It has been a month since Paramount released a full image of their new USS Enterprise, sparking much discussion. But for the last two years there have been numerous sightings of a ‘new Enterprise’ which usually turned out to be mistaken reports based on designs from Gabriel Koerner, a Trek fan featured in Trekkies and professional CGI artist. Today Koerner has decided to weigh in on the new ‘real’ Enterprise.
Backstory on the most mistaken Enterprise
Gabriel alerted TrekMovie to his new blog post on MySpace titled, ‘The New Starship Enteprise: Gabe’s Take‘. Korner discusses the history of his ‘Koernerprise’ which started as an entry in a "Ships of the Line" calendar before he posted some updates to it on his own website two years ago. Koerner is genuinely flattered that his design was so often considered good enough to be the offical new ship, noting:
It really, really, really means a lot to me that what I felt was just fan wank was deemed professional enough by many people to be a viable and believable enough to be the "real" Enterprise. Not everyone loved my treatment of her, but I have no gripe with that.
One of the angles of Koerner’s reimagined USS Enterprise
Koerner is such a Trekkie that he is still making tweaks and refinements to this day. He included a new version in his blog, which he calls a ‘more retro, smoother variant’
New ‘retro’ version of Koerner’s Enterprise
Thoughts on the new Enterprise and it’s designer
The new USS Enterprise was designed by veteran artist Ryan Church, who has worked on The Star Wars Prequels, Transformers and the upcoming James Cameron film Avatar. Church even made a comment here at TrekMovie.com about his new design and some of the reaction to it. Koerner notes that he and Ryan ‘threw some similar ideas into the mix’ and he also has a word for critics of Church’s work, saying "no one attack the artistic merits or design abilities of Ryan Church if you do not favor his design." Koerner points out that when working on a major film, final designs are based on what the producers want in the end and "we don’t even know how closely it represents the designer’s own taste."
First promotional image of the USS Enterprise in JJ Abrams "Star Trek"
Regarding the ship itself, Koerner says it is "really, really hard" to critique it because he wanted to be involved personally and he is "not arrogant enough to think that the film is any less" without his contribution. But he does weigh in, with pros and cons.
On the pro side Koerner writes:
I like how clean it is, how uncluttered by greebles and decals while still retaining scale. If anything it adds to the scale. I like that it got away from the VERY RED bussards VERY BLUE BLUE STUFF of TNG era ships (and NX-01). I like the blades on the engine
I like the shapes of the individual components: The turbine-esque nacelles, the reinforced neck, and the nuevo-TMP saucer. But the engines and the saucer look a bit foreign from one another. I like the deflector dish. Its a cleaver way to both be a detached dish with a spike, and pay homage to the TMP blue glowing dish as well.
On the con side he notes:
It’s very front heavy. I see the rationale of putting the mass of the engine hull that much further forward. Ryan pushed the neck back and has it sweep back much further, and by taking the engine hull and squeezing it like a half full tube of toothpaste to put all the weight up front, he’s admittedly got a balance between engine hull and neck that’s a lot sturdier than the classic in its distribution of mass. I just don’t find that balance as aesthetically pleasing. I’m not big on how the struts taper in at the top and that they mount almost at the very front of the engines. And with so much up front, the engine hull has a long skinny tail that makes the engines seem like they’re overwhelming the struts.
But in the end Koerner feels he will "come to like" the ship and buy the model kits as well.
New USS Enterprise as seen in the trailer
For the full blog, see Koerner’s MySpace.