Still, all of the pieces were there. From the outset, I knew that I wanted to do something on a massive, epic scale. I wanted
big battles, awesome characters, an intricate plot, and a bran muffin. Well, not really. I'm not a big fan of muffins. Anyway...
sometime in late 1997, I began to toil around with the notion of bringing my ideas to life. And at the time, I had some very,
VERY big ideas floating through my mind. Most of them did, in fact, make it to the Internet, but... as you shall soon see, my
imagination quite frequently went overboard, and many of my grandiose visions had to be scaled back.
My original concept for the series has always been the same. I have always wanted to deal with the Elorg, their emergence
from subspace, and the ramifications that would have for the Federation and its allies. That never changed. However, every
other facet of the series DID change. The ship, the crew, the names and locations... EVERYTHING changed.
The First Frontier...
The earliest versions of TFF took place aboard the USS Stardust, under the command of Captain Christopher Alan. Other
crewmembers included Matthew Badger (first officer), Kristen Hawke (Operations), Erick Logan (Engineer), Amy Wrighton
(Doctor), Bator (Tactical), Teron Faladon (no real purpose, as far as I can tell), Erin Hathatway (Helm), Kendall Johnson
(Science), and Kielar Maas (resident Elorg).
None of these characters are really too interesting. In fact, aside from operate their workstations, they didn't do much of
anything. They were little more than pawns in my plot. They didn't see much in the way of character development... not that
there was much character to develop. They were all of them slight variations of the Alan Christopher we all know and love.
Even Kendall was an Alan Christopher clone. Doctor Wrighton was a little bitchy, Kielar Maas was noble and mysterious (he
was also a wanted criminal, charged with murder in the Elorg Bloc). And Kristen Hawke was a former terrorist. I'm sure THAT
went over well at Starfleet Academy. "ADMIRAL: So, you've slaughtered countless thousands of people on your homeworld?
Well, that MIGHT be a blemish on your record... But Starfleet is a very forgiving place!"
Our primary villain was an Elorg by the name of Gorvak To’Chall. And he was basically little more than an unfunny version of
Doctor Evil. He always ranted about conquering the Federation and all that good stuff, but he never really had a reason for his
evil ways. The restoration of the Elorg Bloc wasn’t really a major plot point. The Elorg came out of subspace, and To’Chall just
wanted intergalactic domination and the death of all humans. You know, the basic evil plan. “HISTORIAN: So, Mr. To’Chall,
why are you conquering the galaxy? TO’CHALL: Oh, it’s just a hobby. I’m actually just a clerk at Starbucks. Yeah. Been there
The plot itself wasn’t that much more interesting. It was essentially an Elorg invasion of the Federation. The two fleets would
meet, have a little battle, exchange some harsh words, have another battle… exchange a few more words… and so it
continued. There wasn’t very much to it. After the Elorg War ended, the Velora arrived, and the process repeated. It was the
exact same thing. Literally. I had planned to do this for seven years. Quite frankly, I don’t think it would have lasted much
longer than two.
Still, oblivious to this smoldering pile of dung, I forged ahead and created Star Trek: The Final Frontier. Back in 1997, I wrote
everything out in script format. It was incredibly easy to crank out an episode in the said format; I could have completed all
seven seasons in less than a year. But unfortunately, the format lacked both eloquence and emotional resonance. It was just
one piece of bland dialogue after another, and it did very little to flesh out the story and the characters. By the time I
reached episode 35, I came to the realization that TFF wasn’t quite what I had imagined. In fact, in retrospect, it was utterly
wretched. It was fan fiction of the worst kind.
|The original Starlight. I'll have more on
this later, and why it never made it to the
After an eventful five year run from 1993 to 1997, The original Star Trek: The Final Frontier came to an end on July 15, 1997
with the incredibly shocking “Denouement,” in which everyone meets a bloody demise at the hand of Species 8472. At that
point, just about everybody involved in the series had lost interest, and were ready to move on to bigger and better things (in
this case, however, that did not mean movies. It meant… work, school, females (copious amounts of shagging), etc.). But one
intrepid soul was NOT ready to call it quits. But clearly, I could not perform a show of ONE in my basement without someone
placing me in a Mental Institution, so… it was back to the drawing board. Literally.
I started to tinker with CGI. Sadly, I did not have an actual 3D program, so I essentially had to download other people’s
pictures and… cut and paste them into my own. The results were… crappy, to say the least, but for some reason, people liked
what they saw. Since CGI was still new back then, I suppose I could get away with making a crappy image. Not the case
today. You guys are MUCH more demanding. But while my images were interesting, the stories that went with those crappy
pictures tended to get a bit more attention. So, I was hit with a profound idea… why don’t I write these stories out? And in
late 1997, I embarked upon a quest to do just that…
I quickly decided that it would be called “Star Trek: The Final Frontier,” and would be based upon our adventures of the past
five years. Thus, I sifted through all 185 episodes and made a list of usable material… I mean, after five years, creating this
new series should have been a piece of cake, right? Wrong… Our original five-year mission was so UNLIKE Star Trek that it was
essentially useless. Among the more useless plot points:
• Brain Mites was a terrible disease that struck with frequency. It turned EVERYONE into babies. Obviously, I couldn't import
that idea into TFF. I would have been laughed off the Internet faster than 0.63 seconds.
• The Missing Bajoran Cookie Cutter (a “heralded” artifact lost to the Cardassians). There was a considerable story arc related
to the artifact's retrieval. In retrospect, I doubt the Federation would waste its resources on a cookie cutter, even though the
cookies it made were quite good.
• Election coverage. I'm all for democracy, sure... But I can't STAND election coverage. I avoid CNN like the plague in early
November. Unfortunately for me, Matthew (mentioned previously in this guide) seemed to enjoy the elections. So between
all of the wars and fighting, we would have dozens of episodes covering the Federation's election process. There was even an
episode called "The President." Of course, since nobody was content to be an Ensign or a Captain... or even President, the
Federation was given a King. Me. ...Obviously, that whole election bit had to go.
• The Romulan Wars were another issue that I needed to address. In the original TFF, we fought four pointless wars against the
Romulans in five years, one of which included the legendary farting Romulans of Doom—and let me tell you, that was a lethal
weapon if I ever smelled one… Phew! Anyway, I knew that I would need to scale back the Romulans (and their gas) in the new
• The early adventures also included a fair amount of Tropical Storms. In space. We weren’t exactly concerned about science
back then, but I had to be concerned about such things in TFF, so… obviously these massive tropical systems had to go.
• People also tended to get phasered a lot down in the basement. That was necessary to an extent, because we needed
somebody to play the invading aliens—like the farting Romulans—but there were plenty of episodes when the Captain was the
only man left. I mean, that’s nice and heroic, but once the ship was destroyed and the invaders were repelled, everyone got
to go to sickbay. Despite the fact we were in the 24th century, conditions in sickbay were rather primitive. So, the entire
senior staff was extremely wounded in every episode; depending on who was playing the Doctor that week, things would
proceed from there. I frequently found myself chained to a table when my sister held the position. SISTER: “Let’s chain Chris
to a table and go play Barbies!” HER LITTLE FRIENDS: “Okay!” And that was that.
• The ship also got destroyed in every episode. Almost literally. Exciting as it was, I knew I couldn’t carry that particular plot
point over to my new series.
• We also had dozens of Super-Mega Ships that were twice the size of a planet. The Federation had a few super ships. The
Romulans had a ship twice the size of Mercury. Even the Bajorans had a warship capable of blowing up a small moon. Cripe.
Not surprisingly, THAT had to go.
Suffice to say, I didn’t have a lot to work with in the beginning. In fact, I imported very few ideas from our basement
adventures—and those that I did bring along retained little more than their names: the Elorg, the Velora, the Phobians, the
Zhargosia Sector, and of course… the Stardust.
|The very first image I ever posted on the
Internet. It's supposed to be the final
battle in "Denouement," but really... it's