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Apr 042014

star-trek-city-on-the-edge-of-foreverby Michael Brown, staff writer

“The City on the Edge of Forever,” Harlan Ellison’s critically acclaimed Star Trek episode, will be released as a five-part comic book miniseries by IDW Publishing, and told in its entirety as Star Trek: Harlan Ellison’s The City on the Edge of Forever: The Original Teleplay. The classic, fan-favorite episode was originally written by Ellison as part of a much larger story arc, but the episode was edited and changed before it was filmed, and is much different than Ellison’s original vision. Few people have had the opportunity to see Ellison’s original teleplay, but the IDW miniseries will feature Ellison’s complete and unedited story, with Ellison himself serving as Executive Producer.

“The City on the Edge of Forever” first aired on CBS in April 1967 as part of Star Trek’s first season, in which Kirk and Spock pursue a dangerous criminal into the 1930s, jeopardizing their own futures in the process. Star Trek fans have always regarded the episode as the greatest Trek episode of all time, with TV Guide adding it to their 100 Best TV Episodes of All Time, as well as one of its 100 Most Memorable Moments in TV History. But as highly regarded as the episode is, IDW Chief Creative Officer/Editor-in-Chief Chris Ryall says “It ain’t nuthin’ compared to what Ellison did in his original teleplay ... even to fans who have that beloved episode memorized.”

Giving the teleplay the comic book treatment are writers Scott Tipton and David Tipton, who are already widely known by fans of IDW’s Star Trek universe. J.K. Woodward, who painted the interior art on the epic Star Trek: The Next Generation/Doctor Who miniseries, will be handling the art here, as well. Cover art for each issue will be drawn by Juan Ortizwith variant covers drawn by movie poster artist Paul Shipper.

Regarding the upcoming miniseries and having his original story told in full, Harlan Ellison told IDW, “It was a superlative joy of my long life to have worked with Leonard Nimoy … and an equally heart-happy joy to be working with J.K. and the Tipton Bros … on this long-awaited visual of my (humbly, I say it) brilliant original City …”

This will be the first-ever comic book adaptation of Harlan Ellison’s original teleplay, and Star Trek fans will finally get to see it the way very few have ever seen it before.

Star Trek: Harlan Ellison’s City on the Edge of Forever: The Original Teleplay #1 from IDW Publishing is scheduled to land in comic book shop shelves in June.




Mar 262014

by Lisa M.A. Winters, contributing writer

Eighty-three years ago, a little Jewish baby was born in the West End of Boston; he grew up to first lead us to the Lost Tribe of Israel, then on to the immanent feminine aspect of Diety Herself. Not bad at all for the son of a Ukrainian barber, eh?

Leonard Nimoy started in local theater very young, just eight years old, singing and acting, surrounded and supported by a rich multi-cultural neighborhood. He earned enough money to go to California for more acting classes, served in the United States Army for two years, then started a steady series of roles in film and television — some more questionable than others (Zombies of the Stratosphere) — interspersed with night-jobs to keep his young family fed.

Photo by Krypton Radio contributing writer, Nur Hussein.

Photo by Krypton Radio contributing writer, Nur Hussein.

Star Trek came along in 1966, and although finding the way to Spock took a little effort, the part was  rich ground for Nimoy’s art and craft. He said about Spock, “He was the embodiment of the outsider, like the immigrants who surrounded me in my early years. How do you find your way as the alien in a foreign culture? Where does your identity and dignity come from? And how do you make a contribution?” He has never stopped making a contribution since.

More recently, his other art has taken an equal place with his acting: photography. Nimoy’s work has been displayed in major museums and caused controversy and admiration. Secret Selves, The Full Body Project and Shekhina have all stirred deep feelings in those who have viewed the photographs.

Back in 2012, Nimoy spoke at the commencement ceremonies of College of Fine Arts at Boston University. Along with fond memories of his now-vanished childhood neighbourhood, lessons he’s learned and some wry observations, he summed up with, “The secret of a long healthy career in the arts is a successful walk on the razor’s edge,” then left the graduates (and us) with one heartfelt plea. “Give us the best of your art … illuminate our lives … And please, please, for the sake of our culture, for the sake of mankind, don’t create any more reality TV shows.”

Happy birthday, Leonard Nimoy. LLAP.

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Mar 222014
William Shatner, Canadian actor, in a costume, smiling in a publicity portrait issued for the US television series, 'Star Trek', circa 1968. The science fiction series starred Shatner as 'Captain James T Kirk'.

On March 22, William Shatner will be 345 in dog years. That’s pretty good no matter what species you are. Although one of science fiction media’s most famous actors has plenty of bragging rights, one of his favorite claims might be as the “father” of a long series of Doberman Pinscher dogs.

youngShatnerWithCorvetteAndDogEver since the fandom first became acquainted with the man behind Captain Kirk, he has had Dobermans. From the “special underwear” theatre story from Star Trek Lives, through hiding Leonard Nimoy’s bicycle behind the Doberman guarding Shatner’s dressing room, to posting video and pictures of the latest Shatner family babies on Twitter, William Shatner’s life has always held an undercurrent of the handsome working/guardian dogs.


He does not limit himself to canine quadrupeds, of course. AHEAD With Horses (Accelerated Habilitation Education And Development), which uses horses for therapy with children who are medically disadvantaged, lists his Hollywood Charity Horse Show as their very first sponsor. The Show itself is being sponsored by and Wells Fargo among other corporations, allowing the proceeds to benefit not just this one charity but several. “You can’t watch these kids without knowing you have to help, somehow.” This year’s help will be on April 26 at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center.

Before that big event, though, Shatner will be celebrating his birthday in, of all places, the middle of a convention. Perhaps the folks at the Mad Monster Party will present their stellar guest with a birthday cake, for all of us wishing him a happy 83rd or 345th.

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Mar 192014

jj-abrams-star-wars-episode-viiby Karina Montgomery, contributing writer

New owner Walt Disney Company and doting parent Lucasfilm have announced that Star Wars: Episode VII will begin principal photography in May of this year. With a December 18, 2015 release date, director J.J. Abrams will have his hands full taking the reins of another beloved franchise

What do we know so far?

Not much, but that is to be expected.  We don’t know the real working title, nor do we know the plot.  Abrams is co-writing the script with Lawrence Kasdan (a veteran of the more favored Star Wars films and Raiders of the Lost Ark), and George Lucas is not involved with the script. Abrams’ lens-flare happy cinematographer Daniel Mindel is on board as well.

We do know that the film will be set about 30 years after Return of the Jedi. Disney’s Bob Iger has confirmed that R2D2 will reprise his role.  John Williams is credited as the composer, but whether he will be contributing new music or not is yet to be determined.  The team has been churning out concept art and no doubt ferrying around scripts under lock and key.

 Surely they’ve cast it at least, right?

Casting announcements include Adam Driver from Girls, Ed Speelers from Downton Abbey, John Boyega from Breaking Bad, Jesse Plemons from Friday Night Lights, and theatre actor Matthew James Thomas (Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark) and photographer Ray Fisher. There are rumors of the original cast (by which I mean the 1970s-1980s movies) being involved, but nothing is confirmed.

Keep your taun taun sleeping bag handy, kids – it’s going to be a long wait until we see the next installation of Star Wars.

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