George Takei discussed gay Trek storyline with Gene Roddenberry

image.netStar Trek actor George Takei has revealed that he discussed introducing a gay storyline into the 1960s series with its creator Gene Roddenberry.

 

image.netStar Trek actor George Takei has revealed that he discussed introducing a gay storyline into the 1960s series with its creator Gene Roddenberry. The original series of Star Trek had covered some meaty subjects during its run such as war, espionage and inter-racial relationships with the kiss between Kirk (William Shatner) and Uhura (Nichele Nichols). However, one issue the 1960s series didn’t tackle was homosexuality and actor George Takei has revealed he did broach the topic with creator Gene Roddenberry. At the time Takei was not “out” about his own sexuality but felt it was a storyline that Star Trek should tackle.

 

 

You know, we’d dealt with the Vietnam War. We’d dealt with the civil rights movement. We’d dealt with a lot of issues of our times. And I asked him, “How do you feel about gay rights?” He said, “This is an important issue and we want to deal with it.” However, this was while we were on TV. He said, “Our ratings are low and I need to keep the show on the air. All I need is another firestorm and this show will be canceled, and I won’t be able to make those statements that I’ve been making with the show.” He said, “The times will change as we move along, but at this point, I can’t do that.” So again, it was the politic compromise, like what poor Bill Clinton had to make. – George Takei in an interview with Salon

 

It wasn’t just the original series of Star Trek that shyed after from the subject. All the spin-offs avoided it as well, more or less, despite rumours that Deep Space Nine and Enterprise would introduce gay characters. It was widely reported before the launch of Enterprise that it would feature a regular gay character as part of the crew of the starship but this did not happen. In the various fan produced Star Trek material, such as the web-series’, gay characters and gay storylines have been introduced.