Many cultures celebrate what are called Days of Thanks or Harvest Festivals, from Erntedank of Germany to Thanksgiving in Canada and the United States. This Thursday, the US celebrates its Thanksgiving Day with parades, time off from school, holiday decorations, and most especially with food. Today TrekMovie takes a look at some of Star Trek’s greatest feasts.
Mmm Mmm Trek
We at Trekmovie agree that food shared with family and friends is the best feature of Thanksgiving. Because Star Trek represents the real human experiences as much as it does future science and alien worlds, it is no surprise that big banquets and shared meals are a staple of the various episodes and movies. Many of the dinner scenes from Star Trek are used to show cultural differences and have good characters moments. While Trekmovie staff and readers cannot all sit down for a meal together to express thanks for our shared friendship and love of Trek, we could offer the next best thing. Here is a list of some of the best food moments in Star Trek history as way to say thank you to fellow fans around the world.
MOVIES: Klingons come to dinner
(Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country)
Perhaps no other meal time scene in Star Trek has the symbolism and meaning than when Kirk and the crew have the Klingons over for dinner on the Enterprise. The meal itself was impressive from its variety of foods from both cultures, but it was the conversations that were the most delicious. The themes discussed during the dinner scene echo through the entire film and is an important setting for the movie. The scene beautifully illustrates the differences, yet also the commonalities, of the Klingon Empire and the Federation. From a character point of view, Captain Kirk and Chang get into a verbal confrontation (with Kirk delivering his debate-winning line of "Earth. Hitler. 1938.") Meanwhile, Spock and Gorkon try to salvage the dinner with diplomacy. The table itself is colorful with blue fish and bright flowers. Although it was on a starship and full of exotic foods and aliens, anyone with large extended family gathering for a meal can relate to some of the tensions at Kirk’s table.
TOS: Ambassadors Reception
("Journey to Babel")
What is not to love about the "Journey to Babel" dinner scene? It has everything that makes TOS unique and fun. It has weirdly shaped and colorful fruit, and ice cubes that look like play dough. It was aliens galore, including little copper colored men, Tellarites, Andorians, and Vulcans (including Spock’s father). The scene has great banter between Spock and McCoy and we learn much about the Vulcan culture.
TNG: Kurn’s dinner
("Sins of the Father")
Down in Whoville, Picard carves the roast beast! This is another culture clash dinner scene that also reveals something about the characters, and it is one where the food takes center stage. Especially good is Kurn’s dismissal of the food as well prepared yet not very tasty, as he picks up the roast beast and studies it. It also good to see characters following traditions such as the "father" carving the meal, and its nice that it is Picard in that role. The setting is vibrant, with a great floral display (good thing Evorian Regent Cuzar from Star Trek: Insurrection wasn’t there).
DS9: Jake brings a date to dinner
"She is a Dabo Girl. She’s dating my son. I don’t want to like her." While not a lavish event, this dinner scene shows that a shared meal can bring people together. Ben Sisko, the most culinary of Trek’s captains, invites Jake’s girlfriend Mardah to dinner where he made Creole shrimp with Mandalay sauce which he said "has bite to it." Through the meal and conversation, Ben learns more about Mardah, and to his surprise, things about his son, including that Jake likes to write. A great scene with nice father and son moments that shows that a good meal can break through barriers and get people to understand each other better, and what could be more Star Trek than that? And besides, who wouldn’t want a dinner prepared by Ben Sisko?
VOY: Dinner of lost civilizations
("Year of Hell, Part 2")
A great scene from one of Voyager’s best moments, this dinner shows some good conflict between Tom Paris and Chakotay, and complicates the villain Annorax. The buffet features foods from many different worlds, some lost because of the Krenim timeship. The use of the Malkothian culture’s drink by Annorax to explain his mission is excellent, as is the use of the drink to solidify his and Chakotay’s cooperation.
ENT: Archer, Trip and T’Pol’s first meal
It is the character interaction and moments that make this a great scene, not the sparse and intimate table setting. Like TUC, this scene helps to show the differences between aliens, here between Humans and Vulcans. It also establishes the conflicts between Archer and Trip with T’Pol. We are reminded in this scene that Vulcans are vegetarians, and T’Pol’s artistically arranged salad is in stark contrast to Trip’s steaks. The moment where T’Pol cuts her breadstick in half and uses a fork, while Trip is using his hands to eat, is classic.
And from all of us at TrekMovie.com, have a great Thanksgiving
Thanks to Trekcore.com for the images.