Saturday, December 24, 2011

Star Trek: The Next Generation Christmas Special

BLOGGERS' SPOILER ALERT: If you have children who are anxiously awaiting for Santa Claus to come visit them tonight the following may contain some real "spoilers". Please do not let them read this post.

On this Christmas eve I want to share an idea I have for what I think would be one of the coolest Christmas editions of a SiFi episodic TV series ever.

Ever since TV shows began there have been special Christmas episodes. It seems that no matter who the star is or what the premise of the show there is always an acceptable reason for having a Christmas show. Everybody celebrates Christmas on TV; even Jewish people. 

Well, I have an idea for a Christmas episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. Even though the series hasn't been on the air in 17 years I think this would make a great episode. 

With the amazing, magical and seemingly impossible mission that Santa Claus accomplishes each Christmas season one can only assume that the means by which he does it is something beyond anything we as "ordinary" human beings are aware of.

This is where the connection between Santa and the crew of The Federation's flagship, The Starship Enterprise D, intersect. The technology in the world of Star Trek does not exist in our world today. However if someone had access to all the Enterprise's technology and hardware they could easily mirror what Santa does every Christmas Eve.

My idea for a TNG Christmas Special is not perfect. It's only a bare bones synopsis. The details would have to be worked out. I'm afraid I'm not enough of a Star Trek geek to do it effectively. Anyway, here's my idea for a Star Trek: TNG Christmas story. 

The episode is centered around Data. The android is on his way back from a conference by himself in a shuttle craft. He experiences warp engine trouble and has to land on the closest planet. 

Unable to contact the Enterprise, Data is forced to hike from the mountains (where he conveniently crashed seemingly undetected by the planet's inhabitants) to the nearest populated area. He quickly discovers that he's stranded on a planet with a society that mirrors the same culture as earth in the 1950's. 

From the weather and the decorations that adorn the town's shopping district after accessing his memory banks he can only conclude that the people were celebrating the Christmas season. As he searches in a local hardware store for what he needs to repair his shuttle craft he is befriended by a little girl, named Virginia. 

In the course of their encounter Virginia discloses that she is a "doubting Thomas" when it comes to Santa. She doesn't believe that he is real. Having familiarized himself with the traditions and customs of Santa and the importance of a child believing for as long as possible Data decides to take some action. 

He wants to show Virginia that there is a Santa Claus by doing exactly what Santa does on Christmas eve.  He returns to his shuttle and comes up with a plan. Using the transporter, a portable replicator (this may not actually exist in the TNG world but they could have been added for the sake of this episode) and other Federation technology he makes a way to play Santa to the entire town where Virginia lives. 

He limits himself to just the town because that's all it would take to convince the little girl to believe in the symbolic representation of the Christmas spirit of giving. 

Of course there would have to be some kind of antagonist in the episode. Perhaps a scientist who discovers the abandoned shuttle and tries to prove that the new stranger in town, Data, is the alien that it belongs to.

Of course there would have to be the obligatory moralistic ending typical of every episodic series' Christmas show. But there would also some kind of action that would result in a thrilling conclusion. 

But the main part of the story would be the relationship between Data and Virginia. The main story arc would be the clever way he uses Federation technology to be kind to his new young friend. 

So there you have my Star Trek: the Next Generation Christmas episode idea. As I mentioned earlier the idea isn't complete and may not seem like much to the extent that I've expounded on it. It may seem like a strange suggestion but if you check around you'll find some very unusual people have hosted or played characters in Christmas specials. 

You may not think it's such a good idea or maybe you're not even a Star Trek fan and don't really care. If either of those are true I'm sorry. I've had this idea for a while and just had to get it out there. This year's Christmas eve post seemed like a good time to do it.

I want to take these last paragraphs to thank you for taking the time to read this blog throughout the year. I'm on the verge of a very significant milestone in regard to the number of posts. There will be more on that in a few days. 

I want to wish you and your family & friends a very Merry Christmas. Even though I've been posting consistently over this holiday season I'll be taking a couple of days off to do some other things. I'll let you know when I'm back. Once Again...

Merry Christmas 
God Bless Us, Every One

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