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April 13, 2022 9:10 AM   Subscribe

 
Where's the musical number? Does Worf play bass or tambourine?
posted by JoeZydeco at 9:17 AM on April 13 [2 favorites]


very cool, but for 5-6 seconds until the video loaded I thought maybe Paramount was launching a new animated TNG show with the voices from the original cast, which would be a terrible idea but would have made me happy.

It's a very high-quality . . . spoof? pastiche? homage? I'm not even sure what to call this, since it seems like it's just a recreation of the last 2 minutes of BOBW Part 1.
posted by skewed at 9:17 AM on April 13 [2 favorites]


It's a near perfect recreation of how bad TAS was to begin with. That's really hilarious. I never would have seen this otherwise, thanks!
posted by hippybear at 9:23 AM on April 13 [8 favorites]


It's always forgotten that Star Trek: The Next Generation: The Animated Series had some of the most high caliber, philosophical, and contemplative Star Trek episodes ever produced.

This was due in part because of the incredibly talented writers working on the series but mostly because Filmation just didn't have the budget to do any action scenes at all.

Such overlooked episodes included "The Innermost Light", "More Measure; More Man", and "[hastily written replacement story for Walter Koeing script about giant people eating worms--Walter's a great guy but we are not producing that one]"
posted by RonButNotStupid at 9:31 AM on April 13 [26 favorites]


Everything about this is perfect. EVERYTHING.

I'm especially liking the random werid beastie at helm that looks like they're on loan from Space Ghost. It really helped them nail the "we couldn't afford to license ALL of the characters" vibe.
posted by phooky at 9:32 AM on April 13 [12 favorites]


Spot on, loved it.
posted by briank at 9:43 AM on April 13 [1 favorite]


I got a kick out of the musical score, too. The big jazzy chord when the Borg cube appears. The strings with a four-bar “THIS IS TENSION” figure that just repeats and repeats.
posted by fantabulous timewaster at 9:46 AM on April 13 [12 favorites]


the random werid beastie at helm

Oh that's a Kzinti, absolutely necessary for any TAS homage. AKA "hey Larry Niven we're in a hurry; could you put some of your existing stories into our Star Trek canon?". The Kzinti doctor is the source for some of the best gags in Lower Decks. I keep hoping a kittyperson will make an appearance in one of the live action shows.
posted by Nelson at 9:51 AM on April 13 [17 favorites]


This lead me down an exciting hole of discovering that Larry Niven wrote a TAS episode that went full on with Kzinti and Slavers and everything. Don't know how I avoided this knowledge for decades.
posted by Zargon X at 10:01 AM on April 13 [5 favorites]


The shot that holds a little too long on motionless Riker while Worf is talking, and then his little eye-flick toward Worf right before the cut at 1'58" is delightful.
posted by uncleozzy at 10:20 AM on April 13 [9 favorites]


I believe the doctor on Lower Decks is a Caitian, not a Kzinti. Perhaps including a Kzinti crew member is an indication that relations between the Federation and the Kzinti Hegemony have improved by the time of Next Generation.
posted by RobotHero at 10:25 AM on April 13 [12 favorites]


My gateway drug to the Star Trek universe was TAS, and this spoof is perfect. I enjoyed every moment.
posted by Gelatin at 10:29 AM on April 13 [2 favorites]


I got a kick out of the musical score, too. The big jazzy chord when the Borg cube appears. The strings with a four-bar “THIS IS TENSION” figure that just repeats and repeats.

If memory serves me correctly, the music is directly from TAS.

(Or Spider-Man? Or both?)
posted by Gelatin at 10:33 AM on April 13 [7 favorites]


I believe the doctor on Lower Decks is a Caitian, not a Kzinti.

Her name is Dr. T’Ana.
posted by chrchr at 10:44 AM on April 13 [6 favorites]


Your memory serves you correctly Gelatin.

score
posted by NervousVarun at 10:46 AM on April 13 [5 favorites]


I loved it. Makes me want to fire up a copy of Macromedia Flash 5 and make my own episode.
posted by alex_skazat at 10:48 AM on April 13 [1 favorite]


As someone who has watched through TAS many times, one of the first things I noticed was that they were using TAS's music. Relatedly, I've always loved the TAS theme.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 10:53 AM on April 13 [3 favorites]


This post has much less to do with Gargoyles than I expected.
posted by mstokes650 at 10:58 AM on April 13 [3 favorites]


Excellent work! Greenlight production!
posted by Capt. Renault at 10:59 AM on April 13 [2 favorites]


Everything about this is perfect. EVERYTHING.

Down to the frontal shot of Riker as he charges the Borg, which could have been lifted directly from one of the many times that animation was reused in TAS.
posted by Gelatin at 11:07 AM on April 13 [9 favorites]


I stand corrected; Dr. T'ana is indeed a Caitian, not a Kzinti. I bet they get spitting-mad at getting confused, I apologize for my unintentional space racism towards the kittypeople of the Alpha Quadrant.

I'm out of my depth here but from what I've read they are related species, sort of like Romulan / Vulcan. Judging by the pictures on Memory Alpha the Kzinti are bigger and more like fierce lions, the Caitians look more like sweet pussycats. Although that may also be a gender variation. I think the kittyperson at the helm in the video in this post is meant to look exactly like the TAS Kzinti.

I'm also delighted to report that Caitians were in Star Trek Into Darkness as the twins Kirk wakes up in bed with. Kittypeople in live Trek! Unfortunately they mostly look like hot human women with a slightly bumpy neck. They have no fur or other feline characteristics except a tail.. Perhaps these Caitians were infected with the Klingon augment virus.
posted by Nelson at 11:17 AM on April 13 [1 favorite]


There's a live-action take on M'Ress in the fan-film Walking Bear, Running Wolf
posted by RobotHero at 11:28 AM on April 13 [2 favorites]


There is a Kzin in Lower Decks. In the episode where Boimler joins a group looking to get promoted, the Kzin gives him posture advice. When he slouches, he looks exactly like they did in TAS.
posted by Spike Glee at 11:39 AM on April 13 [5 favorites]


Lower Decks should go hard-meta and do an entire episode in this animation style.
posted by briank at 11:51 AM on April 13 [10 favorites]


(or, even more LD-like, just one character in this style, and then make tons of jokes about it)
posted by briank at 11:52 AM on April 13 [6 favorites]


Lower Decks has included several alien races from TAS that would've been too difficult to show in live-action Star Trek.

Also, Lower Decks cosplay
posted by cheshyre at 12:13 PM on April 13


Hot take: I'd rather watch this than Picard.
posted by Faint of Butt at 12:36 PM on April 13 [9 favorites]


For reasons, I still have an audible ringer on my phone. I'm now tempted to change the tune to a clip of the TAS 'tension music'*.
DA! NaNaa' duhnanananana! DA! NaNaa duhnanananana...

*which I feel like was also reused in either the Filmation Tarzan or Flash Gordon (or both).
posted by bartleby at 1:01 PM on April 13 [3 favorites]


One of my favorite aspects of this are the magenta parts of the Borg outfits, and the Borg cube itself. One of the legendary screw-ups of Filmation is that they made parts of the TOS Klingon outfit pink, also all the tribbles.

And yeah, despite the TAS episodes being done for $47 and a milk crate of mismatched returnable soda bottles, they had some great aspects to them: the backgrounds often looking like the semi-surreal classic SF paperback covers from the 50s-70s, more non-humanoid aliens (including the navigator Arex), and sheer creativity in concept and execution. We did a rewatch of the series on FanFare, check it out!
posted by Halloween Jack at 1:18 PM on April 13 [12 favorites]


A Guitar Player magazine from sometime in the late 80's had an article/interview with a session musician (possibly titled "Cartoon Guitar"), and the guitarist mentioned the kind of guidance written on the sheet music for the cartoons, like "Bad Guys Winning". Immediately put me in mind of the recurring musical themes in the shows I watched, animated and otherwise. You could probably pick out what episode of Star Trek the original series was on if all you could hear was the music. The "Amok Time" Spock fighting Kirk theme is possibly as iconic as the chant of the soldiers marching into the castle of the Wicked Witch of the West.
posted by coppertop at 1:33 PM on April 13 [2 favorites]


So who's backing my startup: Filmation Filter?

This handy app takes whatever video you've got, and turns it into 70s/80s Filmation. Adds the music, too.
posted by polecat at 1:55 PM on April 13 [9 favorites]


This handy app takes whatever video you've got, and turns it into 70s/80s Filmation. Adds the music, too.

This is kind of like learning that no one put wheels on suitcases until like 50 years ago. Once you've heard the idea, not only can you never go back to the way things were before, but you can't believe no one thought of it a hundred years earlier. Why is this not an Instagram filter? It could be right next to sepia-tone. It wouldn't be that hard to do from the technology side. Hell, we'd launch it with Filmation as a proof-of-concept, and then start adding styles from anime and mid-century Disney.

Just tell me where to send my money, polecat.
posted by Mayor West at 2:04 PM on April 13 [2 favorites]


Can't they already do cartoon tracing on photos automatically? All you'd have to do is really stylize that to be a Filmation of the subject, and then VERY limited rotoscoping to get the animation.

I think it's entirely doable as a phone app, desktop, whatever. Back in 2000 when The Simpsons Movie came out, they had a "Simpsonize Me" website where you could upload a photo and the algorithm would feed something back at you. I'm sure that tech should be at least 20 years better by now.
posted by hippybear at 2:10 PM on April 13


I want to see what kind of infinite loop you'd get if you applied FilmationFilter to Bakshi's LotR. Rotoscoperotoscoperotoscope.
posted by bartleby at 2:22 PM on April 13 [4 favorites]


In the replies someone linked to this delightful mashup of Shatner's Common People cover and TAS.
posted by confluency at 2:37 PM on April 13 [3 favorites]


The music really clinches it.

(this style will be familiar to anyone who remembers Superfriends-era cartoons)
posted by panama joe at 3:37 PM on April 13


I have a soft spot for the cartoon because it was the first Star Trek I ever saw, since it was rerun on Nickelodeon. I remember my great disappointment when I got to be a teen and found out that Kzinti were only male, at least the ones in public, because all the females were non-sapient and just lay around purring. Larry Niven, issues with women, no, why would you think that?*

Anyway, Filmation is not the best thing I have ever seen, done, or eaten, but it was there for me, like the terrible fantasy novels I also enjoyed, and I appreciate that now.

-----
* Also, my cousin told me as a kid that sci-fi shows were "not for girls," and I pretty much believed him, not because he was the boss of me but because it seemed to be more or less true. But what came on Nickelodeon was definitely for me, I knew that much, and therefore so was Star Trek.
posted by Countess Elena at 3:50 PM on April 13 [5 favorites]


Larry Niven, issues with women, no, why would you think that?

Unfortunately, SOOOO much of the foundational SF and Fantasy was written by really toxic men, often having their own fantasies about how they wanted reality to be re: women into their fiction. I think the one author I sort of respect the most about this starts in the mid-70s. Stephen R Donaldson has a main character who rapes a woman less than 100 pages into the first book into what would eventually become a 10 book series. HOWEVER, that rape, that moment of violence, is a moment of evil out of which springs all of the opportunities and machinations for the Big Giant Final Boss to weave his horribleness across 3 series. It's a horrible moment, and yes, the hero of a fantasy series should not be doing that. But, the ramifications of that are felt, not just across a few generations, but across thousands of years. It's a really interesting metaphor about this, and one that isn't recognized by many who read the series.

But yes, so many bad negative things encountered in older SF. It's sad that it is SO heavily foundational that is regarded as Classic Literature and so it continues to be consumed, often with zero context being provided. If Dickens were that problematic with women, I doubt he'd still be around today.
posted by hippybear at 4:12 PM on April 13 [4 favorites]


So who's backing my startup: Filmation Filter?

This would be a must for that.
posted by JHarris at 4:23 PM on April 13


Oh, this was so good.

Suddenly it's around 1976 and I'm in the local public library's basement. Every Saturday they show movies, mostly for kids. I watched original Flash Gordon there, and Voyage Beneath the Sea. And the Star Trek animated series. I can see the aliens and hear the music again.

And also remember the cold, granite? floor of the Half Hollow Hills Public Library, and see the helpful librarians.
posted by doctornemo at 5:35 PM on April 13 [3 favorites]


And yeah, despite the TAS episodes being done for $47 and a milk crate of mismatched returnable soda bottles

And I bet they could have even done it with just the mismatched crate of soda bottles with the only real difference being half the voices would've been performed by Lou Scheimer hiding behind two or three different pseudonyms in the credits.

I am endlessly amused and impressed by Filmation. Their output was just so....awful and cheap and crassly commercial and yet for decades they effectively produced original animation in a medium few others even paid attention to (television), created stories and characters which were formative for a generation of children, and they were run by a guy who was so committed to unionization he picketed his own studio (also his father punched Hitler in the face).
posted by RonButNotStupid at 7:54 AM on April 14 [6 favorites]


One of the legendary screw-ups of Filmation is that they made parts of the TOS Klingon outfit pink, also all the tribbles.

The Kzinti's uniforms and ships were pink too. According to the Memory Alpha wiki, the colorist *really* liked pink, and the director was colorblind.
posted by jabah at 10:59 AM on April 14 [2 favorites]


From jabah's link to Memory Alpha:
"He was also referred to by many people there as the purple and green guy. You'll see it in a lot of scenes, purple and green used together – that was one of his preferences. He made dragons red, the Kzintis' costumes pink. It was all Irv Kaplan's call. He wasn't listening to anyone else when he picked colors or anything."
Filmation: Hell yeah.

The entire studio is like the Roger Corman of animation. You want 65 animated 22 minute episodes featuring your about-to-launch toyline for weekday syndication? We'll get them to you by next Thursday. Cash up front. No refunds.
posted by RonButNotStupid at 12:32 PM on April 14 [6 favorites]


Still waiting for the Groovy Goolies crossover.
posted by whuppy at 12:44 PM on April 14 [2 favorites]


Now, hold on. I won't go through every comment but I hope someone at least remembered that this was a spoof on the original Star Trek Animated Series from 1973. It was on par with other Hanna Barbera's shows of it's ilk. I'm I losing it?
posted by hairless ape at 3:29 PM on April 14


Several comments above referenced the original TAS.
posted by mbrubeck at 3:32 PM on April 14 [1 favorite]


Literally the third comment below the FPP.
posted by hippybear at 3:57 PM on April 14 [1 favorite]


Let's make no mistake, Hanna Barbera was putting out similarly cheap animation in this period, but Star Trek was animated by Filmation, also known for Fat Albert, Flash Gordon, and He-Man.

And Batman!
posted by polecat at 8:26 PM on April 14 [2 favorites]


Also there were no wheels on suitcases because people who traveled expected other people to carry their bags. Their many, many bags.

Also trunks.

Also, TAS sucked but it was so much better than no Trek at all. How is it that the time between 1968 and 1979 seemed to be about 80 years long?
posted by allthinky at 6:52 AM on April 15


Now, hold on. I won't go through every comment but I hope someone at least remembered that this was a spoof on the original Star Trek Animated Series from 1973. It was on par with other Hanna Barbera's shows of it's ilk . I'm I losing it

I did go through them. Of the 46 comments written before you, 21 of them explicitly reference Filmation, Lou Schemier, and/or The Animated Series. Many of the others are written in ways which make it seem likely that they know it; no comments are written in a way that implies the poster DIDN'T watch it.
posted by Xiphias Gladius at 10:33 AM on April 15 [1 favorite]


How is it that the time between 1968 and 1979 seemed to be about 80 years long?

Relative life percentages. Based on you remembering 1968, you were likely born ~1964. In 1979, as a 15 year old, 1968 was about 2/3rd of your life ago. In 2022, 2/3rds of your life means almost 40 years ago. Which isn't 80, I'll admit, but is why the length of time between 1968 and 1979 feels more like the length of time between 1983 and 2022.
posted by fings at 11:37 AM on April 15


This is kind of like learning that no one put wheels on suitcases until like 50 years ago.

To clarify, we did have wheeled suitcases in the '70s & '80s - they just weren't very good wheels.

Picture your typical large suitcase in a landscape orientation. A small plastic wheel, maybe a centimeter wide and an inch in diameter sits in brackets at each corner. If you're lucky the front wheels pivot, but the back wheels are fixed. No extending handles, just a clip-on strap. When pulled by this leash, the suitcase tended to fall over rather than roll, especially if any kind of turn was involved.

Because college exams were *after* winter break, I often packed my textbooks. By the time I graduated, that suitcase sat on four semicircles.
posted by cheshyre at 5:00 PM on April 15


Trek Culture's Sean Ferrick interviews Justin and they get into the weeds.

Justin talks about the project on his own channel (with a little bonus footage.)
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 9:37 PM on April 18 [1 favorite]


amazing
posted by firstdaffodils at 10:33 PM on April 18


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