"Forbidden Planet" as TOS prequel?

Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by TOS Purist, Aug 22, 2009.

  1. Kelso

    Kelso Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Norma Jeane Baker legally changed her name to Marilyn Monroe in 1956.
     
  2. Captain Robert April

    Captain Robert April Vice Admiral Admiral

    Ya think maybe continuity can be overrated at times?
     
  3. Captain Robert April

    Captain Robert April Vice Admiral Admiral

    A common practice back in the day. Note how most of John Wayne's kids have the surname "Wayne" and not "Morrison".
     
  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Which didn't make the persona of Marilyn Monroe any less of a fiction. The name change was just one more step in the ongoing transformation of Ms. Baker into a manufactured fantasy image. They changed her name, her hair color, her face (I think she was the first major actress to have her look substantially altered by plastic surgery), her personality, everything. And she was far from the only celebrity whose public image was (or is) essentially a fictional construct. Arthur Adolph Marx was quite well-spoken, but he always appeared in public as the mute Harpo. Rock Hudson put forth the image of a heterosexual romantic idol. Clayton Moore refused to do any onscreen appearance or publicity event without the Lone Ranger mask or an equivalent. Gilbert Gottfried, in his early Saturday Night Live appearances, often used a normal speaking voice, but once his grating-voiced loudmouth character caught on, it became his trademark to the extent that he always did it from then on. Lots of celebrities are playing fictionalized versions of themselves whenever they're in public, because it's what their audience expects.

    So treating Robby the Robot as a celebrity, an "actor" who existed in the real world and played versions of himself in various unrelated works of fiction, isn't that unreasonable. Maybe he was just a suit that somebody put on before going on camera, but you can say the same about a lot of celebrity personas.
     
  5. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    ^ Quite true. You'd never know, for example, that Larry the Cable Guy is from Nebraska. :D
     
  6. Kelso

    Kelso Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Clearly. After 1956, though, she was no longer "portrayed by a woman named Norma Jeane Baker."
     
  7. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    This gets more than a little ridiculous - many people spend most of their lives "portraying fictional personas" to one degree or another. What some people will resort to, to score a debate point, is also fairly ridiculous.

    "Robby The Robot" wasn't an actor, a persona, or anything else of the kind. It was a prop and a costume that was reused in lots of movies and TV shows, nothing other or more than that.
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Don't be so literal. I was using figurative language to create an impression. I'm a writer. We do that sort of thing.
     
  9. Kelso

    Kelso Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Don't be surprised if that turns up as somebody's sig. quote.

    ;)
     
  10. Lynx

    Lynx Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I agree that "Forbidden Planet" could easily be written in as a TOS prequel. I watched that movie about a year ago when one of my channels aired it (for some reason they aired it in the middle of the night but fortunately I have a VHS recorder) and it struck me how similar it was to Star Trek, not to mention that it was a good movie overall.
     
  11. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I didn't say it did?

    I just raised the question.

    It struck me as interesting because there's been a 'Forbidden Planet and TOS - same continuity!' thread on the TOS forum every few years foras long as I can remember (previous incarnations featured more ENT-bashing and less discussion of Marliyn Monroe, so this is an improvement).

    I think if one really wanted to make an argument for there being other
    works in the Forbidden Planet 'canon,' though, Invisible Boy is about the best candidate, not Star Trek.

    Yeah, I got a chuckle out of that too.

    Also this.
     
  12. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Huh? Yes, you raised the question, and that's my answer. You posited the question, "Do you think it puts them in continuity with each other?" and I answered "no" and explained my reasons for that response. Where's the problem?


    This is so obvious that I don't understand why it needs to be pointed out. My point is that "Robby" was treated by Hollywood filmmakers as though he were an actor "playing himself." I explicitly phrased it in those terms, not as a literal reality but as the conceit embraced by the filmmakers and television producers employing the character. I've been discussing it all along as a metaphor, so I really don't understand what the objection is.

    The point is that sometimes fictional characters transcend the continuity of the works in which they're introduced and can be incorporated into other works without any implication that the continuity of their original work is being included in the package. Robby was a character created for Forbidden Planet, but he transcended that film and became an independently existing character, a pop culture meme in his own right. And The Invisible Boy was the first instance of that happening. Robby was the breakout "celebrity" of Forbidden Planet. If the breakout star had been a human actor, say Anne Francis, the studio would've cast her in other movies in different roles, different character names, like they would do with any star they wanted to cultivate. But in this case, the "star" was a character rather than a performer, so they treated the character as a performer, and "cast" him in other films under his own famous name.
     
  13. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Ah, but nobody said that it 'automatically put them in continuity,' I was curious as to whether or not anyone would argue that was the case. If it was automatically true, then we'd all already know they were in the same continuity, wouldn't we?
     
  14. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk Cartoon Premium Member

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    They'd be better off using Forbidden Planet as a sequel to "Lost In Space".
     
  15. larryman

    larryman Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    That's close. But I'd prefer a re-imagined Lost In Space as a spin-off of the Forbidden Planet universe. The Robinson family and a few other families, aboard a Bellerophon-style ship... that becomes Lost In Space. :D
     
  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    ^Wouldn't work. LiS was set in 1997 and depicted the first human attempt at space colonization. It would have to come much sooner than FP.

    Plus there's the problem that Robby appeared twice in LiS in two different roles. I shudder to contemplate the fanboy rationalizations for that...
     
  17. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk Cartoon Premium Member

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    [FanboyRationalization]Obviously these cultures are offshoots of or influenced by the Krell[/FanboyRationalization]
     
  18. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    John Munch is another example of this.

    We know Law & Order and Homicide share a universe, because they had regular crossovers, but not every show Munch appeared in (X-Files? :guffaw: ) must share as well.
     
  19. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    LOL. Bravo for life's little ironies, huh?
     
  20. Dukhat

    Dukhat Vice Admiral Admiral

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    This is the first I've read about someone speculating that FP was a prequel to TOS (although I'm new here so you can take that into account). Nevertheless, although I agree with Christopher that FP is it's own animal, I think that TOS Purist's "thought experiment" is just that - a fun "what-if" moment in that he's not downright exclaiming that it is in fact a TOS prequel, just what people think of the idea.

    So, in the spirit of fun, I also think it would have made a good TOS prequel, with the following caveats:

    1. You'd have to eliminate ENTERPRISE from the equation (which many people don't seem to have a problem doing :)), and

    2. You'd have to either ignore FP's opening history of manned spaceflight, or ignore TOS's history of manned spaceflight it establishes later in the series. And TNG's. And DS9's. And VOYAGER's.

    Anyway, all the hallmarks of early TOS are there. A united planetary organization; similar tech, weapons, uniforms, sets; and of course the triad of the commander, first officer and doctor. Heck, it even takes place in the same century. Not to mention that it's a damn fine movie.
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2009