Monday, August 25, 2014

A Litany of Star Trek

Life without Star Trek is illogical. Fortunately, reruns continue to air, with a sprinkling of movies appearing from time to time. We may never see the entire future as shown through this sci-fi adventure. However, our communicators are in the form of cell phones; who knows what other products await in this lifetime?
From nearly any television show or movie about Star Trek, one hears Captain Kirk demanding, "Give it all she's got, Scotty!" or "Status, Mr. Sulu." Even with four different series (Star Trek, Star Trek - The Next Generation, Star Trek - Deep Space Nine, and Star Trek - Voyager) and an assortment of movies, I crave more stories, even re-told ones, about my favorite characters and their adventures around the universe. As an avid reader, I have many books to feed my need. My favorite science fiction collection of short stories is Star Trek ® The Classic Episodes 3, which put into print twenty-four shows comprising the final season.

Adapted by James Blish with J. A. Lawrence, and printed by Bantam Books in 1991, this collection consists of the best of the series. By this time, a generation knew the characters on Star Trek, including snatches of their family history, what their childhood was like, how their cities and planets had evolved since the 20th century, and which planets and people were friend, foe, or neutral. It restored a drive for scientific study, as the idea of so many marvelous things being taken for granted in Kirk's time touched a yearning within the souls of many.
My favorite story is "For the World is Hollow and I Have Touched the Sky", written by Rik Vollaerts. Primarily centered on Dr. "Bones" McCoy, the story begins with the discovery by the doctor that he's got a rare terminal blood disease, Xenopolycythemia, and has less than a year to live. When one reviews all the medical technology in Dr. McCoy's Sick Bay and recalls the many things he's done to save lives in prior episodes, it is a surprise that he accepts certain death rather than racing right for the lab to create a cure.
Setting the Stage
A barrage of archaic missiles (over 10,000 years old) were fired at the Enterprise and destroyed. Kirk and Spock discover an asteroid, which is really a powered spaceship with no apparent life forms. Bound on a collision course with an inhabited planet, Daran V, it must be stopped. Beaming to the internal surface of the ship, Kirk, Spock, and McCoy find plants, mountains, rubble, and cylinders. Not showing signs of life, they pass by, but are attacked by men swarming out to overtake the Enterprise officers. Oh, dear! I forgot to mention the beautiful woman. Star Trek taught us that different shapes, colors, and characteristics of life forms could be beautiful, even as those which are most familiar can be evil and frightening. Natira, the High Priestess of the People of Yonada, saved the crew from further injury or death by stopping the trouncing. However, McCoy is hurt very badly when Kirk assures Natira they come in friendship and the three crewmembers are felled by an intense charge of electricity.
Tell Me, For I Want to Know
Placed in confinement, the men are approached by an older man who asks to be told of the outside, as he is ignorant. He tells them how he climbed the mountains years ago, even though forbidden. In response to why it's forbidden to climb the mountains, he replies he isn't sure, but he knows things aren't as they've been told, "for the world is hollow and I have touched the sky."(page 258) The man is killed by some force for revealing what he knows.
Natira has guards gently remove the man. She appears to be quite taken with McCoy, who gets some good-natured ribbing from Spock and Kirk. She tells them the Oracle wants them treated like honored guests, and gives Spock and Kirk permission to meet the People while she stays with McCoy.
Love can Strike at Any Time
Natira's proposal to McCoy is no surprise. He tells her of his fatal disease; she tells him of the future, when they will reach a new home. Kirk and Spock, enter the room of the Oracle (Spock memorized the code from earlier). Natira comes in shortly thereafter to request the Oracle's permission to marry McCoy. The Oracle has no human form, but seems to know what is going on. He approves if McCoy becomes one of the people, which includes getting an obedience insert in his head. Discovered in the room, Kirk and Spock are sentenced to death. McCoy, however, has thought about his lonely life, and tells Natira he will marry her if she lets his friends return to the Enterprise. He assures Kirk of the love he's found, and the happiness in knowing his last days won't be alone.
Sometimes knowledge can almost kill you
McCoy is shown the Book of the People, which can only be opened and read when their final destination is reached. Contacting the Enterprise to make them aware of its existence, he is nearly killed for being disobedient. Returning to Yonada, Kirk and Spock materialize in Natira's room, where she is holding the dying McCoy. Spock removes McCoy's insert, and when the Oracle nearly destroys Natira after she demands to know the truth, McCoy removes hers.
Loyalty to Who You Are


Choices are difficult to make at the best of times. Natira felt duty-bound to stay with her people till the end of the journey. Spock, after repairing and recalibrating the ship, recorded the entire history of the Fabrini people, who built the traveling asteroid and sent some of their best people on a voyage across space to survival. McCoy, having changed Natira's life forever, returned to the Enterprise with Kirk and Spock, where Spock found the cure for McCoy's disease on the history scan, created the formula, and saved McCoy's life. Kirk, glad to have his dear friend and comrade back again, hinted to McCoy that he'd see the Enterprise in their vicinity when Yonada and Natira reached their destination.

32 comments:

  1. I love this...but what do you ever write that I don't!?

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    1. Thanks so much! I am so glad to be such an avid reader:)

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  2. I've never seen it. I know it's not a show I would like - even though I am a total nerd girl. My husband likes it, though.

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    1. Each series was different. I did not care for the original "Enterprise" with Scott Bakula, and it took some time to warm up to Captain Jon Luke Picard.

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  3. My husband had me sit down a watch a Star Trek movie recently. It was hilarious. I don't know why I never got into the show. This post has me intrigued. I'm like what is the Book of the People? Need to find old episodes and watch! LOL!

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    1. Thanks, Cam. There are a number of reruns on late at night.

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  4. I don't think I've ever watched a full episode of Star Trek but my husband really likes it. I might have to sit down and watch a few full episodes with him!

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    1. Thanks, Amber. I hope you choose one of the more interesting ones.

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  5. Thanks for sharing. I actually recently watched the entire series of Star Trek on Netflix.

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    1. That's great, Mary! Thanks for dropping by.

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  6. I haven't seen an episode in a long time. I've only seen the new movies.

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  7. I haven't watched Star Trek in a while. The original series will always be the best.

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  8. I've actually never watched it! My husband did when he was growing up.

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  9. I remember my brothers used to watch it when we were little. I never really got into it for whatever reason.

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  10. My mom and dad loved this show. I wasn't into them much, but all that changed after seeing the last Star Trek movie. I never even knew all those sayings came form the show. I guess it's better late than never to become a fan.

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  11. I have never seen it, but I remember going to a friends house when I was little. His dad was the biggest Star Trek fan and their entire (and I mean ENTIRE!) house was plastered with Star Trek memorabilia!

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  12. We have never been Star Trek fans, but it seems to have a great following. Loved reading your post.

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  13. I'm not a sci fi girl, so Star Trek is not one I've seen yet. But this was a great read!

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  14. I am not big into Sci Fi, but I remember watching Star Trek. I like it

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  15. I love Star Trek. I'm not a big fan of sci-fi, but I'm a huge fan of William Shatner. His delivery was so entertaining. "Spock! We've... got to get there. They... need us...now!" Classic.

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  16. I never really got into Star Trek, either. But I do recall watching it every once in a while. There are sooo many trekkies out there :)

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  17. I have watched all the versions of Star Trek they made. My son used to fall asleep as a baby in his swing watching Next Generation. My favorite would be Deep Space Nine.

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  18. Can you believe I have never watched Star Trek either? I honestly do not know much about it at all!

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  19. So much history behind this amazing show/movie series! Thanks for a great summary

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  20. I never really watched Star Trek, but know a lot of people who had. Thanks for sharing all this information. :)

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  21. My father forced me to watch Star Trek as a kid. We had only 1 tv for the longest time and that was his show to watch. I can't really get in to it now.

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  22. I never really watch Star Trek. I have seen the newer movies that have come out though.

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  23. I used to stay up and watch Star Trek as a kid. I haven't seen it in forever.

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  24. I love the enthusiasm that the diehard fans have for it. I have seen a show here or there and always thought they were good.

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  25. I remember seeing a star trek movie with a boyfriend forever ago. does that count? lol

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  26. I have never really gotten into Starr Trek. I don't think I've really given it a chance though.

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  27. I never really got into Star Trek. Maybe I should try now!
    ~Amanda

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