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JSngry

Star Trek TV Show

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Seriously, until last week I have never, not once, seen a complete episode of the original Star Trek TV show. My hair stylist nearly stabbed me with her scissors when I told her this yesterday, so...I know. Never watched the movies, or the follow-up serieses although Next Generation was on my radar very infrequently in real time, and not unpleasantly so.

Anyway they gots it on the Netflix, and I figure now is as good a time as any, and I'm up to about Episode 10 of Season 1. Not enraptured or anything, but am really enjoying it and plan to watch it on out.

I would really appreciate any tips on what to look out for (good and/or bad) as the series develops, good or bad. No real spoiler alerts if meaningly impactful though, please.

Right now, I'm already sensing the whole "social commentary" thing, which as retro as it comes off now, has not yet taken on the heavy-handed silliness that it migh, or at least not yet.

Otherwise, what I've noticed as constants so far are:

  • Legs of women
  • Landscapes like the Outward Bound cover or some such
  • Colors like Sun Ra
  • Shirtless Shatner...was this really a thing back in the day, shirtless Shatner? Kinda kreepy if you ask me, although thankfully not present in the episode where they land on the planet with all the kids whose growth is slowed down and Kim Darby gets a Kirk Krush...I kept telling LTB, keep your shirt on for thios one Kirk, PLEASE keep your shirt on for this one, because that would have been SO inappropriate, no matter where what or when.
  • I have actually seen Leonard Nimoy's complete run as Paris on Mission Impossible before seeing him as Spock, but Leonard Nimoy appears to have been no slouch at delivering character after all, actually,
  • Women legs for days. Does this yeoman stick around for the duration? Uhura does, right?

So if you like, talk about Star Trek, the TV show, the original one. Please?

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Really dug it when I was a kid - it was on after school and on Saturdays in the late morning. Haven't really seen it in decades but there are still some very memorable episodes - tribbles being among the most hilarious, but some of them got into some heavy, dark vibes at the time. Sorry I can't offer more than that, but I would enjoy re-watching these.

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Not a Trekkie and didn't see the show when it originally aired, but went through a period of digging it on late-night TV in the '80s. I've only seen the original series, not the many sequels.

The shirtless Shatner is a bizarre first-season artifact (as were some Kirk fistfights iirc) - I figure the network was searching for an audience and trying to draw the female demographic to the sci-fi genre. I loved the twofer "Menagerie" premiere episode, but apparently it was kind of a mash-up after the original pilot was rejected by the network as "too cerebral".

Uhura's a staple throughout, and overall there are many women in skimpy '60s attire. Couple of things: the Romulans are fearsome badasses, and there's a cool episode in which Spock goes into the Vulcan equivalent of heat and has to return home for a mating ritual.

Edited by T.D.

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Remember seeing it on the box when it was first transmitted here - around '69 or '70. A highlight of the mid-week viewing at the time.

The TV offerings at the time from the US were either this, 'Rat Patrol' or the latest Vietnam news footage. Surreal !

Edited by sidewinder

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Been a fan since around age 9. My introduction was the first feature film (Star Trek: The Motion Picture) and that inspired me to watch the original show. Luckily it seemed to perpetually be airing in syndication in the early 80s. I watched season 2 again recently and found I still enjoy it as much as ever. Not every episode works and yes, it can get a tad preachy at times, but overall very entertaining and there are some definite classic sci-fi stories in the run of the series.

I've seen the original series several times, I also watched The Next Generation and Enterprise and I've seen all the theatrical films. Was never crazy about either Voyager or Deep Space Nine, I've seen some episodes but never the complete run of either.

I'll think on it for a bit and make a list of my favorite episodes from the original run.

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I saw the original series first back in the 60's when it was first shown on UK tv. I've since seen it several times and although it seems very clunky and dated, some of the stories still hold up.

I'd mention The Menagerie and The City On The Edge Of Forever as two of the most memorable.

The follow on series never really grabbed me but I did quite get into Voyager; the basic plot line of returning from the other side of the galaxy was interesting.

I've still not seen all of it, like many US tv series there were too many episodes made with an eye on syndication.

Loved both the 'reboot' films though.

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City on the Edge of Forever was definitely a high point for the series (and Harlan Ellison, as far as I'm concerned). The 'revitalized color' version that's out now is a bit much to me; it's like watching those early colorized movies of Ted Turner's.

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I can't have Shatner at ANY price

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Season three was a bit of a let down. But after watching that series, follow it up with the cartoon series, done a few years later. Those were great -- short and to the point. I hated the 80's shows.

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Just wait until you get to the episode featuring Frank Gorshin as an extraterrestrial deli favorite (one with less than six degrees of separation from Seinfeld)!

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If you ever get around to Next Gen, it doesn't really hit its stride until the 3rd season. Most of season #1 (Next Gen) is downright aweful, and so is nearly half of Season #2 (again, Next Gen).

Riker grew the beard between S's 2 and 3, so the quick rule of thumb is to ignore anything with clean-shaven Riker.

Also, Jim, how in the hell did you make it this far without having ever seen even one original series episode? Really, how?

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Also, Jim, how in the hell did you make it this far without having ever seen even one original series episode? Really, how?

Just...always did something else instead. There was always something else to do.

Some pop culture stuff is so pervasive that you pick up on the gists of it through through osmosis without ever going to the source. Star Trek was one of those things for me.

That, and I'm not too much for space fantasy. Not hostile to it, just, given a chance between, for example, going record hunting and watching Star Trek reruns, seems like I always chose record hunting. And for weekday afternoon stoner fare, as mentioned elsewhere, Green Acres got the call.

So, yeah, always seemed to be something else to do. But I'm doing it now!

Looking forward to Frank Gorshin in a deli. I always look forward to Frank Gorshin!

And speaking of women legs on Star Trek, Sally Kellerman! Whatever happened to Sally Kellerman? She made an album for Verve, you know.

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If you ever get around to Next Gen, it doesn't really hit its stride until the 3rd season. Most of season #1 (Next Gen) is downright aweful, and so is nearly half of Season #2 (again, Next Gen).

Riker grew the beard between S's 2 and 3, so the quick rule of thumb is to ignore anything with clean-shaven Riker.

Agreed. These I did see not all that long ago.

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Know more about this topic than I care to admit and, thankfully, am too busy to reveal all. Will note that the quality of the writing in the first season was generally excellent -- many favorite episodes but one that stands out for me is the cat-and-mouse match between Kirk and the Vulcan commander in "Balance of Terror." The second season is more hit and miss -- some real high points but also more clichés and more what one author calls "puzzle-box" episodess where the conflicts are less truly character driven and more plot driven -- where the good guys find themselves in danger and KIrk extricates everyone safely (except the one extra you don't recognize who beams down to some planet and gets killed in the first act) while simultaneously solving some longstanding problem on the planet and ending with a bit of moralizing. Third season is a further definite drop off in quality of the writing.

I have no idea how you got to your age without seeing this show.

Edited by Mark Stryker

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Know more about this topic than I care to admit and, thankfully, am too busy to reveal all. Will note that the quality of the writing in the first season was generally excellent -- many favorite episodes but one that stands out for me is the cat-and-mouse match between Kirk and the Vulcan commander in "Balance of Terror." The second season is more hit and miss -- some real high points but also more clichés and more what one author calls "puzzle-box" episodess where the conflicts are less truly character driven and more plot driven -- where the good guys find themselves in danger and KIrk extricates everyone safely (except the one extra you don't recognize who beams down to some planet and gets killed in the first act) while simultaneously solving some longstanding problem on the planet and ending with a bit of moralizing. Third season is a further definite drop off in quality of the writing.

I have no idea how you got to your age without seeing this show.

Fully agree. Season 1 was great and "Balance of Terror" is a must-see. Lots to enjoy in the second season. By Season 3, Gene Roddenberry wasn't as involved, the budget was slashed and there were a lot of bad episodes. That being said, the hippy episode is a guilty pleasure. Shatner's acting and over-acting remain a source of enjoyment. It's pretty sexist by today's standards, though Season 2's "The Apple" does feature a memorable scene where Celeste Yarnell's character takes down a couple of aliens on a planet of Buddy Ebsen lookalikes.

If you ever get around to Next Gen, it doesn't really hit its stride until the 3rd season. Most of season #1 (Next Gen) is downright aweful, and so is nearly half of Season #2 (again, Next Gen).

Riker grew the beard between S's 2 and 3, so the quick rule of thumb is to ignore anything with clean-shaven Riker.

Also, Jim, how in the hell did you make it this far without having ever seen even one original series episode? Really, how?

That is a good rule. Similar thing with Voyager--it got better once Janeway took her hair out of the bun.

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Kirk fist fights

Kirk love affairs with ET women

Bones, "I'm a doctor Jim, not a ____" fill in the blank

Scotty: "The warp drive are melted " but I'll have them fixed in 30 minutes.

Shields!

Bridge Zulu!

Try subspace frequency Uhuru!

And, of course, "Beam us up, Scotty!"

Saw these first run on TV. Nevertheless, preferred Next Generation.

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I'm both a fan and not a fan. My late wife hated it and said she saw all sorts of chauvinistic things and yeah, some are in there. The philosophical things are often on the sleeve which is a pet peeve of mine (subtlety is a better road to travel imo). Some of the aliens and the sets were so ridiculous, even for the time.

I watched these in the early 'seventies on repeat (was in Afirca all the broadcast years) and they never did much for me, then I watched the whole series again on disc in '12 and '13.

The remastered material on Blu-ray looks and sounds fantastic.

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One favorite story concerns the conventions of television drama vs. the realities of intergalactic travel: It makes no sense that they wouldn't have seat belts on the chairs on the bridge, so that whenever the ship gets hit with enemy fire or turbulence the crew wouldn't go flying. The producers used to get letters from fans asking, "Why don't you just seat belts on the bridge?" The answer was simple: "If we did, the actors couldn't fall out of their chairs."

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This idea that the show somehow was a critique of the Vietnam war. On reflection doubt that was entirely the case. In essence, the show was about the imposition of American power (even though an international crew) through the use of powerful craft (like a huge aircraft carrier), to impose our will on recalcitrant aliens. Given a good fair and square fistfight we'd always prevail, not like ducking through jungles. Differences were settled, but it usually took a few photon torpedos and cannon fire to do it. Maybe that was its appeal.

BTW, the guy on the "away team" whom you never saw in previous episodes, always got killed. Was usually wearing a red shirt.

Edited by Leeway

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I'm a hopeless fanatic for all the series, despite occasional lapses in the writing ("Spock's Brain," anyone?!). I think what makes Trek different (and often, better) than so many other sci-fi series/movies is its innate optimism. Unlike the truly *endless* dystopian future movies that have appeared and continue to appear constantly on the big and small screens, Trek posited the rather daring notion that people might actually come together and accomplish things, that the future would not be a nightmare, but better than the present or the past.

That said, I have the original series on blu-ray, and I have to say, blu-ray isn't very kind to mid-60s TV makeup! You can see the seams in Spock's ears, and too many of the alien "masks" look even cheesier than they did fifty years ago. If one can get by that, my favorites are "Corbomite Manouver," "Balance of Terror," and, of course, "The Trouble with Tribbles." The last showed that, while Shatner too often overacted in dramatic scenes, he was really a very good light comic actor. One of the reasons I really liked "Boston Legal."

gregmo

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The 'revitalized color' version that's out now is a bit much to me; it's like watching those early colorized movies of Ted Turner's.

So those are not the original colors just cleaned up? They're actually altered?

Not knowing the original, I have to say that I love these colors, but also getting the whole digital "tampering" thing, that's kind of a drag as well.

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I have no idea how you got to your age without seeing this show.

If I had a dollar, no, dime, no...PENNY...I'd be rich enough for all of us combined, then now and tomorrow!

Dude, I have so many holes in my "cultural experiences" it's not funny. Never seen Gone With The Wind either, other than in passing. And that's just a start. Not necessarily proud or ashamed of it, just have gone where I've gone when I felt the want/need to go there.

As it pertains to Star Trek specifically - didn't watch the show in first run. Like I said, not hardcore stuck on spacefantasy. Reruns began in the 70s, and outside of two years in the dorm where the TV was communal, I went through college without a TV. Again, other priorities, and when SNL or Soundstage or something else came on, there were watching parties available. Daily reruns, not so much. After college, went on the road, TV was not a priority there either. Came off the road, settled down, started a family, etc. Music and family were main priorities. Watched plenty of TV, but mostly children's shows, Prime/Night Time faves, and late night oddities. The notion of Star Trek just never entered my mind. Don't miss what you never had, something like that. Time passed, the movies and after-shows started coming out, and other than a few Next Generation moments, I was like, well, no sense in watching these until I've seen the original, and next thing you know, it was 2015. Here we are!

At least you're not glaring at me with scissors in your hand the way my hair stylist did. It's a good thing I've been seeing her for 15+ years and have developed a real sense of trust with er. Otherwise, if looks could kill...and scissors can!

Odd as it no doubt is relative to the general population, it just happened like that.

Otherwise, really enjoying all the comments here, what people like/dislike, all the various observations. Better here than at a Trekkie convention? Or not?

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I think those are the original colors, just the resolution reveals the flaws.

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The 'revitalized color' version that's out now is a bit much to me; it's like watching those early colorized movies of Ted Turner's.

So those are not the original colors just cleaned up? They're actually altered?

Not knowing the original, I have to say that I love these colors, but also getting the whole digital "tampering" thing, that's kind of a drag as well.

The version of Star Trek you're watching on Netflix are the blu-ray special edition versions with the replaced special effects. They retain the original intent of the fx from the series, but they have all been redone using CGI. All the outer space and planet shots have been replaced, they also replaced some of the horribly bad matte paintings from the original series. This was mostly done because the nature of how these FX were done at the time would have made the scenes with effects look far worse than the scenes without when it comes to picture quality. Most people don't even realize it's CG because they kept the "late 60s cheesy look" so it would match.

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My favorite things about Star Trek...

Barbara Luna, France Nuyen, Yvonne Craig, Sherry Jackson, Nancy Kovack, Marianna Hill, Sharon Acker...

And it wasn't ALL about the legs!

Oh, and I've never seen a full episode of Seinfeld, or Cheers, or Hill Street Blues, or The Simpsons, or Survivor, or American Idol, or South Park, or...

And I've yet to see The Godfather. Gone With The Wind was wayyyy too long, imo, btw.

Edited by Jim R

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