“The Doomsday Machine” is one of my favorites. Kirk and Spock – despite that fact that they’re on different ships for most of the episode – are so perfectly in sync with each other. Gotta love it! And, not to be shallow or anything, both of them are absolutely gorgeous here.
I generally don’t care all that much about special effects. I want good stories, good characterizations. If a movie is effects-heavy and plot-light, I’ll be snoring in the theatre seat.
At the same time, I’d love for a newer generation to discover classic Trek, and the conventional wisdom is, classic Trek’s dated effects put people off. So it’s very cool that they are redoing the Trek effects, and they did a beautiful job with this episode.
The way the Enterprise looks and moves, the look of the severely damaged Constellation, the way the ships roll and tumble in the grip of the tractor beam with all those asteroids drifting around or impacting against the doomsday machine, the launch of the shuttlecraft – so realistic, and yet integrated so seamlessly with the rest of the show. The doomsday machine itself looks ferocious and dangerous – the same basic shape as before, but quite a bit different from the Thanksgiving table décor it used to resemble.
This being broadcast television, of course they made cuts! Two of my favorite scenes are when Decker takes command from Spock, and later on when Spock takes command back from Decker. They cut some dialogue from these scenes, and little bits of business, and of course I found that jarring.
Well, all that will be back in when they release the DVD versions. And here I thought I’d acquired my very last set of Star Trek episodes….
Now about those rubber monsters…
Here's a photo gallery of "before and after" pictures.