Watch EPIX Star Trek Marathon All Day Saturday

Watch this weekend’s Star Trek marathon on EPIX, where androids have always had unlimited Data!

Brent Spiner appears as Lt. Commander Data in Star Trek: Generations (Carson, 1994).

Brent Spiner appears as Lt. Commander Data in Star Trek: Generations (Carson, 1994).

Since you’ll be enjoying these Data benefits, go online to our EPIX website to answer a crucial question that all Trekkies must ask themselves at some point in time: are the even-numbered Star Trek movies superior to the odd-numbered ones?

Let’s employ a popular, empirical method to examine the evidence. For our case studies, we’ll use the first two films in the series, Star Trek: The Motion Picture and Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.

Case Study # 1: 

Star Trek the Motion Picture (aka, Star Trek I) v. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

 

Exhibit A.

Star Trek the Motion Picture (aka, Star Trek I)

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The original, ensemble cast joins with newcomers for Star Trek: The Motion Picture (Wise, 1979). 

 

Pro’s:

1. It’s the OG of Star Trek films.

The Motion Picture brought Star Trek back to life after 11 years off the air, with most of the original cast on board and series creator Gene Roddenberry producing.

2. Everyone’s still thin (even Scotty!).

3. It reinvented Klingons.

Before the film franchise, Klingons were depicted with much subtler make-up that barely differentiated them from their human counterparts.  With the upgrade in production design that Star Trek experienced in transitioning to the big screen, Klingons got a true head-to-toe makeover — and simultaneously took on the role of major antagonist for the series, as a whole.

 

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Production designer Harold Michelson gave Klingons a make-over for the big screen.

Con’s:

1. Stephen Collins stars as Decker.

Can we ever look at him the same way again? Either way, you’ll enjoy watching him get schooled in this franchise-opener.

2. The introduction to the film takes 33 minutes.

Reader challenge: Can anyone identity the timestamp for the last opening credit title? Sound off in the comments… we’d really like to know!

3. Spock’s Hair

Once the band finally does get together and the plot eventually takes off, Spock continues rocking this ‘do.

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Spock (Leonard Nimoy) suffers a bad hairdo.

 

Exhibit B.

Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

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William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy star in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (Meyer, 1982).

 

Pro’s:

1. Spock’s Hair is better.

Business in the front, party in the back doesn’t suit Spock.  Perhaps getting his hair cut helped Spock harness his mojo to make the ultimate sacrifice at the end of Star Trek II.

2. Ricardo Montalban as Khan blows the spot up.

Let’s start with the obvious: Ricardo Montalban as Khan is superhumanly bronze and sexy. Plus, the physicality of his acting plays extremely well off of William Shatner’s enthusiastic portrayal of Khan’s nemesis, Kirk, in this second installment of the series.

3. Introducing… Kirstie Alley!

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Kirstie Alley takes on her first film role as Saavik.

Con’s:

1. Introducing… Kirstie Alley!

2. Sorry, ladies, Benedict Cumberbatch isn’t in this one.

3. Nightmare worms will haunt your dreams forevermore. 

You can never un-see what happens right after this pivotal moment in the Botany Bay.

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Ricardo Montalban brings the heat as Khan.

Our Verdict:

This match-up may be the easiest to call.  Star Trek: The Motion Picture is probably the most under-developed movie in the franchise, while the greatness of Star Trek II: Wrath of Khan pretty much eclipses any other entries in the series, except perhaps Voyage Home (any takers? — This one is a love-it or hate-it film, but it’s quality is key to keeping the even streak going).

Check out the rest of the movies, debate your own case studies, and bury the Bat’leth with your fellow Trekkies!

Related Titles:

Star Trek III: The Search for Spock

Star Trek V: The Final Frontier

Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country

Star Trek Into Darkness

Trekkies

A Conversation with Leonard Nimoy