Just how dark does Star Trek Into Darkness get? And who is the dashing bastard unleashing total destruction on the Federation, and Kirk in particular? We've gone through the first teaser trailer frame by frame and studied every clue. Check out our roundup of every great Benedict Cumberbatch moment — including his battle with a very familiar alien. Possible spoilers ahead...
We start with a shot of what looks like future San Francisco — at least, that appears to be the TransAmerica building and the
Bay Golden Gate Bridge amongst all this future Rem Koolhaas-esque architecture. In a voiceover, Benedict Cumberbatch basically copies the villain from the Iron Man 3 trailer, saying that people believe their world is safe, but they are wrong, and they should enjoy their last few moments of illusory okayness. "For I have returned to have my vengeance!" So he's been there before, and he feels like he's got a score to settle. With Starfleet? With Kirk? Could be either or both.
It's a big formal event, possibly a memorial or commemoration. Kirk is addressing a bunch of officers, wearing his dress uniform. Blue Angels-type fighters fly overhead in formation. Update: Commenter CLBnntt thinks this is the "Missing Man" formation, making this possibly a Starfleet funeral.
Kirk pauses to have a serious moment with someone, possibly a wheelchair-bound Pike.
Then we cut to what appears to be an alien planet, where a weird red temple structure is built into a dense thicket of vegetation that's the same rich ochre. One path leads to the temple, and then forks into three paths.
Kirk and McCoy run through the red vegetation, wearing gray scarves wrapped around their torsos, and looking freaked out...
And then they Butch-and-Sundance their way off a cliff into some water.
We're back at the Starfleet formal event. This is Alice Eve, who also played the young Agent Q in Men in Black III. Who's she playing here? Back when she was first cast, the trades quoted insiders as saying she was a new character, who'd never appeared in Trek before. In that same announcement, they also said that the film's main villain, who was to be played by Benicio Del Toro at the time, was someone who would be very familiar to Trek fans. More on that in a minute.
Someone (probably Alice Eve) hands something to Kirk, who flirts. While McCoy watches, not all that amused.
Cut to a glowy yellow dome, where someone — probably Cumberbatch — descends on a rope, shooting a big cannon at a figure —
And then fighting that figure with some intense martial-arts moves. It's a Klingon! Wielding a whip! This is the first thing that qualifies as an Easter Egg in this trailer, I guess.
Kirk and Uhura watch in horror as something blows up. They're also wearing the gray scarves, which implies it's around the same time in the film. Is this a disguise the crew wears, or some kind of protective gear for tough conditions? Update: On further consideration, this is clearly a different outfit and a different set of gray scarves. This "black leather jackets and gray scarves" ensemble seems to be worn on the same planet where Cumberbatch is beating up a Klingon, not the "red vegetation" planet.
And then Cumberbatch descends, pointing a gun — it's implied he's pointing it at Kirk and Uhura, but that could just be some snappy editing. Oh, and one interesting thing about this teaser trailer is who's not in it — there's no glimpse of Peter Weller, who's playing an older adviser to Cumberbatch's villain. Why wouldn't they show Weller? Maybe because his appearance gives away which villain Cumberbatch is playing. Like, if he has distinctive makeup or costuming. Just a thought.
Spock abseils into a fiery place amidst tons of sparks. Wearing a suit similar to the ones used for skydiving in the first movie. (Thanks to Ironcladlou and Rfelt for identifying Spock here!)
Spock walks along a rocky path in the middle of a full-blown lava stream. Like the middle of an active volcano.
This appears to be the same yellow dome area where Cumberbatch was fighting the Klingon a little while ago. And note the gray scarf and shiny jacket once again.
Meanwhile, Spock appears to be sneaking up on someone, toting a gun. He's wearing a weird blue jacket, with lots of odd shapes on it.
The Enterprise rises slowly, painfully, out of the ocean. I'm guessing this might happen after it crashes into the ocean — which is shown later on in this trailer. Update: A bunch of you don't think this is the Enterprise, because of the shape of the nacelles. I still think it is, but we'll find out soon enough, I guess.
We're back in lava-land. Notice that Spock is standing on a rocky shelf, watching what appears to be an artificial globe rising out of the lava and begin to burst open. This is arguably another sort of Easter Egg — Spock is triggering an eruption on purpose. I didn't notice him standing in this frame the first few times.
And now, Spock watches as the lava shoots upwards violently.
In a possibly related development, everything is blowing up aboard the Enterprise, and the crew is all getting pulled down a corridor — explosive decompression? Gravity failure?
More crewmembers being sucked away. On the left, that appears to be Scotty holding on for dear life. On the right, that's definitely Kirk.
And then we're back watching Cumberbatch beat up a Klingon. This is the clearest screenshot I could manage.
Some kind of conference room, where computer screens are gathered on a circular table, blows up. Personnel in gray Starfleet uniforms are blown backwards by the explosion.
Kirk punches Cumberbatch right in the excellent cheekbones, while Spock watches, holding a big gun. Note that Kirk is wearing the same shiny jacket he was wearing with his gray scarf in the "Kirk and Uhura" shot earlier. And Spock has on the same weirdly patterned jacket he was wearing earlier, when he was sneaking up with his gun.
Sulu doesn't know which console to look at — they're all equally alarming.
Spock runs through a city in the closest he gets to a panic, pulling out his phaser.
Someone — probably Cumberbatch — plunges through a plate glass window.
Now Alice Eve is wearing a medical/scientific uniform. And freaking out really loudly.
Now instead of being sucked down corridors, people are being propelled by huge fiery explosions down corridors.
Uhura cries on Scotty's shoulder. Scotty looks disconsolate.
Kirk reaches down to try and help pull someone up...
...but he's too late. Something blows up and whoever he was reaching for is probably gone.
Cumberbatch pulls back his fist...
...and plunges it into something. Or someone.
Kirk looks like he's had the worst day of his life as he goes into confront Cumberbatch, who's wearing a Starfleet uniform and gloating. (As seen in the photo up top.) "So. Shall we begin?" he asks.
A group of people look on in horror as something terrible goes down. I'm not sure, but that might be Nazneen Contractor up front — she's supposedly playing the wife of Noel Clarke's character, but Clarke recently said he thought he'd been cut out of the final film. But I could be wrong — I haven't watched Contractor in anything before. Update: Commenter Hades_Kane thinks this is Cynthia Addai-Robinson, from Spartacus.
Destruction rains down on the city... probably still San Francisco. And we'd only just cleaned up from that Pacific Rim kaiju attack last week.
Something crashes into the waterfront... it's the Enterprise. With smoke coming out of one of the nacelles. Like I said, I'm guessing this happens before the bit where the Enterprise lifts out of the water. (Update: Or possibly just another Starfleet vessel.)
And now we're on to the Japanese bonus scene. Cumberbatch, sounding quite sad, says, "Is there anything you would not do for your family?" The emphasis on "your" makes it sound as though Cumberbatch is saying that he's doing all of this for his family — which could be the fellow augments, if he's Khan. Or could be his cult following, if he's Garth of Izar. Hard to say. In any case, Kirk looks horrified as the light turns an ominous red. Oh, and note that Kirk is wearing his dress uniform again, which I'm guessing is from the start of the film, when he's at that ceremonial event.
And the last shot shows Kirk — probably — reaching up to a plate glass window, on the other side of which, what appears to be Spock's hand comes up to meet his. This is an obvious homage to the "death of Spock" scene in Wrath of Khan — and it's probably a misdirection. It seems unlikely that they're going to kill off Spock so soon in the series — although it would get people talking. Plus, again, this sequence is probably from near the start of the film, because Kirk is in his ceremonial uniform.