USS Archive

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USS Enterprise Model To Release in 2012

Next year, Polar Lights will produce two editions of an original series USS Enterprise NCC-1701 plastic model kit.

The USS Enterprise will be a 1:350 scale model, over thirty-two inches long, detailed after the 11′ filming model used in the filming of the original series.

“We’ve been getting requests for this kit virtually since the day we started producing models,” said Tom Lowe, Round 2 president. “We’re very excited to begin development of the kit that so many Star Trek modeling fans have been clamoring for.”

According to the Round 2 press release, the kit is being offered in two editions. “The standard release of the kit will include parts to create the ‘production version’ of the ship as it appeared in the classic Star Trek television show.

“A limited Premiere Edition of the kit will be available directly from Round 2 on a pre-order basis. The Premiere Edition kit includes all parts included in the regular edition, as well as parts to make the 1st and 2nd Pilot versions of the ship as depicted in two early episodes of the television show. The Premiere Edition will be limited to 1,701 pieces and will include a serial numbered certificate of authenticity as well as special commemorative packaging. Polar Lights will also be developing a separate accessory pack for both versions of the kits that will include surface weathering decals, photo-etched parts and a light kit.”

Fans who pre-order the Premiere Edition kit will also be enrolled in the 1701 club, where they will receive a limited-edition t-shirt and exclusive development updates by email, which will include interviews and never-before-seen photos of the original filming model. This will be the only place where development updates will be reported, so club members will be the first to obtain information regarding progress on the model.

Gary Kerr, a lifelong Star Trek historian, will be assisting Round 2 with development. “Gary’s involvement in the new kit design has been a tremendous asset,” said Jamie Hood, brand manager of Polar Lights. “His extensive knowledge has allowed us to add intimate details to the model. This kit will be the most accurate representation of the ship produced since the original filming model.”

The standard release kit will be available in hobby shops and specialty stores, and the Premiere Edition kit can be pre-ordered through round2models.com. Click the thumbnail for a high-res image of the USS Enterprise.

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FedCon Day 2: Bakula On Star Trek 2009 & Promised Enterprise Movies + Sirits On Crashing Enterprise(s) + Robbie McNeill, Paul McGillion & Richard Dean Anderson

Friday was epic at FedCon XX with Scott Bakula talking about JJ Abrams Star Trek and promised Enterprise movies, Marina Sirtis explaining crashing the two USS Enterprises, Paul McGillion lobbying for return to Star Trek, Robert Duncan McNeill and Garre…

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DrexTV #4 – Behind The Scenes Video With USS Reliant Model & Last Day Of Voyager Set

Star Trek artist and designer Doug Drexler has one of his very cool DrexTV video blogs up, this time Doug shares some behind the scenes videos, including a close look at the original USS Reliant film model being re-used for TNG, and the last days on th…

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Retro Review: Star Trek III: The Search For Spock

Upon learning that Spock’s consciousness is alive and housed in the brain of Dr. McCoy, Kirk and his crew steal the Enterprise to retrieve Spock’s body.

Plot Summary: The USS Enterprise returns to spacedock for what its crew assumes will be repairs after the battle with Khan, only to learn that the ship is being decommissioned. Meanwhile, Dr. McCoy behaves very oddly, breaking into Spock’s quarters and trying to find passage to the Genesis planet, which is currently off-limits except to the USS Grissom, where Saavik and David Marcus are studying it. Spock’s father Sarek visits and demands to know why Kirk has not returned Spock’s consciousness to Vulcan, which confuses Kirk until the two realize that Spock must have placed his living consciousness – what the Vulcans call katra – into McCoy’s mind during the meld just before Spock’s death. In order to preserve Spock’s essence, Kirk and his crew steal the deserted Enterprise, managing to escape because Scotty has sabotaged the engines of the new USS Excelsior. Kirk tries to contact the Grissom, unaware that a Klingon crew under Captain Kruge has learned of the Genesis torpedo and, believing it to be a doomsday weapon, gone to seek answers on the Genesis planet. The Klingons destroy the Grissom while David and Saavik are on the surface, where they find Spock’s empty coffin, then a rapidly-aging Vulcan child. When the Enterprise arrives, the Klingons damage the ship and take Saavik, David, and young Spock prisoner, killing David when Kirk refuses to give them information about Genesis. Desperate to save his crew, Kirk beams them to the surface and programs the Enterprise’s self-destruct mechanism, which is activated just as Kruge’s boarding party reaches the bridge. The Enterprise crew rescues Saavik and Spock, but Saavik warns them that David revealed a flaw in the Genesis matrix that will soon destroy the planet. Meanwhile, Kruge beams down and challenges Kirk, who defeats him and leaves aboard the Klingon ship with his crew just as the planet explodes. Arriving at Vulcan, the crew is met by Sarek, who asks the Vulcan priestess T’Lar to perform a rejoining ceremony to put Spock’s katra back in the regenerated body. The process is successful, and Spock slowly begins to remember his life on the Enterprise with Jim Kirk.

Analysis: I’m very much of a double mind about The Search For Spock, which wasn’t reviewed as well as The Wrath of Khan when it first opened and which usually finishes in fan surveys behind the other even-numbered original series films. I was thrilled when I first learned the planned name of this movie – I was a teenage Trekkie and desperately wanted Spock to come back, and it seemed like a promise, sort of like a loaded gun on stage, plus Leonard Nimoy directed it, which meant he’d surely be available to play the title role. Of course, with all that in place, the producers must have known they had to bring Spock back or risk the wrath of fans, who can be just as scary as Khan. I remember walking out of the movie theater being satisfied, despite the death of David – since Kirk had to pay in some way for cheating, as did David himself – and some perceived flaws in the screenplay. I had wanted Spock back, and I got that. Now, I didn’t grow up watching cartoons or reading comic books, so I wasn’t fully familiar with the concept that canonical character death didn’t necessarily signify, you know, the death of the character. I was aware that it happened on soap operas – a character would die under strange circumstances because the actor playing him would want to leave, then a few years later when he wanted to return, his demise would be somehow negated. I’d even seen this on Dallas, when Dusty Farlow, whose death I’d found devastating, came back to Sue Ellen Ewing, and I thought it was a cheat.

It didn’t occur to me that I could ever feel cheated in the same way by Star Trek – surely Star Trek would never betray me with cheap gimmicks or recasting or bad spinoffs or reboots! Particularly since the theme of The Wrath of Khan was about how eventually everyone has to face the no-win scenario, I thought Trek’s writers must really get it – that if death itself was going to be reversed, it had better not involve medical nonsense or technical wizardry and particularly not religious mumbo-jumbo like Aslan’s resurrection in Narnia, it had better have a solid explanation and a brilliant portrayal, and it had better be utterly unique. Here’s what happened because of Spock’s magical un-death: I lost the ability to mourn for characters in science fiction. When Tasha Yar died, I waved my hand and said, “Oh, she’ll be back,” and I was right. When Dukat killed Dax, I said, “She’ll be on next season,” and I was right. Voyager pretty much made sport of killing off characters, then reversing the timeline. I couldn’t work up any outrage over Tucker’s death on Enterprise because I’m convinced that in the franchise’s AU future, he’s alive and well…for all I know Pocket Books has done this already. I’m waiting for J.J. Abrams and team to announce they’re bringing William Shatner back as Kirk (and I must confess, I’m hoping that Shatner holds out, as he’s reputedly doing, for so much money that even they can’t afford him); I didn’t love Kirk’s death scene in Generations but I took it seriously, I don’t want him popping out of the Nexus and into the reboot. Do you think I cried for Gabrielle when she died (and returned) on Xena, for Iolaus when he died (and returned) on Hercules, for anyone who died (and returned) on The X-Files or Smallville or — well, I think I’ve made my point.

I’m sure this is all too much to blame on The Search For Spock, which, as I said, didn’t start the trend. But it’s a moment when Star Trek broke with what came before and never went back, which, looking from my current perspective, I think is a big loss. There’s plenty to like about the film itself, including a number of great lines spread out among all the major crewmembers – “Don’t call me tiny” (Sulu), “Sit in the closet” (Uhura), “Up your shaft” and”How else could I maintain my reputation as a miracle worker?” (Scotty), “The word is no – I am therefore going anyway” (Kirk), “That green-blooded son of a bitch” (McCoy) – as well as some big problems that have nothing to do with Spock’s return (the pon farr sequence with Saavik, one of my least favorite incidents in all of Trek history, makes me cringe to this day – David’s gratuitous murder is far easier to watch). The pacing of the film is quite snappy from the start, with much less time spent on visual nostalgia, which is reserved for a single glimpse of Janice Rand standing at attention as the battle-weary Enterprise arrives at spacedock. The Klingons arrive with a bang – literally, blowing up an ally’s ship because she saw the Genesis materials – and Christopher Lloyd is one my favorites, barking phrases in the made-up tongue with glorious conviction. I love what a huge, substantial role McCoy finally gets to play, and I love how DeForest Kelley plays him with Spock’s consciousness taking up space in his mind, somehow logical and cranky about it at the same time. The mind-meld between Kirk and Sarek is very moving, with both reliving Spock’s last moments and Kirk unafraid to express the depths of his feelings (“Your son meant more to me than you can know. I would have given my life if it would have saved his.”).

Then there’s some wonderfully fun space opera stuff – the Excelsior captain filing his nails because he’s so sure his ship is the fastest, the microbes on Spock’s coffin-torpedo turning into giant man-eating slugs, Kruge hollering that Genesis is the most powerful destructive weapon in existence and calling the Federation a gang of intergalactic criminals. The scene where Kruge hears the self-destruct countdown on the Enterprise and screams for his men to get out of there is delightful, even though the subsequent explosion is awfully loud in the vacuum of space (and why the bridge rather than the engine blows up has always been a point of confusion). There are also nice Star Trek details – the cameo by Grace Lee Whitney, the tribbles in the bar, Scotty’s ongoing hostility toward any class of ship said to be faster than the Enterprise, the wonderful new bird of prey that by now is more familiar to Next Gen fans. It’s odd to me that David gets as much grief onscreen from Kirk as Spock did, yet once David is gone, he’s pretty well forgotten. On Vulcan, Sarek, who has just put his logic at risk to save his own son, seems more grieved for Kirk than does Kirk himself. As for the Enterprise, I know there are fans – men in particular – who say they cried when the great ship went down, but I’ve never even blinked. Did anyone ever really doubt that Kirk would sacrifice the Enterprise for Spock?

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Star Trek Groom’s Cake

For one wedding couple, a Star Trek “groom’s cake” puts the groom in the Captain’s chair on the Bridge of the USS Enterprise.

Step aside, Captain Kirk, one (unnamed) groom is the star on a special Star Trek groom’s cake created by a talented cake maker, who goes by the online name of Cakesue.

The cake is a recreation of the USS Enterprise Bridge; including consoles, displays, seating and several Star Trek characters (Spock, Uhura, Sulu and Chekov). The groom is seated in Kirk’s center seat in place of Kirk.

Cakesue paid attention to detail when creating the cake and it shows. Even the monitors around the Bridge are detailed, with images on each one.

Other examples of Cakesue’s work can be seen here.

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New Trek-Themed Keyboard

Several Star Trek-themed keyboards might get typists looking down at their keyboards instead of their computer screens when they type.

Keyscaper, manufacturer of several Star Trek-themed keyboards, has just released a new original series-themed keyboard, as well as a matching mouse.

The image of the USS Enterprise on the new keyboard has been created using a “super-secret” metallic ink, instead of a sticker or a special wrap.

The keyboard has a limited run of five hundred units, and comes in either a wired or a wireless model, with the wireless model using two AA batteries. It retails for $89.99. The companion mouse (wireless) sells for $39.99.

The newest keyboards, plus the other Trek-themed ones, can be seen and/or purchased here.

Keyscaper also sells other themed keyboards, including ones based on: college teams, The Simpsons, the U.S. armed forces, Marvel comics and much more.

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Star Trek: The Exhibition Heads East Next Month

For fans in or within easy distance of Louisville, Kentucky, Star Trek: The Exhibition will open on January 23 at the Louisville Science Center.

Featuring original costumes, props from shows and movies, recreations of sets from all five Star Trek television series and eleven films, Star Trek: The Exhibition has something for any Star Trek fan.

Highlights of Star Trek: The Exhibition include:

  • Props and costumes from Star Trek XI
  • Captain Kirk’s chair, with a visitor photo opportunity using green screen technology
  • Recreation of the USS Enterprise NCC-1701-D Engineering Room
  • Shinzon’s throne from Star Trek: Nemesis
  • Recreation of the USS Enterprise NCC-1701-D Bridge. Visitors can sit in Picard’s Captain’s Chair
  • Replica of Star Trek: The Next Generation‘s Sickbay
  • Recreation of Quark’s Bar from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

Star Trek: The Exhibition will run through May 22, 2011. Tickets can be purchased by heading to this link.

Click on the two following thumbnails to see full-sized photos of Kirk’s chair and the transporter room.


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Cryptic Announces ‘Design The Next Enterprise’ Contest For Star Trek Online

Have you ever wanted to make your own USS Enterprise? Well next month you will have a chance, courtesy of Cryptic who have announced a new contest to design the next Enterprise to be used in Star Trek Online, with winners win a bunch of prizes. Details below.

 
You can design the next Enterprise
Cryptic and […]

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Library Computer: Review of Haynes Star Trek USS Enterprise Owners Manual

In this installment, the Library Computer investigates the latest edition to the Star Trek technical guide family, the illustrated Haynes "U.S.S. Enterprise Owners’ Workshop Manual". By the time you study this book, you’ll not only know the difference between a phase inducer and a plasma phase regulator, but you’ll know how to perform preventative and […]

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Robinson: USS Enterprise Owners’ Workshop Manual

For Ben Robinson, one of the co-authors of the Haynes USS Enterprise Owners’ Workshop Manual, the “real feel” of Star Trek was what attracted him to the book project.

Approached by Haynes through CBS, Haynes decided that having Robinson write the book would be a good idea. “Initially it was just to offer a little advice,” said Robinson, “but as we talked it became apparent that it really would make a lot of sense if I wrote the book. There’s something particularly charming about the idea of a Haynes Manual for the Enterprises. A large part of Trek’s appeal is that it feels very real and that things have been thought out thoroughly.”

Robinson wanted the book to be easier to follow than the previously published Star Trek technical manuals. “It was important to me that we do something a little different with the Haynes Manual,” he said. “From the word go I knew I wanted it to be a bit more approachable than the tech manuals. I mean, they’re brilliant, but they are also pretty hardcore. Sometimes when you’re reading them you think it would help if you’d already been to Starfleet Academy. So I wanted to write something that retained that accuracy but would make more allowances for the ‘casual’ reader, something that someone who loves Trek but doesn’t have a science or engineering background could really get their head around.”

Although Robinson is an “old school Trek fan,” he got the most enjoyment from the chapter on the NX-01 from Star Trek: Enterprise. “I have to say that the single most satisfying chapter was the NX-01, and a lot of the credit for that should go to Doug Drexler, who designed it,” said Robinson. “Doug was amazingly generous with his time and pulled out sketches and diagrams from his files that revealed all sorts of things he’d put into the ship that never made it on to screen. That ship’s incredibly well thought-out and there’s masses of fantastic detail that we were able to include in the book.”

The U.S.S. Enterprise Owners’ Workshop Manual will release on November 2.