Now that the Star Trek movie hoopla has died down it is time to set aside STO9 Tidbits and bring back The Great Links, your regular update for Star Trek in the zeitgeist. This week we face off with Guinness and Doctor Who, worry about the criminal Klingon lifestyle, get an Andorian eyeful, Dance to Shatner on the Mountain, and more.
Doctor Who most successful sci-fi series?
On Sunday the Guinness Book of World Records anointed the British time-travel series Doctor Who as ‘the most successful sci-fi series of all time.’ According to Variety, Guinness based this on "broadcast ratings, DVD sales, book sales and iTunes traffic" but also noted that "longevity was another factor." The first series of Doctor Who launched on the BBC in 1963 and has been on again off again since that time with a total of 30 seasons and 753 episodes and a TV movie. It is certainly true that Who has some more longevity than Trek. While no single Star Trek series can match up, when taken as a franchise, Trek has 30 seasons (counting TAS), with 715 episodes and 11 feature films. In an article about this subtitled ‘Suck it, Star Trek‘ Entertainment Weekly notes "Defining "success" for a show — sci-fi or otherwise — is a much more amorphous proposition, and I think the Guinness folks are confusing "successful" with "lucrative." TrekMovie agrees. And even when looking at ‘lucrative’ it is hard to believe that Doctor Who DVD sales would come close to those for all of Star Trek, or even just Star Trek The Next Generation. TrekMovie asked Guinness to provide more details on how they quantified ‘most successful’ but so far has got no response. We suggest The Guinness Book sticks to the easily quantifiable, like the world’s biggest cupcake.
The Enterprise would totally pwn the TARDIS
(photo manip: ScifiScoop)
And yet another true crime Star Trek story involving Klingon swords. This time UK’s Blackburn Citizen reports that police raiding a home of a suspected drug dealer in Woodnoook, Accrington, UK found a number of weapons including a two-foot long machete and "a replica sword used by Klingons in Star Trek." The article notes that it is not illegal to own the sword, however it was seized as "potential evidence of a criminal lifestyle." You have been warned Klingons fans!
These guys are showing off their ‘criminal lifestyle?’
Chonastock are back with more Andorian Love
Last year we highlighted a fun and sexy Star Trek landing party series made by the ‘Chonastock’ girls of Australia. That article lead to the girls being featured in Geek Magazine for the Star Trek special issue in April. And this week Ona Okon of Chonastock let me know of a new Star Trek photo gallery they just put up, this time it is all old-school Andorian. Ona Tells TrekMovie "I just wanted to expand on Andorians a bit more – I love the Original Series Andorians (miles cooler than Enterprise Andorians in my mind) but its a bit sad they never had any girls." Go to chon`astock.deviantart.com to see the full set.
From Andoria, With Love
(Photo: Charis Sutton)
Video of the week: Shatner of The Mount
This week William Shatner has appeared twice this week on the Tonight Show to make a little fun of the former Governor of Alaska, by turning her speaking and tweets into performance art poetry. Well, what is good for the goose is good for the gander. YouTuber ‘FallOnYourSword’ has taken a Shatner-at-peak-ego vignette (made during the shooting of his Star Trek V: The Final Frontier), and turned it into a dance mix.
More Trek Bits
Couple selected as winners of free Star Trek wedding at Star Trek: The Exhibition at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, PA
Star Trek is one of the franchises analyzed by io9 in their article "Are SciFi Franchises As Popular as Religion?"
Team Star Trek lost to Team Star Wars at the Rollerderby Convnetion in Las Vegas Yesterday (Rollercon Twitter)
Thanks Paul & Andrew for tips
Both shows are great and iconic.
Too bad there will not doubt be the odd idiot who tries to bad mouth the merits of either series on this thread. BOTH shows have had an indelible influence on Science Fiction television and should be treated with equal regard, whether one likes them or not.
Cute girl, but too bad she’s not wearing something sexier. : (
And I think just the fact everyone on the planet pretty much knows what Star Trek is should make it more “successful” than DW. I’m a huge DW fan too, but come ON.
#1 and #2 – I second (or, would it be third, now?) your sentiments. I’m a fan of both shows and consider them among the very best that science fiction has ever produced. (The recent “revival” seasons/series of Doctor Who were particularly amazing and what introduced me to Doctor Who.) Please, please, don’t get into fights and foul-tempered yelling spats over them!
I like Andorian women for some reason. . .
Ever since Enterprise you know. . .
The antennae maybe. . .
Ah, it’ll come to me. . .
Never really got into Dr. Who. But does that make me a bad person? I just prefer Star Trek is all. I know lot’s of reasonable, intelligent people who don’t like spicy food or Asian fare. It’s called a matter of taste.
But to say that Dr. Who is a more “successful” sci-fi series than Star Trek? Not better, but rather “successful”. No disrespect to DW and it’s many great fans, but get serious. Star Trek series have spawned 11 movies so far. And had to have generated way more money as a result.
Agreed with the sentiment that Guinness Book should stick to what it knows: Huge balls of twine and most chicken wings eaten at a single sitting. High brow stuff of that nature.
Captain Kirk is climbing a mountain.
This is still the best music clip Ive ever seen,,,
What do you expect when they go with a category as nebulous as “successful”?
If they had just said “longevity” or “most revenue generated”, there wouldn’t be any ambiguity, but whatever…:P
@1, 2, 3, 4: Fifthed! I loves me some Doctor Who almost as much as Trek. And on a related note, Alexander Siddig is guest starring in one of the upcoming Doctor Who audio plays. I’m hyped! :)
I haven’t watched Doctor Who in at least fifteen years, and even then, I only saw it occasionally.
Nonetheless, I completely agree.
Both series are benchmarks of sci-fi, and should be treated with equal respect.
I heart the Chonastock girls and you KNOW I heart Andorians, so the combination is always a delight.
I believe the article contains an error when it claims that Doctor Who has “a _total_ [emphasis mine] of 30 seasons and 753 episodes and a TV movie,” since while that’s already a handsome total, it overlooks the feature films and spinoff TV shows set in the same universe. If Deep Space Nine counts toward the Star Trek franchise mass, Sarah Jane Adventures (etc) surely counts toward the Whovian franchise total.
Now, those are the Andorians I like! And the horns are in the right place too.
“”I just wanted to expand on Andorians a bit more – I love the Original Series Andorians (miles cooler than Enterprise Andorians in my mind)”
And I’ve always said that. In my opinion the greatest missed opportunity for exploration of a race in the whole mythos of the show. Crazy but cool Reggie Nalder struggling to wrap his lips around the English language. Brilliant casting. Brilliant performance.
Haha, I like the picture of the Enterprise shooting up the TARDIS.
But could the Enterprise tow the Earth across the galaxy? I THOUGHT NOT!
I believe DW is more successful then ST for many reasons, especially in that it reaches, and is enjoyed more by, a wider audience. My girlfriend refuses to watch ST, liked the latest film though, but loves DW, which is a sentiment shared by everyone I knew at University and most of our friends. Whilst I am the biggest ST fan outside of the uniform wearing Trekkies you will ever find, I honestly hand on heart agree with what Guinness say…
…and complaining on here just seems a liiiiittle bitter more then anything
Oh, and Andorian girls are hot…trying to persuade the girlfriend…well to do anything Trek related…no sexy red uniform as of yet, so I assume dressing up as an Andorian is out of the window…
Last I checked, Swords are banned in the UK (knife crime/no constitution right to self protection) – so batleths must be considered wall art. I’d be embarrassed to have one of those imitation batleths that look nothing like a real one – and I do have one that passes for the real thing.
TOS andorians are better.
Obviously Guinness is going solely off of oldest still functioning continuity.
@ 17 – No not technically….as I have several swords. Possesion of an offensive weapon is illegal…and ambiguous!
And as for the lack of a constitutional right to defend, due to the amazing British legal system, we have a non-constitutional right to do anything we like. As we have no written constitution (with the exception of the Magna Carta), British people are constitutionally free to do whatever they like, and it is our laws that limit that freedom, as opposed to having our freedoms limited by a constitution…its a better, fairer and freer systems, and one that British people really don’t understand or appreciate!
LOL! Oh boy, are we really geeks. We’re arguing more about Trek vs. DW and NOT clamoring about the sexy Andorian chick. I know she’s not an Orion Slave Girl, but come on – She’s HOT !
HE WANTS TO MAKE LOVE TO THE MOUNTAIN
Oh and #15, I’d say you’re right as far as the UK goes. In the US the reverse is true. A lot of people here aren’t familiar with Doctor Who at all, especially anything prior to David Tenant. Star Trek has far greater public recognition here.
LOVE THE REMIX !!!
She’s even hotter in the Starfleet uniform: http://chonastock.deviantart.com/gallery/#Star-Trek-Series-2
Pike shoulda just shown Kirk a few of those pix – he’d have signed up for the Academy on the spot.
Doctor Who kicks Star Trek’s blue a$$ – Harlan Ellison said so.
With a title that has SUCK IT, STAR TREK in it, I remember why I do not read Entertainment Weekly.
Chonastock was awesome.
“Dr. Who” vs. “Star Trek”. Ironically it’s the same argument as Star Trek: The Motion Picture vs. Star Trek (09).
I’ve never been this much in love with an alien!
#15: I agree, absolutely.
#19: I agree, absolutely (although I posted on both).
#21: Sure, but it’s a book of _world_ records, not American records. I personally don’t have all the relevant data in front of me to compare world success of the two TV shows, do you? I do know it recently made news that an African despot may be hoarding lost Doctor Who episodes … :)
And such things fluctuate with the times, even if, objectively, they should be judged from outside the timeline, as it were. Right now, Doctor Who itself is an active TV show (albeit taking the year half-off for the handover) with two active spinoffs and a third spinoff on the way next year (K-9 adventures) … While Trek is still canceled back in the 1960s and all its spinoffs are currently just as canceled.
It’s a ridiculously subjective topic, to be sure … but as measures of “success” for a TV series goes, “nothing new airing, nothing new currently slated to air” versus “show and two spinoffs with third spinoff in production” has to count for something, surely.
I like that Andorian girl….TOS is ALWAYS better than any of the cheesy spin-offs (even when it comes to alien races, like the Klingons, Vulcans, etc)! :D
#29: Amen to that, with a quadruple dose of AMEN on the Klingons. The Klingons were utterly awesome in TOS, and I mourn them :(
Can I respectfully suggest that one reason that Who gets the record and Trek doesn’t is that Who is a *series* and Trek is a *franchise*.
That is, Doctor Who is (taken as a whole) one continuous, ongoing series about the adventures of a single character (albeit with a fairly large hiatus between 1989 and 2005). Conversely, the Trek franchise is made up of several different series that are often only connected by the fact that they are set in the same fictional universe. After all, how much connection is there between TOS and Voyager, for example. The latest movie’s not even set in the same universe either!
If the record was for most succesful sci-fi franchise, I think Trek would beat who hands down. But if we’re talking about the success of a single, ongoing sci-fi series, it has to be Who.
Hey man I noticed her. I’m doubly in love for her because she likes the original Andorians too.
The Tardis could fly circles around the Enterprise. Doctor Who wins hands down.
#31 Moreover, consider the population viewing the respective series.
How many eyeballs watched Star Trek?
How many on Doctor Who?
The ratio would probably be relative to the ratio of populations of the United States to that of the United Kingdom, hence about 5:1.
If everyone in Whoville watched Doctor Seuss Trek, and it ran for umpty-umpteen years, wouldn’t it be more successful? I mean, umpty-umpteen years with umpteenty-umpty-umpt episodes is much more than Doctor Who or Star Trek.
Even though there are but umpty-five people in Whoville….
Oh, Cindy Lou, what will we do?
I think we should count hours of content. Weren’t the original Who episodes about 25 minutes long until 1989? Just to add more apples and oranges to the discussion….
I expect someone to calculate the total hours of product of DW and ST by tomorrow… get out your calculators!
@29, 30: I don’t know, the Andorians on Enterprise were absolutely fantastic — especially with the mobile antennae.
#31: “If the record was for most succesful sci-fi franchise, I think Trek would beat who hands down.”
It’d definitely be a different slant on things, that’s for sure, although full-on franchise-comparison also opens the door to other heavy contenders, like the big comic-book universes (which are every bit as sci-fi … and every bit as fantasy … as both Star Trek and Doctor Who).
In terms of endurance and breadth, the D.C. universe has had success in every imaginable medium since the days when most of the imaginable media were brand new, still working out the kinks in sound and not even thinking about adding color or stereo :) Feature films, matinee serials, TV shows, radio shows, comic magazines, newspaper comics, novels, short fiction, scads of computer games, toys, figurines, lunchboxes, cartoon series … all for decades before Doctor Who or Star Trek ever existed, and right up to the present day (and that’s _just_ considering Batman and Superman, let alone the cumulative additions made by Wonder Woman, Teen Titans, the Justice League, etc).
(okay, not ALL for decades before Trek and Who … the computer games are a bit later to the party) :)
Nice collection of fan performance art. The andorian girl is cute but I like the brunette earth girl better. And the Barbarella art was nice and the first besides the movie and movie promo pictures I’ve seen.
I still think the 200+ Klingon nude girl collection I got back in 2002 is the best, it’s not just the bare curves that makes it good, the women look more natural in the pictures. As the 2 girls here look almost staged photo subjects. But so do some of the photos from the filming of TOS in the 60’s.
It must all be in the talent of the photographer/director that counts.
As for computer games the first game was spacewar in 1965, the first star trek game was in 1971-2 (programming started in the winter of1971 and finished in the summer of 1972).
I tought my self how to program in BASIC from a program code listing from a HP timesharing Main frame in the summer of 1976.
Herd of a Dr. Who game cartridge in 2006.
The British never really made TV as anything big or popular in the 60’s like Hollywood did. I recall Dr. Who use to be called a Teleplay as all British TV was called in the 60’s. They did not label them TV shows until 1974. I think it was The Avengers that got the name to go from play to show.
Then I think the movie count answers who wins, Trek 11 Who 1.
And then the final factor, how many fan shows to copy the televised show,
Trek 8 (that I’ve collected) Who ZERO that I’ve herd of, but never looked for.
The only good point for Dr, Who is with the Star Trek fan shows and the 5 series, Dr. Who may have a a couple of hand fills more (thats around 10). But by next years end Star Trek may pass or equall the Doctors record. That depends on either the British season show count of 12-14 or the American show count of 23-26. (those counts based on show count averages over the last 2 years on shows I’ve watched.)
Since people are indulging in another flamewar on Who vs Trek, let’s not forget that Stargate is another long-running franchise as well. As for me – these two series were the cornerstones of my childhood. Star Trek was the first series to show me that people with diverse backgrounds can work together for the betterment of humanity. Doctor Who had one of the first heroes I ever saw who used his intelligence rather than his fists to beat the bad guy.
It’s great to see both of my childhood favourites updated succesfully for a modern audience. As I recall, there were plenty of people that were sceptical that Russell T Davies and JJ Abrams could pull it off. But they did, and for that I’m very grateful.
I use to watch StarGate every time it came on Showtime, and every now and then when The Sci-Fi channel bought it. It seems that Sci-Fi bought the name of the show and the preformers but they failed to buy the creative writing crew also with the show. But that all could be a paycheck factor. Showtime had big pockets and Sci-Fi has to spend its money paying unions, distributors and the Feds (payroll and taxes(health, welfare, retirement, unemployment))
#39 says: ” Then I think the movie count answers who wins, Trek 11 Who 1.”
Doctor Who has had two feature films. Both starred Peter Cushing as the Doctor, one in 1965 and one in 1966. Doctor Who also had a made-for-TV movie starring Paul McGann as the Doctor.
That side, are you seriously suggesting that the defining criteria for the success of a television series is the amount of _non-TV_ tie-in merchandise it spawns? That’s what I’m reading from your phrase “the movie count answers who wins.” Why on earth would the movie count answer who wins?
“And then the final factor, how many fan shows to copy the televised show, Trek 8 (that I’ve collected) Who ZERO that I’ve herd of, but never looked for.”
You’d have “herd” of many if you’d bothered looking; Who fans have been making fan-made films, video programs and audio dramas for decades, and have (like Star Trek fan-producers and others) a history of loaning their homegrown props to professional productions in a pinch, too.
What made you conclude that your inability to “her” of Doctor Who fan shows (when you admit you made no attempt to) is the “final factor” in the success of the TV shows?
I admit, I heart the Chonastock girls, too.
Keep it up, ladies. You are awesome.
Doctor Who is a single series, Star Trek is a grouping of related series under a single IP/Franchise. No individual Star Trek series could claim Doctor Who’s longevity – with or without gaps. Star Trek (IP) has inevitably made much, much more than Doctor Who because of its cinematic success and greater amounts of merchandise over a longer time. In terms of screen hours, they’re about equal. Doctor Who is older.
In terms of ratings, the US audience is bigger but more splintered. Plenty of recent episodes of Doctor Who have touched the 10 million viewers mark (in the UK). That’s a lot more than sci-fi programming (BSG or whatever) can manage in the US, these days. TNG’s highest TV ratings (c26 million) ever are higher than Doctor Who’s, (16million) but they’re a much smaller proportion of the population of the series’ primary market.
In the UK Doctor Who has a cultural penetration roughly equivalent to Star Trek’s in the US. And vice versa. Neither show is anything like as well known in the other’s country, although Star Trek, having been properly networked on major channels, is better known in the UK than Who is in the US.
Which is to say that you could argue it both ways if you took the whole franchise up against Doctor Who, but not really both ways if you took an individual Trek show up against Doctor Who.
Me? I like both series a lot. I do see the need for a smackdown.
> The British never really made TV as anything big or popular in the 60’s like > Hollywood did. I recall Dr. Who use to be called a Teleplay as all British TV > was called in the 60’s. They did not label them TV shows until 1974. I think >it was The Avengers that got the name to go from play to show.
That’s just, er, gibberish, dude. Seriously. I write about the history of British TV for a living and that’s, like, more mistakes than words.
Am I being an idiot but I only count 29 star trek series? 3 TOS + 1 TAS + 7 TNG + 7 DS9 + 7 VGR + 4 ENT = 29.
I personaly love Star Trek and Dr Who. Im from the UK which makes Dr Who that much cooler that a low budget UK show (well the early stuff, especially the third doctor episodes) can compete with a huge Ameican show.
Also Dr Who has had three movies, however two of them are non canon remakes of episodes. But they are still pritty good.
Beautiful Andorian :-) Wow…I like this original looking more than the new one. TOS Andorian – looking women are more sexy in my opinion :-)
@ 46 Two TAS.
Just wanted to note that I think in terms of creating and perpetuating a mythology, Doctor Who trumps Star Trek; he’s the modern equivalent of Robin Hood or the Camelot myths with no single creator and many different interpretations across a vast range of media, a chorus of writers adding to, reinterpreting and recreating the story over and over, truly a shared story and universe.
For some fans there was an unbroken run of stories from 1963 through until now as the Virgin New Adventures covered the period between the late 80s to 1996 to the TV movie then the BBC Book Eighth Doctor stories between then and 2005, along with (in parallel) the comic strips in Doctor Who Magazine and from 1999 the audio adventures from Big Finish.