Probably sounds dumb but I am enjoying TOS/TAS in a new way

Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by telerites, Jun 21, 2020.

  1. Daddy Todd

    Daddy Todd Fleet Captain Premium Member

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2004
    One of the challenges was trying to time the turnover of a C60 cassette to a commercial break. Turn it over too early, and miss the ending. Wait too long, and risk losing crucial dialog during the tape flip. And let’s face it, every word of dialog was crucial to us back then!

    I can still remember where Side One of the tape ran out for “The Changeling”: Nomad commenting that “inefficiency exists...” then a few seconds of tape leader. Then CLICK!

    If I try hard, I can even conjure up a memory of what that drawerful of cassettes smelled like. Yeah, I guess I was a weird kid!

    ETA: Oh, and @telerites, I’m having a blast with this. Glad you started the thread!
     
    Phaser Two, Neopeius, J.T.B. and 2 others like this.
  2. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2014
    The BBC never had adverts so when I turned over the tape I always lost a few seconds of chat! The second side always started with a hum and then a bit of dialogue that I never really understood compared to the last few moments on side one!!! :crazy:
    JB
     
    Methuselah Flint likes this.
  3. Grant

    Grant Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2006
    I was another that used a tape recorder in the 70s. Someone once pointed out that Star Trek was a bit of a radio play that once you knew the format and the set design it lent itself very well to just the audio. While another show from desilu Mission Impossible was pretty much in incomprehensible audio only because so much of it was the team working their technological background with no dialogue-- just the audience for example watching Greg Morris do his technological behind-the-scenes Magic to fool the bad guys in a lot of the episodes
     
  4. diankra

    diankra Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    Plus also the audio of the BBC trailer for Trek, which ran right after War Games 10 (as the visuals would all be clips, it could probably be recreated on video, but as no shot list exists it would only be a guess for the parts with voiceover rather than series dialogue).
     
  5. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2014
    My Father always tried to put me off recording the soundtracks of TV shows as with Space 1999 especially, he said that it was such a visual show that you wouldn't know what was going on years later if you kept the recordings! How little he could have guessed that within five years video tapes of sci-fi films and TV shows would be available to the public anyway! :techman:
    JB
     
    Phaser Two likes this.
  6. marlboro

    marlboro Guest

    Very cool thread.

    I'm a fan of old time radio, and I would love to see (hear) some Trek audio dramas. I know that there are some modern Doctor Who audio dramas, so maybe it isn't such a far fetched idea. It seems like an ideal way to produce new Trek on a modest budget.
     
    Methuselah Flint likes this.
  7. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2014
    The Audio Dramas have their fans and their enemies and also bring up the debate about just how canon they're meant to be and whether this one fits in here or not! A bit like just how Discovery and Enterprise did and then still is splitting the fan base! :eek:
    JB
     
  8. marlboro

    marlboro Guest


    if it's good, it's canon, if it stinks it ain't. Take what you want and leave the rest.

    TOS would have made a great radio program. Good writers, good sound effects, actors with distinctive voices, and a charismatic leading man.
     
    Phaser Two and ZapBrannigan like this.
  9. hofner

    hofner Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    May 8, 2003
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    I grew up watching Star Trek reruns through the seventies but I guess I was one of those who didn't bother trying to record the audio. The show was broadcast five days a week and it was such a visual show, listening to the audio didn't appeal to me. I'm not putting anyone down for doing it, it was just not my thing. I was a voracious reader and I'd rather just read a book. Of course, I got all the Star Trek literature there was including the Technical Manual and the Enterprise blueprints along with the fotonovels of course. Man, I spent hours and hours for years poring over the manual and blueprints.

    I would go to the bookstore just avout every day to check out books mostly in the science fiction section and bought the manual and blueprints the day they showed up on the shelf.

    My technical manual was the large format paperback book with the red cover and with the black hardcover and gold lettering. The blueprints came folded into thirds and luckily, I quickly realized I had better store them rolled up rather than refold them because they would have very soon fallen apart.

    Hah, aside from the tos Enterprise, I thought the '78 battlestar Galactica was the coolest looking ship and when I saw what was supposed to be the blueprints of the Galactica appear at the bookstore, I was so excited. So I was pretty disappointed to find it had only a few drawings and was not deck by deck blueprints.

    A big problem I had with the Blish adaptations was that the first three books which had some of my favorite episodes, were just throwaways, very short and quite different from the broadcast episodes, it wasn't until Star trek 4 or at least 5 that he started following the broadcast eps more faithfully. Many times over the years, I wished Blish would redo the eps from those first three books but alas, he never did.

    Robert
     
    Neopeius and J.T.B. like this.
  10. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Oh, the early ones are more interesting. I mean, the ones that just retell the episodes exactly are kind of redundant, because I saw the episodes over and over again in syndication and had them practically memorized. The early ones that took liberties were much more interesting, because they offered new and different material. Sometimes Blish's interpolations were more interesting than what was in the episodes, like his "polywater" explanation for the Psi 2000 virus. And Blish's take on "Operation: Annihilate!" is much better than the episode we got, a valuable glimpse at an abandoned earlier draft.

    Anyway, I gather that most of the later ones weren't really by Blish at all, but by J.A. Lawrence under his name.
     
    Neopeius likes this.
  11. Maurice

    Maurice Fact Trekker Premium Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Location:
    One ferry ride from Starfleet HQ
    It's funny that anyone would think Star Trek, talky as it was, was so visual that you could not follow the story from audio, when it was actually Mission: Impossible shot next door that would be impossible to follow. :)
     
  12. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2013
    Location:
    New York State
    I hit the bookstore a minimum of once a week back then, during the Bantam - Ballantine era, the pre-home video heyday of TOS syndication. The Blish books came out one by one, and a little later the two Franz Josephs and the Trimble Concordance. It was great.

    A tremendous thing about complete-series Blu-ray sets is the stunning amount of special features they can deliver. The TOS and Lost in Space sets both pack them in, and The Twilight Zone Blu-ray box does as well, in this case including a bunch of radio dramas. I haven't gotten to them yet, but it's nice to know they're there.

    Another one I have is on the DVD release of Captain Horatio Hornblower. It includes the one-hour Lux Radio Theater version of the movie, starring the voices of Gregory Peck and Virginia Mayo. I have listened to that one, and while the movie is a much fuller experience, you can easily tell how great this stuff was for the many people who didn't even own a TV set yet (Jan. 1952).
     
    marlboro likes this.
  13. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    To some extent, yes, but he also interpolated new ideas and content of his own. Novelizers back then weren't expected to copy slavishly, but were free to embellish, expand, and interpret the works they adapted to fit their own style. Look at how much Vonda McIntyre added to her TWOK and TSFS adaptations, or how massively Isaac Asimov rewrote Fantastic Voyage to make the science more credible.

    The most interesting thing that Blish did, perhaps, was to work in allusions to concepts from his own original SF, mainly the Cities in Flight universe, with references to things like the Vegan Tyranny and the Cold Peace. He was basically writing Star Trek as if it took place in his universe, or one very much like it.
     
    Neopeius likes this.
  14. hofner

    hofner Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    May 8, 2003
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Maurice said:

    It's funny that anyone would think Star Trek, talky as it was, was so visual that you could not follow the story from audio, when it was actually Mission: Impossible shot next door that would be impossible to follow. :)



    Oh, I didn't mean you could not follow the story from audio, I never even thought that far into it, I just meant it didn't appeal to me to try to record the audio back then. I'm talking about how I felt at the time which is not necessarily how I feel now.

    I meant the show was so visually interesting it hardly even occurred to me to record just the audio which is not to say it wasn't also interesting in itself.

    I guess one reason is the sound quality would have been pretty bad, all I had was a cheap portable cassette tape recorder with a built in microphone and I couldn't afford to buy very many tapes.

    Ironically, much later I ended up listening to tos eps only through audio anyway. in the late stages of slowly going completely blind, when I so-called 'watched' tos among other things on my TV, I was only listening, I couldn't even see the screen anymore.

    I'm very much into listening to audio books now and I don't have a TV anymore but once in a while, I'll listen to some old TV series if they're availible on youtube, but the last I checked, complete tos episodes weren't abailible. I've even listened to a few episodes of My Mother The Car.

    Christopher said:

    Oh, the early ones are more interesting. I mean, the ones that just retell the episodes exactly are kind of redundant, because I saw the episodes over and over again in syndication and had them practically memorized. The early ones that took liberties were much more interesting, because they offered new and different material. Sometimes Blish's interpolations were more interesting than what was in the episodes, like his "polywater" explanation for the Psi 2000 virus. And Blish's take on "Operation: Annihilate!" is much better than the episode we got, a valuable glimpse at an abandoned earlier draft.

    Anyway, I gather that most of the later ones weren't really by Blish at all, but by J.A. Lawrence under his name.


    Interesting. Like I said above I was talking about how I felt in the '70s. For instance, I didn't know then that Blish was using earlier versions of the scripts.

    now, I might be interested in listening to those books in audio format. The Library of Congress Talking Book Library for the Blind and Print Disabled only has Star Trek 5 and 8 but if 1, 2 and 3 are availible at Audible, I might by them.


    Roberrt

    Edit: I deleted my post because it's much easier for me to repost than edit an existing post, apologies.
     
  15. Neopeius

    Neopeius Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2001
    Location:
    OSF Headquarters
    As you can see, you struck a (positive) nerve! Taping shows in audio was very common back in the day. My dad recorded the themes to Secret Agent and The Prisoner on his reel to reel, which is how I encountered them.

    I CANNOT WAIT UNTIL NEXT SEPTEMBER!!!!!! :) (Trek debuts in Journey-land)
     
    Phaser Two and johnnybear like this.
  16. Neopeius

    Neopeius Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2001
    Location:
    OSF Headquarters
    In a related manner, I remember when there was a Trek marathon on a local station in 1982. 17 episodes, starting at 7AM. There were no commercial tapes yet, so this was the only way to get episodes. We had a VCR and a bunch of tapes queued. I distinctly remember getting in a few seconds late on the 11AM episode (Tape 2) and thus for years afterwards, I was missing the first bit of Who Mourns for Adonais.

    As for audio taped episodes, I think I had about two thirds of Doomsday Machine taped.
     
  17. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2014
    Back in 1978 I missed Where No Man on BBC and nearly didn't bother to record the rest but I did and for years it felt odd not having what was essentially the first episode! But it evened out as The Savage Curtain was the last episode in their run and they put it on unannounced on a Saturday morning in 1982 and I caught about thirty five minutes of it on tape! :brickwall:
    JB
     
  18. hofner

    hofner Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    May 8, 2003
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    ZapBrannigan said:

    I hit the bookstore a minimum of once a week back then, during the Bantam - Ballantine era, the pre-home video heyday of TOS syndication. The Blish books came out one by one, and a little later the two Franz Josephs and the Trimble Concordance. It was great.


    Don't forget Ace books. I used to collect trash series like Doc Savage, Nick Carter and The Executioner.

    I also collected every book by Edgar Rice Burroughs. Ballantine published his Tarzan and Mars series while Ace did the rest of his works including his Pellucidar and Venus series.

    Robert
     
    ZapBrannigan likes this.
  19. Daddy Todd

    Daddy Todd Fleet Captain Premium Member

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2004
    For exquisite Ace Books trash, there's nothing that can top the Perry Rhodan series. This was my first serious SF fandom -- I stumbled into the books about the same time my local station finished a run of Star Trek in the after school time slot, and replaced it with Wild, Wild West. WWW was OK, but it didn't scratch my 12-year-old sense of wonder.

    So I started reading the Ace edition of Perry Rhodan, edited by Forry Ackerman and translated from the German by his wife, Wendayne. That was more like it! I'm afraid to try and re-read them today, for fear the Suck Fairy has visited. But yeah, for the rest of my teens, I was into PR fandom, even publishing a dittoed fanzine for a couple years when I was 15-16 or so.

    Astoundingly, Perry Rhodan is still going strong in Germany, coming out with a new 30,000 word novella (published as a booklet) EVERY WEEK! The series started in 1961, so they must be well over 3000 issues by now. In the US, we didn't even get to #150.
     
  20. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2014
    My information is not correct!!!! I'd forgotten that the last official episode in the BBCs 1978-82 run was Operation:Annihilate which turned up on a Monday night as an orphan in the summer of that year! :vulcan:
    JB
     
    Neopeius likes this.