Tag: spock (Page 1 of 2)

#017: Star Trek III: The Search for Spock (TOS #17)

For the sake of best practice, I make a policy of watching a movie immediately prior to reading its respective novelization. Naturally, this causes me to feel an acute apprehension about redundancy. I just watched the movie, I think. Is this really necessary? One of the more surprising benefits and pleasures of running this little website has been not only realizing that that worry is misplaced, but seeing it gleefully dashed against the rocks, and The Search for Spock represents the most thorough obliteration yet.

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#011: Yesterday’s Son (TOS #11)

Another Star Trek novel opens with yet another fawning introduction by a figure of some import within the community. This time, it’s written by Howard Weinstein, still fairly fresh off his own pretty decent Trek book, The Covenant of the Crown. I’ve previously pontificated on the questionable utility of these obnoxiously obsequious prefaces, but in Ann Crispin, Weinstein is fortunate enough to finally have a subject on whom such words aren’t wasted.

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#009: Triangle (TOS #9)

Ah yes, Sondra Marshak and Myrna Culbreath, authors of The Prometheus Design. Man, that was a rough book to get through. Kirk really took a beating in that one. Well, I certainly hope nothing like that happens in this book.

Page 8: The Ambassador smiled ironically. “Have you considered my servant Job?” he quoted.

Welp.

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#008: Black Fire (TOS #8)

Some of these early Star Trek books have unctuous introductions that tell tall tales about the authors and lavish heaps of sickly-sweet accolades on them. Black Fire is one of those books. Its introduction was written by Theodore Sturgeon, a man of myriad science-fictional accomplishments, the most relevant of which for the purposes of this review are that he wrote the indisputably top-five TOS episode “Amok Time” and that he coined an axiom known as Sturgeon’s Law, which famously states that 90 percent of everything is crap, a figure some might argue is conservative when it comes to Star Trek novels.

Fluff jobs like these are a risky gambit that, to my way of thinking, don’t really have much of an upside. If the book sucks, the intro writer ends up with pie all over his face, and if he talks up the author and the book ends up being all right or good, the net gain is negligible. It’s not like it somehow reaffirms the strength of the mythos.

What I mean by all of this is: for a guy with credentials like Sturgeon’s, he sure picked a heck of a book to stick his neck out for.

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#007: Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (TOS #7)

This week, dear readers, we arrive, at last, at what is unarguably the apotheosis of original-recipe Star Trek: the second film, The Wrath of Khan. To quote Hugh Laurie at the end of Blackadder Goes Forth, “This is, as they say, it.” It is as thrilling as The Motion Picture is boring. It is an ingenious work of deconstruction, the first to upend many deeply entrenched series tropes that were (to that point) taken for granted. Its greatness does not depend to any extent on your opinion of Star Trek, which is the only work under the TOS banner I would make that claim about other than possibly “City on the Edge of Forever”. It is the ne plus ultra of Trek movies, and it is highly unlikely that any that currently exist nor any that may be made in the future will ever surpass it.

I considered beginning the above paragraph with “Pardon the hyperbole”, except I’m not so sure any of it actually is.

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