10 utterly terrible Star Trek TV show ideas

SciFi Ideas recently shared a fake article on its Facebook page reporting rumours of two new Star Trek TV shows being developed by CBS, one a sci-fi forensic show like CSI, and another an emergency service/rescue type show. Both ideas completely made up of course, but it made me think about other possibly terrible TV shows based in the futuristic Star Trek universe.

Warp Factor X

Klingons singingA singing show, just like X-Factor and all those other boring reality shows, but where all contestants wear Starfleet uniforms, or dress as Klingons, and sing songs that add words to the various Star Trek shows theme music. Or Voyager’s EMH’s favourite opera. Or translate popular Human songs into Klingon like this car-crash: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b0YC3RpvE3M

Of course judges could be Starfleet admiralty, the President of Earth, or gasseous sentient spaceclouds. Rules would have to be set of whether to allow aliens or holograms who can sing beyond the normal vocal range.

Cooking with Neelix

NeelixThe only idea on this list which is official. Sort of. The Star Trek Cookbook is a real book showing recipes to create dishes from across the Star Trek galaxy, from the perspective of Neelix, who of course has to feed the multispecies crew of the USS Voyager. In the TV show version of the book, Neelix prepares an exotic meal every week, from Ferengi tube-grubs to tongue-dissolving Bolian curry.

The show could also have a segment hosted by Quark, showing cocktails from across the Alpha quadrant and feeding them to everyone’s barfly, Morn. If he can keep shut up long enough of course. You can get the Star Trek Cookbook on Amazon here.

Pimp my starship

Pimped starshipIf you’ve spent any time warping around the galaxy in Star Trek Online you’ll notice many people aren’t satisfied with the bog-standard look of a galaxy class. There’s millions of different ways to customize the appearance of your starship, from hull markings, the colorful glow of your warp engines, and equipment attachments. For example it’s pretty normal to pass starships in sector space with glowing green warp nacelles and Borg modifications.

This TV show would showcase the very best in starship modifications and help one Starfleet Captain each week turn his drab grey Sovereign class into something infinitely more gaudy – with a built in multimedia suite, of course.

Star Trek Gogglebox

Picard and Riker facepalmingChannel 4 in the UK must at some point have had a crisis meeting where they had a time-slot to fill but had no budget. So the idea they came up with was “Gogglebox”, a TV show where you get to watch people watching TV shows. The camera is pointed at people watching this week’s TV, so you get to hear their boring opinions and reactions. The Star Trek spin on this would be Riker and Picard sat down watching 21st century TV, and facepalming in disapproval.

Or instead perhaps Federation Temporal Investigators agents Lucsly and Dulmur (from the DS9 episode Trials and Tribble-ations) are scouring archived 21st century TV to search for time travel violations?

The Federation politics show

A boring Admiral or politicianThis show would be a serious no-fun look at the politics within the United Federation of Planets, focusing on the political impact the Federation has on the galaxy. It could have talking heads of important Federation Ambassadors, and cover scandals around Starfleet Admirals.

Segments of the show could talk about the strength of the Ferengi’s latinum versus the Federation’s non-currency economy, and in-depth analysis on the social effect of replicators on civilizations as a whole. This would probably be the most boring TV show ever, but would appeal to the Star Trek fans whose favourite bits are when they have to take a delegate to a conference.

Star Trek: Zombies

Star Trek ZombiesA few years ago, Marvel comics published a series of comics about a parallel universe where all the Marvel heroes were zombies. Why not do this in the Star Trek universe? The Enterprise is always encountering unusual phenomena, and the crew subjected to alien illnesses, so why not a virus turning them into the walking dead?

“Braaiiins” cries Worf, pointing at a nearby starship. “Make it so” says Picard, before his grotesque zombified arm drops off. Then zombie Riker rams the Enterprise into another ship leaning on that joystick from Insurrection (where did that come from?!), and they can continue to chomp their way through every starship and starbase in the galaxy.

Come replicate with me

Replicated mealI’m not sure how popular this show is internationally, but “Come Dine With Me” is a UK reality TV show where contestants take it in turn to cook for each other, often with hilarious results when things go wrong, and a charismatic narrator who’s an expert in sarcasm. The Star Trek version of this show has redshirts feeling the pressure of programming their replicators for a banquet to impress their superior officers.

It’s probably a lot more technical than a standard cooking show, as the contestants have the ability to program the molecular structure of their meals. We could see the contestants in the holodeck deciding what it looks like when it comes out of the replicator, to how the proteins are textured to give a pleasing taste when synthesized. And of course the hilarious consequences where it all goes wrong and the computer synthesizes brown goo instead of the meal, or the contestants all die when a nebulous alien ghost infects the replicators.

The galactic travel program

Stunning views of the galaxySpace is big. Really, really big. And we’ve seen various crews of the Enterprise explore it (as well as Voyager of course). So there are undoutably some excellent destinations for the discerning holidaymaker.

This program will highlight the best places around the galaxy for a relaxing getaway, from the stunning Risa holiday resort, to the thrilling Bajoran fire caves, even the best L-class planets for a snowboarding holiday.

Of course the travel program should also tell us the best places to drink and eat fine cuisine, perhaps answering questions like “Where can a vegetarian eat on Qo’noS?” and “Which planet’s ambient temperature is best to drink a Raktajino” and “What does Saurian Brandy taste like after travelling through the Barzan wormhole?”.

Star Trek: Early days

Space shuttle EnterpriseThere’s nothing cooler than a prequel showing how things began. Star Trek (2009) showed how Kirk became Captain (before graduating, apparently). Enteprise was set before that.

In the film First Contact, we saw that Zefram Cochrane invented the first Warp-capable spaceship which prompted Humanity’s first contact with aliens. Before that, before World War 3, before Zefram Cochrane was but a twinkle in his father’s eye, Gene Roddenberry’s Earth was identical to ours except for 2 things, they had the Eugenics wars in 1996, and more importantly they didn’t have a TV show called Star Trek.

The TV series “Star Trek: Early days” shows Planet Earth before space travel, aliens or replicators. In fact it’s no different to any normal modern TV drama, apart from it bears the name Star Trek, which immediately draws attention from Trekkies, who devotedly watch each episode waiting for a glimpse of science fiction goodness which will never come.

Keeping up with the Cardassians

A reality TV show following around threMeet the Cardassianse Cardassian sisters as they go around doing… Cardassian things. Treating Bajorans badly, torturing people, being sneaky etc, and relaxing in the extreme heat of Cardassian saunas.

I honestly can’t think of a single reason why a show about Cardassians needs to exist. Then again, I can’t think of a reason why most of today’s reality shows exist, and they could all be improved by adding a gritty torture scene in which the protagonists shout “There… are… four… lights!”

There are some not-quite-as-bad ideas for Star Trek spinoffs here.


Article written by David Ball.

  • A Federation politics show could be really interesting in the style of West Wing. 🙂 A novel tried this mix (Articles of the Federation) but this wasn’t too good.

  • So about that Star Trek: Zombies idea…

  • Omg amazing!

  • Here’s another for ya:

    THE NEXT TOP CAPTAIN
    Prospective Starfleet wannabees are put through Kobayashi Maru-type scenario after scenario each week–sometimes giving them a hint of what to expect and time to prepare, sometimes teaming them up to invite cooperation, sometimes interrupting them in sleep or in private moments–and real Starfleet ex-captains evaluate them, eliminating a contestant every week, until only one remains as THE NEXT TOP CAPTAIN. (The winner gets an ROTC scholarship to Starfleet Academy, all expenses paid, and a weekend pass to an Orion brothel.)

  • Chris Burtt

    Keeping up with the cardassians is what I always think of when I hear keeping up with the Kardashians.