If you’ve watched even a handful of Star Trek episodes, Redshirts grabs you based on its title alone. As a tribute to the nameless and expendable crew members of the venerable away team, Redshirts takes us to the 25th century where the Universal Union flagship Intrepid has a problem keeping their crew members alive.
Scalzi blends science fiction and parody, as the newest members of the Intrepid learn the hard way that they should not volunteer for away missions. For fans of Star Trek, shades of Galaxy Quest are ever present as gaping plot holes and shoddy science is just shirked away without explanation.
I had been anticipating this release, as I was a big fan of Scalzi’s Old Man’s War. While not as a straight forward science fiction outing that I expected, it was a very enjoyable read. It explores the absurdity in the manner in which these nameless crew members die, and how a group of them decide to find a way to determine their own fate.