star trek: the original series

My favourite fact about Star Trek TOS is that, because automatic doors weren’t invented yet, the ‘automatic doors’ in TOS were really just some guy yanking a rope and pulley system to make them slide open. Problem was the person was far enough away that they couldn’t see when exactly the doors needed to be open, and relied on a signal from somebody just off set. The actors, however, had to act as if they were 100% confident the doors were going to open at the exact time and moment despite the fact that they occasionally did not which lead to multiple occasions in which the actors walked directly into the doors while they were opening. 

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In Memory of Crewman Darnell
The weather is too hot outside. The sun blazing in the sky, burning up anything left outside. Walking the dog is a chore, based on necessity, and taxing to be outside for even a few minutes. Wha…

Remembering the fallen crew members that sacrificed their all for the cause of space exploration.  Crewman Darnell, the first victim to the M-113 creature. 

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Star Trek Beyond is Delightfully Episodic - The Geekiary
Star Trek Beyond hearkens back to The Original Series, resulting in a different kind of film than the previous two installments of the rebooted universe.

Imagine you’re at a bar with you’re friends – who are all geeks because let’s be real you’re reading The Geekiary – and someone asks what you would do if you could write an episode of The Original Series with the cast of the reboot. Think about the kind of responses you would make, then imagine someone picked all the best bits and gave you a massive budget to make it a reality. That is Star Trek Beyond. That might sound awful, but somehow it works becauseStar Trek Beyond is a delightful romp through space.

ST:TOS: Man Trap & Charlie X

At the beginning of July all the Star Trek episodes became available on Netflix. I let out a squee heard ’round the world (it was, too, thanks to Twitter), because I’ve been wanting to watch it with Indy; I was a little younger than he was when I watched pretty well the entire original series (the, er, only series, at that point), and I think it’s a pretty great age to be introduced to Trek.

The non-Kirk pilot is not included, and the episodes are presented by air date rather than production date, which is…pretty clearly not ideal, but I’m not dedicated enough (especially since I’m watching with Indy) to hop around and watch them in production order.

So the story starts in media res with the pretty awful and yet in moments brilliant “The Man Trap,” where a salt-desperate alien able to take on the form of anybody that someone thinks strongly enough about kills several Enterprise crewmen in an attempt to survive. There are sexual politics at once embarrassing and not too horrible for their time, but the thing I liked most was how sympathetically, in the end, the alien was presented: she was the last of her species, not *bad*, but trying to survive. And there’s a straight-up amazing moment when she transforms into McCoy, and Deforest Kelly’s body language flawlessly mimics the actress playing the alien’s. My hat is off, sir.

The alien’s real, monstrous form, once revealed, was sufficiently scary to Indy that he told me he didn’t want to watch any more of that show, and (before he was in any danger of going to sleep) that he had had a bad dream about it. Fortunately, we’d bought a dreamcatcher for him while in North Carolina, so I put that up and all was well.

This morning he asked quite eagerly if we were going to watch more of “Star Trak” tonight. :)

So tonight we watched the second (aired) episode, “Charlie X,” and hot damn, people, Captain James T Kirk gives a straight-up lesson in consent to the teenage guest star in that episode:

Kirk: It’s not a one-way street, how you feel & that’s all. It’s how she feels, too. If she feels anything for you at all, you’ll know it. There are a million things in this universe you can have & a million things you can’t. It’s no fun facing that, but it’s the way things are.

I knew, in fact, that Kirk was generally a lot more progressive & outspoken about womens’ rights than his reductive image has made him. But the SECOND EPISODE. That was awesome. Also awesome is that I paused it there to ask Indy what had happened:

Me: Does he like that girl?
Indy: Yeah.
Me: Does she like him?
Indy: No.
Me: So what does that mean?
Indy: He should leave her alone!

Leaving me w/this cross sense of
1. My 6 year old gets this, &
2. Aren’t geeks supposed to admire/emulate Kirk? HERE’S A NUMBER TAKE A CLUE

Anyway, aside from excellent unexpected consent lessons, “Charlie X” is a really, *really* good episode. It’s chock full of behavioural lessons and impossible quandaries both for the crew and the guest star, and yeah, wow, that one knocked it right out of the park. (It was written by a woman, DC Fontana, and now I’m really looking forward to seeing more of her episodes.)

(Kirk’s costume changed almost every time he left the room and came back again. I noticed it, pointed it out to Indy, and Indy noticed it after that. :) But wow, the remastered colors! Some of those shirts really ARE green! And oh my, the dramatic lights falling across the eyes in key and tense moments… :))

(Also, oh, my, yes, Uhura really does flirt with Spock from the outset! I love it!)

(And the crew IS multi-ethnic! And there are women wearing pants! And…! !!!!)

Indy is looking forward to watching the next eposide tomorrow.

Ten Star Trek Episodes You Should Check Out on Netflix

Hooray for Netflix who have brought all six Star Trek series to its online streaming service, all for the 50th Anniversary of the long-running franchise.

I’ve been a fan of the Star Trek Universe since I was young and whilst I haven’t watched more than a few classics of the Original Series or beyond the first episode of the prequel series Enterprise, I’ve spent a great deal with the crew of The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine and Voyager.

So, because I can’t adequately give a verdict on the top ten best episodes of all of Star Trek, I thought I’d give you the ten that I think are either classic or are just good fun. There will be plenty missing, but I think this bunch are an assortment worth catching on Netflix

1. Cause and Effect - The Next Generation

Originally posted by startrekships

A masterpiece of writing and plotting, Cause and Effect see’s the crew of the Enterprise-D get caught in a time loop as the ship explodes and the crew slowly begin to realise the situation they’re in. It’s got a great hook and the way the plot develops is wonderfully intricate, plus Kelsey Grammer puts in a fun cameo as a captain caught in the same time loop but for decades. Who else would like to see a spin-off where he and his crew try to live in the modern world?

2. Q Who - The Next Generation

Originally posted by trekgate

The introduction of an omnipotent being in The Next Generation was a bold enough move yet when said being sent the Enterprise-D thousands of light years into deep space, they encountered The Borg, the emotionless, hostile Daleks of the Star Trek universe. In the rest of the Star Trek cannon the Borg have appeared countless times and in many cases, their mystery was stripped away. Yet here, like in The Next Generation Film ‘First Contact’, they are one of the scariest foes in Science Fiction.

3. The Inner Light - The Next Generation

Often sighted as one of the finest episodes in all of the Trek cannon, The Inner Light utilises the considerable acting talents of Patrick Stewart in an episode that is as beautiful as anything Star Trek has ever done. Picard believes he is living a life with a wife and children on another planet, whilst his life as Starship Captain is just a delusion. The complex performance from Stewart is a masterclass and the theme to accompany the episode is wonderful, both helping The Inner Light to become the classic it deserves to be.

4. Duet - Deep Space Nine

Deep Space Nine is often considered to be the gritty series. The one that’s about war and complex social issues and from the very start, it was clear that this was a show that was going to stand apart from what had come before it. Duet deals with Major Kira confronting a war criminal aboard DS9 who may or may not have led an internment camp that imprisoned members of her species.
Though DS9 went entirely against Gene Roddenberry’s peaceful vision, it succeeded because it stood by its convictions and turned most of its run into one overarching story set against the backdrop of a war. It was dark, morally complex and like nothing else on TV.

5. Trials and Tribble-ations - Deep Space Nine

Originally posted by starscream-and-hutch

What could have been a cheesy disaster, this Original Series crossover was a spot of light relief and nostalgia in the middle of the show’s larger story. Part of the reason it works was because the special effects worked surprisingly well, with a number of DS9 characters spliced into scenes from TOS episode The Trouble with Tribbles. It’s one for the fans, sure, but it’s damned fun and shows that DS9 was as capable doing comedy as it was drama.

6. In the Pale Moonlight - Deep Space Nine

Originally posted by trekgate

However, compared to the above episode, In the Pale Moonlight was DS9 at it’s dramatic best. It raises issues of such moral complexity using a framing device of Sisco talking to his ships log in order to tell us how he came to make one of the most important decisions in the war. It’s brilliantly written, impeccably performed and is proof of the shows more mature themes.

7. Scorpion Part 1 and 2 - Voyager

Originally posted by captaincrusher

Now to Voyager which, despite being the less popular series in the franchise, has a lot of stuff to love about. Its initial concept is a nifty one and it has a good crew who provide some interesting stories throughout its seven seasons. This two-parter saw the return of The Borg, something Voyager did a lot, and it see’s the lost Federation crew come across the only species threatening the life of The Borg collective, Species 8472.
Not only does it present an interesting argument, utilising the story of the frog and the scorpion as a metaphor for their union, but it introduces us to Seven of Nine, who was rescued from the collective and reintegrated into humanity as a member of the crew.

8. Year of Hell Part 1 and 2 - Voyager

Originally posted by captainsassistant

I found that Voyager tended to do better when its stories could go across two episodes and Year of Hell was no exception. Though of course, it would wind back time at the end, it was a fun couple of episodes to dive into a what if scenario.
A lot of criticism that is levelled at Voyager is that it had a lot of squandered potential. The concept was there, setting it in the unexplored Delta quadrant as the crew attempt to get home but it often resorted to the same old stories. As good as Year of Hell is, it does kind of reflect how the show wasn’t as prepared to do anything drastic with the characters and would always have everything sort of revert to the same place at the end of each season.

9. Blink of an Eye - Voyager

Originally posted by voyagerismycollective

The most memorable episodes are always the high concept ones and this is no different. Voyager gets caught in the gravity of a planet where it’s time passes much quicker on the surface than in Space and it makes for an interesting and engaging watch as they become a part of the planet’s mythology and history. Star Trek could always do some interesting things with its scientific stories and Voyager managed to bring the franchise back to exploring planets like its forebearer TNG and TOS did.

10. Mirror, Mirror - The Original Series

Originally posted by giantmonster

As I’ve said, I actually haven’t watched every episode of The Original Series but I wanted to single out this one particular episode that I have enjoyed in the past. The show wasn’t just about aliens, it also had a lot of time travel and in this case, dimension travel. This was the first time that we ever saw the mirror universe, the world that would crop up again down the line a lot in DS9 and it was one of the shows biggest ideas.
I could’ve also plumped for City on the Edge of Forever or Space Seed, both of which are practically hard-core Sci-Fi classics, but in this case, I wanted to go for something a little less obvious.

But yeah, with a lot, and I mean a lot of Star Trek episodes on Netflix, what are your favourites?