Friday, March 15, 2013

Where No Man Has Gone Before

The Blog has, for many years, identified himself as a "recovering Trekkie."

In his youth he was, in fact, so much a dedicated "Trekkie" that he preferred to be called a "Trekker."

Because, "Trekkers" are "Trekkies" who take themselves way too seriously.

You are shocked to learn this. I know.

The PC can't go more than two weeks without a Batman reference. So, who would have guessed that he would be into "Star Trek" as well?

The Blog was in his mid-teens when he discovered "Star Trek."

Not during it's original, network run, but a few years later.

"Star Trek" reruns ran on one of our UHF channels, (61? 45? I don't remember.)

While the young blogling was very much into TV and movies, in general, and was determined to pursue a career in show biz, the BlogMom and BlogDad were determined to steer him away from that.

To that end, they gave him a book for Christmas.

A "warts-and-all" look at the production a a television show, "The Making of Star Trek," by David Gerrold, the writer of, arguably, the most famous and popular "Star Trek" episode ever, "The Trouble With Tribbles."

The BlogParent's ploy backfired. The young, future PC became a rabid "Star Trek" fan, and, as it happened, so did the BlogParents. For a couple of years, the family meal wound up being served on TV trays in front of the television, so we could watch the "five year mission" of James Tobias Kirk and crew.

The PC has never attended an actual Star Trek convention. Or ComicCon for that matter. Part of me has always wanted to attend both. But, The Blog is sort of crowd adverse. Especially if the crowd is sweating in costumes.

Besides, Star Trek conventions were for the "cool kids."

I know, the irony is deadly.

Which brings me to the thing that inspired this post.

A couple of nights ago, a FOTB, Teresa, posted a "Next Generation" blooper reel on Facebook.

You can watch it here.

Virtually all of the classic "Star Trek" blooper reels are available at YouTube. Look them up, yourself.

This got The Blog thinking...

"Is there anything more entertaining than a 'Star Trek' gag reel?"

The Blog may be wrong.

Maybe "Star Trek" gag reels are only entertaining to Trekkies.

But, I kind of think that James T. Kirk and Mr. Spock are iconic enough that anyone would get a kick out of seeing the self-important Kirk/Shatner slamming into a non-operating sliding door or the emotionless Vulcan, Spock cracking up, would be entertaining.

And, how can one not be amused when Patrick "I am a Shakespearean actor, dammit!" Stewart loses his shit after another forgotten line?

In the 1980s, virtually every comedy movie included a "blooper" or "gag" reel after the end credits.

In the late '80s there were at least two television shows dedicated to bloopers.

People who work in television and film have a love/hate relationship with gag reels.

They are a staple of Christmas and Wrap parties. We laugh hysterically.

But, when an actor blows his lines and unleashes a string of obscenities, on the set, after 15 takes, we cringe and think about how long our day is going to be.

But, way back in the 1970s, before blooper shows, and before YouTube, "Star Trek" gag reels were a thing of legend. The Holy Grail of gag reels.

We all knew that they existed. But, the only people who got to see them were the true believer, die hard Trekkers, who attended the conventions.

Virtually all of the classic "Star Trek" blooper reels are available at YouTube. Look them up, yourself. 

And in the summer of 1978, the future PC and his girlfriend attended a packed house at Cleveland's Richfield Coliseum, a venue that usually only sold out for arena rock rock gods like KISS or Queen, to hear a talk from "The Great Bird of the Galaxy" himself, Gene Roddenberry, where the young PC not only got to hear Mr. Roddenberry's stories, and see the original "Star Trek" pilot, but also, the elusive gag reels.

Trekkie Nirvana!

When all of that was done, Gene made an historic announcement.

"Star Trek: The Motion Picture" was in development.


I was there.

And it was a true geekgasm.

Granted, the movie that was made turned out to be kind of awful.

But, many of the sequels that followed were pretty darned good.

Not all of them. But, most.

Two of those better movies were shot on the very stages that The PC currently works at.

Not that that means much, but the PC's inner 17-year-old enjoys that fact.

A couple of years ago, the brilliant J.J. Abrams rebooted the original "Star Trek" and this recovering Trekkie fell off the wagon.

Abram's next "Trek" is imminent. and The Blog can't wait!

And the same J.J. Abrams is now poised to breath new life into the "Star Wars" saga.

And now, after decades of nerd-dom, The PC feels like one of the cool kids.

Vindication, at last!

1 comment:

  1. I was there too. It made a huge impression on my 7-year-old self. Whenever I hear the name "Roddenberry," an image of a disco ball flashes into my mind.

    A good thing to have seen--thanks.