Sunday, February 24, 2008

Trek Remastered -- "Operation -- Annihilate!"

"Captain’s log, stardate 3289.8. I am faced with one of the most difficult decision of my life, unless we find a way to destroy the creatures without killing their human hosts, my command responsibilities will force me to kill over a million people."

"Operation -- Annihilate!" is this week's new Remastered episode, the one with the flying parasites that take control of the colonists on Deneva. It was the last episode of ST's first season.

It's notable for several reasons, the most obvious of which is the location shooting for the outdoor scenes. This was done at the futuristic-looking campus of the TRW Corporation in Redondo Beach, California, and was one of Trek's most striking "sets".

You can see some Remastered images and read an interview with the producers here, and more Remastered screenshots and FX video at this page. In this version, we finally get to see the ultraviolet light satellites being launched.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Free Trek episodes online

CBS has started a new "network" of streaming video sites that are allowed to show episodes from the CBS library. In their "Classics" collection you can watch episodes of shows like MacGyver, The Twilight Zone, and.... all three seasons of Original Series Star Trek!

These are not the Remastered versions but the original broadcast episodes, without the syndication cuts. The streaming is a little choppy. Even so, it's a great thing to be able to watch any show, anytime, and for free -- after watching an ad or two.

I've got a best-of DVD set of TZ, but there are plenty of other terrific episodes that I don't have and would like to watch. I hope they put up more than just the first two seasons available now.
And I've been wanting to see Hawaii Five-O for a long time now. I only remember seeing one or two of those, a long time ago. I remember the Sanford and Son parody more than the original Five-O.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

New Trek movie pushed back to May '09

Bummer. The movie is on schedule but The Powers That Be at Paramount think it could be a summer blockbuster (and make more money for them), so they've pushed it back from this Christmas to next May. It's good that they will have more time to work on it, but it's five more months for us to wait.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Trek Remastered -- "The Ultimate Computer"

This weekend is the premiere of "The Ultimate Computer". In this Second Season episode, a new computer system is tested aboard the Enterprise during a Starfleet wargame, with disastrous results.

Fans have been waiting for this one because it's the only Original Series episode where we see several Constitution-class starships on the screen at the same time. The dialogue and storyline suggest a space battle but the limits of time and money didn't allow for the special effects that you would expect. The CBS-Digital team gets to create all the action that should have been there in the original. has a couple of articles up showing the first preview image from the new effects and a short interview with TOS-R producers Mike and Denise Okuda and Dave Rossi about their work, including more new photos. It should be great!

"It appears, Captain, we've been doing what used to be called 'pursuing a wild goose'."
- Spock

Friday, February 01, 2008

Why not a Queen rock opera/musical?

Earlier this week, I heard two Queen songs on the radio in the same day, then the next day I saw two commercials in a row that used Queen music. The idea popped into my head:

"Why hasn't there been a musical -- or "rock opera" -- using Queen's music?"

Their music was huge in scope, and Freddie Mercury was a big fan of opera, anyway. It's a natural. If they could make a musical out of Abba songs (which was good, by the way), or Billy Joel (blah...), then where's the love for Queen?

Well, someone else already had my bright idea. Evidently there has been a musical produced and performed all over the world. It played in Vegas in 2006 and ran in Chicago in April-May of '07. I had no idea.

But I suppose I can pat myself on the back because they used my idea for "Bohemian Rhapsody" as the finale. What else?

Speaking of Queen, about ten years ago I heard that (soon-to-be-Dr.)Brian May was a big Warhammer 40,000 fan. He'd play with his kids. Same with Robin Williams, too -- he had an Eldar army at that time. Looks like he's switched to online gaming.

Trek Remastered -- "The Changeling"

This week is a great Second Season episode, "The Changeling". The Enterprise finds a 200-year old interstellar probe from Earth which has somehow gained intelligence and incredible power, threatening the ship and all life it encounters.

It's another of the Kirk-vs.-computer stories, and the general idea was revisited in Star Trek: The Motion Picture as V'Ger. Look for the director, Marc Daniels, as Nomad inventor Jackson Roykirk in an on-screen photograph.

One more week until "The Ultimate Computer"...

"Congratulations, Captain; a dazzling display of logic."
"Didn't think I had it in me, did you?"
"No, sir."
- Spock and Kirk