Episode 114: Queer Interpretation of Trek


The crew discusses the history of queercoding in Hollywood, and the more recent phenomenon of queerbaiting, then examines Star Trek for signs of each. We also share the characters that we interpret as queer and what positive representation can mean for a community or individual.

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Hosts:  Grace, Andi, Jarrah, and Sue

Editor:  Andi

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  3 comments for “Episode 114: Queer Interpretation of Trek

  1. Jason
    June 17, 2019 at 6:22 pm

    Don’t know if this is confirmed or not but I heard that in the 70s when Shatner and Nimoy first learned about Kirk/Spock they not only approved of it but also added some, what we might today call queer-coding, elements of that pairing in the movies. For example, the scene in the motion picture where Spock is in Sickbay grasping Kirk’s hand (“This simple gesture”) or how they seemed to bicker with each other like lovers in some of the movies.

    Again I don’t know if that’s been confirmed by the actors or production staff but I think it’s cool if they did that.

    • jon
      June 19, 2019 at 5:19 pm

      @Jason – Have you heard of “The Roddenberry Footnote”? Roddenberry’s novelization of The Motion Picture uses the Vulcan term, “t’hy’la” to describe Spock’s feelings about his relationship with Kirk. In a footnote, Roddenberry defines “t’hy’la” to mean “friend, brother, or lover.” Between this and the overtones in the film, the sickbay scene in particular, you can imagine how validated K/S fans must have felt at the time.

      Check out https://fanlore.org/wiki/The_Roddenberry_Footnote

  2. Nobody
    June 19, 2019 at 1:07 am

    Great discussion. I’d like to add that the Hays Code also accidentally created a space for relatively positive, heroic depictions of queer-coded characters — think of Louis Renault in Casablanca or even the Cowardly Lion in The Wizard of Oz.

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