In a New Star Trek Series, Michelle Yeoh Deliberately Used Her M’sian Accent

Unless you’re a Star Trek fan, you won’t have known that there’s a new Star Trek series coming.

Star Trek: Discovery is the sixth (or seventh, if you count Star Trek: The Animated Series) Star Trek series. The last Star Trek series was Star Trek: Enterprise, which ended its run in 2005 after its poor performance in its rating.

So. With so few Star Trek fans in Singapore (at least, from what I know since I’m a Trekkie since young), what’s with this article?

Because Michelle Yeoh is playing a role in the series, and she used a Malaysian accent.

Like. A. Boss.

Okay, here’s some background story before we continue: firstly, Michelle Yeoh is a Malaysian Chinese actress—or to be more specific, she’s from Ipoh, Perak. Singaporeans and Malaysians share the same accent in their dialects: the only difference is the language dialects, which can be code-switched easily (like changing from Standard Singapore English to Singlish).

Whereas for accents, unless you act it out, you can’t change it.

But anyways. So Michelle Yeoh is an established actress, having made a name in Hollywood and of course, being awardded the Darjah Datuk Paduka Mahkota Perak in Malaysia, giving her the title Dato’.

Now, to Star Trek. If you’re only familiar with the Star Trek movies since 2009, you’ll have to throw that mentality away, because that rebooted version focuses more on actions. The traditional Star Trek is all about exploration, technology, social issues and most importantly, a look into our future.

Gene Roddenberry, the creator of Star Trek, wanted to create an utopian universe in our future. This means everyone, regardless of race, language or religion, works together seamlessly. Diversity is one thing that is clear in the series: in the original series, we’ve a Russian who spoke with a Russian accent (remember, during that time, the Cold War was still ongoing) and a Scottish who spoke with a Scottish accent.

Let’s just say that the diversity goes even further with each new series, because it’s part of Gene Roddenberry’s vision (e.g. having a first female captain in Star Trek: Voyager).

In other words, if you want to learn about equality, Star Trek is a good place to start.

Star Trek: Discovery is scheduled to be out in September 2017. Here’s the trailer that was released about a week ago.

Before you go apeshit, here’s just one disclaimer: while Michelle Yeoh is the captain of a starship, she isn’t the main lead. Because in this series, the main lead isn’t the captain but an officer in a starship (Star Trek’s way of showing us, again, about equality).

Have you noticed something? No?

Michelle Yeoh used her Malaysian accent.

In fact, there were articles written on why she has chosen to use that, and she responded LIKE A BOSS.

Image: Facebook (Michelle Yeoh 楊紫瓊)

It’ll be cool if she’ll just say, “Siao liao. Contact Starfleet Command quickly now. Klingons come liao. 几够力一下啦.”

And just in case you’re feeling, you know, “shocked”, here’s one more shocker: the ship she commanded is USS Shenzhou. It’s not often that a Starfleet starship is named after your friend’s name.

Now, what has this got to do with anything here in Singapore?

Ah Boys to Men 4, perhaps? #justwondering

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Featured Image: Facebook (Michelle Yeoh 楊紫瓊)

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