Women of Trek!

Gates McFadden: Otherwise known as Mrs. Spiner!

So a funny thing happened on the way to the convention…

This is one of my favorite convention stories… imagine Gates McFadden (Dr. Beverley Crusher on TNG) and Brent Spiner (Data on TNG) on stage talking about an airline flight on the way to a convention and a fan recognized Brent and asked for his autograph…

Fan: (to Brent Spiner) Oh my gosh! I love your show! Please, can I have your autograph?

Brent: Sure. Here you go. But don’t you want her’s too? *motions to Gates*

Fan: Oh my yes, I’m so sorry. I would love your autograph, Mrs. Spiner!

Gates: *signs the napkin as “Mrs. Spiner”*

So somewhere out there is an airplane napkin signed by Brent Spiner and Mrs. Spiner! I would frame that puppy and take it to a convention and ask Gates to resign for real… because seriously? Best. Story. Ever.

I wonder if the fan ever figured out the truth?

This is a quick clip from that convention… not mine… it was posted by YouTuber generousrabbit… wish I had more! I’ll keep scouring youtube because these guys are hilarious together. If you get the chance to see any of the TNG crew appear together do not miss it! They are so charismatic and truly engage the audience. At one point Gates literally walked through the audience and climbed OVER the chairs… then, of course, Jonathan doing his Riker Maneuver… pretty sure I saw a video of that. I’ll have to find it for you and post it. Stay tuned!

“Johnny come back here and do that chair thing!”

Gates McFadden… the woman who changed her name because she was embarrassed to be doing Star Trek.

She changed her birthday too! How can you not love her? Of course, that particular tidbit is courtesy of Jonathan Frakes… fact or fiction… you make the call!

 Truly though, she is always so gracious and kind to fans, like that picture of her with Jacob (yes, we purchased the “official” photo as well… and she signed that for us… although she did spell my name wrong… Cris… who spells it Cris?!) I’ll have to find that one and post it for you. I should probably print out this pic of her with Jacob and ask her if she would autograph it… that would be something special for him to keep!

Funny story about Jacob… we watched Voyager and he hadn’t really paid much attention to The Next Generation (sorry TNG folks) but after meeting everyone he decided he had to watch. I wonder how often that happens? Reverse fandom? Fan of the person then fan of the show… probably often… is that you? Comment below and let us know!

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Whoopi Goldberg: “Dude I want in! I wanna do Star Trek!”

Star Trek blasted through a lot of barriers when it hit the air in the 60s… not the least of which was including a black female in a strong leading role, Nichelle Nichols (Lieutenant Uhura in TOS). Gene Roddenberry didn’t do this out of any sense of political correctness or to prove a point, he simply did it because it was the right thing to do. He just assumed that of course there would be strong women of color in the future, why wouldn’t there be? (And we loved him for it!)

Whoopi to Levar Burton… “Dude I want in! I wanna do Star Trek!

Always a feminist, Whoopi was inspired seeing Nichelle Nichols on TV as Lt. Uhura in The Original Series. In the documentary “Trekkies” Nichelle Nichols recounts a story about Whoopi who upon seeing Nichelle on TV exclaimed…

Momma! There’s a black lady on television and she ain’t no maid!

Over the years the two became great friends and reunited at the 50th-anniversary convention in Las Vegas. Nichelle Nichols tweeted out this pic wishing then President Obama a Happy Birthday… Do you do Twitter? You can follow Nichelle >here!< Seriously though… do you do Twitter? Comment and let me know! Guess I need to jump into that bird’s nest and learn how. tweet tweet

Nichelle Nichols and Whoopi Goldberg

Nichelle Nichols appeared as Lieutenant Uhura in all of The Original Series episodes as well as the follow-up movies. In addition, she has appeared in multiple specials and voiced her character in The Animated Series.

Fun Fact! The name Uhura comes from the Swahili word uhuru, meaning freedom.

Whoopi Goldberg appeared as Guinan in 29 Next Generation episodes plus the movies Generations and Nemesis.

I wish I could take credit for this video… from my favorite convention provider Creation Entertainment… who loves surprising fans (and their guests!) like this… thanks to DTrek55 on youtube for this one!

 

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Marina Sirtis: “Kid. You should go into Politics!”

I must admit when we first started going to conventions Marina Sirtis (Deanna Troy on The Next Generation) was not top of our list to meet. I know. That’s awful. (I’m so sorry Marina please don’t hate us). But once we listened to her on stage and even better met her in person we were hooked.

Beauty is one thing but this gal has a razor sharp wit to go with it and she is genuinely nice on top of all that! So basically you could easily hate her… but instead you LOVE her because she is just so… real person. (Does that make sense?)

Marina Sirtis TNG

So imagine… we are standing in line for days… mom and 10-year-old son… and there are so many people and she must be so tired of making small talk and signing photos and on and on. You’d think it would be a quick name-sign-thank-you-bye… but it wasn’t! She was graceful and thoughtful and she engaged with Jacob (said 10-year-old boy) and talked to him for a bit.

Marina: Well hi there nice to meet you! And who is your favorite character on the show?
Jacob: …
Marina: Oh I know it must be Worf, right?
Jacob: No.
Marina: Okay don’t tell me… it must be… Geordi?
Jacob: No.
Marina: DATA!
Jacob: No.
Marina: Okay I give up. Who is it?
Jacob: I like everyone the same.
Marina: Kid. You should go into politics!

I’m sure she doesn’t remember that in the thousands of fan meet and greets she does but I certainly will never forget and neither will Jacob. Unfortunately, we didn’t get a photo with her that year but that (and an Imzadi photo) is top of our list for the next convention where the stars align, and she is there, and we are there…

Marina Sirtis Publicity Stills

 

So, after all that, does it surprise you that when we got upstairs we didn’t even make it to the room before he collapsed? We were staying on the concierge level (and boy is THAT fun!) you know the one where you get free snacks all day…

…and they have these huge bean bag chairs in the hallway which is basically like putting up a sign “all 10-year-old boys sit here!” I mean seriously they must have boy magnets inside those things. Right?

Jacob Star Trek Convention

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