Since its earliest days, the “Star Trek” universe has been filled with iconic crews played by ensemble casts, but one pair of characters has always had a special place in the hearts of fans. While their first meeting was never seen before, it soon could be.
Captain James T. Kirk and half-Vulcan first officer Mr. Spock, played by William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy, were already friends and crewmates when the original “Star Trek” had its premiere on September 8, 1966. Fans got to see that friendship grow and deepen throughout the run of the series and the feature films that followed, but the starting point of the relationship was always left unseen.
With the development of the prequel series “Strange New Worlds,” fans are finally starting to see some origins of the classic characters and, in an interview with TVLine, co-showrunner Henry Alonso Myers said the first meeting between Kirk and Spock is on the horizon.
A Younger Kirk Emerges
Fans of the J.J. Abrams “Star Trek” films set in the so-called “Kelvin Universe” are already familiar with the young and brash James T. Kirk, played by Chris Pine. In the prime universe of the Paramount+ streaming shows, however, the younger Kirk is played by Paul Wesley, who was introduced in the season 1 finale.
In that episode, Captain Christopher Pike, played by Anson Mount, is given an “It’s a Wonderful Life” style vision of the future in which he avoids the incident that eventually leaves him scarred and bound to a motorized chair. In that future, Kirk is captain of the U.S.S. Farragut.
The episode concludes with Pike returning to the present. However, Myers said we haven’t seen the last of Wesley’s Kirk. In season 2 of “Strange New Worlds,” he will be a lieutenant of the Farragut and cross paths with the Enterprise crew (including Spock, played by Ethan Peck) again.
“[He’s] not yet the person who he is going to be,” Myers said. “He has some stuff to figure out before he becomes that person.”
In the Kelvin timeline, Kirk and Spock have a clash of personalities in their early meetings. At one point, Spock even maroons the young Kirk on a frozen planet. Myers did not reveal the nature of the characters’ meeting in the prime universe but did say it was being taken very seriously by those involved.
“We think about it every day,” he said. “In the moment, when they finally meet, we absolutely make a big moment of it and hope people will enjoy what we come up with.”
Another Familiar Character Returns
In the penultimate episode of season 1, the U.S.S. Enterprise suffered the loss of crew member Lieutenant Hemmer, played by Bruce Horak. Hemmer, an alien called an Aenar, was the ship’s chief engineer. In the finale, another engineer (one with a Scottish accent) is heard over the ship’s intercom system.
Myers confirmed that the voice was that of Montgomery Scott, known to fans as Scotty and played originally by the late James Doohan. While Scotty has not yet been officially introduced on “Strange New Worlds,” most of the final episode was set in the show’s future and allowed him to be teased as something yet to come.
“Obviously, we were jumping forward seven years, to the same era as [the original ‘Star Trek’ episode] ‘Balance of Terror,’’’ Myer said. “We felt like he would be on the Enterprise at that point, but we didn’t want to commit to that character yet because that character is something we’re looking forward to in the future at some point on ‘Strange New Worlds.’”