Abrams also came to the franchise as a fan filming a movie in a familiar mythos. Similarly, much of the Discovery team are seasoned Trek veterans like Nicholas Meyer (Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan) and Joe Menosky (Star Trek: The Next Generation), although the writers’ room boasts some neophytes as well. Reigniting Star Wars and Star Trek come from the desire to watch something beloved grow and flourish again, as much as from a practical ($$) level.

Still, both franchises met with countless hurdles along the way, including fan expectations and a somewhat lapsed public consciousness. In the case of Star Wars, Abrams and Lucasfilm had to capture the loyalty of the hardcore base and appeal to general audiences only peripherally familiar with the story, something they succeeded at handily. Much like Force Awakens, Discovery can only accept so much die-hard input before committing to a unified vision, seeing as every fan has their own franchise dogma. But if Harberts and Berg can juggle fan, network, and newcomer needs, in the same manner as TFA, the streaming saga has a real shot.

By revisiting the central mythos, Abrams’ film also crafted a plausible new framing plot and kept it franchise-simple: a new, eviler Empire (the First Order) threatens to blitzkrieg all over the galaxy and a band of plucky rebels (The Resistance), guided by a gaggle of familiar faces, tries to stop them. No frills, but it works well for Episode VII, comfortably balancing the franchise’s mystique with its colossal nostalgia quotient. By the same token, Discovery‘s premise heads to an era just before The Original Series, and its primary antagonists are the most nefarious villains/allies in Federation history: the Klingons.

Thanks to variances in technology and lapses in early series canon, though, the producers have tweaked the Klingons’ look and their iconic vessels (which may warrant further explanations later on) to give the show a fresh feel – and also frustrate purists. Starfleet also got an upgrade, with sleeker ships and modern bridge design, which is understandable under the circumstances. While the bulkier, model kit ships and push-button controls would’ve given the series a retro feel, they’d also appear pretty darn quaint to an audience convinced that flip phones are so 2009.

Communicators Star Trek Discovery How Star Wars Lead To Star Trek: Discovery

Yet romanticized aspects of the show did return, including the flip phone-inspiring communicators, Enterprise-TOS bridging uniforms, and era-appropriate phasers. However, blending the tech look and feel isn’t the only page the program borrowed from The Force Awakens’ book. Abrams once again built his Star Wars foundation on friendly faces, in particular, fan favorites like Chewie, Han, Leia, Luke, and C-3PO. More than just fan-service, though, the classic characters connect old fans and newcomers, allowing Abrams and his descendants to flash-developed the affable newcomers.

Next Page: What Discovery Changes About The Mythos

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