Once upon a time, I was young.
Just about to hit my teens, in fact, and discovering–via the magic of reruns–the world of Classic Trek. Star Trek, The Original Series. TOS.
And boy, did I watch that show. I watched it, made copious notes about it, created character & episode guides, role-played it, dove upon the first David Gerrold and James Blish books with a scary glee, and blithely ordered The Making of Star Trek from a bookstore across the city, having no reference points and no idea that a closer bookstore could have ordered it. The Maternal Unit was Not Pleased.
(Hey, I’d called everywhere looking for that book…that was just the first store where they offhandedly said, “Oh, we can order that for you if you’d like…” What did I know from special ordering at age 12?)
Oh yeah, I had the episodes memorized. You betcha I could tell which one was which from the first moments of the show. You betcha that even at that age, I was in awe over City on the Edge of Forever–and snorting over the line, “Brain and brain, what is brain?” (Alas, those were formative years…I still mutter that to myself on challenging days…)
I was also a Kirk girl. Oh, so bold and noble and heroic! So dashing and commanding and full of ideals! (Even if they did dress him in that greeny-gold that looks good on no one.) Yup, I fell for that hook, line, and sinker. And as I moved on from that–enjoying the various movies and the various series, if never with quite the same fervor (but well enough to have all the episodes of TNG on tape and leap at the chance to write a book for the tie-in line!), the Kirk thing stayed with me. Sort of a default.
But this interesting thing has happened. This year, I picked up one of the earlier Trek DVD sets. Not one of the really fancy remastered oooh special effects sets, but it definitely has all the scenes with all their little pieces (which the reruns most definitely did not!). I use DVDs to keep my brain occupied as I exercise on the elliptical, so of course this purchase was totally righteous.
And here’s what I’m noticing: It’s a better show than I thought it would be. There’s been much ado and sneering about the better special effects, the better tech, etc, of later Trek franchises, but all the clunky stuff pretty much falls into the background when you’re caught up in the story. And yeah, you have to know the time in which it was set, to better appreciate some of the inadvertent sexism. But the same can be said for many classic accomplishments.
And– *wince* –those poor red shirts…
Here’s the other thing I’ve discovered: I’m no longer a Kirk girl. I’m a Spock girl now.
Back away, Kirk-lovers, I’m not dissing the Captain! Still all the things he was before. But what I didn’t notice, at that young age, was what stood beside him. The fact that Spock, for all his supposed lack of emotion, feels more deeply, with more nuance, than any man who finds himself free to emote at will. The fact that Leonard Nimoy, in order to convey the conflicting layers of his character, turned in a series of wonderful performances.
It’s his face I find myself watching, when I have to choose.
So yes, I was a Kirk girl, and now I am a Spock girl, watching with awareness and a certain fascination at how much time changes perspective–as well the actions and behavior, fictional or not, that touch us.
It’s too bad about that brain thing, though.
“Brain, brain, what is brain?” Oy! Spock’s Brain was a horrible episode. LOL
Crysta–it did at least provide us with a handy little saying! ;>
Everything Trek that came after the original series was fine and all, but my heart does belong to Kirk and Spock. <3 While I'm more of a Kirk girl, I absolutely appreciate the awesomeness of Spock, too.
And now I feel I must point you at Ensign Sue Must Die! It’s a delightful Trek parody comic, although it is specifically parodying the new movie.
Lots of awesome Chibi Spock mileage in it though. 😀
Angela, that is just EVIL! Bwah ha ha!!
LOL!!! I was *always* a Spock girl.
And I got my ST fix about 10 years ago when my boys needed roll models. ST turned out to be a really great show for providing that. The story lines emphasize conflict resolution over gunfights, but leave plenty of room for the boys to do the cowboy thing when necessary. The first and second season were really good.
I’m about to roll into second season. I’m…prepared for third season. ;>
I am, and always will be, a Spock Girl.
Okay so… speaking as the sister who used to … *ahem* .. roleplay Star Trek with you: I recall you actually went through Scotty and Chekov phases! When we played, I was always Kirk, and you were either Scotty or Chekov. Your friend Kim would usually be Spock.
Not to deny that you were a Kirk girl at that time, but you also had other allegiances! 🙂
I’m still totally a Kirk girl, but have always liked Spock too! I completely agree with you about the nuances of Nimoy’s acting in that role.
At least our roleplay never included any Mary Sue characters!
Well, sure! Kirk was untouchable. Scotty was smart and made things go, and Chekov was cute.
SO lucky to have dodged the Mary Sue bullet!
I’ve been a Spock girl since seeing my first ever episode on german TV (in german, to me, Kirk had an irritating voice).
Then my husband decided to buy me the whole OST on video (yeah I’m old!) and I loved Kirk’s real voice but remained a Spock girl – all those pent up emotions and the little facial movements to express so much. Especially those eyebrows lol.
Ilona, I can’t even imagine watching my first episodes with the wrong voices–!
Definitely a Spock girl myself as well. Or a Data girl 😛 PS: SI!
Data! Now there’s a whole ‘nother kettle of…parts! (SI!)
I was always a Spock girl. 😎 I appreciated Shatner’s shirtlessness, but it was Spock’s complicated nature and conflict that always drew me. But did adore the eps when Nimoy got to cut loose and let him be so emo!
Emo–I love it!
Lady Jade, you had the wisdom from the start!
If you’re ordering third season, you’re braver than me. But I can still recite entire scenes of Second Season, and I watch them pretty often. My favorite episodes are ones with NO GUEST STARS — and usually confined to the ship. (Immunity Syndrome immediately comes to mind.) I’m going through Enterprise and Voyager right now, but after that, I’ll be back to the original series. I never get tired of second season.
Lorraine–the set came with third season–got it used from the very same sister above who *ahem* used to roleplay back when we were pre-teens. But now I’m scared! Trying to remember…