Novelisations of the movies...

Discussion in 'Star Trek Movies I-X' started by PaddyRyan1706, Jun 18, 2017.

  1. PaddyRyan1706

    PaddyRyan1706 Ensign Red Shirt

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    Are they considered any good?
     
  2. Scribble

    Scribble Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    It's probably been since the mid-80s that I read them, but from what I remember at the time, I enjoyed TMP-TSFS. I'm not sure if I ever read TVH. I especially liked some of the back story in TWOK with David and Saavik and that Saavik was half-Romulan. Of course, they're not considered Canon.
     
  3. King Daniel Beyond

    King Daniel Beyond Admiral Admiral

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    I read the Motion Picture novel. It's a fascinating look at how Gene Roddenberry imagined the Star Trek universe.

    The only others I've read were the ST'09 and Into Darkness ones, which weren't great and added very, very little.

    I've yet to read them, but I know the Wrath of Khan, Search for Spock and Voyage Home novels come well recommended.
     
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  4. Ar-Pharazon

    Ar-Pharazon Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    Those novels were taken from early drafts of the scripts for the most part.

    So there's stuff in the books that got cut from the movies, or never got filmed in the first place.

    I remember a "scene" from STIV that had Sulu meeting a child who was his great-grandfather. That was pretty cool.

    And yeah, the Saavik is half-Romulan thing.
     
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  5. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    I think I've only read the novelisations of the first four films, but it's been so long since I did I can't really say if they are any good or not.
     
  6. diankra

    diankra Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    As said, TMP is an insight into the pure Roddenberry ideal of Trek. II-IV are superb in expanding on the screen/script material, though you can apparently spot which page of IV McIntyre was on when Richard Arnold said "Stop that".
    The later ones do their best to cope with "As on screen" limits, but with decreasing success.
     
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  7. David cgc

    David cgc Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    TSFS, in particular, goes for almost a third of the book before we reach the beginning of the film, covering Spock's wake, the actual transfer of the cadet crew, and David and Saavik seeing that things have started going haywire in the Genesis Cave, foreshadowing the planet destroying itself. They also hook up, continuing a plot that had been edited out of TWOK.

    Come to think of it, all three of the trilogy novelizations also have a running subplot with Sulu having been slated to captain the Excelsior as in the trimmed TWOK scene, with him losing the job because of the Genesis controversy in TSFS. He's also consistently referred to by the rank of Captain, at least in the original editions (there was an omnibus collection that revised that detail so he was still currently a Commander, as he was on-screen).
     
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  8. evillouie

    evillouie Ensign Newbie

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    From what I remember, most were very good and added to the story. Although sometimes the authors get carried away with subplots. For example, in the novelisation of Star Trek IV, every other chapter is a subplot about the 2 garbage men who were in the park and saw the bird-of-prey land. They had such little screen time in the movie that if you blinked you would miss it, and they were only in there to provide some comedy. Yet, there was an entire unnecessary back story about them, which became more and more annoying with every chapter in which they appeared. So, I skipped their chapters and it made for a much better read!
     
  9. John Clark

    John Clark Commodore Commodore

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    It's been a while, but I recall enjoying the ones for The Motion Picture, Wrath, Search and Undiscovered the most.
     
  10. Tallguy

    Tallguy Commodore Commodore

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    What authority did Arnold have a year before TNG? Roddenberry had no authority on TVH, so why would Arnold?

    I've always been curious about the astonishing luck that someone had in naming Sulu's "new ship" Excelsior in the TWOK novel. I mean, even if it was in the actual script for the scene that got cut they certainly weren't thinking "Excelsior will be a ship in the next movie as a rival / replacement for the Enterprise". And if it WASN'T in the script and VM invented it whole then I also can't imagine someone going back to the novel of TWOK and grabbing the name from there. (They certainly didn't elaborate on Saavik's back story from either the novel of script of TWOK.) Then nine years later Meyer makes TUC and gives Sulu the Excelsior, lining up with a plot thread that had never even been whispered on screen. Remarkable.
     
  11. jaime

    jaime Commodore Commodore

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    V expands on things well, though I don't remember much. There's a lot of backstory for the laughing Vulcans dog.
     
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  12. Trimm

    Trimm Captain Captain

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    The TSFS novel is among the very best Trek books ever written.
     
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  13. Vger23

    Vger23 Commodore Commodore

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    If I recall correctly, the Excelsior subplot in TWOK was both scripted and filmed, but obviously cut. Someone on here had posted a link to the audio not long ago.

    So given that the novelization was built off the early script drafts, and given that Nick Meyer was involved in the writing and direction of both films, it's actually not too crazy.
     
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  14. Vger23

    Vger23 Commodore Commodore

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    The TMP novelization is fascinating. Lots of quirky stuff about New Humans (oh, 70's Gene...you're so interesting) and other little sub plots. There were scenes from earlier versions of the film (EVA sequence, etc) that are featured, as well as a jarring and graphic expansion on the transporter accident. It's a nice companion piece to the movie.

    TWOK expands a lot on Saavik and David and goes into a LOT more detail exploring the Regula 1 scientists and their plot line. There's a really graphic chapter that describes, in unnecessary detail, what happened when Khan arrived at the station looking for Genesis.

    TSFS is mind numbing and self-indulgent. Most of the novel doesn't follow or relate to the movie at all. It's really only the last several chapters that resemble anything that the movie was.

    I haven't read TVH since the late 80s. Nothing too interesting there.

    The TFF novelization is a great companion piece to the film, and fills in so many of the plot holes rather nicely. Big expansion on Sybok's character and motives, Nimbus III, and other character's "secret pains."

    The TUC novelization is very similar in terms of being complimentary to the feature film. Nice subplot about how certain incidents leading up,to the events of the film had increased tensions to the brink of open war.
     
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  15. David cgc

    David cgc Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    There's an old urban legend that the TMP novel was ghostwritten by Alan Dean Foster, which as I understand it originated both with a misprinted foreign edition, and the fact that ADF actually did ghostwrite the Star Wars novelization that was credited to George Lucas. TMP isn't written anything like an ADF novel, and if you know even a bit about Roddenberry, it's obviously him. Tells include the weird, juvenile sexuality, futurism, and sexual futurism, and my favorite, long lines of italic text, emphasizing whole sentences at a time. That's something you might do (as an underline) in a script to emphasize some description of particular emphasis, but is generally considered excessive in a novel.
     
  16. Ar-Pharazon

    Ar-Pharazon Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    Reminds me of this
     
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  17. Tallguy

    Tallguy Commodore Commodore

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    Do you know where I can find this audio? I know that the promotion scene was filmed. I just didn't know that Excelsior was named.

    I've reread TMP, TWOK, and TSFS many times over the years. The funny thing about TWOK and TSFS is that the very best parts are not from the film. Then she gets to what was on screen and it kind of slows the book down!

    Saavik is amazing in both novels.

    She has a couple of quirks to her writing. She refuses to capitalize "Earth", everyone is a polytheist (reading it now, it sounds like nuBSG), and she will not write the astronomically inaccurate Ceti Alpha. She insists on Alpha Ceti.

    TVH had almost none of the pop and sizzle of the other two novels. I read it once in 1986. There is some good stuff about the trial. She also does a common novelization trick of trying to make a dumb scene make sense. Scotty explains to McCoy that he was just pulling Bones' leg: Of course he knows who invented transparent aluminum: It was this guy. So it's all fine. There is a subplot of a conspiracy theorist hounding our Heroes, which now that I think of it may have been left over from Eddie Murphy's character.

    There is some very good stuff on Vulcan. Another happy coincidence: In TSFS VM explained Amanda's absense by saying that she was an adept at whatever order it was that ran Mt. Seleya so she could not be involved with the Fal Tor Pan. Then we get to TVH and there she is!

    I started to read TFF. There is a lot of good character stuff. Sadly I never finished it, though I did finish the novelization of Batman that summer. So sad. I did read The Lost Years, also by J.M. Dillard, which seemed to follow some of her threads on Vulcan society.

    Her TUC was alright. As mentioned, it has a subplot that the cloaked Bird of Prey had been causing mayhem on Federation worlds. It nearly kills Carol Marcus, who Kirk has reunited with as he neared retirement.

    She does re-write the mind meld scene to make it far more consensual. "Spock would never cross that line!" I think he would. If it were logical.

    Yes. 1) I too thought it was ADF.
    2) I feel very foolish that I ever thought so, because as you said, it's mainline Roddenberry, for all the reasons you mentioned. I first read it when I was eleven. I read it now and I realize that only GR could have come up with the Deltans. The man had issues.

    It gives Roddenberry the chance to make a pretty good reconciliation between his advanced future society and why his characters on TV acted like they walked out of Gunsmoke. Kirk and the men and women of the frontier are throwbacks and not really in step with what is going on in "civilized" parts of the Federation.

    It's adorable how he has an Officer's Lounge where anybody may enter because we don't discriminate on rank. But nobody does out of respect for the officers. So it isn't discrimination if it's voluntary? I have always wondered what would happen to the crewman who said "Hey, there's a helluva view up there. I'm gonna go chill."

    I do wish he had written more. I wonder if I would love TMP as much as I do without this novel.
     
  18. Nyotarules

    Nyotarules Commodore Commodore

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    Good, no. Entertaining definitely
    Read TMP as a child, went right over my head, now I know why.
    Bought the JJ verse books but the more I watch or read the more I ROFLOL so take from that what you will.
     
  19. Galileo7

    Galileo7 Commodore Commodore

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    Agree, TMP novel is good.
     
  20. mb22

    mb22 Commander Red Shirt

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    She has a couple of quirks to her writing. She refuses to capitalize "Earth", everyone is a polytheist (reading it now, it sounds like nuBSG), and she will not write the astronomically inaccurate Ceti Alpha. She insists on Alpha Ceti.

    My understanding of the 'gods' quirk was that everyone is now an atheist (as per Roddenberry). Traditional monotheism is such a thing of the past that characters don't even reference the Judeo-Christian God anymore in their exclamations.