Friday, May 08, 2009

Star Trek, Updates and Mixed-Experience History Month

People, did you remember that May is Mixed-Experience History month? This is a national "holiday" started by the always fabulous Heidi Durrow, also known as The Light Skinned-ed Girl. Ms. Durrow, one of the creative forces behind the Mixed Roots Film and Literary Festival, posts a new entry every day on her blog about a significant person or event pertaining to Mixed Race people the world over. She does this every year with no repeats and it is so fascinating who she comes up with. It also further illustrates the point that the Mixed experience is not a novelty or an invention of modern society. Human beings have always cross-pollinated, often with life-altering results.

Earlier this week I posted about the dearth of multicultural magazines and then coincidentally I received this link to's listing of multicultural magazines. Most of them are on-line and many of them are no longer in business, but some of them seem to be interesting reads. Take a look and see for yourself.

Finally, Star Trek the movie hit theaters yesterday. Why should you care, even if, like me, you're not a sci-fi fan? Because Star Trek the original television series, broke some serious meltingpot ground by airing the first interracial kiss on television in 1968. That was a kiss between Commander Uhura (Nichelle Nichols) and Capt. Kirk (William Shatner). Here's how it went down:

"Many stations in America's south refused to broadcast the episode, and it was banned in England for almost 25 years. But it wasn't even a romantic moment -- space aliens were using mind control to force the characters to kiss, against their will. The network was so nervous that two versions of the scene were filmed: one with the kiss, and one without it, where Kirk instead dramatically fought off the impulse. "When the camera zoomed in", says Nichols, "Bill crossed his eyes and the director didn't notice it until the next day in dailies. Of course the last scene was unusable and they had to go with the kiss scene, which became history as the first interracial kiss on TV."

Cool, huh? But returning to Wednesday's post about England banning racists, it kind of rings hollow when you find out the British government also banned filmed displays of interracial affection until 1993. Ouch! So if anybody does go see the movie this weekend, let us know if the love is allowed to grow between Black and White in this modern day Star Trek. And if you want to see the original kiss, check it out here on YouTube. It's quite funny.



JBH said...

Wow - Mixed Experience Month AND Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. May is BUSY!

I applaud Star Trek on so many levels. I am a sci-fi fan...but aside from that, I'm so glad that Star Trek really stepped out of the box - the racial identity box, that is.

Not only did it produce the interracial kiss (which seems like a bit of a history-making fluke...but I'll take it!), but how about Sulu??? Actor George Takei (Sulu on Trek) was interned as a Japanese American during WWII as a boy. Afterwards, he made such pioneering strides in acting, representing and inspiring Asian actors after him. See his video here:

LT - thanks again for all your insights:-)

Carleen Brice said...

Banned until 1993?? Good grief alive!

Anonymous said...

But of course, Star Trek, for the 1st inter-racial kiss!

Remember, the five year mission in space, "the final frontier," was "to explore strange new worlds,... to boldly go where no man has gone before."

...or at least, where no network had gone before!


[i DO hope you didn't miss the photo next to my tv of me in my Starfleet uniform, with Capt. Sisco and Lt. Warf!]

LT said...

JBH, Thanks for the info. Now I really want to go see the movie to show my meltingpot support:)

Carleen, I know right?

Dr. A., I missed the photo, but now I really want to see it. Does this mean you're a trekie for real?

Alexandra Zealand said...

You have to see it. I don't want to give too much away, but there's definitely interracial smooching.

And seriously - 1993? That's so depressing.

Anonymous said...

Not a full fledged "Trekie," no. Perhaps a Trekster, or a Trekette. I've never actually gone to a convention, so.....

LT said...

Okay, I'm going to see it. You've convinced me.

Dr. A, a Trekette? i like it.

Beth said...

Oh, the new movie has love between Black and White and then some :) It was a fun movie over all, as well.

scott said...

I love all of the original episodes and frequently get sucked into watching the movies when I really should go to bed, so I already knew a lot about this episode.

I recently read Shatner's autobiography and he says in it that most of his cast mates were not fans of his. Kinda thought of him as a scene stealing hack. It's interesting to consider with the history that the show created.

BTW, love this blog. Thanks for keeping it!