Tuesday, 16 March 2021

30 Days of Star Trek Challenge - TOS Edition!

30 Days of Star Trek Challenge - TOS Edition

I've been making my way through the Original Series. I've never actually seen them all through, in the right order, so it's been fun! 

Here's a 30 Day Fandom Challenge I cobbled together in celebration. :)



The Trouble With Tribbles

#01. First Encounter With This Fandom 

It was literally so long ago I can't remember it! My first proper memory of it is watching The Trouble with Tribbles in the after school slot with my grandad, so that just makes it extra loveable and nostalgic for me.



AOS

#02. TOS or AOS?

TOS. Always, forever, no competition. AOS has its good points but, overall, it has too much stuff I really dislike in it. 

(Destruction of Vulcan - like, wtf? Spock/Uhura - where did that even come from?? Kirk the Mega Thot - I mean, sure, he was a womanizer but at the Academy he was said to be, quote, "a stack of books with legs." How did we get from there to AOS' Kirk the Rebel???)

https://creativitycache.tumblr.com/post/173662519293/when-you-go-through-the-tos-tag-and-find-nothing



Deneva

#03. Favourite Location 

The colony of Deneva from Operation - Annihilate! AKA, TRW Space and Defense Park in California. Being a New Town baby I have an unironic appreciation for the clean lines and retro-futuristic look of functionalist architecture. <3



Kirk vs Gorn

#04. Captain's Log

Rewatching the show is a reminder that, for all the parodies that followed, Kirk was actually a decent captain. Most of the time, at any rate.

My favourite Kirk moment will always be the iconic fight with Gorn though. It's so ridiculous.




#05. Fanvid

Please Don't Leave Me. I love the editing - it never fails to make me smile.



Accidental Trek Cosplay

#06. Cosplay

I tend to keep my nerdiness lowkey when it comes to outfits - Bajoran ear cuffs for the win! So of course I love the 'Accidental Star Trek Cosplay' blog, cataloguing all those moments where people unknowingly went looking to Starfleet for outfit inspo. 

(As my post on Trek Fashion points out, this is rarely a wise move...)



Uhura

#07. Sorry, Neither

Uhura is badass. She can sing, she can kick butt, and - according to the character datafiles drawn up for the 2009 movie - she was proficient in 83% of official Federation languages and regional dialects 5 years before TOS even began.



Mudd's Women

#08. Favourite S1 Episode

Mudd's Women. 

Yeah, it's kind of dumb, but I have a soft spot for it all the same. Even with the hamfisted way it's presented, I'm all for the message that there is so much more to people than what they look like. Plus, it's just hard not to enjoy a bit of Harry Mudd. 



Dr McCoy

#09. I'm a Doctor, not a...

Bricklayer!

The Devil in the Dark is Trek at its corniest. The monster of the week has all the scare factor of a bundle of Dr. Who bubble wrap, the diversity message is hammered home with all the subtlety of a battering ram, and McCoy really gets his hands dirty. Just a typical day in Starfleet.



Spock / Kirk

#10. Canon Ship


Seriously, its pseudo-canon status was strong enough for fans to feel like they weren't even wandering off script when they started churning out slash zines in the 1970s. So Kirk and Spock basically paved the way for modern western media fandom, just by the sheer power of their homoerotic subtext. Quite a legacy!

Companion Zine
Companion #1 zine, 1978.



McChekov

#11. Fanfic Rec

Hold Hands and Play Nice - BirdyMarie and Kedreeva.
105,000 words; rated E.

McCoy and Chekov are forced to wait out a storm on an away mission. Naturally this leads to fake dating to keep the locals from homicide. Cue secret mutual pining and angsty misunderstandings. It could be the plot of any sci-fi fic ever but it's just done so well. 

(This is AOS fic because nobody seems to write the ship at all for TOS. Why does fandom refuse to pander to me??)



Metamorphosis

#12. Worst Episode

Metamorphosis. 

There are sillier, cheaper, and more offensive episodes, for sure. But none of them quite rub me up the wrong way like this one. Just, ugh. We have a strong female character who, of course, is so desperate for a bloke she is happy to be subsumed into an electronic life force so she can experience a man's touch. The man being one who was repulsed by the idea of the love of an electronic life force anyway. 

At the end of the episode she's trapped on the planet with Cochran for the rest of her life. Meanwhile her time sensitive negotiations to avert war are all forgotten because the Fleet will just replace her as though she never existed.

Did I say ugh?



Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home

#13. Favourite Movie

I'm not really a great fan of any of them - if we get to ditch parts of canon, they're the first on my chopping block. Still, if I've got to pick one, it's going to be Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home. It has the same charm as Superman III in that it's so badly 80s it swings right around to being kind of almost good.



Spock

#14. Favourite Character

Spock. 

Obviously. 



Horned Dog

#15. Best Costume

Alfa 177 Canine's little horned dog costume. Just look at how unimpressed he is!



Tricorder

#16. Favourite Prop

The tricorder rocks. And makes all the guys look like they're carrying a rather modish man-bag on away missions.



Kevin Riley

#17. Best Minor Character

Kevin Riley.

Terrible singing aside, Kevin is a pretty intriguing character. He's one of the survivors of the Tarsus IV famine and massacre, along with Kirk, and is competent enough to rotate between bridge navigation and communications duty. In the novels he ends up an ambassador, but not before becoming Sarek's protégé... Not bad for a character who only ever appeared in two episodes.



Amok Time

#18. Favourite S2 Episode

Amok Time. 

So much of Star Trek mythos, and wider fandom culture, stems directly from this episode. It introduces the Ta'al (Vulcan salute), unleashes the concept of Pon Farr (Vulcan mating heat) upon an unsuspecting world - fanfiction would never again be the same! -  and generally cements the fact that Kirk and Spock's friendship is of the 'till death do us part kind.



Chekov

#19. In Russia...

Sulu: Once in Siberia there was a meteor so great that it flattened whole forests and was felt as far -
Kirk: If I'd wanted a Russian history lesson I'd have brought along Mr. Chekov.

Aside from being the spiritual precursor to those Goodness Gracious Me 'everything is Indian' sketches, Chekov is always good for comic relief in TOS. Of all the character changes in AOS, Chekov's was one of the best imo. I liked the idea of making him the teenage whizz kid and playing up to the whole 'I'm young and therefore know everything' vibe he always had going on.



Spock and McCoy

#20. Fanon Ship

Spock/Bones. ♡

Much as a I love Spock/Kirk as a fandom monolith, when it comes to the actual show this is the ship that really appeals to me. They spend all their time bickering like an old married couple and generally trying to get each other's attention, and it's McCoy Spock chooses to host his katra in Star Trek III.

Beyond that it is a ship made for some of my all time favourite tropes, especially cultural misunderstandings. I will never not be charmed by fic where Spock is like, surely we *have* been dating? My mother informs me demonstrably false claims of dislike are a customary aspect of Terran courtship ritual. While McCoy gapes and flusters and finally just throws his hands in the air and goes with the flow!

Spones



Sarek and Amanda

#21. Favourite Ambassador

Sarek and Amanda are so cute together, even if Sarek is a jerk to absolutely everybody else. They should have had their own spin-off sitcom.



Star Trek Discovery Enterprise

#22. Back To The Future

AKA, thoughts on prequel retconning and the like...

If you described Discovery to me I'd probably say it sounds terrible and that Michael is the Mary Sue to end all Mary Sues. But, watching it, I loved every second! I liked their introduction of Pike and the TOS uniforms, and I'm even down with the Spock storyline to a large extent. 

It does stretch credulity to breaking point though that Kirk, if not other crewmembers, is not well aware of Spock's family background because of it. (Everything in the military is classified. It doesn't stop gossip spreading like wildfire.) Also, it makes TOS' focus on Spock's 'otherness' kind of hard to understand when the 'Fleet already has serving Denobulans, Kelpiens, Tellarites, Saurians, genetically engineered Klingons, etc, etc.




#23. Favourite Parody

How can you even begin to compete with 1987's Star Trekkin'? The stop motion video was made by a team of art grads in under a week; according to Wiki they had just hours to go from final edit to its first broadcast on Top of the Pops.



Scotty

#24. Beam Me Up, Scotty

There are no words for how much I love that Scotty's dress uniform incorporates the kilt. I'd never registered it before this rewatch but it fits his character so perfectly - he's more Scots than the Saltire! 



Sulu

#25. Mr. Sulu

Legend.



Mattel Uhura Barbie

#26. Favourite Merchandise

The Uhura Barbie is amazing - even if Mattel did cheap out and fail to articulate her ankles.



Charlie X

#27. Best Villain

There are bigger and better - but the whole idea behind Charlie X really creeps me out. Just imagine how it could be shot today, with the crew's slow realisation of this monster in their midst. And all the time Charlie just doesn't really get that what he's doing is even wrong.



All Our Yesterdays

#28. Favourite S3 Episode

All Our Yesterdays. 

Spock has to deal with his brain trying to revert to Vulcan's dark ages - plus there's that scene with McCoy.





Mirror, Mirror

#29. Honourably Mention An Episode

Mirror, Mirror.

Another fandom classic. Seriously, would fic fandom as we know it even exist without the mirror universe!? 



Without followers, evil cannot spread.

#30. Favourite Quote

"Without followers, evil cannot spread."



30 Day Fandom Challenge - Star Trek: The Original Series

#01. First Encounter With This Fandom
#02. TOS or AOS?
#03. Favourite Location
#04. Captain's Log
#05. Childhood
#06. Cosplay
#07. Sorry, Neither
#08. Favourite S1 Episode
#09. I'm a Doctor, Not...
#10. Canon Ship
#11. Fanfic Rec
#12. Worst Episode
#13. Favourite Movie
#14. Favourite Character
#15. Best Costume
#16. Favourite Prop
#17. Best Minor Character
#18. Favourite S2 Episode
#19. In Russia...
#20. Fanon Ship
#21. Favourite Ambassador
#22. Back To The Future
#23. Favourite Parody
#24. Beam Me Up, Scotty
#25. Mr. Sulu
#26. Favourite Merchandise
#27. Best Villain
#28. Favourite S3 Episode
#29. Honourably Mention an Episode
#30. Favourite Quote



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