TREK-A-DAY: Tomorrow is Yesterday

EPISODE NINETEEN: Tomorrow is Yesterday

Ah, the first time travel episode! The first of a long and occasionally sordid Trek tradition. For every First Contact we have a, well, fury season of Enterprise where time travelers randomly fuck up the timeline and seek out John Conner. So, here I am, after a night of epic bowling and hijinks back in 1960 something and what should appear in the sky but cut-and-paste Enterprise! So a few cheap bowling alley beers in, here’s another liveblog!

-The Enterprise is floating erratically through the clouds; I love how the effects department occasionally forgets how physics works; ummm let’s just have it go up and down a bit? That’s how ships fly, right?
-So the ship got rubber banded back through time, kinda like how the last place player can still win at Mario Kart 64.
-Kirk is hilariously confused about time travel. So are we.
-The Air Force is coming for the ship, a UFO. The effects team still fails at understanding lift.
-This is a great intro to an episode; now this kind of thing is bit blasé but at the time this would have been awesome. Yet another classic (Emmy Award winning) Futurama episode is based loosely on this.
-They beamed up the pilot, here we go with our Blast From the Past man out of time adventure!
-The lighting team is trying to articially make Kirk more dramatic twice as hard as usual.
-hahaha enlightened moment where Kirk explains that women serve is ruined by 60’s sex trumpets. Think early James Bond.
-There are only twelve ships like The Enterprise in the fleet at this point; first real mention of fleet size, we have yet to see another Federation vessel at this point
-United Earth Space Probe Agency. Or the United Federation of Planets…still not a thing.
-They’re letting a 1960’s fighter pilot wander around the ship as Kirk smirks…fuck the Prime Directive.
-Spock just pointed out the Biff Tannen effect where one man with this kind of knowledge of the future could destroy the future through manipulation of stocks and/or sports stats. Lesson learned, Kirk?
-The computer is calling Kirk, dear now.
-Amazing, a planet of women engineers determined the computer needed more personality and added one. Awesome.
-The pilot is trying actively to create a time paradox. What a jerk.
-Scotty can fix the engines…but not the fact that they’re in the 60’s. Dang.
-Kirk is vexed by his new girlfriend computer that yet again fed a Futurama episode, where Bender falls in love with the Planet Express ship.
-Stop me if you’ve heard this one: a red shirt walks down hallway…
-Annnnnd the pilot beats the hell out of him and steals his phaser. Then Kirk disarms and KO’s him. Like a boss.
-McCoy beings up a valid point: landing on earth would mean an entire crew’s worth of chances to change the future.
-Balls. Turns out his son his an important dude in the space program. Dang.
-Amusingly, this all ties into a story Shatner told as part of his one man show: during the moon landing, he was sleeping in a trailer in a field, watching it on a tiny tv on his chest. He fell asleep. He was awoken by a knock on the door of his trailer and opened it to find a small boy, who said, “Are you Captain Kirk?”
Tired and irate, he nevertheless said. “Yes.”
“Is this your ship?”
Shatner sighed, “Yes.”
“Can I come in?”
“Sure kid, come on in.” Tired Shatner pointed at his stove, “Those are the controls,” at the shower, “And that’s the transporter.”
“Neat. Thanks.” The shy little kid nodded and left. As Shatner observed, “Somewhere out there s a guy, in a bar, telling people he got a tour of Captain Kirk’s ship the day of the moon landing…and no one believes him. But I believe him.”
That kid might as well be the pilot in this episode…sometimes life really does imitate art.
-If only they knew that one day they’d actively TRY and go back in time so they could save the whales…all this would seem moot.
-Great McCoy/Spock banter: “Shouldn’t you be working on our time travel calculations, Mr Spock?!” (After carrying on a conversation) Spock: “I am.” awesome.
-dang, they beamed up an overly dressed military guy. At this rate, they’ll have more 60’s people a aboard the ship then crewmen.
-Kirk is learning, shell shocked guard man is to stay in the transporter room.
-There’s a guy who may or may not be James Dean who works on the base. That would be crazy.
-Everyone on the base wears full military dress uniform. It shows they’re in the military.
-Kirk just flying speared three military men. The US Army of the 1960’s had yet to master defense against the double punch.
-Holy shit this fight is amazing. Kirk dodged a guy by doing a doing a doorway push up. This actually makes the Gorn Captain fight look nuanced.
-Best Kirk smile ever.
-“Blast your theories and observations, Mr. Spock!” Bones, being useful.
-Apparently soldiers wore cravats a lot in the 60’s.
-Direct address from Kirk; apparently today is too nice a day to go to school. Chickachicka!
-Spock has decided to go to earth guns blazing. Ballin’
-Old school replicators are silly. The other 60s guy wanted a very specific meal, the transporter engineer just so happened to have that exact card in his belt. Helpful belt. It. Use have been the meal card labelled “Man out of time”
-Oh, the lighting guy is back, now Kirk is dramatic again.
-Sulu judo chopped a guy. Awesome.
-They’d better hope that beating up a room full of army guys doesn’t change the future. “Commander, if you’d only not gotten that concussion in ’61, we would’ve won in ‘Nam.” Way to go, Enterprise.
-Oh, we’re going for the “if we get this time travel thing right you’ll be back before you left with no memory” thing. Yeehaw.
-Slingshot! This effect is used in sci fi all the time from now on. Fun.
-They seem to forget they already mastered time travel before…Trek-A-Day remembers.
-Seriously, 90% of the time, the special effects on the ship are awesome. Then they shake a still frame a bit to show the time travel effect. Boo-urns.
-Deus Exed! They dropped the pilot back before being beamed aboard…all is the same! Except we had a great time.
-Hooray! We’re Back to the Future!
-…but then future Spock showed up:
Kirk: Mr. Spock? What happens on the future, do we grow up to be assholes or something?
Spock: No, Jimmy, it’s your kids! We’ve got to do something about your kids!!

…or something like that.

A very fun, very functional time travel episode that set the stage for many fantastic plots (and many confusing ones). Classic Trek.

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Posted on February 20, 2012, in Star Trek, Trek-A-Day. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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