Star Trek: Argo

My idea for the next Trek series

I love Star Trek. I want new Star Trek on TV. I want to see a new series written in long-form with an epic unfolding story that takes seasons to tell. I have ideas I want to share with other fans.

The Backstory

First, let’s review what we know about the state of the galaxy as seen in DS9, Voyager, and the most recent films. Dates and quotes taken from the canon Star Trek Timeline.

2375, end of the Dominion War
“With the Klingon military in ruins, and the Cardassian Union shattered, The Federation and Romulan Empire emerge from the conflict as the only major powers with the influence to affect Alpha Quadrant politics.”

2378, Voyager returns to Earth
The Borg have suffered a tremendous — if not crippling — blow and 7 of 9 brings her vast knowledge of transwarp and other Borg technologies to Starfleet.

2387, destruction of Romulus
Following this tremendous disaster, the once powerful Romulan Empire is greatly diminished and leaves the Federation as the only superpower in the Alpha Quadrant.

The Extrapolations

In a quadrant of broken, demoralized empires only the shiny happy Federation is left standing tall. Sounds like the perfect time for some new treaties and alliances to bring Klingons, Romulans, Bajorans, and even Cardassians into the utopian fold.

Along with all this political cooperation comes a revolutionary technological advancement: the Alpha Quadrant Transwarp Network designed by 7 of 9 based on her knowledge of Borg transwarp technology. Subspace conduits link systems, stations, and homeworlds to bring about a new era of access and connectivity. Cultures weakened by war and disaster begin to merge more and more in the intergalactic melting pot.

Of course not everyone wants to sell out and join the Feds. Klingons have honor, Romulans have secrets, Cardassians have arrogance, Bajorans only follow the Prophets, etc. So while some folks join together, others rebel and scatter off into the depths of space.

The Golden Age of a connected Alpha Quadrant lasts for 50 years and then, DISASTER!

The transwarp network collapses in a fiery explosion that destroys thousands of ships and kills millions of people. As the debris settles and sensors scan the destruction, something horrifying is found: not only is the transwarp network completely sealed and inaccessible, but the resulting shockwaves have altered space in such a way that even standard warp drive no longer functions.

Space travel is brought to a screeching halt. Every world, system, and vessel is stopped and isolated without warning or preparation.

Subspace communication is also disrupted due to the network collapse with signals taking years to reach their destinations — if they ever reach them at all.

After decades of the races mixing and becoming accustomed to near instantaneous travel across vast distances, the quadrant finds itself divided up with members of all races suddenly trapped wherever they were when the transwarp network imploded. Supply lines are cut off, crews are stranded, communications are silenced, and entire worlds that once enjoyed the benefits of access are now alone.

The New Series

300 years pass. Each surviving pocket of civilization has grown and changed based on the unique combination of resources, individuals, and circumstances. Cultures merge, technologies evolves, and the result is a range of hybrid races that are at once familiar and new:

Klingons + Bajorans = Birds of Prey crewed by warrior monks

Romulans + Cardassians = super spies constantly entangled in cloak and dagger games

Klingons + Ferengi + (arid planet with limited resources) = monetary driven warrior society with gladiatorial games

Cardassians + Federation + (literature conference at time of disaster) = bookish culture of art and empire.

Among the thriving survivors is a former Federation planet with a large number of Vulcans, Romulans, and Bajorans who have access to spacecraft, plentiful energy supplies, and charismatic leaders. Together they build an inclusive society (Federation) focused on scientific development (Vulcans + Romulans) and fortified by faith (Bajorans). In this cradle of civilization a new type of propulsion is eventually created that can overcome the damaged space that has prevented warp drive for centuries.

A breakthrough of this magnitude in space travel hasn’t been know since the invention of the original warp drive. This new ultra-warp engine becomes the pulsing heart of the Starship Argo.

The Starship Argo

Named after the legendary ship in the ancient Greek myth of Jason and the Argonauts, the Starship Argo is the culmination of decades cooperative innovation.

29 decks, four ultra-warp nacelles, a host of artificial intelligences, and one intrepid crew on a mission to learn the fate of the quadrant.

Captain Ada Contee

a strong human woman of color with traces of non-Terran ancestry who commands through wisdom and with a commitment to self-reflection and self-betterment.

First Officer Denzi Dax

an intersex Trill (with a familiar symbiont we all love despite the Ezri host) who serves as the captain’s queer confidant and moral compass.

Chief Engineer Tao

a male-identifying artificial intelligence engineer who is integrated into the ship’s systems as well as having a physical android form.

Lt. Commander Cel Vilkir

a female Romulan science officer who identifies more as Vulcan.

Lt. Commander Leto Ensak

a male Vulcan medical doctor who identifies more as Romulan.

Security Chief Valen

a female humanoid with fantastic physical and mental abilities that are gradually revealed over time.

Lieutenant Tavor Kell

a male Cardassian+Klingon bard who pilots the Starship Argo while also recording her trials and deeds.

The First Episode

An opening montage narrated by the precise, alto voice of Security Chief Valen recounts the events of the past 350 years. This history covers the end of the Dominion War, the Golden Age of Connectivity, the Great Fracturing, and finally the slow rebuilding that has brought us to “present day.” She ends the recap with a line that defines the driving force for the series:

And now we do what we’ve always done: explore the dark depths of space in an attempt to better understand ourselves.”

Fade in to a dark subterranean cavern with two people carrying burning torches and moving carefully through the rough, rocky space. Captain Contee and her first officer, Commander Dax, soon reach an open space with striking, archaic drawings covering the walls. They stand in awe for a moment before remarking on the meaning of these ancient drawings for both the people who made them and for the people of the 28th century.

“I admit, Captain, the torches do add a nice touch,” says Dax admiring the closest drawing. “I’m glad we brought them.”

“I wanted to see the figures as they did,” says Contee in her resonating voice. “Shapes moving between darkness and the light.”

As they delve into questions about the past, a comm link chirps and Captain Contee is informed that the Starship Argo’s core is online. The pair nod at each other, extinguish their torches and beam out…

…to appear in the glowing transporter room of the Argo. Chief Engineer Tao, wearing a plaideweave and gray uniform, stands ready and greets the officers with an “all ship’s systems ready” message.

So begins a journey that will take us to encounter the hybrid cultures of the new Alpha Quadrant, as well as the isolated members of the old races who fled at the start of the great merging. Why did the transwarp network collaspse? Can it ever be restored? What is the fate of Earth and the other homeworlds? All of these are questions we will explore. Heck, even Captain Sisko who we last saw hanging with the incorporeal Prophets may make an appearance!

Star Trek: Argo is the colorful, challenging story for our time. Race, gender, identity, and culture are all aspects to pick apart, smash to bits, and rebuild. In this way, we continue the tradition of boldly going exactly where we need to go.