Monday, September 7, 2015

Short Treks Season Animated 2.2

Air Date: September 28, 1974
Mom Title: “McCoy Infected a Planet?”

Considering that the Big Three tell each other if they’ve heard of a planet before, it’s startling that Bones doesn’t mention he’d been to Dramia.  Then again, this is a tight lipped outing.  The Federation gave Jim absolutely no warning that they had signed off on an arrest warrant for his chief medical officer.  I smell an ambassador’s involvement.

Holy Cow!  There’s text on a screen in this episode that doesn’t look like a Polaroid of a book!  Technology advances.

The multiple ship travel scenes padsout the narrative. That’s a bad sign in the already short Animated world.

Still, with this crew, there are always great character moments.

Kirk and Spock share the duty for solving the mystery this time around, with Bones working out the implementation. In a showing of conservation of disease, it’s Spock who’s immune to this week’s illness.

 Despite risks to his safety and career, McCoy answers the call with what we learn is the most important part of his catch phrase.

“I’m a Doctor.”

Interesting Starfleet protocol information:
General Order Six states when all life aboard a ship is dead, it blows up.

Man, does every General Order have to do with death or destruction?  With all the derelict sister ships the Enterprise has met on her journeys, this must be more of a guideline.

“How Sharper Than a Serpents Tooth:
Air Date: November 5, 1974
Mom Title: “Museum of Destroyed Civilizations”

It’s an alien with a green glow that used to be an earth god with a giant ship and advanced probes.  To borrow from Richar Pryor, “Get him, he’s all of them!”

Luckily, Ensign Walking Bear knows his own background and recognizes Kukulkan. Actually, considering he’s a Comanche and Kukulkan is a Mayan god, it’s lucky Ensign Walking Bear is confused.

Yet another old, lonely Andromedan posing as a deity promises a safe and content existence in his zoo, waited on by his machines, if the humans will worship him again.

Kirk fires off one more, “We don’t need gods” speech. 

Considering how much of this episode is a rehash of old ideas, you’d think they’d have made less blatant mistakes?

Kukulkan’s existence explains why ALL cultures have legends of dragons?

I think Walking Bear isn’t the only confused one.

Perhaps the animators and writers were too busy going nuts with creatures and locations that could never be done in live action that they stopped paying attention.

The plan of releasing a menagerie full of killer beasts from across the galaxy into the room that Kirk and his crew occupied was an insane plan even by his normally wacky standards.

I’m also not entirely sure how they climbed those smooth obelisks as part of the plan either

My favorite line in this outing was the excessively Ghostbusters like: “Listen, we’re being watched.”

However, a close second is Spock’s jab at his human crewmates learning about yet another alien being worshipped by, and teaching, their ancestors:

"Vulcan was visited by alien beings. They left much wiser."

The Counter Clock Incident
Air Date: October 12, 1974
Mom Title: “Crew Gets Younger”

The series signs off with a giant pile of references, as the Enterprise heads back to Babel.  Before it gets there, we see a flower from Leonard James Akaar’s world, and the supernovas from Gem’s and Zarabeth’s worlds. 

It’s a shame they didn’t follow the occasional convention of using Gene Roddenberry’s likeness for the first captain of the Enterprise, Robert April. Heck, they could have used his voice too!

Before leaving the small screen, Star Trek shatters all speed records.  The Enterprise herself makes it up to Warp 22, and Karla Five’s ship hits Warp 36.  Take that Next Generation “Warp 10 is the maximum” people.

There’s an on screen admission of the “Universal Language” everyone speaks, explaining why most of the aliens spoke English for the last five seasons.

I wonder if the reverse aging world of Arret inspired the life cycle of Orkans or at least the Red Dwarf episode “Backwards.”

“Star Trek Babies” would have been a cute idea for another Saturday morning show, although given Vulcan life spans, there’s no reason Spock should have been younger than April.  Overall it was kind of a clunky finale.  If you want more expertly constructed adventures of Captain Robert April, his wife Doctor Sarah, and a young Jim Kirk, you’d be much better off with Diane Carey’s books:
Final Frontier and
Best Destiny.

I realize the short animated episode air time meant falling back on the transporter regularly to repair any physical changes was their only option. However, the way they presented it in this story, not as undoing a change but as reverting to a past setting, anyone who beams during their life could be de-aged at the push of a button.  HOLY CRAP!

…and that’s the end of the original crew “boldly going where no man has gone before” on the small screen.

Luckily for everyone involved, the success of Star Wars would push the floundering Phase II series plans in the direction of Motion Pictures.

On the big screen is where we’d finally see the culmination of the Extra Galactic Energy Being Invasion plot that ran through three live action and two animated seasons, without even the writers and cast knowing about it.

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