Articles by Bill Watters

Review: Star Trek Continues’ Come Not Between the Dragons

The Star Trek Continues crew has come out with their sixth episode, Come Not Between the Dragons. STC as a production continues to battle it out with New Voyages for setting the bar on production quality, and this episode is no different in that respect. It’s a more intimate episode, with the action effectively only on board the Enterprise, which expresses the level of confidence that the writers are putting in their cast to carry the episodes rather than on extended SFX or away missions.



REVIEW: Starship Farragut: The Crossing

The crew of the Farragut has returned to spacedock with The Crossing, their fifth installment in their long-running series. Green-lit after a successful Kickstarter campaign, which broke the $20,000 mark out of a $15,000 target, it’d been in the post-production phase for just over a year. Initially premiering back in February at the Farpoint Convention, it’d come out to strong word of mouth and positive comments and so we’d been excited to check it out. Continuing with the ever-popular Mirror, Mirror storyline, they expanded both on the TOS episode as well as bringing in elements from their own earlier Farragut episode, For Want of a Nail.


Fan film Star Trek – Horizon takes the Enterprise-era out for an adventure

After a successful Kickstarter in 2014 (they more than doubled their $10,000 target by taking in $22,600), writer/director Tommy Kraft and his team have finally delivered a fan film that’s pretty darned good. Their backer community had been a bit worried with the delays (the original release date had been set for December of 2014), but it would seem the wait was well worth it.


Syfy’s Face Off tackles Star Trek

  We’re into the ninth season of Syfy’s Face Off, which continues to be the network’s highest rated unscripted series. This week’s make-up theme is Star Trek, so I was eager to see where they took the challenge. The episode is in the series typical two challenge format, however this time the way they tie it back to Star Trek is that in the first round the contestants have to create an alien design based on a different background assigned to each person, and in the second they’re tasked to update it for a Next Generation era feel.


Trekonderoga celebrates Star Trek this Labor Day weekend

Star Trek fans looking for an experience uniquely geared for them need look no further than what’s beaming in to Ticonderoga, New York, from September 4th – 6th. The new convention, Trekonderoga, will be celebrating all things Trek. In attendance will be an array of guests who were part of Star Trek both in front and behind the cameras. In addition to the more traditional celebrity aspect of a convention, they will also be hosting tours of actual sets, conducting make-up workshops, and special episode screenings with creators adding commentary along the way.


Propworx VI auction arrives at Star Trek Las Vegas

Propworx will be holding the next installment of their Star Trek Auction series this weekend as part of Creation Entertainment’s Star Trek Las Vegas convention. With interest in Star Trek as keen as ever by both serious collectors as well as first time buyers, and happening in the midst of Creation’s flagship annual event, bidding is expected to be fast and furious this weekend.



Star Trek: Phase II – “Mind Sifter”

A few weeks ago the Balboa theater in San Francisco hosted a screening of New Voyages’s episode Mind Sifter. With a number of their cast and crew in attendance for both a pre-screening meet and greet and a Q&A session with director Mark Edward Lewis, SFX Supervisor Pony Horton, and actors Jeff Bond (Dr. Leonard McCoy) and Becky Wood (Dr. Hamlin). As the audience filtered into the theater in the half hour or so leading up to the screening it became evident that people weren’t just locals to the Bay Area. Many people had come in from from 100 miles and more to see the episode on a big screen.


And the winners are: The Star Trek Independent Fan Film Awards

This weekend saw TrekTrax (newly redubbed Treklanta) host the very first Star Trek Independent Fan Film Awards and the results are in. It continues to be a great growth year with more amazing productions coming into the field and the existing group maturing and continuing to set the bar for the rest. Before we get to the winners, let’s take a moment to send a shout out to the full listing of the 2015 nominees: Star Trek Continues Project: Potemkin Star Trek: Rendezvous Star Trek Secret Voyage Starship Exeter Star Trek: Reliant Star Trek Natures Hunger Starship Valiant Star Trek: Prelude to Axanar Starship Farragut Star Trek New Voyages: Phase II




The Award-Winning “Star Trek: The Continuing Mission” audio drama returns

With the world of video exploding, it’s exciting to see that the audio drama format is still alive and well. After a nearly three year hiatus, the cast and crew of the USS Montana have returned for an entirely new episode, Cathedral in the Void, available from the Continuing Mission Website. During it’s initial “season” of six episodes released between the winter of 2007 and the fall of 2009, the series amassed a listenership of tens of thousands, garnering critical acclaim and reviewed on CNN. We had even named it, “Audio Drama of the Year,” in 2008. Series producer Sebastian Prooth is proud of the series use of a ship and storyline set outside of the established series canon, but still able to weave it into the same universe. The story follows the adventures of a Federation crew plucked out of the 23rd century (from around the time of the events in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn) and re-emerging in the 24th, just prior to the beginning of Star Trek: The Next Generation. “The benefits of working in an audio format is that we’ve been able to utilize technology to bring together talented actors from around the world without having to physically bring them together,” said Prooth. The bulk of the original audio was completed back in 2011, with only a few characters’ dialogue remaining. Finally, it was an offer by Canadian fan and audio engineer, Matheiu Blondin, to help assemble the episode that restarted the momentum. That addition to the team, in tandem with Prooth’s desire to rejuvenate the series for an audience of today. This new episode summons up the creations of HP Lovecraft, the father of modern horror, who consigned his unspeakable creations to the farthest reaches of the final frontier. Most call them aliens. Some know them as the Elder Gods. In the time before time, they ruled the Earth. Now, the only thing that can stop their return is Captain Edwards and the crew of the USS Montana. The episode is well paced and is immersive as an audio experience, and easy to listen to (many effect-laden audio dramas become cluttered, which isn’t the case with Cathedral.  The actor’s performances are solid and not over the top. The cast is headlined by Captain Paul Edwards (Scott Martineck), Commander Darius Locke (Stephen Perkins), Lt. Commander Jack McGuire (Patrick McCray), and Lt. Commander Thomas Plummer (Nathan Wolfenbarger). This new episode is in part an experiment to see if there’s still an audience for Star Trek in an audio drama format. They have already been drafting ideas for future episodes, but before they proceed they want to see what number of listens this episode receives. Personally I’m a big fan of listening to audio format fiction, as I use them to pass the time on the daily work commute. Full format audio plays however have become too rare, with World War Z having been an interesting hybrid between a full cast and straight audiobook. It’s refreshing to see something in the tradition of the classic Orson Wells broadcast of the War of the Worlds being created anew today.


Fan Films: “Prelude to Axanar” is poised to begin production

What do Richard Hatch (Battlestar Galactica), Michael Hogan (Battlestar Galactica, Teen Wolf, Supernatural), JG Herztler (DS9, Voyager, Enterprise), and Gary Graham (Alien Nation, Voyager, Enterprise) have in common? Their Star Trek: Prelude to Axanar project, which has now blown past the $50,000 mark on Kickstarter. The latest entrant into the flourishing Star Trek fan film space, Prelude is being filmed in early May in Los Angeles as a short film which will lead into their full length Star Trek: Axanar feature film slated to begin production later this year. Prelude takes place some 13 years before TOS and explores the story leading up to the Battle of Axanar. The Klingon Empire and Federation find themselves engaged in a pitched battle over the planet Axanar, leading both to the bring of all out war.