Today, November 18, 2021, is the 27th anniversary of the release of Star Trek Generations and with it comes the stark reminder that we are still without a Hallmark Enterprise NCC-1701-B ornament. How can any collection be complete with this infamous Excelsior-class starship missing. This was the site of legendary James T. Kirk’s “death”!
An upgrade of the Excelsior-class, she was the third Federation starship to bear the name Enterprise.
During her maiden voyage under Captain Harriman, the starship received a distress call from two El-Aurian transport vessels caught in a strange, mysterious energy ribbon. Kirk, on board as an honored guest, assisted in the rescue while the Enterprise-B got caught in the Nexus.
Kirk was integral in saving the ship, but as the Enterprise pulls away, the ribbon suddenly strikes the starship, tearing a large gash through the hull.
In its wake, it left only a gaping hole in the bulkhead where Captain Kirk once was.startrek.com
Hallmark has produced no less than 24 Enterprise ornaments over the course of 30 years and still we wait for the NCC-1701-B.
Star Trek Generations was released in 1994 and Hallmark has missed opportunities at the 10th, 15th, 20th and 25th anniversaries. Generations’ 30th anniversary is only three years away and it would be a perfect opportunity to “right the ship”. Hallmark, you’re on the clock!
Okay, let’s all sit down and have an honest chat about the B. I assure you that we’ve had her on our sensors for a long time. (As also the U.S.S. Excelsior—and yes, we are very in tune with the design differences between the starships.) The short answer is, sure, we could do the B . . . but you wouldn’t be so happy about it.
I’m hoping I can get an assist here with some top and side profiles (hint hint). I know a lot of us could do a pretty good job sketching the B from memory but take a good look at the design here. To do the B the way we would want to—with light in all the right places—that’s not an easy trick. We have to pack those skinny nacelles (these are hardly ample, Scotty) with wires and lights and plot the placement of circuit boards and battery housings and all the things either in the primary hull, which is pretty shallow as well, or the pot-belly of a secondary hull that isn’t quite as accommodating as you think.
One solution is just to make the whole ornament big enough to do everything you’d expect it to do . . . leaving you with a B that is unpleasantly out of scale with the rest of your collection and possibly a price point that would be a bump up, too.
Part of the wait we’re all experiencing is on technology. Advancements in consumer electronics, many of which come with price reductions, happen all the time. It was the introduction of a tiny wireless RF chip at the right price that unlocked our ability to do our Storytellers ornaments. I’m hoping you’ve enjoyed what’s come of that so far. 😉
In my own personal experience (and it’s matched by that of plenty of others) the B is the second-most requested Star Trek Keepsake Ornament I’ve heard. The only request I’ve heard more over the years is for a U.S.S. Enterprise tree topper and you know how that story ends. We get it; we want the B, too. I can tell you that it’s not an “if,” it’s a “when.” We just don’t know when.
I’d be remiss if I signed off without thanking each of you for your support of what we’re doing with the Star Trek license. I’m over the moon from your responses to Star Trek Storytellers—it’s among my associations with Star Trek of which I’m most proud. I’m so eager for next year’s additions to complete the story. You’re all terrific and I appreciate you greatly.
PS—if you’re gonna make a pitch of reasons to do the B, I might reconsider the mention of it being the place where Captain Kirk died. We’ve done a Star Trek death scene before and I still remember the social media response to THAT one. haha 😉-Kevin Dilmore, 11/18/21 aka Enterprise B Day
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