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

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Old March 13 2013, 02:32 AM   #1
ZapBrannigan
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The Witches of East-Trek

There are certain sci-fi plot devices that are hard to distinguish from supernatural stories. STAR TREK veered into this territory all the time.

In The Cage, the Talosians create illusions that might as well be spells they cast.

In WNM, Gary Mitchell and Elizabeth Dehner gain powers that are a lot like magic. An alternate interpretation is to say they were possessed. But since Dehner wasn't possessed by an evil force, it seems that Mitchell was just a bad guy waiting to happen.

What about Charlie X, and the somewhat similar case of Captain Garth in Whom Gods Destroy? Somebody taught them magic.

Catspaw was made expressly as a Halloween episode to air in October, and it calls the witches by name. The themes include both possession and magic.

Wolf in the Fold (SPOILER ALERT) is a demonic possession story that goes all the way into horror. Scotty is possessed and he murders two women. This being TV, once the explanation comes out, all is forgiven. It's an incredibly lucky outcome for Scotty, what with all the blood on his hands.

Or did the demon stay in Mr Hengist the whole time, and just cause Scotty to black out? That sanitizes Scotty, but Act IV clearly shows the demon's ability to jump from person to person. Why not possess Scotty to kill the women? Poor Mr Hengist from Rigel IV, who's just another victim of possession, is holding the bag when Kirk needs to kill the demon. That's an unlucky guy, and his death is not memorialized in the slightest.

The Lights of Zetar is another possession story, with a ghost angle, and it could have been a lot scarier if they'd wanted it to be. Like (and I shouldn't say this), if JJ Abrams remade it as a horror film, it could creep the crap out of people. But the TV version was pretty mild.
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Old March 13 2013, 11:00 AM   #2
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek

ZapBrannigan wrote: View Post
Poor Mr Hengist from Rigel IV, who's just another victim of possession, is holding the bag when Kirk needs to kill the demon.
Even from the first, I had to laugh at casting Piglet as a serial killer. "Die! Die! Everybody die!"
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Old March 13 2013, 12:56 PM   #3
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek

ZapBrannigan wrote: View Post
There are certain sci-fi plot devices that are hard to distinguish from supernatural stories. STAR TREK veered into this territory all the time.

In The Cage, the Talosians create illusions that might as well be spells they cast.

In WNM, Gary Mitchell and Elizabeth Dehner gain powers that are a lot like magic. An alternate interpretation is to say they were possessed. But since Dehner wasn't possessed by an evil force, it seems that Mitchell was just a bad guy waiting to happen.

What about Charlie X, and the somewhat similar case of Captain Garth in Whom Gods Destroy? Somebody taught them magic.

Catspaw was made expressly as a Halloween episode to air in October, and it calls the witches by name. The themes include both possession and magic.

Wolf in the Fold (SPOILER ALERT) is a demonic possession story that goes all the way into horror. Scotty is possessed and he murders two women. This being TV, once the explanation comes out, all is forgiven. It's an incredibly lucky outcome for Scotty, what with all the blood on his hands.

Or did the demon stay in Mr Hengist the whole time, and just cause Scotty to black out? That sanitizes Scotty, but Act IV clearly shows the demon's ability to jump from person to person. Why not possess Scotty to kill the women? Poor Mr Hengist from Rigel IV, who's just another victim of possession, is holding the bag when Kirk needs to kill the demon. That's an unlucky guy, and his death is not memorialized in the slightest.

The Lights of Zetar is another possession story, with a ghost angle, and it could have been a lot scarier if they'd wanted it to be. Like (and I shouldn't say this), if JJ Abrams remade it as a horror film, it could creep the crap out of people. But the TV version was pretty mild.
That's good. I like your post. There's really a fine line a times between science and sorcery. I think even the Metrons and Orgainians might fall under this although no one expresses it in the episodes. And the god, Apollo, who seems to have supernatural powers but they seem to "explain" him scientifically.

2 things I want to reply to your post. I thought the possiblity existed, unsaid of course, that wasn't Gary's conscience mind but he was possessed by an energy being/disembodied spirit. When he weakened himself on the force field his eyes went back to normal and his voice, that could have been the last time "Gary" was able to speak himself, the rest was the thing that was trapped when it's ship was destroyed by the barrier, a "spirit wall" if you want. Wasn't there some crazy story about it being constructed to protect the galaxy from some external threat?

The other thing was about Mr Hengist. I never really thought about Scotty's body being used to kill the women, only that he was in close proximity and the killer more or less handed the corpse to him when done, there by leaving Scotty covered in evidence. If it feeds on fear, the fear Scotty had about being a serial killer could have been a between meal snack. Also, when the spirit left Mr. Hengist, Bones reports that he's dead, as if Mr Hengist was an animated corpse. So maybe that's why they didn't mind "killing" him. Actually, that drug couldn't last forever, and Mr. Hengist being already dead, the vacuum of space would just mess him up if he materialized. If wide dispersal mean the transporter deliberately "spread him around" and he didn't rematerialize, then the spirit would have been freed again and it could be waiting for another chance to catch a ship, like "The Day of the Dove" , another malevolent spirit.

Sorry, I can get really wordy when I like something.
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Old March 13 2013, 01:27 PM   #4
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek

If one considers all TV-shows, who are linked by crossovers as in the same universe, Bewitched takes place in the Star Trek universe.

http://www.poobala.com/crossoverlist.html (its Group 10)

Edit to add: Star Trek X Team Knight Rider X Knight Rider X Las Vegas X Passions X Bewitched

Last edited by Sean_McCormick; March 13 2013 at 01:34 PM. Reason: added information
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Old March 13 2013, 01:54 PM   #5
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek

Marsden wrote: View Post
I thought the possiblity existed, unsaid of course, that wasn't Gary's conscience mind but he was possessed by an energy being/disembodied spirit.
Red Lectroids from Planet X by way of the Eighth Dimension!

In Texas, Oscillation Overthruster passes through mountains.
In Soviet galaxy, Barrier passes through you!
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Old March 13 2013, 02:18 PM   #6
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek

Metryq wrote: View Post
Marsden wrote: View Post
I thought the possiblity existed, unsaid of course, that wasn't Gary's conscience mind but he was possessed by an energy being/disembodied spirit.
Red Lectroids from Planet X by way of the Eighth Dimension!

In Texas, Oscillation Overthruster passes through mountains.
In Soviet galaxy, Barrier passes through you!

Your post has too many kinds of awsome to count!
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Old March 13 2013, 08:13 PM   #7
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek

Metryq wrote: View Post
ZapBrannigan wrote: View Post
Poor Mr Hengist from Rigel IV, who's just another victim of possession, is holding the bag when Kirk needs to kill the demon.
Even from the first, I had to laugh at casting Piglet as a serial killer. "Die! Die! Everybody die!"
Hard not to laugh when 8 inches taller Paul Baxley doubles him in scuffle.

Spock--"Hmm, the entity seems to be able to alter the size of his host."
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Old March 13 2013, 08:18 PM   #8
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek

And why oh WHY, didn't the remaster team fix the witches in "Catspaw" to be WHAT THEY WERE INTENDED TO BE--floating disembodied heads!!!

Did they think they were dressed in black long-sleeve velvet turtleneck sweaters, holding their arms behind their backs and bobbing up and down by accident?????
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Old March 14 2013, 12:03 AM   #9
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek

Grant wrote: View Post
And why oh WHY, didn't the remaster team fix the witches in "Catspaw" to be WHAT THEY WERE INTENDED TO BE--floating disembodied heads!!!

Did they think they were dressed in black long-sleeve velvet turtleneck sweaters, holding their arms behind their backs and bobbing up and down by accident?????

Yeah, really! If anything they made it worse by cleaning up the image and making the black clothes even more obvious!
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Old March 14 2013, 12:09 AM   #10
Grant
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek

Marsden wrote: View Post
Grant wrote: View Post
And why oh WHY, didn't the remaster team fix the witches in "Catspaw" to be WHAT THEY WERE INTENDED TO BE--floating disembodied heads!!!

Did they think they were dressed in black long-sleeve velvet turtleneck sweaters, holding their arms behind their backs and bobbing up and down by accident?????

Yeah, really! If anything they made it worse by cleaning up the image and making the black clothes even more obvious!
Well, cleaning up the image for HD only made more apparent the printing mistake from 1967 where they thought the image was too dark--"Hey, you can hardly see their bodies-- lighten it up!"

They forgot to tell them they wanted only the heads to show up in the picture. It was like when they didn't tell the lab that the 'Vina' make-up was supposed to be green and Spock was supposed to be yellowish.
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Old March 14 2013, 06:48 AM   #11
ZapBrannigan
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek

Marsden wrote: View Post
The other thing was about Mr Hengist. I never really thought about Scotty's body being used to kill the women, only that he was in close proximity and the killer more or less handed the corpse to him when done, there by leaving Scotty covered in evidence. If it feeds on fear, the fear Scotty had about being a serial killer could have been a between meal snack. Also, when the spirit left Mr. Hengist, Bones reports that he's dead, as if Mr Hengist was an animated corpse. So maybe that's why they didn't mind "killing" him.
I forgot about that: Hengist's body was dead when not inhabited by the demon. Good point.
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Old March 14 2013, 06:51 AM   #12
ZapBrannigan
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek

Grant wrote: View Post
And why oh WHY, didn't the remaster team fix the witches in "Catspaw" to be WHAT THEY WERE INTENDED TO BE--floating disembodied heads!!!

Did they think they were dressed in black long-sleeve velvet turtleneck sweaters, holding their arms behind their backs and bobbing up and down by accident?????
That's another good point.

For an actor, having to play one of the three witches in Catspaw must have been one of those "Well, you wanted to be in show business" moments, like when William Blackburn was done up as the android in Return to Tomorrow.
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Old March 15 2013, 01:54 PM   #13
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek

Just found this:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/birdofthegalaxy/8559262684
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Old March 15 2013, 05:51 PM   #14
Grant
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Re: The Witches of East-Trek


Great find, but it of course doesn't mention the fact that the 'floating in the fog' idea was ruined by the fact that they printed it too light and you could see the actors were merely bobbing about in black costumes instead of what would have been the much scarier 'floating heads'.


Thanks for that!
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