An Open Letter to Harve Bennett... In Fandom's Defense

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Open Letter
Title: An Open Letter to Harve Bennett... In Fandom's Defense
From: Ruth S
Addressed To:
Date(s): 1990
Medium: print
Fandom: Star Trek
External Links:
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An Open Letter to Harve Bennett... In Fandom's Defense was an open letter by Ruth S addressed to Harve Bennett and Star Trek fandom in general.

The open letter was printed in Interstat #150, very shortly after Harve Bennett stepped down from his Star Trek duties after ten years.

This open letter was a reaction to Harve Bennett's Farewell Open Letter.

Text of "An Open Letter to Harve Bennett... In Fandom's Defense"


Dear Mr. Bennett: It is with regret that I learned of your departure from Paramount and severance of your association with STAR TREK. At both the conventions where I had the privilege to see and heat you personally (SPACE TREK and CONTINUUM), you effectively conveyed both your concerns for and your love of STAR TREK, as well as your respect for its fans.

Frankly, however, as a fandom that equated STAR TREK letter-writing campaigns with survival and preservation and not merely an amusing pastime, we just weren't used to respect from a studio that had teased and jerked us around emotionally with 10 years of broken promises. How were we supposed to recognize the one person who would be different...who would make a difference?

Besides, with all due respect, I've got to say that you have the darndest way of seeking to earn a trust! First you give us back true Classic TREK in STAR TREK II...only to take Spock from us. Then, you return Spock in STAR TREK III, only to take Enterprise from us. Understand, plot advancement or not, you don't much earn trust by killing off loved ones. The studio giveth and the studio taketh away; fan, remember your place.

And, remember that Paramount would never commit in advance to another STAR TREK film until the receipts were tallied. So, for all collective fandom knew, any one of these films might have been the last.

Then, along comes STAR TREK IV, and everyone Is waiting for the shoe to drop again....what are they going to take away from us this time? But you didn't take anything away, and the $$$ receipts were phenomenal! Uh-oh....

Now they're going to do STAR TREK V surely they'll get us this time around. But you didn't so, hey, maybe we can trust this Harve Bennett fellow after all. But the receipts were lousy (per studio standards) for whatever reasons, leaving Classic TREK where? Back, once again, to groveling to the studio for the survival of Classic TREK in yet another letter-writing campaign.

I don't know, whom do we trust? Whom do we listen to? I'm not a fool, but I sure can't figure this out. Fine, I'm willing to dismiss convention rumors and gossip in favor of giving you the benefit of the doubt and a certain measure of trust, but when you have cast members (George Takei, for one) spearheading a write-in campaign (and, let's face it, they've earned a measure of our trust, too), how is your average fan supposed to be aware of, much less know how to interpret studio politics???

I guess I've said enough. It's just that I'm so, so sorry to see you move on from STAR TREK with the feeling that fans you had gifted for 10 years had betrayed you. It's all history now, anyway, but I just wanted to go on record. Rest assured that your indelible imprint on STAR TREK will be forever appreciated. I thank you again for your many loving and innumerable gifts to STAR TREK and its fans (especially the dignity) and wish you well as your own adventure continues....