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'Star Trek Into Darkness' Trailer Deep Dive: There Be Klingons Here! — ANALYSIS

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Dec 17, 2012 | 12:09pm EST

Star Trek Into Darkness

That J.J. Abrams is quite the tease. Over the weekend he allowed for the first nine minutes of May 17's Star Trek Into Darkness to screen before select IMAX showings of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, and today he revealed a new two-minute trailer. Funny thing is, we still don't know that much about the film. The IMAX preview showed Benedict Cumberbatch's villain John Harrison promising to cure a worried couple's ailing daughter and Spock (Zachary Quinto) going on a volcano-set rescue mission...but little else. The trailer that dropped today focuses on character—particularly on James T. Kirk (Chris Pine, looking more like William Shatner than ever) and his unwavering belief in his crew and, above all, himself. Note how lovingly the camera tracks in to the empty captain's chair while Bruce Greenwood's voiceover as Capt. Christopher Pike chastises Kirk for his arrogance. Pike is going dark: he predicts that Kirk will get himself, and everyone under his command, killed. Probably not what Kirk, who famously has never believed in a "no-win scenario," wants to hear. The rest of the trailer teases out a tad more of the somber mood we got in the 60-second announcement video: more coffins draped in the Federation flag, more color-drained 23rd century cityscapes. But nothing really new. That is, except for these six moments that caught our eye.

Star Trek Into Darkness

So, no, that whole funereal vibe thing I've mentioned before is in no way metaphorical. That swooping pass made by those triangular Federation attack craft? A ceremonial flyover. And for the first time we learned how to properly fold the Federation flag!

Star Trek Into Darkness

I had previously assumed that the funeral in question would be for just one man—perhaps John Harrison himself, if he were to have been presumed dead. But these long rows of photon torpedo tubes turned coffins shows that it's a large-scale tragedy the Federation is mourning. A tragedy that probably took place on earth. Not to be grisly, but it's traditionally difficult to recover bodies lost in space.

Star Trek Into Darkness

Someone's getting in an EV suit for a space walk! Er...glide. My first thought was that this looked like just a repeat of the 2009 Star Trek film's HALO jump, but maybe someone's actually not taking an atmospheric plunge. Maybe they're recreating Spock's extra-vehicular, 2001: A Space Odyssey-trippy space jaunt from Star Trek: The Motion Picture. (Let the theory begin that John Harrison is an envoy for V'Ger!)

Star Trek Into Darkness

Klingons! Unless we're horribly mistaken, this looks like a mid-23rd century B'rel-class Klingon Bird of Prey. Though none of our favorite forehead-ridged warriors made an appearance in the 2009 film (unless you count that simulated D7 battlecruiser we glimpsed briefly during Kirk's Kobayashi Maru test), Klingons seem like they're bound to grunt their way through the sequel. And this particular Bird of Prey appears to be chasing a shuttlecraft. From the official synopsis we learned that "Captain Kirk leads a manhunt to a war-zone world to capture a one man weapon of mass destruction." Could this be that war-zone world and could one of the factions in said war be Klingons? It looks entirely likely. Just don't expect them to have too large of a role. Otherwise, Qapla!

Star Trek Into Darkness

Some particularly bereft Starfleet officer seems to be drowning his sorrow in Romulan Ale, even though we assume it's still illegal even in the Nero-affected alternate timeline of Abrams' films. We're guessing that ring he's dropping into the glass belonged to whoever he's mourning.

Star Trek Into Darkness

This is like a microsecond fast shot, but it shows Kirk firing a phaser rifle through a window at a shuttlecraft. Earlier in the trailer we saw what appeared to be a shuttlecraft of this same design cutting through the hull of the Enterprise, perhaps to convey a boarding party. Kirk's not having any of it, though, and is prepared to defeat the invaders hand-to-hand if need be. Note that the uniform he's wearing is quite like the dress regalia William Shatner's Admiral Kirk wears in Star Trek: The Motion Picture.

If Abrams wanted to get us really excited yet have our excitement be based on next to nothing, we have two words for him: mission accomplished. What did you think of the new trailer?

Follow Christian Blauvelt on Twitter @Ctblauvelt

[Photo Credit: Paramount Pictures (7)]

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