The original Star Trek series was cancelled in 1969, after just three seasons on NBC. But that was hardly the end of the voyages of the starship Enterprise. The fans kept the show and characters alive via their own stories and conventions. The show really caught on in reruns and eventually spawned tons of official merchandise, an animated series (recently released on DVD), three “spin-off” series and a string of popular movies (starring the original cast and then the cast of the spin-off Star Trek: The Next Generation series).
The original cast and U.S.S. Enterprise crewmembers have been with us so long and are so beloved that they’ve become part of our culture. Though many have never watched an episode of Star Trek, most people recognize the characters and the actors. Advertisers, wanting to “live long and prosper,” understand this and have taken advantage of this recognizably to great success.
|William Shatner announces the Commodore Vic-20, “The Wonder Computer of the 80s,” in this 1982 commercial.||Captain Kirk (Shatner) and Scotty (the late James Doohan) appeared in a United Kingdom PowerGen commercial in the early 1990s.
|William Shatner parodied himself and his Star Trek career in this 1998 film with Eric McCormack.
||Bill, the longtime Priceline.com spokesperson, gets a bit of a surprise.
|Bill Shatner is being replaced as the Priceline.com spokesperson. Who could possibly replace…?||Bill tries to convince Leonard Nimoy that Priceline.com needs two spokemen to promote the site’s new service.|
|This 2006 Aleve commercial plays off Leonard Nimoy’s Mr. Spock role during an appearance at a Star Trek convention.
||Here’s what could be Bill Shatner’s last Kirk appearance onscreen — in a commercial no less.