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Leonard Nimoy speaks out: Why Spock approved of LSD and ‘dirty movies’

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Throughout his life, the actor Leonard Nimoy appeared to be always open to discussing nearly everything in his life. He answered questions frankly and honestly on subjects as diverse as space travel, photography, or his own personal tastes in music or books. He answered these questions in a seemingly calm and rational way. His ability to do so was most possibly down to the very real personality changes brought on by playing Mr. Spock on hit TV series Star Trek. This was something Nimoy touched upon in an interview with TV Star Parade magazine in January 1968, where he discussed his thoughts about adult movies and the liberating potential of psychoactive drugs.

In the article “Leonard Nimoy Speaks Out on LSD, Religion and Dirty Movies—an unblushingly honest confession as told to Roger Elwood,” the actor was interviewed in the Polo Lounge of the Beverly Hills Hotel. He is described as being “relaxed and comfortable” and sipping from a “glass of ginger liquid.” Who knows what was in this amber nectar but the main interest here was the actor’s comments on LSD and “dirty movies,” as Elwood wrote:

And so is the topic of LSD. The self-hallucinatory drug. The ticket to a trip somewhere at the farthest reaches of man’s intellect. Or so its proponents say without telling you of the dangers, the obstacles on the road to mental Utopia.

Leonard is especially outspoken on the subject, apparently one to which he has devoted a great deal of time and serious thought.

“It is a useful tool in the hands of proper medical experts,” he told me. “I am convinced, as a result of reports that I have read, that it will bring about some very useful effects in certain instances and under suitable and necessary medical controls. However, as it is being used by so many young people as a means of escape and personal investigation without control, I consider it rather dangerous.”

But Mr. Spock wasn’t finished there.

He paused, obviously thinking of his own children and hoping that, as they got older, they wouldn’t be similarly imperiled.

Then, clearing his throat, he continued, “There have been too many unsettling reports of young people using it without the necessary supervision and having difficulty recuperating from the trip. In many cases, I believe that young people resort to drugs with the excuse that it will help develop their minds, whereas they haven’t done the necessary work involved for themselves so that this could happen.

“The point is—they are looking for a drug or pill which will do the work for them, and this attitude in life is disastrous whether LSD is involved or not. The drugs can, I understand, be properly used, when the essential mental climate and conditions are already present—however, I believe in natural development processes of the mind. The creative process for me has always operated best at the very conscious level—in other words, only when I’m in complete control of my own thinking do I feel that I am creating at my best.”

As a sidebar, it’s worth noting that Nimoy was so in “control” of his personal life during the making of the original Star Trek series that he became (by his own admission) an alcoholic and ended up in rehab. This may have been as a result of Nimoy’s identifying with the character of Mr. Spock. He later claimed acting Spock twelve hours, five days a week, impacted on his personality making him more rational but less emotional.

More from Mr. Spock, after the jump….

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Posted by Paul Gallagher
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05.05.2017
09:04 am
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You can now own your very own plush Tribble from ‘Star Trek’
04.24.2017
09:12 am
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This is one of those dumb things that I’ve always wanted to own: A Tribble! Why not? “The Trouble with Tribbles”—with a plotline about a rapidly reproducing alien creature causing headaches for the crew of the Starship Enterprise—is the 44th episode from Star Trek which was first broadcast in the United States on December 29, 1967. Apparently over 500 Tribbles were made for this memorable episode. Seems like there would’ve needed a lot more of them, doesn’t it?

As an ode to the fuzzy creature, Quantum Mechanix has recreated the Tribble in plush form. Now you can’t possibly get just one as you’d need to surround yourself with quite a few for the full Tribble effect.

Each one comes in a special container that features Tribble Tips and is designed to keep it tidy and safe in the presence of Klingons

The Tribble is $17.99 + free shipping here.

I also found a Tribble that makes sounds of cooing and agitation! It comes in a light brown and sells for $29.99 here.


 

 
via Boing Boing

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
Bank of Canada urges ‘Star Trek’ fans to stop ‘Spocking’ their fivers
That ‘Star Trek’ episode where Jack the Ripper takes over the Enterprise so everyone gets super high
Great moments in ‘Star Trek’: Captain Kirk and the stalagmite dildo weapon

Posted by Tara McGinley
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04.24.2017
09:12 am
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The space burial of Dr. Timothy Leary and ‘Star Trek’ creator Gene Roddenberry


 
Twenty years ago, the perihelion of the Hale-Bopp comet coincided with the mass suicide of the Heaven’s Gate cult, whose members believed death was a sure way of hitching a ride on a spaceship. They put on new pairs of Nike Decades before eating phenobarbital and tying bags around their heads. Among the dead in Rancho Santa Fe was Thomas Nichols, whose sister Nichelle played Lt. Uhura on Star Trek. “He made his choices, and we respect those choices,” she told Larry King.
 

 
One month later, a Pegasus rocket carrying the remains of Dr. Timothy Leary, Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry, physicist and space colonization advocate Gerard O’Neill, Operation Paperclip beneficiary Krafft Ehricke, and 20 other former space enthusiasts launched from the Canary Islands.

More after the jump…

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Posted by Oliver Hall
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03.23.2017
08:54 am
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That time the ‘Star Trek’ crew took on Nazis from outer space
11.28.2016
02:37 pm
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Captain James T. Kirk (played by actor William Shatner) and Mr. Spock (played by actor Leonard Nimoy) in a scene from ‘Patterns of Force,’ show during season two of the original ‘Star Trek’ television series.
 

“You should make a very convincing Nazi.”

—Mr. Spock complementing Captain James T. Kirk’s snazzy Nazi uniform in the 1968 ‘Star Trek’ episode ‘Patterns of Force.’

 
If just reading the title of this post gave you a sudden case of the “what the fucks” then you better sit down, because if you’ve never seen the episode titled “Patterns of Force” from the original Star Trek television series (season two, episode #21), then your mind is about to be blown.

Like many of you, I spent a bit too much time on my couch last week watching movies. I happened to catch a sweet Star Trek marathon on the tube that was in the midst of showing some groovy early episodes. After thoroughly enjoying the amusing “I, Mudd” (season two, episode eight) I decided to see what other episodes were coming up and caught an image of Spock dressed like a Nazi. Was I drunk? Yeah, sure, probably a little, but my eyes weren’t playing tricks on me. As the episode unfolded things only got weirder.

“Patterns of Force” was originally broadcast back in February of 1968. Just a bit over 20 years since the end of WWII making it reasonable to assume that people who had opposed the Nazis during that time, or who were, you know, survivors of the Holocaust, were probably sitting down to watch one of the most popular shows on television. Only this time beloved intergalactic odd couple Captain James T. Kirk and his adroit Vulcan pal Mr. Spock (along with Dr. McCoy) end up on planet Ekos, a place that has embraced every aspect of Nazi culture and German society from the 1940s. Shortly after the episode begins we even get treated to images of Adolf Hitler and the ugliness of Nazi Germany in an authentic newsreel that is playing on a video monitor on the streets on Ekos. “Patterns of Force” plays the Nazi card to the hilt utilizing images of swastikas, actors costumed in Nazi-esque uniforms, and plenty of those nasty “seig heil” salutes we’re once again seeing thanks to some of the alt-reich supporters of our president-elect. Dialog for the show included the use of the word “Fuhrer” which was used to address Ekos’ fictional leader, the mundane sounding “John Gill.” 

It’s worth mentioning—as I know that many of our readers are history buffs—that there are several inconsistencies with the Nazi costumes that would have made Lemmy Kilmister cringe. Such as the black “Gestapo” uniforms that were modeled after the garb worn by the Waffen SS in “Patterns of Force” and the fact that you can clearly see the name “Adolf Hitler” embroidered on both McCoy and Kirk’s cuffs during the episode. Which makes little sense to begin with as Hitler didn’t actually exist on Ekos. That said Patterns of Force is nothing short of chilling given the current circumstances we’re all supposed to be “getting used to” here in the U.S. Especially when you consider that the plot line focuses on Ekos’ desire to eliminate inhabitants of neighboring planet “Zeon” who they refer to as “Zeonist pigs.” Sound familiar? Despite the grim parallels to horrific past events and the deeply disturbing ones that are occurring with increasing frequency now, it’s an absolute must see moment of television history which I for one will never be able to scrub out of my mind. Because once you see Mr. Spock dressed up like a member of the SS, you can never unsee it.

And here’s another interesting factoid about “Patterns of Force” that helps reinforce my thoughts about the episode: In 2011 “Patterns of Force” was shown in Germany for the first time since it aired in the U.S. back in 1968. Though it had been released on video in the mid-90’s with German-language dubbing, it had never been shown on television. And even then it was only allowed to air after ten o’clock with a warning that the content should not be viewed by anyone under the age of sixteen. And that was a full 66 years after the end of WWII. I’ve included an array of stills from “Patterns of Force” as well as a short clip from the episode featuring Kirk and Spock trying to figure out how the fuck what happened during WWII could actually be happening again in outer space.

Imagine that...
 

 

Kirk, Spock and McCoy all decked out in their “Adolph Hitler” designer Nazi uniforms.
 
More after the jump…

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Posted by Cherrybomb
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11.28.2016
02:37 pm
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That ‘Star Trek’ episode where Jack the Ripper takes over the Enterprise so everyone gets super high
09.16.2016
09:08 am
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I didn’t want to write this post, but the burden of TV history weighs heavy on my shoulders. The 50th anniversary of Star Trek came and went, and in all the fanfare, I saw no mention of the original series’ single most bizarre episode. Forget the one where they’re back in the 1920s, or the one where they’re at the O.K. Corral with Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday, or the one where Kirk and Spock fight Genghis Khan alongside Abraham Lincoln; this right here is the goods.

Before last night, I hadn’t seen “Wolf in the Fold” for about 30 years. I watched it again to make sure my memory was accurate, and I can confirm that this is without a doubt the most insane episode of Star Trek that ever made it to the screen. It is actually even weirder than I remembered. A space séance is involved.

I don’t want to give away much more of the plot, but you’ll see what I mean if I set it up briefly. Kirk, Bones, and Scotty go whoring on the “hedonistic” planet Argelius II, which looks just like foggy London town. Next thing you know, Scotty’s standing over a dead belly dancer with a bloody knife in his hand. Kirk asks what kind of legal process they have in this jerkwater, when the Prefect, making a grand entrance, declares: 

The law of Argelius is love.

Then comes the Jack the Ripper business and the whole crew getting messy on tranks. And there is so much more I’m deliberately leaving out.

Keep reading after the jump…

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Posted by Oliver Hall
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09.16.2016
09:08 am
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Never mind the Shatner, the ‘Star Trek’ cast member with the golden voice was Nichelle Nichols


 
May the gods eternally bless Rhino Records for so many reasons, but one of that label’s greatest contributions to weird society was the Golden Throats series of compilation albums. It endeavored—and largely succeeded—at bringing wide attention to one of my favorite vinyl collectibles sub-obsessions: celebrities not known for singing who nonetheless and against all reason recorded albums on which they sang, often very, very poorly. Adding to the kitsch appeal of the phenomenon, these albums were usually lounge or easy listening, and were often recorded in total earnest.

Notably, key Star Trek cast members William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy were disproportionally represented on those Rhino comps, appearing on all four installments in the series, and scoring four tracks between them on the first one alone. Shatner’s stilted cover songs have become legendary on the basis of just one completely bonkers album, 1968’s The Transformed Man which manages to be a major head-trip both intentionally AND accidentally. Nimoy released about a half-dozen musical albums, a couple of which are Trek themed affairs on which he sometimes sings in-character as Spock, which have moments that approach the outsidery awesomeness of the Shatner LP. The rest are straightforward folk-pop albums, which are unironically not half bad at all.
 

 
Sadly, DeForest Kelley never made a musical LP, so it’s impossible to collect a complete discography of Trek’s archetypal Freudian trio. HOWEVER, there was more music to be found on the bridge: the recordings of Nichelle “Lt. Uhura” Nichols were totally neglected by Rhino when they assembled the Golden Throats comps (probably because she was actually really good). Between 1967 and 1991, she released three full lengths (sort of), two 7” singles, and an EP. Before she blazed a massively important trail for non-servile representation of African-American women on broadcast TV, Nichols sang with both Duke Ellington’s and Lionel Hampton’s bands, and she debuted as a solo recording artist with 1967’s Down to Earth. The title was an obvious nod to her stellar day job, and fittingly, the music was anything but cosmic. It’s a lightly jazzy lounge pop album, typical of its time, and loaded with standards and showtunes.

Keep reading after the jump…

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Posted by Ron Kretsch
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08.25.2016
10:30 am
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There’s going to be a ‘Star Trek’ Vina Barbie Doll
06.09.2016
10:09 am
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In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Star Trek: The Original Series, Mattel will be showcasing an exclusive “Vina” Barbie Doll at the San Diego Comic-Con. The sexy character, made famous by actress Susan Oliver, appeared in the Star Trek pilot episode, “The Cage,” in 1965. Apparently the episode was not broadcast on television until 1988.

The episode is a cult classic and has a different captain, namely Christopher Pike. The story starts with the Enterprise crew receiving a radio distress call from the fourth planet in the Talos star group, where Captain Pike meets a beautiful young woman named Vina. She is a ruse of enemy forces, the Talosians, who seek to lure the Enterprise to their planet. Vina is presented to Pike in various guises and settings, including the seductive green-skinned Orion which is the inspiration for this SDCC doll.

Now if you want one, there’s a catch. Purchasing instructions are, below:

The Barbie Vina doll is priced at $50 and will be featured on Mattel’s SDCC pre-sale site on Matty Collector starting June 16 for subscribers only (Early Access), and from June 16 through June 25 for everyone else (All Access). Orders must be picked up in person at San Diego Comic-Con.


 

 

Posted by Tara McGinley
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06.09.2016
10:09 am
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‘Star Tract’: Demented Christian ‘Star Trek’ parody
04.14.2016
01:14 pm
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“Star Tract” is a low-budget parody of Star Trek (the original series) in which Kirk, Spock, and Scotty roam the universe in search of godless heathens to convert to the Gospel. It’s harmless and thoroughly non-crazy but also mightily amateurish.

The primary mode of “Star Tract” is, thankfully, comedic. The actor playing Kirk reads ... every ... LINE ... in ... the ... classic… patented ... Shatner parodic fashion in which seemingly every syllable is enunciated all on its lonesome. Spock works the word logically into every sentence, and Scotty’s main traits are that he is clumsy and Hispanic.
 

 
Two episodes are available online. The first one focuses on 1 Corinthians 1:27 and uses Scotty’s incessant klutziness as an occasion to reflect on the counterintuitive methods of the Godhead; in the second episode, “Captain Kirk and crew man #37 head to planet Moy Moy and learn about having the mind of Christ” and the key texts are 1 Corinthians 2:12 and 2:16. In case you were wondering, the denizens of Moy Moy talk like Keanu Reeves in Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.

Keep reading after the jump…

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Posted by Martin Schneider
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04.14.2016
01:14 pm
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Watch this meticulously edited ‘Star Trek’ fan video for William Shatner’s awesome Pulp cover
07.22.2015
01:08 pm
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In 2004, Ben Folds produced William Shatner’s album Has Been which included a surprisingly great cover version of Pulp‘s hit song “Common People.” Folds enlisted ‘80s icon Joe Jackson to sing on the choruses of that cover. The Has Been album was surprisingly well received by critics, and many agreed that “Common People” was the “hit” on that record.
 

 
Pulp’s Jarvis Cocker even praised the cover version, stating, “I was very flattered by that because I was a massive Star Trek fan as a kid and so you know, Captain Kirk is singing my song! So that was amazing.”

A fan has created a video for Shatner’s “Common People” using clips from Star Trek: The Original Series.

What makes this edit truly incredible is the attention to detail in matching shots with the lyrical content, even nailing specific lines of the song to lines spoken by Kirk in the show. Check twenty-seven seconds in where “I want to live,” or forty-seven seconds in where “I’ll see what I can do” sync perfectly.  The amount of work that went into this is apparent and astounding.

You can’t say Trekkies aren’t a dedicated lot.

This is totally worth four minutes your time:
 

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
‘Common People’: Identity of slumming Greek socialite in Pulp song revealed at last?

Posted by Christopher Bickel
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07.22.2015
01:08 pm
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Bank of Canada urges ‘Star Trek’ fans to stop ‘Spocking’ their fivers
03.03.2015
07:31 pm
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Bank of Canada is pleading with Star Trek fans to stop “Spocking” its five dollar bills. Since Leonard Nimoy’s death, Canadian folks have been “Spocking” the hell out of the five dollar bill that features a portrait of Canada’s seventh prime minister Sir Wilfrid Laurier.

Sir Wilfrid now sports, on certain bills at least, pointy ears, the signature Vulcan haircut and eyebrows and Spock’s mantra “Live long and prosper.”

According to Bank of Canada it’s not illegal to do this but:

“...However, there are important reasons why it should not be done. Writing on a bank note may interfere with the security features and reduces its lifespan. Markings on a note may also prevent it from being accepted in a transaction. Furthermore, the Bank of Canada feels that writing and markings on bank notes are inappropriate as they are a symbol of our country and a source of national pride.”

I say Spock the hell out of ‘em if it ain’t illegal. Sir Wilfrid Laurier’s face wasn’t that interesting, anyway. In fact, let’s just make this a permanent improvement to the Canadian five dollar bill.

 

 

 
Keep on “Spocking.”

via Toronto Sun

Posted by Tara McGinley
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03.03.2015
07:31 pm
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The marvelous cover art of the early ‘Star Trek’ comic books
12.09.2014
10:19 am
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Poor Gold Key Comics. Despite their stewardship of tons of familiar titles, they always ranked a tier (or three) below the A-list. While Marvel and DC had all the high-octane superhero star power, Gold Key largely got by on licensing properties from other media. They did comic book tie-ins with Hanna-Barbera, Warner Brothers, and Disney cartoons, and brought TV shows like The Man from U.N.C.L.E., The Twilight Zone, H.R. Pufnstuf (!!!), Dark Shadows and Star Trek to the comics racks. Amusingly, some of their tie-in comics outlived by years the original TV series’ upon which they were based, but the company’s fortunes waned throughout the 1970s, and after they lost the lucrative Trek license to Marvel in 1979—just months before that franchise’s cinema revival—their days were numbered. Gold Key was done for by the mid 1980s.

But though they were never the heaviest hitters, Gold Key weren’t wanting for talent. A young Frank Miller’s first pro gig was illustrating a story in The Twilight Zone, and ‘60s-‘80s sitcom deity Garry Marshall wrote scripts for some of their titles. And they had cover painter George Wilson. It’s is beyond frustrating how difficult biographical data on Wilson is to come by. Despite being as prolific as he was accomplished, he has no Wikipedia entry, and searches for his work are complicated by the existence of a pulp novel cover illustrator by the same extremely common name. But his obscurity—and I get that he was basically a jobber, but still—does nothing to diminish his gifts, and it’s just all kindsa wrong that as yet there’s been no big, lavish, coffee-table book collecting his work. He produced incredible numbers of vivid, exciting, superbly designed, impeccably rendered, ridiculously fun cover paintings for Gold Key’s sci-fi, adventure, and horror titles, including many for Star Trek. A lot of the covers that weren’t by Wilson were thrown-together photo illustrations. We suspect you’ll agree that these are far preferable.
 

 

 

 
More after the jump…

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Posted by Ron Kretsch
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12.09.2014
10:19 am
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Music for Spaceports: Wil Wheaton is making ambient cut-up music, and it’s actually pretty good


 
Not unlike Star Trek TOS’ George Takei, The Next Generation‘s Wil Wheaton has forged a thriving Trek afterlife as an internet presence. But while Takei has flourished as Planet Earth’s living avatar of goofy online ephemera, Wheaton has gone from playing the single most hated character in the entire Star Trek franchise to being a worthy ambassador for geek culture.

Wheaton has blogged a lot about gaming, sci-fi, and cosplay, and he’s also made a point of expressing his love for ambient music. And recently, he’s made the laudable transition from appreciator to creator.

I made a thing, which I believe is best experienced as ambient background noise, projected onto a bare brick wall. This is not something that you sit down and watch, the way you’d watch a movie or a TV show.

This work was created by combining audio and visual works obtained from the Internet Archive, at archive.org. The visuals are from Panorama Ephemera, which was found in the Prelinger Archives. The audio was remixed and processed in Audacity, and comes from several different sources, also originally found at the Internet Archive.

Everything used to make this video is in the public domain, or is licensed for remix and reuse.

And I’ll be damned if it ain’t half bad! Sure, there’s better out there, but there’s plenty worse, too. I look forward to hearing more, and if there’s ever a Wil Wheaton ambient LP, I’ll be among the first in line to pick it up.
 

Posted by Ron Kretsch
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11.04.2014
09:18 am
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Great moments in ‘Star Trek’: Captain Kirk and the stalagmite dildo weapon
10.14.2014
02:10 pm
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In a classic scene from the Star Trek episode titled “What are Little Girls Made Of” (season one, episode seven, which aired on October 20th, 1966) we are treated to a skirmish involving Captain Kirk, a stalactite strongly resembling a huge dildo and a giant alien named “Ruk,” played by actor Ted Cassidy (who portrayed “Lurch” on the The Addams Family). Thirty-five minutes into the episode, Kirk is chased by Ruk into the caves of the alien planet he teleported to. To defend himself, Kirk pulls a huge piece of stalactite from the ceiling of the cave and after a quick edit, we get to see Captain Kirk holding what looks inexplicably like a gigantic marital aid. Kirk smacks Ruk around with it and you get to wonder how hard the production crew was laughing when this one slipped by the censors over at NBC.

In case you are short on time, someone has kindly put together a 25-second video summary of the episode that is posted below for your perusal. The full episode is currently streaming on Vimeo
 

Posted by Cherrybomb
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10.14.2014
02:10 pm
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Watch every episode of your cult TV favorites playing at the same time

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Why? How? Who cares! This is just rather awesome!

YouTube user Omni Verse has put together ten minute packages of your favorite cult TV shows in an intense “videoggedon,” where all the episodes are played at the same time!

From Star Trek and The Twilight Zone, to Kolchak—The Night Stalker, Planet of the Apes and Doctor Who. This is like a ten minute sugar rush of cult TV heaven!
 

‘Star Trek’ all 80 episodes played at same time.
 

The Twilight Zone’ all 156 episodes at the same time.
 

‘Kolchak—The Night Stalker’ 20 eps all at once.
 

‘Doctor Who’ all 178 Tom Baker episodes.
 
More cult TV all at once, after the jump…
 

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Posted by Paul Gallagher
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01.07.2014
02:32 pm
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Weird celebrity endorsements: The entire cast of ‘Star Trek’ uses MCI long distance calling
07.15.2013
09:51 am
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I barely remember being conscious of long distance providers. It was before I had to worry about bills and I’ve never had a land line—at this point, I think even my grandparents have seen the light of texting. I do vaguely remember the rabid flurry of phone company commercials, desperately trying to one-up each other and corner the market. As a Trekkie-by-birth however (thanks mom!), I would have totally remembered the weirdness of this 1990 MCI commercial, had I ever witnessed it.

Don’t get me wrong, I cast no stones at product endorsement, not even by my beloved science fiction heroes. I mean, Shatner’s a great spokesmen for Priceline—he has the smarm and the charm to make it work. George Takei appeared in commercials for television, and George Takei can pretty much do whatever he damn well pleases because he is a gift to all mankind. But it is weird to see the entire crew of The Enterprise promoting something as mundane and anachronistic as a long distance service.

Speaking of mundane, I like how they portrayed the MCI offices as a dynamic, mission control kind of atmosphere, instead of the fields of cubicles we know to be the call center.
 

Posted by Amber Frost
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07.15.2013
09:51 am
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