Today I was SO worn out, I did something I can hardly believe...  With very few exceptions, I have not watched STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION since it was first-run (24 YEARS ago).  So far today, I have just watched the first 14 episodes in a row!!!
    You know what's funny?  The show is actually fun to watch in a sort-of tacky way.  Some of the character quirks are amusing, before they became really annoying.  And I'm reminded of some of the early relationship dynamics, which, it seems to me, got totally screwed over the longer the show was on the air.
    Like-- it's obvious Picard & Beverly are attracted to each other.  WHY did they spend most of the run not having this go anywhere?  Then there's Will Riker & Deanna Troi, who the moment they meet are like a really bad, awkward retread of Will Decker & Ilia.  They're so stiff at first it's unbelieveable.  I think all the acting got 10 times better after the 2-hour pilot.  Anyway, the story that introduces Lwaxana was a hoot, and also showed that, despite whatever the hell the problem is, Will & Deanna do somehow care for each other deeply.  So... WHY didn't it EVER go anywhere (until the 2nd feature film?).  Both Wesley & Data are far less annoying here than they later became.
    Strange but true:  while I saw the show from the first episode (and taped every single one of them), my Mom never saw it until somewhere in the 3rd or 4th season.  And when she did, she got HOOKED, big-time.  She started watching it every time it was on.  Since they got to running the stories twice a week, that means, while I saw each story ONCE, she saw each one FOUR TIMES!!!
    At some point, she got around to seeing reruns of the 1st season.  I always remember walking thru the dining room, where she spent most of her time sitting watching the small tv on the table, and noting she was watching the 2-hour pilot.  And she looked at me and says, "This is the DUMBEST story I've ever seen!"  That's after having seen dozens (maybe a hundred or more) later ones.
    I've noted I have a lot more tolerance for "bad" films when I can't sleep, and that may account for my being able to sit thru so much of this today.
    It's a shame that my favorite woman on the show's 1st season, Tasha, got killed off suddenly when Denise Crosby announced she wanted to quit the show.  She may not have been my favorite kind of woman as far as face or personality, but I have a feeling I might have gotten along with her.  By the episode "Angel One", she seemed to be loosening up a lot.  I can't understand the complaint about her "not having enough to do".  Her movie career sure didn't take off...  (Doesn't that seem to be a running thing in the 80's and beyond?  People quitting successful shows and then regretting it?)
    A few times early-on, I found myself thinking how this might have gone if Paramount hadn't been so cheap.  After the tremendous success of STAR TREK IV, the push was on to finally do a new tv series.  But because the actors' salaries kept getting bigger and bigger by then, the decision was made, purely monetary, to do an entirely new series, with CHEAPER actors.
    What stands out is the thought that the "cruise ship" version of the Enterprise was said to be a brand-new ship fresh out of dry dock (just like at the end of ST4).  And the "battle bridge" seen in Ep.1 was clearly the bridge from the movies.
    I liked how about 10 episodes in, you finally saw a rectangular hallway (like on the old show).  Those octogonal vertical halls from the movies get on my nerves.

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I understand that they wanted Shattner to read lines for a few of the episodes, and as a result, they sent an audio tape and scripts to him on the road... he recorded the lines for a few of the shows while sitting in an unused gasstation bathroom stall, just to get some privacy and to control the ambient noise... and he claims that if you listen to some of the cartoon, you can hear the reverb on his voice from the tile walls!

Talk about being produced on the cheap!


ClarkKent_DC said:

The Baron said:

Maybe they had trouble getting the rights to the music - I was listening to one of the commentary tracks for the McGann Doctor Who telemovie last night and they said they had to pay extra to use the Grainer theme.


Maybe they had no trouble getting the rights to the music, but didn't want to spend what it cost to get those rights. This is a Saturday morning animated TV show we're talking about; everything about those things was done on the cheap.

Fred and  Daphnie weren't quite right because NOBODY could have hair that perfect!


By the way, I had heard that the original character designs for Scobby-Doo were done by Jack Kirby. Can anyone confirm this?

I dunno... it seems to me for most of the 60's, 70's & 80's, ALEX TOTH was the king of Hanna-Barbera character designs.


Which made it quite a surprise when I found out Toth designed Thundarr The Barbarian, Ookla The Mok, and Princess Ariel. (On THUNDARR, Jack Kirby designed EVERYTHING ELSE!!!) Did Toth have a falling-out with H-B that week?


I keep trying to picture how SPACE GHOST might have been if Jack Kirby had worked on it instead of Toth...! (But then try imagining Kirby on LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES instead of John Forte.)

Shatner delivering his lines in a rest-stop toilet supplied my laugh of the day.


Cheers.  :-)

THUNDARR was Ruby-Spears, not Hanna-Barbera.

That's what I mean.  Toth worked for HB.  What was he doing designing characters for RS ???  (That's why I asked, did he have a falling-out with them for a week or so?)

Ruby and Spears had previously worked at H-B.

I've sung the praises of ST:TAS before. I even took a poll on Ye Olde Boarde concerning whether or not it was deemed in continuity. (It was.) As far as it being the best Saturday morning cartoon on the air at the time, believe me, it was. I was there. At least it didn't preach at kids the way virtually all other cartoons of the era did. Kids hate to be preached at. Then the show was supposedly deemed "too cerebral." The show itself and the Alan Dean Foster Star Trek Log adaptations complement each other nicely.


Regarding the voicing, a big problem is that the actors were gernerally not in the same studio at the same time. Their respective lines were recorded separately, then spliced together later, which is why the performances are so stilted. The parents of the kid who voiced young Spock in "Yesteryear" got ahold of the script, recorded their son reading the lines, and sent it in as an audition tape. He was hired, but instead of re-recording the lines in a professional sound studio, they simply used the audition tape.


Regarding the limited animation style, note how often, for example, one or another character holds the comunicator directly in front of his mouth while using it. That was a trick so they didn't have to animate the mouth and synch it up to the actors' delivery of the lines.

"Ruby and Spears had previously worked at H-B."


I guess Alex Toth was moonlighting when he did that job.

Where can I go to watch these annimated series adventures/voyages?

I was in college at this time or certainly in High School and not watching saturday morning cartoons.

I read they're on DVD now.

Yes, Star Trek the Animated Series is on DVD. I know because I have it! :-)

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