thin ‘neck’ that attached to and flared into the aft portion which swept down below the main body, forming wings. Located on the caudal section of the ship were the ship’s shuttlebay, impulse engines and two warp nacelles. The port and starboard nacelles were directly connected to the extreme upper aft section of the ship, perpendicular to the impulse engine.

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The offensive arsenal of the Bird-of-Prey was rather impressive, for the time, as the ship possessed at least eight forward disruptor banks, including a twin pair of neck-mounted disruptor cannons, a pair of wing-tip mounted disruptor cannons, and a 360º rotating turret containing twin belly-mounted disruptor cannons. The class was also equipped with dual photon torpedo launchers, positioned fore and aft, and defensive shields. This class, however, had minimal aft weapons. Prior to the refitting of Enterprise, one Bird-of-Prey was more than a match with the NX-class; however, it was unable to repel three older Earth vessels at one time. After Enterprise was upgraded, it was nearly an even match with the Bird-of-Prey. This class of Bird-of-Prey could outgun an Orion Interceptor, two to one.

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This class of vessel was equipped with tractor beam technology. It had one emitter located on the underside of each wing that, when used in conjunction, could be used to manipulate a ship to its belly docking port. Unlike the Raptor class, this class of Bird-of-Prey was equipped with escape pods. The Bird-of-Prey’s escape pod hatch was also located on the belly of the ship. One major flaw of the Bird-of-Prey’s design was found at the nape of the ship’s neck and primary hull; a direct hit on the main plasma junction, located above the sensor array, could disable the entire power grid.

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Like the Raptor-class scouts of this era, live food was kept aboard these Birds-of-Prey in the targ pits, presumably adjacent to the galley. Located in the “head” of the forward section of the vessel, the bridge, which was plated with dispersive armor, was one of the most protected sections of the ship. The configuration of the Bird-of-Prey’s main bridge shared with many features found in contemporary designs. In the front of the bridge, against the forward bulkhead, was the ship’s viewscreen. Directly behind the viewscreen, near the center of the bridge was the captain’s chair. Directly behind the captain’s chair, was the entryway to the bridge, with two manned consoles located on either side of the doorway. Along the perimeter of the bridge were several stations, each designated for a specific task.

I hope you like the pics I did of the model. It is smaller than I would have liked it to be but it is done very well. And ofcourse below us we have a video unboxing of the ship. Enjoy!

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Arsenal’s Pathetic State Of Affairs

Valencia appear to be playing hardball with Arsenal, as – according to the Daily Mirror – they will only sell defender Shkodran Mustafi to Arsenal for €50m (£43.23m). As a consequence of the high fee, Arsene Wenger was prepared to walk away from the deal because of the price, but the transfer could be rescued sue to the fact that Valencia need the cash. The Spanish club have aspirations of their own, and are trying to raise as much money as possible in order to fund a deal for Chelsea’s Spanish winger, Pedro. The Mirror claim that Arsenal’s transfer ‘fixer’ Dick Law has gone to Spain to try to get the Mustafi deal over the line.

An ‘Arsenal club shop worker’ has resigned from his role at the club claiming that he does not want to be a burden on Arsenal’s spending on transfers. Following Arsenal’s draw with Leicester on Saturday, Wenger said that a reason for not spening as much as his rivals is because the club need to ensure that the club’s 600 staff members are paid first. In response, this ’employee’, only known as ‘Arsenal Employee’ has handed in his notice in the hope that the removal of his wage from the wage bill will not further hamper transfer activities.

The letter said:

“My decision for leaving is due to Mr. Arsene Wenger’s comments about staff after he recent draw against Leiecester City. To blame having to pay the 600 people working at Arsenal Football Club for not buying a player is a disgrace.

“I earn £7.20ph, and work 37.5 hours a week. I get paid £270 a week. Over 52 weeks that is £14,040 a year. Theo Walcott earns 10x’s that a week.

“Hopefully with my wage off the club’s wage bill, it will free up the cash for Mr. Wenger to buy more players.

“I no longer wish to be a burden at this club.”

 

Wenger should hang his head in shame. The moron is beyond redemption now. Idiotic comments, impotent attempts to buy players. Why don’t you just go and fuck off? You can’t manage a club anymore!! What a waste of a season! I can’t wait for it to be over and to hear that Wenger is gone! He is the worst. When did Per get injured? And when Gabriel went off too? Any other club would have signed the players we need by now. What a pathetic state of affairs. But let’s admit it to ourselves folks, did we expect Moron Wenger to change? He is way too arrogant and set in his ways and he has too much control as the board have their collective heads so far up his backside to check what’s good for the club and what the fans want.

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Farewell & Thank You Gord

From Gordon Downie’s final concert here is New Orleans Is Sinking live in Kingston, Ontario. A fond farewell to a poet and singer extraordinaire. Gord is dying of terminal cancer and does not have much longer to live. I was lucky to get a good stream this morning and catch the ending of the concert.

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Leicester City 0 Arsenal 0

Premier League champions Leicester City and last season’s runners-up Arsenal are still waiting for their first win of the new campaign after a goalless stalemate at the King Power Stadium. Both teams were aiming to bounce back from opening-weekend losses, to Hull City and Liverpool respectively, but could not find a breakthrough in a fiercely-contested game. Referee Mark Clattenburg was the villain for Leicester fans after denying strong penalty claims in each half, first when Laurent Koscielny tangled with Danny Drinkwater then late on when Hector Bellerin appeared to upend Ahmed Musa. Leicester striker Jamie Vardy failed to punish the club he turned down this summer when he shot wide from close range as Claudio Ranieri’s side started to exert a measure of control after the break.

Arsenal keeper Petr Cech saved crucially from Riyad Mahrez in the dying seconds while Arsenal had opportunities of their own as they enjoyed the better of the first half, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain shooting narrowly wide. Arsenal fans were not celebrating a hard-earned point at the final whistle – they were busy venting their fury at manager Arsenal Wenger’s lack of activity in the transfer market. Wenger was urged, loudly and in very industrial terms, to start spending some money as Arsenal fought through a spell of late Leicester pressure. It left Arsenal without a win from their first two games and means they are already five points behind Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea – and indeed Hull City. And there can be no doubt Arsenal’s fans have a valid point when they question why Wenger has not beefed up his squad more, certainly with more than the £35m acquisition of midfielder Granit Xhaka from Borussia Monchengladbach.

Wenger is hoping to complete a £25m deal for Valencia’s German central defender Shkodran Mustafi but there is also a need for further class in attack to augment, and perhaps replace, Olivier Giroud. This is a defining season for Wenger so it could be said he faces a defining few days in the transfer market. Arsenal’s fans certainly know it. Wenger must surely know it too as he listened to those angry voices in the travelling support tucked away in a corner of the King Power Stadium. Koscielny’s return brought authority to Arsenal’s defence and also helped guide Holding through a spell of heavy Leicester pressure, particularly distinguishing himself with a lunge that forced Vardy to shoot high and wide. He is a fixture in Arsenal’s central defence – now Wenger must provide him with quality support.

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Devoid Of Colour

Imagine we lived in a world that’s all of a sudden devoid of color, but where you’re given the option to have just one object keep its original hue. Which object (and which color) would that be?

Hmmm that is a difficult one to give an answer to. We take colours for things to be so much for granted. To not be able to see green grass and leaves, the blue skies, the green or blue oceans and seas, the colours of people’s skin, clothes and other stuff. How do we ever give up colour?

I guess if we lost colour for everything else and I could only pic one it would be the skies or the ocean or sunsets / sunrise. Those are magical colours and I wouldn’t ever want to lose them. That would be really tragic. To not see a magical orange sunset is a shame. Sunsets, yes I’d pick sunsets.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

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In Transit

Train stations, airport terminals, subway stops: soulless spaces full of distracted, stressed zombies, or magical sets for fleeting, interlocking human stories?

If I had to choose between waiting for a few hours in either of an airport/railway station/bus station in India I would pick an airport. No contest. I hate waiting in railways stations or bus stands, they are the pits. Airports tend to have better seating and better food and are much more cleaner and sanitary. I would say that the Kochi airport is fine, has some good seats (mostly couches), plenty of drinks and food is good too. Ofcourse the food stalls at the airport have a sense of humour when it comes to food prices though – a small chicken cutlet is Rs.30-40??? Motherfucker!!

I really liked the Delhi & Chennai airports. Lots of good food stalls and good seating. Mobile, laptop and tab charging options and plenty of shopping. A little too rich for my taste but still there are options. I can easily sit back and read for a few hours or use my laptop and connect to the wifi and enjoy a little Facebook or Twitter or work on my blog. That’s what a station should be. Not the crappy, smelly and pathetic bus stations and train stations I am used to. I remember once entering a railway station’s toilet in Kerala and almost puking due to the intense smell of stale urine and shit. A big blast of that stench just assaulted my nose! Puke avoided by moving out as soon as I could – peed in record time!

A couple of bus stands are also terrible. Terrible smells, bad bathrooms and bad seating. Cheap food at the stalls though which is the only saving grace. Sheesh! Another reason why I hate traveling in India.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

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32 Hours Later

I am just so tired right now. I have done a big day and I feel like I could sleep for 3 days at a stretch now. I went to work at 12:30 am last night, or reached the office at 12:30 am and left the office at 6pm and just reached home at 7pm. That is a long time. I was also awake from 11:30 am on Thursday as well. 32 hours awake as I post this.

The reason I did that was since my colleague, who is now handling the training batch of 26 new hires which I had started taking for the first few days, had to take a leave today due to the death of her aunt. So instead of doing my Thursday shift of 6:30 pm I came in much later at 12:30 am and stayed with them till 10:30 am when they left the office. I could have gone at that time but I chose to do a double shift or atleast 16 hours at the office and do some other work.

I did this cause I could then come back after 6pm today and not have to go back till Monday. This means that even if I am so tired now not having slept for a long time I get my Friday evening free and I can sleep early and get my Saturday free to do as I please. That is worth it.

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A Bookish Choice

A literary-minded witch gives you a choice: with a flick of the wand, you can become either an obscure novelist whose work will be admired and studied by a select few for decades, or a popular paperback author whose books give pleasure to millions. Which do you choose?

Hmm, I would chose to be a popular paperback author who gives a lot of pleasure to millions of his readers. Better to be admired by millions than a select few right? Well not always. But I would want to fame, adulation and the money that comes with selling millions of books.

I have a lot of stories that I think would be great to read and get to know. Stories set out in space, on alien planets, in different galaxies, on starships, on strange alien vessels and in the future and the past. I would love to tell you what this world I have created looks like and what wonderful things there are to be seen and felt and wonderful places to see and experience.

I would love to be interviewed, do book signings, do readings, have my books analyzed and even made into tv shows or movies. And be the executive producer for a bunch of those movies. And get to wine and dine with the stars and even bed a few gorgeous actresses.

Is that too much to ask?

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

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Bedtime

Bedtime

Bedtime varies a lot these days. I work 6:30 pm to 3:30 am shifts so usually on a work day I go to bed at around 4:15 to 4:30 am. And I wake up at 11 or so. Like this morning I woke up at 11:20 am. But somedays I work the day shift which means I have to go to bed by around midnight otherwise I will never wake up by 6:30 am.

I think I prefer the 4:30 pm to 1:30 am shift because though I hate getting ready to go to work just after lunch time (which I’d usually eat around 2pm and get going to work by 3) getting home by around 2:15 am is much better. I also usually am not tired and too sleepy at that time so I might even watch some tv before hitting the bedsheets.

Waking up at this time means a dry mouth, tiredness, no appetite or time for a breakfast so I usually just get a coffee and wait till lunch time. I will usually have another big cup of coffee before I head out to work by 5:30 pm.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

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Arsenal 3 Liverpool 4

Liverpool held on to beat Arsenal in a stunning Premier League opening-weekend encounter at Emirates Stadium. Theo Walcott fired in the first goal for the Gunners in the 31st minute, moments after missing a penalty. Philippe Coutinho equalised with a brilliant free-kick before Adam Lallana fired in after the break. Coutinho poked in his second and Sadio Mane slammed home, before Arsenal’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain scored a great solo goal and Calum Chambers headed in. It was billed as the best game of the Premier League opening weekend and more than lived up to expectations.

After quite a dour 30 minutes, Alberto Moreno’s second defensive mistake lit the flame for the encounter that followed. It was the second half that will long live in the memory. Four of the five goals were exceptional. There was Lallana’s chest control and strike followed by a 19-pass move finished off by Coutinho. Mane then capped off an impressive debut with a goal reminiscent of his strikes at Southampton – driving at the defence before a fierce finish. And substitute Oxlade-Chamberlain then produced a delightful cameo when he dazzled the Liverpool backline and then slotted past Simon Mignolet. Chambers’ header left Liverpool wondering whether a great win would become ‘what could have been’ – but they hung on.

Gunners deserved some plaudits for the character they displayed. At 4-1 down, things looked pretty bleak and the fans were on their backs, but they responded pretty well. They did not pull it back to 4-4 but they made the scoreline respectable, rather than it being an embarrassment. Watching Arsene Wenger in these last few seasons has been like watching an old man who thinks he can still do all the newfangled dance moves. Our lack of preparation is why we lost. Lack of transfer activity. Poor tactics. It’s ground hogs day, again. No one can or should defend Wenger now. Had weeks to bring in a defender and an attacker. He is incompetent. Wenger doesn’t attack the market he sits and waits for cast offs from the elites.

Is the board daft? Is Wenger senile? Do they even care? We saw fans throwing programmes onto the pitch, fans walking out, fans singing “spend some fucking money” wheres your “One Arsene Wenger” chant now. He deserves every bit of abuse he is getting now, at the ground, at the games on the internet. And that board who just kisses his balls and play along. You can’t compete in this era, get the fuck out!

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Bridge Of Spies

The combination of Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg delivered an awesomely wonderful and delightful film in Bridge Of Spies. A 2015 historical drama legal thriller film directed and co-produced by Spielberg, is co-produced by Marc E. Platt and Kristie Macosko Krieger, and written by Matt Charman, Ethan and Joel Coen. The film stars Tom Hanks, Mark Rylance, Amy Ryan, and Alan Alda.

Rudolf Abel, a Scottish born Russian spy is arrested by FBI agents in Brooklyn. With a lot of evidence against him, Abel is told that if he cooperates his sentence will be lowered but he doesn’t offer up anything. When the question about representation for the spy comes up, it’s apparent that no one wants to the scapegoat. James B. Donovan is an insurance lawyer with substantial negotiation experience and worked on prosecutions of German war crimes in the Nuremberg trials. The bar association asks him to defend Abel, in order to ensure that justice is seen to be done. Donovan, although knows his client is guilty, does his work earnestly identifying procedural flaws in the government’s case which are ignored by the judge. He comes under a lot of pressure from the public, friends and family as the conclusion is foregone. Abel is judged guilty as charged.

Donovan meets the judge privately before sentencing and argues that Abel not be sentenced to death, as he could serve as “insurance” if a U.S. spy is captured. Abel is sentenced to 30 years in prison, which causes outrage by the public and sees hate mail pouring towards the direction of Donovan and his family and even threats in the form of a gun shot fired at his home. Nevertheless, he appeals to the U.S. Supreme Court, which is denied, arguing evidence presented was tainted by lack of a valid search warrant. As the case is concluding, the American military & airforce plans an aerial spy run above Soviet skies to take photos of key areas. Pilot Gary Powers goes on a Lockheed U-2 sortie over the Soviet Union and is shot down, captured, unable to kill himself before that happens and convicted and subjected to interrogation. The USSR sends a backchannel message to Donovan, hinting at exchanging of Abel for Powers. Director of Central Intelligence Allen Welsh Dulles asks Donovan to handle negotiations, formally merely as a private citizen, negotiating with ‘Mr. Vogel’ in East Germany. Donovan travels to West Berlin accompanied by CIA agents.

As this is happening, a young American student in Germany named Frederic Pryor, visits his German girlfriend in East Berlin just as the Berlin Wall is being built. He tries to bring her into West Berlin, but is stopped by border guards and arrested as an American spy. Donovan goes to the Soviet Embassy in East Berlin, and meets Ivan Schischkin. Schischkin asks for Abel to be released first, and Powers released several months after, but Donovan insists on simultaneous release. Donovan also wants Pryor released, but Schischkin informs him that Pryor is held by East Germany. Donovan, who understands that the Russian and East German interests do not match, each wants to make a one-for-one deal for Abel. Donovan meets Wolfgang Vogel, a GDR lawyer, and negotiates a separate deal to exchange Abel for Pryor. Schischkin informs Donovan that the USSR agrees with the proposed trade, and plans the exchange to occur on the Glienicke Bridge. However, Vogel pulls out after discovering the deal Donovan made with the USSR. Donovan is contacted by Vogel’s superior, Harald Ott, East German attorney general, and goes to his office insisting on the 2-for-1 deal. Ott bluntly refuses.

Donovan sends a message to Ott, stating that the U.S. requires both Pryor and Powers for Abel, or the entire deal will be void. That evening, the GDR calls and accepts, with the requirement that Pryor is to be released at Checkpoint Charlie instead, simultaneously. At the bridge Donovan meets Abel and on the other side Powers is brought forth. Both Americans and Russians urge a quick completion, but Donovan insists on waiting for Pryor’s release. Out of gratitude, Abel waits. Eventually, Pryor is released at Checkpoint Charlie, and Abel is promptly exchanged for Powers. An exhausted Donovan returns home as the news of his involvement in the release of Powers is reported on TV, watched by his family. As the movie ends, Donovan heads for work in a train and gets a smile from a lady who recognizes him when early he got frowns and he just nods with a small smile.

Wonderful movie, great acting and it’s fun as well. Whenever Abel asks “Will it help?” I cracked up. Just a wonderfully uplifting movie to watch. A 9 outta 10!

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2116

What will it be like in the future? Let’s say a 100 years from now. What will things look like? I dunno but I would like to take a guess.

Well for one, none of us will be alive to make sure that this is even remotely like how it is, but for one I think science will advance things quite a bit more. Humans will all have 3D televisions at home and they will cost a fraction of what the current tvs cost. And by 3D I mean it will pop out and you can get a view of what you are watching from all sides.

Travel will become cheaper and people will travel a lot more and a lot faster than we currently do now. But your luggage will still get lost about the same number of times it does now. A few languages will die out. There will be more atheists or non-believers (whatever you want to call us) than we currently have now. But religion will still be around and strong but not as strong as it used to be.

There will be people reeling from a huge war, maybe even a huge one on a global scale. Societies will be rebuilt and the population will be down in certain areas. Can we look for colonization of another planet/moon something? Wouldn’t it be cool to be able to walk on an alien planet? Look up at the sky and see different views than what we see on earth?

I dunno, I hope some of these things come true.

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RIP Kenny Baker

The British actor who played R2-D2 in the Star Wars films has died at the age of 81 after a long illness. Kenny Baker, who was 3ft 8in tall, shot to fame in 1977 when he first played the robot character. He went on to play the character in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, as well as the three Star Wars prequels from 1999 to 2005. He also appeared in a number of other much loved films in the 1980s, including The Elephant Man, Time Bandits and Flash Gordon. When he was a child, he was told that he probably wouldn’t survive through puberty, being a little person in those times, they didn’t have a very good life expectancy.

Baker met his wife Eileen after an appearance on the Michael Parkinson TV chat show. She wrote in and said she was a little person too and wanted to meet him. Standing 3 feet 8 inches tall, Baker created Artoo’s much-loved innocent yet adventurous personality from inside the droid, starting with 1977’s A New Hope. Whether it was the slow turn of Artoo’s dome to convey suspicion or nervous wobbles signifying fear, Baker made a robotic being seem very human. In addition, he played Paploo, the Ewok who memorably steals a speeder bike in 1983’s Return of the Jedi. The actor became a legend to Star Wars fans.

Born in Birmingham, England, Baker began acting at age 16. Along with the Star Wars films, his career also includes performances in Lucasfilm’s Willow (1988 ), and more. In 1978, he immortalized Artoo at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, making cement footprints of the droid that remain outside the famed theater today.

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Food Review #108

The limited edition Indi-McSpicy chicken was meant to give consumers a kick of Indian Spices with the unique pungent flavor Green Chillisauce, which is made from the locally sourced green chillies. The delicious burgers are filled with rich paneer/ chicken patty marinated with crunchy lettuce, red jalapenos, chilli, onions and cheesesandwiched between spiced Masala buns topped with black & white sesame seeds.

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Star Trek’s New Show – Star Trek : Discovery

I’m disappointed that a good film, a good Star Trek film (about as good a Star Trek film you can get in the Kelvinverse), like Star Trek Beyond isn’t doing as well in the box office but I am still excited that we are getting a new Star Trek tv show. Now, it is only going to be shown on CBS all access and on Netflix so I will have to wait and see as to when I can get to see the show. But I am still excited. And….it will be set in the prime timeline though not post Nemesis as most of us had hoped!

Along with the new show we get new characters, new aliens, new villains, new settings and a new hero ship. The show’s title is based on the name of the new hero ship, the USS Discovery. Star Trek: Discovery is scheduled to be released in 2017. It is the sixth live-action series set in the Star Trek universe and the seventh in total. It will be produced by CBS Television Studios and Secret Hideout; the executive producers are Bryan Fuller, Alex Kurtzman, and Heather Kadin.

According to the press release, “The brand-new Star Trek will introduce new characters seeking imaginative new worlds and new civilizations, while exploring the dramatic contemporary themes that have been a signature of the franchise since its inception in 1966.” It was recently Star Trek: Discovery will be set 10 years prior to the events of TOS, filling in some of the gap between Enterprise and classic TOS. In addition, Fuller clarified points about the leadership on the show, explaining that there would be a shift in perspective from the traditional captain-oriented format to one that follows the show’s lieutenant commander – the female lead currently being cast.

As details finally emerge about Star Trek‘s long-awaited return to the small-screen, the announcements may come as a mixed bag for some fans. The new series will provide a fresh angle on one of the classic periods in Federation history. Placing a woman in (sort of) command will also provide a well-balanced look at the otherwise male-dominated era explored during TOS. And while Fuller did discount any major tie-in to the Romulan War, it’s still possible the Klingon-Federation conflict, which took place during that era, could play a major role in the series. It’s also exciting to hear that alien species, which have become a hallmark of the Star Trek, will have more bridge time on the Discovery. Another interesting wrinkle is the addition of more graphic content. While Star Trek has classically been a family-friendly program, even the classic series tackled some very adult issues. Hopefully, the new Trek will use its edgier venue to delve deeper into complex issues, rather than using gratuitous sexual situations and course language to drum up All Access customers.

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