In 1966, the legendary futurist Gene Roddenberry created a science fiction-based television series called "Star Trek." While it lasted three seasons on NBC-TV, the show had its most promising finish its first season -- at number 52 for the year -- after such now-lesser- known series as "Iron Horse" and "Mr. Terrific." Despite letter writing campaigns that had assured its renewals for second and third seasons, "Star Trek" was canceled in 1969 because of its disproportionately high children and teen viewership which made it unattractive to network advertisers.
However, Roddenberry's compelling vision of the future has proven to hold a timeless appeal, when now -- 25 years later -- a new version has lured fans of the original and countless more. From network to syndication, from television to motion pictures, the "Star Trek" franchise has garnered one of the most loyal followings in entertainment history.
But success and popularity always comes at a price and is not beyond criticism. In 2006, the state of the franchise after the meager ratings and the eventual cancellation of Star Trek Enterprise was worrying. Star Trek had gained few young fans, despite the efforts to spice up the merchandise and, to lesser extent, the TV shows. The fan base was pretty much divided over the course that Star Trek has taken and should take, with the internet being an amplifier for the often detrimental controversies among Trekkers and with non-fans. This only added to the reputation of being weird that 'Trekkies' had gained in the general public, such as the cliché of overweight nerds in silly costumes who are not willing to participate in what most people think is the 'real life'.