Yesterday was the 25th anniversary of the release of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. Much has been made of how this movie "saved the franchise" after the languid and ponderous Star Trek: The Motion Picture. While I don't share a distaste of TMP like many do, it is apparent that the Trek world did need to be "reinvigorated" for a new audience that had grown up with Star Wars, and Wrath of Khan didn't disappoint. It had all the "action" and cutting edge special effects audiences had come to expect, yet still hit all the right notes that had endeared the crew of the Enterprise to fans originally: life and death; the relationship among the crew, particularly among the "big three" of Kirk, Spock and Bones; literary references and ambitions; grand philosophical ideas told through the personal prism; the nature and occasional hubris of mankind's ambitions.
As I've referenced before, it was my dad, Sam, who got me watching The Original Series on grainy UHF syndicated pre-cable repeats, and cultivated my love for all things Trek. We were in line together at the threatre on the first night for the release of all the Trek movies and I'll never forget sitting there at the end of Khan, both of us looking straight ahead, trying to "man up" and not let on that we had a few tears streaming down our cheeks. (In fact, it was only the second time I can recall weeping with Sam, the first being when we watched Brian's Song). Fortunately, Wrath of Khan wasn't the end for Spock, nor for the times Sam and I would enjoy this entertainment legacy passed from generation to generation.
Here is a brief remembrance of the anniversary, along with some links recognizing the date the franchise had new wind blown into its sails.
Live Long and Prosper.