‘Star Trek Into Darkness’ Easter Eggs & Trivia

Published 1 year ago by , Updated May 21st, 2013 at 7:03 pm, This is a list post.

Star Trek Into Darkness Easter Eggs Trivia With as rich a history and extended fiction as Star Trek Into Darkness is drawing from - the original show, the later films and TV series, and J.J. Abram's reboot - it's no surprise that plenty of subtle nods and hidden connections were buried in even the most action-packed sequences of the film. In case movie fans or Trekkies needed yet another reason to head back for a repeat viewing of Into Darkness (read our review), we've gathered a few of our favorite easter eggs and mentions that even the most devoted fans may have missed. Needless to say, there will be plenty of spoilers in our list of Star Trek Into Darkness Easter Eggs & Trivia, so read at your own risk.

Wise Words, Mr. Spock

Star Trek Into Darkness Trivia Spock Quote

The film doesn't take long to start paying tribute to Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982), even if the most iconic dialogue has been somewhat shifted. In the opening scene following Spock (Zachary Quinto) on his descent into the bowels of an active volcano, one of the character's most memorable lines from the original film - "the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few." - is given new context. While the line was previously spoken by Spock as foreshadowing his sacrifice to save the Enterprise, its placement in Into Darkness kept the spirit of Spock's logic intact, while hinting that the alternate reality of Abrams' universe is similar, but not identical to that of previous films. As did McCoy's outburst: "shut up Spock, we're trying to rescue you!" - from "The Immunity Syndrome" episode of The Original Series.

Body Movin'

Star Trek Into Darkness Trivia Beastie Boys Continuing the tradition of featuring the Beastie Boys in his Trek universe (the young Kirk's Corvette joyride in Star Trek was set to the band's "Sabotage") moviegoers are treated to yet another Beastie Boys single in Into Darknes. When Kirk (Chris Pine) is found emerging from bed - accompanied by a pair of tailed young ladies (played by real-life identical twins Katie and Kellie Cockrell) - a sample of "Body Movin' (Fatboy Slim Remix)" plays prominently in the background. More than keeping up a running joke, the scene seems to imply that Kirk is, in fact, a fan of the 20th Century New York musicians. What that means for the paradoxical mention of 'Mr. Spock' in the band's song "Intergalactic"...we still can't explain.

The Daystrom Institute

Star Trek Into Darkness Daystrom Institute

When John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch) sets his master plan into motion, setting off an explosion in the Kelvin Memorial Archive, the heads of Starfleet convene in a single boardroom to determine their response. One might wonder why it is that Admiral Pike and Kirk are called to the soaring "Daystrom Institute," not some heavily-fortified bunker, but Trekkies recognized the nod immediately. Named for the brilliant human scientist Dr. Richard Daystrom, the prestigious institute has appeared in several Trek series as the gathering place for Starfleet's top minds, and most groundbreaking technology. Since the institute survives well into the 24th century, we have to assume they upgraded their security shortly after the events of the film.

Section 31

Star Trek Into Darkness Trivia Section 31

When the target of Harrison's bombing is revealed to be not a simple archive, but a secret 'Section 31' installation, most audiences wouldn't bat an eye. The name 'Section 31' certainly sounds like a top secret government facility, even if they are up to some incredibly dangerous and morally questionable affairs. For starters: extorting Harrison to work for their cause, and building even more devastating weapons technology (with built-in passengers!). Of course, considering the history of Section 31 in Star Trek: Enterprise and Deep Space Nine, fans know that nothing is below the shadowy division. For those in the know, the mention raised suspicion even before the film's many twists were revealed.

Caped Crusaders

Star Trek Into Darkness Trivia Batman Despite being one of the most trustworthy and meaningful mentors to Jim Kirk, Admiral Pike (Bruce Greenwood) isn't able to provide Kirk and his crew with advice on how to deal with Admiral Marcus (Peter Weller) - a true shame, since he would know the man's mind better than most. ...Not due to their rank, but because both actors have voiced Batman. That in itself is an odd twist of fate, but the versions of the Dark Knight played by each is even more serendipitous: Greenwood voiced the hero in the animated feature Batman: Under the Red Hood (2010) and the Young Justice animated series, centering on the hero's greatest failure and successes as a father figure, respectively. Weller? He voiced the character in the animated adaptation of The Dark Knight Returns (2012) - a dark tale of an older, angrier Batman willing to do terrible things to save a world he feels is on the brink. Hmmm...

Call Me a Collector

Star Trek Into Darkness Trivia Model Ships Surely every fan noticed the extensive spaceship models displayed proudly on Admiral Marcus' desk during his meeting with Kirk and Spock, but the exact ships being shown may have slipped by all but the most discerning eye. In order, the ships are miniature replicas of: the real-life NASA shuttle Enterprise, the USS Enterprise XCV 330 (an early Vulcan design that led to a dead-end), the Enterprise NX-01 (the groundbreaking ship and star of Enterprise), the Phoenix (featured in First Contact for its instigation of contact with Vulcan), and the then-unrevealed USS Vengeance. Besides tying real space history into that of Starfleet, the models also illustrate Marcus' vision of the dreadnaught Vengeance paving the way for humanity's future.

Nurse Chapel

Star Trek Into Darkness Trivia Nurse Chapel There are few Starfleet bachelors with as much of a reputation as Jim Kirk, even if he can't quite keep all his romantic conquests straight. When Dr. Carol Marcus (Alice Eve) first informs Kirk that his reputation has preceded him, she mentions a mutual acquaintance, Christine Chapel - a woman he has no memory of whatsoever. Kirk may not remember, but Trekkies will; Nurse Chapel was not only a med-bay mainstay on the original TV series, but was also played by Majel Barrett, the future wife of series creator Gene Roddenberry. Bones (Karl Urban) made reference to an off-screen 'Nurse Chapel' in the reboot, but these lines prove that even the slightest changes in this alternate timeline are significant to anyone who notices them.

Red Shirt, Mr. Chekov

Star Trek Into Darkness Chekov Red Shirt

As any Star Trek fan knows, a red shirt means death is all but guaranteed. So when Kirk instructs Chekov to replace his uniform with that worn by the engineering crew - "put on a red shirt" - fans knew why the order gave Chekov pause. It was played for a laugh, but the hint that Chekov may be in serious peril was a deliberate choice by the writers. In fact, every main member of the cast who had previously been out of the action comes face-to-face with death in Into Darkness. Spock in the volcano, Uhura against the Klingons, Bones and the torpedo, Scotty aboard the Vengeance - the list goes on and on. Could the curse of the red shirt now be broken?

A Weakened Kronos?

Star Trek Into Darkness Klingons Praxis Fans of the Star Trek feature films will already be familiar with the changing attitudes (and constant tension) between the Federation and the Klingons. In Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (1991), the Klingons are forced to pursue peace when their homeworld's moon, Praxis, explodes catastrophically, crippling energy production and tearing apart Kronos' ozone layer. Into Darkness, like Star Trek VI, shows Hikaru Sulu take command of his own ship, but that's not all they have in common; as seen in the latest film, Kronos already features the remains of an exploded moon in orbit around the race's home planet. Could Praxis already have exploded in this alternate timeline? It's a question we'll have to wait to see answered, but Kronos did seem like an inhospitable world, with the Ketha province (a farming lowland) already completely devoid of life...

The Mudd Incident

Star Trek Into Darkness Trivia Mudd Another easy one to miss: when Kirk starts to explain his plan for landing on Kronos to apprehend John Harrison, he cites the need to erase all connections to Starfleet - beginning with transportation. What to use instead of a shuttle? A merchant vessel commandeered during "the Mudd Incident last month." When pulled out of the surrounding film, it's impossible for any Trekkie to miss the allusion to Harcourt "Harry" Mudd, a space-pirate/smuggler/con man that was used mainly for comic relief in the original series (for obvious reasons). The Into Darkness prequel comic explains that the "incident" actually centers on Mudd's daughter, but the nod to the memorable character is one of our favorites.

Hello Again, Cupcake

Star Trek Into Darkness Trivia Cupcake Hendorff Most eagle-eyed fans of J.J. Abrams' reboot noticed the return appearance of actor Jason Matthew Smith - the Starfleet officer affectionately dubbed 'Cupcake' by Kirk. But it's no coincidence that Kirk selects him as part of his hand-picked crew meant to capture John Harrison on a hostile world. As the accompanying Star Trek comic book series showed, Cupcake - referred to by his actual name, G.P. Hendorff, in Into Darkness - went on to become one of the most committed and capable members of the new Enterprise's crew, and promised to follow Kirk, despite him being promoted over Spock. For fans of the original TV series, Hendorff was one of the many red shirts killed in the episode "The Apple" - in the alternate timeline of the movies, he was saved by Spock.

Elementary, My Dear Spock

Star Trek Into Darkness Trivia Sherlock It's no secret, even if it is a little known fact, that Leonard Nimoy played Sherlock Holmes on stage following the end of the original Star Trek series. The role may not be his most iconic, but it did lay the groundwork for one heck of a strange coincidence. Spock's explanation of the alternate-reality-wormhole theory in the previous film was based largely on the assertion that “once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth” - taken at the time as a nod to Nimoy, since the quote is attributed to the fictional detective. For the sequel, what were the odds that the villain should be played by a man perhaps most famous for his portrayal of Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock; albeit on television, not the stage.

Reflections

Star Trek Into Darkness Trivia Joseph Gatt Easily one of the most alarming and memorable members of the bridge crew, the entity known as 'Science Officer 0718' and played by Joseph Gatt (pictured left) also possesses an odd Easter egg. One look at the man's glowing eyes and augmented voice reveal him to be not-quite-human, but it's the round device on the back of his head that we're interested in. Besides a blue glow, makeup supervisor David LeRoy Anderson decided that something had to go into the transparent device on the back of Gatt's head. As a tribute to the one part of the Enterprise bridge that audiences almost never see, Anderson embedded a small model of the bridge's ceiling into the receptacle. A miniaturized reflection of a rarely-seen piece of set design is an odd choice, but given the prominence of the character, we may be getting more chances to see it firsthand.

You Sound Familiar

Star Trek Into Darkness Trivia Bill Hader Audiences may have been too distracted by the cool blue and snappy uniforms seen aboard the USS Vengeance to pay attention to what they were hearing, not seeing. Mainly, Saturday Night Live alum Bill Hader's voice. After lending his voice to the disembodied narration and commentary of Scott Pilgrim vs the World (2010), Hader as apparently gotten quite the promotion, voicing the computers of the USS Vengeance. It's nothing new for a human voice to be used to bring life to a starship's more rote functions: in J.J. Abrams' reboot, Gene Roddenberry's wife Majel Barrett was called upon to give the Enterprise a voice (continuing the tradition started in the many series and films). Since the actress passed away in 2008, the Enterprise's voice is largely downplayed for the sequel.

Returning Regulars

Star Trek Into Darkness Trivia Cameos Director J.J. Abrams has a bit of a habit when it comes to casting friends for smaller roles in his films, and Into Darkness is no exception. Besides once again casting Christopher Doohan - the son of James Doohan (the original Scotty) - as a Transport Officer, Abrams also recast his father and father in-law as Starfleet admirals during Kirk's memorial speech; the pair had previously appeared at the Iowa bar in Star Trek (2009). Abrams didn't stop there, casting real-life veterans as Starfleet guards, and even legendary video game actor Nolan North as one of the Vengeance's bridge crew - just because he and his son love video games. Those are the only cameos we know of so far, but we're positive more will crop up over time.

Conclusion

Star Trek Into Darkness Easter Eggs Trivia Those are all the nods and Easter eggs we've been able to spot, but be sure to point out ones you feel are worth mentioning. We've tried to avoid the obvious adapted elements of previous storylines and villains, and will do our best to keep them updated as more arrive. If you haven't already, be sure to check out: Star Trek Into Darkness is in theaters now. ----- Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce.
TAGS: star trek, star trek into darkness

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  1. Forgot to mention we actually met Dr. Richard Daystrom in the TOS episode “The Ultimate Computer”, and if I’m not mistaken the Daystrom Institute hadn’t been created yet in that timeline. Also, Spock himself used that Sherlock Holmes line in “ST VI: The Undiscovered Country” when the bridge crew figured out they were victimized by a Klingon Bird of Prey that could use its weapons while cloaked.

    • Yeah, I brought that up about the institute not being in TOS in an earlier post. And yes, Spock did say the Holmes line in Trek 6.

      • Data has also used this line a few times, and he of course played Sherlock in the holo deck in the episodes “Elementary, Dear Data”, and “Ship in a Bottle.”.

  2. The hatch Kahn and Kirk fly into on the Vengeance, 101A… wasn’t that the old Self Destruct Code?

    • That was Kirk’s part, partly. chekhv had another one with 2B in it…

  3. How about Roses’s boyfriend Micky from Doctor Who as the saboteur for a cameo?

  4. Its spelled Qo’nos not Krono’s…. major screw up in the movie

    • The human spelling was adapted to “Kronos” like the name from legend, but the original Klingon word (t’lingon-mah) is Q’onos (sp?), so calling it a mistake is a stretch.

    • They use the English spelling of Qo’noS (Kronos) in the subtitles of Uhura trying to speak Klingon in Star Trek VI as well. It’s not a screw-up at all.

  5. i knew it was khan in the loading bay scene with scotty saying 72 torpedoes as the bottony bay had 72 survivors in TOS. now for the selfdestruct code its as follows Destruct sequence 1, code 1, 1A
    Destruct sequence 2, code 1, 1A, 2B
    Destruct sequence 3, code 1B, 2B, 3
    Code 000, destruct 0

  6. Into Darkness features a line by Bones that he had delivered Gorn babies. That moment is from the Star Trek video game that came out this year. Kirk knocks out Scotty in place of Spock giving him the Vulcan Neck Pinch. Sulu’s very capable and even intimidating moment in the Captain’s chair is surely a reference to him becoming a respected Captain himself in the original timeline. Weller was a similar villain in the prequel series “Enterprise” in it’s last season.

    • You are mistaken. In this new Star Trek Kirk knocks out Scotty with a punch after Scotty tells Kirt it is too dangerous to go into the chamber. In The Wrath of Kahn Spocks is told by Dr McCoy that it is way too dangerous to go into the chamber. Spock responds “You may be right Doctor” Then Spock says to check on someone and as the good Dr turns away from Spock he used the Vulcan Nerve Pinch to knock out McCoy and then he Mind Melds with McCoy and says Remember. In this Star Trek, Spock Mind Melds with Admiral Pike when Pike is dieing. Because it is a parallel universe some of the same things will occur. Everyone is younger in character in this Star Trek due to Nero going back in time accidentally and using advanced weaponry. So Starfleet has to kick it up a notch to stay one step ahead of the game. . .Kirk was destined to be the captain of the Enterprise in either universe. What is cool is that the actor playing Chekhov I think is actually Russian.

    • Not a very similar guy, really. Both were brutally committed to their beliefs, but in Enterprise he was a pro-human activist of sorts with a private faction of scientists and soldiers. Despite his bigotry and villainy, that man was seen as something of a hero for his dedication to keeping racial purity of humans and human culture. His story was not entirely a failure, as it led to Martian laws that preserved the human centric society he sought to define. Wish he had been the same person, but he wasn’t.

  7. Re: the weakened Klingon homeworld… Nero ripped through a Klingon fleet of significant size (47). That had to shift the power balance of the Empire. Civil war, rebelling subjugated species – anything could have caused the downfall of the Klingons after that large of an incident.

    • Would be cool if Nero’s Borg-augmented ship of the future had either scanned Praxis or he simply knew the “future” and chose to crack the moon early as a parting gift to his captors. He may have been alive when the moon cracked the first time, but I don’t recall hearing his age.

  8. The ‘original’ Khan as portrayed by Ricardo Montalban had a Mexican accent. So why does the ‘Into Darkness’ Khan have an English accent. Case in point, Chekhov and Scotty retain their proper accents.

    • The original actor had the accent, but the character of Khan was always from India. When casting rumors included Benicio del Toro I thought they were redoing the odd mix of Mexican and Indian, but they got even weirder!

  9. You forgot to mention R2-D3, Abrams said in an interview on The Tonight Show that he’s in there during Kirk and Khan’s flight to the USS Vengeance. I didn’t catch him in the midnight showing but I’m sure someone has.

  10. Not sure if it was mentioned… There is an oversight concerning the distant traveled when Kirk and crew decided to warp away from “black badass ship” and within the time it takes Carol Marcus to arive on the bridge to tell Kirk that they cant outrun her fathers ship. Immediately the enterprise is plummeled with shots that throws them out of warp… so… how could both ships fall down to earth?… they were no where near earth… if they were they would have flown staight past is they werent forcibly dropped from warp. The planet they are falling towards was earth, i remember someone on the bridge saying it.

  11. i noticed the mudd reference… and the mudd episode is where they are introduced to tribbles… was thinking that’s where that tribble came from. and i also realized it was khan when i heard 72 torpedoes… and i was amazed when i heard them reference section 31… that was first introduced in ds9 as part of the dominion war.

    • Just to be clear, Section 31 is in no way a Dominion-War-centric group. They are established at least as far back as the show Enterprise, (about 100 years prior to Kirk), in which Lt. Reed is associated with them. It is a shadow section of the government that has always been established as intelligence operatives with disturbing amounts of access to pivotal insights. It makes sense that any intelligence group would be concerned with any and all war, but it wasn’t their inception or purpose. What really does NOT make sense is that while humanity pools it’s resources to create the finest flagship our planet has ever known, a secret faction has already built a vastly more impressive juggernaught that is kept a secret. I know the economy of the era may be in question, but gimme a break! That’s like finding out that while our government is mothballing F22 Raptors because of associated expenses, we secretly have a fleet of invisible flying saucers. Big hole in e story, to me.

    • Harry Mudd appeared in two original series episodes (“Mudd’s Women” and “I, Mudd”), neither of which contained Tribbles. The Tribbles were introduced in the original series by a trader named Cyrano Jones.

      • VEry good. I thought that was the case, but I can see why someone might misrecall Cyrano as another huckster sort.

  12. Section 31 has no physical facility, as said in ST:DS9 by Sloane. So they can make the reference to Section 31, but it has no physical facilities as shown in Enterprise and DS9.

  13. The “Ring Ship” was a famous background detail in the original movie, long ago. I don’t recall ever hearing it mentioned, discussed or named before. Seeing a name and some detail was surprising, and I’d like to know where that came from. Extended fiction? I assumed that when Enterprise showed us ring shapes in the Vulcan fleet that it made sense to assume the implication was that our early designs reflected their advanced knowledge, but I cannot recall any mention in film or tv of the ship.

    Side note: I like when Sahran sees the four Enterprise pics in Archer’s ready room, including a boat, shuttle and aircraft carrier. He says “you have commanded all of these?”

  14. Majel Barrett goes back further than most people realize with Trek. She played the first officer, “Number One” , in the original pilot for Star Trek, “The Cage.”. She was seen as masculine, cold, officious, and off putting, owing in part no doubt to the misogynistic times and in part to the total validity of those observations. She was canned, along with Jeffrey Hunter (Captain Pike), whose wife was his agent and much despised by Gene R. While Pike appeared on screen as a paralysed husk, the actor did not return. The pilot was repurposed into the two part episode The Menagerie as a series of flashbacks during a trial. Majel played the voice of nearly every computer in Trek (federation/Starfleet) since the original series, establishing a common tech element across ships, stations, planets and eras. They managed to shoe horn her into the last movie with a brief, single line of dialogue, but having since died we can imagine that the line she got in the new movie was recorded for another project. (Nurse Chapel and Lwaxanna Troi were pretty paper thin characters, but by the time DS9 came around the actress surprised many when she managed to find some subtlety, poigniance and non-comedic character traits in the role.)

    Khan may return, but comparing his Kirk-thwarted plan in the last movie to the long life of suffering Montalban’s Khan endured still leaves the “wrath” idea rather dampened. They should consider abandoning the idea of that aspect of his character since it doesn’t hold up in this reality very well.

    Enterprise references are much appreciated, but still pretty perfunctory and irrelevant. There was a perfect opportunity to have this be deeply connected to the lore of that show without advertising it to a potentially disinterested audience. The elements of history were all right there: the augments, the Klingons with the head ridges, Khan himself, and the Robocop actor who played the final and pivotal villain of that series… None of it recieved even a flicker of acknowledgment, or gave me any reason to suspect that the writers have ever seen that show at all. No mention of that crew or series would be needed to simply make use of crucially relevant historical data, such as the connection between smooth foreheads and augmented human DNA. Even a single throwaway line from a Klingon would have been fantastic. They could have said that they detected forbidden bio signatures, or some such thing, anything to show us the writers were paying attention and being thorough stewards of the franchise as a whole.

    While I would have personally been stoked for any relevance to the species/territories/etc of DS9, I assumed correctly that the references would be nearly exclusively TOS. At least section 31 got in there, however unnecessarily, but it feels like they wrote the whole thing before somebody said “we can say that those 31 guys did this!”. They managed to tell trek 9′s story of a dangerous admiral trying to get Picard killed for the sake of the greater good of the group without it being section 31 related. Glad they bothered, but they didnt try very hard with the non-TOS connections.

    Enterprise is the most easily used connection that they can make. Keep in mind that it is the ONLY set of stories that exists in this parallel reality. Both New Kirk and Kirk Classic have the exact same history book, and study the same missions of Archer and the NX-01. I bet that annoys folks who never learned to love that series. When the desk of models went by, I wasn’t sure which ships I saw because it was so fast! I thought that the warp 2 ships that Archer test piloted (First Flight, flashback to pre warp 5) might have been in there, but now I suspect it was just the Pheonix. This makes for the only solid reference to a Picard story (First Contact), other than the last song that is best known for being the TNG theme despite originating in the original movie. The 3 meter cockpit of the Pheonix was later used as the tiny pod that Archer and Trip Tucker pilot around their ship, and then remarried to a hull when the warp 2 ships were designed for the 2nd season ep. In all cases the interior and exterior are unmistakably the same cockpit, and while this may have been largely a money issue, seeing it again is a nice layered reference to me.

    A question: did anyone actually use the words “Prime Directive” or did they just talk about how Kirk was ignoring “directives”? Rather odd to dance around that particular reference… At one time it was rumored and suspected that Trek 9 would be be named Prime Directive instead of Insurrection. To make full sense of that would require a slight rewrite of a few lines, since the final movie made it clear that the hippy natives were “warp-savy” (among other absurd things) which would muddy up the premise of “non-interference” as being the crux of the matter…

  15. One thing people are forgetting from the original series that no one seems to be mentioning:

    The character of Chekhov was not introduced until after space seed in tos. It was later retconned that Chekhov was assigned to engineering at the time of he Enterprise’s encounter with the Botany Bay. So in this movie, Chekhov is assigned to engineering during the first encounter with Khan, in line with the retconned version of the Prime Universe of Star Trek.

    • Although I have heard of the retconning idea, I don’t know where it came from (fan fiction, comic books, the actor himself?), and I doubt it was official or ever intended in the least. Only now then is the notion part of actual canon, and ONLY in the new story! It was glaring when Khan said “I never forget a face”, and telling us he was on another part of the ship doesn’t explain how Khan recognized him unless you want to say he memorized the crew roster. Reasonable speculation, but we are way past the liklihood of it being less an an error. Also, Khan wore a necklace made from a belt buckle which was not introduced until the movie where they found him. Again, fixable, but presumably unintentionally inconsistent as versus misunderstood by the audience.

  16. Did anyone else see the TARDIS in the closing credits. My son and I both thought we saw it in a light flash in the upper left corner of the screen right when the music was switching over. But we only saw the movie once and haven’t been able to verify it.

    • Watched it tonight, thought I saw the Tardis, looking somewhat fuzzy, to the right of a spinning space tunnel looking similar to that used for the Tardis. But not from the left. Been searching easter eggs, but haven’t found it mentioned before your post.
      Was watching all those pretty things in space that have changed so much since what seems to have been painted Styrofoam balls…

  17. When Spock comes out firing from the trade ship on Kronos, the sounds of the phaser fire are the exact tones to, “Go, go, Power Rangers.”

  18. Hi your Movie is awesome I like it it is OK to me Kick he is great

  19. And yet the most obvious tip of the hat of all is the female voice of the computer on Spock’s ship. It’s remarkably similar to that of the one on-board the ship in Supernova.

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