- Created By: Gene Roddenberry
- Launched On: September 8, 1966
- Owner: Paramount
- Tagline: Space, the final frontier…
Original Star Trek Cast
Captain James T. Kirk
Geordi La Forge
Robert Duncan McNeill
Seven Of Nine
Geordi La Forge
Lower Decks Cast
Ensign Beckett Mariner
Ensign Brad Boimler
Ensign D’Vana Tendi
Ensign Sam Rutherford
Captain Carol Freedman
Strange New Worlds Cast
Captain Christopher Pike
Una “Number One” Chin-Riley
Chief Engineer Hemmer
Celia Rose Gooding
Ideal Star Trek Movie Viewing Order
Star Trek has produced thirteen feature films, with a fourteenth on the way. What order should you watch them in? There are two possible approaches.
The first and best way is to watch them in the order they were released. That’s simple, and we’ve provided a handy guide to their release order below.
The second way is to attempt watching them is in a chronological order based on the in-canon Star Trek timeline. And that’s where things get tricky.
Star Trek Movies In Chronological Order
For the most part, a chronological ordering of the Star Trek movies matches up with their release date order, but there are a few outliers. Those outliers are the newly produced reboot movies that took the familiar Original Series and recast them.
Most Star Trek fans consider the reboot movies (which started with Star Trek in 2009) to have taken place in an alternate universe called the Kelvinverse. That would mean they don’t fit into Star Trek’s chronological timeline anywhere.
However, if you wanted to try and make them fit, you could start your chronological Star Trek movie viewing experience with the 2009 Star Trek movie.
The 2009 Star Trek movie tells the story of how (in the alternate Kelvinverse) James T. Kirk first became captain of the Enterprise. Chronologically, that would mean it takes place before Star Trek: The Motion Picture.
And then here’s where things get tricky. The next reboot movie is Star Trek Into Darkness. Star Trek Into Darkness is basically a soft reboot of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. So where can you fit it in? Really you can’t, and since it’s a terrible movie, I suggest throwing it out altogether and skipping it.
And here’s where things get interesting. In the next reboot movie, Star Trek Beyond, the original Enterprise is destroyed. By the end of that movie, the crew gets a new Enterprise, the Enterprise-A.
The original Enterprise is also destroyed in Star Trek III: The Search For Spock. How can we fit these two things together? Simple
In Star Trek: The Motion Picture we are introduced to an all new version of the Enterprise. If you pretend that this new Enterprise in The Motion Picture is a replacement for the one you see destroyed during Star Trek Beyond, the movies almost sort of fit together.
So in order, you’d have watched…
- Star Trek (2009)
- Star Trek: Beyond
- Star Trek: The Motion Picture
From there on out, it’s easy, and you can simply watch all the remaining Star Trek movies in order by release date. When you see the Enterprise destroyed in Star Trek III: The Search For Spock, you’ll be watching the second Enterprise destroyed only for the crew to get a third Enterprise at the end of Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home.
Movie Order By Release
Ideal Star Trek Series Viewing Order
There are two ways to watch Star Trek’s shows: in the order they were released, or in order by where they fit in the franchise’s canonical timeline.
We suggest watching them in order by release date as the ideal viewing experience. We’ve given you a full list of each show, ordered by release date, below.
However, if you choose to attempt a chronological viewing of Star Trek’s various series, here’s how you do it…
Star Trek Series Ordered Chronologically
To watch Star Trek’s shows in chronological order, you’ll have to start with Star Trek: Enterprise. Enterprise tells the story of Starfleet’s first real attempts at exploration and takes place before anything else.
Next, you’ll have to watch Star Trek: Discovery season one and season two. Those two seasons of the show occur between the era of Star Trek: Enterprise and the original series. Stop after Season 2, because at the end of Season 2 the entire show time travels to an era in a far-off future.
So at this point, if you’re watching chronologically, you’d have watched…
- Star Trek: Enterprise
- Star Trek: Discovery Season 1
- Star Trek: Discovery Season 2
You’ll need to follow Discovery season 2 with Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. It picks up right where Discovery left off and follows Captain Pike in his stint about the Enterprise.
Once you’re done with Strange New Worlds, you’re ready to dive into the original 1966 Star Trek series. Watch all three seasons.
When TOS is complete, you’ll be able to start Star Trek: The Next Generation, but stop at season 6. Between season 6 and season 7 Star Trek: Deep Space Nine launches and Captain Picard even shows up in that new series’ first episode.
So at this point, you’ll have watched…
- Star Trek: Strange New Worlds
- Star Trek: The Original Series
- Star Trek: The Next Generation seasons 1 – 6
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine season 1
Stop watching Deep Space Nine after season 1 and go back to The Next Generation so you can finish out that final season. You’ll then be free to resume your Deep Space Nine journey with Star Trek: Deep Space Nine season 2.
After season 2 it gets tricky, as Star Trek: Voyager begins airing in parallel with Deep Space Nine. Voyager actually occurs, chronologically speaking, smack dab in the middle of DS9 season 3. Your best approach is to alternate Voyager and Deep Space Nine seasons until both shows are totally done.
That means your next group of Star Trek shows would be ordered this way…
- Star Trek: The Next Generation season 7
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine season 2
- Star Trek: Voyager season 1
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine season 3
- Star Trek: Voyager season 2
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine season 4
- Star Trek: Voyager season 3
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine season 5
- Star Trek: Voyager season 4
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine season 6
- Star Trek: Voyager season 5
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine season 7
- Star Trek: Voyager season 6
- Star Trek: Voyager season 7
You’ve watched a lot of Star Trek, but the march of time continues. Next up, in chronological order, is Star Trek: Lower Decks and Star Trek: Prodigy. Star Trek: Prodigy takes place between seasons 1 and 2 of Lower Decks, so your best bet is to take them on in this order…
- Star Trek: Lower Decks season 1
- Star Trek: Prodigy
- Star Trek: Lower Decks seasons 2 – 4
You’re almost done. Your next chronological Star Trek series viewing assignment is Star Trek: Picard. Watch all of it. The series takes place many years after the end of Star Trek: Lower Decks.
And then, in the end, you’ll finish your chronological Star Trek series viewing experiment with a show you already started but probably totally forgot, Star Trek: Discovery.
Remember when the Star Trek: Discovery crew jumped into the future? Well, they jumped WAY into the future. In to a future hundreds of years past the end of Star Trek: Picard,
That means you’ll finish your chronological Star Trek series viewing this way…
- Star Trek: Picard
- Star Trek: Discovery seasons 1 – 5
Congratulations, you’ve just watched every episode of every Star Trek series in chronological, in-canon order.
Get educated with our glossary of Star Trek terminology you need to know.
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