James Kirk is back in Star Trek but one other original series idea is coming back too.
It was announced this week that Willliam Shatner and Chris Pine will have another name added to the hall of James T. Kirk portrayers. Star Trek: Strange New Worlds will see former Vampire Diaries star Paul Wesley take up the golden mantel of James Tiberius Kirk for the new show.
Strange New Worlds is a prequel to the Original Series, while also serving as a spinoff of Star Trek: Discovery. It will feature Captain Christopher Pike and Spock, two key figures in James Kirks’ life heading into his time as captain on the Enterprise.
Yet, we’re not getting “Captain Kirk”, no, we’re getting a different Kirk. A Kirk that isn’t even assigned to the Enterprise just yet.
A still image of Wesley’s run as Kirk features him in the Starfleet commander gold attire while wearing a unique-looking badge. That badge, while unknown in the moment, seems to suggest a return of a classic Star Trek concept; different ships having different badges.
The Delta Symbol that Star Trek uses now wasn’t always the universal Starfleet emblem, but instead the specific emblem for the Enterprise. With the new emblem being seen in these images, it’s safe to say that this series will bring back that concept, although we don’t know how or why just yet.
USS Republic-era James Kirk debuting for Strange New Worlds?
Some on the internet have suggested that this will be the USS Republic-era of James Kirk. Kirk served on the Republic when he was an ensign, and it seems likely that this is the direction the show is going to go, at least to start.
It should be noted that this Kirk is supposed to be a younger version than even the one we saw in Star Trek 2009, but Wesley is actually only two years younger than Chris Pine is. Meaning that despite this supposedly being a younger Kirk, the two current actors are about the same age.