It has been 50 years since Captain Kirk and the crew of the Starship Enterprise boldly went where no one had gone before.
The ground-breaking show, which debuted on Sept. 8, 1966 on NBC, was canceled three years into its mission.
"Star Trek'" showed a utopian future for the universe in which a cast of international fictional characters, including Americans working side-by-side with Russian and Japanese characters in the middle of the Cold War, featured exploration rather than fighting, as well as peace between not only the people of earth and aliens, like the Vulcan character Spock, but also among races on Earth itself.
At a time in American history where race relations were still split, the show featured the first televised interracial kiss in America between Lt. Uhura, portrayed by Nichelle Nichols, and Capt. James Kirk, portrayed by William Shatner, CNN reported.
The series found new life on the big screen after a failed attempt to resurrect the space exploration show in cartoon form on the small screen.
Starting with "Star Trek: The Motion Picture," in 1979, the franchise has now spanned nearly four decades and a total of 13 films and multiple television versions, including "Star Trek: The Next Generation" and "Star Trek: Voyager."
And while the latest movie, "Star Trek Beyond" released in 2016, has replaced William Shatner with Chris Pine in the role of Kirk, the series shows no sign of stopping half a century later.
"Star Trek" will have a new life on television again in 2017 on CBS, with "Star Trek: Discovery."
Thank you for reading the Springfield News-Sun and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to your daily ePaper and premium newsletters.
Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Springfield News-Sun. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.