It was a boring day in April of 2020. Covid-19 was making its way through the country and lockdowns were in full effect. In this mind numbing boredom, Jonathan Gower & Omar Parker, two independent film producers, decided to make a change.
Jonathan Gower is a lifelong trekkie. Growing up in the small town of Belgrade, Montana, he has been a loyal viewer and fan since he was a small child. Gower’s room is decorated with merchandise and memorabilia from the franchise. But Gower is much more than a dedicated fan. He has produced numerous films including a short film called Salta, which was an official selection of Tribeca Film Festival. It was Gower’s idea to turn to a more commercial platform of YouTube.
Omar Parker is a producing prodigy, having produced short films that premiered at Berlin, Cannes, Sundance, Tribeca, and Tiff. He was one of the youngest producers to be in competition for a Palme in any category at Cannes. Parker was nineteen at the time. Even more amazing, he was one of the first individuals to ever be a producer on two separate Sundance shorts both in competition at the same time. Parker has also made numerous feature films. The Burying Party (2018) is currently available for streaming on Amazon Prime. Luz (2019) is currently available for streaming on Shudder. Both films were also festival darlings.
Parker was very ready to turn to a more commercial form of media, and it was ideal for social distancing. Together the two started their first channel, Captain’s Log, and the brand of the same name. The duo began making videos based around the lore and fandom of Star Trek. They explained the nuances of the story, explored fan theories, and hosted podcast-like segments answering fan questions. The channel also featured funnier segments like their video game “drunkthroughs” and comedy segments.
Over the next eight months the brand would expand into over four channels, which was host to over two hundred thousand subscribers and millions of views. The comment section was lively, and the fandom converged on the group of channels. The only downside was the copyright strikes. Due to using film, television, and video game footage from the franchise a great deal of their videos were striked and eventually a difficult decision had to be made. The channel had to be moved.
Today none of the channels remain, but the community has migrated. The new home of the fandom is captainslogvideos.com, where the brands old and new videos are located, along with a merchandise store and a bustling forum of community interaction. The duo explained the move in their last video as necessary to continue the brand through quarantine and that it would allow for more content to be possible. Through the struggles of a pandemic and copyright law, at least this channel has had a happy ending.