Leonard Nimoy, best known for playing the character Spock in the Star Trek television shows and films, died at 83.
Feeling the loss from today’s news of the passing of Leonard Nimoy – forever Mr. Spock.
I am from that generation, the Baby Boomers and yes, James T. Kirk (William Shatner) is my Captain, Uhura (Nichelle Nichols), Bones (DeForest Kelley), Scotty (James Doohan), Chekov (Walter Koenig ) and Sulu (George Takei ) the crew on the Starship Enterprise.
Gene Roddenberry had a vision of a time and space where all races, nationalities and creeds would work together with a common purpose. “…to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no man has gone before.” He set precedence with an African-American woman, and Asian not only a part of the crew, but officers on a Starship. Roddenberry also tackled issues of class warfare, economics, racism, religion, human rights, sexism, feminism, and the role of technology.
Gene Roddenberry also imagined Spock. Half human, half Vulcan. Although Spock embraces his Vulcan, void of emotion logical side, he at times also has to deal with his less logical, emotional, human side. These are some of his best episodes. My favorite is “Amok Time.” Spock goes straight up “anger man” slamming dishes, changing ship’s course and going into blind “kill mode” against Kirk in the “koon-ut-kal-if-fee” fight. Awesome!
I saw an interview with Leonard Nimoy talking about his stint as The Great Paris on “Mission Impossible” and how that experience made him appreciate the complexity of Mr. Spock. As Paris, his character didn’t have those layers. As Spock, he had to balance keeping that stoic face and rational demeanor with storylines that required his ability to convey love, compassion and occasionally frustration in what I like to call his “Menage a trois” relationship with Kirk and Bones. A much more complicated approach to storytelling than the usual TV fare of 1966.
Thankfully we have the Star Trek series, the movies and his body of work to continue to revisit and enjoy. But the fact still remains, we’ll miss you Spock.
R.I.P – You’ll forever “Live Long and Prosper” in our hearts.