Support the Café

Search our Site

Faith Reels: Star Trek Beyond … where others have gone before

Faith Reels: Star Trek Beyond … where others have gone before


By Bonnie Anderson and Dan Webster


This is the 13th feature length film in the Star Trek franchise. It was born on network TV 50 years ago from the mind of the late Gene Roddenberry. It was designed to show a world, a galaxy, that’s overcome xenophobia. The cast was multi-racial and multi-ethnic.


Star Trek made history in its three short years of first run episodes when Capt. Kirk and Lt. Uhura shared a kiss. It was the first time on American network television a white and black actor and actress were shown being so intimate.


‘Beyond’ has a great cast and holds to the philosophy of the original series and ‘Next Generation,’ the 80s TV remake. The movie story line even has elements of two episodes from both series. Trekkers who see ‘Beyond’ will recall “The Omega Glory” (1968) and “The Hunted” (1990). Without spoiling the movie, both plots had former soldiers or a Starfleet officer who became villains.


The villain in ‘Beyond’ is Krall, expertly played by Idris Elba. He’s after an artifact that is the key to a weapon that will easily destroy an orbiting space city on the edge of the galaxy where starships are repaired.


With all the expected humor, resolve and sarcasm between the new, young cast of Kirk (Chris Pine), Spock (Zachary Quinto), Bones (Karl Urban), Scotty (Simon Pegg), Sulu (John Cho) and Chekov (the late Anton Yelchin). You don’t need to be a veteran Trekker to get the story or be entertained. The dazzling special effects and mind stretching scenarios will thrill anyone.


And even the Gospel of John will come to mind (“No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”) when Kirk says, if they die it will be because they are trying to save others.


Star Trek has always looked for the best of humanity or Vulcanity or any of the creatures they’ve discovered on the adventures of the Starship Enterprise. It’s an inspiring trip worth taking.



Bonnie Anderson is a very active lay leader in her parish, diocese and in the wider Episcopal Church. She is an experienced community organizer and lives in suburban Detroit. Dan Webster is an Episcopal priest in Baltimore, Maryland and a former broadcast news executive. But don’t expect only east coast urban perspectives here. As it turns out, they both grew up in Southern California.  They blog about films and faith at Faith Reels



Café Comments?

Our comment policy requires that you use your real first and last names and provide an email address (your email will not be published). Comments that use non-PG rated language, include personal attacks, that are not provable as fact or that we deem in any way to be counter to our mission of fostering respectful dialogue will not be posted.

1 Comment
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Glenn Horton-Smith

The new, young cast also includes Uhura (Zoe Saldana). I distinctly remember key scenes where she showed resolve and sacrifice. I’m sure she showed humor and sarcasm too, it just doesn’t stand out in my memory as much as the resolve and sacrifice. Trying to avoid spoilers here…

Support the Café
Past Posts

The Episcopal Café seeks to be an independent voice, reporting and reflecting on the Episcopal Church and the Anglican tradition.  The Café is not a platform of advocacy, but it does aim to tell the story of the church from the perspective of Progressive Christianity.  Our collective sympathy, as the Café, lies with the project of widening the circle of inclusion within the church and empowering all the baptized for the role to which they have been called as followers of Christ.

The opinions expressed at the Café are those of individual contributors, and, unless otherwise noted, should not be interpreted as official statements of a parish, diocese or other organization. The art and articles that appear here remain the property of their creators.

All Content  © 2017 Episcopal Café