"I cannot live without books: but fewer will suffice where amusement, and not use, is the only future object." -- Thomas Jefferson

Friday, January 10, 2014

Reprint of SFF-World Post -- What Do Star Trek and Zorro (TV shows) Have in Common?

As a newly self-published author, I have been neck-deep in research in the various aspects of self-publishing.

Research can take some surprising turns. At night, I would relax and watch old Zorro TV shows on YouTube. Then, during an internet search, I found a self-published biography of Guy Williams, the actor who played Zorro, by Antoinette Lane (Guy Williams: Man Behind the Mask). I got the eBook in Kindle. Long story short, Ms. Lane did a massive amount of research and produced a great biography of Mr. Williams.

Anyway, I continued to watch the old Zorro shows and thought back to my first introduction to the show when I was a child. As a child, I was in love with Zorro, the horses, the action scenes, and the concept of good triumphing over evil without understanding the true nature of evil. Yet, when I think back, that show had a impact on my life, in the ideas I hold about good and evil, and even about the Spanish culture and American history.

Today, I look at this show and see very adult themes presented: tyranny, slavery, deception, crime, history, romance and more.

Zorro was produced in the late 1950s by Disney. Star Trek came out in the late 1960s, produced by Desilu. When Star Trek came out, it was perceived as unique, yet, the creator, Gene Roddenberry, described it as "a wagon train to the stars." A western in space.

I am a Star Trek fan and I appreciated how the stories presented classic struggles to understand and overcome ideas like prejudice, intolerance, tyranny, slavery, crime and more. Star Trek also promoted exploration not just of space but of the human mind.

What made Star Trek truly successful in my mind was that it presented classic stories that explored human nature.

When I look back at the Zorro TV shows, I feel that they also presented classic stories that explored human nature.

Both shows influenced my outlook on life.


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