Set phasers on mockery!
If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then there was enough adulation to fill a Klingon battle cruiser dumped on the Knitting Factory Tuesday night during the “Shat Ball,” an homage to pop culture icon William Shatner and all things Star Trek.
Adorned in Starfleet gold and blue shirts (there were no red shirts to be seen because they’re, well, you know), revelers celebrated Shatner’s birthday at the Metropolitan Avenue club in style with tankards of Klingon Blood Wine (otherwise known as red wine) and Romulan Ale (Stella Artois with green food coloring) and a laugh-out-loud improv set by Star Trekkin, a comedy troupe who enjoys evoking the silly spirit of Captain James T. Kirk and his spacey entourage.
The rest of the night was spent enjoying a special — and a lot funnier — interpretation of “Star Trek V” — which Shatner wrote, directed and starred in (it also has the distinction of being one of the worst Star Trek movies ever made) — by the Raspberry Brothers.
But these were just previews for the big event: a Captain Kirk impersonation contest replete with…all..the…annoying breaks…and…flamboyant inFLECtions!
“[Captain Kirk] is the soul of melodrama,” according to Star Trekkin founder Ben Sterling. “He’s the hero version of Snidley Whiplash…He’s always exploding with his own emotion and if you can tap into that you can tap into the Shatnerian creature.”
Raspberry member Jerm Pollet said he chose “Star Trek V: The Final Frontier” to mock because it was “a big pile of Shat.”
“He Shat all over this movie,” Pollet said. “No one else had the balls to do it!”
Everyone agreed that Shatner would have been pleased with the birthday send-off, even though he doesn’t really turn 79 for another month.
Despite his age, the Shat-man isn’t slowing down. After four years on “Boston Legal,” the-near octogenarian just secured a starring role in a new comedy “S–t My Dad Says” based on the famous Twitter page. He can also be found in any Priceline commercial. If that isn’t enough, they’ve just re-released another really bad Shatner movie (no, not “Star Trek: The Motion Picture”). Look for “Kingdom of the Spiders” (1977) at a NetFlix queue near you.
But no matter what he does, he’ll always be remembered as Captain Kirk and for boldly going where no nice Jewish boy from Canada has gone before — reaching iconic status by just being himself.
“William Shatner makes fun of himself and that’s helped him survive,” Sterling explained. “After Star Trek he got mocked for his craziness. He took that and celebrated it and now he’s an undying icon. And, while I love him to death, he’s also a little nuts, so I think that serves him well.”
If that’s the case, he definitely would’ve enjoyed the party.