There are two things we can conclude from this trailer for Star Trek Beyond. One, they’re not kidding about the Enterprise being finished, as this trailer well and truly underlines just how space-unworthy it is after aliens pull a thousand hit and runs on it. And secondly, Rihanna doesn’t really fit in with a Star Trek aesthetic.
Why, precisely, the pop star’s latest track is laid over the latest Star Trek Beyond trailer is a question best left to the Paramount marketing department. Mostly this trailer is showing us what we’ve seen before; Kirk (Chris Pine) struggling with his place in the universe, the Enterprise getting thoroughly destroyed Star Trek III-style, and the crappy life on the planet they crash on. But we do get to hear Kirk’s last log entry as the captain of the USS Enterprise, laid over the dramatic crashing of the saucer section into the ground as he narrowly escapes, and Sulu (John Cho) flying what looks to be a Defiant-esque ship out of an exploding cloud of enemy fighters.
It’ll be curious to see how this movie is received when it arrives July 22. Paramount appears to be aiming for an audience outside of the usual Star Trek fanbase, if the single is any indication, and the franchise has struggled to balance keeping Star Trek‘s identity as thinking person’s SF while throwing enough explosions and stunts at the audience to make them feel like they’ve seen an action movie. That said, Star Trek Into Darkness, bar its last ten minutes, was a pretty decent Star Trek movie, and if nothing else, it can’t be worse than Star Trek V.