Watch Neil deGrasse Tyson Put The Smackdown On The USS Enterprise

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This was the geek argument to end all geek arguments. At the San Diego Comic Con, one of the smallest panels of the weekend, got a special spectator sitting in the audience. Renowned astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson attended Geek Magazine’s Starship Smackdown panel but not as a panelist but as a true geek and fan.

The Starship Smackdown panel was on the last day of Comic-Con in one of the smallest rooms, Room 6A. The panel discussed the merits of starships in popular science fiction through the decades, including X-Wing Fighters vs. BSG’s Colonial Vipers, the Millennium Falcon vs. Serenity, in an NCAA College Basketball bracket style tournament. But when the panel came to an impasse of which was the better USS Enterprise, the original TV version vs. the motion picture version, they outsourced the final decision to the audience. Neil was there and ready for action.

Neil deGrasse Tyson, who was only observing the panel, walked up to the audience microphone and chimed in his two cents. He makes the argument that the TV USS Enterprise is the best starship in all of science fiction. He compared the way both starships were received when they were first introduced and since there was nothing like it at the time, the TV USS Enterprise has to win out.

The group of panelist collected was among the very best in sci-fi and fantasy. It included writer Ashley Edward Miller (Thor, X-Men: First Class), producer Robert Meyer Burnett (Free Enterprise), producer Kay Reindl (Legend of the Seeker), editor Jeff Bond (Geek Magazine), writer Steve Melching (Star Wars: The Clone Wars) and artist Chris Gossett (Tales of the Jedi). Maybe next year, the panel should invite Neil deGrasse Tyson to be a panelist. Also pay attention to the man in white behind Neil deGrasse Tyson at the end of the video. He is not impressed with him at all.


  1. Andrew Reese says:

    Best Enterprise was TMP version Constitution Class refit!

    • ejd1984 says:

      I agree. to this day, it’s still a work of art. Even though in the TMP, it was supposed to be the latest state-of-art in technology and performance. I got more than a little frustrated in the subsequent movies where the producers kept “downgrading” the ship in technology and capabilities.

      • RCSlyman says:

        Wait, what? They never downgraded it. They barely showed her in battle. Two lucky shots by Klingons with extenuating circumstances, Chang and his hacked cloaking device, and Khan with the Reliant, a friendly ship. Granted, STV, she was pretty bad, but it was also a brand new ship, and the shipyards were still a little sloppy after the whaleprobe.

        • ejd1984 says:

          The Search for Spock – “Jim, the Enterprise is 20 years old, and we feel her day is over” And at this point the ship was at the most 5-7 old since the big refit. 🙂

          • JT says:

            Since the refit yes, but a refit isn’t a new ship. They upgrade certain systems, replace parts, but much of the ship would have still be 20 years old. Think if it like upgrade the operating system on an old computer. You can do that, but as the technology progresses eventually you won’t be able to keep upgrading anymore because your computer will just be too old to handle using the newest technology.

  2. BlackContractor says:

    He is only speaking the truth. The Constitution Class Enterprise gives us the first idea of what an advanced starship design would look like. Everything up until then sucked big time.

    • R'lyeh Athletic says:

      Actually I disagree that ALL starship design sucked until then. I still think the a ship from Forbidden Planet was quite a good science fiction design – taking the flying saucer concept away from the “aliens” and giving it to humans. I just think that was a nice touch. Best ship ever though – TOS Enterprise without a shadow of a doubt.

  3. DrSheldonCooper says:

    I still don’t forgive him for declassifying Pluto. I liked Pluto.

  4. Simon Jester says:

    “the TV USS Enterprise is the best starship in all of science fiction”


  5. uvsk420 says:

    i’m not an avid trekkie but i like the one at the end of the next generation that riker was captaining, the enterprise with the cloaking device