Peeling "The Apple"

Discussion in 'Star Trek - Original Series' started by ZapBrannigan, Nov 5, 2013.

  1. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Commodore Commodore

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    I just posted my thoughts about "The Apple" on another bboard and now here they are as well.

    I like it when Kirk says "Jettison the nacelles and crack out of there with the main section if you have to."

    He was definitely referring to saucer separation. And it made sense in that situation. All Scotty had working was the impulse engines against Vaal's tractor beam. The impulse engines are on the saucer, so dumping the powerless drive section would lighten the mass of the ship with no loss of thrust, making it vastly easier to break away.

    Overall I think "The Apple" was a relatively crummy episode, and it has not aged well, making matters worse.

    - Kirk and McCoy don't have the slightest thought of resuscitating the first redshirt when he gets hit with poison plant darts, or of beaming up to see what can be done for him in Sickbay.

    - Kirk greets a native who's trying to hide by sneaking up and punching him in the mouth without warning.

    - Chekov says to Martha, "If we had to stay here, would it be so wery bad?" Well, let's see: If we have to stay here, that means 421 of our shipmates are going to suffer a fiery death in the upper atmosphere. No biggie.

    - After destroying the natives' whole economy, social order, and way of life (forced to or not), Kirk is incredibly cavalier and insouciant about it. "Yeah, you've just lost your eternal youth so you'll start aging now, and your community is too small to survive as a viable gene pool, and you have no idea how much hard labor is ahead of you as subsistance farmers, but you're going to like it soon." This was Star Trek's version of "We had to pass the plan so you could see what's in it."
     
  2. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Admiral Admiral

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    But, Celeste Yarnall. Therefore, your argument is invalid. ;)

    I kid, I kid (kinda). Yeah, the episode blows.

    In all seriousness, it could have been so much better and still have kept the overall premise, I think.

    The epilogue scene comparing Spock to Satan is really embarrassing too, I thought. Today, it plays as downright racist. Well, it does to me, anyway.
     
  3. teacake

    teacake Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Kirk doesn't concern himself with paperwork and relief efforts.. someone on the ship would be assembling Starter Kits for Civilization and beaming them down to the settlement.
     
  4. Metryq

    Metryq Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    (Zap's inner Spock is showing again. How many people who are not professional writers do you know who sling around words like "insouciant"? I thought that meant uncooked Japanese fish before I looked it up.)

    Prime Directive? What Prime Directive?

    And what's a Celeste Yarnall? I had to look that up, too, and found The top Star Trek:TOS babes that are rarely mentioned.
     
  5. teacake

    teacake Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    That so called "uber Trekkie" who made the list obviously doesn't exist on forums. Including Helen Noel as "rarely mentioned" ?!

    I also object to Mariette Harley being in that list. I've been mentioning her since I first laid eyes on her LOLOL
     
  6. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

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    If anything, Spock himself is the one who brings up the whole comparison.

     
  7. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Admiral Admiral

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    It is Spock who first suggested that he's the only one on the ship who looks like Satan? I don't think so.
     
  8. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Commodore Commodore

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    I think Spock was big enough to take some good-natured kidding.

    The real problem with the ending was the television-related need for it to be upbeat after four men just died. If Kirk is a realistic character, his happy-talk with Spock and McCoy is a total facade here. He has to explain his losses to the Admiralty and probably write letters to four next of kin.

    "Obsession" is another offender in this regard. "City on the Edge," "Catspaw," and "A Private Little War" got it right.
     
  9. Push The Button

    Push The Button Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    That Vaal was fueled only by the leaves, orange peels and other organic matter that the natives were feeding it never made any sense, given that it was regulating the climate of the entire planet and trying to pull the Enterprise out of orbit with a tractor beam.
     
  10. Mytran

    Mytran Commodore Commodore

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    Spock really was casting Kirk in role of Satan, as the one who gave the "apple" to the natives. In this instance, Spock got as good as he gave. And it's all done fairly subtly by TOS standards (the bickering between McCoy and Spock in later season 2 got really bad for a while).
     
  11. jpv2000

    jpv2000 Captain Captain

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    It wasn't leaves and fruit, it was the energy rocks that would blow up.
     
  12. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

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    I have the feeling the only reason Vaal didn't receive a human sacrifice was because the People of Vaal were denied the freedom to mate.
     
  13. plynch

    plynch Commodore Commodore

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    Doomsday and Changeling both end with a Gene Coon chuckler at the end, too. It is he -- according to what I've read here -- who lightened the tone and made the crew less military and more familial.

    This is an episode people who call Trek "camp" can point to, I think.
     
  14. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Commodore Commodore

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    The fact Kirk was presented as anguished over crew deaths at all was enough; he did not need to carry the weight of Starfleet burial / torpedo tubes on his shoulders by the close of every episode where a death occured. That's the problem with TV from the 90s-forward: too many walk around in a depressed funk--in nearly every episode--like one in serious need of the couch or the edge of a rooftop.
     
  15. scotpens

    scotpens Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Her name may not be familiar to some of the younger Trekkers, but she was a breathtaking beauty back in her acting days. And, unlike the episode, I think she's aged rather well.

    ^^ This. There were other episodes where Spock took some affectionate ribbing about his devilish appearance, e.g. "Bread and Circuses." Nothing racist about it. But by the middle of the second season, the forced jokey ending was already becoming a Trek cliché.

    And what's with the bit where Kirk says to Scotty: "If you can't get those warp engines working, you're fired"? Fired? They're the C.O. and chief engineer of a military starship, not a civilian employee and his boss. I suppose that line could have been meant as a joke, but it just comes across as sloppy writing.
     
  16. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

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    But . . . but they can learn about sex now. That makes up for any other inconveniences, right? (Kirk certainly seems to think so!)

    And dare I mentioned that I have an autographed photo of Celeste Yarnall on my wall, only a few feet away from where I'm typing this? (Celeste tried to talk me into writing her character into the novels once . . ..)
     
  17. Corylea

    Corylea Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I wouldn't mind a GOOD jokey ending, but they were often so very labored. :rolleyes:


    It's meant to be a jokey way of saying, "I'll be very unhappy with you," which makes it a way of showing Kirk's persona as a man who bonds with his crew and who doesn't just snap out orders. This means that it's not sloppy writing; it's character-based writing.
     
  18. Grant

    Grant Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    You are 100% right---the episodes where Kirk reminds us that he is still feeling the loss are far superior to the lousy joke enders like Galileo Seven and Friday's Child.

    Also on the positive ledger side WNMHGB and Balance of Terror.
     
  19. MikeH92467

    MikeH92467 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It wasn't really jokey, it was graveyard humor. Kirk knew Scotty was doing everything humanly possible and Scotty knew they were screwed if they didn't get the engines, but Kirk is the boss and he has to do something to inspire his crew, so it was a half-hearted joke instead of wasting their time with a tirade. I thought it was a bit of excellent writing, amid some, well, not so great writing.
     
  20. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

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    Then she'd sue you for a percentage for giving you the idea if it was a best-seller. Gotta watch out for actors and their attorneys. :shifty: