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Project Progress
Sailor Moon: 7.69% (1/13)
Saturday Night Live: 15.3% (5/39)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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This week's notes include Saturday Night Live, Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, and all the Kirk/Spock!Prime fic I could get my grubby paws on.

WEEK TWENTY-FOUR )

Project Progress

Bond Movies: 100% (23/23)
Saturday Night Live: 10.5% (4/38)
Star Trek Televisual Canon: 22.5% (9/40)

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This week's notes include Saturday Night Live, James Bond, Now You See Me, and Superbad.

WEEK TWENTY-THREE )
Projects
Bond Movies: 95.6% (22/23)
Saturday Night Live: 7.8% (3/38)
Star Trek Televisual Canon: 35.2% (6/17)
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This week’s notes include Saturday Night Live, Star Trek, and James Bond.

WEEK TWENTY-TWO )

Project Progress
Bond Movies: 91.3% (21/23)
Star Trek Televisual Canon: 23.5% (4/17)
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This week’s notes include Once Upon a Time, Star Trek Into Darkness, and Saturday Night Live.

WEEK NINETEEN )

Project Progress
Bond Movies: 62.5% (15/24)
Star Trek Televisual Canon: 17.6% (3/17)
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loved Deela—she looks like a perkily demented Barbie and refuses to let Rael, a man she adores, shame her for taking pleasure in her work. Her work, of course, being to ensnare regular human men for breeding stock, but still. I like the way she talks and I like how she gives Kirk pretty much as good as she gets, except for when he does finally best her, because it's kind of silly and reminds you that this is the 1960s, where even the most badass of women are going to be put in their place at the end of the episode. (I'm still not over Kirk disrespecting that Romulan commander.) 

Also, is this really the first episode where the hint Kirk and Alien Babe of the Week did it is anvil-sized? I mean, the fact that Deela was unreachable because she was busy having sex with Kirk is a plot point
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A fondly remembered episode for most, as it includes one of the first interracial kisses on network television and Spock acting out of character. Having read Joan Marie Verba's Boldly Writing, I can only imagine the delighted fits of Spock fans. But I like the premise—decadent culture demands Dr. McCoy, Kirk and Spock refuse—and the execution is pretty good. It looks great, and Alexander is particularly affecting, as someone who, in trying to rise against the corrupt system, threatens to become like them. 
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I don’t know if it was because I was a little sun tired, but I really enjoyed this episode. The sci-fi aspect works to examine personal issues, especially Bones and Spock’s relationship; of course, I like anything that focuses on them. They’re downright hypnotizing at times. (“Stop it with the eyebrows!” I asked no one at one point.) And the hopeless situation is handled well, until, of course, it’s time to leap back to status quo with a vengeance and plenty of alcohol. “Does it mix well with scotch?” LUSHES THE LOT OF YOU. 

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A lovely title. There’s something about revisiting oft-referenced properties that makes for a little displacement. While it has the pat return to status quo every TOS episode requires (more reasons I suspect I’ll be a TNG woman), I really liked seeing Spock react to McCoy’s terminal illness, and how McCoy, discomfited, shrugged it off. In fact, I quite liked Natira and McCoy, especially because Natira is the next in a outlier string of straight-forward women into science officers. I can respect that. Of course, I’m still not sure if she and McCoy are still married or not, or if they ever were…

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An odd, cutrate episode, although the solution to the problem of imaginary bullets being deadly is pretty ingenious. (And whose footage, I have no doubt, is used in many Bones/Spock fanvids.)

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The idea of aliens saving cultures by seeding them along the stars is interesting, but holy crap, this episode is just awkward on all levels. Especially and obviously the race angle. Oh, and the fact that Kirk’s wife and her unborn child die, saving him the trouble of caring about them. Yurgh

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Despite its reputation, “Spock’s Brain” isn’t that bad. Although it is pretty bad—there’s a lot of plot holes and general illogic, as well as go go boots that are also garters. But we see McCoy, Kirk, and Scotty working together without Spock, and it’s an interesting, old-boys club dynamic with more punching. 

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As Star Trek teetered on the brink of cancellation (which is probably what inspired Roddenberry and company to take some swipes at television in “Bread & Circuses”), Roddenberry makes this episode essentially a pilot for a new series called Assignment: Earth, which wasn’t picked up. Seven and Roberta are fun—Roberta is erratic but smart and good-hearted, and Seven hangs out with a telepathic cat. That gets a bit undercut when we learn Isis, the cat, is a shapeshifter in a move that feels weirdly like it’s setting up a love triangle, but a quick glance at Memory Beta tells me there was no such love triangle. Of course, the show was never picked up…

All of this is to say that the Star Trek elements feel a bit shoehorned in there. Which they were. 

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“You bring this network’s ratings down and we’ll do a special on you!”

Star Trek explores a bit of alternate history when the crew encounters a world where the Roman Empire just kept developing. There’s a lot of interesting exploration of the Prime Directive—one of the villains of the episode exploits it brilliantly—and some still timely stuff about television and predicting some aspects of reality television. (I did think The Hunger Games a bit watching this.) Spock and McCoy spend the entire episode snarking at each other until the possibility of imminent death force them to confront their feelings; McCoy, in particular, gets some great lines about Spock and how hard it is for Spock to be, well, Spock. This and “The Ultimate Computer” were particularly strong for me. 

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An interesting exploration of impotence—firstly, the Federation makes Kirk test out a computer that could replace him; secondly, that computer is created by a man who peaked early in his career. Kirk explores this problem with a little more sensitivity than I expected. Watching Star Trek: The Original Series can be odd because I can sometimes feel I’m getting at pop culture backwards and it can be delightfully dated, but this episode still feels timely. Well, that and I feel like there’s higher production values here. 

And there’s a heaping handful of Spock and Bones snarking at each other, which I always appreciate. 

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An interesting villain gets undercut by weird race issues and a general degradation in the last twenty minutes—as soon as the American flag hits the screen, it’s pretty much over. 

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What starts out as a rather dark no-win scenario for the Enterprise turns into a crash course on humanity, as the only way to make the aliens give up the ship (and, you know, not kill everybody but Kirk, Spock, Bones, and Scotty) is to make them enjoy being human. This, of course, involves alcohol and Kirk failing to seduce a woman. Oh, that’s a great scene. 

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“Return to Tomorrow” offers an interesting moral dilemma—the aliens the crew meets want bodies in order to build bodies, but one of them wants to just steal the organic bodies. The transference scenes were fun (Spock laughing! Flirting! Being awful to people!) and the story is actually interesting. As much as I don’t care for procedurals anymore (I’m just so burnt out on them), Star Trek: The Original Series is very much a procedural. Although I do prefer to think of it as a short story anthology. 

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For all the play Spock and Kirk’s friendship rightfully gets, “The Immunity Syndrome” gives us a look at the more interesting friendship between McCoy and Spock, as the two cover their fondness and respect for each other beneath bickering, snark, and, in McCoy’s case, good old-fashioned space racism. D’awww, boys.
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I apologize for my absence on LiveJournal. College has been getting crazy, but my involvement in a play has ended, so I have a little more time for fannish interests and such.

Also, the Star Trek DVD hits next Tuesday. Let it never be said that my priorities are out of order.

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Eralk Fang

July 2016

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