As I write this, we've just recently celebrated the 49th anniversary of the original Star Trek series premiere in 1966. I think we've established over the previous installments of this recurring blog feature that I'm a lifelong fan, having grown up watching reruns of the original show while playing with the action figures and other toys or building the models, or reading the various books and comics. Now here we are, all these years later, and I'm still collecting the odd piece of Trek merchandise.
With that in mind and with the holiday shopping season bearing down on us, I figured now was a good time to assemble something of an "Ultimate Wish List" of Trek-related items I wouldn't mind Santa or some other benevolent trans-dimensional entity dropping on me. While a couple of these are doable if still a bit "pie in the sky," others definitely fall into the realm of, "Keep dreaming, Ward," but let a fanboy have his fantasies, okay? Meanwhile, for those of you hoping to find me that perfect gift, I offer up just a few of the things I covet as part of my unrelenting lust for all things old-school Trek:
Sega Star Trek arcade game - I was a teenager in the 1980s, and if I recovered half of the quarters I stuck into video games during that time, I could probably buy a decent-sized house. A lot of those quarters went into the Star Trek: Strategic Operations Simulator game. I already have a standup cabinet version of this all-time favorite, but the Holy Grail is the sit-down version, which does a commendable job of immersing you in the experience of chasing after Klingon warships and various Nomad clones. Don't worry where I might put it; my kids can share a bedroom.
Full-size Captain's chair replica - Let's face it: something like this would be the centerpiece of any decent Trekkie's rec room or man cave. What a great way to watch the game or--of course--a favorite Star Trek episode. Heck, if I thought it'd fit, I'd give serious consideration to installing this thing in my master bathroom. I could wire up the buttons to dispense hand sanitizer and air freshener at the same time I'm signaling red alert. Everybody wins! I was going to add another joke here about jettisoning the ion pod, but that seemed to be taking things a bit too far. Wait....
Original Series phaser rifle prop replica - I know that Anovos produces first-rate recreations of uniforms and other accessories from Star Trek and Star Wars just to name two examples, and they are (as I write this) developing replica hand phasers and phaser rifles from Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, and Voyager, but where's the daddy of them all? I already have an outstanding replica of an original series hand phaser, so now I need the rifle version to go with it. Don't you think something like that would look great over my mantle? Anyone? Bueller?
The original Enterprise filming model - That's right: I'm talking about the original 11-foot model built in 1964 and which for decades has called the National Air & Space Museum its home. It's not currently on display, as it's in the midst of being restored for presentation in a new gallery exhibit next year. This makes it almost the perfect time for someone to liberate the old girl and ship her to Ward Manor. My living room is big enough and its ceiling high enough that the Enterprise could hang there with plenty of room to spare. I mean, the AMT model I've got there now just looks silly.
A new TV series - Can I get an "Amen?" Look, can we talk? I've enjoyed most of Star Trek's cinematic outings, but I think the Final Frontier has always been best served on television. It's in that realm where we can take deep dives into the characters, and lay out multilayered, complex storylines that don't have to be resolved in one or two hours. Whether we're talking about a continuation, a reboot, or something in between, I honestly don't have a preference. I just want to see Star Trek return TV and the types of stories that it quite often did so well. And hey, if they wanted to return to the Kirk/Spock era but use a different ship and crew? I can offer a couple of shameless suggestions (:: cough :: Vanguard :: cough :: Seekers). Oh, and once the new series is up and running? My last Christmas wish list item would be....
A set visit - Seems pretty self-explanatory, right? I don't need to be in the show, or be given a guided tour, or have a meeting with the cast or staff. I just want to run through the corridors, sit in or on everything, touch everything, maybe sit in the captain's chair and pretend I'm saving the Federation from the scourge of some evil alien menace for an hour or so, and then hop down the street for some In-N-Out Burger. Is that too much too ask?
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Dayton Ward is the New York Times bestselling author or co-author of numerous novels and short stories, including a whole bunch of stuff set in the Star Trek universe, and often working with friend and co-writer Kevin Dilmore. He's also written (or co-written) for Star Trek Communicator, Star Trek Magazine, Syfy.com, and Tor.com, and is a monthly contributor to the Novel Spaces writers blog. As he is still a big ol' geek at heart, Dayton is known to wax nostalgic about all manner of Star Trek topics over on his own blog, The Fog of Ward.