Star Trek premiered fifty years ago today. No moment encapsulates the essence of the series better than this one: words (fittingly) by Trek creator Gene Roddenberry, delivered with passion and power by the great William Shatner. (And, yes, it's way past time for me to do a list of my all-time favorite episodes. I'll get on it right away, Captain!)
STAR TREK reruns were a big part of my life growing up, and going to the theaters to catch the latest movie.ReplyDelete
This has been an eventful week for anniversaries.
Monday was the 24th anniversary of BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES.
Tuesday was the 20th anniversary of SUPERMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES.
And today is the 49th anniversary of the 60s Spider-Man and FF cartoons!
And today is the 45th anniversary of John Lennon's IMAGINE album. Quite a week!Delete
Or maybe we're just getting old...? : )
Or maybe we're aging in reverse, because now the entire world wants to celebrate our youth with us! :)Delete
I like your thinking, David!ReplyDelete
BTW, I think my favorite episode is "Balance of Terror."ReplyDelete
There are some similarities with WRATH OF KHAN, in that Kirk never occupies the same room as his opponent, and proves himself a master strategist. You also have a climactic sequence where a sacrifice must be made, and Spock makes the logical choice. A "needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few" moment.
It also features one of the best Trek quotes ever:
"In this galaxy, there's a mathematical probability of three million Earth-type planets. And in all of the universe, three million million galaxies like this. And in all of that... and perhaps more, only one of each of us...Don't destroy the one named Kirk."
And there's something surreal about Mark Lenard, who would later play Sarek, uttering the line, "You and I are of a kind. In a different reality, I could have called you friend."
"Balance of Terror" is a great one. And you're right, McCoy's speech to Kirk is classic.Delete
If I had to pick my favorite episode, it would be the obvious one: "City on the Edge of Forever." And if you consider WRATH OF KHAN an episode, then it's a tie. I made a list in preparation for blogging about this and the episodes were pretty evenly spread among all three seasons—proving that, however awful some of those third season eps were (and they were!), there were some superb stories told even at Star Trek's lowest ebb.
"City on the Edge of Forever" is a fav of mine as well.Delete
If we're counting WRATH OF KHAN, it definitely makes the #1 spot.
And they're saying the plot from "Balance of Terror" will factor into the new Star Trek show, which sounds cool to me.
Sounds good to me, too, David. Really looking forward to the new series.Delete
It's also the 50th anniversary of the beginning of filming "The Prisoner" -- the 50th anniversary of first airing in the UK will be next year, in America the year after that. One of the seminal works of art in any medium of my youth, and one that remains just as influential & fascinating to me even now.ReplyDelete
"Balance of Terror" is indeed a powerful & humane Star Trek episode. But having to choose just one favorite is almost impossible for me! I do have a special affection for "Errand of Mercy", because at the height of the Cold war, it called out both the West & the Communist world as being equally guilty of a childish, ego-driven desire for war. Kirk's embarrassed & chastened comments to Spock at the end, where he admits that without trying to weasel out of it, struck me as another, quieter kind of heroism, even as a boy.
And this is why The Original Series has staying power. It held out hope for an upward evolution of human society, but it also made clear that even in the future, humanity still had a looooong way to go. It was a fusion of hope, heroism, and honest humility. What a damn fine TV series.
"Errand of Mercy" is one of my favorites, Tim, for the very reasons that you point out; also for the alien race that has so transcended human form and limitation. Pretty cosmic for 60's TV.Delete
I haven't rewatched THE PRISONER in a very long time, but it was certainly cutting edge TV in its day. Maybe a rewatch is order.
And I'm going to put together my TREK episode list this weekend!
Everyone remembers Plato's Stepchildren for the first interracial kiss in TV history, which it wasn't.ReplyDelete
And yes it was a very important moment, but it also isn't the whole story.
It is also a really good episode with a lot to say about the nature of power, tolerance, the importance of humanity, and the nature of mortality.
If you remember one thing... remember all of it.
The thing with PLATO'S STEPCHILDREN is that Kirk is being forced to kiss Uhura. Would have had a lot more power if the kiss happened in a story where they CHOSE to kiss.Delete
I'm about halfway through my Trek list. I hope to have it up within the next week.