Spec phasers?

Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by Dukhat, Jul 14, 2011.

  1. Gary7

    Gary7 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I agree with Robert April, that those were not the proposed phasers. Look at them--they all have different colored lenses. There's no reason the weapon would have those kinds of variations. What they're holding in the publicity photo was meant for that shot only. Back then, color was still relatively new, so trying to capitalize on showing off the spectrum was on people's minds (that's why the 3 section uniforms are distinctly different colors, in addition to being discernible on black and white TV's). Holding flashlights was a really stupid idea. They already had the 1st pilot "Cage" props... they should have used the phaser pistol and communicators from the pilot, at the very least.


    What I'll never understand is why Mego made those phaser atrocities back in the early 70's. They were a complete joke. And they distorted them in the wrong way--if anything, they should have been smaller, for the smallish hands of the kids who'd be playing with them. And then you have AMT, who made that crappy Exploration set. Now there they had the right idea of miniaturization... but they were so inaccurate. Plus the communicator hinge was poorly designed, which would break off in no time.
     
  2. Dukhat

    Dukhat Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Well, based on the website I linked to, I'd have to disagree with you. Granted it's not like an official source, but from reading the rest of the site, the guy seems to know what he's talking about.
     
  3. Navigator_NCC2120

    Navigator_NCC2120 Captain Captain

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    Yes T'Girl that is the picture. My link to the picture at the trekcore website in my first post did work yesterday. I guess they took offense to me providing a link to it.

    Sorry folks,

    Navigator NCC-2120 USS Entente
    /\
     
  4. Maurice

    Maurice ATARI CX5200 Premium Member

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    You mean the caption "Sadly, the green flashlight did not work out as a sellable toy tie-in"? it's a JOKE, just like the captions above.
     
  5. Dukhat

    Dukhat Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I know it's a joke. But it's also referring to what Justman and Solow were talking about.
     
  6. TIN_MAN

    TIN_MAN Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I tend to agree with Dukhat, because if these were not the phasers mentioned by Justman and Solow, then why include them in the shot at all?

    All the other photos from that shoot show "theme specific" props, such as celestial globes, star maps, the three foot Enterprise etc.

    The only other photos we have with anything resembling a phaser is the one or two with Shatner holding the phaser rifle from "WNMHGB" but that makes no sense in this context!

    But the presence of the 3 footer and the phaser rifle, not to mention the prototype costumes with black collars, make it more likely IMHO that these "flashlights" could be the props referred to by Justman and Solow?
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2011
  7. Gary7

    Gary7 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Again, they had the laser pistols from "The Cage" at that time... why would they use those awful looking flashlights as the new phasers, when the existing laser props were far better? It just doesn't make any sense.
     
  8. TIN_MAN

    TIN_MAN Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    ^^Well, ultimately they didn't. that's kinda the point, they may have gone ahead and used these "spec" phasers for the publicity shoot, but had probably already made up their minds not to use them in the upcoming regular production?

    For all we know, the occasion of this shoot was the first time anybody had really seen these props, since this would have been the opportunity to showcase the new "spec" phasers both to the production team and the public? So maybe no "Cage" lasers were brought out of storage for the shoot because it was assumed that they would be obsolete?

    Once the shoot was under way it was too late to do anything about it except plan better for the future?
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2011
  9. GSchnitzer

    GSchnitzer Co-Executive Producer In Memoriam

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    So here's what Bob Justman said (on page 118):

    "One of the ideas for Star Trek that didn't pan out was the 'great phaser caper.' During preparation for the second pilot, a toy manufacturer had designed and built some phaser weapons 'on spec.' In return. if the series sold, the manufacturer wanted to merchandise toy replicas of these props. I was thrilled: something for nothing! But Gene finally nixed the design, and the deal fell through. Unfortunately, during the intervening period, NBC Publicity, unaware that we had no right to use the spec phasers, shot a photo session with Bill Shatner, Leonard Nimoy and Grace Lee Whitney holding the 'illegal' weapons. NBC used the photos in its 'Sales Brochure.' The weapons were never used in the series; the toy manufacturer never found out. Or if he did, we never heard from him."

    So, what might help is if we saw this Kirk-Spock-Rand "NBC Sales Brochure" to see if the photos in it are simply the flashlight pictures--or if the photos are some unseen-until-now pictures that show some other odd weapon-y prop.

     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2011
  10. TIN_MAN

    TIN_MAN Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    ^^Thanks for the clarification! It would indeed be nice to know if there were any unseen-till-now pics from that shoot, but since these (posted above) that Dukhat is talking about are the most logical candidates from among the early publicity stills, we can assume (for now) that they are indeed the pics in question.
     
  11. Captain Robert April

    Captain Robert April Vice Admiral Admiral

  12. Maurice

    Maurice ATARI CX5200 Premium Member

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    Okay, first I have to point out that as much as I like and refer to Inside Star Trek it has its share of factual errors. Those things are flashlights, not ray-gun props. If you look at other publicity photos you occasionally see characters handling things that weren't in the show (a beaker for one in one Where No Man photo), or this one:
    [​IMG]

    And then there's the globe in a shot with Kirk and Rand visible in this set. Again, just a stock prop.

    It's easier to believe Justman misremembered that detail than that some toy company sent over THREE samples of something that they wouldn't have started manufacturing without a signoff. One prototype, maybe, but three?
     
  13. TIN_MAN

    TIN_MAN Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I would be willing to bet that if Justman is mis-remembering anything, maybe he's gotten the pic of Shatner holding the Phaser rifle prop mixed up with the photo of K/S/R holding the three other props? Maybe it's the phaser rifle that was designed by the toy company? Justman did say that the prop deal was done during the production of the second pilot!
     
  14. Captain Robert April

    Captain Robert April Vice Admiral Admiral

    Not unreasonable...

    As for the accuracy of the Solow/Justman book, don't get Bjo started on that one! As far as she's concerned, Solow sold us all down the river. And Harlan Ellison made his opinion on the subject very clear in his book on "The City on the Edge of Forever".
     
  15. GSchnitzer

    GSchnitzer Co-Executive Producer In Memoriam

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    It doesn't sound like the phaser rifle to me. For what it's worth, Justman describes weapons (plural) that were used for the shoot, not just a weapon. He also said that they were never ultimately used. You'd think that if this funny "great phaser caper" were worthy of his "used in the Sales Brochure" comment, he would have mentioned that it got major screen time in WNMHGB. I mean, "Those guys at NBC Publicity were such knuckleheads, they didn't know we had no right to use the spec phaser props. Oh, except that I did use it for half of the screen time in the pilot even though I wasn't supposed to."
     
  16. TIN_MAN

    TIN_MAN Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Well, obviously they had the rights to use the rifle for WNMHGB, but not after the deal fell through?

    In any event, I'm begining to think this whole thing is another one of those tall tales these producers were famous for, and just chalk it up to that!
     
  17. Maurice

    Maurice ATARI CX5200 Premium Member

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    Does Bjo have specific objections?
     
  18. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

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    [​IMG]

    For what it worth, there's another one. But with a fourth colored gel (yellow).

    Bow before Kirk's death beam.

    :)
     
  19. Dukhat

    Dukhat Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I think you might have skipped my post where I found this. Whatever toy company this was probably had adult size versions made for the spec phasers, as these particular toys were also color-coded (and as you said, it would have been cheap and easy to insert the colored gels).

    Of course I have no proof that these are the same things, but it makes sense to me.
     
  20. Maurice

    Maurice ATARI CX5200 Premium Member

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    I'm surprised anyone actually believes those flashlights were the phaser props. A toy company that proposes building a "ray gun" is going to make something that looks like a GUN, not a flashlight.