We've been rewatching the original series of Star Trek lately, the remastered dvds in fact. And I thought this would be the perfect time to start readWe've been rewatching the original series of Star Trek lately, the remastered dvds in fact. And I thought this would be the perfect time to start reading the original Star Trek episode novelisations, which I've never read before.
This book contained 7 episode novelisations; Charlie's Law, Dagger of the Mind, The Unreal McCoy, Balance of Terror, The Naked Time, Miri, The Conscience of the King. All of them reworked from the original scripts into short stories, by James Blish.
I was glad to read the novelised versions of the episodes, as I don't always follow episodes very well when I don't have subtitles to help, and I thought it would be great to clear up the bits I couldn't understand. I'm not completely deaf, but I do have probs with understanding speach, and the amount of camera switching and other probs with tv means that I miss a few things where lip reading can't help me catch up.
But as it turns out, Blish allowed himself a little bit of creative liscence in the switch from script to novel, so certain parts of the novels differ in varying ways from the original show. I thought the changes were largely improvements tho, including a lot of things changed to be more technologically and scientifically correct. And I didn't mind that they didn't follow the show exactly, because the feel of thing was perfect, and I feel like the bits I needed clearing up were filled in appopriately enough for me. I particularly liked the addition of Spock singing to himself in Vulcan at the end of one of the novelisations, which never occured in any episode, but was fun to imagine!
I think after this I'm certainly going to try some of the original (non-script-based) novels too!
This is the 2nd of Blish's adaptations of star trek episodes, taking the script and turning them into short stories. This set includes the episode thaThis is the 2nd of Blish's adaptations of star trek episodes, taking the script and turning them into short stories. This set includes the episode that introduced the Klingons, and the episode that set up the movie "Wrath of Khan". This is Important Stuff.
Some of these match very closely with the aired episodes, some are much more changed, but I noticed the differences in every one.
In my estimation most of them have come out better than the original episodes. Everything that annoyed me, the inconsistencies, plot holes, the illogical bits that really irritated me (why yes I am half vulcan).. well basically they've been fixed. I love James Blish for this, I really do. It's about time I read one of his original novels.
Captain Kirk recieves a secret mission for the enterprise; to investigate the origin of a federation distress call issued from a planetary system outsCaptain Kirk recieves a secret mission for the enterprise; to investigate the origin of a federation distress call issued from a planetary system outside federation space. This system far out has 3 habitable planets, which where actually populated by people whose beliefs and way of life fell outside of federation norms and wanted to live outside federation jurisdiction.
When they arrive at the system, they investigate each planet in turn to find the source of the transmission. On the first they find a tribal society of nomads that shun technology, but give some reports of raiders from the sky. On the second they find a deeply religious society, whose priests live in relative luxury and their 'churls' (who are clearly on some kind of medication) are also being raided by other ships. The third planet is technologically developed, and like the others reject any interference from fedaration officers, but it's quite obvious that theres only once place left to look, so down goes the away party. And soon they're finding themselves in a nazi-like society that breeds clones for slaves.
The storyline was somewhat predictable, before they'd even got to the 3rd planet it was fairly obvious what was going on. But then this was the very first novelisation, so I wasn't expecting a masterpiece.
The varied reasons for which people would live outside the federation is certainly thought provoking. The federation may be hyped as the perfect communist society, but it doesn't always know best, and it certainly doesn't cater for everyone.
See my other reviews of Star Trek novels: [Star Trek episode novelisations] | Star Trek 1 →...more