Friday, November 28, 2008

1976 Mad Star Trek Musical

Shatner and Nimoy have a laugh at their expense during filming.

In October of 1976 I found this issue of Mad which featured an awesome Trek spoof, "Keep On Trekin': The mad Star Trek Musical," one of many Trek parodies they did. I have just about all of them, from the first onward, and I'll feature them all sooner or later. But this one had an awesome cover painting, one of my favorites. As always, click on the images to view the Angry-God-Apollo-Sized scans. Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

1977 Starlog article: Animating Star Trek

(Click on any image to enlarge.)
I collected Starlog for many years beginning with their first issue, and for a long time it was my main source of sci-fi and Star Trek news. Below is scanned in the article from the June 1977 issue #6, about the making of the animated series. For a couple of years the cartoon was the only source of new Trek and it was exciting to have, and this article written 4 years later came out while it was still very fresh in our memories. Enjoy!

Note the ad for the functioning prop replicas even back then. Master Replicas wasn't the first to offer them!

The extended adaptations by Alan Dean Foster were awesome to read. Whereas James Blish condensed the tv show hour-long scripts to feature 8 or more stories per book, Foster added to the half-hour scripts and enhanced the stories greatly. I have fond memories of these books, and especially this first one. How excited I was to find it and soak it in!

Recently, the L.A. Times published the photo below that shows the Big Three taping their lines for the animated show. It was a rarity when any of them could actually get together to tape at the same time.

Besides being together again, they're just happy to be working!

Monday, November 24, 2008

ST:TMP Teaser Poster

And there it is, the first glimpse, however inaccurate, of the new Enterprise that we ever got!

This I scanned in from the back of a comic book from the summer of 1979. It was an exciting time for a Trek fan like me! I was looking forward to the movie more than Christmas itself, and it was the best present I could or would get.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Castle of Frankenstein #11: Star Trek cover story

(Click on images to view larger.)

I know, I've been posting material about the production of the first Star Trek movie for awhile, but that doesn't mean I've abandoned the original series material, no sir. I'll keep posting it as long as I have something to post in that area, and add in the movie stuff also.

"Castle of Frankenstein" was a monster magazine that respected it's readers and didn't talk down to them, or load every single article with horrible puns and one-sentence paragraphs like Famous Monsters. The writeups were intelligent, and the magazine dense with material that made reading it like mining a vein of horror gold. (I also dug out a nugget to feature over on my movie ad blog "Held Over!") It was monsters for more mature fans that even showed the occasional bit of partial nudity that might be in a movie. Of course, the kids like me ate that up too.

So this issue from 1967 that covered both my love for monsters and Star Trek was a double-whammy that knocked me for a loop! I was late coming to the show, and found this in a second-hand bookstore in the early 70's, but it was new to me and exciting as all get out. Enjoy this scan of my issue, and try to imagine, if you can, what it was like to read an article about the show when it was still in production. The excitement I felt at seeing anything related to the show back then was unmatched by anything else in my life at the time. It was truly special, and hard to explain to someone that has never felt it.

Since the mag is about monsters, the photos pretty much focus on that aspect of the show. But the article revealed at lot about the show that I didn't know at the time, and I eagerly devoured it!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

1979 Saturday Evening Post article: "The New Voyage of Starship Enterprise"

When it came to articles in various kinds of magazines concerning Star Trek, I had an eagle eye and could spot them a mile away. This was probably the first time I had ever picked up a copy or even looked at the Saturday Evening Post, but I didn't miss when they ran this pre-release article on Trek's rebirth.

Of course, much of the optimism over the new movie faded after it's release... but we won't talk about that now... these posts are to recapture the building excitement that fans felt during that heady time!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Parade Magazine ST:TMP cover article

From Ye Olde Collection Cabinets this time, is the ST:TMP cover story from the December 10, 1978 Parade magazine. This probably did more to make people aware of the coming movie than anything else did or could have because it went into so many households. You probably saw it and saved it, or at least remember it, if you lived during that time.
(Click on images to enlarge.)

Although "The Star" got the scoop on the first color pics in the article posted last time, this was the first major mainstream publication to do a cover feature with color photos on the new movie. I had seen a preview in Friday's edition of the Ft. Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel, that tipped me off to what was coming in the Sunday edition. So, prepared with that foreknowledge, I made a trip down to the drugstore on Sunday morning, December 10, 1978 to get several copies.

This was the most exciting thing that had come out about the movie so far, and I was thrilled beyond words. The fact that this was an event is demonstrated by the press coverage on the filming a full year away from the release. Below is the article that was inside. If you saw this years ago, I hope it brings back some memories. Some of that excitement is coming back now as the characters from the show are finding new life in the JJ Abrams movie, the trailer for which is now out and making waves, the like of which hasn't been seen since the days leading up to the unveiling of Star Trek: The Motion Picture.

If you are a regular reader of this blog you know that I had a constant conflict with my stepfather over my Star Trek obsession. As a grade-school dropout who worked in road construction, he resented my more cerebral interests and love of books, and science fiction. But Star Trek was the focus of his scorn since it was my one true overarching hobby. I had to keep my collection items out of sight lest they become targets for destruction, as he knew that was the one area I was most vulnerable to harm in. A belting I could take, but threaten my books or magazines and you had me by the short hairs.

Once I made the trip to the drugstore that morning, I tossed the rest of the papers and smuggled the two copies of Parade magazine in under cover. He was reading the same paper that had been delivered to the house, and I could see the Parade cover plainly sitting in the "read" pile. I knew he was expecting me to salivate over it, and eagerly hope to secretly claim it when he was through with it. But having my copies already, that particular bit of tension was non-existent and I coolly walked on by. A little later I found that Parade magazine in the trash (although the rest of the paper was still on the living room sofa) with a pile of wet coffee grounds on top of it for good measure; an act that no doubt brought him satisfaction at my imagined disappointment.

Although saddened by the fact that someone who should have been on my side as a father acted like an enemy even in such small matters, I was inwardly chuckling because I had outfoxed him again. Instead of taking the opportunity to make me happy by bringing the article to my attention, he took the opportunity to try to make me unhappy. But I got it in spite of him, and he added yet another brick to the wall between us that would remain till he passed away years later.

Star Trek truly was the bright spot in an otherwise dark home life as I went through my teen years, and many of my good memories revolve around it.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

First color photos from ST:TMP

It was a good Thanksgiving that year... in part because I was so thankful and happy to see these first color photos released, in the November 28th, 1978 edition of The Star tabloid. But some fans couldn't wait for official releases, apparently... according to the article below, even back then those pesky Trekkers were a security problem!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Enterprise To Fly Again

The newspapers had been running articles about Star Trek's return since 1975, but not until the press conference held in summer of 1978 with Robert Wise, Roddenberry and the cast did it become real. They were filming it, finally! The excitement starts to build...

And then... it hit! On August 12, 1978, the very first photo was released to newspapers. Below is a scan of my clipped copy from the Ft. Lauderdale newspaper. The first new image of Kirk, Spock and McCoy in 10 years! My fingers were trembling with excitement as I cut it out and put it in my scrapbook.

Shortly afterward, on August 25th, a second exciting photo appeared, which is below...

But these two b&w pics were the only ones forthcoming for pretty much the rest of the summer. It would be later in the year, in November, before more photos were revealed in full color. See those memory-jogging articles here soon!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Shatner May Not Be In New Star Trek Movie

Gotcha! The article is about the first ST movie, not the new one for 2009.

When the efforts began to get Star Trek restarted, it had more sudden jerks than Kirk's flivver driving in "A Piece of the Action." From reluctant stars to script problems, it seemed as if the Enterprise would never leave drydock. These two articles from 1977, one from The Star tabloid and the other from a Macon, GA. newspaper, illustrate the kind of coverage that the starts and stops got in the press.

But eventually it would happen... and in the days, weeks and months leading up to the 2009 release of the new Star Trek movie by JJ Abrams, I'll be posting many articles and items having to do with the creation of Star Trek: The Motion Picture. It was an exciting time unlike any other for Trek fans, and I hope that the posts here help you recapture that period... or if you're too young to remember it, to see what it might have been like.

Friday, November 7, 2008

1976 Crawdaddy article

The road to new Star Trek was long and full of potholes. It's a miracle it ever happened! This article in the rock music magazine "Crawdaddy" reveals some of the problems and pitfalls that were hindering Trek from being revived on film.

As one who lived through as a fan those lean years between the end of the series and the beginning of the movies, finds like this were the only thing we had to look forward to from week to week. Looking back at them now, it's interesting to see it again as past history.