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Posts Tagged ‘imaginative fiction’

Sulu (George Takei): I’ll save you, fair maiden!
Uhura (Nichelle Nichols): Sorry, neither.

Nichelle Nichols, who passed away a week ago today, first entered show business as a singer, and she performed in several first-season episodes; this video features “Beyond Antares” from “The Conscience of the King”.  The links above it were provided by Dave Krueger; Cop Crisis; Franklin Harris; Scott Greenfield; Franklin again, and Furrygirl; Mike Siegel; and Kevin Wilson, in that order.

From the Archives

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We’d never put her away in a cupboard.  –  Char Grey

One of the all-time great movie villains has died, just a few days short of his 81st birthday; I thought a retrospective of his work was in order, but this is just a small sample.  The links above the video were provided by Franklin Harris, Mike Siegel (x2), Jesse Walker, Mirriam Zary, and Cop Crisis (x2).

From the Archives

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Diary #630

My road trip was apparently more fatiguing than I had at first realized.  On Wednesday and Thursday, I had to catch up on chores, and on Friday I had to do two weeks’ worth of grocery shopping because we were out of quite a few things. Then on Saturday I found myself completely out of energy, despite oversleeping every day since my return; I had a couple of errands to run, but after that I decided to start my edibles early and soak in the hot tub, then catch up on my writing.  It was Sunday before I found myself mostly back to normal, and I put in a good afternoon installing flashings on the cottage eaves in preparation for the gutters, which I plan to start tomorrow as it’s supposed to be unusually sunny and hot today and much less so the rest of the week.  Anyhow, though it may seem a bit silly, the high point of last week was receiving in the mail a disc of the first season of Professor Balthazar, which I’ve awaited for some time.  These cartoons were created by a Croatian animator in the late ’60s, and I saw them as part of the ABC Saturday morning show Curiosity Shop in the early ’70s; I only found out recently that they were only licensed for that show, and could be obtained separately (sadly, it appears no copies of Curiosity Shop have survived).  So I ordered the first disc and put the other two on my Amazon wishlist, and after several months of delay it finally arrived on Thursday.  I’m pleased to say it was every bit as sweet and charming as I remember it from half a century ago, and I’m looking forward to getting the others soon.  If you’re unfamiliar with the Professor and his whimsical adventures, have a taste at his YouTube page.

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The blood goes to your brain, whatever brain you have.  –  Larry Storch

The obits of Larry Storch aren’t mentioning that he also had a long career as a voice actor, starting as a stage impressionist, then moving on to voice Koko the Clown & other characters in the early ’60s revival of Out of the Inkwell before moving on to Tennessee Tuxedo and His Tales.  He later did work for Depatie/Freleng and Filmation, notably Drac in Groovie Goolies.  The links above the video were provided by Walter Olson, Franklin Harris, Cop Crisis, Jesse Walker (x2), Cop Crisis again, and J.D. Tuccille, in that order.

From the Archives

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Diary #627

When I was a wee lass, I tried never to miss the Sunday Morning Movie, a local TV institution for many years which generally featured old monster movies.  It was the venue in which I first saw the Godzilla movies, It Came from Outer Space, and many others, including this one, which was among my favorites as a child.  Looking back on it now, I think what drew me to it most was Ross Martin’s sympathetic and touching portrayal of the brilliant humanitarian who becomes a monster; I’ve always thought Martin was very underrated as an actor, and while looking at his IMDb page recently (while we were watching The Wild, Wild West), I saw this flick listed and realized that he was the actor whose performance had so appealed to me in childhood.  So I added it to my Amazon wishlist, and a reader sent it to me last week; I’m keen to watch it again not for the rather melodramatic Frankenstein-derived plot, but to watch Martin’s performance again through adult eyes.  And, truth be told, because I’m really very sentimental and it’ll be fun to revisit a slice of those long-gone days.

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Last week I wrote about how much I appreciate my readers’ generosity, and I got ample proof of it again before the week was out.  On Wednesday I drove into Seattle as I do every three weeks, and I discovered this collection waiting for me (along with Vangelis’ last album) from a reader who often gets me nice things (and the note he included gave me an extra smile).  Then the next day, I published a request for help with travel funds (because the skyrocketing price of fuel and everything else has really exacerbated my typical summer & travel anxieties), and within hours I had received about 70% of what I estimate the trip will cost me.  And let me tell you, there is nothing as good for anxiety as feeling supported and cared for!  As I sit at my desk writing this, there’s a dramatic difference in my emotional balance from when I wrote the request just a week ago; I feel calm and I’m looking forward to the journey, whereas last week I was trying to decide whether to rethink the whole thing.  So thank all of y’all for being so amazing; it’s no exaggeration to say that y’all saved my whole trip.

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Every so often I like to remind my readers and patrons how important your support is to me.  In these uncertain times, it’s really reassuring to know that my writing is important enough to many of you that you choose to do more than simply throw a compliment my way now and again.  For some of you, support takes the form of a subscription, money you send every month to help me pay my bills; in lean times (such as right after tax season) those small amounts add up and keep me in the black.  Others prefer to send me nice things from my Amazon wishlist; I try to keep it populated with lots of things I really want, rather than just expensive trinkets and designer gewgaws.  Take this book a reader (who prefers to remain anonymous) sent me a couple of months ago; it’s a collection of early comic strips from one of the creators of the genre.  It’s something I’ve wanted for a long time, but since it’s out of print I couldn’t justify the rather steep price, but since one of my admirers sent it as a present I could enjoy it without guilt (as I’m currently enjoying the second volume, received from a different reader just last week – you know who you are, and thank you!)  So whether you prefer to send me practical help to put food on the table, or to send “hyacinths to feed my soul”, please know that “appreciation” is far too mild a word to describe my feelings of gratitude to all of y’all.

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As I’ve mentioned before, Star Trek was my first love.  It was the first TV show I appreciated on a level beyond merely watching, the first one that really made me think about things, the first one I cared about enough to actually learn about.  It was also the first one I “collected”; what that meant to me in those pre-home video days was, I asked for a copy of Bjo Trimble’s Star Trek Concordance (yes, the picture is of my copy, which I of course still own) and read it cover to cover, noting which episodes I’d seen and which I hadn’t.  I also collected James Blish’s episode adaptations, and came to know some of the stories in print years before I ever got to see them on the tube.  I knew the show backwards and forwards, and by the time I bought the DVD collections in the Oughts I had probably already seen every episode over a dozen times (and that doesn’t even count the ones I listened to on my TV band radio).  So as you might expect, I tend to recognize actors who were on Star Trek when they appear in other 1960s and ’70s TV shows.  In fact, it’s part of what I enjoy about watching those shows.  I don’t just mean the regular cast, though of course it’s always fun to catch a Twilight Zone or Outer Limits with a pre-Trek Shatner, Nimoy, or Doohan.  No, I mean that when we recently re-watched The Wild, Wild West, at least half of the episodes had an actor or actress who prompted me to say to Grace, “Hey, that’s the girl who played __________ in [episode X].”  And now that we’ve moved on to Mission: Impossible (Trek‘s sister show, produced by Desilu on the next soundstage over), it’s even more so; there are few episodes that don’t have a guest star who appeared on Trek (and I’m not even counting Nimoy’s appearance as a regular in later seasons).  Sometimes it’s more than one, and we recently watched one in which there were no fewer than five.  I don’t really understand why it pleases me so to recognize the faces (or voices); I reckon it’s just the pleasure of familiarity, like going back to one’s home town.  But just in case there was any doubt in your mind about my level of nerdiness, I hope this post has rectified that.

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That was stupid.  –  Chase Bebak-Miller, to his victim

Last week, on my way back from Seattle, I listened to the Little Shop of Horrors soundtrack.  That may have been a mistake because I had a tooth pulled the next day, and I kept giggling because this song kept going through my head.  The links above the video were provided by Mike Siegel, Franklin Harris, Cop Crisis (x3), and Radley Balko, in that order.

From the Archives

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Diary #621

When I arrived at my Seattle apartment on Sunday, I found a package waiting for me from Amazon, courtesy of regular reader & gift-sender Robin Aguilar.  It contained Joe Satriani’s latest disc, plus the DVD of the space vampire movie Lifeforce (1985) and this set of a 1977 TV show most of y’all have probably never heard of.  Those who weren’t born yet then may find it hard to believe, but before the debut of Star Wars that same year, science fiction had been very out of fashion since Star Trek went off the air in 1969.  And in those pre-home video days, that meant often the only science fiction shows available for viewing were Trek reruns and old movies in syndication packages broadast mostly on Saturday afternoons and late at night.  There were certainly a few adventure shows featuring sci-fi elements, such as The Six Million Dollar Man, but new straight-out sci-fi series were rare and generally short-lived.  This one lasted only ten episodes, but I liked it very much and had a bit of a crush on Katie Saylor, a leggy blonde who played the Atlantean woman Liana.  Given that I haven’t seen this show in 45 years, I have no idea how I’ll appreciate it through adult eyes, but thanks to Robin I’m going to have a chance to find out!

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