Wednesday 18 December 2002

Trekkies are not weird obsessives

It's official! We're not weird, we're perfectly normal - we just enjoy Star Trek! Besides, besides, Patrick Stewart is one of the greatest actors alive today. Forget Star Trek, if you've seen him play Shakespeare you'll know what I mean, the guy played the whole of Othello on HIS OWN and pulled it off spectacularly.

The crew of the Starship Enterprise have sprung to the defence of Trekkies -- No, they are not obsessive weirdos who need to get a life.

The message from Troi, Dana and Captain Jean-Luc Picard was the same: stop being mean to Star Trek fans.

Captain Kirk, alias Hollywood Star William Shatner, poked gentle fun at the Trekkies in his book "Get A Life," mocking their meticulous attention to detail in the five television series and 10 Star Trek movies.

But Patrick Stewart, the bald-headed classical actor who plays Captain Picard and bestrides the most famous bridge in space, was much more charitable about the Star Trek devotees.

Stewart, in London for the premiere of "Star Trek Nemesis" and the launch of a new Star Trek Exhibition, did concede: "There are a tiny percentage of Star Trek fans who might be categorised as obsessive."

But he defended the vast majority who revel in one of cinema's longest-running and most successful franchises that has earned more than $1 billion (630 million pounds) at the box office.

"I know fans who would not dream of missing an episode who are Vice Chancellors of Universities, internationally famous classical musicians, opera singers, celebrities, members of President Bush's cabinet, high-ranking members of the military," he told reporters.

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