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Old August 19 2009, 12:13 AM   #211
TIN_MAN
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

Captain Robert April wrote: View Post
Another aspect of this project is to not alter anything, interior or exterior, unless absolutely necessary (like the various tweaks that have been done to come up with a version of the shuttlecraft that reasonably fits both the oversized interior and undersized exterior).
That's all I been sayin all along, Bro!

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Old August 19 2009, 01:56 AM   #212
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

"Creator's intent" only gets you so far when you're dealing with more than one "creator", like we have here with the Enterprise. Jefferies had his input, the various writers had their contributions, the story editors put in their two cents' worth, and we're stuck with sorting out the end product. So, there's a lot of picking and choosing, and sometimes you face the likelihood that nobody's right and you pull something out of a hat that makes more sense than anything anyone else has on the table.

If I recall, the initial debate in these threads over the bridge orientation and placement took the better part of a year, or at least felt like it, with the final solution giving us, essentially, a bridge module, which was fully visible during the pilots, but was lowered about halfway inside the teardrop structure, with the only real change inside being the elimination of that circular briefing room directly below. This accommodates a forward facing bridge, maintains it's position as the highest occupied part of the ship (it's still slightly higher than Deck 2), and also addresses a long time pet peeve of some fans, the vulnerability of the bridge.

As for that nub to which you attach so much significance, consider the dome in the pilots. The difference between the top of the nub and the top of the dome is the same as it is on the production version, yet that zoom-in we see in "The Cage" makes it pretty clear that the turbolift opens over on the port side, and there's nothing for a turbolift car to open up to that high up anyway, so why would a turbolift tube be reaching up that damn high?

How about if it's not a turbolift tube in the first place, and instead, something equally as vital and needing a position high up on the hull and an unobstructed view of space? Like the subspace radio transceiver array?

It's not unlike the approach I took with Engineering, and concluding that the big glowing tube assembly wasn't a set of conduits to the nacelles nor was it the guts of the impulse engines, but rather a power distribution manifold that fed power to both systems from the matter/antimatter reactor. This took care of the various script references that seemed to go both ways as to where Engineering was, up in the saucer or down in the secondary hull, as well as allowing me to put Engineering anywhere I wanted.
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Old August 19 2009, 03:43 AM   #213
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

Not taking sides in this debate but the Cage shot is just a primitive matte that doesn't prove anything. The turbolift is not lined up but the bridge also isn't facing forward.



As for the purpose of the nub, one should remember that when MJ was redesigning the Ent for Phase II, he added a second nub for a bridge with two turbolifts. Not proof but it does give insight into what MJ was thinking..


(edit: changed the adjective on matte from "bad" to "primitive": a product of the limits of the technology and not the efforts of the artists involved.)
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Old August 19 2009, 05:11 AM   #214
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

Captain Robert April wrote: View Post
"Creator's intent" only gets you so far when you're dealing with more than one "creator", like we have here with the Enterprise. Jefferies had his input, the various writers had their contributions, the story editors put in their two cents' worth, and we're stuck with sorting out the end product. So, there's a lot of picking and choosing, and sometimes you face the likelihood that nobody's right and you pull something out of a hat that makes more sense than anything anyone else has on the table.
Agreed.

If I recall, the initial debate in these threads over the bridge orientation and placement took the better part of a year, or at least felt like it, with the final solution giving us, essentially, a bridge module, which was fully visible during the pilots, but was lowered about halfway inside the teardrop structure, with the only real change inside being the elimination of that circular briefing room directly below. This accommodates a forward facing bridge, maintains it's position as the highest occupied part of the ship (it's still slightly higher than Deck 2), and also addresses a long time pet peeve of some fans, the vulnerability of the bridge.
Agreed. (except for the Forward facing bridge after the pilots)

As for that nub to which you attach so much significance, consider the dome in the pilots. The difference between the top of the nub and the top of the dome is the same as it is on the production version, yet that zoom-in we see in "The Cage" makes it pretty clear that the turbolift opens over on the port side, and there's nothing for a turbolift car to open up to that high up anyway, so why would a turbolift tube be reaching up that damn high?
BEEEEEP! And we were doing so well.

If I understand your meaning, your complaint is that at that time the nub was higher than a T/L car? OK, easy enough, maybe the shaft reaches up to allow access to the "deck 0" sensor dome? Or, and I think you'll like this one, Maybe the top few feet or so, house other additional equipment, like the subspace radio transceiver array on which you attach so much significance? As for the T/L opening on to the port side, I've already said I could accept that as long as another on the starboard side opened to the service corridor.

It's not unlike the approach I took with Engineering, and concluding that the big glowing tube assembly wasn't a set of conduits to the nacelles nor was it the guts of the impulse engines, but rather a power distribution manifold that fed power to both systems from the matter/antimatter reactor. This took care of the various script references that seemed to go both ways as to where Engineering was, up in the saucer or down in the secondary hull, as well as allowing me to put Engineering anywhere I wanted.
Agreed, I always thought that "the big glowing tube assembly" thingy looked like a power distribution manifold, so we reach!

WOO-HOO! IDIC RULES!!!!
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Old August 19 2009, 06:51 AM   #215
Captain Robert April
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

Actually, I've cooked up several different bridge configurations that one might encounter on any given starship, depending on mission profile, captain's preference, etc. I'll see if I can dig up the pics, but the quick rundown consists of:

  1. the turbolift where we've always seen it
  2. directly behind the captain's chair
  3. the doors and the library computer station swapped
  4. two sets of doors (ala the TMP bridge)
  5. or the real whopper, three sets of doors along the back side.

Not sure why anyone would want that last setup, but it's an option.

The one consistent feature in all of them is the turboshaft forming an arc along the backside, and the maintenance corridor completing the circle around the bridge.

Access to the maintenance corridor would only require rotating the turbolift cab ninety degrees to either direction at either end of the turboshaft arc.

As for the effect in "The Cage", the idea is pretty clear, and in the remastered version, everything lines up just fine. Except for that nub, of course.
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Old August 19 2009, 04:58 PM   #216
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

^^ Yeah, I know, there's a site like your talking about, some cool ideas there, but others stretch credibility a bit.

As far as "Access to the maintenance corridor would only require rotating the turbolift cab ninety degrees to either direction at either end of the turboshaft arc." I already considered this, and it's not necessarily a deal breaker, it would still be an option even with another T/L on the starboard (or port?) side for M/C access. The main advantage of having another cab "dedicated" for M/C access, other than it provides some rationale for why the shaft would/should move laterally upon reaching the bridge in the first place, is that it would also provide the much needed spare T/L for such a strategic location!

As for "The Cage" shot, the problem is, it really only proves what we knew all along and was never in dispute, that is, that the bridge was intended to face forward. But since it's an optical insert, and therefore bears no real physical relationship between the inside and outside of the ship, (either real or imaginary) it doesn't prove anything about how this miss-match might fit together and still work somehow?

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Old August 19 2009, 05:51 PM   #217
Captain Robert April
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

It does establish, though, that the bridge faces forward, and given the amount of thought and setting up that shot required, even to get it as close as they did originally, means they gave it some amount of thought as to where the damn thing is and which way it faces.

Frankly, I think Matt Jefferies would be laughing his ass off over how we're quibbling over this one aspect, and immensely pleased that we're using our imaginations over how this all fits together. I'm not sure how he'd think about the notion that he'd ever face the bridge of a ship anywhere but straight ahead, though.

I'd love to get some feedback from his brothers. His brother John should have some extra insight on this matter, since he also worked on TOS.
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Old August 19 2009, 07:37 PM   #218
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

Captain Robert April wrote: View Post
It does establish, though, that the bridge faces forward, and given the amount of thought and setting up that shot required, even to get it as close as they did originally, means they gave it some amount of thought as to where the damn thing is and which way it faces.

Frankly, I think Matt Jefferies would be laughing his ass off over how we're quibbling over this one aspect, and immensely pleased that we're using our imaginations over how this all fits together. I'm not sure how he'd think about the notion that he'd ever face the bridge of a ship anywhere but straight ahead, though.

I'd love to get some feedback from his brothers. His brother John should have some extra insight on this matter, since he also worked on TOS.
Laughing AT us, no doubt.
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Old August 19 2009, 07:51 PM   #219
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

BK613 wrote: View Post
(edit: changed the adjective on matte from "bad" to "primitive": a product of the limits of the technology and not the efforts of the artists involved.)
I wouldn't worry so much about insulting the efforts of the mattework. They could have done a much better job (see [b]2001[b], made only four years latter, and that's just the first example I can think of ATM,) it was simply a matter of cost (which they blew on practical sets and models beforehand).
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Old August 19 2009, 08:21 PM   #220
Captain Robert April
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

I doubt Jeff Hunter came cheap, either.
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Old August 19 2009, 08:31 PM   #221
Captain Robert April
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

CTM wrote: View Post
Captain Robert April wrote: View Post
It does establish, though, that the bridge faces forward, and given the amount of thought and setting up that shot required, even to get it as close as they did originally, means they gave it some amount of thought as to where the damn thing is and which way it faces.

Frankly, I think Matt Jefferies would be laughing his ass off over how we're quibbling over this one aspect, and immensely pleased that we're using our imaginations over how this all fits together. I'm not sure how he'd think about the notion that he'd ever face the bridge of a ship anywhere but straight ahead, though.

I'd love to get some feedback from his brothers. His brother John should have some extra insight on this matter, since he also worked on TOS.
Laughing AT us, no doubt.
Possibly. The fact is, he appreciated imagination far more than relative skill. In the tribute video on the 2-disc version of Generations (the only reason I got the thing), Jefferies talks about the one time he got roped into being a judge at a convention model contest and how he bypassed a whole bushel of professional-quality models, which were really only rearrangements of the familiar components of saucer, nacelles, etc, in favor of one by some kid whose model making skills were still pretty rough, but at least showed a degree of imagination in his designwork. Suffice it to say that the pro-level modelers were ready to lynch ol' Matt and he swore to never get into that situation again.

The one regret I've had throughout this project is that I didn't make a move to contact Mr. Jefferies earlier than when the idea came up(actually, it was during a relatively early stage and Aridas Sofia and I were going back and forth on some issue, I forget who suggested getting ahold of MJ first, but I had just started the process of trying to track him down, I think I got as far as finding his address, when the news broke that he'd passed). I'd still be tickled if one of his brothers could throw in their two cents' worth.
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Old August 20 2009, 10:08 AM   #222
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

USS Mariner wrote: View Post
BK613 wrote: View Post
(edit: changed the adjective on matte from "bad" to "primitive": a product of the limits of the technology and not the efforts of the artists involved.)
I wouldn't worry so much about insulting the efforts of the mattework. They could have done a much better job (see [b]2001[b], made only four years latter, and that's just the first example I can think of ATM,) it was simply a matter of cost (which they blew on practical sets and models beforehand).
Well what they were attempting was difficult at the time, trying to synchronize the movements of two cameras (Star Wars and motion control was still a decade or so away.) If you look at 2001, you will find that in a lot of the FX shots involving mattes, one or both of the cameras are "locked down."

Could the shot have been better? Perhaps.

Does it stand as absolute proof that the bridge is oriented one way or the other?
No.

The center of the live-action bridge and the center of the model's dome are not even lined up. The different camera lenses and shooting angles create separate vanishing points and horizon lines for the internal and external shots. IOW, the sequence is full of "errors" that disqualifies it as proof of anything related to the current discussion.

As for whether the shot was meant to establish the fact that the bridge was facing directly forward, well, you tend to see what you want to see. My reading of those tealeaves is that there was never an intent to be so precise; that the shot was purposed to show, to the audience, the size and relationship of the ship and its crew; and that the folks making the pilot were probably happy the shot worked as well as it did.
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Old August 20 2009, 07:17 PM   #223
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

^^ Agreed, well said.
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Old August 21 2009, 04:05 AM   #224
Captain Robert April
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

Parsing things to that degree only to prove that they didn't nail anything down? Good grief, you can tell that just from the frelling scripts!
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Old August 21 2009, 05:44 PM   #225
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Re: Deck Plans VI: The Undiscovered Bowling Alley

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Parsing things to that degree only to prove that they didn't nail anything down? Good grief, you can tell that just from the frelling scripts!
Now now, mon capitan. You've been known to parse things to that degree, and then some, when it suits your purpose. Besides, when one considers how often in ST (TOS in particular) that the FX doesn't match creator intent and/or online dialogue, it's fair to take the bridge matte shot with a big grain of salt.

One of the best examples of what I'm talking about is in "Day of the Dove" when the dialogue (per "creator intent") clearly favors a TMOST (and later FJ) arangement of decks and engine room location, but then the FX at the end of the ep contradicts this by showing the entity leaving the engine room through the secondary hull! Even as late as "In a Mirror Darkly" the creative team carefully considered where they wanted the aft phasers/photon torpedos to fire from, and told the FX crew, only to be surprised that it ended up being some other location (the "homing beacon") instead!

You'll no doubt say that we're nevertheless still stuck with the final product as we saw it, but all the above just underscores my point as to why putting too much emphasis on "the way we saw it", especially as ultimate "proof" of creator intent -and the resultant unwillingness to compromise that follows- only locks us into a conceptual box that does more to stifle creativity than anything else.

Now, I've no doubt that Ideally the bridge should face forwards, and certainly MJ felt the same way, but as you say, many people were involved in the final product, and things got switched around, so the question is; shouldn't we keep all options on the table before making up our minds, then pick the one that does the least amount of further damage, even if it's not a perfect solution (which isn't going to happen anyway)?
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