Treknobabble is a continuing series of columns written by uber-Trekkie Reed Farrington in anticipation of the upcoming J.J. Abrams Star Trek movie.
I used to be up-to-date with the latest technology. For instance, I remember when Star Trek: The Next Generation aired and the cable company started broadcasting in surround sound, I went out and bought a Denon 5.1 Dolby Surround Sound receiver and some extra speakers so that I could hear the ambient sound of the Enterprise-D through the side/rear speakers. But cell phones were in wide-use before I even got a cell phone, and I only got it because it was a gift. You would think I would have got one of the first flip-phones so that I could pretend I was Captain Kirk contacting the Enterprise. I don’t own a Blackberry Palm Device. If I had one, I could pretend it was a tricorder. (I hear there is software that will make a PDA sound like a tricorder.)
Anyway, this Treknobabble is not about technology and how getting older makes us seek comfort with what is old rather than what is new. I recently bought a digital camera to replace my malfunctioning film camera and I got a scanner as well. With the scanner, I can now easily accompany my Treknobabbles with relevant images. (Sean has a scanner and scanned my photos for Treknobabble #8: I was Not Spock.) So I thought I would use this Treknobabble to show some photos including photos pertaining to some past Treknobabbles as proof that not everything I write about is fabricated from my imagination.
I guess you can think of this as a “bottle” Treknobabble. In case you’re not familiar with Hollywood lingo, a bottle show on a television series is a show put together to save money by such methods as using clips from previous episodes and stitching these clips together in a plot with as few new shots to be filmed as necessary. “Shades of Grey” is the worst episode of The Next Generation and was such a show where Riker contracted a disease and dreamed scenes from past episodes. I think bottle shows can also be shows that are shot on existing sets or a small number of locations. For Star Trek, any shows which have plots confined to the Enterprise are considered bottle shows.
Actually, I’m not reusing any past written text. I guess I’m just saving time by not having to think too much, and allowing the images to stir memories. But I’ve already spent an hour setting this up including cropping images, so I’m not saving time at all.
Here’s the autographed photo I got of Gates McFadden (Dr. Crusher on The Next Generation). (See Treknobabble #17 – What Happens at a Convention, Part 3.) I think non-personalized autographed photos are considered to be more valuable than photos with just the signature. But I suspect a photo with just Ms. McFadden’s signature is worth less now than what I paid at the time at the height of The Next Generation’s popularity.
Here’s the autographed photo I got of Chase Masterson (Leeta the Dabo Girl from Quark’s Bar on Deep Space Nine). (See Treknobabble #16 – What Happens at a Convention, Part 2.) She’s second from the left in the pink bathing suit. You can’t tell from the photo how pretty she is. Admittedly, the photo isn’t very good, but I chose the photo that had her with other Star Trek characters like Worf because I didn’t want to seem like a creep by choosing a publicity photo of just her. Also I got the same photo for her to autograph to my friend Dave (see Treknobabble #8 – I Was Not Spock), and I wasn’t sure Dave knew who she was.
As I mentioned in Treknobabble #16, you can notice the gold ink splotches at her midriff and at former Miss America Vanessa Williams’ midriff. Not that anyone is interested, but this photo was a publicity shot taken during the 5th season episode, “Let He Who is Without Sin.”
For Henrik’s benefit, I’ve included this photo. He wanted to see a photo of me posing with my Klingon bat’leth (see Treknobabble #16 – What Happens at a Convention, Part 2), but I’ve provided the next best thing. This is a photo of my brother (see Treknobabble #2: First Contact (Not The Movie)) with my Klingon bat’leth. Surprisingly, my brother asked to dress up in a Next Generation burgundy costume and pose with the bat’leth for a photo. He had some Trekkie co-workers to whom he wanted to show the photo. Yeah, right. BTW, the “live long and prosper” that his hair is doing is unintentional.
This series of three photos were taken in the early morning hours in Hollywood on Hollywood Blvd. before the shops were open for business. I was in L.A. for an E3 Conference, and I decided to go for a stroll. And I happened to stumble across these images on the steel shutters that protect the storefronts. If you’re visiting and want to check out the images yourself, go to the corner of Cherokee and Hollywood Blvd. (I have no idea how often they replace those images, so don’t be mad at me if they’re not there anymore. These photos were taken in 2003, I believe. If you happen to live in L.A. and know of these images, please post a comment!)
In the first of the three photos, you might notice the Hollywood Renaissance Hotel in the background. That was where I was staying. Okay, you’re probably not going to believe the rest of this paragraph, but I sh*t you not. While I was out snapping these photos on Hollywood Blvd., both William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy (Captain Kirk and Mr. F*cking Spock, man!) were at my hotel filming a Priceline commercial! The mystical fates of the universe had conspired to keep me from meeting my heroes. Some of my co-workers got to see them filming the commercial… and they’re not Trekkies! I think it was then and there that I lost my faith in God. (I’m joking about losing my faith; I never believed in him (or her).)
Having missed an opportunity to meet my hero, this next autographed image of the Captain is all too appropriate. I joined William Shatner’s official fan club just so that I could get this autographed photo. It was the cheapest way to get his autograph. And I never thought I would ever meet him. (This was a year before the near alignment of the stars when I missed seeing him in person. See previous paragraph.)
Even though the photo came with an accompanying Certificate of Authenticity (CoA), I still think the fan club president signed Shatner’s name. As I was scanning the CoA, I was thinking to myself (as opposed to thinking to someone else), “Maybe it’s illegal to scan a CoA. Because what’s to prevent someone from taking that scan and printing off their own CoAs by masking the signatures and then copying the signatures with fresh ink! It’s illegal to photocopy money even if you’re not planning on passing it off, isn’t it?” (I’ll let Sean figure out the legal implications of posting a scanned CoA.) [If we get sued, you’ll pay for it, right? — Sean]
I didn’t think it would take me so long to write this Treknobabble. I’ll have to save my other photos for another time. I guess it’s only fitting that I end by commenting on the next Star Trek movie’s publicity poster which was released at the recent Comic-Con. I think it’s awesome. I like the simplicity. Trekkies might be upset that McCoy was replaced with Uhura in the image since Kirk-Spock-McCoy are the big three of The Original Series. But Uhura is gorgeous, so I can forgive this oversight.