For other uses of the term, see Star Trek (disambiguation).
Trek. The Mother Fandom. The one that boldly took us where no fandom had before. There were other sources before it that had appealed strongly to women, especially Sherlock Holmes and Man From U.N.C.L.E., but nothing grabbed us quite like Star Trek. Trek became the first fanzine-based media fandom, and Kirk/Spock, of course, the first slash pairing, and the source of the word 'slash' itself.
Star Trek: The Original Series
Star Trek: The Original Series has a very active fanbase that started from nearly the moment the show debuted and still flourishes today. Fans have not only kept this series alive after it was nearly canceled after its second season, but also kept it going through many years where there was no new material with their production of fanworks, their organization of conventions and their devotion to their fandom. The popularity of the show in reruns eventually brought about its resurrection as one of the large media franchises.
Although Star Trek featured a large (and diverse) supporting cast, the main characters were a triad of Captain Kirk, Spock and Bones. They serve on the starship Enterprise, exploring the furthest parts of the galaxy and protecting the Federation from hostile aliens. A product of the 1960s, the premise of Star Trek blends the then-popular Western show - in which gunslingers traveled from town to town each week solving problems, with modern concerns like the civil rights movement, Vietnam, and the counter-culture movement addressed non-controversially through the veil of science fiction.
Canceled in the 1969 third season, Star Trek was revived as a series of films in the 80s and 90s by Paramount to counter the rise of Star Wars. Far more successful than the TV series, these blockbuster films funded the creation of the spin off television series.
A current trend as viewed on Fanfiction.net, as well as through other sites, is that ST:TOS is being discovered by a number of people from countries outside of the United States where it originated. Many new fans coming into the fandom have found it through the internet, international syndication or by accessibility to buying the DVDs and other media through large media-selling websites.
Star Trek: The Next Generation
Star Trek: The Next Generation was similar to the Star Trek: TOS concept: a large, diverse crew on a ship called the Enterprise travels the galaxy, meets aliens, and spreads goodwill. This time, the ship was even bigger, and there were more aliens. TNG brings the Star Trek timeline a century forward to the 24th Century, a time in which the Federation that the characters belong to has become a stable galactic power. The militarism of Star Trek is toned down with more focus on diplomacy.
Not successful at first, the show lurched forward until the third season when it found its feet with the introduction of the Borg as arch-villains. TNG ultimately ran an unheard of (for a science fiction show) seven seasons, bowing out by choice to make way for a series of movies starring the cast. Hugely popular, TNG is the only other Star Trek series to rival the main cast in media familiarity.
TNG is what made Star Trek big in other countries, like Germany, where the Star Trek fan clubs in the 1990s grew rapidly and the fan scene was very active.
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine is the third live-action TV show of the Star Trek franchise. It takes place on a space station on the edge of the Alpha Quadrant. DS9 is arguably the most ethnically and gender diverse show in the ST universe, with multiple characters of color and female characters in lead positions. Due to the station setting, it concentrated less on boldly going and more on dealing with the ramifications of changing alliances and reconstruction; political intrigue, religion, and conflicting loyalties are major themes. DS9 was also much darker in its depiction of both the future in general and the Federation in particular.
As a contemporary of Babylon 5, another science fiction show about a space station, these shows were often compared, the fandoms deeply divided, and there was much discussion about the influence of B5 on DS9.
Star Trek: Voyager
Star Trek: Voyager is the fourth live-action television series set in the Star Trek universe. After three shows focusing on a male captain, Voyager features the first female captain as the main character of a Star Trek franchise. The premise of the series was a return to Star Trek roots after DS9 - ship-based exploration with Voyager being stranded and lost in the unexplored Delta Quadrant. As TNG had already established that the Delta Quadrant was the home of the Borg, Voyager's later seasons added popular character Seven of Nine and delved deeply into the backstory of the cyborg baddies.
Star Trek: Enterprise
Star Trek: Enterprise was the fifth TV series in the Star Trek universe. It was a prequel, set earlier in the timeline than any of the other series, and intended to show how the United Federation of Planets came to be. Despite a change in showrunners in the third and fourth season, Enterprise ultimately only lasted four seasons, the first show since TOS to be canceled by the network.
Star Trek (2009)
Star Trek (2009) is the 11th movie in the Star Trek universe. It is a successful reboot of the original series with an alternate timeline that does not affect the preexisting Star Trek canon in the TOS era. Same characters, different actors, new adventures, and everything is possible.
Star Trek Characters and Pairings
Star Trek Conventions
Star Trek Zines
- List of Star Trek TOS Zines Published While the Show Was Still On the Air
- List of Star Trek Zines published 1967-1970
- every Star Trek zine listed on Fanlore can be found under Category:Star Trek Zines
- List of Star Trek Fanzines, an incomplete list
Star Trek Novels
Previously, the Star Trek novels were only allowed to be single-book adventures with no ongoing storyline or characters. With the end of Star Trek on television, these rules were relaxed. Currently, the majority of books published concentrate on the continuing adventures of the characters in the 24th Century storyline. Novel-only spin-off series include the DS9 Relaunch, an ongoing season eight for DS9, and Titan, the adventures of the now Captain Riker on his deep space exploration ship.
Starting with the "New Frontier" series by Peter David, the line expanded to include novel-only series. Other novel-only series include Starfleet Corp of Engineers and Vanguard, set on a Federation space station in Kirk's time.
The tie-in novels are not very popular with many fans and there is much discussion about them, and why they fail, in letterzines. Despite their paracanonical status, some details from the books have become fanon or canon. For example, Hikaru Sulu did not have a first name in canon until Star Trek VI, when a name used in novels was adopted.
Fans have created fansites to collect information about the novels and other licensed Trek-related materials: see below.
Star Trek and the Tensions with Traditional Science Fiction Fandom
The huge influx of Star Trek fans in the late 1960s and the 1970s were an example of some of "free range" fannishness. There were many, many instances of the old school, general science fiction fans being very unhappy with the influx of Star Trek fans who they felt to be huge mobs who were uneducated in the ways of fandom; folks who didn't know the language, didn't know the customs, hadn't "paid their dues," were female (!), hadn't learned at the knees of the "right" people, supposedly weren't interested in "real" science fiction, and essentially invaded traditional fannish places. And vice versa: Star Trek fans found the general SF/sf fans to be hostile, unwelcoming, snobbish, rigid, and overwhelmingly male. The culture clash was huge and long-lived and a major source of discussion.
Star Trek and the Release of Star Wars
The Star Wars fandom enticed many fans away from the Star Trek fandom, something that often created bad feelings between the two.
In September 1977, a Star Trek fan writes about Star Wars and Star Trek:
- "Not all of Star Trek fandom has reacted favorably to Star wars however. Two extremes have already formed, one saying that 'Trek is Dead.' citing Star Wars as its killer; and the other faction maintains a grin-and-bear it attitude, assuming that the enthusiasm will eventually wane, leaving ST fandom intact, and that Star Wars 'is just another rerun movie.' Actually, both groups in those extremes are in a few disappointments. For the people that maintain Trek is dead, there are still those die-hard Trek fen who consider ST the ultimate show of all time. Those types of fans will always hold on to whatever they see in Star Trek to the exclusion of what any competition may offer. Some people are also just too hooked on ST fandom to ever give it up for something else, and others may stay with ST fandom simply to avoid the effort and hassles of 'making it' in another fandom." 
In October 1977, the Star Trek Welcommittee printed a prominent warning to fans who may be interested in writing Star Wars (which had just been released a few months earlier) fiction. This warning doesn't appear to have any basis in example, something the notice mentions. It may be an attempt to keep fans within the Star Trek fandom and an example of the early tensions between the fandoms. It may be a brag by ST fans, pointing out that Roddenberry had been a benign PTB. Or it may have been much more a friendly warning, one with no hidden motives. The text of the warning: "IMPORTANT! Please take note: If you are a zine editor, writer, etc., who is planning to publish/contribute to a fanzine based on STAR WARS...be advised 20th Century Fox may not be quite as understanding as Paramount has been for years about Star Trek. YOU ARE IN VIOLATION OF BOTH 20th CENTURY FOX'S & BALLANTINE BOOKS' EXCLUSIVE LITERARY RIGHTS IF YOU ARE PUBLISHING STAR WARS FICTION. BOTH of these prestigious corporations/companies have the legal right to SUE TO THE FULL EXTENT OF THE LAW anyone publishing SW-based fan fiction (or spin-off fiction). As APOTA has been informed., there have been no known cases of Ballantine taking such action, but do you want to be their test case?" 
For some fans, the change in fannish interests was due to what they perceived of as a lack fresh ideas and boredom. A fan writes in the Star Wars letterzine Jundland Wastes #2, : "Many of us are 'graduates' of ST fandom, and it seemed to me that after a while every other ST story was about 'Kirk dies and Spock goes off his logical rocker,' or 'Spock dies and Kirk just can't bear to live anymore,'... continual variations on one very narrow theme. The 'overkill' on this kind of relationship story (I'm talking here about the friendship relationship, not K/S) got to be 'way too much... One reason I left ST for SW was because SW themes were fresh, not the same old relationship hash."
- "By next year, at the very least, a new fandom will spring into existence: Star Wars fandom. But why a whole fandom for just one movie? Why so much excitement just for two hours of fantasy on film?... The mundane reviewers suggest that people are tired of all the disaster films, the film jammed with social commentary, heavy symbolism and heavy meanings. Or maybe there hasn't been a big escapism film in a long time, and Star Wars luckily cased in by appearing at just the right time? Or maybe the special effects just swept everyone up in an identical wave of enthusiasm? Yet, not only has the mundane public turned out in record numbers to see Star Wars. Fandom has gone all out, too, and not Star Trek fandom either. All of the SF-related fandoms are talking about Star Wars: comix fandom, Sword & Sorcery, even Tolkien... Just to look at Star Trek fandom in particular, the popularity can be traced to the fact that Paramount has stalled far too long in bringing out the new series. Star Trek fandom was ripe for Star Wars to find a willing audience. Another thing about Star Wars is the scope of the film. There is an epic quality to Star Wars... It's a grand tale full of adventure and suspense... Star Trek never had that epic quality. The whole of ST might have, but you might have to think a while before you could grasp it all. Star Wars shows that epic tale in the space of two hours, so that you don't have time to lose a single instant of it... A Star Wars fandom seems almost destined. Zine should appear shortly and one can only wonder when the first Star Wars convention will be. As in the case of ST fandom in the late '60's and early '70's, it will probably be a case of Star Wars appearing as part of the programming in regular ST, SF and Comicons, until a large enough cult exists to hold separate Star Wars cons... Many of them have already instituted SW panels, and Star Wars characters now swamp the costume competitions with a multitude of Lukes, Solos, and Wookies [sic]." 
Star Trek and Sherlock Holmes
- Memory Alpha Star Trek Wiki
- Memory Beta non-canon Star Trek Wiki (for info from apocryphal Star Trek material like novels, comic books, RPG sourcebooks, video games and other licensed work)
- Star Trek Expanded Universe Wiki (for Star Trek fanworks, like RPGs, fan fiction and fan films)
- Complete Starfleet Library: Star Trek Books
- Trek Core (screencaps, multimedia, publicity photos and such for all series and movies)
- Star Trek Port Authority, props, interviews, just about everything else
- Star Trek Fandom in Australia, National Library of Australia, accessed April 22, 2013