As Heavy has been reporting, there is much fan anticipation on the new Star Trek series, “Strange New Worlds.” This new show promises to go back to basics with a classic trio at the helm of the Enterprise — Captain Christopher Pike (Anson Mount), Number One (Rebecca Romijn), and Mr. Spock (Ethan Peck). When it comes to storytelling, that too will seem familiar.
The season-long arcs that fans have watched on “Discovery” and “Picard” have been blown out of the airlock. They will be replaced by the stories that made “The Original Series,” “The Next Generation,” and the rest work so well. That is, SNW will go back to episodic stories.
Pike and company will encounter a problem (or a planet) at the start of the episode and solve the situation by the time the 48-minute episode ends.
Besides that information, there’s little known about the show beyond the main crew who will serve with Pike, Number One, and Spock.
The Cage… To Now
Fans have been speculation on who would fill out the ranks of this new Enterprise. Some have even taken it on themselves to cast a few of the characters who appeared in the first Star Trek pilot episode — “The Cage.” Among these characters is Dr. Boyce, who was portrayed by John Hoyt in the pilot back in 1964.
NBC turned down “The Cage,” but Gene Roddenberry retooled his show and created a second pilot. “Where No Man Has Gone Before” was well received by the studio executives after numerous changes. One of those was replacing Boyce with Dr. Leonard McCoy (DeForest Kelley) and William Shatner as the captain. Jeffrey Hunter (Pike) did not return to Star Trek after “The Cage.”
For Boyce, some are calling for Jeffrey Combs to bring Dr. Boyce to life on “Strange New Worlds.” Combs is a fan favorite and is known for playing many, many roles in the Star Trek Universe.
WAAAAAAAIT A MINUTE 🤔 pic.twitter.com/CpKybYzMD8
— Andorian Soup (@AndorianSoup) May 16, 2020
Combs responded with a tweet which made some think he wouldn’t want the part. He told TrekMovie later that he’d “embrace” the role if given a chance to play Dr. Boyce.
Thank you. Nice thought, but the chasm between what fans want and what the studios want make the chances of it happening slim to none…. and Slim left town.
— jeffrey combs (@jeffreycombs) May 17, 2020
“Some people were saying, ‘Jeff says he doesn’t want to do it!’ And that wasn’t my point at all,” Combs told TrekMovie.
“My point was there has always been a disconnect and fans and the networks and studios. It goes all the way back and not just with Star Trek. There is often this disconnect, and that is what my tweet was about,” said Combs in the interview.
“What you want and what they want is most of the time not in harmony … I took it as a compliment that people wanted me to be a part of it,” said Combs. “It doesn’t mean I wouldn’t relish it or jump in and embrace it, but I have to be a bit of a realist here, and it is not likely.”
Still, this hasn’t stopped others from continuing to cast their favorite actors in well-known roles for “Strange New Worlds.”
Sam Witwer Wants To Be Sybok
Back in May of 2020, Trek Report challenged fans in a tweet to cast for the part of Sybok, who was played by Laurence Luckinbill in “Star Trek V: The Final Frontier.” Sybok was the brother of Spock (Leonard Nimoy), who acted more like a hippie than a serious Vulcan. The role of Sybok has its share of baggage, and was even called “controversial” by StarTrek.com.
Let’s pretend that Star Trek: Strange New Worlds were to cast an actor to play Sybok, the elder half-brother of Spock (as seen in ST:V – The Final Frontier), who would you pick to play the part? #StarTrek #StarTrekSNW @apm0788 @DannyEpperson pic.twitter.com/yX5VNIwOht
— Trek Report (@trekreport) May 22, 2020
A few fans responded to the challenge, giving their choices, including actors Jay R. Ferguson, Henry Ian Cusick, J.R. Bourne, Tom Ellis, Wil Wheaton, and even Keanu Reeves.
While the fans posted their choices and photos, one of the actors chosen made his intentions known to all.
Let me play Sybok.
— Sam Witwer (@SamWitwer) May 24, 2020
Sam Witwer said that he wanted the part. This is interesting, as Witwer is known throughout the Star Wars community for his starring role in the “The Force Unleashed” and “The Force Unleashed II” video games. According to Wookiepedia, Witwer even provided the voice for baddie Darth Maul for multiple projects and Emperor Palpatine in animation.
Like Combs pointed out, fans don’t always get the casting choices they want. But it would make for an exciting option to bring in Witwer to portray the whimsical Sybok, as Witwer is known for his “strong jaw and impressive physique.”
While it appears that Witwer is all “Star Wars,” he owns a dog named Leonard, named after the original Mr. Spock.
Syfy also asked if Sybok should be added to the roster for “Star Trek: Discovery.” Writer Brian Stillman argued that “if this show is going to feature all of Spock’s family, then it makes perfect sense to include the older half-brother.”
Sybok Could Return
Those who argue that Sybok should be forgotten because Spock never mentioned him (through the original 79 episodes of TOS and four feature films), writer John Orquiola begs to differ. He argues that much like how Spock never mentioned his adopted human sister named Michael, it should come to no surprise that Spock also would have kept his crazy half-brother to himself.
“Kirk was furious at Spock for his betrayal, but they eventually worked together to find the mythical world of Sha Ka Ree and confront ‘God,’ who was an alien imposter,” Orquiola wrote for ScreenRant. “Sybok died saving Spock, Kirk, and McCoy from ‘God’ and, true to form, Spock never spoke of Sybok again.”
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