Star Trek has boldly gone where no man has gone before. That much is clear after decades and decades of the franchise that has included numerous different movies and television shows. But for all the iterations the franchise has seen over its many years, there’s one aspect it really hasn’t ever leaned into. Star Trek for all its new characters and mysteries around the cosmos has rarely taken a truly scary path. That could be set to change. Insider Daniel Richtman is saying that future projects are definitely going to start exploring the horror side of space.
This rumor comes on the heels of Star Trek, as a franchise, really starting to increase its footprint as a tentpole name in the industry. It really already was one of the truly iconic science fiction reference points anyway, but recent years have seen a continued expansion of the universe (so to speak) with even a new movie on the way. This is what makes Richtman’s claim so interesting. Because in thinking about it, it does feel a little surprising that the franchise has avoided going this route in the past, opting often to keep things relatively family-friendly in its stories and arcs.
It’s not to say that Star Trek hasn’t had its fair share of tension over the years. There have been countless examples of edge-of-your-seat moments and even life-and-death situations. But none of them have really been in the horror vein. That hasn’t been a line they were willing or really even able to cross. Who could blame the different show and movie creators either? This is a franchise born out of a popular network television show. Even when things went bigger budget, it was more about exploring the tension humans can have with alien races (and with each other) more than actually trying to terrify the viewer.
But considering how the Star Trek franchise is growing and reaching out into different subcategories, going a little Alien in a story or two could be very cool. There’s plenty of horror to mine in deep space and it stands to reason that more than a few extraterrestrials out there would be of the base-element type, purely evil for evil’s sake. It could be easy to bring Star Trek stories into the very scary realm if they so choose. In this respect, the setting and the plot devices on hand are already well set up to do.
And when I say the franchise is expanding, I don’t mean they are going scary in the short-term but rather trying to appeal to a wider variety of audiences. We’ve seen a resurgence in the procedural aspect with CBS All Access shows like Star Trek: Discovery and Picard coming out to much acclaim in recent years. They’ve also begun to bring on a new generation of viewers with an animated kids show, Prodigy, about to hit screens. Heck, they’ve even appealed to the sophomoric adult crowd with Below Decks. These all greatly deviate from the previous Star Trek stories and show a new interest in branching out.
Before Star Trek tries to scare your pants off, be sure to check out the entirety of their catalog currently streaming for free. It will be a chance to catch up on all the old and new shows before things (maybe) take a darker turn.