False Things You've Been Believing About Star Trek
With the ongoing story of the Federation of Planets and at least a couple of ships named Enterprise, the Star Trek franchise has inspired generations of die-hard fans. There are still a few persistent myths that the crew just can’t seem to shake, though, so here are some of the false “facts” that you’ve been believing about Star Trek.
During the first season of Star Trek: Discovery, a minor scandal broke out when actor Jason Isaacs admitted he was told not to ad-lib a particular swear word - not because of the profanity, but because it included the word "god." Star Trek has long promoted a humanist and non-religious view of the future, with spirituality usually left to the aliens, and religious figures like God and the Devil often used as tricks by the bad guys.
Trek producer Brannon Braga once said that creator Gene Roddenberry handed down an edict to the show’s writing staff, saying that, “Religion and superstition and mystical thinking were not to be part of his universe.”
The show is clearly meant to take place in a future based on atheism and secular humanism, but in practice, that’s not exactly the case.
While Picard wasn't walking around with a giant crucifix around his neck, human religion has been a bit more present in Star Trek than is popularly thought. We see the Enterprise’s chapel on the Original Series episode "Balance of Terror," and Star Trek: Generations includes a celebration of Christmas, so some version of Christianity certainly seems to have survived to the 23rd century. Uhura even directly references Christianity as being impossible to ridicule in “Bread and Circuses,” when the crew encounters a technologically advanced Roman Empire who have “Sun Worshippers” broadcasting on pirate radio.
That’s a lot of love for the Lord on the supposedly atheist show.
Watch the video for more false things you've been believing about Star Trek!
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A future without religion | 0:18
The All-New Next Generation? | 1:59
A future of Equality | 3:56
No conflict in the crew? | 5:27
Redshirts must die! | 6:46
The golden years? | 8:13
Chekov’s Soviet origins | 9:08
“Misquote me, Scotty.” | 10:24