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Primitive Culture: A Star Trek History and Culture Podcast

Mar 9, 2023

Music in Star Trek

From Alexander Courage’s “bright galactic beguine” in The Original Series to Jeff Russo’s churning, Game of Thrones-style theme for Discovery, the music of Star Trek has always embodied the spirit of its time, as much as it looks to the future. Rick Berman famously sacked composer Ron Jones...

Oct 3, 2022

Half a Decade of Primitive Culture

Star Trek’s original five-year mission was brought to a premature end in 1969. But over the ensuing half-century and more, the franchise has continued boldly going to new frontiers. By the 1980s, when a second generation of fans came to seek out fresh adventures, the voyage had...

Sep 6, 2022

Cardassian war crimes and The Man in the Glass Booth

For many fans of Deep Space Nine, the penultimate installment of Season 1, “Duet,” is also the show’s first classic episode. A bleak exploration of guilt, responsibility, and forgiveness in the aftermath of war, it’s a story that could scarcely have been...

Aug 25, 2022

Autistic representation in Star Trek

“Perhaps you’re just different,” Tam Elbrun tells Data in the Next Generation episode “Tin Man.” “Not a sin, you know, though you may have heard otherwise.” Both characters—the emotionally sensitive Betazoid and the supposedly emotionless android—have been seen by...

Jul 30, 2022

Star Trek’s Double Troubles

Don’t they say you die if you meet yourself? Our intrepid Starfleet officers had better hope the answer is no, since encounters with doubles, doppelgängers, and duplicates appear to be just part of the job. From the two Kirks in “The Enemy Within” to Lower Decks’s twinned Boimlers,...