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Deep Space Nine. Deep Space Niiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiine (Not Deep Space 8).
January 26, 2013 11:35 AM   Subscribe

"You know, before Star Trek Enterprise, none of the Star Trek shows had theme songs with words. Until now. And so, I present to you, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, the theme song, with words." [MMLYT]

This singer has also tried his hand on the songs for two other Star Trek shows: Star Trek: TNG [don't miss this digitally enhanced version] and Star Trek: Voyager (also featured in this incredibly sweet duet).

qcotms is not the only one to try his hand at Star Trek themes.

The Blockbuster Buster offers this poorly sung but well written take on TNG.

ThatGamerNinjaGuy offers an incredibly literal DS9 theme song.

But by far the most popular target is Star Trek: Voyager. Here are a bunch of them, many sharing similar or identical lyrics: one crooned [warning: may also contain Stargate theme], one featuring a kid, one filmed using items you can find in your own home!, one about watching the show itself ("♫ My favorite show…since Quantum Leap… ♪"), and of course I've saved the best for last: this irreverent but truly hilarious version that includes a goofily impersonated Janeway [if you watch one ST: Voyager video this post, make it this one; warning: contains naughty language].

BONUS TRACKS:
If you're yearning for a different beat, check out this Balkan-and-TNG-inspired dance number, A Bottle of Slivovitz. And finally, finish it off with a nice glass of filk with Deep Space Nine (was Terok Nor).
posted by Deathalicious (97 comments total) 25 users marked this as a favorite

 
none of the Star Trek shows had theme songs with words

Well, technically...

Bonus: Nichelle Nichols' 1991 (!) disco version of the original series' theme
posted by mhum at 11:41 AM on January 26, 2013 [6 favorites]


You know, before Star Trek Enterprise, none of the Star Trek shows had theme songs with words.

Not entirely true...

Of course, they never actually produced a version with the lyrics included (AFAIK), and Roddenberry did it basically just as a dick-move. But the original did indeed have lyrics to it.
posted by pla at 11:41 AM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Damn, beat me to it by seconds. And the second link, wow!
posted by pla at 11:42 AM on January 26, 2013


It's a little embarrassing that I'm distracted from actually watching the video because I feel the need to tell everyone that, actually, the TOS theme technically had words.

That nobody ever heard.

And which were apparently un-singable.

Because Roddenberry could make a buck out of it.

End pedantry, and I will now go finish watching this funny and entertaining video.
posted by Sara C. at 11:43 AM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


It is my small minded opinion that Star Trek theme songs degraded in quality with each successive show. TOS = pretty decent>>> Enterprise = make me want to strangle small furry creatures.
posted by edgeways at 11:44 AM on January 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


Confession: I kind of love the Nichelle Nicholls disco TOS theme.

Though that really does demonstrate its unsingableness.
posted by Sara C. at 11:47 AM on January 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


edgeways: "It is my small minded opinion that Star Trek theme songs degraded in quality with each successive show. TOS = pretty decent>>> Enterprise = make me want to strangle small furry creatures."

I actually prefer DS9 to TNG and both to TOS.
posted by Deathalicious at 11:50 AM on January 26, 2013 [6 favorites]


And everyone forgets about Voyager, which had an awesome one.
posted by Blasdelb at 11:55 AM on January 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


It's not that easy being red -- a tribute to red shirts.
posted by Deathalicious at 11:56 AM on January 26, 2013


YOU MEAN I'M NOT ALONE?

Anecdotally, I find myself adding lyrics to the Voyager credits far more often than I do with the other shows. Mostly they're about how much Chakotay sucks.
posted by greenland at 11:57 AM on January 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


Loooost in spaaaace
notaclue where they're gooooooing
but VOYager
VOYager
VOYager
goes oooooon!
posted by tspae at 11:58 AM on January 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


And which were apparently un-singable.

Tenacious D proves you wrong!
posted by Strange Interlude at 11:58 AM on January 26, 2013 [7 favorites]


The DS9 "words" are the best because they remind me of the show's weird obsession with beverages like Root Beer and Prune Juice.

Was there something in the Trek Universe writers' bible that prevented anyone from drinking alcohol?

I know "synthehol" exists, and you've got your references to various alien Strong Drink (Romulan ale and suchlike), but where in the frakking Alpha Quadrant does anybody order root beer at a bar? I mean, leaving aside the ridiculousness of anybody drinking prune juice voluntarily, at all.

But I'd be curious to know the reason behind primarily featuring non-alcoholic beverages on the various series, and the general anti-drinking tone of the show. This goes hand in hand with my curiosity about whether a lot of the tropes of TNG are about the legendary "Roddenberry Optimism", or more reflective of late 80's and early 90's cultural mores.

Since I was a kid then, and Star Trek formed a key part of my consciousness in my early teens, it's hard to separate out whether I have a rosy idea of that time because of Trek, or whether Trek reflected a world that was actually wearing rose-colored glasses.

(Another note: I'm also aware of studio Standards And Practices policies about depictions of drinking, though AFAIK nowadays they are not nearly so tight as to require adult characters to order non-alcoholic drinks in a bar setting.)
posted by Sara C. at 12:04 PM on January 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


Awesome. DS9 as Cheers, hang out at Quark's drinking root beer, or prune juice if you are Worf, play some darts with O'Brien and Bashir, maybe re enact the battle of Britain in the holosuites.

If trek had just a bit more of a sense of humor the could have figured out how to do a few multi-camera episodes of "Quark's", a sitcom about an irascible bar owner and his patrons, within the confines of DS9.

Some aficionados of late 20th century TV make a few episodes, based on the real life Quark's. Populate it with caricatures of the real patrons of Quark's, add a laugh track. Everyone on DS9 is excited to see themselves and gathers around to watch. They become mildly outraged by the depictions and commence bickering, turning themselves into their own caricatures. Odo, becomes even more dour and humorless. Worf storms around in a constant tantrum. Sisko cooks up a storm, constantly chuckling. Bashir becomes even more pompous. O'Brien just disappears off on a pointlessly dangerous mission.
posted by Ad hominem at 12:09 PM on January 26, 2013 [6 favorites]


It's Deep Space Nine,
Everything's fine,
Except when it's not,
Because of Gul Dukat,
Odo is there,
He's tough but fair,
And Sisko is on point,
He runs the joint
posted by "Elbows" O'Donoghue at 12:12 PM on January 26, 2013 [4 favorites]


We'll be neediing some lyrics to theme from the animated series as well. I propose

Star Trek, gonna come your way
Star Trek, it's a brand new day
It's Star Trek
Kids are watchin' Star Trek
Y'know we're watchin' Star Trek
We're watchin' Star Trek
Because Star Trek's a good show!
posted by George_Spiggott at 12:14 PM on January 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


DS9 as Cheers

(Morn enters bar)

CROWD:
Morn!

DABO GIRL:
Mornan.
posted by smirkette at 12:15 PM on January 26, 2013 [13 favorites]


obsession with beverages like Root Beer and Prune Juice.

They drink plenty of Blood Wine and Canar and well as Raktajino, I guess that isn't alcoholic though.

Root Beer and Prune Juice serve as metaphors. Root Beer symbolizes humans and the federation in particular. Nog becomes a root beer drinker as a prelude to joining the federation. Worf drinks Prune Juice to set himself apart from other Klingons.
posted by Ad hominem at 12:21 PM on January 26, 2013 [5 favorites]


That was surprisingly charming.
posted by PercussivePaul at 12:23 PM on January 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


Worf drinks Prune Juice to set himself apart from other Klingons.

No, he drinks it because it is a warrior's drink.
posted by Deathalicious at 12:29 PM on January 26, 2013 [11 favorites]


No, he drinks it because it is a warrior's drink.

Sure, that is what he tells himself.
posted by Ad hominem at 12:32 PM on January 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


My favorite Trek anthem: "Star trekking across the universe!"
posted by CCBC at 12:37 PM on January 26, 2013 [5 favorites]


The singer of the last Voyager one has a career ahead of him recording bootleg knock-off Animaniacs songs.
posted by Space Coyote at 12:40 PM on January 26, 2013


needs more garack
posted by clavdivs at 12:42 PM on January 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


Ad hominem: "No, he drinks it because it is a warrior's drink.

Sure, that is what he tells himself.
"

It's what he tells Guinan.

My guess is she noticed he was all grumpy and uptight because Federation food made him irregular.
posted by Deathalicious at 12:42 PM on January 26, 2013 [7 favorites]


My guess is she noticed he was all grumpy and uptight because Federation food made him irregular.

Wow, I never caught that. He drinks an awful lot though. Poor guy.
posted by Ad hominem at 12:45 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


I know "synthehol" exists, and you've got your references to various alien Strong Drink (Romulan ale and suchlike), but where in the frakking Alpha Quadrant does anybody order root beer at a bar? I mean, leaving aside the ridiculousness of anybody drinking prune juice voluntarily, at all.

There was the James Doohan episode of TNG where Scotty gets pretty hammered on some alien whiskey. So it was apparently OK to get drunk, just not on something that could plausibly resemble a real liquor. Unless there are opaque, bright green liquors on the market, which I will grant is totally possible.
posted by indubitable at 12:49 PM on January 26, 2013


I get the "fancy alien liquor" and cast members drinking things in bizarre colors. I mean, it's science fiction, and especially in TOS, you really need to hammer that home by putting plenty of Spaceyness into the look of the show. Same reason TNG crew quarters have sparkly disco bedlinens that look like they would give you bedsores after a short nap.

I don't get the constant "Drinking is bad, mmmmkay" references in dialogue, though. (Though your example shows that wasn't present in the 60's iteration, which is interesting.)

Re opaque bright green liquors on the market, there's midori, but the idea of a grown man getting sloshed on midori is hilarious.
posted by Sara C. at 12:56 PM on January 26, 2013


Midori's not opaque, though. You'd need something like a Grasshopper, which again, isn't terribly intoxicating.
posted by ShutterBun at 1:01 PM on January 26, 2013


I unfortunately don't have a copy on hand to give an example, but the official Star Trek cookbook has a section for recreating all the alien drinks (mainly from Quark's bar) for appropriate strange color/ability to make one drunk. At least a few include the "original" cocktail recipe with intergalactic ingredients before saying "however, x-strange-thing may be replaced with vodka."

I will also admit that I like the disco version better than most of these, mostly due to Nichols' voice. Also as far as I'm concerned the lyrics to every ST series are already known to be "DAH DAH DAH" at maximum volume.
posted by C. K. Dexter Haven at 1:06 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


You are on to something. The two races most prone to drunkenness are the Klingons and the Cardassians. Klingons are always drinking blood wine and fighting and Cardassians are always enjoying a fine bottle of Canar while committing genocide or some other atrocity.They do show humans enjoying a fine vintage wine, particularly Picard, from time to time but they they don't get drunk.
posted by Ad hominem at 1:06 PM on January 26, 2013


Oh man, I love this sort of thing because it demonstrates (happily in a charming and entertaining way here) just how unsuited most theme songs are to the ranges of actual human voices. Those intervals may be regal on a violin but they sound like ass when you're belting them in your living room.

In this vein, my favorite 'add lyrics to a wordless theme song' artifact is without a doubt Dan Harmon's version of Night Court, which I think hits that sweet spot where 'sounds like ass' and 'somehow utterly delightful' overlap.
posted by brieche at 1:08 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


I just thought of something.

Maybe Islam wins the 21st Century Dark Times Culture Wars thing that's supposed to happen in the Trek timeline?

I mean, we see Federation people drinking caffeinated drinks all the time -- lots of coffee and tea, both of which tend to take the place of alcohol in social drinking settings in the Muslim world.

Maybe there are a few centuries back there, before the Federation and warp drive and the post-scarcity economy and the general utopia-ness of the 23rd and 24th centuries, when drinking alcohol was absolutely unthinkable for cultural reasons linked to the winning side of all that Dark Times stuff.

At some later time, after the New Enlightenment brought on by the warp drive and first contact with the Vulcans, alcohol was reintroduced. But its popularity has been drastically downplayed because of the cultural changes of the intervening centuries.

This conjecture brought to you by the fact that, in Turkey, cool secular hipsters totally drink nonalcoholic beer on purpose, and also order non-alcoholic drinks in bars.
posted by Sara C. at 1:13 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Okaaaaaay.

I'm still amazed that Battlestar Galactica incorporated the Gayatri Mantra into their opening. Alternate. I watched the show for at least a season before I realized.
posted by zarq at 1:17 PM on January 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


Well we know actual alcohol is produced on earth, Picard's family owns a vinyard. The federation seems to be thoroughly anti alcohol though. I think it may stem from the Vulcan attitude against alcohol and the federation's close association with Vulcans.
posted by Ad hominem at 1:29 PM on January 26, 2013


I seem to recall a fair number of alcohol scenes in TOS. OK, maybe "synthehol" was mentioned sometimes, but who'd be so backward as to drink alcohol in the 23rd century?
posted by DarkForest at 1:31 PM on January 26, 2013


The disco Trek anthem needs moar "CAUTION: May break ears or brain".
posted by empatterson at 1:32 PM on January 26, 2013


Was there something in the Trek Universe writers' bible that prevented anyone from drinking alcohol?

Cue nerdfight about whether TOS and later are really in the same universe. Yeah, I know, I know, Gene R blessed TNG but he'd got pretty sappy in his old age and (IMO) wasn't responsible for the less fatuous aspects of TOS anyway. But people get drunk as hell in the Kirk era and synthehol hadn't been thought of.
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:36 PM on January 26, 2013


Sara C.: "Maybe Islam wins the 21st Century Dark Times Culture Wars thing that's supposed to happen in the Trek timeline?"

I hate to end this interesting theorizing, but I have to emphasize: alcoholic drinks play a HUGE part of DS9, and it'd be remiss of me not to correct you on that misconception.

Prune juice is singularly Worf's trademark drink, and I don't believe anyone else drinks it. Root beer comes up because Nog acquires a taste for it as a Starfleet cadet, presumably because he's underage and that's what clean-cut Earth cadets drink. But please note that Quark constantly voices his disdain for root beer, chiefly because it is not alcoholic. Dozens of alcoholic beverages are mentioned in the series, some more prominently than others. Cardassian Canarr is a big deal, for example - Quark is often dispairingly left stuck with "ten cases" of Canarr just when all the Cardassians leave the station, and I forget his name but whoever the Cardassian is that takes over in working with the Dominion ends up with a huge Canarr drinking problem, apparently because he doesn't like the gig and ends up drinking it day and night. (As he says, "I wouldn't trust a Cardassian who didn't like a nice sip of Canarr now and then.") Blood wine is probably mentioned even more often than Canarr - in fact it comes up in pretty much every Klingon episodes - and there are a number of episodes where Klingons end up getting too drunk to stand. Once the Romulans become a Federation ally in the last season, Romulan Ale is featured several times, and I remember a party in one of the Section 31 episodes when a Starfleet admiral chokes when trying it fortune first time, and admits that he's probably the only person in Starfleet who hasn't ignored the official embargo on the stuff and drank it anyway. There are numerous episodes where people get raging drunk, too. Jadzia Dax gets trashed and then has a hideous hangover the day she gets married to Worf, for example. Chief O'Brien almost exclusively drinks synthale, although I somehow recall him drinking scotch at some point.

There's probably a lot I'm missing, but suffice it to say: booze is HUGE on DS9. More than any other Star Trek series by far.
posted by koeselitz at 1:45 PM on January 26, 2013 [13 favorites]


Cardassian Canarr is a big deal, for example

As I said, I know the show refers to non-human presumably alcoholic drinks from time to time.

Thanks for the explanation of drinking on DS9, though. I haven's seen much Trek between being a trekkie in my young teens (so, before I had an adult concept of drinking) and my recent marathon watching of the various series on Netflix. I haven't gotten to DS9 yet. TNG really seems to have a recurring DRUNKENNESS IS BAD theme, and the silly lyrics to the DS9 theme in this post reminded me of it again.

Glad to know they're not going to pretend Quark is some kind of soda jerk.
posted by Sara C. at 1:51 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


koeselitz: Notice that none of those drinks come from Earth. I don't think Sara C. is implying that Islam conquers the galaxy.
posted by 256 at 1:53 PM on January 26, 2013


I suppose you all forget that Picard's brother is a vintner.
posted by leviathan3k at 2:07 PM on January 26, 2013


Midori's not opaque, though. You'd need something like a Grasshopper, which again, isn't terribly intoxicating.

Easy, make a grasshopper with green absinthe, maybe throw in some Chartreuse to pump up the green. Bam, blisteringly intoxicating and totally inconsiderate of human taste buds.
posted by The Whelk at 2:07 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Re Picard's brother and vineyards -- wine is grown today all over the Muslim world.

But in my experience even secular predominantly Muslim countries (like Turkey, which I've visited) have a pretty puritanical attitude toward alcohol. It's very possible that 24th century Earth could have similar cultural mores about drinking which are reflected in the culture of Starfleet's flagship but not reflected in a far-flung outpost where the local atmosphere is both more cosmopolitan and more generally pessimistic in outlook.
posted by Sara C. at 2:15 PM on January 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


TOS was a bit prudish mainly because of its TV era; the usual TV-safe hints were dropped that these people drank and slept around, particularly one James T. Kirk. David Gerrold wrote in The Making of the Trouble with Tribbles that one of the scripts featured some of the principal characters hanging at a bar where they drank layered drinks, each layer of which inspired a different emotion; the network told them they couldn't do that.

By the time TNG was produced the fanbase had almost turned Federation into a kind of mortal Heaven where social problems like poverty, alcoholism, and slutty barhopping had been cured, which was what TOS may have looked like if you were a kid who didn't get the hint when a scene starts with Kirk in his bedroom with a hot alien chick and he is putting his shoes on. One of the things I liked about Enterprise is that some of the characters were more human in that way.
posted by localroger at 2:21 PM on January 26, 2013 [4 favorites]


256: “koeselitz: Notice that none of those drinks come from Earth. I don't think Sara C. is implying that Islam conquers the galaxy.”

Hm. Yeah, synthale is the only Earth alcohol they really drink, although Miles and Julian are always seen with a frosty mug in hand after holosuite adventures. It's weird; it does seem like the humans in Star Trek don't get drunk. And even among the non-human main characters, drunkenness is pretty much always a signifier of personal problems. Garek gets plastered on Canarr in that episode when the pleasure-stimulator in his head futzes out and he goes off the rails. I'm pretty sure Miles does actually get drunk in that episode where he's implanted with the memory of twenty years in a prison camp, but again - problem drinking. The only case I can think of where drunkenness isn't pretty much a bad thing is the whole Jedzia-before-her-wedding thing, and (a) she's not technically human and (b) they don't really show her completely trashed; they emphasize the hangover more. (And even then, she wakes up and ends up having to apologize to her future mother-in-law anyway, so it might count as "problem drinking.")

Sara C.: “I haven's seen much Trek between being a trekkie in my young teens (so, before I had an adult concept of drinking) and my recent marathon watching of the various series on Netflix. I haven't gotten to DS9 yet. TNG really seems to have a recurring DRUNKENNESS IS BAD theme, and the silly lyrics to the DS9 theme in this post reminded me of it again. Glad to know they're not going to pretend Quark is some kind of soda jerk.”

Heh – well, the main reason I'm geeking out here is that I just finished watching DS9 over again last week. It is, I think, the best of all the series, not counting TOS, and maybe even better than that at certain points. It got especially good during season 6, when Ronald Moore (who later did the BSG reboot) came on. In fact, it has a lot of common themes with Battlestar Galactica, and I happen to feel like DS9 was kind of a dry run for Ronald Moore on doing a sci-fi series.

To be honest, it's totally true that root beer, of all things, seems to characterize the Federation in Star Trek. That's what Quark thinks, anyway.
posted by koeselitz at 2:21 PM on January 26, 2013 [6 favorites]


Most of the humans we see in these shows are in Starfleet, which might have regulations concerning drinking during their duty shift or while on call.
posted by ceribus peribus at 2:26 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


I cannot actually listen to this because I have every intention of having my version of Geordi write his own book to the DS9 theme at some point for Larp Trek and I don't want to contaminate my brain with someone else's work and run the risk of plagiarizing. This is killing me.
posted by cortex at 2:27 PM on January 26, 2013 [8 favorites]


It is green.

And the earlier dialogue in the scene establishes
1) that Synthehol was adopted some time after TOS.
2) Scotty can taste the difference.
posted by RobotHero at 2:30 PM on January 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


In college in '88-ish, I wrote lyrics for all the Star Treks at the time, matching the thematic premise of the show with classic tv theme songs. 

Sadly, my originals have been lost to time, but I remember which was which:

Next Generation = Welcome Back, Kotter
Voyager = Gilligan's Island
TOS = All In the Family ("Those Were the Days")

And this post inspired me to attempt to reconstruct the one for DS9.
Of course, it's to the tune of The Brady Bunch:

Here's the story
Of a man named Sisko.
He's assigned to a Star Base called Deep Space Nine.
He brought his son,
And some folk from the Next Gen,
And Dax is looking fine.

It's the story
Of a lovely lady
Who was leading a rebellion of her own.
All of them had wrinkled noses
As Bajorans,
And Odo's past's not known.

Till the one day when the lady met this fella
And they knew it was much more than a hunch
That this group would somehow form a series
That's the way they all became the Deep Space Bunch

The Deep Space Bunch!
The Deep Space Bunch!
That's the way they became the Deep Space Bunch!
posted by LEGO Damashii at 2:34 PM on January 26, 2013 [4 favorites]


Why do they call prune juice prune juice? Isn't the thing that makes a prune a prune its lack of juice? We don't call grape juice raisin juice, do we? What the fuck, humans?

This, I'm sure, is what Worf thinks about when he drinks the stuff, on account of it gets him all riled up on the inside and makes him feel more authentically Klingon.

Alternatively, maybe he thinks it'll un-crinkle his face.
posted by Sys Rq at 2:39 PM on January 26, 2013


Alternatively, maybe he thinks it'll un-crinkle his face.

I like to think that Worf went through a brief, powerful moment of catharsis when Guinan brought him his first glass of prune juice, back aboard the Enterprise, and that it was neither chance nor just a weird little whimsy that Guinan refused to tell him what it was before he tasted it: by getting him to taste it, find out he likes it, and only then naming it prune juice she managed to like mentally judo him into suddenly confronting and letting go of a long-held negative childhood association with the word "prune", something kids back on earth would call him to fuck with him on account of the ol' ridges. Just like that, closure, transformation of a bad old memory into a tasty new favorite drink.

Not the Worf says anything about any of that, but then: Worf.

Aaaaand, if you watch the rest of that conversation (it's the cold open on Yesterday's Enterprise), it's totally possible to squint a little and read it as Guinan attempting to subtly proposition Worf, too, which maybe the "trigger a catharsis" thing was the ripcord for, but he just doesn't take the hint.
posted by cortex at 2:54 PM on January 26, 2013 [7 favorites]


I would also like to say that one of the things I did back when the Star Trek Experience was relatively new at the Las Vegas Hilton was to hang with my wife for a few hours at the bar in the space station. This was in the really early days when the futuristic casino had table games with fiberoptic-animated tables and costumed human employees etc.

It was striking that most of the tourists made a point of visiting the bathrooms (both sexes visited the men's room to see the urinal mirror ads) but only a few stayed to gamble, which is no doubt why it later turned into a slot parlor, and hardly anybody hung at the bar. The bar was expensive (the drinks were like seven bucks a pop) but it was totally possible to absorb the vibe and feel that you were hanging in a bar in an actual Federation space station watching the tourists transfer through, the "outside view" rotate by on the "window" screens, and the gamblers from various worlds trying their luck on the layover.

That was as memorable to me as (and lasted much longer than) the motion simulator ride, even if that *did* start with a surprisingly convincing transporter ride.
posted by localroger at 2:58 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


I don't think plum juice is the same thing as prune juice, though. Also interesting is that plums are often either fermented into wine or distilled into Slivovitz, which is mentioned in the FPP. It's almost like there's some kind of message to be sent in the fact that Worf would prefer gross geriatric prune juice to awesome drunkifying slivovitz. (Then again, I guess his parents probably drank slivovitz, being Ukrainian?)

Apparently prune juice isn't the juice of a prune, but, like, water that prunes are soaked in? Or liquefied prunes? Or a sort of prune puree?

Gross. I can't believe I actually googled this.
posted by Sara C. at 2:59 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Sys Rq: “Why do they call prune juice prune juice? Isn't the thing that makes a prune a prune its lack of juice? We don't call grape juice raisin juice, do we? What the fuck, humans?”

According to Wikipedia, it turns out prunes are not dried plums. They are "freestone" versions of plums with easy-to-remove pits grown (usually) for the sake of drying – but apparently you can also get fresh prunes.

So I guess prune juice is actually the juice of prunes.
posted by koeselitz at 3:04 PM on January 26, 2013


I'm sure it was never recorded, but in 1976, Mad Magazine did a parody musical based on tunes like "Send in the Clowns", "The Sounds of Silence" and my favorite, "Aquarius", which in their version became "Dispensible".

Minor actors that you bring on
Perish when they meet a Klingon
One-time players not seen later
Vanish in a planet's crater
Those of us who try to aid them
Fail because the script has made them
Dispensible. DIS-SPENS-I-BLE.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 3:06 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


According to Wikipedia, it turns out prunes are not dried plums. They are "freestone" versions of plums

They're not plums; they're...plums. Thanks for clearing that up.
posted by Sys Rq at 3:20 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's also hinted at that the replicators in TNG alter the food to regulate your nutritional intake. There is an episode where Troi has to enter an override to get genuine, un-altered ice cream.

I'd guess that alcohol would blow your nutritional program, so you'd be limited to a drink or two.
posted by a dangerous ruin at 3:29 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


a dangerous ruin, I just recently saw that episode and came to a few conclusions:

1. Perhaps all replicators alter the food to regulate nutritional intake, or sort of default to the low fat spelt pasta version of whatever the food is.

2. Perhaps the writers of that particular episode were trying to imply that Troi had set these parameters on the replicator in her quarters. I mean, that whole scene plays like a panel of Cathy! anyway. She wants an actual chocolate sundae, not an artificially flavored fro-yo with lo-fat whipped topping.

3. "Chocolate" is some kind of Troi-centric euphemism for either scotch or meth. "No, not a chocolate sundae, the other kind of chocolate sundae! You get what I mean, replicator? Chocolate? You know, we talked about this? I really need it. You know?"
posted by Sara C. at 3:40 PM on January 26, 2013 [7 favorites]


DS9 as Cheers

(Morn enters bar)

CROWD:
Morn!

DABO GIRL:
Mornan.
posted by smirkette


Not only is "Morn" an intended reference and anagram to Cheers' "Norm", it's also the costume they would put winners of the various "You can appear in an episode!" contests in.
posted by sourwookie at 3:41 PM on January 26, 2013 [7 favorites]


(This is what happens when you watch two or three episodes of TNG every day, in sequence, and try to force them to make sense.)
posted by Sara C. at 3:41 PM on January 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


This rough article on Modern Drunkard, which gives an overview of some alcoholic drinks in the Star Trek universe, reminded me that Miles O'Brien actually does have a favorite type of scotch: Wee Bairns. And Scotty makes a big deal in TOS (and TNG, thanks for pointing that out RobotHero) about loving scotch.

So basically the only humans in Star Trek who regularly drink alcohol are Irish or Scottish. Although perhaps to Gene Roddenberry the Irish and the Scottish count as alien races just like the Klingons and the Vulcans.
posted by koeselitz at 3:44 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Fun fact: On TOS, the Scottish characters served as a metaphor for the Irish.
posted by drezdn at 4:49 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's also possible that nearly everything that the replicator makes is alcoholic, which explains why everyone is constantly complaining about the flavor of everything.
posted by a dangerous ruin at 4:59 PM on January 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


Fun fact: On TOS, the Scottish characters served as a metaphor for the Irish.

What is Finnegan, then?

Miles O'Brien actually does have a favorite type of scotch: Wee Bairns.

Ugh. No doubt distilled in the authentic village of Brigadoon whose inhabitants all wear tartan and eat haggis every day.
posted by George_Spiggott at 5:19 PM on January 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


Mad Men Star Trek.
posted by TwelveTwo at 5:27 PM on January 26, 2013


Finnegan is a metaphor for the Space Irish.
posted by Sara C. at 5:29 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


LEGO Damashii: "In college in '88-ish, I wrote lyrics for all the Star Treks at the time, matching the thematic premise of the show with classic tv theme songs. "

Did you mean '98-ish, or did you have some magic portal to the future so you could watch voyager back in the 80s?
posted by Deathalicious at 5:42 PM on January 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


Sys Rq: "Why do they call prune juice prune juice? Isn't the thing that makes a prune a prune its lack of juice? We don't call grape juice raisin juice, do we? "

We call it prune juice because it is made from dried plums, known as prunes. And actually these days they market prunes as dried plums because of some perceived slight against prunes.

Although as far as I know there is no such think as raisin juice, raisin wine does exist and has a very distinctive raisin-y flavor which distinguishes it from grape wine.
posted by Deathalicious at 5:46 PM on January 26, 2013


Deathalicious: see my comment above. Prune juice is made from fresh, non-dried prunes, which surprisingly exist.
posted by koeselitz at 6:00 PM on January 26, 2013


Sara C.: "It's almost like there's some kind of message to be sent in the fact that Worf would prefer gross geriatric prune juice to awesome drunkifying slivovitz."

Um, okay. Just because old people do drink prune juice does not meant it tastes terrible. In fact, like most things, it is highly subjective, but I happen to enjoy its taste. Much like prunes, it has a deep rich flavor and is both sweet and slightly tart.

On the other hand, Slivovitz tastes like lighter fluid.

But one of these drinks gets you drunk and suddenly everyone thinks it's awesome.
posted by Deathalicious at 6:02 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Non-dried prunes exist, but everything I could find online implied that "prune juice" is a beverage made from the juices of partially rehydrated and pureed dried ones.

Ew ew ew ew ew ew
posted by Sara C. at 6:04 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Slivovitz tastes like lighter fluid.

Wrong.

OK, facetiousness aside for a moment, I'm actually the only non-Eastern European person I know who likes Slivovitz. I was just thinking after watching the video upthread that I should try to find some, after unfortunately leaving my old stash of Slovenian home-distilled slivovka behind in New York.
posted by Sara C. at 6:06 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


koeselitz: "Deathalicious: see my comment above. Prune juice is made from fresh, non-dried prunes, which surprisingly exist."

I have actually personally bought the "prune" variety of plum fresh before. They are extremely similar to normal plums, just oblong in shape and, as it states in the article, freestone. Prune juice is most definitely not made of fresh "prune" plums; it is made from dried prune plums.

Here is what the prune variety of plums look like. The inner flesh, like normal plums, is yellowish, and it has a purplish skin. If juiced fresh, it would not be thick and brown like prune juice.

Consider pickling cucumbers. In terms of basic taste and texture, they are very close to regular cucumbers. You would rarely find pickles made of the English or waxy variety of cucumber. However, there is nothing intrinicly different about pickling cucumbers; they are not naturally salty or pickly flavored. Instead, it is the process of brine which gives them their characteristic flavor. Similarly, it is the "prune" variety that is chosen to make prunes, but there is nothing intrinsic in that variety which makes them transform to a thick brown drink when juiced. Instead, it's the process of drying which lends them their prune-y nature.

Also, fun fact: both dark and golden raisins are the same variety of grape - the Sultana (or Thompson Seedless) grape. Golden raisins are dried using a different process which prevents them from turning dark.
posted by Deathalicious at 6:28 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Metafilter: Overthinking a glass of prunes.
posted by desjardins at 6:28 PM on January 26, 2013 [5 favorites]


Seriously, this is the weirdest derail I've seen in some time.
posted by desjardins at 6:29 PM on January 26, 2013 [9 favorites]


Sara C.: "Non-dried prunes exist, but everything I could find online implied that "prune juice" is a beverage made from the juices of partially rehydrated and pureed dried ones.

Ew ew ew ew ew ew
"

I assume that you eat and enjoy bread. Assuming you do, what you are enjoying is ground up dried wheat seeds, rehydrated and risen using yeast farts. Yeast farts!

Honey is bee vomit.

Yogurt is fermented, i.e. partially rotten, milk. Milk which by the way is squeezed from out of the mammary glands, or breasts, of a cow.

Eggs are, well, literally eggs -- the unfertiilized reproductive gamete along with a bird-equivalent of a sort of placental sack.

Bacon is sliced off the belly of the pig and is then smoked or cured. Every time you see some big overweight guy walking around in speedos walking around with his belly hanging all out, that is what you're eating -- only off of a pig.

I mean, why you find prune juice -- which is just dried fruit mixed with water -- so gross, is beyond me.

Most of all I can't comprehend how a thread about Star Trek so rapidly derailed onto an intense discussion of prune juice.
posted by Deathalicious at 6:41 PM on January 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


No wonder it's a warrior's drink. As soon as people start talking about prune juice, it's war.
posted by Deathalicious at 6:45 PM on January 26, 2013 [7 favorites]


You know, the Star Wars theme has words too.

Ha. Ha ha ha. AAAHHHHH-HAHAHAHA!!!! (lightning flash)
posted by JHarris at 6:53 PM on January 26, 2013


Deathalicious, I know. But still.

I know it makes me perpetually twelve years old, but the existence of prune juice horrifies me.
posted by Sara C. at 6:58 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


I like, with Voyager, to sing the actors' names off the screen to the tune of the theme (which was originally the theme to one of the movies, wasn't it? I'm on my phone and searching is bugging me but I think the Voyager theme was repurposed from a Star Trek movie.)

This 'sing the actors names as they appear' method works even better with ER.

Noah Wyle!
Anthony Edwards!
posted by dirtdirt at 7:09 PM on January 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


Yes, I guess it was '98 or so. Well, that correction gives me an excuse to post another one of these (if I can be pardoned for going OT from prune juice). I remember that at the time, I was very impressed with my lyrics. Well, they still make me laugh.

Star Trek: Voyager
(To the tune of Gilligan's Island)

Now, sit right back,
And you'll hear a tale,
A tale of a fateful trip
That disembarked from DS9
Aboard this Starfleet ship.

Their mission: Find the Maquis ship
The captain, she was sure
She'd have no trouble finding them
In a three hour tour.
A three hour tour.

(Space-lightning sound effect)

The wormhole started getting rough,
The tiny ships were tossed.
If not for the efforts of the fearless crews
Both ships would be lost.
The ships would be lost.

The ships emerged on the far side of
The uncharted Delta Q,
With Chackotay,
The Captain too,
The Talaxian and his wife,
A hologram,
A Klingon girl and Vulcan man;
Here on Voyager's Isle!

So this is the tale of the castways, 
They're here for a long, long time, 
They'll have to make the best of things, 
It's an uphill climb.

The first mate and the Skipper too, 
Will do their very best, 
To make the others comfortable, 
And put them to the test.

No maps, no comm, no coffee beans,
Not a single luxury, 
Like good old Zefram Cochrane,
As primitive as can be.

So join us here each week my freinds, 
You're sure to get a smile, 
From Star Trek's stranded castways,
Here on Voyager's Isle!
posted by LEGO Damashii at 7:15 PM on January 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


dirtdirt: "I like, with Voyager, to sing the actors' names off the screen to the tune of the theme..."

I had my own little thing I liked to do whenever the Voyager theme came on, which is that I would reach over and turn off the television.

Maybe I'll actually break down and watch a few episodes now that it's been years and years. I mean, it can't be as bad as I remember it. Can it?
posted by koeselitz at 7:43 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


In fact, somebody should tell me what the three best episodes of Voyager are, and I will watch them. Can anybody help me here?
posted by koeselitz at 7:46 PM on January 26, 2013


This feels like the thread to share the fact that in college, I brought homemade Romulan Ale to several parties. It was Everclear and blue gatorade (none of that beer and food coloring stuff that they had at Star Trek: The Experience) and it tasted really really gross but somehow, no one seemed to mind.

Possibly because we were all wrecked, anyway.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 8:21 PM on January 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


We're older and more responsible now, we can be trusted to brew an actual blue ale that tastes like gunmetal and battery acid.
posted by The Whelk at 9:01 PM on January 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


That sounds delicious.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 9:22 PM on January 26, 2013


Someone call Greg Nog
posted by The Whelk at 9:50 PM on January 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


And I'm sure most of you know that this scene was an homage to one of Scotty's best drinking scenes in TOS: By Any Other Name.
posted by blurker at 10:23 PM on January 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


Although perhaps to Gene Roddenberry the Irish and the Scottish count as alien races just like the Klingons and the Vulcans.

Well, the Trek writers' phenomenally uninformed and -- let us be charitable and call it 'childlike' -- apprehension of even the more familiar non-American cultures right here on Earth does make them a little callow and underqualified to be inventing alien ones, to put it mildly.
posted by George_Spiggott at 3:41 AM on January 27, 2013 [2 favorites]


Koeselitz, awyatt put me onto a couple of mirror universe Voyagers eps from the final season that I quite liked.

I poked around in the rest of the show a bit and found it still kinda frustrating, due to last-act deus ex machina plot resolutions.

I suppose this is the thread to mention that in the early 90's a Seattle area indie theater company had a huge local hit with dual all-singing all-dancing original live-on-stage episodes of TOS and TNG.

The TOS one in particular was simply *outstanding*. They were unlicensed, the theater company had no money except what was coming in from the shows, and after (according to rumor) most of the cast of TOS had individually dropped in to catch the show, Paramont shut it down. It ran for a while though, like a year and a half. I keep hoping the script and or YouTube footage will surface.

I think the company was The Annex, and the show may have been called "Star Drek: The Musical."
posted by mwhybark at 4:46 AM on January 27, 2013 [2 favorites]


In fact, somebody should tell me what the three best episodes of Voyager are, and I will watch them. Can anybody help me here?

Living Witness, which is notable for a few reasons: technically, none of the regular characters appear in it (in fact, uniquely among Star Trek episodes, it depicts no living humans); it is chronologically the last episode of the entire Star Trek franchise (taking place seven hundred years after the rest of Voyager) and is likely to retain that title forever; and it was written by Bryan Fuller,* who went on to create Wonderfalls and Dead Like Me.

Then with your remaining two hours, go outside to play.


*With later subtractions from the quality handled by Brannon Braga and Joe Menosky.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 7:35 AM on January 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


Thanks so much for this post, it brought much singalong joy to my Magic prerelease last night. The compounding nerdery was almost too much for me.

And sure the writing on Voyager was a bit well-worn, but let's just say "Let's just say."
posted by yellowbinder at 8:08 AM on January 27, 2013


Metafilter: rapidly derailed onto an intense discussion of prune juice.
posted by word_virus at 9:46 AM on January 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


Ad hominem: If trek had just a bit more of a sense of humor the could have figured out how to do a few multi-camera episodes of "Quark's", a sitcom about an irascible bar owner and his patrons, within the confines of DS9.

And now I kinda need that in my life -- Quark, Rom, Leeta, Odo and the occasional cameo by Grand Nagus Zek. All the principals would be in full makeup so no need to worry about aging since the series ended. It'd be a weird mix of DS9, Cheers and Hogan's Heroes with that crazy Quark always trying to pull a scam off under Odo's nose.

DS9 had some pretty drinking episodes. O'Brien and Bashir got plastered on the real stuff and belted out Jerusalem.
posted by nathan_teske at 10:34 AM on January 27, 2013 [3 favorites]


Can anybody help me here?

I like Voyager. It's my favorite Trek. Therefore you should probably take my recommendation with a grain of salt because the show I like is one that many actively do NOT, so maybe the episodes I recommend as emblematic of what I like about the show are are the ones that people who don't like Voyager don't like it because of. At any rate:

I like Living Witness, too, but it might not be in my top 3. Maybe: Emanations, Someone to Watch Over Me, and Scientific Method?
posted by dirtdirt at 3:16 PM on January 27, 2013 [2 favorites]


Voyager grew on me, but man, it wastes nearly all of the awesome set-ups it starts with. My vote for top three episodes would be: Year of Hell (pts I & II) and Timeless.

And the series finale has got to be one of the worst in the history of seres finales. Ugh.
posted by smirkette at 6:32 PM on January 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


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