Baptism by Fire

"Baptism by Fire" is the first episode of Starseeker and premiered on The Slightly Warped Website September 29, 2008.

Summary

In the 27th century, the starship Sutherland narrowly escapes from three Nuperi Stingers in an asteriod belt only to encounter a huge alien spaceship which attacks them with a sphere of energy.

On Earth, Captain Kenneth Hiller is offered command of Starseeker on the condition that he intercept the alien spaceship now called Gunboat. Hiller takes Starseeker to gunboat where Hiller, Montoya Ward, Jeffery Travis, Hauvie Cordaine, and Alina Branson are kidnapped and Starseeker is attacked and has to escape with an experimental Quantum Jump Drive.

While the captain and the others are mentally probed, Starseeker encounters the Nuperi and, thanks to communications malfunctions, accidentally tips them off that Gunboat is unprotected. To beat them back, Starseeker uses her Quantum Jump Drive again.

Hiller and the others are released and encounter Senter, a representative of the long-extinct Ja'har'ahan Empire who agrees to self destruct instead of allowing herself to fall into Nuperi hands.

After Gunboat is destroyed, Hiller uses his knowledge of a conspiracy in the Space Force to stay in command and keep his crew.

Episode Development

Starseeker was originally conceived as a Star Trek spinoff series almost fifteen years ago and, over time, morphed into something original when it was repurposed to be a serial followup in the Liamverse.

As far as a follow up to Justice Squad and The Liam Smith Show, Starseeker is unusual in that it is not a straight up comedy, but rather a science fiction drama.

Notes

  • The opening scene with the starship Sutherland is almost word for word from the series original 1994 treatment the only exception is that De Jesus was originally a Bajoran when the script was a Star Trek treatment. The mention of seatbelts was also added to differentiate the series from Star Trek.
  • The Nuperi believe in Fate as a deity much as the Geats and Danes did in the epic Beowulf.
  • In the original treatment, Jaan Brin's name was originally Donner, but that name was used for The Liam Smith Show and Justice Squad character.
  • Travis and Brin's character was originally the same person but in the original treatment, Brin remained on the ship as a passenger and confidant to the captain.
  • Catians are named in honor of Star Trek aliens from the animated Star Trek series.
  • Graciefish, mentioned in this episode but not seen until "All Creatures Great and Small" are named in honor of the whales from Star Trek IV.
  • Although it isn't mentioned in the script, Montoya Ward was raised as a Muslim.
  • Micheal Vera Cruz is from Cuba.
  • The hypernet mentioned in this episode is a next generation version of the internet.
  • In the original treatment, Unnamed was a species that branched from the Betazoids.
  • Alexander Cole was originally going to be a mercenary who would join the crew as a freelancer.
  • The Arthur C. Clarke Station was named in honor of the author who passed away during the writing of this episode.
  • Alina Branson is named after Richard Branson and it is implied that she is a decedent.
  • Kenneth Hiller ran for president and was swift-boated much like John Kerry.
  • One thing about Starseeker that is different from its Star Trek incarnation is that many members of the crew don't necessarily like each other. There are people with petty jealousy, racism, and selfishness.
  • Lt. Pinkston grimly predicts his own fate.
  • Jaan Brin is named after Brin Londo in The Legion of Superheroes.
  • The planet of Malestair from Hiller's vision is a planet mentioned in Star Wars.
  • Lane's battlegroup is made of of the starships Yamato, Eagle, Atlantea, and Ripley. Yamato was the Enterprise' sister ship in The Next Generation, Eagle was the name of the transports from Space 1999, Atlantea is Battlestar Galactica's sister ship, and Ripley is named in honor of the heroine from Alien.
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