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Old January 1 2002, 02:50 AM   #1
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'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

The History Channel's newest Star Trek retrospective, Star Trek: Beyond the Final Frontier, did not receive particularly enthusiastic reviews despite the presence of Leonard Nimoy (Spock) as host. Critic objected to the emphasis on the Christie's auction that raised money for Paramount, claiming that the special arrived too late for the franchise's 40th anniversary and "goes nowhere."

    [*]Diane Werts of Newsday described the special and auction as "boldly exploiting the 'Trek' phenomenon", using familiar episode clips and trite sound bytes by Star Trek actors who have already discussed the franchise on numerous other specials. "Trekkers have seen it all dozens of times before. So maybe 'Beyond' is meant for newbies," she stated. However, much of the program "is on something only devotees could love: staff preparation for the October sale of 1,000 'Trek' props." Both the studio's exploitation of fan affluence and the boring details of the special left her unimpressed.
    [*]"When you can’t get camera whore William Shatner to show up for your special, that’s a bad sign. Star Trek” fans, beware," wrote The Boston Herald's Mark A. Perigard. "The fans are depicted as either having more expendable currency than Ferengi royalty or acting as certifiable loons...if Paramount was so willing to part with costumes, props and ship models, some held for four decades, what does that say about the future of the franchise?"
    [*]Syndicated in The Morning Call from The Washington Post, Judith S. Gillies was more interested in the comments of Avery Brooks, Kate Mulgrew and Patrick Stewart, though she echoed an organizer's regret that Shatner and Scott Bakula, who did not take part. She echoed as well the idea that Star Trek offered a hopeful future during a turbulent time.
    [*]Frazier MOore at the Courier Press observed that the program analyzed the overriding mythology of Star Trek in addition to its celebrity appearances. "The program goes behind the scenes with many of the people (writers, model makers, set designers, technicians and directors) responsible for developing the 'Star Trek' universe."
    [*]Oregon Live gave the special a more favorable review, as Ted Mahar observed that the focus on preparations for the Christie's auction "turns out to be a useful way for the documentary to reveal the time, energy and devotion that went into the films and series." He added that the influence of Star Trek on science fiction overall "is incalculable, but actress Marina Sirtis (Counselor Deanna Troi) mentions the obvious -- George Lucas and Steven Spielberg were patently 'Star Trek' buffs."[/list]Star Trek: Beyond the Final Frontier, which debuted on Monday night, reruns several times on The History Channel. The next airing is Saturday, February 24th at 8 p.m.
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Old February 23 2007, 01:40 PM   #2
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Re: 'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

I thought it was a rather nice advertisement for the Christie's auction. Too late to help it though (not that the auction needed help). Did Christie's pay for this?
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Old February 23 2007, 04:25 PM   #3
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Re: 'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

Critics protest that the History Channel special [...] portrays Trek fans as acquisitive and obsessive.
You mean we aren't?
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Old February 23 2007, 07:09 PM   #4
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Re: 'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

I TiVoed it and then watched maybe a half hour. It was absolutely mind-numbingly boring.
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Old February 23 2007, 11:37 PM   #5
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Re: 'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

I didn't see it.
so how many times did they go on about how star trek predicted cell phones and floppy disks?

oh and did they get on about how trek helped the civil rights movement and made commentary about the social situation of the 60's and offers a promising hope for the future?



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Old February 24 2007, 05:36 AM   #6
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Re: 'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

This was nothing less than the Christie's Auction Informercial. The first 20 minutes were great and then someone turned up the suck button. It's kinda sad to see all those iconic things auctioned off.
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Old February 24 2007, 07:50 AM   #7
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Re: 'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

I agree that it was pretty boring. It felt like a commercial for the auction that was aired too late. But it was fun to see inside the warehouses, and to see Denise and Mike Okuda's affection for the props as they organized the auction.
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Old February 24 2007, 08:43 AM   #8
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Re: 'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

^^That was cool.. Unfortunately it descended deeper into the Abyss of Suck not long after that.
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Old February 24 2007, 12:29 PM   #9
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Re: 'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

The looks inside the warehouses were pretty cool I think. Other than that it was pretty lame. The worst part was the cast interviews. Did they really need to waste more of these peoples' time so they can get carbon copies of the sound bites they've been throwing out for years?
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Old February 24 2007, 07:49 PM   #10
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Re: 'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

I didn't see the program, but I was told about it by a friend at work. Sounded...less than exciting.

But he did discuss the nifty stuff they jettisoned at the auction. It's a pity they couldn't have donated some props to the better-quality fan productions. That would have been admirable.
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Old February 24 2007, 10:03 PM   #11
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Re: 'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

But it was fun to see inside the warehouses, and to see Denise and Mike Okuda's affection for the props as they organized the auction.

I saw that part and the part where the actors complain about the uncomfortable costumes. But I lost interest. I guess I didn't miss much.

I hope the Smithsonian has all the good Trek stuff. Like Kirk's chair.
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Old February 26 2007, 10:26 PM   #12
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Re: 'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

I watched it and I can't say I was that impressed. Yes, it was neat seeing all models and props the Okudas gathered for the auction, but that was pretty much all it was about.

But to give the program one small bit of credit; seeing all the hero models of my youth's favorite Trek ships did make me a bit nostalgic for the lost art of modeling. CGI is cool for a thousand different reasons, but an actual model speaks to you in a way a CGI mesh doesn't.
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Old February 26 2007, 10:57 PM   #13
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Re: 'Beyond the Final Frontier' Doesn't Reach New Vistas

I finally watched this show. The Christie's part which some people seem to be complaining about (the "big commercial", which it obviously wasn't or it would have come out before the auction) was the most interesting for me, because it was new material.

I could have done with fewer talking heads talking about Roddenberry's vision and such, which we've seen all too often in the past.

I would have preferred a two-hour documentary chronicling the Okuda's work in the warehouse (who wouldn't have loved to be working with them on that task?), culminating with the auction and profiling some of the buyers of the big-ticket items.
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