By Amy Ryan
Updated October 12, 2007 at 12:00 PM EDT

Hey, Star Trek fans, did you know that Sulu was, in his youth, a burger-munching stoner, or that Scotty learned his grace-under-pressure from facing down a zombie onslaught? Okay, I know we shouldn’t typecast actors based on their best known roles, but how are you going to watch John Cho as the young Sulu and Simon Pegg as the young Scotty, without being reminded of Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle and Shaun of the Dead? I’m glad J.J. Abrams is casting his forthcoming Star Trek: Muppet Babies with colorful performers who have some cult appeal (so far, Heroes‘ Zachary Quinto, as Li’l Spock, is the biggest name among the space cadets), but the announcement about Cho and Pegg — both talented performers, but hardly proven as dramatic actors — implies that Abrams is going for actors who’ve demonstrated quirkiness, rather than actors whose faces and past roles suggest they’ll be able to convince us that their characters will someday grow into the seasoned space explorers we’ve known and loved for 40 years. (Look at James Doohan’s Scotty and George Takei’s Sulu, flanking William Shatner’s Kirk in this photo, and then look at the pic of Cho and Pegg here, and tell me this casting isn’t a stretch.) Anyone else share my skepticism, or are you confident that Mr. Lost and Alias knows what he’s doing?

addCredit(“Star Trek III: Star Trek: Everett Collection”)