After fifty years, six TV shows, and thirteen films… it’s safe to say Star Trek has become a fundamental pillar of our culture. The best Star Trek series make us reexamine ourselves and our society, which has been key to the franchise’s ability to stay in our hearts and minds after so many years. Really, Star Trek has the capacity to be just about any genre it wants: an exploration show, an action thriller, or a character piece. Anything works, as long as the writing and acting are good enough.
But sometimes… the quality of Star Trek varies. After all, with hundreds of episodes produced they can’t all be “City on the Edge of Forever.” Sometimes you get a “Threshold” or a “Spock’s Brain.” But which series are the best? And for that matter, how do they rank against the films? Well, now’s your chance to help us figure it out. Below, Trekkies ranked have every Star Trek series and movie ever released. Where do your favorites place? Check the list and vote for what you think are the best Star Trek series and movies!
The first two seasons may be rocky, but seasons 3-6 (AKA the Riker's Beard seasons) are some of the best science fiction TV ever made. There are too many standout and classic episodes to count, and it launched the careers of many notable TV writers including Ron Moore and Naren Shankar. The crew of the Enterprise-D has become just as iconic as their original counterparts, and in many ways made a bigger impact on the franchise as a whole.
The first two seasons are just spectacular television, full of subversive (for the time) storytelling and imaginative world building. The crew of the original Enterprise was so idealistic and charming it was hard not to think of them as family. The stories themselves, including "Balance of Terror," "Journey to Babel," and the "Devil in the Dark" have become true television classics. The third season doesn't quite reach the pinnacle set by the two preceding seasons, but it still isn't too bad.
In many ways, this movie was the best and worst thing to ever happen to Star Trek. Yes, its story about Khan seeking revenge and Kirk suffering from a mid-life crisis allowed for some of the most human and emotional moments of the franchise, but it dared every film after to live up to its perfect mix of character drama and smart action. It revitalized the franchised even if it had to kill its most beloved character to accomplish the goal.
#8 on The Best Movies of 1982
One of the few attempts Star Trek ever made at comedy that actually intentionally worked. The idea of a probe looking for humpback whales is a little weird, but it’s played with just the right amount of creepiness and mystery that you don’t question the premise. The fish out of water moments in the second act have become comedy classics in their own right, from Kirk screaming “Double dumbass on you!” to the hysterical chase sequence in a hospital, to Scotty desperately trying to use a Mac. It’s such an earnest movie with a good message and a pure heart, you can’t help but love it…
#21 on The Best Movies of 1986