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Some time ago someone wrote a piece about the difference between SW and ST being about narratives of personal power; essentially SW usually hinges on a "chosen one" plot and special abilities vs. ST essentially being competence porn, where it's always about someone working really hard to get where they are. In ST power is essentially shared governance, and a lot of Kirk's (and Picard's and Sisko's) preoccupation with command comes from their desire to do the best for the community ("The needs of the many" etc.) in a way that SW just isn't (even the good guys have a blurry relationship between the Republic and the Resistance, let alone the Empire and--my favorite from the prequels--the elected monarchy and the familial Senatorial rank). TL;DR SW is about special people and ST is about how everyone can be special. >_>


( 11 comments — Add your .02 )
Jan. 23rd, 2016 06:56 pm (UTC)
Well analyzed. :)
Jan. 23rd, 2016 09:05 pm (UTC)
Jan. 23rd, 2016 09:02 pm (UTC)
That's a good point. For me, SW is fantasy, while ST is science fiction. SW is based on mythology and character archetypes, so it's like our foundation. ("A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away" = "once upon a time.") ST, on the other hand, is about the future, it's about our aspirations. They're opposite ends of a spectrum. So nobody's required to like both or even one of them, but I think setting them up as competing is silly, since they're so very different.
Jan. 23rd, 2016 09:04 pm (UTC)
Yeah, there was a post on io9 yesterday about SW vs. ST and an ensuing brief discussion on Facebook, and these were my thoughts. :) I thought the io9 article was headache-inducing in the extreme because the argument was basically "SW is better than ST because all anyone does in ST is talk all the time" and, just, >_
Jan. 23rd, 2016 10:25 pm (UTC)
My problem with SW is that they don't talk ENOUGH. It's all about the shoot-em-up. The bad guys are pretty standard bad guys, whereas in ST sometimes it's not all what it appears to be. Basically, do you want to think a little or just eat your popcorn in peace.
Jan. 23rd, 2016 10:26 pm (UTC)
Jan. 26th, 2016 01:42 am (UTC)
Star Wars is fun, no doubt. And so is Star Trek. But no one's been inspired to invent something that changed the world because of Star Wars: flip phone, for one example.

I've just always thought Star Trek was about the possibility of science and of the future of humanity. It's probably not so popular right now because everybody's all into dystopian, bitter futures, but I'd still prefer to have hope that we're not going to destroy ourselves before we get our act together. And Star Trek has always been about hope, imho.
Jan. 26th, 2016 05:18 pm (UTC)
I was thinking about this some more last night, and I think you're right about the idea of hope being kind of central to ST's ethos. And I was trying to figure out what SW's ethos might be, and....I'm actually not sure? Seven movies and a strew of books and a cartoon and I'm honestly not sure.
Jan. 26th, 2016 06:49 pm (UTC)
I'd try to make some comment about it being a statement about blindly (and rigidly) adhering to a religious orthodoxy, but it doesn't really even keep that thought up.

This was a learning post for me about the Jedi (and Sith): It's a Tumblr link, but I seriously did not realize all the Jedi BS, which does strike me as an aesthetic that is out of touch with reality.
Jan. 26th, 2016 07:22 pm (UTC)
Wow. Yeah. And the Jedis are looked at uncritically in and out of the world. Well then.
Mar. 23rd, 2016 08:47 pm (UTC)
Star Trek and Star Wars
I see the SW series as a myth cycle and indeed I read that Joseph Campbell, until his death, became sort of a mentor to George Lucas as he unfolded Luke's hero journey.

On the other hand, ST is fiction; science fiction filled with the wonderful inherent probabilities of present and future technology ; tricorderers, tractor beams, communicators etc. and, as you put it so well, the compelling overarching theme that in the future everyone can be special.
( 11 comments — Add your .02 )

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