Andre Bomanis in The Space Review asks ”Does Star Trek make space travel look too easy?” His essay begins —
In an interview with a reporter from the Associated Press, Scott Pace, the current director of the Space Policy Institute at The George Washington University and a former NASA associate administrator, was asked to comment on the April 12th failure of the North Korean rocket launch. He noted that sending a vehicle into space is still a significant technical challenge, and added, “In many ways, the worst enemy of NASA is Star Trek… Captain Picard says ‘engage’ and the ship moves. And people think ‘How hard can this be?’” Filmmaker James Cameron supposedly made a similar comment about Star Trek’s depiction of space travel several years ago.
Sounds like arrant nonsense to me. Did somebody forget about those literally dozens of episodes in which “the engines canna stand the strain” or depend on a crisis exacerbated by some other technical breakdown?
And how odd it is to see this coming from someone like Andre Bomanis, who is well aware of the show’s intricacies, having been (so it says in the endnotes) “a consultant, writer, and eventually a producer for Star Trek, [who] has written or co-written some 20 produced episodes of Voyager and Enterprise.”
[Thanks to Martin Morse Wooster for the link.]