Wil Wheaton shares a technobabble story at Star Trek: Mission Chicago.
It’s no surprise that Wil Wheaton’s character, Wesley Crusher, was more disliked than liked on Star Trek: The Next Generation. Many fans will say it was because of how he seemed to have more knowledge than his superior officers and how he saved the Enterprise when those same officers couldn’t. And, according to a report from Cinemablend, that dislike extended into the writing community that had control of Wesley’s lines.
At Star Trek: Mission Chicago, Wheaton shared how The Next Generation would utilize people from the sciene community to assist with the technological jargon. One grad student, who really didn’t like Wesley, gave Wheaton the hardest technobabble he could come up with simply because of that dislike.
"Wesley’s like, ‘Yo, this is a K-fold contravariant Riemannian tensor field, and you can’t possibly understand it.’. . .That was impossible for me to remember. One, it doesn’t exist, it’s a thing that somebody made up. It always confused me back then. If it’s a thing that’s made up, and it doesn’t exist, why does it matter if I say Ryemannian instead of Riemannian? It should not matter. . .Well, if you’re me, you’ll find out years later that there was a guy that was a grad student at Cal Tech. He was doing some work for Next Generation he was kind of writing technical dialogue. . .This kid was working with the science advisor. He found out he was going to get to write a technobabble line for Wesley. This guy, as most men in 1990, was like, ‘I don’t like Wesley.’ So he deliberately wrote the most difficult, complicated, nonsensical thing he could come up with to force me to say."
Wil Wheaton finds the humor in the story now.
Many years later, the tech-writer, having had a change of heart, managed to track Wheaton down to apologize. He wasn’t sure if Wheaton would even remember what he’d done, but the actor assured him, it wasn’t a story he was likely to forget.
"This dude tracked me down in the late 2000s and said, ‘You probably don’t remember this, but I’m so sorry.’ I was like, ‘Buddy, I’ve been telling this story since the day it happened. This is a thing I absolutely remember!"
We’ve always known those difficult lines on Star Trek: The Next Generation certainly weren’t by Wheaton’s choice, as he didn’t write the scripts. But now we know, when he came across as smarter than most of the other characters aboard the ship, it’s because he had technical writers like this that gave him a leg up, so to speak.