In case you missed the hoopla, a lot of people got up in arms about the scene in Star Trek Into Darkness where Captain Kirk looks at Carol Marcus changing, and catches her in her bra and underwear. It’s a scene that was played up a lot in the movie’s trailers, but ultimately served no narrative purpose, drawing a lot of backlash.
Writer Damon Lindelof already apologized for the scene on Twitter, writing, “I copped to the fact that we should have done a better job of not being gratuitous in our representation of a barely clothed actress. We also had Kirk shirtless in underpants in both movies. Do not want to make light of something that some construe as mysogenistic. What I’m saying is I hear you, I take responsibility and will be more mindful in the future. Also, I need to learn how to spell ‘misogynistic.'”
Now director J.J. Abrams has come forward on TBS’s Conan to offer his own explanation for the inclusion of a nearly naked Alice Eve. He also said the scene was meant to balance the earlier one of Chris Pine shirtless, but admitted that his delivery of that idea was executed poorly.
“The intent was: it’s Kirk, who was always sort of this womanizing character. So the idea was, have a beat like that in the midst of all this action and adventure,” Abrams told host Conan O’Brien. “I don’t think I quite edited the scene in the right way. To me it was kind of a balance. … I can also see [the critics’] point of view.”
It turns out there almost was a third shirtless scene in the movie, but it was cut from the final version. As you can see in the above clip, it shows Benedict Cumberbatch taking what Abrams called a “shower of evil,” where he simply looked angry as water ran over him. Some fans might have loved the chance to see Cumberbatch shirtless and wet, but this also didn’t seem to serve any narrative purpose and was ultimately better served having O’Brien overlay porn music on it than being included in the movie.
Star Trek Into Darkness is in theaters now.