August 9th, 2010

spockmonkey

The Making of Star Trek by Stephen E. Whitfield & the Great Bird of the Galaxy

I picked up this book at an estate sale recently. The deceased was a big Trek and Clifford Simak fan, but clearly his interest in SF had peaked in the 60s.

Anyway, the book is kind of a neat look at Trek from early on and from the inside. The book was published in 1968, between seasons two and three of TOS. So although the show even then had a rabid following -- with fans helping to ensure a third season, though NBC consigned it to the Friday Night Death Slot for season 3 -- Star Trek wasn't yet Star Trek.

The book is also unique in that it focuses a great deal on the nuts and bolts of developing and producing a TV show. Sure, it's probably 45 years out of date, but it's interesting, and maybe still valuable. Lots of original memos are quoted, and some design schematics, call sheets, production logs, the show's 'bible', expense sheets, etc. all go into the mix. The book is much more about making a TV show than it is about the show itself, though there are certainly interesting tidbits along the way. One slightly alarming thing is the way that everything that is a direct quote from Roddenberry is in ALL CAPS, AS THOUGH THE VOICE OF THE METRONS WERE SPEAKING.
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