In the first results of the Friday Night Fights, the original series fell short of the popular vote against the gang at Next Generation.
Last week the inaugural debut of Friday Night Fights saw two of the most iconic properties in the Star Trek canon against each other. Fans were pit against one another on Twitter to determine which of the iconic series was the true standards bearer of excellence, by and large, by the fanbase. No, it’s not a vote that included hundreds of millions of people, but it’s a nice segment of the Twitter audience of Redshirts Always Die and it does give us a fairly accurate look. The good folks at Next Generation beat the original 1966 series with a 55.4% to 44.6% of the vote.
While opinions are subjective and you could think that the Short Treks are the greatest series ever made, that’s ok here, what it does show you is who might just be seen as the true flagship brand.
Star Trek Enterprise launched three spin-off series, four franchise films, and the entire Trek universe that fans read and played in with a majority of the extended mediums. Most of the more heralded non-canon stories (or unconfirmed-canon) featured William Riker as captain of his own ship. The tails written about his adventures were long held in high regard by the fandom partly because the books had him on a ship full of familiar yet different Trek figures.
There’s no doubt the original series is important to Trek fandom. It’s what started it all. Why wouldn’t it be important? Yet, Next Generation was arguably bigger, better, more profitable and developed a visual style so efficient that it was used for nearly twenty years until the folks at Bad Robot took it over and changed the visual identity.
What the staff and cast did with Next Generation was so profound that it arguably spun off more than just Star Trek series, as most science fiction that went to television in the ’90s and after could be contributed as following the Next Generation formula. It’s pretty easy to see why Next Generation holds up among the fans, even if it’s not your personal favorite.