TOS Rewatch

Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by Grendelsbayne, Aug 29, 2016.

  1. UnknownSample

    UnknownSample Commodore Commodore

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    We all know about the universal translator, right? Just checking... I've often thought of this as the first bad one. It's not bad, though, I think I got that impression as a kid because the villagers looked ridiculous. It has reasonably serious dialogue, interesting moments. I love the reference to the saucer section (or "main section") breaking away. Did Scotty say why it couldn't? That would have come in handy in other episodes. As with many subpar ep's everything seems a lot more solid watching Remastered, and on a big screen, with rerecorded music.
     
  2. Grendelsbayne

    Grendelsbayne Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The Doomsday Machine

    It seems strange that a presumably scientifically minded starship captain would look at what is obviously a ship and start talking about the devil. Although the maw of the ship does look a lot like the Eye of Sauron...

    So if the Doomsday Machine needs to feed on planets to fuel itself, how did it cross from one galaxy to another?

    You're out of line, too!... Sir. - Great timing :)

    Shouldn't McCoy have the authority to order Decker to submit to examination if he suspects he's been compromised? And to remove him from command if he refuses to submit to the exam?

    When targeting a seemingly indestructible ship, I think I'd at least aim for the obvious 'seams' in its outer hull. Better chance of finding a chink in the armor than just punching straight through.

    An episode like this really makes you roll your eyes extra hard at the lack of seatbelts. Not only does Sulu fly halfway across the bridge from a single hit, but Kirk and Scotty can't even keep their seats while accelerating at a speed explicitly described as 'just enough to get us moving, no more than that'.

    It's interesting how closely this parallels ST09, right down to Spock debating the commander of the ship about fighting vs regrouping. Only, Kirk going in in complete defiance of logic makes him the hero in 09, while here it makes Decker a tragic figure just barely spared from becoming a villain.

    Overall, I'd say a very solid episode. Decker was too over the top at times, but he had a truly heartbreaking story with an incredibly appropriate end. Far more nuanced than I actually remembered it being. And certainly a nice tough that his sacrifice did ultimately lead to the salvation of Rigel, after all, even though it logically couldn't possibly do so.
     
  3. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    Was there ever any evidence to say the machine came from another galaxy?
     
  4. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

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    I said out, dammit!
    IIRC, Windom was sort of disdainful of being cast on what he thought was a sci fi kiddies' show, and decided he wasn't going to take it seriously.

    It was in the dialog, no? Something about its course showing that it obviously came from outside the galaxy.
     
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  5. Qonundrum

    Qonundrum Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    And yet Windom played a president in "Escape from the Planet of the Apes", in an era where concepts like abortion and genocide were all okey dokey for a G-rated kids' movie...
     
  6. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    That doesn't prove it came from another galaxy. After all it could have been constructed just outside of our galaxy.
     
  7. Grendelsbayne

    Grendelsbayne Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    No proof, no, but Spock believed it the most logical case (for some reason).
     
  8. Poltargyst

    Poltargyst Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    It's not a ship, is it? And let's just see what your frame of mind is after your ship is wrecked and your entire crew killed.
    Yeah, I often find it overblown to say a threat has come from another galaxy when we know so little of our own. Plenty of room in our own galaxy for a planet killer to have been built and deployed.

    Yes. Or maybe there's some regulation about not relieving the captain in the middle of a crisis.

    I'm sure "just fast enough to get a starship moving" is still quite fast for a human being.
    Why?
     
  9. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

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    I said out, dammit!
    Not sure why it's so important to argue whether I from another galaxy or not. Whatever the dialog suggests is fine with me.
    As for how it got from one galaxy to another - once it ran out of fuel to warp, it coasted. So what if it took millions of years?
     
  10. UnknownSample

    UnknownSample Commodore Commodore

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    Yes, once you get propelled in a certain direction in space, you'll keep on going, unless some gravitational force stops you or diverts you or slows you down. The DW would have our galaxy pulling it forward after it gets away from its source galaxy...
     
  11. Grendelsbayne

    Grendelsbayne Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well, it looks more like a ship than any other non-ship I've seen on the show. And it is undeniably a physical object behaving according to all the natural laws of the universe. So I just find it odd that a professional space explorer should be written in such as way as to invoke the lame 'the Devil did it' explanation.

    Possible, I suppose, but it actually would seem like exactly the time you really should relieve the captain, if it's necessary to do so.

    Which is exactly why the crew really should be strapped in, at least during combat/major crises.

    Why couldn't his sacrifice logically save Rigel, you mean? Because he was in a tiny shuttlecraft up against a seemingly indestructible machine.

    That's a very good point - and, I think, one that actually makes the episode even more poignant. Imagine some totally innocent people millions of years in the future still being haunted by weapons forged in the political hatreds of today.

    I do still wonder a little how believable it is that it could conserve power for so long and be in strong enough working order to resume destroying planets upon arrival, though.
     
  12. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

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    Clarke's Law of technology.
     
  13. UnknownSample

    UnknownSample Commodore Commodore

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    Thank you, Spock. You don't think he meant that literally, do you? Here is what Decker was saying. He was struggling to get across the SCALE of what had happened, the almost unimaginable level of destruction. He was saying that this thing was SO monstrous that it may as well have been concocted by that being who represents ultimate EVIL to a huge portion of humanity. Hell is supposed to be the source of whatever the worst evil is that you, as an individual, can possibly imagine. So this isn't just a dangerous weapon, it goes way beyond that, it goes beyond anything that makes practical sense as a weapon. It's AS IF it was created purely to do the most horrible evil possible, for evil's sake, not a practical purpose.
    --------------------------
    It's a "poetic" way of getting across the unimaginable. The writer is hoping the viewer has the emotional depth to take in the impressions he is leaving.
     
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  14. Grendelsbayne

    Grendelsbayne Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I have the emotional depth to understand what he's saying. I just find it a cheap and unconvincing way to convey those ideas, with no 'poetic' quality at all, imo. And extra unconvincing coming from a character who logically should be a man of science.
     
  15. Grendelsbayne

    Grendelsbayne Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Catspaw

    The first 15 minutes is basically pure atmosphere. Not bad atmosphere, as Halloween lawn decorations go, but still.

    There are shades of both the Squire of Gothos and the Corbomite Maneuver here. Korob actually seems pretty interesting.

    There's lots of demands going on for information, but unless I missed it no one actually said what information they want...

    I like that Kirk basically says he's a very beautiful man. Damn modesty! :lol:

    Korob is actually an intriguing character that I wouldn't have minded seeing again. Shame he just stood in front of a door and let it fall on him... (Although he apparently wasn't actually dead until the end?)

    It seems a bit contrived that Sylvia's necklace can do all the things the wand can but destroying the wand destroys everything. Even moreso that Kirk having the wand gave him leverage when she attacked Korob without a second thought.

    Overall, I would say that this one actually has some interesting points to it. More than its reputation generally would allow for. It is dragged down by the very bad FX regarding the cat and by the somewhat vague motivations behind the plot (I would've loved to know more about where Korob and Sylvia came from and especially why they camel). It also suffered from an Enterprise subplot without the benefit of an interesting character in the lead and without the ability for the Enterprise to actually do anything other than be victims/object lessons. But I do really like the concept of these extra-foreign lifeforms using their super-science to understand the physical and psychological reality of humans. In a way it almost feels like a more realistic version of Trelane/Q, which is of course a funny thing to say about Halloween themed space magic. But there's something about those tiny little puppets that are so incomprehensible you can't even tell which end is the front that really makes you think about what the word 'alien' really means.
     
  16. Poltargyst

    Poltargyst Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    And I think you are WAAAAAY underestimating how emotionally crushed Decker is at this point.

    "Commodore Decker, you just made bad decisions that resulted in the death of every member of your crew and the wreck of your ship. I'm surprised your report is so unprofessional as to invoke the Devil." Come on now. He's just conveying the magnitude of the problem. I see nothing wrong with it nor find it inconsistent for a man of science.
     
  17. Grendelsbayne

    Grendelsbayne Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I disagree.

    Moving on to I, Mudd:

    I like Kirk's reaction to hearing an android say please.

    The Federation has patents and royalties.

    "Obviously" there must be a central control system to guide the androids? Sometimes Spock's logic seems less like a logical deduction and more like a psychic ability to see the future.

    So if all the androids are controlled centrally, how can they split up across interstellar distances?

    I find it interesting that Uhura actually likes the idea of android immortality. I get the feeling most characters in the franchise wouldn't go for it. But she's also still a perfectly loyal member of the crew, which is great.

    I like the whole concept of these androids and their desire for a purpose. They're also possibly some of the most competent 'bad guys' in the franchise, like how Kirk didn't even find out about his crew being beamed down until after it was complete. And their goal is actually equal parts logical and terrifying.

    I have always found the 'overload them with illogic' defense that Kirk uses against robots to be somewhat unconvincing and overly repetitive, but this episode is undeniably the most entertaining example of it.

    I also like the poetic justice of sentencing Mudd to stay behind. At the same time, though, it's hard to imagine how he could survive 500 Stellas without completely losing his mind in a matter of weeks, so it does seem to border on cruel and unusual...

    Overall a solid episode, I thought.
     
  18. Grendelsbayne

    Grendelsbayne Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Metamorphosis

    I'm not sure why, but Commissioner Hedford kind of reminds me of a Vorta from DS9.

    Cochran is 'of Alpha Centauri'? I guess you could rationalize it as him being one of the pioneers to colonize after his invention of warp, but that almost makes it seem like the original idea was that humans colonized multiple star systems before discovering warp.

    I like how pleased Spock is at having been attacked by an electric space cloud...

    Watching the Companion go on about logic actually makes me appreciate Korob and Sylvia more - too often Star Trek assumes that 'truly alien' must mean logical, rather than emotional in a different way.

    Male and female are universal constants?

    Ok, I have to agree with Spock and Kirk. Cochran's attitude is weird as heck.

    The evolution of the Companion's understanding is interesting and makes for a generally good episode. At the end of the day, though, I can't help feeling kind of uncomfortable about how everyone got exactly what they wanted except the sick, vulnerable Commissioner Hedford who was basically forced into a major life changing event and an unwanted relationship at gunpoint. I think this was a story that definitely deserved a more ambiguous, less 'happy' ending.
     
  19. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    It's, you know, one of the clues that he's gotten unhinged.
     
  20. UnknownSample

    UnknownSample Commodore Commodore

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    I think it was a matter of either referencing the Devil, our only shared symbol of evil, or just sitting there silently.

    That first female Vorta may have looked a little like Amanda Donohue.

    The Cloud saved Hedford's life. She was pleased with the result. She said so, and said why. The happy ending was what it was all leading up to. How many of us are caught in psychological traps, that self perpetuate, which we'd be much better off escaping from, which we can't escape from on our own?