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Why Are They Devoted Slaves When They Could Be Creative?

July 25, 1999

Had Gene Roddenberry, in his youth, been as slavishly devoted to the fruit of someone else's creativity as the "Star Trek" fans portrayed in Roger Nygard's documentary and journal ("On the Trekkie Trail," June 20), it's doubtful that he'd ever have had the creativity, or time, to have given us "Star Trek."

Now that's the sadness of it. For every person co-opted into uncritical devotion to a cultural lollipop, the human race loses a significant part of that individual's own potential to create something unique--to create something that is part of the essential blood and bone of civilization.

That said, I--who have loved the original "Star Trek" series from its beginning--feel compelled to make a couple of corrections to the journal. (1) The actor who played the Klingon Kor in "Blood Oath" (and in the original-series episode "Errand of Mercy") spells his name John Colocos. (2) In the pilot episode of the original series, the commander was not a woman but, rather, the very male, if bland, Capt. Christopher Pike, played by the equally male, and equally bland, Jeffrey Hunter.

I haven't seen Nygard's film yet, but it makes me wonder if the series and fans wouldn't have been better served by someone more conversant in the "Star Trek" lore it purports to celebrate.

A. L. Hern

Los Angeles

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The Enterprise in the pilot had a female first officer, played by Majel Barrett, whose role changed to that of Nurse Chapel after that production because the viewing public was determined as not being ready for a woman to play a character as strong as the role demanded.

David Turner

Redondo Beach

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