The City on the Edge of Forever

Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by Trekker4747, Sep 12, 2019.

  1. Trekker4747

    Trekker4747 Boldly going... Premium Member

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    This is my favorite episode of the entire franchise. There's really nothing else like it, even the best of my favorite series (TNG) can't compare. It's just an elegant, beautiful, episode with great performances from the three main characters and Joan Collins's Edith Keeler.

    There's a moment in it that for me really sums up the "spirit" of Trek as I see it and that's a future of humanity that's gotten it's shit together. Keeler, who's literally met an alien (though she doesn't know it) finds the behavior in Kirk more bizarre and out of place to 1930 Depression Era America than Spock's entire modius operandi.

    She notes that his work ethic and says his behavior puts him out of place as if he belongs somewhere else entirely, he's unlike any man she's ever met. And that, to me, is just the "magic" I have for Trek. A future where humanity has gotten it's shit together and behaves properly. Yeah, there's some slips here and there, but overall we got our act together.

    The "aura" I get from the likes of Discovery is that the people of that ship, in that series, wouldn't stand out in the same way Kirk does in 1930s Earth. They'd blend right in as their behavior, from what I've seen, just seems too "common" to present-day behavior. The "magic" of Trek's future is lost in that series.

    For me.

    But, CotEoF for me is just, really, a wonderful, beautiful, episode and I really feel Kirk's pain as he strains away from watching Keeler get hit by the car and his, "Let's get the hell out of here," at the end. ("Hell" as an expletive in 1960s TV?! People's ears must've caught fire!")

    Collins is just lovely and marvelous in this, easy to see how Kirk fell for her and her uncommon ways. Too bad she was herself out of her time to the point she was a threat to all of humanity so she had to die.

    It's the episode I devote myself to watching for Trek's anniversary. (Which I'm recognizing a few days late this year. Been a bit busy/side-tracked.)
     
  2. Doctor Bombay

    Doctor Bombay Captain Premium Member

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    It's my favorite too. It moves so smoothly mainly because it went through so many rewrites... polished like a gem.

    And you're right. The denizens of STD really don't stand out beside the people of today.
     
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  3. Commishsleer

    Commishsleer Commodore Commodore

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    Yes I agree probably the best episode of Trek.
    But being so not really say representative of the series like Picard's flute playing episode - a great episode for the lead.
    This was also a great episode for Spock and sort of defined the Kirk Spock relationship to me. I'm not sure whether Ellison put in the line about Spock belonging at Kirk's side or was it in the rewrites..
     
  4. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    But Kirk isn't an alien is he, he just works in outer space!
    JB
     
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  5. Trekker4747

    Trekker4747 Boldly going... Premium Member

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    I mean, that Keeler has met an alien (Spock) but finds Kirk's behavior more noteworthingly "odd" to point out how out of place he seems.
     
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  6. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    In the lap of squalor I assure you.
    Beautiful people draw us in, and then we got to turn the world upside down sometimes to justify wanting to kiss one of them, before we know their surname.
     
  7. cgervasi

    cgervasi Commander Red Shirt

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    It felt like a great movie. Even now when I watch it, it feels like a movie's worth of material in a show without seeming at all rushed.
     
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  8. Keith1701

    Keith1701 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Great Episode
     
  9. Delta Vega

    Delta Vega Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Over rated
    Joan Collins really is a pollution
     
  10. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    A pollution? How do you come by that theory, Delt?
    JB
     
  11. Delta Vega

    Delta Vega Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I just don't like her Johnny, its my opinion, I suppose others will love her.
    She's an insufferable diva.
     
  12. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well maybe, Delt! I know my Mother saw her once in real life in London back in the fifties and she was disgusted with her because she didn't flush the toilet! :lol:
    JB
     
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  13. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    We're talking about Shatner and we're accusing Collins of being a diva?

    It is a great episode, and could easily have been stretched into a two-parter without becoming bloated. Keeler is a great character but it would have been nice to see a bit more of her revealed.

    I really enjoyed seeing kick ass Rand in Ellison's original draft but having seen how much fun could be had with some of the wider cast being sent back in time in STIV , I think it would have been great to send Uhura back too to try and address a few social issues head on. That would have been too much for the single episode, but in a two-parter, why not.

    I think the episode serves to highlight Kirk as the flawed, lonely leader, constantly being forced to choose between personal happiness and duty, until we get to middle aged Kirk accepting that he derives personal happiness from doing his duty in Generations.
     
  14. Delta Vega

    Delta Vega Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Who's talking about Shatner ?
    I certainly wasn't.
    It's my opinion that Collins is an insufferable diva
    I just don't like the woman.
    Also, in my humble opinion, "Amok Time" or "The Enemy Within" or "Balance of Terror" are better episodes.
    Isn't it all about opinions ?
     
  15. Dale Sams

    Dale Sams Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Enemy Within requires so much hand-waving (Beam down more blankets?? How about some gloves. How about a ****ing tent????) ("The double had interesting qualities wouldnt you say"?) That its hard to put in the same category as the other two you mentioned.

    Still a great great episode though. As much TZ as Trek.
     
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  16. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yeah I always wondered why no tents, sleeping bags, space suits or simple chemicals that can generate heat when mixed in Enemy Within.

    I prefer Balance of Terror, the Doomsday Machine, and Corbomite Manoeuvre to COTEOF although it is definitely up there with Amok Time, Devil in the Dark, and a few other of my favourites.
     
  17. Cutie McWhiskers

    Cutie McWhiskers Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It's a good one for sure, but it may have had more impact if her death was caused by someone who hated her movement or enemy agent or something. Ramp up the heavy irony factor to 9 instead of just traipsing into the road, la la la, *splat*. But that would likely be seen a mile away, having to introduce an antagonist who's mentioned in the news or something. Not to mention how to prevent The Big Three(tm) from being offed in the process.
     
  18. Cutie McWhiskers

    Cutie McWhiskers Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Neither do those in The Orville, the show one of those folks on youtube states "is like Star Trek but doesn't have a stick up its butt", missing the entire point of both Trek and sci-fi in a sad twist of irony. But I still can't disagree that TNG did overdo it with the "evolution" of humanity into a bunch of bland proto-Vulcans at times. But it's become iconic nonetheless. (DS9 was a breath of fresh air in that regard, allowing more interpersonal conflict while striving to keep true to Roddenberry's ideals and was largely successful, for the most part. :) )

    While all sci-fi sometimes hinges on the colloquialisms and slang during the time in which it's made, it often makes conscious attempts to avoid doing so. Unlike "The Brady Bunch", TAS didn't have every episode with every character spouting lines like "groovy" and "beam me up to my pad", "Jones, you're a square", and so on. In one regard, thankfully the 20x0s so far haven't had any slang all that great to begin with, or sartorial styles for that matter but that's a separate issue and nobody's going to bring back flared trousers and/or shoulder pads any time soon. Cor, bring them both back as a new style and everyone would look like a kite. Or upright walking vertically-oriented candy bars. But I digress. The Kelvin movies too are in a similar vein with overuse of current-day lingo. Star Wars Disney characters use a bit too much contemporary language as well. Doctor Who's been no different... do I want to try to sit through yet another regurgitated Terminator installment when the series should have ended on a high note in 1991?

    But I digressed, again. Thankfully humanity changes a ton in that 10 year gap between STD and TOS. Get that canon into a cannon at warp speed. Or get some script writers who actually understand enough core elements of Roddenberry's ideas, or watch some episodes and find out what works and what is putrid and discard the putrid and hone what worked, with depth and not superficially like the generic throwaway Kelvin movies, combined with a reasoned timeline if they're going to do a prequel to answer questions nobody was wanting resolved in such a format to begin with. Or just don't do prequels, many don't fit in. Even "Caprica" and, like ST ENT, that one didn't have a decades'-long gap between itself and the show it stemmed from.
     
  19. Sir Rhosis

    Sir Rhosis Commodore Commodore

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    Steven W. Carabatsos' draft does pretty much that on a smaller scale. I didn't like it. http://www.orionpressfanzines.com/articles/carabatsos_city.htm

    Sir Rhosis