Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Has Hit An Incredible Record For The Franchise

By Nathan Kamal | 7 seconds ago

Strange New Worlds anson mount

It is a good time to be in the Star Trek business. There are currently more shows featuring Gene Roddenberry’s vision of a utopian spacegoing future (or a wagon train to the stars, if you will) on air or streaming than ever before, and Paramount is expanding the franchise into bold new directions which may not actually be liked by fans. However, it appears everyone likes the latest addition to the franchise, Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. The Original Series prequel is currently the highest-rated Star Trek ever ranked on Rotten Tomatoes, holding an incredible 98%. It actually briefly held the much-desired pure 100% Critics rating, but then Slant Magazine critic Pat Brown’s 2.5 out of 4 had to ruin things for everyone. Thanks, Pat. 

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds has only been streaming on Paramount+ for a week, but it is clear that everyone is on board with the retro-futuristic look and feel of the show. For one thing, the visuals of just the opening sequence are some of the most incredibly vivid that Star Trek has ever done. For another, Strange New Worlds is finally giving fans a chance to see the earliest days of the USS Enterprise, before one Captain James Tiberius Kirk came calling. The series is technically a spin-off of the Star Trek: Discovery series, which introduced new versions of Captain Christopher Pike (Anson Mount), a young Spock (Ethan Peck), and First Officer Number One (Rebecca Romijn) in its second season. The enthusiastic fan response at getting a glimpse of the much-hinted at, little-seen Christopher Pike got Strange New Worlds greenlit for a series, and here we are with a near-perfect Rotten Tomatoes score. 

Strange New Worlds is positioned as a throwback to the earliest days of the franchise, with episodic adventures and a sense of optimistic derring-do. In the last decade or so, Star Trek has increasingly skewed to longer storylines and a dark vision of the future, best seen in the well-regarded, but very grim Picard series. However, with that Patrick Stewart vehicle ending after its upcoming third season, Star Trek might be returning to its roots with Strange New World. It is notable that the second most highly ranked Star Trek show on Rotten Tomatoes is Prodigy, the animated, youth-oriented new series; perhaps fans are tired of seeing the moral foundation of the future being portrayed as riddled with compromise and secret space Gestapos and are just looking for some hope again. 

Of course, this can all be taken with a bit of a grain of Andorian salt. Strange New Worlds is only just beginning and the excitement of the pilot episode might fade after a few more adventures. However, it is pretty nice for everyone to see Christopher Pike up and about and not communicating solely through a series of yes/no beeps, because apparently, morse code has not survived into the 23rd century. The favorable response to Strange New Worlds is hopefully a sign of a new direction for the franchise, even if it does mean looking back to the past.