Category Archives: skiffy

Ravings of a 12 Year Old Geek

Okay, this is embarrassing.  But I live by a credo of making all my flaws public, so here it goes.  I am, as all know, an unabashed Star Trek fan.  I can go on and on about why I think the original Trek series was important for the quality of modern Western society.  But that gets boring fast.

Back in the late 70s, the cast of the original series was still young, and many of us held out hope that they would return to the TV screen.  As it turns out, Star Trek: Phase II was in the works (though we wouldn’t know about it for years to come, and then it would manifest as Star Trek: The Next Generation).  When Phase II was discontinued, its pilot was instead turned into Star Trek: The Motion Picture.

Hot on the heels of the success of Star Wars just a couple of years before, the Trek movie had a selling point that I adored (but that the general movie-going audience detested), that this was a science fiction movie in which not a single battle would be fought.  It was entirely a cerebral journey; and that’s why I loved the old Trek.

The rebirth of Trek briefly created a string of media spin-offs, including a short-lived newspaper cartoon series (which was really quite good, as I recall) and some novels.  But the new iconography, which included bumps on Klingons’ heads, wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea.

So there I was, about 12 years old, deliriously happy that Trek had come back into my life, but thirsty for more.  This wasn’t the era of endless spin-offs, reruns, and web series.  All we had was one movie and the original series.  So what did I do? I drew my own comics.

They are crap.  And they’re supposed to be funny, with 12 year old boy humour.  So yes, I am horribly embarrassed by this. But I’ve located two of the comic strips that I drew more than 30 years ago.  And here they are.  Don’t laugh!


strek 1 strek 2

Oh, Leave the Android Alone

I saw Prometheus last night, the new Alien prequel.  My review of the film is over at, along with my sort-of obituary of Ray Bradbury.

I won’t say more about it here, except to add that I should have known something was foul when I read an interview with the actor Logan Marshall-Green, the poorly cast archaeologist in the film.  In Prometheus, Marshall-Green’s character is a real dick to David, the fascinating android played by Michael Fassbender.  Marshall-Green had apparently lobbied for inclusion of that aspect of his character, arguing thusly:


” It’s something I haven’t seen in science fiction, which is a sense of racism or bigotry towards androids and synthetic life. “


Whaaaaa?  In science-fiction, bigotry toward synthetic life is a tired, cliched trope.  You don’t need to look any further than a certain film made my the very same director helming the movie Marshall-Logan is presently acting in:  Ridley Scott’s Bladerunner, which is all about society’s marginalization of its synthetic human slave class.  Or how about an earlier entry in the franchise of the very movie he’s acting in, Aliens, in which the synthetic man is verbally abused by several real humans.  Or how about a score of episodes of Star Trek: TNG, in which the android Data must constantly advocate for his civil rights against a society that refuses to see him as a person?  Or how about pretty much any Isaac Asimov book?  The Caves of Steel is ripe with active human bigotry against robots.

Jeebus.  With such ignorance of the state of science fiction, I should not have been surprised that Prometheus offered up a house of cliches with nothing new or interesting to offer.