June 4th was the 30th anniversary of the release of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, which isn't just the best Star Trek movie but is arguably the best space action movie ever made. A crowning classic and, I think, a masterpiece that recontextualizes the fun of Star Trek: The Original Series into something bigger and more important, Wrath of Khan is one of my favorite movies ever.
Khan wasn't the only classic released in the summer of 1982, and the Alamo Drafthouse has been celebrating this momentous year with a series of screenings (presented by Fandango) that bring back to life these amazing films - in 35mm, as they were meant to be seen. The Badass Digest team descended upon Austin this weekend to get in on the action; Film Crit Hulk saw Poltergeist for the first time (can you believe Khan and Poltergeist opened the same weekend!), and you can read his thoughts here. I was in town to co-host the Khan screening.
In grand Alamo tradition we decided to have some hijinks. The pre-show was fairly unique: I took the stage and got my first ever tattoo to prove my love for Star Trek. While Katja Ramirez of Perfection Tattoo was working on me, local improv group The Institution Theater did a live recreation of Space Seed, the original series episode that first introduced Khan Noonien Singh.
It was a great night, and it was a gorgeous print. Seeing Khan on the big screen is wonderful, and I'm happy to have seen it on June 4th, 1982 as well as June 4th, 2012. And just like that first time I saw the movie - and just like EVERY SINGLE TIME I have seen it since then - I cried at the end. I know Meredith is writing something about her experience - this was her first time seeing Khan! - and watching the movie has inspired me, so don't be surprised if there's a new Best Movies Ever column coming up.
In the meantime, enjoy the video, and celebrate 30 years of greatness by watching Wrath of Khan!
And here's a look at the tattoo today. Healing nicely! Katja did great work, and she was very gentle to this big baby.