LaForging New Alliances
January 21, 2011 10:29 PM   Subscribe


 
Part II is here! Which, in hindsight, is probably more interesting.
posted by spiderskull at 10:42 PM on January 21, 2011


I wish I could be cynical about this, but I can't. Glee!
posted by lumpenprole at 10:48 PM on January 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I remember this episode. It was the best.

Relatedly, whenever something genius happens over here, we say it is "CleVar Burton".
posted by breath at 10:50 PM on January 21, 2011 [3 favorites]


I remember this quite fondly as well. My worlds collided that day. My nerdy, nerdy worlds.
posted by Rangeboy at 11:04 PM on January 21, 2011 [8 favorites]


This reminds me that the latter-day Reading Rainbow theme is pretty awful compared with the original. So grating and twangy and nasally. It's like Barney's new voice. It makes me dread visiting my stepsisters and having to sit through these and other shows on the local public station. (And this is from somebody who didn't mind Spongebob.)
posted by Rhaomi at 11:09 PM on January 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


to this day I still remember seeing the sparkles-mixed-in-water effect.

but you don't have to take my word for it.
posted by aloiv2 at 11:35 PM on January 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


His name is Geordi. GEORDI. Not "Jordi" like in your tag.

YOU'RE NOT EVEN A NERD AT ALL!!!
posted by Sys Rq at 11:41 PM on January 21, 2011 [16 favorites]


Thanks for posting this
posted by the noob at 12:17 AM on January 22, 2011


Sys Rq -- Sweet mother of... you're right. I've been recently referring to someone in my field whose name is spelled "Jordi"... that is my legitimate excuse.
posted by spiderskull at 12:20 AM on January 22, 2011 [2 favorites]


Also, Sys Rq, look again! I have no idea what you're talking about...
posted by spiderskull at 12:20 AM on January 22, 2011 [4 favorites]


SPIDERSKHAAAAAAAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
posted by Sys Rq at 12:27 AM on January 22, 2011 [5 favorites]


I can't even click the link. It would be like the day I found out the teachers do not sleep in their classrooms. I am not ready for this yet...I might never be.
posted by Felex at 12:30 AM on January 22, 2011 [2 favorites]


I've been going on a Star Trek TNG bender for the past few months. In fact, I had just finished an episode when I came across this post. And the first reaction I had was, "Geordi looks so weird without his visor."
posted by funkiwan at 12:30 AM on January 22, 2011


Man, I'd love to see more on how the techniques and effects changed over the years from season 1, which aren't exactly awe inspiring most of the time* as compared to some of the later seasons which look pretty damn slick even today, 16 years later.

* Notable exception: The printer ink monster from "Skin of Evil" is still scary as fuck
posted by Throw away your common sense and get an afro! at 12:47 AM on January 22, 2011


Oh and of course: COMPLETE STAR TREK

They seem to be missing DS9 and Voyager, so while your weekend might be ruined, you can at least count on rejoining society by Monday.
posted by Throw away your common sense and get an afro! at 12:53 AM on January 22, 2011 [1 favorite]


The day I saw this episode is the day I became interested in Star Trek. Seriously influential.
posted by utsutsu at 12:57 AM on January 22, 2011


The episode they're filming is "Symbiosis".
posted by finite at 1:17 AM on January 22, 2011 [3 favorites]


Good memories of watching this at my great-grandma's house, getting ready for the third grade. Sigh.
posted by organic at 1:42 AM on January 22, 2011


Best. Episode~
posted by Mizu at 2:03 AM on January 22, 2011


And the scout ship that Legato shows? I'm fairly certain that bulk of it is a piece from a gobots toy that I had at one point. (someone tell Legato the difference between octagons and hexagons)
posted by oonh at 4:09 AM on January 22, 2011 [2 favorites]


Found it. (I think I just earned all my dork points for the forseeable future):

gobots power suit combiner, look at the feet.
posted by oonh at 4:18 AM on January 22, 2011 [2 favorites]


I was going to drop this in the "Money for Nothing" thread, but I think I'll leave it here, instead: TNG Acid Drive test. Engage!
posted by steef at 4:31 AM on January 22, 2011 [13 favorites]


I just want to join the chorus of rememberers... I have a very vivid memory of this episode in my parent's kitchen. And yes, it was two of my very nerdy worlds colliding.
posted by flaterik at 5:29 AM on January 22, 2011


FUCK YA NCC-1701-D!
posted by Beardman at 6:28 AM on January 22, 2011 [1 favorite]


Felex - click the link. I saw this when I was a kid -- sheer luck, I think (I was a bit old for RR, but it wad probably summer) -- and it was AWESOME. I'm so glad someone's made it accessible.

in it, you fond out that Michael Dorn is almost as cool as Worf, and that the geniouses in the effects dept at ST:TNG build set models out of odds and ends (like the little bits of plastic left over after you punch out a plastic model) and transformed them into massive alien computers.
posted by jb at 6:57 AM on January 22, 2011


Greatness. Sparkles in water! Amazing.
posted by Locobot at 7:03 AM on January 22, 2011


I see your acid drive test and I raise you.
posted by The Whelk at 7:18 AM on January 22, 2011


I, too, remember and delight in this episode. I used to watch TNG with my dad after dinner. And I loved Reading Rainbow. On the day that those two things met....well, I was a happy little kid!

Acid Drive Test was awesome, but The Whelk, your White Rabbit link creeped me out. I blame Harvey and Donny Darko for that, though.

Thanks for posting!
posted by chatongriffes at 7:29 AM on January 22, 2011


I can't even click the link. It would be like the day I found out the teachers do not sleep in their classrooms. I am not ready for this yet...I might never be.

Seeing some behind-the-scenes shots of the bridge taken from a low angle so you can see the holes in the roof of it did strange things to me too, and I've worked on sets; I know there's no damn Santa Claus!
posted by bonaldi at 7:35 AM on January 22, 2011


LeVar seems disproportionately excited by the same technology used to put a weatherman in front of a weather map.
posted by evilcolonel at 8:09 AM on January 22, 2011


Yay! This was one of my favorite episodes of Reading Rainbow when it first came out!
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 8:24 AM on January 22, 2011


Here is the kitten we named after Geordi. He was adopted by an engineering physicist who currently works as a pastry chef.
posted by amtho at 8:30 AM on January 22, 2011


Oh man, that was my favorite episode ever! I was such a Trekkie as a kid (I used to watch TNG with my dad, when we had my aunt and uncle's TV whilst they were away), and this was one of my first exposures to special effects and the magic of behind-the-scenes visual effects. Probably one of the things that nudged me towards animation, as well.

Awesome, awesome stuff.
posted by po at 8:35 AM on January 22, 2011


Seeing some behind-the-scenes shots of the bridge taken from a low angle so you can see the holes in the roof of it did strange things to me too, and I've worked on sets; I know there's no damn Santa Claus!

Luckily, a trip to Star Trek: The Experience fixed that for me. When they have you walk around the bridge of the Enterprise, you become convinced, again, that it's a real, 3d space.

(Have they opened that back up yet?)
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 8:56 AM on January 22, 2011


For most of my life this was the only Star Trek I'd seen. See, I was a Star Wars nerd, an apprentice Jedi roleplayer before "padawan" ever entered Lucas's decrepit mind.

I loved this episode of Reading Rainbow (and I was really big on rabdargab and the Pizza Hut deal too). Levar showed off everything awesome about TNG -- I already knew the lore/storyline was crap. I finally watched the series in 2009; I now put an episode on before I go to bed every night. It's so peaceful and formulaic...
posted by polyhedron at 8:59 AM on January 22, 2011 [1 favorite]


yes! such a great childhood memory watching both these shows. the universe is yours when you open a book...
posted by wundermint at 9:01 AM on January 22, 2011


(Have they opened that back up yet?)

They auctioned off the props and costumes last spring so I think it's gone for good.
posted by codswallop at 9:11 AM on January 22, 2011


Bummer! The ride portion was cheestastic but walking around the Enterprise and Voyager was still a pretty timeless experience.

Watching the second video: I love the sparkles in the jar of water. Old school SFX for the win!
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 9:13 AM on January 22, 2011


John Locke was an Admiral?!
posted by andreaazure at 9:13 AM on January 22, 2011


They auctioned off the props and costumes last spring so I think it's gone for good.

KHAAANN!!
posted by Soliloquy at 9:18 AM on January 22, 2011


Yeah, this also blew my mind as a kid. I think the idea that Geordi was *not really blind* was what did it.
posted by heyforfour at 9:54 AM on January 22, 2011


Oh man, it's KILLING me that I can't watch these vids right now. On the other hand, I'm psyched as hell to watch 'em later tonight, quite possibly while pounding some Romulan Ale. Thank you, spiderskull!

Also obligatory image macro about hull problems
posted by Greg Nog at 10:15 AM on January 22, 2011 [1 favorite]


I can't comment on how awesome this episode is. Not because it's not awesome (it's totally badass), but asking me to pick a favourite episode is like asking me to pick a favourite candy.
posted by spamguy at 10:27 AM on January 22, 2011


I loved that show! Thanks for posting this.
posted by SockyMcPuppet at 10:34 AM on January 22, 2011 [1 favorite]


obligatory image macro about hull problems

It's funny combining Geordi with Jay-Z lyrics. The casting call for LaForge said:

"Please do not submit any 'street' types, as Geordi has perfect diction."
posted by Beardman at 12:15 PM on January 22, 2011


My first girlfriend and I bonded over seeing this episode on TV and remembering it from when we were kids. It's also what made me a Star Trek fan. I think I only ever watched Reading Rainbow after that to see if it was going to be this episode, but never saw it again until that random time in grade 11.
posted by Space Coyote at 2:26 PM on January 22, 2011


I loved Reading Rainbow and Trek, and I can remember when this episode aired thinking "If somebody as cool as LeVar is into this so very much, I may not be such an outcast." This was a really cool glimpse into what goes on not only in Sci-Fi, but also television production. I can clearly remember trying to make spaceships out of Bic razors or other found items. Thanks so much for posting this. I'm reliving my childhood.

And, yeah, I remember him from Roots and other things, but Reading Rainbow and TNG are stuck in my brain forever, and I hope they never leave.
posted by Clinging to the Wreckage at 3:15 PM on January 22, 2011


I miss both of these shows.
posted by Rarebit Fiend at 5:51 PM on January 22, 2011


That always was my favorite episode of Reading Rainbow.
posted by IndigoRain at 11:48 PM on January 22, 2011


The irony - which was immediately apparent to my 11-year-old self - was that you can't spend an entire episode geeking out about the awesomeness of special effects and model spaceships and Hollywood sets, and then stroll down to main engineering, look at the warp core, and turn around and tell the camera, "Y'know, there's something else that can help you explore the universe: Books!"

BULLSHIT! (said my 11-year-old self, to my 11-year-old self, reclining in washed-out jeans in front of the Trinitron, trying to push through the 4:30 slump with a Coke) You just SHOWED ME the best way to explore the universe: A TV show about a goddamned spaceship! Now you want me to use my rinky-dink imagination? For fuck's sake. Sit down and fly the Enterprise!

At any rate, I was never much of a reader.
posted by bicyclefish at 8:55 AM on January 23, 2011 [1 favorite]


bicyclefish --and yet, what turned me from a mild ST fan into a raving Trekkie dressing up like a Romulan for fun was not the tv show, but the dozens of really well written original ST and ST:TNG novels available in the late 80s, early 90s. The stories were longer, the characters more deeply developed -- and the SFX were astounding! It was like they had an unlimited FX budget, and only imagination as the limit.
posted by jb at 9:11 AM on January 23, 2011


It's always interesting to see how much less convincing acting becomes when you take away the lighting and editing
posted by aesacus at 6:43 PM on January 23, 2011


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