The logical place to start would be a brief background on myself. Star Trek has been in my life ever since I can remember. I was raised on it as a child and as an adult, my love for the franchise just grew more and more. Eventually, I became aware of unofficial productions by fans. Originally it started with Star Trek: New Voyages by James Cawley and crew. Then it grew to Hidden Frontier and then finally Star Trek: Continues by Vic Mignogna and crew. However, none of those compared to my all-time favourite Trek Production, ‘Outpost: A Star Trek Fan Production’ originally entitled ‘Star Trek: Outpost.’
Outpost is unlike the former shows mentioned in the fact there are no visuals whatsoever. It’s entirely done via audio as the radio plays of the early nineteen hundreds were. Outpost is created by Tony Raymond and Daniel McIntosh from Giant Gnome Productions. Outpost at this time has a total of 73 episodes, all nearly an hour long some of them having been recorded live at conventions by those in the audience. The series is run in a serialised format, one episode leads into the next and the next and the story constantly flows in this matter. Unlike the traditional storytelling format of Star Trek where it’s a new disaster in a new location with a new species each week, this series focuses on a rather wide cast of characters in a small area of space.
The series takes place in a forgotten area of Starfleet Space near the border of the First Federation. The First Federation having been originally established by The Original Series through the use of the episode entitled ‘The Corbomite Manoeuvre‘ in which Balok trapped the USS Enterprise under the command of Captain James T. Kirk. Kirk promptly tricked the commander of the Fesarius and was granted an audience with him. Following this encounter, the United Federation of Planets and the First Federation opened diplomatic talks and eventually decided on the construction of Deep Space Three. Deep Space Three is a Spacedock-class Starbase, prominently seen in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock.
Deep Space Three was promptly assembled but the First Federation cut contact with the United Federation of Planets when an isolationist group seized government control. As such the Starbase quickly fell into the rut of an ‘Old Western Town’ where no one visits and is barely able to justify its existence. This being said, Deep Space Three has continued to exist up until the 24th Century where the story opens only due to it’s proximity to the First Federation and an area of space known as the Pinchot Expanse, which in and of itself has been rarely explored. As such the only permanent assigned Starfleet vessel is not at all what you’d expect either, an Oberth-Class vessel named USS Chimera (which its name sums it up pretty well, I will explain this in a different blog.)
The series follows a crew that has given up on the escape of Deep Space Three and the Chimera. It’s become common knowledge that an assignment to Deep Space Three is a dead-end assignment. This comes in the form of no promotions, no fun, and no extra privileges by the station’s commander, Captain Montaine Buchanan. Buchanan is basically a Scrooge-type character (ironically enough he plays this role in a three-episode special that follows A Christmas Carol in Star Trek form), where he views both resources and people as one in the same. He spends ‘No More and No Less’ than he needs to, and it promptly becomes his catchphrase or motto. His opposition is that of Lieutenant Commander Gregory Torkelson the Executive Officer of Deep Space Three and the Captain of the USS Chimera (who the series opens up with.) Torkelson represents that of a saving grace, or he does his best to try and make the lives of those at Deep Space Three better by combating Buchanan’s constant resource cutting.
Outpost hosts a magnificent cast of characters AND voice acting. For those wanting to get into a series that is not only evolving with each episode but promises a cast that grows AND learns from their experiences, I highly recommend this series. The series has its moments of exploration, drama, and action, exactly the type of series that Star Trek embodies. You get to see- I mean hear Klingons, Ferengi, First Federation, and other alien races not typically given more than a few episodes at a time. It will keep you entertained for literally hours on end and constantly keep you coming back for more.
Go check out Outpost: A Star Trek Fan Production here: