How Star Trek: Lower Decks Made the Franchise Funny Again

“Laughter makes us appreciate things more,” add Cordero. “Any time you can have fun with something, that makes you feel more human. If you can find what’s imperfect about what you love, it makes it more perfect, more relatable to you.”

To laugh at something like a fandom doesn’t necessarily diminish its value. Instead, it brings the fan to the point where they become closer to the fandom. It makes it more accessible and attainable.

“We watch things,” Cordero continues. “We love Star Trek and we love the aspects of it because sometimes we think they are unattainable in that what we hope to be. It feels so serious to ‘get there.’ But the more you can joke around and have fun with it, or see the flaws like the way Lower Decks is? Then you start to think, ‘oh, that could be me.’ That possibility makes the play more fun.”

If there is a word that describes the style of humor in this show, it’s “belonging.” Something every Star Trek fan can identify with in terms of being part of a crew, or even the Vulcan philosophy of IDIC, Star Trek: Lower Decks, laughing at Easter eggs and inside jokes that gives fans a personal sense of belonging.

“The writing is so great that the fans are in on the joke with us,” Quaid says. “You know – the koala, what does it know? All the bits from Season 1, I love that it’s something that Trek fans can come together with and a have a great time.” 

The historical aspect of Star Trek can be one of its most intimidating features. With nine iterations of the franchise (and more on the way), multiple feature films, dozens of novels, hundreds of comics and a plethora of other apocryphal formats, sometimes it’s good take a pause and allow a show like Lower Decks to include relevant moments in the franchise’s history as nuggets of pure comedy in order to pause and reflect on the nature of the science fiction material.

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