I need help.
But first, a little backstory.
After having the TV unceremoniously unplugged in my early teens, I never got back into the habit of watching television. It was strictly movies for me: no commercials, definite ending point. It wasn't til around the time of Six Feet Under that I finally considered that there might be some television actually worth watching; Babylon 5 followed, and then the Whedon dam broke with Firefly/Serenity. This led to the Buffy/Angel marathon of 2008, and the coda of Battlestar Galactica more recently.
With all these shows under my belt, I've come to a point where I lack any obvious contender for what to watch next. Dexter? House? I'm reaching.
But in the back of my mind I know what I have to do, and why I've resisted doing it until now.
The influence of Star Trek is hard for me to measure or understand. I enjoy Wil Wheaton's twitter musings and writing, yet have no perspective on where he comes from. I've seen only one or two of the films over the years (none of the big ones at any rate). The recent update renewed my interest, but I sensed something missing when I watched it with die-hard fans of the show; there was no way I could know what they were experiencing. I never used to mind this massive gap in my understanding of the cultural landscape, but as they say, to everything there is a proper time.
Here's where I need help.
I was always reluctant to dive into Star Trek largely because there was so damn much of it, counting all the different series'. But which ones do I watch?
My gut tells me that the original series and TNG are required viewing, but those two alone leave with ten-odd seasons to get through. I don't know if all of it is necessary, and if not, what I should watch and what I can skip over. I could just wing it, but in the interest of doing things properly (as I imagine anyone would want them done), I'm throwing this plea into the void.
Thank you in advance.