Overused parts of Star Trek canon hurts the fan experience
Five different series of Star Trek are currently in production yet it is surprising that some parts of older canon show up in almost every show. This isn’t a new problem for Star Trek, but now as the franchise is trying to expand its offerings to new television audiences, Paramount must be careful to provide new canon elements for the audience or face criticism that they have overused the same elements thus disappointing fans and limiting the writers’ own creativity.
One particular example of this is the Klingons. While they were created to be the main antagonists of The Original Series, they only had a handful of appearances then a slight redesign in the TOS cast movies and roles in some of the movies. Even so, they were not the main antagonists of the overall TOS movies. Worf was part of the main cast in The Next Generation and thus began the snowballing of Klingon plotlines as they began to take over a large portion of the franchise, from Picard helping Worf try to regain the honor of the House of Mogh to a literal regicide and political coupe in Deep Space Nine.
Star Trek tends to overuse certain elements
The series-produced post-Kelvin timeline films continue this, reinventing the Klingons multiple times to the point there are multiple Klingon looks that co-exist all at once so that almost anything can go for Klingon biology. Memory Alpha has identified over one hundred fifty different episodes or movies that feature Klingons in the franchise as of this article. It could be argued this means the Klingons are overused in the franchise since any Klingon plot must be fact-checked against extensive canon that fans know very well. If the Worf spinoff gets greenlit, this may help the franchise overall as by focusing Klingon plotlines into one series, other series can focus on other species that are not overused.
Compare this to other species that are less utilized, such as Pakleds. Pakleds were originally introduced in TNG as the antithesis of many alien species Starfleet encountered—not that intelligent but very physically strong. They only had one appearance in TNG, but appeared more frequently in DS9 and Lower Decks. The latter in particular pushed the Pakleds into greater prominence as their society was further explored, showing their home planet and government structure. Since the Pakleds are still much less prominent than Klingons—only twenty-six appearances as of this article—this gives writers the freedom to explore their culture and create canon without worrying about having to retcon or work around the established canon.
By focusing on the overused species and plot elements, writers of Star Trek end up working themselves into a corner as they must work with multiple points of canon fans are very familiar with. Whereas focusing on underutilized species and plot elements opens up avenues for authors to explore new themes and not worry about decades of intense canon.