The new Star Trek movie is not easy to classify. The film is not a traditional prequel like Star Wars Episode III, nor is it a traditional ‘canon reboot’ like Batman Begins. Some have wondered how the new film fits in with the Trek universe, and what affect it has on the extended universe. A new page and graphic on the Star Trek Online MMORPG official site gives a pretty good explanation. [movie spoilers obviously]
On Trek Timelines
For the purposes of the Star Trek canon, the new Star Trek movie could probably best be classified as a sequel to Star Trek Nemesis. The 10th Trek film takes place in the year 2379. Although the new Star Trek movie starts with the destruction of the USS Kelvin in 2233, the events described in the memories of both Spock and Nero are from 2387 or eight years after Star Trek Nemesis.
In the new Star Trek movie, Nero goes back in time from 2387 and creates an alternative timeline. Time travel and altering the past are nothing nothing new for Star Trek (“City on the Edge of Forever”, “Yesterdays Enterprise”, “Year of Hell”, etc), but what is different is that by the end of the film, the alternative timeline was not ‘reset.’ Some fans have thought this new timeline as writing over or erasing the original (or ‘prime’) timeline. However in interviews with TrekMovie (and others), as well as in multiple online discussions, writer Roberto Orci has made it clear that in their Star Trek universe, the incursions of Nero and Spock created an alternate timeline, which will coexist with the ‘prime’ timeline (not unlike the ‘Mirror Universe’).
This means that stories can still be told in the prime universe at any time, including after Spock and Nero leaving and the destruction of Romulus. The project this has the most immediate affect on is Star Trek Online, the massive multiplayer game set in the 25th century due to be released in 2010. In order to clarify things, the people at Cryptic have created a special section of their official site, which includes the following chart explaining it all.
STO graphic shows two timelines coexisting
(click to enlarge)
That page notes:
So how can the movie and STO be in different realities? When working on Star Trek, screenwriters Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman referenced the theory of quantum mechanics, which allows for the simultaneous existence of parallel timelines and universes. Parallel universes are self-contained, separate realities that exist as a consequence of different choices and outcomes. This concept was explored in the TNG episode "Parallels," in which there were thousands of alternate timelines (and thousands of Enterprises!). It also is seen in the Mirror Universe, which is a darker take on the world of the Federation.
There are many, many stories to tell in the prime universe. The fallout of the destruction of Romulus and the upheaval that causes in the Alpha and Beta quadrants creates storytelling opportunities that we at Cryptic didn’t even imagine when we first began working on STO. We’re excited by the possibilities, and fans should be as well. The best is yet to come.
Stories in both
Although the above post and graphic are related to the Star Trek Online MMORPG, they are applicable to all of the Trek franchise. That graphic may be on the STO site, but it is essentially the official CBS and Paramount position regarding the new movie and its affect on the original timeline.
This is especially important to both the comics from IDW and the books from Pocket Books. In fact the Star Trek comics have already dipped their toe into this territory. The entire Star Trek Countdown comic book series takes place in the prime timeline of 2387 telling the story of Spock and Nero and how they came together to fall into a black hole (sending them back in time). But the final two pages of Star Trek Countdown show Picard and Capt. Data on board the Enterprise E, making it clear that the Prime timeline continued on, even after Spock and Nero went back in time.
Picard and Data still there after Nero left
For their part, Pocket Books has been telling post-Nemesis stories for years now, but so far their most recent books have only gone as far as 2381, or six years prior to Spock and Nero falling into the black hole. Pocket has already announced plans to continue their 24th century with the upcoming ‘Typhon Pact’ stories and they will likely continue beyond that, but by the time they get to 2387 they will just have to deal with the destruction of Romulus (just like Crytpic has done for the STO backstory).
It should also be expected that both IDW and Pocket Books (and a potential future game licensee) will also be doing stories in the new timeline (which has no official name, although Memory Alpha, the Star Trek wiki, is now referring to it simply as ‘Alternate Reality‘ based on Uhura’s line in the film about how Nero’s incursion had created an alternate reality). This gets even more complicated in that some aspects of the new Star Trek movie could be told from the perspective of the prime timeline, most notably the USS Kelvin and its crew (Robau, George and Winona Kirk, etc). As for stories set before 2233 (the time Nero showed up), they would apply to both timelines (as does the entire Star Trek Enterprise series).
What happened to the Kelvin in the prime timeline?
So for the foreseeable future the world of Star Trek’s extended universe will just be a bit more complicated. Starting in 2010 and beyond we should expect books, comics and games from both timelines. And when the time comes for CBS to consider a new TV show, they will have a choice to make, which does not preclude them coming up with yet another universe/timeline.
We live in interesting times.
It’s interesting how the main timeline stays intact after Nero messes up the past.
It doesnt matter which timeline,universe the stories are set in bring it on into this universe onto the big screen,small screen ane books and comics.Keep it coming.Maybe a Prime Universe Sequel series to TNG combining Voyager and DS9 and let young Kirk and co boldly go.
Keep it coming….
Do IT..Do IT..Do It….
So Kirk becomes Captain of the Enterprise Earlier!!!
I thought the aberation was mainly fixed due to older Spock getting the original crew back together by the end of film.
So am I the ONLY person who saw this film and DIDN’T need a flow chart to understand that the original “Prime” universe exists AS WELL AS the “new” universe?
I blame “Back to the Future”.
Fascinating. I see Bryan Fuller is again making noises about wanting to helm a new series, but he wants to do it on the “Alternate Reality” on another ship.
I wonder how Paramount and CBS will work together on this. It seems inevitable that CBS will want to exploit Trek’s rebirth
I could be mistaken, but isn’t 2233 the year of the Romulan Ale Bones gives Kirk in Search for Spock?
And as I told before: They always can try to restore the original timeline or go on in they own new timeline – or – or – or…
The original timeline is there. It’s not going anywhere, and I hope continue to see the “prime” universe in some fashion.
It’s a mistake for them to refer to everything in the new Trek as ‘alternate timeline’ in my opinion. In some way it distances it and treats it as something less ‘real’. I mean, given it’s the main film franchise timeline, if anything it’s now the ‘prime timeline’. ‘New Universe’ would be a better designation.
Also, given all the buggering up of the timeline committed by the various crews in the TV shows and bearing in mind that such behaviour must have been widespread in Starfleet, the Klingon Empire and Romulan Empire let alone the all the other races in the universe, there’s no reason to assume that the past of the new universe is the same as what’s been seen on TV and past films.
To my mind, this is the opportunity to shunt Khan Singh. the Eugenics Wars, WWIII and so on further into our future. After all, Star Trek’s supposed to represent a possible future for us, not be some separate fictional universe with a different history from us!
Timeline, timeline… There’s no time like the present, Janeway would say.
I love the new movie, i love the old series, i didn’t like ‘Nemesis’ and ‘Enterprise’ (i still don’t), but in this presented timeline ‘Nemesis’ can become quite interesting:
when the alternate timeline from the new movie passes beyond the ‘Nemesis’ point (which will take at least 6 more movies or so, i hope) chances áre that Data still functions fully. We can expect a lot of new surprises in this new timeline, which are very exciting to explore.
Once again: this is IMHO 100% pure and true Star Trek, fits perfectly in the universe we all love so much and can do things (bring back actors for cameo’s) that fans had given up on.
Thanks to Orci, Kurtzman, Abrams and TPTB, we can once again fully enjoy the Star Trek franchise and the future looks promising. Gene (Roddenberry) would be very proud.
I don’t believe in the alternate universe scenario. To me there is only one time stream and if you change what came before, you alter what is to come. I don’t buy this ‘eat your cake and have it too’ business. Either you ate it, or you didn’t.
Do you then not recognise the mirror universe episodes from TOS/DS9/ENT? Or “Parallells”? Because they were presented, and they were canon. So it’s already part of Trek.
But so was “Yesterday’s Enterprise” – and it was clearly established that once the Enterprise C was tossed off to the future (hence changing the past), EVERYTHING changed.
Example no. 2 – First Contact: the Borg head back to the sequential past of the prime time-line and VOILA – the present’s been altered (Earth is instantaneously completely assimilated).
I’m not a naysayer to the new movie. I loved it and am happy to have the the old crew back, alive and YOUNG again through the excellent casting choices made.
And yet, I’m not blind to the fact that the storytelling on the new Trek IS somewhat flaky and dumbed down. Attempts to discount this by providing so-called scientific reasoning and completely ignoring the fact that Trek has fairly consistently dealt with this issue very differently in the past are just… well… lame.
Still… love the new movie and am eagerly awaiting more… perhaps more intelligently written installments.
I’m with you in that the new movie makes a clear decision to see this stuff differently, and I am no scientist and so no authourity on the subject, but it seems to me that if it is true that the multi-verse is more credible than the linear string theory, AND it gives the writers an opportunity to side-foot the chronic prequel problem of knowing their fates, then they should go ahead and swallow the inconsistency.
Our understanding of tis stuff changes all the time, and if we now know the world is not flat, it makes sense to not tell falling-off-the-edge-of-the-world stories, which I guess is what “Yesterday’s Enterpris” and “First Contact” were doing.
For the record, I adore both “Yesterday’s Enterprise” AND “First Contact”.
Soooo, normally Spock Prime would enter 2258 in the Prime timeline, because the alternate timeline already branched off due to Nero’s incursion 25 years before. Nobody can “cross over”. Therefore a second alternate timeline would normally have branched off the prime timeline in 2258, a third timeline, Spock’s own, without Nero, and with prime standard TOS history, Vulcan remaining intact etc.. But by putting Spock Prime “in transit”, he also enters the alternate timeline. That’s not science fiction, that’s artistic license. And quite a “slow” singularity. ;)
I want to see a new Star Trek movie, several if the sequel’s any good, and then a series, kinda like TOS with all these characters (and whatever are added with the movies) in this new situation. They could include Old Spock and the Vulcans trying to find a new home. They could even have a mini series about the Kelvin now or later after the new TV series with the new actors. Wouldn’t that be cool. If they did it right it could revive Star Trek even more.
So going by the new movie’s logic….in Star Trek IV when they brought back the whales and saved the Earth, that created an alternate timeline. In the timeline the crew departed from, Earth went on to be destroyed by the alien probe?
According to the new movie, each time you change the past and come back to the future, you’re only ever coming back to an alternate reality like those shown in TNG’s Parallels. Changing the past then “returning” to the future is more like moving between alternate realities.
I think the key explanation has to be that it depends on the way you travel through time. Just like if I spend ages at high impulse travelling to Vulcan, there will be relativistic effects not seen if I went there at warp.
My high school physics teacher would be proud
I got it was an alternate universe right off the bat. Its not that hard to understand. For one thing this technically allows paramount to milk “2” franchise for the price of one. Obviously they would like it if people who like this movie might get interested in the “prime” star trek etc.
Though I do have mix felling about it though, as I have with any alternate realities. I mean if everybody dies here who cares? There’s more of them in other universes anyway. So in some other universe we could all possibly be kings/queens of that universe? :(
Though what I really want to see is Q some where off laughing about all this because he made all this happen just because he was bored.
“They always can try to restore the original timeline or go on in they own new timeline”
OMG. Have you even tried to read and comprehend the article? There’s nothing to restore. Jesus.
The notion that things suddenly “change” or “disappear” in the present when the timeline is changed doesn’t hold anyway. It makes little sense that things would “change” in an instant – instead, we, as viewers, would simply be presented with the outcome of a different course of events. Things have started to change at the point in time when the time-traveler arrives in the past, so they are not suddenly different at the point when he or she leaves the present. This kind of depiction is nothing more than a storytelling device that allows to treat the timeätravelling event as part of a chronological chain of cause and effect, when it is precisely that chain that is broken by time-travelling.
Therefore, if you don’t buy the “many alternate realities” concept, you would have to say that a time-traveller arriving in the past just spontaneously “materializes” there, coming from nowhere – an event that is theoretically possible, albeit infinetely improbable. He or she would have to come out of nowhere, because the course of events that lead to them going back didn’t happen up to the point where the time-traveller goes back and then suddenly seized to exist – they never happened at all in that way. So, spontaneous materialization is the only option left if you want to prexerve the notion of only one time-line. In that case, it would be questionable if any time-travel actually occured or if we are just looking at the spontaneuos materialization of an entity that looks as if it came from a possible future.
Am I making any sense?
Anyway, I think if you want any kind of time-travel-story to work, you have to buy into some version of the multiple-reality concept. I for my part simply like to think that the Star Trek universe is “fuzzy”: It’s a kind of bunde of a high number of interacting time-streams, most of htem are very similar, while some (like the mirror universe), diverge more strongly. That allows to explain all continuity errors away as being an effect of this fuzziness, while it would still be possible to treat this Star-trek-multiverse as a kind of vaguely coherent whole. And it also makes sense if we consider the amount of time-travelling that happens in the star trek universe, which is bound to have some kind of effect that is not always “repaired”.
time travel does not create alternate timelines in star trek. every single time journey – and there are dozents – overwrote the existing timeline and had to be repaired. but the non-canon kelvin with a factory-engineering, thruster-warpdrive and numerous inconsistencies, that ignore a lot of similarities of the nx-01 and ncc-1701, old spocks star wars-ship, old-spocks inability to make another time journey, transwarp-beaming, the missing trek-philosophy and much more makes clear, that abrams star trek is a full reboot.
#21 (Locutus) Absolutely right. But apparently there are also temporal phenomena that occur in one timeline alone, as in “Yesterday’s Enterprise”. In the multiverse theory, the Enterprise-C would have created an alternate timeline by going back to the past. But that’s not how the episode was constructed.
#25 There are not absolutism about time travels Knut.
In the previous Star Trek History they always used other media to travel back in Time. So there always is a possibility to create an alternate line without erasing the other. In the previous movies, also voayger was said, that they could change the events, but even if they created an alternate line and the present the wanted to change still exists, how could they have recougnized it? You altered the line, so you are within a new reality for yourself. Time Travel is a very philosophical not just scientific thing, because there are just theories over theories and Trek always took the what if one of them might be true. But to create or fix things in Time still leave the possibility to have the old line left.
That isn’t a thing to argue for, just a thing to accept. You just want to have thing overwritten, because you need a reason to hate the movie, that’s it.
ST is ruined thanks to these yoyo’s. Ugh, if Vulcan is destroyed in the past, how is it there in the present?? What a sham
Well – nothing new about alternative reality. We knew that. But there is a different question. Can someone explain to me how it happens that you can travel along one timeline OR you can travel to another one.
And of course the mirror universe IS also another reality.
So when do we get Star Trek-Final Crisis when both timelines come crashing together??? lol
Just so long as this isn’t a nail in the coffin of a possible Prime TV show.
One could be cynical about this, and say the only reason there’s an Alternate Universe is so they can rush how Kirk and co came together, into one film. It could’ve been done differently, with the reboot/reimagined issue fudged differently. Keeping the broadstrokes of continuity, while still insisting its nobody’s future is defined.
Personally I’d have preferred Trek to buck the “All Prequels are Bad” trend and pull off a trilogy to TOS. Spending more time on the fine details.
Part I – Young Kirk and Spock story narrative running alongside each other. Film runs from their birth to 2245. A rites of passage from childhood to well into his early 30’s by the final film. Kirk gets interested in space exploration with an historic media event, the launch of the NCC-1701 (moonlanding parallel). Through his Father, the 12 year old meets Robert April its first Captain. A visiting legend Jonathan Archer is also present in a cameo role, on an inspection tour. Ship gets into trouble on its maidern voyage, as they always do and young Kirk is along for the ride.
Part II & III – Continue to cover at least 3 important crossroads in three decades (2255, 2265) apart but connected in some way by the same returning antagonist, but not a villain from the future. By the end of the story, Robert April will have fallen from grace, leading an attempted coup to overthrow Starfleet, disappointing the boy who worshipped him as a hero. To hell with destiny, while serving aboard the Sutherland there’s a battle against a corrupted Admiral April and a 30-year old Kirk’s valour is so amazing, he chooses the ship he wants to command next… With Fleet Captain Pike injured, he wants April’s historic ship and there’s no coincidence.
I don’t buy that “Yesterday’s Enterprise” takes place in a “bubble” or “temporary timeline”. My thoughts is that in the prime timeline, the Ent-C vanishes in the anomaly, creating an alternate timeline where the Klingons and Federation go to war. The Ent-C reappears in the Prime Timeline, momentarily after vanishing, is destroyed, and Tasha is captured, leading to Sela – who exists in the Prime Timeline, thus proving my theory.
Thus the anomaly in “Yesterday’s Enterprise” was a portal between universes, dimensions, or timelines. After the Ent-C left the alternate timeline, history would have continued there – with the Ent-D destroyed, and eventually the Federation losing the war.
I believe all of this has been discussed in books and comics.
I stick to the idea set by David Gerrold (who wrote “yesteryear” for the animated series. In his book ‘The man who folded himself’ he describes the life of a time-traveler and explains prime and alternate universes very clearly and succinctly: “. . .Subjectively he thinks he’s traveling all over creation re-writing time, but to his home timeline, he simply disappeared.”
30. Actually, your post reminds me of the book ‘Q-Squared.’ Q created chaos (again!) by crashing timelines together-i.e., one timeline in which Riker and Deanna were married with a child, Worf never joined starfleet and was a Klingon officer, Beverly Crusher’s husband never died, etc.
It was very interesting.
I’m confused, but I guess I shouldn’t worry my pretty little head over it….
No, I’M WITH YOU TOO Felkin ( Number 6 )….Back To The Future’s Time-Travel antics were contradictory ( Alternate Timeline or a Timeline that alters/overwrites and recreates the world around the characters as events change? As in BackTTF2 – it should be one or the other – it can’t be both….!!
For me, ST09 Time-Travel scenario was simple and…logical.
In my mind I see Trek 09 as a big-screen ‘Myriad Universe’, certainly enjoyable like the rest of the recent Pocket Books tales, but seperate from the Trek most of us know and love.
It’s all Trek, and there’s more to come, which is always good :)
#29 (jamjumetley): “Can someone explain to me how it happens that you can travel along one timeline OR you can travel to another one.”
As a rule—but like every rule it has exceptions, of course—, if you travel to the future, no alternate timeline is created, because at the time of your departure, the future isn’t yet written. So you always only travel along your own timeline, whether back or forth in time. Alternate universes are only created, if you enter a point in time in the past. That past was already written, and to avoid a time travel paradox, a new parallel universe is created. So you don’t “travel to that timeline”, you actually create it by appearing in the past.
However, episodes like “Yesterday’s Enterprise” no doubt follow the paradox-formula, and the only “Trek Science Fiction explanation” I can give, is that it depends on the kind of temporal anomaly/spacetime distortion/singularity etc., if the temporal back-and-forth is happening in only one timeline, or if an actual parallel timeline is created.
When looking at ST09 superficially, an obvious error in the new film seems to be that Spock Prime enters the alternate timeline created by Nero, whereas in “reality” he would actually have traveld back along the prime timeline and created a *second* alternate timeline upon entering, a timeline without Nero. So, the only explanation is that since the singularity has one entrance point in the future and two exit points in the past (in two separate timelines), Spock Prime “in transit” somehow was either sent to the alternate exit point (physical properties of the singularity) or had the technology to “choose” that specific exit point.
This creates an interesting question: It’s clear that if Spock Prime for some reason would choose to travel back to the future, it normally wouldn’t be the future he knows from the prime timeline, but a completely new one, because it would only be along that one timeline created in the new film (see above; no alternate universe when traveling to the future). But what if the singularity he and Nero used to travel through time still existed and were still stable and were two-way? Then he could actually return to the prime timeline, which is kinda strange, but that’s science fiction, I guess.
Did I forget anything? ;)
So the TCW was always part of TOS,TNG,DS9,VOY past?
The hardest thing to somehow accept is that as of now, every single time they went back in time to fix it; well it never really happened or they didn’t fix anything, it was always them ending in a new universe, thought it was the same one and had actually “fixed” it.
Either that or it was all a dream…
For the 1st time I’m having those Janeway time-continuum headaches!
To me, it was a brilliant move by JJ, Orci, Kurtzman, and Company…because of the very idea that both timelines/realities do exist and can be further explored. Myself, at the moment, I am interested in this new reality. However, that doesn’t mean the prime timeline means less to me. In fact, it means more. Brilliant! More so than Back To The Future, because the alternate timelines in Back To The Future weren’t so fun and interesting.
Ugh. I prefer one time line. Don’t make things so confusing.
#32 (GraniteTrek): When the Enterprise-C vanishes in the prime timeline, that incident does *not* create an alternate timeline. How could it? At that point the future is not written. To my mind, the only sound explanation for “Yesterday’s Enterprise” is that the temporal phenomenon exists in one timeline alone.
If an alternate timeline were created in “Yesterday’s Enterprise”, it would be at the moment the Enterprise-C travels *back* in time. This however would mean that ALL of the TNG series is actually an alternate timeline, and the timeline, in which the Federation is at war with the Klingons, would actually be the prime TNG timeline. There’s only one problem: At the beginning of the episode everything is “normal” on the Enterprise-D, and then all of sudden the Enterprise is at war, and Guinan vaguely remembers. I don’t like the “temporary timeline” idea either, but everything presented in that episode points to the solution that it happens *at least* in one timeline alone, i.e. a classic time travel paradox. (Whether it’s also a “temporary reality”, is open to debate. Since Guinan remembers a few things, it’s a possible answer.)
21. Locutus De La Borg: ‘So going by the new movie’s logic….in Star Trek IV when they brought back the whales and saved the Earth, that created an alternate timeline. In the timeline the crew departed from, Earth went on to be destroyed by the alien probe?’
Yep. In the timeline Kirk and his gang left, the Earth was destroyed. In that timeline, Gilian Taylor and two whales never disappeared. The moment the Bounty arrives in 1986, a new version of history is created. They then head back to the future of this new universe.
‘According to the new movie, each time you change the past and come back to the future, you’re only ever coming back to an alternate reality like those shown in TNG’s Parallels. Changing the past then “returning” to the future is more like moving between alternate realities.’
Remember Back to the Future 2? To get back home, Doc Brown, Marty and co had to find the divergence point in the timeline.
The Enterprise-C did create an alternate timeline in Yesterday’s Enterprise. In the original timeline, the Enterprise-C disappeared in battle and was knocked into the future. In that future the Federation is losing a war against the Klingons. Guinan, with her time sensitivity can sense a possible other timeline that doesn’t exist yet. The Enterprise-D is destroyed protecting the Enterprise-C and presumably the Klingons go on to conquer the UFP.
Tasha Yar travelled back in time with the Enterprise-C, creating an alternate timeline – the regular TNG history – in which the Enterprise-C was lost in battle. In effect, YE sees the creation of the TNG universe as we know it.
Yar’s daughter then proceeds to oversee the events leading up to the Klingon Civil War and the attempted Romulan invasion of Vulcan.
So, actually, the whole of TNG is an alternate timeline! Discuss! ;)
You can see it both ways. You have non-linair timetravel and linair-time travel. The first one means you simply go to another parralell universe which is it’s own reality and doesn’t affect anything (parralel universe travel doesn’t have to be timetravel, but it can be).
With linair timetravel you really go back in time in the same universe, so you can actually change things.
The blackhole was just a portal to another universe. The movies/time episodes were linair timetravel.
@44 read my 43post :)
Personally, I treat the whole thing as a manifestation of the Niven Doctrine (as seen in “Parallels”). This includes the destruction of Romulus! I consider that event to have occurred in an alternate timeline because the way it was presented in the Countdown comics just doesn’t make sense from a cosmological standpoint (though I will grant that not much else in Trek does, either). Also, the movie’s tech base is too high (much like it was on Enterprise). Therefore, I consider the “new” timeline to be a double alternate, if not a triple.
But that’s just me. Your mileage may vary.
#44 (Dom): That’s exactly what I wrote above: ALL of TNG would be an alternate timeline. But there is one huge flaw: the episode “Yesterday’s Enterprise” already begins with that “normal timeline”. If the Enterprise-C had actually vanished in the past that “normal timeline” would NEVER have existed until the Ent-C went back. When you travel to the future, that future is not yet written at the time of your departure, so you don’t create an alternate universe. That only happens if you travel *back* in time.
The filmmakers of “Yesterday’s Enterprise” began the episode with the normal Enterprise-D, therefore it’s a temporal phenomenon that only occurs in one timeline. If they had begun the episode directly with the Enterprise-D at war with the Klingons, then it could be explained with the multiverse theory, and then you would also be correct that ALL of TNG were an alternate timeline. But since they showed us the “normal” Enterprise at the beginning, that alternate-reality-explanation is not supported in any way. “Yesterday’s Enterprise” is a classic time paradox story in one timeline alone.
so, because of nero’s arrival in the past, the san francisco shipyards are moved to iowa?
and the whole crew graduates the academy in the same class?
and pikes first officer, his number one, is nowhere to be seen?
and chekov is serving on the 1701 before sulu?
How does First Contact fit in with the new timeline? After all, most of that film takes place prior to 2233, but not all of it. And isn’t it lucky that the Enterprise E just happened to return to the correct timeline? For that matter, you might say the same for Star Trek IV.
they could have written a good canon story, concerning the adventures of chris pike, with a paralell story of kirks days at the academy, centered around spock.
the sequel would have been kirk on the farragut, pike’s last mission, and the events leading to kirks command on the 1701.
the third, would be a purely kirk/spock/mccoy-centric tos crew adventure…
i cite the lord of the rings trilogy and the star wars prequels as far as character and story development.
i’d say those pictures did quite well.
they could have, in one movie, accelerated the story by convenient leaps and bounds the way they handled this trek movie, but that would have diminished the literary and entertainment value, and outraged the fans.
lotr and sw-preq’s were also aimed at a wider audience than core fans, and were quite successful.
Looks a lot like Doc Brown’s chalkboard diagram.
“…Creating this ALTERNATE 1985!”