I’ve been dreading this day for nearly two years, since Torie and I started this re-watch.
When I first saw “The Way to Eden” as a teen, I thought it was the worst episode ever and vowed never to watch it again. A couple of years later, when the pain had finally faded, I decided to give it another try–surely it wasn’t as bad as I’d remembered. Damn you, selective memory! I found it just as awful as before, and once again I decided never to watch it again. And I blissfully stuck to that promise… until now.
In case anyone thinks I’m exaggerating the sheer pain this episode brings me, I watched it on my laptop so I could record my facial expressions. The accompanying four images sum up my experience better than mere words can, but I hope you’ll drop by The Viewscreen anyway to read Torie’s excellent recap–so much more entertaining than the episode itself!–and share your thoughts on my least favorite hour of Star Trek so our sacrifices won’t have been in vain. (I considered adding the corresponding time codes to the images, but I’ll leave it to you to figure out what horrors elicited these responses.)
I’ve been a bit quiet online recently because I was in the middle of moving. But what better way to celebrate the just-installed Wi-fi in my new apartment than with a quick post? And since it’s Valentine’s Day, I thought I’d point out that my latest Star Trek Re-Watch review, “Requiem for Methuselah,” aired on February 14, 1969. So what did lonely Trekkies see that Friday night?
I guess nothing says “love” more than Captain Kirk forcing his affection on an unfeeling woman–or a reasonable facsimile, as it happens. Sadly, I’m sure some Trekkie dates ended exactly like this. Am I right?
This episode is also notable because Torie and I completely disagreed on its merits, or lack thereof. When you have a moment, take a look at our commentary on The Viewscreen and add your two cents to the discussion!
Also, I hope everyone celebrated today in their preferred fashion! I unpacked boxes, connected our video game consoles to our TV, and watched The Matrix an episode of Smallville.
Today, Torie Atkinson and I released the first installment of Laugh Treks, a free MST3K-like podcast that you can download and sync with bad Star Trek episodes to “make them re-watchable.” Whether you love or hate the original series, we hope our suffering can make even the worst hours of television enjoyable, or at least endurable.
This 51-minute audio file represents roughly six months of work: watching “Spock’s Brain” over and over again, refining the script, recording and editing for many hours, and trying really hard to be funny. We’re sure it will get faster and easier should we delude ourselves into making more of these. In the meantime, we’d appreciate it if you download the file from TheViewscreen.com and try it out. You can sync the audio with free streaming video of the episode online at CBS.com (original | remastered) if you don’t already own the DVD. If you’re still dubious, you can also check out the trailer first.
We’d love to hear your feedback, and please please please spread the word through your blogs and social media!
There are a couple of exciting things happening over at The Viewscreen today! First up is our weekly Star Trek Re-Watch with my review of “That Which Survives,” with commentary by Torie Atkinson. The moral of the episode is the only thing better than one Lee Meriwether is three of her–which makes more sense than anything else in the episode and at least makes it worth seeing.
But Torie and I are even more thrilled to present a sneak preview of a secret project we’ve been working on for a while. If you like making fun of Star Trek, particularly the bad episodes, we hope you’ll enjoy this. We’ll talk more about it next week, but in the meantime please check out the trailer below and spread the link through the social media of your choice!
I wasn’t going to do a 2010 review of my accomplishments because it’s a lot of work to recap everything and I’d rather spend my limited free time building toward an even better year. (If I had a New Year’s Resolution, it would be to blog more frequently.) But a lot of people are doing it, so I figured I can at least post some highlights you may have missed, in brief. In no particular order, the things I am happiest and proudest of:
I proposed to my wonderful girlfriend of six years in a fairly geeky way, and she said yes! (No surprise that the impending wedding will preoccupy us for much of the first half of 2011.)
One of my favorite and best short stories, “My Father’s Eyes,” was published in Sybil’s Garage No. 7. Even better, this story has been getting favorable comments both online and offline. If you have the opportunity to read it, I’d appreciate it if you considered nominating it for the Nebula or Hugo Awards. I read part of it on Jim Freund’s original Hour of the Wolf radio show on WBAI 99.5 FM with editors and writers from Sybil’s Garage, and it may be dramatized in part in a short promo film for the magazine.
I sold my short story “All the Lonely People” to Shimmer, a magazine I have wanted to be published in since I saw the first issue. It should appear in the next issue, lucky number 13. I read “All the Lonely People” at a New York Review of Science Fiction Reading featuring other members of my writing group, Altered Fluid: Mercurio D. Rivera ( who co-hosted with Jim Freund), N.K. Jemisin, and Devin Poore. I look forward to more people getting to see this one.
I finished the first draft of a contemporary YA novel, tentatively titled Untwinned (formerly known as Birthright), which I hope to revise sometime this year, after I finish the current revision of Who We Used to Be.
I read 55+ published books, mostly YA, which is far less than I would like. I read and critiqued 6 or 7 unpublished and soon-to-be-published novels too, but I suppose those don’t count, though they certainly had an impact on the time available for other reading.
I helped Ellen Datlow read for the next Year’s Best Horror for Night Shade Books, right up to the wire. Unfortunately I won’t be able to continue reading for future volumes, but I enjoyed working with her a lot over the last few years and I think my writing improved from exposure to such a wide range of short fiction.
Torie Atkinson and I moved our celebrated Star Trek Re-Watch from Tor.com to our own dedicated website, The Viewscreen. This endeavor represents a significant amount of time and effort from both of us, but I enjoy the challenge of maintaining a weekly blog and we’ve built a fantastic community there. I also think our reviews are consistently thoughtful and well written, though I will be honest and admit that I can’t wait for the third season to be over. I know I frequently post about my reviews here, which may not interest everyone, but we’re rather proud of the site and it deserves as much attention as we can attract. We have big plans for it in 2011 too. Some recent reviews: “Wink of An Eye,” “The Empath” (this episode to be avoided at all cost!), and “Elaan of Troyius.”
I may have missed some things, but I’m officially done with 2010 and ready to move on to bigger and better things. Happy New Year!