Promotion-wise, one of the cleverest things CBS All-Access streamer has come up with is a series of short (15 minutes +/-) episodes giving us new glimpses along the Star Trek timeline. Not only does this give trekkers new info about the Trek Universe, it also explains some early inconsistencies, like Spock’s tendency to smile – sometimes inappropriately – back in ST:TOS season 1.
Can fans live without this info and stay fans? Probably, but this TVWriter™ minion has a confession to make: I love feeling like I’m being catered too. And the Short Treks definitely give me that warm buzz. Especially the one about the Spockmeister:
MICHAEL CHABON EXPLAINS HIS NEW STAR TREK SHORT’S CONNECTIONS TO THE NEXT GENERATION AND PICARD
by Ryan Britt
The showrunner of Star Trek: Picard and writer of the recent Spock and Number One-centric Short Treks episode “Q&A” could very well be the most talented fanfiction writer on the planet. Though he’s won a slew of big-time awards (from the Pultizer to the Hugo) for his novels and works of nonfiction, Michael Chabon considers his writing on Star Trek to be no different than any other fanfiction writer.
“I mean, this is licensed and approved and maybe that invalidates its status as fanfiction,” Chabon tells SYFY WIRE. “But I don’t think so. I’m just sharing this with all my fellow fans out there who have always wondered about these questions.”
The questions Chabon alludes to are front and center in the Short Treks episode “Q&A.” First: why the heck did Spock smile in the originally unaired Star Trek Original Series episode “The Cage?” Second, after “The Cage,” how come Spock seemed to borrow his entire personality from Number One?
In writing “Q&A” Chabon says he directly crafted a fictional response to these specific contradictions of old school Trek canon. SYFY WIRE talked with Chabon at length about writing “Q&A,” reconciling “The Cage” canon, homages to a very famous Next Generation episode, and what it all means for Star Trek: Picard.
**SPOILER WARNING: Spoilers ahead for the Short Treks episode “Q&A.”**
“There might not be another character quite like Number One in any other fandom, that I can think of,” Chabon says of the steely USS Enterprise First Officer and navigator, circa the 2250s. “The subject of how to treat her canonicity is a subject that could probably only interest fans. I mean, you have to be more than a slightly casual fan to even know about her up until the second season of Discovery….”