'Star Trek': The original, CGI-ed for your... pleasure?

15354__trek_l_1I urge everyone to remain calm and remember, I am only the messenger: As rumored, the original 79 episodes of Star Trek — a sci fi Pentateuch for many — will return to syndication on Sept. 16. With… CGI revisions. EVERYBODY SIT DOWN, PLEASE. Thank you.

My guess is, even purists will be curious, if not delighted. The team (headed by 18-year Trek design vet Michael Okuda, no mere hired gun) says it took a WWGRD approach, imagining how Gene Roddenberry would’ve approached the show’s design and effects if he’d had access to contemporary technologies. Apparently, we’ll see starbases teeming with people, shimmeringly "realistic" alien landscapes with moving clouds and glittering water surfaces. Also, some old goofs will be fixed, giving the storied imdb.com "Goofs" department a serious workout. Me, I’m just hoping the revisionists find a way to reconcile Shatner’s current toupee with his original hair. I’m a stickler for follicular particulars, as well as silly-sounding sentences. (As well as alliteration.)

Most intriguing/distressing of all, the tidied-up, digi-pimped Trek will also feature a rerecorded version of that famous musical theme. Apparently, a new singer will be doing the famous wail. Please, please let this not be that "new singer."

addCredit(“Star Trek: Kobal Collection”)


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  • L

    If I had a grave, I’d be rolling in it.

  • EO

    This is going to work really well. New spiffy CGI cut together with William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy in their pajamas. Won’t be the least bit incongruous.

  • Karla

    Well, I’ll be a Rrrrrock. Itttttt. Mannnnnnnnn!
    My son and I just watched the entire original series so he could understand the classics, baby. And wow – there were some astonishingly, horrifically bad shows in there. Isn’t it funny how you forget that, Herbert?
    It was actually better earlier on, and Shatner did some beautiful work in the first season. But you could see him change from a person into a personality, and much of his early promise got trampled under the fame and his response to it.
    Thanks for the Shat fix – what a complete original that guy is (gotta love him). Got. Ta.
    But I don’t care how much CGI you throw at the shows in the original series. Because the shining brightness was the acting and the relationships, and not the doodads. Later Star Treks really, really forgot that. Until DS9 and Avery Brooks showed up.

  • brandonk

    I’m a big Trekkie, and I’m intrigued. I’ve never been that into the original series, mostly because the special effects suck. The stories were sometimes stupid, too, but that goes for every Trek. If they do it right, the new CGI could look great. I remember the DS9 episode where they went back to Kirk’s time, as well as the Enterprise episodes that took place in the mirror universe, and things looked great.

  • Spackle

    Pentateuch????? Wow, did you fall asleep on a thesaurus and just decide to use whatever word your drool had pooled onto????
    Hey guys! Its the Sci-Fi First five volumes of the Hebrew holy texts!!! I could have just said bible, but I had to seem witty! Too bad it doesn’t work at all!

  • KC Holt

    I don’t see a problem with it really, its not like they are REPLACING the original episodes *cough*GeorgeLucas*cough* …

  • Winona

    I’m alternately intrigued and horrified. I might watch, but I think I’ll end up wanting the original, purists version – which is why I am waiting until mid-September to purchase the Star Wars films.

  • Tony

    Part of the charm of the original series was its low budget aesthetic, a less-is-more, make-do-with-what-you-got approach that gave it much of its humanity. Adding new, up-to-date effects might work if done subtly, but there is a danger that the effects might distract from the story and characters. Star Wars fans learned that lesson the hard way.

  • Howard

    Scott, mad props for working in Pentateuch (Yeah, he could have said Bible, but this was cooler. Plus, he explained his fondness for language further down) and the phrase “follicular particulars”. Very nice.
    I would think Lucas’ “Not-so-special” editions would have shown these people that we don’t want our icons mucked with. Clean them up, add in the content removed for syndication, but give us the real thing.

  • William K. Scurry Jr.

    Count us in, love… watch Robert Wise’s director’s cut of “ST:TMP” for the old actors alongside CGI revisions. Very successful.

  • jini

    Umm….Doesn’t the Prime Directive say something about NOT interfering with primitive cultures?
    This is going to be bad.

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