Reviving a dormant property can be tricky business.  Though I can clearly see the appeal of the revamped ‘Battlestar Galactica’, I have long held a quiet little grudge against it for not being “my” Battlestar.  Some mock me for it, but I have always had a soft spot for the zeitgeist of original show, taking its clear Star Wars envy and pairing it with a then-timely concept (ancient astronauts from beyond space colonizing Earth) and a neat design aesthetic to create something unique.  Certainly some of the effects are laughable now, if you’re that kind of cynical schmuck, but the basic premise and concepts clearly had more mileage in them than anyone expected.  Most impressive to me are the ship designs, from the bulky Battlestars, to the Cylons reticulated saucer-ships, to the pinnacle of Galactica design: The Colonial Vipers.  Sleek and advanced, they paid homage to their influences (Luke Skywalker’s X-wing, but also the rocket ships of Flash Gordon and his ilk) while retaining their own specific identity and design, which in turn begs a query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) didn’t care much for ‘The Phantom Menace’, but the silvery Corvette-looking Naboo flagship was gorgeous to behold, asking: In all the futures of all the universes, who has the coolest looking spacecraft of all?

The Author

Matthew Peterson

Matthew Peterson

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture!

And a nice red uniform.

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  1. December 4, 2013 at 11:35 am — Reply

    Guess I can’t say anything Star Wars since that is the past, not the future.

    But I’ve always had a spot in my heart for the Klingon Bird of Prey’s various incarnations in Star Trek. That is just one awesome looking spacecraft.

  2. December 4, 2013 at 11:40 am — Reply

    I was a big fan of the mech style spaceships in Outlaw Star, but I think my favourite would be the bounty hunter ships in Cowboy Bebop.

  3. kaptaran
    December 4, 2013 at 12:45 pm — Reply

    Star Trek’s spaceship designs really resonate with me, but what really sticks with me to this day is Galvatron’s ship from Transformers: The Movie.

    Its pretty derivative a Star Trek vessels in itself, but I really loved the squared front and the curved wings.

  4. Arbor Day
    December 4, 2013 at 1:46 pm — Reply

    On a purely, “cool” not reasonable or possible scale, I’d have to go with an obscure Magog World Ship from Andromeda. It was like an entire solar system turned into a space ship.

  5. December 4, 2013 at 2:41 pm — Reply

    Alisha makes a good point, so I guess I can’t go with the Falcon, so…

    ARGH! then i wanted to go with the Heart of Gold, but that’s not from the future either, so…

    i’ve always had a soft spot for the VF-1 Valkyrie, from Macross/Robotech

  6. December 4, 2013 at 2:44 pm — Reply

    For me it has to be the ships from “Space Above and Beyond”. The Hammerhead fighter was one of the best ships of all time!

  7. Frank
    December 4, 2013 at 8:10 pm — Reply

    One that has not been mentioned is the Starfury from Babylon 5. It’s a cool looking ship that looks like it is a next-generation X-wing.

    Also, Klingon Bird of Prey, Romulan Warbird (TNG) and Klingon Battlecruiser.

  8. Goofball814
    December 4, 2013 at 9:03 pm — Reply

    The fighters from Space: Above and Beyond we’re pretty bad-assed!

  9. Kirby
    December 4, 2013 at 9:49 pm — Reply

    I’m going to echo Matthew Sherman with the Valkyries. I also really enjoy the 50s retro look of the Planet Express Ship.

  10. DF
    December 4, 2013 at 10:25 pm — Reply

    Babylon 5 Earth Alliance ships. From the massive Destroyers with their Gravity simulating rotating crew sections to the Starfuries with realistic physics action. (The first time I saw one rotate 120 degrees to engage another ship while continuing their forward motion, I knew what I wanted the future to look like)

  11. Wolfe
    December 5, 2013 at 1:35 am — Reply

    The most well-suited ship for what I’d want a spaceship for, I’d go with the USS Defiant from DS9.

  12. December 5, 2013 at 2:40 am — Reply

    Purely by coolest, I gotta go with Imperial Star Destroyer. Almost makes me want to join Imperial Navy, even they are the bad guys. I would stand on the bridge, looking outside and hum imperial march by myself when captain isnt looking.

    • December 5, 2013 at 7:25 am — Reply

      Technically that is the past, not the future.

      You could always be like Booster Terrik and salvage a Star Destroyer AFTER the war, turning it into your private luxury ship (he turned his into a traveling casino eventually) and have it repainted any color you wanted. I’ve always imagined if I had one, I’d have it repainted to resemble a cheese wedge to confuse people. Nobody is going to expect a cheese wedge to start blasting them.

  13. Bob
    December 5, 2013 at 7:17 am — Reply

    In print I’d have to go with the Legion.Always evolving.
    And on tv/film I’d go with Star Trek.Even Enterprise,which debuted the NX-01 wa really something considering it supposed to be made before the first NCC-1701.

  14. Oldcomicfan
    December 5, 2013 at 8:14 am — Reply

    I’d nominate the spaceships from 2001. From the PanAm cruiser to the space stations and the Discovery, they all displayed a purpose-built aesthetic that contained elements of Von Braun’s retro-futuristic rockets and space stations, rendered in a style that was more realistic than most sci-fi movies. They all looked like they could be built with modern technology, and actually function.

    I liked the original Battlestar Galactica, but I also had a problem. Aside from the Daggits and Boxie, for which Glen Larsen ought to be sent to the same part of purgatory where George Lucas will probably be confined for inflicting Jar-Jar Binks upon the universe, the vipers and other ships were so obviously a cheap rip-off of Star Wars vessels.

    As an aside, if you remember the ship the Space Nazis flew in that one episode of BSG – that ship was design by Matt Jefferies, who had designed the original Enterprise. He had done it freelance and had hoped that the shows producers would purchase the thing for use as a prop in the Star Trek show, but by that point, the show was already scheduled for termination. The long-necked model appeared in several sci-fi movies and tv shows in the decades since, but the Space Nazi version is the only one I recall seeing.

  15. Ray
    December 5, 2013 at 9:39 am — Reply

    No Love for the Firefly Class transpot ship? Well sure, it’s a little beat up, and sometimes the odd piece falls off during re-entery (Who amonst us can’t say the same?) but it’s a good looking ship, with a sturdy construction and a glowy back end.. I love a glowy back end…

    • December 5, 2013 at 11:43 am — Reply

      I do love the ships in the Firefly/Serenity setting, and part of that is because of the “junky” look many have. So many spaceships in other media look so antiseptic and proper, and that just doesn’t seem too realistic to me (yes, I know, the spaceships aren’t very realistic anyway, but there is only so far I can suspend disbelief before it seems silly to me). I can understand fleet ships being kept in top shape, but private vessels I would think would be patched up and looking less than pristine.

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