Star Trek‘s Abandoned Gay Episode Gets New Life

Star Trek: Phase II, a fan-created Internet series that usually films original work, has completed shooting “Blood and Fire,” an episode once shelved by Star Trek: The Next Generation for its gay themes. The makers of Phase II claim killing the episode, which highlights both openly gay characters and an AIDS metaphor (and gay marriage!), was a disservice to Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry. Video below.

Gerrold wrote the story of contagion as a metaphor for the AIDS pandemic and the episode is dedicated to the gifted Star Trek alumni the world has lost to the disease: William Ware Theiss, Mike Minor and Merritt Butrick. It was also Gerrold’s intention to challenge the apathy of the public regarding the small sacrifice, yet far reaching power, of blood donations. Based on an original TNG script that was shelved because of the mention of a gay crewman aboard the Enterprise, “Blood and Fire” for Star Trek New Voyages: Phase II honors Gene Roddenberry’s vision of a non-judgmental future with the inclusion of a gay couple as part of the principle action of the story.

[flv:http://www.queerty.com/media/StarTrekGay.flv http://www.queerty.com/media/StarTrekGay.jpg 400 320]

More photos and video at AfterElton.

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28 Comments

  • ChicagoJimmy

    In related news, I just read that Majel Barrett Roddenberry, the widow of “Star Trek” creator Gene Roddenberry died. Sad.

  • EdWoody

    @ChicagoJimmy: Thankfully, she had the chance to complete her role as the computer voice for the new film before she passed. The film will no doubt be dedicated to her memory. RIP Majel.

    As for this clip, a number of non-canon ST fan-films and literature have featured LGBT characters, and made it natural and unforced. All of which makes the show creators’ lack of inclusivity all the more notable and egregious. There’s really no explanation or excuse in the 21st century aside from homophobia, which is a real shame considering ST’s basic message.

    On a baser note: Yay, hot gay skin scene!

  • Mimi

    I wonder what Gene and Majel would think of this new episode.

  • Chapeau

    To Boldly go where … No man has gone before!

    It’s about fucking time we saw some Gay loving on Star Trek.

  • tonybd1975

    What’s wrong with the shirtless guys tits?

  • Mike

    TNG did an episode where there was a planet with people of no gender. When the enterprise crew showed up one of the native started having feeling for riker and identified themselves as a woman which was forbidden on the planet. It was suppose to make up for the gay episode that never aired.

  • dgz

    10 bucks says Sulu comes out if there’s a sequel.

  • HYHYBT

    @Mike: Except, if I remember rightly, their version of ex-gay therapy was both mandatory and effective…

  • Ted B (Charging Rhino)

    It’s always been a black-mark against Roddenberry that NONE of his scifi-series or movies EVER addressed gays even-existing. While fearless about rocking the boat and finding creative metaphors for all sorts of social-ills and inequities, homosexuality was the forbidden third-rail…even after his death. I don’t know if this was a blindspot or homophobia on his part…and it’s been greatly debated without a conclusion,. Perhaps his background as a LA cop in the 1950’s, certainly a deeply homophobic institution at that time influenced him. Perhaps it was the “slash fiction” re-imagining Kirk and Spook as lovers that spooked him? And the disingenuous promises that “the next series”, or “the next movie” would be gay-inclusive got old about 15 years ago.

    It’ll be interesting to see if the new “restart” Star Trek movie continues Roddenberry’s narro-minded DADT vision, or “asks and tells”.

    …and no, Lt Hawk doesn’t count.

  • The Guy By The Door

    But they did do transsexualism in the whole symbiont in a guy now in a woman, thing.

    Interesting.

  • Mike

    The backplot for Lt Wolf (Star Trek:First Contact) apparently had him in a gay relationship – sadly never put to film.

    The Blood & Fire (part 1) is now out, excellent production and storyline.

  • John in CA

    Meh. Although I’m sorry to hear about Majel Barrett-Roddenberry’s death, I think the Star Trek franchise itself is a relic of the past. It was essentially a snapshot of what Americans thought the future would be like in the 1960s.

    Aside from the troubling homophobia and sexism, the Federation represents an extremely eurocentric vision of the future. It is basically a hegemonic empire bent on galactic domination through cultural imperalism.

    There’s plenty of physical diversity. But everyone quotes Shakespere (with a little Dante thrown in now and then), listens to classical music, and assumes traditional gender roles are absolute. I mean, the way Counselor Troi spews that old-school Freudian psychobabble, you’d think she got her psychiatry degree in the early 20th century.

  • EdWoody

    @Mike: As Ted already pointed out, it’s Hawk, not Wolf. And that has been claimed to be a urban legend by the creators of the film. Nevertheless, the spin-off lit writers picked up on it and the character has remained gay in the books. In fact, his widower is a main character in the Titan series.

  • Redheadguy

    I watched Part 1 of Blood & Fire this weekend. It was good. Bobby Rice did a great job and James Crawley does Kirk right. I love how Phase II improves with each episode and genuinely captures the essence of Star Trek. There’s been a lot of cast turnover, but the characters still ring true. Until Part 2 of Blood & Fire comes out next year, if you haven’t seen the previous episode , “World Enough and Time”, it’s awesome! Best Sulu story ever.

  • Chris Lord

    Thanks for this link. I’ve been snowbound for two days (in Portland, OR) and these episodes make this 50-something guy very, very happy. And not just the overtly gay episode, but the Chekhov episode was also excellent (and what a cutie the new guy is!)

  • romelbatallia

    It’s a good relationship between of them and quite suspense..

  • Jim

    Nothing you idiot, but there is something wrong with you

  • Jay

    Love it.

    …and damn Peter Kirk is hot. I’d go on a semi-suicidal away mission with him anytime.

    live long and prosper bitches.

  • Throwback

    This is too bad. I’m sure they will have eradicated homosexuality by the 23rd century. Whether it is an error in socialization or an error in gene transcription, homosexuality is still an error. With their advanced technology, I’m sure it will be a correctable one. Straight couples, after viewing the “gene scan” of their unborn son or daughter, will be informed that their child will be gay and they will opt to have their fetus’ orientation reassigned. You will be extinct.

  • MassEdge35

    I think it’s great that Phase II is getting all this press about their “gay” episode, but it was Hidden Frontier that first introduced substantive gay Star Trek characters. Check out their web site at http://www.hiddenfrontier.org/ I like Bobby Rice, but James Cawley simply cannot act. He only has that part because he owns the sets!

  • Mike K

    This is a disgrace. I had no warning that this was really “GAY TREK” and my 7 year old boy watched it with me. I found myself trying to explain why 2 men were in bed together kissing.

    This is flat out WRONG and the folks that let this be released with out any parental warnings should be prosecuted.

  • Varian Huddleston

    @Mike K:

    Really buddy? “Parental warnings”? People said the same thing about the episode where Captian Kirk(white guy)kisses Lt. Uhura (black woman). The same fear and bigotry was spued out even though in the episode the only reason why they kissed was because they were forced to do so(they censored back then as well). But the more things change the more they stay the same. Where as your father had to explain to you why people of different races were kissing, and you and to explain to your son why people of the same sex were kissing, your son will have to explain to your grandson why (in a world of genetic engineering)the girl wearing glasses was kissing the guy with a stutter on the holographic projector.

  • Masaichi

    @Mike: i saw that episode today, and i was thinking it seemed like a pretty obvious metaphor for gay rights.

  • James

    OMG that was Sick!!! Whats Wrong with these people. Gay people try to make themselves feel like they are in the right by saying anyone who speaks out against gayness is a bigot or a homophobes. Are you foreal??? We really need to talk about why men being with other men is not normal?? Are we as a people that forgone and warped that we need to even disccuss this?? You guys cant really tell that being gay is wrong? Foreal??? You do wrong and try to make everyone else except that what you are doing is right.

    By the way. Men who like women and vice-versa ARE homophobes duh!!! We are because we men like women and do not understand how any man can want to be with another man. Makes no sense to us. This nothing to do with human rights or discrimination at all. They use these words to get sympathy. And gays make themselves look like total idiots trying to justify being gay!

    So as long as there are normal people born. There will always be this issue because its just not right. Gay is wrong period. Just because you have an urge doesn’t mean that is the right thing to be doing.

    You don’t get our disgust?? Then think about pedophiles and bestiality. Gross isn’t it? Thats the way we feel about so called homosexuals. Why you ask? Is it is because it is so unnatural???????? or should we all accept that as well? Should we just be like hey everybody can do whatever they feel??? No that would cause pure chaos.

  • James

    @Ted B (Charging Rhino): Should they have talked about bestiality too? No. So why would you gay stuff in? Its not like its just part of nature. It is unnatural. You guys are just trying make it work.

  • Murdoc

    @Mike K: Typical Christian fundie bullshit that I’ve come to expect from most North Americans, along with only watching older TV shows from the 1950’s and 1960’s-in fact, kind of like what I’ve seen at certain websites devoted to TV on DVD-what else is new?

  • Jason

    The episode was really well done. It is sad that they haven’t had any gay characters on any of the regular shows over the years. I did read somewhere that Gene Roddenberry did agree to put a gay character in TNG, but that was as his health was declining and he was out of the picture for making any more decisions for the show. I hear rumor that the sequel to the J.J. Abrams Star Trek film may yet go boldy where no Star Fleet officer has gone before, but no confirmation on that yet.

  • Varian

    1) I believe that there is value in all beliefs that do not cause harm. Harm to the people that do not believe in those same beliefs or harm to the very people that do.

    2) My belief that I have a right to a job does not cause you harm. My beliefs will not make your employer fire you if they suddenly discover you are a heterosexual woman or a man.

    3) My belief that I have a right to companionship does not cause you harm. If I receive the same tax codes, inheritance rights, visitation rights, benefit rights and custody rights because of that companionship, I repeat, it does not cause you harm. My beliefs do not force you to seek the same type of companionship I believe in.

    4) My beliefs will not make strangers want to beat you, rape you or kill you and your companion and then seek validation for those barbaric acts in my beliefs.

    5) I believe it is important to make people aware of the harm that their beliefs cause inadvertently or directly. I believe it is important to stop harm form being done to people no matter what their beliefs are.

    6) My beliefs do not make children want to commit suicide because of the harm my beliefs directly caused them or harm my beliefs validated, and then condemn the children for the very suicide my beliefs are responsible for.

    7) I believe in the possibility and faith in an afterlife. I believe that when faith in an afterlife is so blind that it causes you to not care about the quality of life in the here and now, or not take care of the planet that we are on, is the greatest harm of all.

    Varian Huddleston: 8:40pm 10/10/2012

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