‘Star Trek’: William Shatner Responds to Claim Captain Kirk Was Bisexual

For decades, some sci fi fans have been theorizing Star Trek‘s Captain James T. Kirk is bisexual. William Shatner opened up about his feelings on the matter. In addition, he’s discussed how he’d react if Kirk were portrayed as bisexual in an upcoming Star Trek project.

William Shatner in a desert
William Shatner | CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images

William Shatner said ‘Star Trek’ wouldn’t exist if this happened

Firstly, a little background. Kirk and Mr. Spock have a very close friendship. Although Kirk is a womanizer, his friendship with Spock is more profound — and longer-lasting — than any of his liaisons with women. As such, fans have been theorizing for decades that Kirk is a bisexual with feelings for Spock. Although there are explicitly LGBT characters in the Star Trek franchise, Kirk has only been depicted having romantic and sexual relationships with women in the Star Trek canon.

Shatner has played Kirk more than anyone else, having portrayed the character in two television series and several movies. Understandably, he has some opinions on Kirk’s sexuality. He does not believe the character was originally bisexual. According to Pink News, he blamed this on the social mores of the 1960s.

The Star Trek main theme

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“If Kirk were bisexual Star Trek would have never have happened,” he wrote. “It would not have influenced Star Wars & it would be a blip in the history of the Roddenberry family. How is it you don’t understand the social constructs of the 60’s? Why did Stonewall happen in 69 if all was ok?” Shatner was referring to the Stonewall riots, which are often seen as the beginning of the modern gay rights movement. In addition, Shatner said “Kirk, a character, would never have been allowed to be bisexual on TV or the movies in the timeframe he was created.”

William Shatner calls some people ‘moronic’

Afterward, Shatner called some people “moronic.” “I am so tired of presentism & moronic people who continue to place today’s value systems on the past to judge,” he said. “They cannot comprehend that the fact they have the freedom to judge is because of what brave people did in the past. Education needs a wake up call.”

William Shatner as Captain Kirk on the USS Enterprise
William Shatner | CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images

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So is he alright with Kirk being portrayed as bisexual in the future? “If [Star Trek exec] Alex Kurtzman wants his Kirk to be bi; I’m fine with that. I wouldn’t cowtow down to mob mentality wanting me to embrace something that didn’t currently exist. It still doesn’t.”

Will Captain Kirk be depicted as bisexual in the future?

So will Kirk be bisexual at some point? According to Pink News, Star Trek insider Daniel Richtman said CBS is considering making Kirk bisexual in the upcoming series Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. The series will be a prequel to Star Trek: The Original Series. In conclusion, Shatner has no issue with Kirk being bisexual in that series — but he’s clearly upset by the idea that Kirk was bisexual in The Original Series.