DVD review: ‘How William Shatner Changed the World’ |

DVD review: ‘How William Shatner Changed the World’

Steve Segal

When the original “Star Trek” television show was first broadcast in the 1960s, part of its allure wasn’t just the overacting of William Shatner (Captain Kirk), it was the way the show presented technology in new and fascinating ways.

Almost four decades later, the documentary “How William Shatner Changed the World” lovingly pokes fun at the “Trek” series, but also interviews many of the real-life scientists whose lives were inspired by the crew of the fictional USS Enterprise.

While some of the shows premises are still futuristic — warp speed, alien races, machine-like Borg and even time travel — other once seemingly impossible technology has become part of today’s society, created by people who were inspired by the show.

For example, iPods, cell phones and even computer compression were created by passionate “Trek” fans who dedicated their professional lives to making the futuristic technology a reality. Shatner playfully pokes fun at himself, the show and cast along the way. It’s a G-rated version of the foul-mouthed, recently released “Comedy Central Roast of William Shatner.”

“How William Shatner Changed the World” was nominated for two Emmys in 2006 for Outstanding Nonfiction Special and Outstanding Writing for Nonfiction Programming. It is based on Shatner’s book, “I’m Working on That: A Trek From Science Fiction to Science Fact.” DVD, $19.98 It is also available for rental.

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