Way back in the day I belonged to a group called S.T.A.R. San Diego. It was a club of Star Trek fans and enthusiasts. Yes, if nothing else I've ever written, my simple admission to belonging to this club should solidify my Geek Cred.
S.T.A.R. stood for Star Trek Association for Revival. When I joined the group it was comprised mostly of college aged kids. I thought it was amazing that the meetings were held one a month, if I remember correctly, at night on the campus of the local university. It was just so cool to be able to walk on this massive campus and know that I was going to a Star Trek club meeting.
Anyway, the club started long before I joined and, in fact, lasted long after I stopped attending. It saw Star Trek revived as a Motion Picture that most of us enjoyed watching, but were far happier when the second feature arrived at theaters.
Even back then, there was talk of gay characters in the ST universe.
Granted, it was so long ago that i don't know if anyone ever truly thought that a gay ST character might make it into a movie or one of the many ST books, but it didn't stop the discussion.
Finally, Paramount announced there would be a television series. The times had changed ... it was, 1987 after all, and soon it made sense that if we were as evolved in 1987 as we supposedly were, then surely there would be a gay character in ST.
Unofficial "sources" said that, indeed, a gay character would appear at some point. And to us it made sense. ST the original series stood a moral high ground on what was right in society. The episodes dealt with a variety of social issues and it made sense that this one social issue would be addressed.
Upon watching the premier episode of Star Trek The Next Generation, many of us were surprised, that one crew member seen in the background was wearing an old mini skirt the kind that Lt. Uhura might have worn in the original series. The difference this time is that the skirt was being worn by a man. And while he had great legs, it really did seem somewhat ... well odd. Not just in the fact that a man was wearing a miniskirt, but at how impractical the 60s uniform truly appeared.
Regardless, many of us thought that a gay recurring character was only a few episodes away. But that was not to be.
There may have been gay characters in Star Trek, but I don't remember any major characters at the forefront of the series.
So blast past 1987 to 2010, some 23 years later and American Science Fiction television finally has a gay character.
Caprica, the offshoot of Battlestar Galactica has introduced a character who is gay. And the introduction, not to the character but his orientation was handled the best way possible. As a non issue. See for yourself.
Maybe, in a future Star Trek movie we'll see a positive gay major character. But let's hope that future character isn't another 23 years away.