Trekkies might scoff at the obviousness of the Easter eggs scattered throughout “Star Trek Into Darkness.” Oh, please — it’s not like they’re as tricky as cracking the Kobayashi Maru test! But for mainstreamers, a little help might come in handy. Here’s our cheat sheet:
Pay attention to the new Enterprise crew member played by Alice Eve (“She’s Out of My League”). Her character’s name is borrowed from the “Star Trek II” scientist who pioneers the Spock-resurrecting Genesis Effect — and who also happens to be Classic Kirk’s ex-lover and baby mama. In the new movie, she’s got a funny intro in which she comes between Kirk and Spock, literally. Maybe the miffed Vulcan senses where all this is headed.
Tribbles, those fast-multiplying furballs from the original series, actually do their bit to help save the day in “Into Darkness.” And here we thought they were nothing but trouble.
“Star Trek: The Motion Picture” established a link between Gene Roddenberry’s universe and NASA’s with its surprise shout-out to the Voyager space probe program. “Into Darkness” subtly adds to the connection during a meeting between Kirk and a Starfleet admiral (Peter Weller), as background bric-a-brac traces aeronautics history from the Wright brothers’ flying machine to the Space Shuttle to Federation starships.
The opening of “Into Darkness” is set on a primitive, crimson-forested planet called Nibiru. That’s also the name given by pseudoscience adherents to a hypothetical planet beyond Neptune — you know, the one that extraterrestrial visitors hailed from in ancient Sumerian times. “Into Darkness” co-writer Roberto
Orci has reportedly cited writings on Nibiru as an inspiration for his work on “Cowboys & Aliens.”
Maybe it’s coincidence that a sequence of San Francisco aerial mayhem shows Alcatraz getting smashed. Or maybe it’s J.J. Abrams venting a little over his underappreciated “Lost” follow-up “Alcatraz,” canceled by Fox after just one season, unresolved cliffhanger be darned.