The One Thing You Could Change, TOS Edition...

Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by Farscape One, May 14, 2020.

  1. Farscape One

    Farscape One Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I decided on a thought exercise for myself, and wanted to see what other people would come up with. I am going to do this for each series, except DISCOVERY and PICARD, as they are still currently in production.

    Come up with only ONE thing you would change about a series. It can be something about a character, a storyline, or even something physical, like a different ship design. It can be anything you like, provided it would be used for more than just one episode.


    For our beloved parent series, it's a tough thing to say. There is a lot to love about this show.

    I think the only thing I would change would be some more background and interaction with those outside the big 3... Sulu, Uhura, Scotty, Chekov, Chapel.

    The times we do get some spotlight on them, it's fun and great. They got along well, and you can see this is a crew that is on the edges of known space and they rely completely on each other and like being aroubd each other. I wanted more of that, particularly when you see fun scenes of them all together during the movies.

    What about you folks?
     
  2. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Gene once suggested that the Enterprise carried a platoon of Starfleet Marines. So put them in.
     
  3. Vger23

    Vger23 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    More chance for character development, particularly for the minor players and more hints of continuity between episodes (which was NOT in the style of the times)
     
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  4. Tim Thomason

    Tim Thomason Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I eagerly await the TAS edition.
     
  5. Tribble Threat

    Tribble Threat Commander Red Shirt

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    Much less sexism
     
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  6. ssosmcin

    ssosmcin Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Four more seasons
     
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  7. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    If they figured out the ship's internal arrangement better beforehand, it would save us a bit of early installment weirdness, like saying Kirk's quarters are on Deck 12 (which is in the neck, and ridiculously far from the bridge for the captain to be sleeping). Not a big deal.

    Also, the budget cuts for Seasons 2 and especially 3 would not happen if I were changing things.
     
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  8. Grant

    Grant Commodore Commodore

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    More episodes about the crew and not just the top seven or eight but give more Spotlight to the other 400 and have some of them recur more often.
    Secondly maybe more episodes that were leaning towards horror. Maybe a little bit of a fusion of the outer limits style of mixing science fiction and horror. And that would of course probably required more Planet episodes than the crew being on the ship for most of the episode.
     
  9. StarCruiser

    StarCruiser Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    The problem with having the "rest of them" figure more prominently is that most of the other crew were short term hires or just extras. There would have to be a deliberate attempt to hire (and retain) additional cast members beyond the core 7-8 people.
     
  10. Ryan Thomas Riddle

    Ryan Thomas Riddle Writer and occasional starship commander Premium Member

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    Uhura be given a more prominent role. Have her occupy the navigator station so she'd be up front and center not behind Kirk answering phones.
     
  11. Lord Garth

    Lord Garth Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Rand wouldn't be chopped out of the series.
     
  12. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Kirk, Spock, and McCoy were deliberately cast with top-quality actors, and they lucked out with Scotty. These guys could act.

    But the other supporting actors were not top-tier talents. For Chekov, they saw exactly one actor for the part and hired him on the spot, apparently because he looked "close enough" to Davey Jones of the Monkees. There was no competition for the Sulu role to speak of, and Uhura just so happened to go to a woman GR was having an on-and-off affair with (and it was definitely back on once she was hired, per her own anecdotes). Nurse Chapel was the other woman that GR was cheating on his wife with. It wasn't exactly competitive casting to find the best actors.

    My point is that writing TOS to feature the supporting cast was never going to produce better episodes than focusing on Kirk, Spock, and McCoy. Sorry if that seems harsh, I do love the show.
     
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  13. Bry_Sinclair

    Bry_Sinclair Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Continue with the characters from The Cage (not just Spock).
     
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  14. Henoch

    Henoch Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    I could see her moved up into the command path and replace Chekov at navigation.
    At least they sort of brought Pike back in a guest starring role. ;)
     
  15. plynch

    plynch Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    "boop"

    One change: ditch the miniskirts.
     
  16. ssosmcin

    ssosmcin Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well, let's be fair: most TV series are cast with a headliner or two and then with lesser known actors who either work out or don't. Shatner was the only one who had solid rep at that time. Nimoy was an unknown and De was a character actor from westerns. You say they lucked out with Doohan, they really lucked out with the other two as well. I could absolutely see them sayng "well, worst case, we have Shatner."

    As for the other three featured, only Walter was kind of weak and I blame that more on the accent he was forced to use rather than his actual talent. It never felt comfortable, but he wasn't a poor actor. As for Nichelle and George, I think they were both more than solid performers. They just didn't have much opportunity to show it. But as I watch the series repeatedly into 50 years on, I spot more and more things that are easily missed. Nichelle in particular was very good in the role. She never seemed to look at it as a day job, she inhabited Uhura. Her one true chance to shine in "Mirror, Mirror" is fabulous. Regardless of her history with Roddenberry, she was perfect in the role and it's a crime she wasn't given more to do.

    George, same. He had an excellent technique and could do comedy and drama very well. I mean, look at how he could straddle different shades of Sulu between "The Man Trap," "The Naked Time," "Return of the Archons," "Mirror, Mirror" (he played evil Sulu better than Shatner played evil Kirk), and so on. Regardless ofhow rusty they got as they aged, in the series, this was a very well cast group. Grace Lee was also excellent and deserved better material.

    Back to Walter, like the others, his best showcase was "Mirror, Mirror." That episode did the featured artists huge favors. As evil Chekov, he was a treat. He was also very funny in "Gamesters of Triskelion." And his scream was as good as Shatners.

    Majel was given one episode to show a character with meat and it could have been any guest star in “What Are Little Girls Made Of?” She was okay.

    No show, especially in the 60's, was cast with headliners. No show could afford it. Mission: Impossible was pratically all character actors and unknowns and look how that worked out. Hawaii Five-O had two decent experienced actors and the rest were locals. Irwin Allen - he'd have one or two solid anchors per show and then just see what happened.... It felt like in that era the best actors who weren't in films were 1) past their prime and taking TV jobs (Richard Basehart) 2) were doing the high profile guest star work but needed the security of a series (Shatner, Robert Culp), 3) waiting to be discovered (Gene Hackman, Donald Sutherland).

    Nah, Star Trek was well cast and with very few weak links.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2020
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  17. Farscape One

    Farscape One Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Agreed that it was well cast. But I say Walter Koenig is a much better actor than many give him credit for. For proof, look at his appearances as Bester in BABYLON 5. He was well utilized there, and he brought it every time.
     
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  18. JesterFace

    JesterFace Commodore Commodore

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    TOS ended too soon, more episodes. :)
     
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  19. ssosmcin

    ssosmcin Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Exactly and agreed. The accent was what was holding him back, but even then he did fine when given the chance. As much as he hated what he had to do in The Way to Eden, he was quite good. Not to mention Spectre of the Gun.
     
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  20. Lord Garth

    Lord Garth Vice Admiral Admiral

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    One other thing: I'd have the show run the five seasons and end in 1971.
     
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