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Star Trek - Original Series The one that started it all...

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Old March 14 2013, 03:09 AM   #1
AggieJohn
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What would a TOS spin off look like

I had a thought today. Lets say that the TOS had received the proper fan base that it enjoys now back when it was originally airing, to the point that they created spin offs like they did for the TNG. What concept or episodes would have made for good spin off material?

I understand that spin off's were not common in the 1960's but just humor me. DS9 played heavy on the Borg and Cardassian occupation episodes of TNG, as did Voyager to a lesser degree. Was there any reoccurring characters or overarching plots that they kept coming back to?

One that came to mind was the border dispute between the Klingons and Federation, perhaps taking place on K-7. The show being like DS9?
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Old March 14 2013, 03:18 AM   #2
Christopher
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

It might look something like this...

There were actually a fair number of spinoffs in the '60s. For instance, The Andy Griffith Show was one of several spinoffs of The Danny Thomas Show and in turn spun off Gomer Pyle. (There's also Mayberry R.F.D., which was just a continuation of TAGS after Griffith left.) The Man from U.N.C.L.E. spun off The Girl from U.N.C.L.E. And so on.
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Old March 14 2013, 07:16 AM   #3
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

If the ratings had been high, the network might have said "Let's give Spock his own show." That's how the suits think, it seems to me.
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Old March 14 2013, 01:34 PM   #4
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

I believe there were plans to make a spinoff with Gary 7 (from Assignment:Earth) as linked in Christopher's post, but it never came about, unfortunately.
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Old March 14 2013, 02:03 PM   #5
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

Assignment: Earth still sounds like a pretty good idea for a science-fiction show. I don't see why it shouldn't be considered.
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Old March 14 2013, 02:15 PM   #6
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

The Mirrorball Man wrote: View Post
Assignment: Earth still sounds like a pretty good idea for a science-fiction show. I don't see why it shouldn't be considered.
I also think the concept would continue to work, today. It is too bad that it didn't take off in the 60s and even now I don't really know why NBC didn't run with it. I'd love to hear what the 'suits' said when they were discussing it.
I clicked on the link provided by Christopher, above, and listened to the 2 imagined theme songs. I like the first one the best.
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Old March 14 2013, 02:31 PM   #7
22 Stars
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

Inspector Space Time.

Really Assignment: Earth is Dr. Who but primarily Earth-based as a cost saving measure.
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Old March 14 2013, 02:33 PM   #8
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

The Mirrorball Man wrote: View Post
Assignment: Earth still sounds like a pretty good idea for a science-fiction show. I don't see why it shouldn't be considered.
It's perfect for today's market, since it takes place "now" and has a male female team of investigators.
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Old March 14 2013, 02:34 PM   #9
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

Star Trek: Deep Space K-7. Starring Stanley Adams, William Campbell, and William Schallert as Nilz Barris.
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Old March 14 2013, 02:51 PM   #10
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

22 Stars wrote: View Post
Inspector Space Time.

Really Assignment: Earth is Dr. Who but primarily Earth-based as a cost saving measure.
Gary Seven even has a sonic screwdriver!
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Old March 14 2013, 03:44 PM   #11
Christopher
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

ZapBrannigan wrote: View Post
If the ratings had been high, the network might have said "Let's give Spock his own show." That's how the suits think, it seems to me.
What they evidently wanted was for Spock to be the star of the show he was already on. They kept pushing for more Spock-centric episodes, seeing how hugely popular he was with the fans. If Roddenberry and Shatner hadn't fought so hard to keep Kirk in the lead (and if Isaac Asimov hadn't made the suggestion to GR to play up the Kirk-Spock friendship so that the two would be inseparable), then Spock might've ended up taking over the show the way Fonzie later took over Happy Days.


Jim Gamma wrote: View Post
I believe there were plans to make a spinoff with Gary 7 (from Assignment:Earth) as linked in Christopher's post, but it never came about, unfortunately.
In fact, Assignment: Earth was originally a pilot for a standalone, non-Trek-related half-hour series that Roddenberry wrote in 1966, during TOS's first season. In it, Gary Seven was a time traveler from 2319, sent back to prevent the demonic Omegan aliens from changing Earth history to prevent the rise of a Federation-like interstellar civilization. You can read about it here. I've read the script, and it was pretty bad, playing more like an attempt at a sitcom in the vein of My Favorite Martian than an adventure drama. After it was -- quite rightly -- rejected, Roddenberry worked with Art Wallace to develop a second version as a Star Trek spinoff, writing a series pitch for the spinoff in early December 1967 and then writing the script for the ST episode as a backdoor pilot for the spinoff. This version would've made a much better series than the half-hour pseudo-sitcom version.


The Mirrorball Man wrote: View Post
Assignment: Earth still sounds like a pretty good idea for a science-fiction show. I don't see why it shouldn't be considered.
I believe there were some efforts a few years back on the part of Majel and/or Rod Roddenberry to develop an updated (and presumably non-Trek-related) version of A:E, along with their efforts to develop new series based on other Roddenberry properties.

And I agree -- a rebooted version of A:E (or The Questor Tapes, which was basically a rehash of the exact same premise but with an android lead) could make for an interesting series. There was an attempt by TQT's co-developer Herb Wright to make a new series of that, but sadly the project fell through when Wright passed away in 2005.


22 Stars wrote: View Post
Really Assignment: Earth is Dr. Who but primarily Earth-based as a cost saving measure.
I don't know why people say that. Sure, in the rejected pilot version, Gary Seven was a time traveler, but in the version we know, he wasn't. There are some coincidental similarities to the early-'70s phase of Doctor Who where the Third Doctor was exiled to Earth and working with UNIT to defend present-day Earth, but that was not a typical period of Who history, and it was itself something of an imitation of the popular Professor Quatermass serials. I guess there's a vague similiarity in the formula of a superhuman male lead with advanced technology and alien knowledge working with a young female human companion who provides audience identification, but Gary's specific personality and agenda are very, very different from any incarnation of the Doctor.

Some people even think "Assignment: Earth" was a deliberate copy of Doctor Who, but that's rubbish. It's unlikely that anyone in Hollywood at the time was familiar with DW, since it didn't begin showing in parts of the US until the '70s; and most of the similar elements -- the Earth-based setting, the sonic screwdriver -- were introduced to DW after they were conceived for A:E. (The sonic screwdriver made its screen debut just 13 days before "Assignment: Earth" aired, but as stated, the original A:E pilot was written over a year and a half earlier, and it did feature the servo and Gary's other familiar gadgets.)
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Old March 14 2013, 03:45 PM   #12
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

While TNG and ENT wouldn't have worked at the same time as TOS was on, the concepts for DS9 and VOY could have formed the basis for shows. The first is alluded to above with the idea of a "K-7" series.
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Old March 14 2013, 04:15 PM   #13
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

The problem with the idea of a Voyager-like TOS spinoff is that it would've been kind of redundant. The premise of Voyager was meant to be about getting back to a TOS-style series, with the ship and captain off in the wild frontier and being entirely on their own rather than constantly calling on Starfleet for help and guidance. (Which, ironically, was what TNG itself was originally meant to be; that series started with the Enterprise-D at the most remote Federation outpost in existence and travelling outward from there. But almost immediately, you had the E-D helping another Starfleet ship in jeopardy, delivering a vaccine to a Federation world, and so on, so that premise never really got started.)

Not to mention that Lost in Space was already on the air, so a Trek series about a lost ship trying to get home would've seemed very derivative.

A DS9-like premise could perhaps have worked. After all, the idea behind DS9 was to do The Rifleman in space, analogously to how TOS had been pitched as Wagon Train in space. So it would've fit right in to the Western-dominated TV landscape of the '60s. Although it wouldn't have had the serialized elements that DS9 had.
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Old March 14 2013, 04:33 PM   #14
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

Christopher wrote: View Post
The premise of Voyager was meant to be about getting back to a TOS-style series, with the ship and captain off in the wild frontier and being entirely on their own rather than constantly calling on Starfleet for help and guidance.
Yeah, but TOS didn't have the Enterprise constantly on its own away from the federation, in fact it ran into other Starfleet ships and facilities several times.

(Which, ironically, was what TNG itself was originally meant to be; that series started with the Enterprise-D at the most remote Federation outpost in existence and travelling outward from there. But almost immediately, you had the E-D helping another Starfleet ship in jeopardy, delivering a vaccine to a Federation world, and so on, so that premise never really got started.)
Except thats what TOS did on occasion.
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Old March 14 2013, 05:04 PM   #15
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Re: What would a TOS spin off look like

Christopher;7800736then Spock might've ended up taking over the show the way Fonzie later took over [I wrote:
Happy Days[/I].
Yeah, and we remember how well that worked: Fonzie solves all problems like a resident psychologist...and the "aaayyyyy!!" business. Thankfully, TOS focused on the friendship/teamwork of Kirk and Spock.


I don't know why people say that. Sure, in the rejected pilot version, Gary Seven was a time traveler, but in the version we know, he wasn't. There are some coincidental similarities to the early-'70s phase of Doctor Who where the Third Doctor was exiled to Earth and working with UNIT to defend present-day Earth, but that was not a typical period of Who history, and it was itself something of an imitation of the popular Professor Quatermass serials.
I was going to post something along the same lines, but thanks for adding the historical perspective. Some fans honestly forget--specifcally, the Doctor's third incarnation (Pertwee) and hip, somewhat flummoxed assistant (Jo Grant of his three companions) could be said to be patterned after Gary 7/Roberta than the other way around, since the Roddenberry/Wallace story predated the Pertwee Who by some time.

Then, there's the G7 Servo / Sonic Screwdriver matter, which you covered. There's no reason for anyone to believe G7 was based on Doctor Who.
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