Existing sci-fi stories adapted into Star Trek?

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by CaptainMurdock, Mar 17, 2013.

  1. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Umm, here is what I said in post #7:
    So you're just repeating what's already been stated.


    It does bear a broad conceptual similarity to Robert L. Forward's novels Dragon's Egg and Starquake, about a society of life forms on a neutron star who live millions of times faster than we do (because the particles of atomic-density matter are so much closer together so interactions happen far faster). But it isn't directly based on those books by any means, otherwise there'd be a story credit for Forward, and there isn't. I find a lot of online speculation that the books may have inspired the episode, but it's only speculation based on their similarity. And really, they aren't similar at all beyond the "aliens who live really fast" premise.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2013
  2. Sir Rhosis

    Sir Rhosis Commodore Commodore

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    ^^^You are correct; my apologies.

    SR
     
  3. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Forbidden Planet was not "almost a Star Trek episode."

    Star Trek was almost a Forbidden Planet sequel. :cool:
     
  4. xortex

    xortex Commodore

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    Star Wars was an episode of Trek.
     
  5. RAMA

    RAMA Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Robert Bloch's Redjac story was derived from his other work with the Jack the Ripper...including A Toy for Juliette in "Dangerous Visions", which Harlan Ellsion wrote a sequel to. It was Bloch's idea of an immortal RIpper that carried over into Wolf in the FOld.

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Night-Ripper-Robert-Bloch/dp/0812500709

    Stephen Baxter wrote a story outline for Voyager that was never used:

    http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=149797

    As I point out in the link, there was reverse pollination there too, where Voyager actually inspired his collaboration with Arthur C Clarke.

    I would also like to point out ST's first tale about the origin of the Transporter was written by David Brin in graphic novel form!! Forgiveness:

    http://www.amazon.com/s?ie=UTF8&page=1&rh=n%3A4366%2Cp_lbr_books_series_browse-bin%3AStar%20Trek%2Cp_lbr_one_browse-bin%3ADavid%20Brin

    RAMA
     
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    ^Actually Forgiveness wasn't the first tale about the origin of the transporter. Marvel Comics did an issue on that subject in 1980 (a story which was actually a bit similar to ENT's "Daedalus," in that it involved "ghosts" that were incorporeal victims of early, failed transporter experiments). Also preceding Forgiveness by a couple of years was "Dead Man's Hand" in the Pocket anthology The Lives of Dax, which had Tobin Dax and Sarek's father Skon perfecting human transportation during the Romulan War -- which ENT has since contradicted, of course.
     
  7. tighr

    tighr Commodore Commodore

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    Deep Space 9's episode Whispers is remarkably similar to Philip K Dick's story "Imposter". There are many plot elements that directly mirror what happens in Dick's story in a way that makes it hard to believe the writer wasn't influenced.
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    ^Like I said, different writers independently coming up with the same idea only seems unlikely to people who aren't writers -- or producers or editors taking submissions from writers. Not only is it not improbable or suspicious, it is downright routine. It happens all the time. There are only so many ways to put a story together coherently, and we're all part of the same culture with the same ideas influencing us.

    There are over 700 distinct Star Trek episodes and movies at this point. You can probably pick any given one of them and find an existing story that it closely parallels.
     
  9. Relayer1

    Relayer1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    You are, of course, correct !
     
  10. Metryq

    Metryq Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I'll have to look up these stories—the "ghosts" aspect sounds a bit like Robert Sheckley's IMMORTALITY, INC.
     
  11. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    That's true enough, but I would add something. By David Gerrold's own account, he read every sci-fi novel he could get his hands on as a teenager, checking out the weekly limit on his library card.

    I think he read THE ROLLING STONES, forgot it, and then his subconscious regurgitated it when it was time to think up a story. Same deal with Gene Coon writing "Arena" without realizing that he had read the Brown story.
     
  12. RAMA

    RAMA Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Ack, I shouldn't have said "first" origin tale, just "an origin tale", though I didn't know of the two others. I should have just assumed it.

    RAMA
     
  13. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Everything we create is influenced by our past experience to some degree. That's just how it works -- fiction is a conversation between past and present writers, as the tellers of new stories react to, reinterpret, homage, or deconstruct ideas that they've read in other author's works. There is simply no such thing as a work of fiction that isn't influenced by earlier works of fiction. It's just a question of whether the influence of a single specific work is so dominant that you're essentially telling a version of the same story. Heinlein himself didn't think that "Tribbles" bore enough common elements to his work to count as an imitation or adaptation, and who'd know better than he?
     
  14. xortex

    xortex Commodore

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    Happens in music all the time usually ending in law suites. 'Whispers' also bore an uncanny resemblance to a twilight episode too. I don't think all derivative rights should include homages though. Just because someone forgot that they stole it doesn't excuse them nor does them reexpressing in some other way using the same idea slightly differently to accomadate their own story. That to me is just stealing, especially if the reexpression is not as good as the original. Of course the same story can be reexpressed in different ways and using different aspects of the concept but there is such a thing as intellectual property to stories though they say you can't steal stories, only their specific expression and of course no two writers are gonna approach the material the exact same way and of course proper names are up for grabs and can't be protected. The story of a terrorist using future technology was and has been a story I've had for a long time. Suing JJ would be like complaining to a black guy of racism and being white.
     

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