Star Trek is an American science fiction entertainment franchise created by Gene Roddenberry and under the ownership of CBS and Paramount. Star Trek: The Original Series and its live action TV spin-off shows, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Star Trek: Voyager, and Star Trek: Enterprise as well as the Star Trek film series make up the main canon.
The first series debuted in 1966 and ran for three seasons on NBC. It followed the interstellar adventures of James T. Kirk and the crew of the starship Enterprise, an exploration vessel of a 23rd-century interstellar "United Federation of Planets". In creating the first Star Trek, Roddenberry was inspired by Westerns such as Wagon Train, along with the Horatio Hornblower novels and Gulliver's Travels. These adventures continued in the short-lived Star Trek: The Animated Series and six feature films. Five more spin-off television series were eventually produced: Star Trek: The Next Generation, followed the crew of a new starship Enterprise set a century after the original series; Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Star Trek: Voyager, set contemporaneously with The Next Generation; and Star Trek: Enterprise, set before the original series, in the early days of human interstellar travel, and in 2017, Star Trek: Discovery. Four additional Next Generation feature films were produced. In 2009, the film franchise underwent a relaunch with a prequel to the original series set in an alternate timeline titled simply Star Trek. This film featured a new cast portraying younger versions of the crew from the original Enterprise. Two sequels to that rebooted film have so far followed.
Star Trek has been a cult phenomenon for decades. Fans of the franchise are called Trekkies or Trekkers. The franchise spans a wide range of spin-offs including games, figurines, novels, toys, and comics. Star Trek had a themed attraction in Las Vegas which opened in 1998 and closed in September 2008. At least two museum exhibits of props travel the world. The series has its own full-fledged constructed language, Klingon. Several parodies have been made of Star Trek. Its fans, despite the end of Star Trek episodes on TV, have produced several fan productions to fill that void.
Star Trek is noted for its influence on the world outside of science fiction. It has been cited as an inspiration for several technological inventions such as the cell phone. Moreover, the show is noted for its progressive civil rights stances. The original series included one of television's first multiracial casts. Star Trek references can be found throughout popular culture from movies such as the submarine thriller Crimson Tide to the cartoon series South Park.
- Whoopi Goldberg was seen during the majority of The Next Generation as a supporting character named Guinan who was the ship's bartender.
- Wil Wheaton was the celebrity guest performer on Episode 13-05.
- Earlier in his career, Chip Esten guest-starred on both The Next Generation and Voyager spin-offs.
- Debra Wilson guest-starred as a voice-over on an episode of Deep Space Nine
- Phil LaMarr appeared in the 1999 Star Trek-influenced comedy film Free Enterprise.
- The Drew Carey Show regular Diedrich Bader guest-starred on an episode of The Next Generation earlier in this career.
- Wayne Brady and Drew Carey on A&E cable network's short-lived talk show William Shatner's Raw Nerve.
As with Star Wars, it was inevitable that there would be references to Trek on Whose Line.
- Radio Episode 2
- Wrong Theme Tune: The performers act out a Star Trek scene to the theme from EastEnders
- UK Episode 1-07
- Remote Control: Tony Slattery plays the Star Trek channel
- UK Episode 7-03
- Film and Theater Styles: Star Trek is the third style, Colin says it's time for his "poon farr"
- Episode 2-33
- Props: Colin and Wayne use their props to imitate a transporter
- Episode 7-06
- Props: Ryan pretends his prop is a TNG communicator
- Episode 7-20
- Number of Words: Scene: Captain Kirk, Ryan, has been captured by a Klingon, Wayne; Mr. Spock, Brad, and Scotty, Colin, beam down to the planet to rescue him
- Episode 7-24
- Props: Wayne and Brad use their props as turbolift doors
- Episode 8-19
- Props: Wayne uses a prop to imitate Geordi LaForge from TNG
- Episode 9-09
- Props: Ryan uses a prop to imitate Geordi LaForge from TNG
- Episode 9-11
- Hollywood Director: Though playing a Star Wars scene, at one point Ryan confuses Star Trek for Star Wars, saying "I'm ready to go where no man has gone before."
- What's in the Bag?: Scene: Ryan is Captain Kirk and Colin is Spock, they've beamed down to a planet's surface where they captured and examine a distressed alien life form, played by Wayne
- Episode 10-01
- Two of the four introductions are Star Trek references.
- Episode 10-02
- Props: Wayne uses his prop as a tribble.
- Episode 10-11
- What's in the Bag?: Ryan uses a compact as a communicator, saying "Two to beam up."
- Episode 11-05
- Living Scenery: When Wayne and Scott improvise automatic doors, Colin remarks "They're based on Star Trek."
- Episode 12-15
- Duet: Lea Thompson says she is a big fan of Star Trek and wishes she had a transporter.
- Episode 12-18
- Scenes from a Hat: "Outtakes from Star Trek"
- Episode 13-01
- Themed Restaurant: Sci-fi waiter Colin says "For gods' sake, I'm a doctor, not a wine steward."
- Episode 13-02
- Scenes from a Hat: For the suggestion "Pickup lines in space," Ryan says, "I don't wanna brag but, uh, how 'bout a little Deep Space Nine?" Then Wayne says, "Forget that guy, how 'bout I give you Seven of Nine?"