Episode 08


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Spock's command skills are tested after a shuttlecraft crashes on a planet overrun by savages ("The Galileo Seven"), Kirk must overcome a childish god ("The Squire of Gothos"), listeners suggest additions to the casual sexism count, and the guys discuss which of the TOS-era movies most closely resemble the source material. [ 1:44:18 || 50.5 MB ]

To listen, click here: http://www.earth-2.net/podcasts/theedgeofforever/episodes/theedgeofforever_008.mp3

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Based on what you guys talked about with which movies feel like their series, isn't it a good thing the films moved away from the feel of series?

Some of the Trek films I find the least enjoyable are the ones that feel like an episode (and in most cases a bad episode) of the show. I'd say the TOS movies are less guilty of this than TNG. TNG had three movies that felt like episodes and bad ones at that. Generations is nothing more than an expanded episode. Insurrection is the MOST guilty of this (even more so that they already did that plot with the Native American settlers on the planet that ended up in Cardassian territory). Nemesis is less so but again it feels like a bad episode trying to be Wrath of Khan and failing miserably.

Wrath of Khan is epic and feels like a classic piece of fiction, something you never quite got with TOS. Balance of Terror is pretty close along with a few others but Khan just feels bigger, feels deeper, and feels like TOS grown up. Same for Undiscovered Country, its darker, more mature?, and explores areas that we never would have on TOS or TNG.

Hope my ramblings there made sense.

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No, that totally made sense.

I feel strongly that some franchises work far better as TV series than as films, and that Star Trek is a prime example of that. You need to have multiple episodes that allow for the range of stories you can tell and the more relaxed pace that allows for the audience to get to know the individual characters. Therefore, the qualities that make for a good film and the qualities that make a film "feel like Trek" are not necessarily going to be the same thing. Trek's slower, more cerebral brand of storytelling almost by definition has to be ditched in a two-hour movie, or you end up with TMP. Likewise, I really enjoy the Abrams movies for what they are, but you can't watch those and come away from it feeling like you just saw anything similar to "Balance of Terror" or "Charlie X" or what have you. Trek's fascination with discovering new things was always a prime theme on the show, whereas from Wrath of Khan onwards Starfleet was made significantly more militarized and there was a lot more shooting and ships blowing up. Which is why Voyage Home feels more like TOS, I think; that gets mostly sidelined in favor of the crew getting into a weird situation and dealing with it on a much more scaled back level, much like the old series.

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I can see what you mean Dan. I feel the same way about most book adaptations into film. Some of them work out pretty well where you can get the gist of the story and its feel into a movie. Two of my favorite examples for that are The Hunt for Red October and Jurassic Park which both changed things along with leaving things out but the core story was there and gets the 'feel' of each book down.

Other books should never be condensed to a two hour film, they need a series or mini-series to really flesh out the concept. Band of Brothers did this perfectly while we see what happens when you try to condense something like World War Z into a film, it just doesn't really work.

Speaking of miniseries, I think Trek would be a good vehicle for that. Especially if your trying to get it back on the air. As a side note of that idea, what about doing Star Trek on cable like AMC, FX, or HBO? I think it could be a good evolution for the franchise and maybe get us another quality show.

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