As a lifelong Star Wars fan, I have to say the new Star Trek movie was pretty wow. Action-packed yet still engaging, it was a fitting addition to the canon unlike certain Star Wars movies (die, “Phantom Menace,” die!) that come to mind. Still, one of the things I always liked about Star Trek was its purposely diverse cast. Call it what you will, but that Star Trek was populated by black and Asian crew members, as well as aliens and Scotty, always seemed cool to me. Way to represent, final frontier. Sure, I’d like more; I always want more. But we are thankful for what we get. And I’ve also always been particularly thankful for Uhura. First of all, kickass name (Swahili for “freedom”). Kickass crazy earpiece-thingamajiger. And in general just a kickass character.
From the lovely Nichelle Nichols to the also lovely Zoë Saldana, Uhura has been portrayed with strength and integrity throughout the series. I mean, how can you not love a woman who, when told by a swashbuckling Sulu (in the original series), “I’ll protect you fair maiden!” responds with a categorical, “Sorry, neither.” Fuck yeah, Uhura. And in the film, she is no less fascinating. Confident, capable and crazy in love with someone supposedly incapable of showing emotion. Oh, girl, I feel you. Representation is one of those things we don’t always like to talk about. It can make for uncomfortable dinnertime conversation with one side yelling whitewash and the other screaming quota. But its impact on the at-long-last represented parties is immeasurable. So thanks for boldly going where no man or woman or space creature has gone before, Uhura. Live long and prosper, and happy weekend, all.