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PoliTreks: A Star Trek Podcast

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PoliTreks! Barry DeFord and Shashank Avvaru talk politics, religion, and society around the replicator. Along with special guests, we choose to Boldly Go straight into the social, political, and sometimes spiritual underpinnings at the core of Star Trek. In this podcast, we aim to seek out new perspectives, and discover the ways Trek - past and present - can help us better understand the world as it is, and us as we are. We travel at warp speed through worlds, timelines, and dimensions with one mission: make sense of our reality!

PoliTreks! Barry DeFord and Shashank Avvaru talk politics, religion, and society around the replicator. Along with special guests, we choose to Boldly Go straight into the social, political, and sometimes spiritual underpinnings at the core of Star Trek. In this podcast, we aim to seek out new perspectives, and discover the ways Trek - past and present - can help us better understand the world as it is, and us as we are. We travel at warp speed through worlds, timelines, and dimensions with one mission: make sense of our reality!
More Information

Location:

United States

Description:

PoliTreks! Barry DeFord and Shashank Avvaru talk politics, religion, and society around the replicator. Along with special guests, we choose to Boldly Go straight into the social, political, and sometimes spiritual underpinnings at the core of Star Trek. In this podcast, we aim to seek out new perspectives, and discover the ways Trek - past and present - can help us better understand the world as it is, and us as we are. We travel at warp speed through worlds, timelines, and dimensions with one mission: make sense of our reality!

Twitter:

@politreks

Language:

English


Episodes

27 - The PoliTreks of Star Trek: Beyond

10/30/2019
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On this episode, Shashank and Barry dig into the essential characters that drive the plot. We spend a fair bit of time on the unique featured characters of Krall and Jayla. We also look at the conditions of the franchise when the movie was released, what it was responding to, and some of the pitfalls it succumbs to in its delivery. Call backs, self-reference, movie tropes, and cliche get a fair bit of time but as a deeper discussion of how Trek has always experimented with its storytelling...

Duration:01:10:27

Remembering Aron Eisenberg

9/29/2019
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In this episode, Shashank and Barry react to the news of the great Aron Eisenberg's passing. This was recorded day-of, so there are some raw moments, however we delve into the lasting memory Aron and Nog, the beloved character he played will live on in our hearts.

Duration:00:57:42

26 - The PoliTreks of DSC:S2

9/4/2019
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In this episode, Shashank and Barry discuss Star Trek Discovery: Season 2. We cover some of the main characters (Pike and Burnham especially), discussing their motivations and permutations, along with the stories told in this season and how they shape and connect to Trek as a whole. We take a constructive look at elements of the season that worked and may not have worked as well. This takes us through the concept of time travel, as often portrayed by Star Trek and how it matches up with...

Duration:01:16:09

25 - The PoliTreks of DSC S:1

7/31/2019
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On this episode, Shashank and Barry discuss the political, historical, and social aspects of Season One of Discovery. On the news, we discuss a corruption scandal involving a government-appointed anti-corruption firm. Obvious connections to Cardassian tactics of deceit. The next news item is a farewell to Peter Allan Fields who passed away while we were on hiatus. Our main topic is a tad top-heavy as we get into the character of T'Kuvma, highlighting points of his opening speech and...

Duration:01:38:41

Special Announcement

7/9/2019
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Join us as we announce our affiliation with the Trek Geeks Podcast Network with special guests Bill Smith & Dan Davidson!

Duration:00:16:00

24 - The PoliTreks Of: Star Trek (2009)

6/4/2019
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In this Episode, Shashank and Barry take a deep dive into the great Kelvin Universe/JJ-verse/soft-reboot/Fast And Furious In Space movie Star Trek, released in 2009 after almost half a decade of no official Trek TV or cinema. We look at our relationship to the movie, cultural perception then and now, character portrayals (both compelling and uncanny), and how for some of us, brought Trek back into our lives in a big way.

Duration:01:33:21

23 - The PoliTreks Of: Into Darkness

4/26/2019
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On this episode, Shashank and Barry look into the perhaps often maligned episode of the Kelvin Universe, Star Trek: Into Darkness. This movie is ambitious and revisits major characters from movies past. We discuss it all, it's social and political relevance and how ST:ID reflects its time period very succinctly.

Duration:01:14:03

22 - Civilizations, Part II

4/17/2019
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On this episode of PoliTreks, Shashank and Barry discuss three infamous civilizations in the Star Trek Universe: the Q Continuum, The Romulan Star Empire, and The Terran Empire. We look to their connections to societies, religions, and regimes in contemporary and historical contexts.

Duration:01:05:42

21 - Civilizations, Part I

3/8/2019
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On this episode, Shashank and Barry discuss the possible human inspirations of the alien races of Star Trek. Much has been covered on this, so our hosts try to think outside of the box, or at least in terms of western paradigms. The news segment has another hot-take, this time from Shashank as he talks about escalating tensions between India and Pakistan. Be sure you did your 'homework'...

Duration:00:58:53

20 - Villains

2/5/2019
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On this, our maiden voyage of PoliTreks - A (the new 'season'), we look at Villains of Star Trek. This discussion is merely the beginning as Trek has many great portrayals. We also try to bring to the fire villains who may not get as much attention. The news is spicy with, our thoughts on the now ended government shutdown, a hot-take from Barry on Venezuela that may spark some discussion, and a quick nod to the new season of DSC. Join us for all of the political, social, and moral...

Duration:00:59:31

19 - Section 25 - A DS9 Celebration Part 4: 25 DS9 Lessons

1/6/2019
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In the news segment of this episode, Barry and Shashank catch you up on current events from the Trek Lens. The main topic is another part of the Section 25 Series in which Shashank and guest host Jamie McGregor discuss twenty five lessons that they've learned from Deep Space Nine.

Duration:01:47:28

18 - Methods Devour Themselves

12/7/2018
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In this very ambitious episode, Shashank and Barry have teamed up with our good friend Brett O'Shea from Revolutionary Left Radio, a political science/philosophy/activist podcast, to talk about the book 'Methods Devour Themselves: A Conversation' co-authored by Benjanun Sriduangkaew and J. Moufawad-Paul. The book itself represents a conversation between Speculative Fiction/Fantasy (SFF), which includes Sci-fi, and political philosophy. The works book to imagine new realities and ideas that...

Duration:01:56:57

18.1 - Methods Devour Themselves Raw Interviews

12/7/2018
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Being that the episode was coming on 2+ hours in length, and the fact that we could not get both interviews on the show in their entirety, we decided to release both episodes back-to-back in a separate release. This way, you dear listener, can have a chance to engage more with the authors' points themselves. A big thank-you goes out to Benjanun Sriduangkaew and J. Moufawad-Paul for their participation and patience while we got this collaboration underway. That, and much love to Brett and...

Duration:01:19:54

17 - Section 25 - DS9 25th Anniversary Celebration (Part 3)

10/29/2018
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In this, our return from hiatus, we bring you the 25 things we love about DS9. In hour discussion, we range from small detail to major story-centric themes, and add in socio-political elements that stand out. Because it's hard to shut up about DS9, this is one of our longest episodes yet! Enjoy!

Duration:01:50:11

16 - Jay Kuo Interview

9/9/2018
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In this episode, we talk with Mr. Jay Kuo, a member of Team Takei. He is a man of great creativity and talent and we get a chance to get his insights on communication online as it relates to Star Trek and the real world. That, along with the news and some great listener feedback, this is an episode you won't want to miss!

Duration:01:18:46

Supplemental #2: STLV 2018

8/11/2018
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In this, our second supplemental episode, Shashank and Barry are joined by Jamie McGregor to talk about STLV 2018. This is not merely a recap - here we talk the politics of the Con itself, the actors, the shows, and the people going. We dive into contradictions we see about having the convention itself, and the current political climate as it pertains to the message of Star Trek in the Twenty-First Century. *Banner photo Credit to Benjamin Hager of the Las Vegas Review Journal

Duration:00:40:14

15 - Section 25 - DS9 Dubious Characters

7/14/2018
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In this episode, Shashank and Barry continue their DS9 25th Anniversary celebration by deep diving the PoliTreks of some of the most dubious characters of the series. In no particular order, these characters offer a tonal shift in the Star Trek story as it developed through DS9's seven seasons. Along with news, that, at time of recording was not fully resolved (we are happy to hear all of the trapped Thai students and their coach were rescued safely, and we are sad to hear of the loss of one...

Duration:01:31:27

14 - On Toxic Fandom in Politics and Star Trek

6/18/2018
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In this episode, Barry and Shashank discuss, at length, toxic fandoms in the Star Trek Community, and in other communities. Shashank takes into account a core logic of toxic behavior that exists within the current political world, and connects similarities to how many behaviors are mirrored by those who are abusive, hold a narrow view of what a fandom is, and can classically be seen as trolls. Barry, on the other hand uses a perspective of Leftist philosophy to reveal how as political...

Duration:01:04:18

13 - Teaching Trek

6/1/2018
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In News, Shashank and Barry do their best to stay measured while discussing the case of the 1500 children lost by ICE. Shashank shares a couple of odd poll numbers about some world leaders and Barry reacts. Shashank gives us an update on how his newly adopted puppy, General Zod, is doing. For our main topic, special guest Amy Nelson who, among many other things, is a teacher joins Shashank and Barry who are also in the education field and talks about her love of teaching. The trio also...

Duration:01:39:21

12 - DebateTrek - Is Edward Jellico Good?

5/12/2018
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For our main topic, we have one question: IS EDWARD JELLICO GOOD? In the debut episode of DebateTreks, co-host Barry DeFord takes on TrekRanks host Jim Moorhouse in an epic war of words over the topic of Edward Jellico. In News, co-host Shashank Avvaru shares his thoughts about the White House Correspondents Dinner controversy, the Iran deal and explains his absence in the news segment of the previous show.For our main topic, we have one question: IS EDWARD JELLICO GOOD? In the debut...

Duration:01:27:11