If you’re interested in participating in the Geek Out Challenge, read this post here! Each day I will be posting a question for that day for the next 30 days. Follow along each day with your own post or feel free to wait until the entire challenge has been released and take it on when you like! Be sure to link back to the master post at the end or link back to each post for each day.
Day Six: What real life geek inspires you?
As cynicism and wariness comes with age, so the people around that inspire you to deliver grows smaller with each passing year. I have role models, my parents of course were fundamental in shaping my ethics, morality and drive for instance but to suggest a so called geek that inspires me? its an interesting question to answer but one I can probably answer fairly easily. And that is the Royal Shakespeare Company trained actor and consummate professional, Mr Patrick Stewart. I’ve discussed previously my love for Star Trek, it was one of the first series I can claim for my own, by which a program I watched of my own volition not foisted upon me. It captivated me, this Captain of a starship with an English accent, in time long before streaming and syndication and where recording was largely a premium, downloading a distant dream outside of a short window each week my escapism from the mediocrity of school was my lego and recreating these Star Trek adventures I had just witnessed.
It’s perhaps with a certain degree of serendipity or good fortune as The Next Generation aired in the UK I was in my formative years of growth and maturity, television played a part to some extent and here was a character and individual who I could idolise and be inspired by. I could probably write an entire essay or thesis on the merits of studying the ideology and leadership of this fictional character and leader. But it was the actor that brought him to life that was an inspiration and as this series came to an end, it left a feeling of loss and trepidation could this character, indeed actor continue to inspire. Thankfully I didn’t have to wait long as Star Trek The Next Generation continued onto the big screen and once more my childhood idol returned to overcome his traumatic past and then to teach a morality lesson on standing true to your morals and principles. With the Star Trek series concluding, I was then fortunate to witness the birth and rise of one Charles Xavier, the man behind the X-Men, given life by the great man himself.
As an actor, he has inspired me, and had I a modicum of the performance arts inside me, he would have been an individual I would try to emulate or capture the energy and drive of at the very least. But as a person, he has publically attempted to maintain a fairly centrist and balanced perspective and approach to his activism beyond acting. I may not necessarily agree with his political stance being a self proclaimed socialist and active member of the UK labour party, though having left in 2018 with the rise of Corbynism on the political left I can sympathise with many who felt left behind here. None the less he has been a vocal critic of hard line policy and champion of more liberal ideologies and beliefs, most recently the push in the UK for a second referendum on the Brexit issue. I may not necessarily agree with this stance, however as someone to idolise and respect for staying true to his more centrist convictions, I respect him for still being a vocal force in this debate.
Which of course brings this versatile actor back to his most prolific role to date, the return of Picard launching next year on Amazon Prime. I was content when the Star Trek film series ended with Nemesis, equally his supposed final turn as Professor X in Days of Future Past. And then for one last time he returned in Logan to give closure to this character which drew praise for his performance of the mutant leader in his final days. I had closure with this character, so I was delighted when he announced his return as Captain Picard to continue and I’d presume conclude this particular chapter of his life. Which is to say, even though I had always hoped this might be the case, and certainly seemed a possibility with his role in Logan there had never been any hint he would don his space suit once more. But it seems as long as there is creative direction and purpose he seems willing to give his fans and the general Star Trek fandom a fitting send off for this iconic character. Actor, activist and a dog lover. Almost the perfect real life geek to be inspired by, as a Leeds United fan I’ll look passed the fact he’s a Huddersfield fan, nobody is perfect.
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