Yeoman Rand & Production order

Discussion in 'Star Trek - Original Series' started by EnriqueH, Jul 18, 2014.

  1. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Actually most of the female characters on TOS were shot with soft focus. TOS's director of photography, Jerry Finnerman, was trained by the generation of cinematographers that had honed their craft in the age of black-and-white movies and film noir, which is why TOS makes such heavy use of patterns of light and shadow. There were certain rules he was trained to use, rules I remember him enumerating in a Cinefantastique interview I read once. They included: Always shoot women in soft focus; always front-light women to smooth their features and cross-light men to sharpen theirs; and never angle a camera up a woman's nostrils because it's unflattering. Basically, make every woman as glamorous and ethereal-looking as possible, while making the men look tougher and harder-edged. Finnerman used the same techniques with Bruce Willis and Cybill Shepherd on Moonlighting many years later.
     
  2. urbandefault

    urbandefault Commodore Commodore

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    I guess I didn't notice it as much with the other female characters, but it makes sense.

    But I definitely noticed it with Cybill Shepherd.

    Funny, the first time I saw the real difference between HD and SD tv was at Sears, back when plasma TVs were about $10K. Boston Legal was on, and there was a close-up of Candice Bergen. Holy moly, they could have used Finnerman on that one. :wtf:
     
  3. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Commodore Commodore

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    "Soft focus" is a figure of speech in this case. What Finnerman actually did was put a diffusion filter over the lens to give women that slight blur that drives men wild:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diffusion_filter

    Along with "soft focus," other popular myths are that the scene is shot through a sheet of gauze, or that Vaseline is smeared on the lens. Not so.
     
  4. Marsden

    Marsden Commodore Commodore

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    Only LandSpeeders, right?


    I'm sorry if this is too off topic, but regarding production order, what if Spock's Brain happened before The Menagerie?

    Would Spock have taken Pike to be the new controller? He'd be doing things, his brain is still good. Oh, well.


    I don't know why I think of such things.
     
  5. erastus25

    erastus25 Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah...it's crazy to think about stuff like that. Especially when you throw in how altered an individual's memories can be from reality as the years pass. And yet, I see people on this board claiming they remember very specific conversations, word for word, from 30 or even 40 years ago, and get indignant if you point out the recollection may be slightly faulty. hhhmmm...
     
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I thought that effect was done by putting reflective sheeting around the wheels of the landspeeder. Although I guess there was that one shot where the underside was blurred or animated out in post-production.


    One of the first things students of history are taught is never to trust any single source, even a firsthand account, as entirely trustworthy. Memories are fallible and every observer is biased; even a photographic record of an event can be biased and distorted by what the photographer chooses to focus on or to exclude from the frame. So all we can do is document what people have said about an event, consider it in light of their biases, and seek multiple sources to get different perspectives on an event and try to put it in context. It's an accepted reality that we can't ever have perfect objective knowledge of what really happened. After all, "history" means "story." History is not a record of the past, it's a record of what people in the past said or wrote about their experiences.
     
  7. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk The Real Me Premium Member

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    They chose Spock's brain out of the 400 on the Enterprise for a reason.
     
  8. LMFAOschwarz

    LMFAOschwarz Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    If I may pose a question, is there a reason I never seem to read here about anyone making it a point to watch the other Trek series in production order? It's just pure curiosity...
     
  9. EnriqueH

    EnriqueH Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Forgive my ignorance, but...I thought they were listed in production order?

    I went through a TNG viewing marathon some years back and watched them in the order of the DVD discs.

    Was that a mistake?
     
  10. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    In the case of TOS, the difference between production order and airing order is much greater than in the later shows. The episodes were made to be aired in any order, so there was little continuity among them. And in the later shows, if there was a difference, it was usually for scheduling reasons and there was a clear intent for the stories to take place in broadcast order (for instance, "Symbiosis" being filmed after "Skin of Evil" or "Unification Part I" being filmed after "Unification Part II"). There are a few instances where I prefer production order for the later shows, but usually -- in those rare cases where they differ at all -- airdate order is clearly preferable.
     
  11. EnriqueH

    EnriqueH Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    So, to clarify: it's better to watch TNG, DS9, etc. in the order presented in the DVDs?
     
  12. LMFAOschwarz

    LMFAOschwarz Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    That's an interesting distinction, Christopher. Thanks! :)

    I figured it might be something like that, but I wasn't knowledgeable enough about the production of the later series to be sure.
     
  13. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I think so, yes, as a rule.
     
  14. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

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    The memo terminating Whitney was sent on September 8, 1966, the same day "The Man Trap" marked Star Trek's debut, so this isn't far from the truth.
     
  15. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Also, because the show was going to be seen on a lot of black and white sets, so shooting with gobos/cookies and dramatic lighting helped make the show look good in b&w as well as color.
     
  16. Lance

    Lance Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    There are occasions near the start of the second season of VOY where the continuity matches up a little better in production order (I mean, this is VOY, so there isn't a *lot* of continuity, but what there is matches better in production order). But as you say, by and large in the later shows they were more careful to make sure the episodes could air in any order at all.
     
  17. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    No, that's the opposite of what I said. It was the original series that was designed to air in any order, because that was the standard for 1960s-70s television. By the later shows, there was more continuity and it was standard for shows to be aired in production order unless there was a specific scheduling reason to make an exception.
     
  18. Push The Button

    Push The Button Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    "History is bunk."
    - Henry Ford
     
  19. Hober Mallow

    Hober Mallow Commodore Commodore

    After the first season, the episodes are mostly aired in production order anyway. But if you're really insistent on production order, then you'll, as Christopher mentioned, see Yar magically come back to life following "Skin of Evil," and "Unification II" before "Unification I." IIRC, the old videotape releases were in production order with the exception, I would think, of "Unification."

    Incidentally -- and you may know this already -- since "Symbiosis" was Denise Crosby's real last episode, the last time we see her, behind Picard's back, she's waving goodbye to the camera.
     
  20. Green Shirt

    Green Shirt Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Watching Trek is never a mistake. :techman: