The good news: a new Star Trek series will premiere on CBS in January 2017! The bad news: after the first episode, you’ll only be able to watch it on CBS’ video on demand channel, which has a $5.99 a month subscription fee.
I love the Star Trek franchise, so the idea of a new series — with new characters and plot lines — is very welcome, indeed. But the idea of charging people to watch the series, rather than putting it on a free broadcast network, seems antithetical to the whole Star Trek egalitarian/United Federation of Planets/”we’re all in this together”/the future is about a united human race following the better angels of its nature message. I don’t remember any Star Trek, The Original Series episodes — other than those featuring Harcourt Fenton Mudd, and maybe The Trouble With Tribbles — where material items or money seemed to play any part. The fact that they’re charging for new episodes therefore seems kind of chintzy of me.
Will I watch the new series? I’ll watch the first episode, for sure. And if it looks good, maybe I’ll watch more and pay the $5.99 a month. But I didn’t really watch much of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine or Star Trek: Voyager or Enterprise, because they didn’t really grab me. If the writers can come up with new characters of the quality of Spock or Jean-Luc Picard or Data or, of course, James Tiberius Kirk, I’ll tune in. If not, I think I’ll probably save that $72.00 a year and use it to watch the next Star Trek movie.