This is a sort of memoir by Bill Shatner,
about Bill Shatner, obviously. It’s also a sort of guide to life. He figures
that since he’s 80 he has some insights into life and can probably give some
advice. It talks about his life from when he grew up in Canada, his life on
Star Trek, and his life up until this point. It’s interspersed with these rules
of his life, like he says Yes to things as often as he can, and it leads to
just delightful things.
I should say, I’m not a Star Trek person. I
have watched the modern versions with Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto, but I didn’t
watch Star Trek when I was a kid, I’ve never seen the TV show, or the old
movies. My parents were Star Wars people, so I became a Star Wars person. Not
that they’re mutually exclusive, but that’s how it worked out.
So while I know Shatner was on Star Trek, I
mainly know him from Boston Legal and Shit My Dad Says, and just his
Shatner-ness. I know him from being Bill Shatner and being sort of odd. And I
find him fascinating, his computer-like delivery and his weirdness. So I
thought, this would be fun.
It was fun. It talks a lot about who he is,
and it’s very tongue in cheek. He clearly knows how he is perceived and he
takes the piss out of that. He knows that he’s thought to have a massive ego,
and he plays with that. He knows that he’s seen as this slightly odd dude, and
he owns it.
It is clear that he has owned that in his life
too, when people have come to him with kooky, out-of-left-field-ideas, like him
making an album, or him selling his kidney stones (yes, he did that) he just
went, yeah. Let’s do that. Not that simplified, clearly, but he doesn’t seem to
have said no to many things.
There is quite a bit of focus on his feuds
with his Star Trek colleagues. He has had quite a few feuds, most particularly
with George Takei, but also the others, who saw him as pompous and accused him
of stealing lines. I obviously don’t know if this was the case, as I firstly
didn’t watch Star Trek, and I also have no idea what happened in the
background. I assume that both Shatner and his co-stars did slightly shitty
things, and they are angry with each other, and now it’s been too long and yeah.
Although he says he bears Takei no ill will he does bring him up a lot, which
was a bit tiring after a while.
The narration was great. Shatner has this slightly stilted, staccato way of speaking and reading, and it was great to hear Shatner read his own book. So that was great.
I thought it was okay. It wasn’t amazing, it
wasn’t awful. It was funny and Shatner’s off-kilter delivery and his life is
fascinating. And he has some great stories from his life.