Star Trek Generation stars Jonathan Frakes and Brent Spiner hit the Vegas stage like rock stars. The pair began by clowning around and that continued for the most of their fifty minute appearance. The stage was set up for a concert later which inspired the pair to go into song, starting off with a rendition of ‘Volare.’ The comedy team also did some impressions including Patrick Stewart, with Spiner’s being especially spot-on, starting off “I am the toast of England right now….” Frakes then noted was the 20th anniversary of NextGen by reflecting on what it was like for him at his first Trek convention in Syracuse New York 20 years ago filled with ‘very very angry reticent Star Trek fans.’ The actor who played Riker on Trek’s return to television in 1987 recalled the crowd’s reaction to Trek’s first spinoff: “who the hell are these impostors…the bald guy from England, the cute one with the beard, and the Jewish android.” They also joked that it seems like there is an anniversary every year now (with TNG’s 20th following last years TOS 40th). Frakes then took a dig by saying “next year is the 20th anniversary of the best career choice ever made: Denise Crosby’s ‘I’d like to quit that show now, before it gets really popular.’”
During the Q&A Frakes was asked what he would have done differently if he had directed the last film Star Trek Nemesis (which he had earlier joked ‘had died’). Spiner interjected, saying to the questioner “don’t you mean ‘in what ways would it have been better?’” Riker started off by saying "It would have been more Next Generation and less of that wonderful English actor Thomas Hardy…good actor." He then rattled off a list of changes he would have made " We would have seen the wedding. We would have seen the consummation of the wedding. Blue Skies! Trombone. Wil Wheaton!" He also yelled out to the crowd: “Data IS NOT DEAD! Data lives Man!”
Looking forward to J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek
Frakes took it upon himself to mention the new feature film by asking Spiner “so has J.J. Abrams called you?” Spiner joked “his people called me,” but then followed up more seriously saying “I am personally hopefully about this…love J.J.” Frakes agreed saying “I am too. I am a big fan of Lost. He is a great story teller. I think this kid from Heroes [Zachary Quinto] is wonderful actor.” The pair then also agreed that Anton Yelchin (the apparent new Chekov) was a good choice. They also said they were looking forward to seeing Leonard Nimoy in the film and then appeared to jump on the Shatner bandwagon. Frakes asked “Isn’t Bill [Shatner] in it?.” When the crowd yelled out that he wasn’t Frakes replied back “Oh come on Bill will be in it.” Spiner agreed “at the end of the day Bill will be in it” and then summed up by saying “we are very hopeful…I think it’s going to be great.”
New Spinner Music
Spiner announced that he is doing a follow up to his debut musical album “Old Yellow Eyes is Back” the actor joked that he was finally ‘ready to lose some money’ and will be going into his personal studio to record in about a week. But the project seems serious, with Spiner stating it will be ‘a whole new concept.’ It is so serious that Spiner he turned down a guest spot on the show “Shark” to record.
All in all the Spiner and Frakes event was one of the reasons fans come to these shows. It was a lot of fun and when it was over the audience was clamoring for more. These two really could take their vaudeville routine on the road.