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Balance of Terror - episode #9
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Bogmeister
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2019 12:54 pm    Post subject: Balance of Terror - episode #9 Reply with quote

____________
__________Classic Star Trek: Balance of Terror


__________


BALANCE OF TERROR (1st season, episode #9)
Directed by Vincent McEveety / writer: Paul Schneider Like a Star @ heaven Air Date: 12/15/66



Now arrive...the Romulans. And they do not bring gifts. No, they bring war. War! There's a lot of history in this episode. According to this one, Earth fought the Romulans 100 years earlier in a conflict now known as The Romulan Wars. After 5 years of ship-to-ship fighting (where neither side saw a visual of each other), a treaty was signed and a 'Neutral Zone' was established, a boundary between us and the Romulan Empire. Now, in this episode, the treaty appears to be broken as our outposts, set up on asteroids, are attacked by a weapon of immense power. Yes, the Romulans are back, testing their new war toy, and we're in trouble. Kirk has some decisions to make, such as figuring out how to avoid a... hm, an interstellar war, maybe?




This was essentially a remake of the 1957 war film The Enemy Below, replacing ship destroyers & U-boats with starships. What impressed me was that this episode didn't shy away from the grim aspects of war; the writers & actors weren't kidding around here, preparing for, potentially, another years-long conflict, such as the great scene of Kirk sitting down with his key officers for a war council. The buck stops with him and his decisions will have long-reaching ramifications. Then begin the cat-and-mouse games in outer space between two starships; yet, which is the mouse? There's also a subplot involving bigotry, showing that not all of today's poor attitudes have disappeared by the 23rd century. Again, this all resembles a World War II scenario, including the mistrust that many Americans felt back then towards Japanese-Americans. More, this issue of prejudice would be revisited less subtly in the 6th Star Trek film, The Undiscovered Country.






On the Romulan side, actor Mark Lenard makes his 1st appearance in the Trek universe as the Romulan commander. He's terrific in the role, not war-hungry as we might expect, the usual unexpected curves in Trek scripts. Lenard returned in the 2nd season as a Vulcan, Spock's father, so he's quite versatile. He even played a brief role as a Klingon commander in the first Trek film, Star Trek the Motion Picture. We all have to give credit where credit is due: Lenard was the actor who set the tone in portraying Romulans, elderly Vulcans and the new breed of Klingons! Quite a range. He may have been one of those actor's actors - unheralded and not recognized much outside the Trek universe. The Romulans next appeared in the 3rd season episode The Enterprise Incident (not counting their ships' appearances). A fairly gripping, tense episode.

BoG's: 9/10




_______ Star Trek-Trailer TOS-season 1 episode 8


__________


Kirk: "I wish I were on a long sea voyage somewhere; not too much deck tennis, no frantic dancing – and no responsibility. Why me? I look around that bridge, I see the men waiting for me to make the next move. And Bones – what if I'm wrong?" (rising)

McCoy: "Captain..."

Kirk: "No, I don't really expect an answer."

McCoy: "But I've got one; something I seldom say to a... customer, Jim. In this galaxy, there's a mathematical probability of three million Earth-type planets. And, in all the universe, three million million galaxies like this. And in all of that – and perhaps more – only one of each of us. . . . Don't destroy the one named 'Kirk'."


__________________ Kirk thinks he has problems?
The Romulan commander looks like he really regrets getting out of bed that stardate!




BoG
Galaxy Overlord Galactus


Last edited by Bogmeister on Mon May 20, 2019 4:51 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Krel
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2019 2:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The episode did indulge in the old cliche with what happens to the newly married crew member. But a great episode.

David.
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2019 5:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

________________________________

When I was reading Bog's post while getting ready to post it, I thought about the subplot soap opera with the newly married crewmen. It was a bit sappy, I think.

Oh, well . . . life in space doesn't have to be cold. (That's an old Klingon proverb, I think. Very Happy)

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Pow
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2019 1:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The weapons room of the Enterprise was a redressing of the Engineering room.

The chapel was a redressed Briefing room.
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trekriffic
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2019 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually Robert and Angela never got married. The Red Alert sounded before they could even say their vows. Later, in the weapons room the bride and groom have this little exchange...

ROBERT: (the groom) Happy wedding day, almost.
ANGELA: You won't get off my hook this easily. I'm going to marry you, Mister, battle or phaser weapons notwithstanding.

Anyway, this is my favorite TOS episode I think mostly because of the cool FX. The phaser (oddly looking like what we would later come to know as a photon torpedo) sound to me was perfect. And the great soundtrack really reflected the suspense and catastrophic consequences of combat.
Always liked the analogy of this being based on a WWII destroyer versus a WWII sub. Or possibly a heavy cruiser against a sub.

I built a large and small model version of the Romulan Bird-of-Prey. This is the smaller of the two, about the size of the palm of my hand.



IMG_1019 by trekriffic, on Flickr
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

________________________________

This is perhaps my favorite Star Trek episode. I remember seeing it when it first aired, and I recognized it's inspiration as the movie I'd watch a few years earlier on NBC's Saturday Night at the MoviesThe Enemy Below!

I own the DVD of that fine movie, and I've watched it many times.

The plot of Balance of Terror is a great blend of drama and sci-fi action, with two admirable starship captains trying to outwit each other.

I wish TOS had given us more stories as good as this one. It they had, the series might have lasted much longer.

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Eadie
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2019 11:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here are 2 of the symbols on the back recessed wall of the Enterprise's chapel:



Any ideas on what they might mean?

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Pow
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2019 2:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Romulan star ship design was never one I cared for on ST:TOS.

The battle cruiser seen in episodes of ST:TNG was fantastic looking.

The Romulan ships in ST:TNG motion picture when Picard and crew went to the Romulan planet were also fine looking.

Star Trek:Enterprise did a wonderful design for their first encounters with the Romulans. The vessel was an updating of the one from the original series. Much sharper looking configuration in ST:E.
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johnnybear
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 27, 2019 11:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

But ENT was set in another reality, right? It contradicted too much of TOS for my liking to be honest!
JB
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Pow
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 27, 2019 11:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To my knowledge Star Trek: Enterprise was set in the same reality as ST:TOS, ST:TNG, ST:DSN, and ST:V.

Jonathan Frakes & Marina Sirtis were guest stars on the final episode of ST:E as their characters of Riker & Troi from ST:TNG.
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johnnybear
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PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2019 9:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I didn't like ENT to be honest and have always taken it that the Temporal conflict raging in time and space altered events of the TOS timestream, but like you say Riker and Troi were in the final episode! It's not a series I have rewatched so I'm going on a long, long memory!
JB
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2019 4:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

________________________________

I guess strictly speaking you're both right. Enterprise started out as being in the TOS universe, but there's no doubt that the season-long "Temporal Wars" story arch created numerous changes in the timeline.

That, of course, is unavoidable with time travel.

However, Voyager (my favorite of the Trek series) had several extremely well done episodes that introduced the Temporal Prime Directive, which was enforced by a Federation agency that existed several hundred years after the Voyager era.

It was their duty to rectify (as much possible) any changes caused by "temporal incursions" committed by advanced races who screwed around with time travel.

In fact, it was that far-future agency introduced in Voyager that was involved in the Temporal Wars from Enterprise.

Concerning JB's question about whether or not all that messing around with the timeline in Enterprise might qualify it as being in "another reality", I'd have to say . . . . no.

Why?

Well, in Star Trek (2009) they make a point of showing us that the timeline which held all the events in TOS and every other Trek series was drastically altered, rewriting history from the moment James Kirk's father was killed, and everything after that.

My understanding of the way time travel would really work (if it really worked), is that a change in the timeline doesn't actually create a NEW reality . . . it erases the old one!

In other words, if you went back in time and shot me when I was 18 years old, preventing me for ever creating All Sci-Fi in 2006, that wouldn't create a new universe that didn't have this message board, while old universe would carry on with a Bud Brewster who was not shot.

It would just remake this entire universe from that moment forward, with no Bud Brewster_Sad, no All Sci-Fi_Crying or Very sad, and no fond memories of me in the hearts of several lovely ladies who would never reach true bliss by falling desperately in love!_Shocked

Fortunately, I'm here, the board is here, and ladies like the one below have sweet dreams from time to time._



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johnnybear
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PostPosted: Mon May 13, 2019 1:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My understanding is that by altering the past you DO create a new reality devoid of the original, Bud! The scenario you presented was the one that we were all brought up to believe in the sixties and seventies and that by destroying past events you create a world where such and such never existed a bit like how time isolates a incident in the past and then changes the future to follow! The Mandela Effect comes to mind along with the Hadron Collider theory!
JB
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Mon May 13, 2019 3:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

johnnybear wrote:
My understanding is that by altering the past you DO create a new reality devoid of the original, Bud!

I guess I don't care for the idea that making a change in the past causes a "new reality", because it doesn't make as much sense as the more intuitive idea that cause-and-effect rules the universe.

If you go back in time and change a single "cause", all the "effects" that followed will be affected. If a change causes a new reality to be created, does the old reality continue on unchanged?

Doesn't quite seem logical. Confused

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Last edited by Bud Brewster on Mon May 13, 2019 7:08 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Pow
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PostPosted: Mon May 13, 2019 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very fine episode but not everyone's cup of tea.

Harlan Ellison was in a conversation with the scriptwriter for BOT. When the writer mentioned that he based his story upon the film "The Enemy Below'' Ellison was outraged.

He felt that ripping off another writer was despicable. He also thought that it showed a lack of imagination which is something science~fiction should never have.
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