For 55 years, the Star Trek franchise has carried with it a reputation of social responsibility. As one of the first TV series in the 1960s to address civil rights and racial tensions within science fiction metaphors, the bold voyages of the various starships were often directed inward, toward the human condition.
Since the beginning, Star Trek has always worked on a lot of different levels, for various demographics. Watching different kinds of Star Trek with your older kids can be fantastic. And, it’s not like kids like Trek because there’s a ton of moral and ethical dilemmas. Children like Star Trek because the ships are cool, beaming is awesome, and it makes space travel seem cozy and fun. But, until now, there hasn’t been a Star Trek series designed for children. Trekkie historians may claim that the 1973-1974 Star Trek: The Animated Series was a kids’ series because it ran in a Saturday morning kids’ time slot, and it one an Emmy for children’s TV. However, that series was written and designed to simply take the format of the ’60s series, and translate it into a cartoon. Meaning, The Animated Series was kind of designed for children, but only insofar as it was adapted from the ’60s show.
But in the Fall of 2021, kids who love to daydream about starships will get their very own Star Trek, made for them. From Nickelodeon, the new series Star Trek: Prodigy will follow the adventures of some alien tweens and teens who discover an abandoned starship — the USS Protostar — and set off for adventure. Their guide, and surrogate parental figure, will be a hologram in the form of Captain Janeway. As ’90s kids will remember, Janeway was Trek’s first female captain on Star Trek: Voyager and her new holographic incarnation will again be played by Kate Mulgrew.
The trailer just debuted at Comic-Con @Home. It’s short but dreamy. Oh, and the namesake of that new ship is a great metaphor for children. According to Wikipedia, a protostar, “is a very young star that is still gathering mass from its parent molecular cloud.”
Here’s hoping the adventures of the USS Protostar in Star Trek: Prodigy live up to the hopes and dreams of the Final Frontier! Prodigy hits Paramount+ sometime in the Fall of 2021. Watch the new trailer below.