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Old December 13 2014, 05:19 AM   #1
Enterprise1701
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TOS: Shadow of the Machine - discussion

From Amazon, here is the blurb for Scott Harrison's repeatedly delayed e-novella, due out the 9th of March 2015:
An all-new original e-novella set in the Original Series universe—taking place immediately after the events of the 1979 film Star Trek: The Motion Picture!

After its recent encounter with V’ger, the U.S.S. Enterprise has returned to dry dock to finish its refit before commencing its second five-year mission. The crew has been granted a two-week period of shore leave before preparations for their next voyage begins. Shaken by their encounter with V’ger, Kirk, Spock, and Sulu travel to their respective homes and must reflect upon their lives—now forever changed.
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...fsguitothet-20
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Last edited by trampledamage; January 4 2015 at 04:37 AM.
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Old December 13 2014, 07:35 AM   #2
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

Be interesting to see if this meshes with Christopher's Ex Machina, continuity-wise. Doesn't that story pick up around two weeks or so following the movie? If so, there might not be any real problems, as far as the two-week window goes.

Also, I seem to recall the DC Comics graphic novel Debt of Honor and the first issue of Marvel's Untold Voyages mini-series likewise giving us some immediate post-TMP events, but sadly doubt either of these will be acknowledged.
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Old December 13 2014, 10:05 AM   #3
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

Leto_II wrote: View Post
Be interesting to see if this meshes with Christopher's Ex Machina, continuity-wise. Doesn't that story pick up around two weeks or so following the movie? If so, there might not be any real problems, as far as the two-week window goes.
Two months, actually.
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Old December 13 2014, 10:56 AM   #4
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

I'm going to read it for sure, but the blurb sounds like an unexciting character piece.
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Old December 13 2014, 03:12 PM   #5
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

Idran wrote: View Post
Leto_II wrote: View Post
Be interesting to see if this meshes with Christopher's Ex Machina, continuity-wise. Doesn't that story pick up around two weeks or so following the movie? If so, there might not be any real problems, as far as the two-week window goes.
Two months, actually.
I don't know where you got two months. In fact, ExM picks up exactly ten days after the end of TMP, and there's no return home in it. After all, the movie ended with Kirk ordering the ship "Out there.. thataway." The Enterprise travels to Starbase 22 and gets its final bits of work done there, and Kirk spends the time in intensive study of the ship's new systems. There's no room in the novel for any 2-week leave. So unless the blurb is inaccurate, it sounds like this novella is going to be an alternative interpretation of post-TMP events.

I wonder how many alternate takes on the events just after TMP there are. Marvel's "The Haunting of Thallus" in 1980 takes place after a successful shakedown cruise, and there's no telling how long that cruise took; and there's no specific reference to the film's events. So I don't think it would count as immediately post-V'Ger. Similarly, the newspaper comic opens with a routine mission that (if you ignore the erroneous inclusion of Ilia in the first few strips) could easily take place months or years after the movie.

So there's the Debt of Honor version, which has Kirk ordering the ship to backtrack V'Ger's course. There's the Untold Voyages version, which actually opens with the final scene of TMP and continues directly from there as a Klingon commander attempts to capture the newly upgraded Enterprise. There's the Ex Machina version, as discussed. There's this new one in Shadow of the Machine. And there's the Crucible version, which says that the ship went on a month-long shakedown and completed a couple of missions in the interim. Crucible is inconsistent with the main novel continuity to which ExM belongs, but it could theoretically be reconcilable with one or more of the other versions. So that's 4 or 5 distinct versions of the events immediately post-TMP. Which is fewer than the number of versions of the end of the 5-year mission; there are at least 7 of those by this point. (The Lost Years, DC's "The Final Voyage" and "A Bright Particular Star," ExM/Forgotten History, Crucible, IDW's Mission's End, and "Empty" in Strange New Worlds 10.)
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Old December 13 2014, 04:26 PM   #6
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

Markonian wrote: View Post
I'm going to read it for sure, but the blurb sounds like an unexciting character piece.
Would you prefer: The Enterprise visits the planet Exposition IV where an ancient device threatens the future of the Federation! And Spock falls in love! Kirk talks a machine into switching itself off!
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Old December 13 2014, 04:45 PM   #7
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

Why would Pocket allow this after publishing Ex Machina, The More Things Change, and Forgotten History and linking those to other current continuity novels?
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Old December 13 2014, 05:49 PM   #8
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

Enterprise1701 wrote: View Post
Why would Pocket allow this after publishing Ex Machina, The More Things Change, and Forgotten History and linking those to other current continuity novels?
Even though having all the books in step which each other, they don't have to be and it depends on the quality of the story, not if it is ok with x, y and z.
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Old December 13 2014, 05:57 PM   #9
Idran
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

Christopher wrote: View Post
Idran wrote: View Post
Leto_II wrote: View Post
Be interesting to see if this meshes with Christopher's Ex Machina, continuity-wise. Doesn't that story pick up around two weeks or so following the movie? If so, there might not be any real problems, as far as the two-week window goes.
Two months, actually.
I don't know where you got two months. In fact, ExM picks up exactly ten days after the end of TMP, and there's no return home in it.
Oh, bah, I see what happened; I've been putting together a chronology, and for the date of Ex Machina I was going off of your Forgotten History annotations that placed the end of Ex Machina two months after TMP, as the events of the novel didn't seem to take more than a week or two. I missed the reference to two weeks after TMP right on the first page, though, and I guess the issue in my dating was I forgot to take into account travel time to Lorina in the first place. Thanks for the correction!
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Old December 13 2014, 07:12 PM   #10
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

Enterprise1701 wrote: View Post
Why would Pocket allow this after publishing Ex Machina, The More Things Change, and Forgotten History and linking those to other current continuity novels?
What do you mean, "allow?" It's not like there's anything wrong with it. Star Trek tie-ins have always featured multiple alternative continuities. The main novel continuity has never precluded the existence of alternative or standalone works like the Shatnerverse or Crucible. Continuity among novels is an option, not a mandate. I chose to tie ExM into the main novel continuity because I wanted to. Scott Pearson chose to reconcile TMTC with the ExM continuity because he wanted to. But if an author comes along with a story that's best served by standing apart from the main continuity, there's no reason that shouldn't be "allowed."


Idran wrote: View Post
Oh, bah, I see what happened; I've been putting together a chronology, and for the date of Ex Machina I was going off of your Forgotten History annotations that placed the end of Ex Machina two months after TMP, as the events of the novel didn't seem to take more than a week or two. I missed the reference to two weeks after TMP right on the first page, though, and I guess the issue in my dating was I forgot to take into account travel time to Lorina in the first place. Thanks for the correction!
Actually I have ExM beginning 8 days after TMP (the first scene on the Enterprise being 2 days after that) and ending 40 days after TMP. So it's more like a month and a half. I was pretty rough in my estimates in the FH annotations.
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Old December 18 2014, 03:37 AM   #11
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

The only franchise I know that has a lot of tie-ins and (tries to) keep them all consistent is Star Wars. Despite that, I'm pretty sure discrepancies have still popped up there over the years.
Not to mention that they've also done some stories that were specifically set outside of the continuity.
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Old December 18 2014, 03:53 AM   #12
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

JD wrote: View Post
The only franchise I know that has a lot of tie-ins and (tries to) keep them all consistent is Star Wars.
The Babylon 5 novel series also has quite the novel run, although the last book was published over 10 years ago, and some of the books (such as the ones in the "Telepath War"Arc are canon
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Old December 18 2014, 03:59 AM   #13
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

JD wrote: View Post
The only franchise I know that has a lot of tie-ins and (tries to) keep them all consistent is Star Wars. Despite that, I'm pretty sure discrepancies have still popped up there over the years.
Not to mention that they've also done some stories that were specifically set outside of the continuity.
Not to mention that they've recently decided that all the books and comics that were formerly alleged to be in continuity are now officially out of continuity.
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Old December 18 2014, 05:13 AM   #14
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

Yeah, good point. Although they are starting a new continuity, that is supposed to be even more tightly connected. They created a whole group whose purpose is to oversee everything and make sure it all stays consistent, or at least all of the movies, TV shows, novels and comics.
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Old December 18 2014, 05:24 AM   #15
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Re: Blurb for Shadow of the Machine now up

^Yeah, but that's what they said about the previous "Expanded Universe," until they decided to throw it out. That's the thing about "secondary canon" -- it's secondary. Heck, even primary canon is subject to contradiction -- ask Bobby Ewing from Dallas -- so "canonical" tie-ins are even more so. One can certainly try to keep tie-ins consistent, but there's no guarantee that they'll stay that way forever.
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