It’s RED SHIRTS…will they survive? (feature)

When it comes to everyone’s favorite walking Starfleet targets, there’s been a lot of fan film attention paid to the humble and ill-fated “Red Shirt.” Of course, Starfleet security only wore red for a few short years during the TOS-era, but that was long enough for Trekkers and even some non-Trekkers to accept that, when it came time to beam down—unless you were Scotty or Uhura or Rand—you did NOT want to be wearing the color red!

With titles like RED SHIRT, RED SHIRTS: A STAR TREK PARODY SERIES, and THE RED SHIRT DIARIES (to name but a few), fan filmmakers have been hilariously spotlighting these poor bastards—I mean, noble heroes—for nearly a decade.

One of the very first parody fan films of this sub-genre of a sub-genre of a sub-genre was posted to YouTube back in 2013—the brainchild of two show-runners who, at the time, were both studying Multimedia at California State University Northridge. ANTOINE BANDELE and his friend RICARDO ELLIOTT II decided in early 2013 to start up a YouTube channel called “Akimbros”—a hybrid of the word “akimbo” (when you stand with your hands on your hips) and “bros.”

Antoine Bandele and Ricardo Elliott II…the Akimbros!

At the time (and even now) African-American showrunners on Star Trek fan films were a rarity. So despite its light-hearted nature and the fact that this was the only Star Trek fan film that the Akimbros would ever release, RED SHIRTS still holds an important place in fan film history.

Antoine and Ricardo initially set out to release one new film every two weeks on their Akimbros channel, and Red Shirts was their first offering. It debuted on May 17, 2013. Their second release, an epic light saber battle on the roof of a garage next to the 405 Freeway in West Los Angeles, followed just over two weeks later. However, their third film, an action short titled Tower 46, took another six weeks to post, and their fourth release, an ultra-short but ultra-clever “real life” video game between Pirates and Ninjas, wouldn’t see release for another six months. Their final offering, a brief teaser-trailer for an Oblivion fan film, came out a year later…and then that was that for the Akimbros.

But right now, let’s take a look at their hilarious first project, Red Shirts

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