How a Digital Spock Would Change 'Star Trek' Canon

In 2009, when young Commander Spock boarded the tiny ship known as the Jellyfish, the computer recognized him as “Ambassador” Spock because the audience was supposed to believe that Zachary Quinto is the younger Leonard Nimoy. But if a digital Leonard Nimoy were created as a young Spock in Star Trek: Discovery, it could add new complications to some already complex canon.

On March 3, TrekMovie asked Adam Nimoy, film director and son of late Spock-actor Leonard Nimoy, if he would be open to a Rogue One-style digital resurrection of his father in Star Trek: Discovery. “I think it’s an interesting idea…” Nimoy said, “I loved what they did in Rogue One… I think it should certainly be explored, but I’m not the final arbiter as to whether it’s going to happen, but I think it’s a great idea, personally.” As TrekMovie points out, having a young Leonard Nimoy as Spock in a cameo in Discovery wouldn’t be crazy since the new show takes place ten years before the original series, and Spock was definitely serving on the Enterprise under Captain Pike during that time.

To be fair, Adam Nimoy made it clear that he has nothing to do with a digital Leonard Nimoy appearing in either Discovery or a future film. Still, should this even be a thing Trekkies want? Because “old Spock” passed away in Star Trek Beyond, a digital Nimoy seems unnecessary in those films, meaning, the only place for a computer-generated young Spock would be on Discovery. But if young Leonard Nimoy was brought back to life for a digital cameo as Spock on Discovery, it would ignore the fact that there already is a canonical young Spock: Zachary Quinto.

Even though the newer Trek films take place in an alternate timeline, the 2009 film establishes that these are the same characters. Yes, they look different to us, but they don’t look different to Spock from “prime” universe. In the 2009 Star Trek, Leonard Nimoy’s Spock recognizes Chris Pine’s Kirk, Simon Pegg’s Scotty, and Zachary Quinto as the young Spock.

Zachary Quinto as Spock in 2009.

These characters exist in an alternate timeline, but for the most part, they are the same people. So if Spock appears in Discovery, it would be awesome. But would a digital Nimoy be necessary to do it? Trekkies will probably debate this point endlessly, but seeing as Spock’s father Sarek has already been recast (fans weren’t asking for digital Mark Lenard when that happened) it seems reasonable that Discovery will be devoid of characters who are played primarily by special effects in a computer. At least for now.

Here’s everything we know about Star Trek: Discovery.

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