From rank titles to Starfleet operations to ships named Enterprise, Star Trek has been heavily inspired by Naval traditions. In celebration of this November as National Aircraft Carrier Month, we gathered together some of Trek’s finest in a tribute to the US Navy and the men and women who serve and to make sure that history never forgets the name Enterprise.
With a new real life aircraft carrier named USS Enterprise and a new Star Trek television series both in the pipeline, Trek and the Navy are both continuing its celebration of Naval traditions and visions for the future. What better time than now, during National Aircraft Carrier Month, to reflect on the role the Navy and its traditions have had on our favorite franchise.
Rod Roddenberry (son of Gene Roddenberry and Executive Producer of Star Trek: Discovery), Ronald D. Moore (writer/director The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine), Tim Russ (Tuvok from Voyager), and Scott Bakula (Captain Archer of the Enterprise NX-01 in Star Trek: Enterprise) each gave their unique perspectives on how the Navy has shaped Star Trek and the hope that one day, maybe one day soon, we will break our Earthly bonds and expand our exploration into the solar system and beyond.
History will never forget the name Enterprise
Stretching all the way back to 1775, before the United States was even a country, there have been eight US Naval ships named Enterprise. The ninth, the Gerald R. Ford-class aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN-80), was announced in 2012 and is scheduled to start its oceanic voyage in 2025.
The British Navy had ships named HMS Enterprise as early as 1705, which can be seen in the opening credits of Star Trek: Enterprise.
The name itself has a long and storied tradition, but other naval cues have found their way into Trek lore. Other Starfleet ships (and space stations) have been named for naval vessels as recently as Star Trek Beyond‘s Starbase Yorktown. And, of course, the structure of Starfleet, right down to rank titles and procedures, are based on those of the United States Navy.
The Battlestar Galactica reboot, which was created writer/producer Trek vet Ronald D. Moore, looked to naval aviation in great detail to model the flight and operations of the show’s Viper spacecraft.
The fictional USS Discovery, scheduled to make its on screen debut in May of 2017 in Star Trek: Discovery, has namesakes in both the British and Canadian Navies and will no doubt continue to celebrate Star Trek’s naval heritage.
On this November 2016, we at TrekMovie want to wish the US Navy and the men and women who serve this country a very happy National Aircraft Carrier Month. Live long and prosper.