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Nolan's Pop Culture Review 2009!
   Assistant Editor / Co-Moderator:  Terence Nuzum.                 HOME           ARCHIVES
Established A.D. 2000, March 19. Now in our tenth calendar year!
Number 477  (Vol. 10, No. 20). This edition is for the week of May 11--17, 2009.

"Angels and Demons"
Forgotten Horrors: Blood Massacre
Summer Blockbusters of 1989
Angels And Demons And Freemasons, Oh My! .... The Chrysler Conspiracy? .... Enemy Of The State .... Revisiting The Air Force One Fly Over .... Defining The Enemy .... Greed Returns .... .... n
This Wont End Well, Brett .... Nfl Wants 2 Games In London .... Tampa Gets A New Team .... Josh Freeman Will Sit This Year .... Excuse Me While I Choke, Again .... Nfl Live’s Hall-of-fame Coaches .... Clemens Speaks .... Phelps Is A Stud! h
Reunited And It Sounds So Good! .... Creepy And Kooky .... Still Unsinkable .... #18??? .... Passing On .... .... .... .... My Favorite Films, Part 2... e

More Trekin'
Shocker Toys (Update)
Readers' Comments

I didn't intend to start this week's PCR with more commentary about the new Star Trek film, but it is still such a hot topic around the Crazed Fanboy compound, I felt I wanted to convey a few last thoughts.

The whole nature of the film has caused fans to either embrace the new continuity (which is most who have actually seen the movie) or to inspire an outright boycott of it because it dares to re-write a beloved and cherished mythology that goes back decades.

Like I said in last week's PCR, I didn't expect to take the new Star Trek seriously, even if I enjoyed the film as an action picture, due to the fact that as an original Trekkie/Trekker, knowledge of the original series' trivia became somewhat of a specialty, as it had with nearly all fans my age. To accept this late in the game the abolition of all that went before pretty much smacked of heresy, and outright Trek traitorism.

I totally understand that attitude, but I felt the new film handled the "alternate timeline" angle well, especially with the inclusion of the original Spock (Leonard Nimoy) to help guide us through it (again, see PCR #476).

One of the key rejections of this approach with certain fans seems to have to do with the idea that any new film should be designed to inspire re-discovery of the old series and its sequels, not abolish them as inconsequential. And I agree plenty could've been done with the pre-existing continuity and been just as cool. It's as if the producers assume new TV/movie fans are so lazy that they'll not pay attention to anything that started way before they were born, and must be re-written for their generation so they'll feel special or something. This is the bad reaction I had to The Death of Superman comic series of the early '90s (among other things). I got the distinct impression the publishers at DC decided baby-boomers were no longer a relevant demographic. I felt betrayed and only rarely ever bought another Superman comic again. I went into Star Trek with great nervousness that I'd come out with the same disgusted attitude. But it didn't turn out that way.

To be totally fair to the opposition, I sympathize with the fear that re-runs of the original Trek series might dry up as younger viewers, weaned on a new series of films, cannot recognize or identify with the older continuity. However, that never really happened with any of the Superman series or the mid-60's Batman which are still enjoyable products of their time.

Lastly, as a reality check (or Trek Check, snark snark), before anyone gets too hepped up about Trek "continuity" being disturbed, consider these as I channel my inner geek over The Original Series:

  • The idea of going back to Starfleet Academy days where the cast "all meet for the first time" is at least 30 years old. It was one of the ideas bandied about for the proposed late '70s TV series Star Trek: Phase II, before that was abandoned in favor of the adult cast before that was abandoned in favor of Star Trek: The Motion Picture.

  • The characters never met at Starfleet Academy! According to The Menagerie (itself a hodge-podge of new/old pilots), Spock was already onboard the Enterprise working under Captain Christopher Pike (played by the late Jeffrey Hunter, in the new film by Bruce Greenwood of Nowhere Man fame). He would not meet Kirk until later. When the dust settled on casting, Engineer Scotty and Dr. McCoy were at least ten years older than Kirk. (In the movie, this difference is preserved.)

  • In Where No Man Has Gone Before, the first senior medical officer of the Enterprise was not Leonard "Bones" McCoy, but a Doctor Piper (played by Paul Fix, "Micah" of The Rifleman fame). McCoy appeared in the next episode that featured the character.

  • Pavel Chekov would not appear at all until Season Two (to allegedly attract a younger audience due to his resemblance to The Monkees' Davy Jones). In fact one of the most oft-quoted continuity errors occurs during Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan, where Khan (played by the superlative Ricardo Montalban) recognizes Chekov and says "I never forget a face." But Walter Koenig's character Chekov never met Khan before that.

  • Janice Rand disappeared after Season One and would not be seen again until Star Trek: the Motion Picture.

  • The Klingons were not portrayed as having huge craniums until the movies. There was plenty of howling from the fans about that, but it eventually settled and no one thinks about that much anymore. (There's an interesting aside from ST:TNG's Worf character who mentions about the anatomical differences, but that Klingons "don't speak of it" with humans.)

  • Speaking of Star Trek: The Motion Picture, ever wonder what happened to Dekker and Ilia after they communed with V'Ger to become a Starchild or something? And what of all the information gleaned from V'Ger? Those were pretty big deals that have been summarily ignored unto this day. (Along with the "pajama" Star Fleet uniforms, fortunately. Those were re-designed for The Wrath of Khan and stuck around permanently.)

    I'm sure there are tons more examples, but these are just a few off the top of my head where continuity has been jostled a few times before and Trek survived. And I'm not even including the animated series or the books. I respect Star Trek fans' sense of loyalty, but please remember: in the movie world anything is possible. There is nothing to prevent the next movie from reversing everything and putting it back where it was if it'll please fans, and even more importantly, make a buck for the producers.

    Due to some computer problems I suffered at the start of the week, I lost a day's output and have run way behind. The Shocker Toy review I had planned for this week's issue is being postponed until the weekend when I will have a better opportunity for a decently-presented piece. I apologize for any inconvenience this causes.

    Readers' Comments

    The Readers' Comments section for this issue of PCR is now closed. To continue to interact, please use the Message Board or write a Letter to the Editor! The comments below are listed starting with the most recent. Thank you.

    Crazed FanComments -- We Welcome Reader Feedback on any article(s) on this page.
    Nolan [19-05-2009 07:00] 
    Happy 30th Birthday to Terence! Many Happy Returns, my boy.
    Chris Woods [19-05-2009 06:53] 
    Happy Birthday Terence!
    ED [19-05-2009 05:38] 
    Happy birthday Terence, welcome to the dark side! You are one of us now. :)
    Nolan [18-05-2009 17:22] 
    Sorry I dropped out of sight for a few days, but my fragile health took another downturn over the weekend, which I spent most of in bed. I'm feeling much better now, though.

    Thanks for the inquiry and support, everyone. As always, thanks to Terence for keeping an eye on things in my absence.
    Petrey [18-05-2009 15:38] 
    Yeah, Nolan is still with us, unless that's his ghost responding on the message board from today. Come to think of it, his Avatar is pale looking.
    Shelby [18-05-2009 15:04]  
    Haven't been to the site in a while. Is Nolan still alive? His health was pretty bad I heard. Any insight?
    Petrey [17-05-2009 12:59] 
    ATTENTION ALL FILM REVIEWERS ON THIS SITE!! Any film you see on my website, www.cultrararevideos.com OR www.kentuckybootleg.com just email me and I will send you a free copy to review, given there is anything that grabs you.
    Petrey [17-05-2009 12:55] 
    Chris, I have the Hoyt's Policy trailer on videotape. As many others, Regal, AMC, Cineplex Odeon, GCC, National Amusements and others that played in front of those huge flicks you laid out in the retro art. We were only 3 screens at that time but the big theatre held 850 asses give or take. Just to let everyone know when I took over managing the Britton in 1991, we had BATMAN RETURNS show up in 1992. I put BATMAN RETURNS Thursday night at 9 and 12 large as life up on the marquee. Hundreds of people swarmed us! I had employees dressed up as the Joker (even though he wasn't in the film) and had them dressed as Batman upon the roof with a spotlight with permission somehow through Muvico because I was concerned about the base. Many kept yelling "JUMP" to the guy on the roof, ha! We also had LETHAL 3. I bought some used copies of the previous films and sold them at our concession stand. Yep, enjoyed your retro, that goes without saying, look at all the memories u pulled out of me.
    Paul Guzzo [17-05-2009 12:31] 
    Just saw Star Trek ... and it gets the "100% F'N AWESOME" Paul Guzzo seal of approval. What a great film and I personally am glad they chose to rewrite history with the alternate reality angle for two reasons:

    1. They can keep making movies for years to come and not have to worry about keeping everything so accurate,


    Chris Woods [17-05-2009 10:50] 
    Brandon - Glad you liked the article. UHF was awesome and is probably one of the funniest films I ever seen. I still remember the trailer spoofing Indiana Jones in the beginning.
    Chris Woods [17-05-2009 10:48] 
    Petrey - I liked your retrospective on the Britton in '89. That summer was very big for movies and every summer after that got bigger. That sucked you couldn't play any Paramount pictures. Back in my small town of Utica, NY when only got studio movies and no indy flix. We had two malls that had Hoyts cinemas and each mall would play different movies. So, there was only one place to go to see the film. Not lasted until the early 90's. There were also small one screen dollar theaters that would play the movies after they left the mall.
    ED [17-05-2009 07:56] 
    Mike - won't this be a re-remake of Pirahna? Showtime did a completely unessicary remake of it about 10-15 years ago with William Katt. They bought the rights to a lot of Roger Corman properties and did a bunch of lame remakes.
    lola chaos zenlicker [17-05-2009 06:44] 
    ghostbuster 2 sucked. not as good as original. oye!
    Brandon [16-05-2009 12:29] 
    To Chris Woods

    I'd like to add that UHF was a ton of fun when it came out. I put it on my Top Cult films list in PCR166 because it was a bomb at the box office, but Al has quite the following.

    The summer of '89 was all about Batman, Last Crusade and a chick film that guys could stomach -When Harry Met Sally

    Great retrospective
    Brandon [16-05-2009 12:25] 
    To Munger:

    Re: Coaches to Hire

    Depends on my team. Gruden and Dungy are mirror opposites of a "foot in the rear" for a boost on offense or defense. Just an overall pick, a great coach who last 10 years, done it all - I'd take Cowher. Cowher year in and year out lost players and still won.
    Michael [15-05-2009 23:09] 
    Hello all. Due to a 2 1/2 hour rain delay at the Royals/Orioles game and the fact that I have to be up for work in 5 hours, the Rant will be delayed until late Saturday. Sorry for the delay.
    Petrey [15-05-2009 23:06] 
    Almost forgot GHOSTBUSTERS 2 and why it's important to mention. It and GOODFELLAS were the only 2 films to return for 2 more engagements!
    Petrey [15-05-2009 18:13] 
    DO THE RIGHT THING was played at our Eastlake location and we had it for 1 week later into summer. Hardly any people for that one maybe because it played for a while & most of the people had already seen it. POET'S SOCIETY got little patronage also due to the fact that we didn't get the film on the break. BERNIE'S did fantastic business. Hell even the sneak had 400 people! WHEN HARRY MET SALLY's teaser trailer played, it was the orgasm scene in the restaurant. Laughter about knocked the walls down with that simple little preview. THE ABYSS did ok business. I just remembered what movie GCC got into a fight with on wanting the concession gross percentage as well as the bulk of the ticket price: STAR TREK 3! So that's my dull remembrance but never the less that's how the films you laid out played or didn't play at the Britton. Oh, one more thing. Our union projectionist thought the BATMAN poster was a mouth with gold teeth. He couldn't see the bat symbol! ha! Ed Rose, remember him
    Petrey [15-05-2009 18:02] 
    Well Chris, now that my roids have settled down and my spine is in place, I will give you a Britton Theatre Retrospective on the summer movies you listed very accurately in your column. We played all the films you listed except for INDIANA JONES due to the fact that General Cinema Corp. had a fight with Paramount about 6 yrs. earlier when the studio wanted part of the gross from concession sells as well. So, no Paramount pic until the following yr. 90' they slowly started coming back to the bigger GCCs. The company (Paramount) wouldn't schedule films for the Britton since we had only 3 houses. ELM ST. was the only print that arrived in my hands, got carried up to the booth and was cancelled at the last minute. UHF wasn't played as well. BARRED was played and all the wrestling fans came out pissed at what they had just watched. The number one film as far as patrons go for us? ROADHOUSE! Swayze packed them in and took control of the numbers. JASON being Paramount wasn't played either
    Chris Woods [15-05-2009 14:57] 
    ED - Cool, yeah I would like of copy of the movie and the video one as well. Thanks for the offer, I'll e-mail you about it.
    ED [14-05-2009 17:42] 
    Chris - I thought you might like that one. If you don't want to pick up Serial Psychos I can burn you a copy of the film version. I also have the existing footage from the video version that George supplied me with if you would like a copy. It's interesting to compare the two.
    Kirk [14-05-2009 16:27] 
    Chris Woods [14-05-2009 16:20] 
    ED - Great article on Don Dohler's Blood Massacre. I never got to see that one since it was hard to find. Glad to hear it's finally on DVD. I only saw a few scenes of it in his documnetary. in the doc, he talked a lot about the production of both films and the problems in post production.
    Chris Woods [14-05-2009 15:22] 
    Paul - Thanks, I'm glad you liked the article. The summer of '89 was a great year for movies.

    Nolan - Great write up on the continuity or miscontinuity of Star Trek. A good read and some cool facts on the series.
    Michael [14-05-2009 15:12] 
    It is my understanding that Chekov ran into Khan while using the Men's Room on the Enterprise. I heard this from Sulu, who was just minding his own business and tapping his foot in the stall on the other side of the room.
    ED [14-05-2009 06:20] 
    Has anyone seen the new Star Trek commercial for Mentos? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qWNkBD0BIA4
    Beaz [13-05-2009 20:52] 
    It was Air Force One that did the fly over, not a random airliner. Besides, it's getting so NY'ers have no sense of humor anymore. They're a tad skittish...

    Star Trek rocked! A few inacuracies doesn't make it a poor film.
    The casting alone was nothing less than awesome!
    Paul Guzzo [13-05-2009 19:54] 
    In fact, the column was soo good it deserves TWO comments from me! Loved it man.
    Paul Guzzo [13-05-2009 19:52] 
    Awesome column Chris ... I have always said my first memories of getting excited for multiple blockbuster summer films was in the summer was 1989. Loved the walk down memory lane.
    Joel D. Wynkoop [13-05-2009 18:47]  
    Nolan, well said. These are all the thing's I wanted to say. Wrath of Khan about Khan never meeting Chekov were led or must believe Khan met him while not on camera in Space Seed. Pike was on the planet in the Menagerie. I remember way back when Roddenberry said he wanted to do a NEW STAR TREK with young actors, that was back in 72 I think. The whole Klingon thing from Tribbles and Tribulations, Klingons were never on Earth like in Enterprise, Yep Dr. Piper, not pepper was first hah, Anyway Nolan, I loved how you wrote all that. Good read. Also let's remember, it's just a TV show.

    Spock [13-05-2009 17:36] 
    In the latest star trek series, enterprise, the mystery of the klingon's head ridges missing in tos is explained. I didn't buy it, but neither did other fans. it can be said that enterprise was not cannot, either.
    I saw the new film. I accept it, although there are about 1,000 canon things igored that could not be explained by the time travel story alone. parrallel universe, anyone?
    despite this, it was a good alternative reality movie.
    Petrey [13-05-2009 14:10] 
    [31-12-1969 16:00] 
    End of Comments    

  • "Mike's Rant" is ©2009 by Michael A. Smith    "Matt's Rail" is ©2009 by Matthew Drinnenberg     "This Week's Movie Review" is ©2009 by Michael A. Smith    "Retrorama" is ©2009 by ED Tucker    "State of the Nation" is ©2009 by Brandon Jones    "Growing Up Fanboy" is ©2009 by Chris Woods    "FANGRRL" is ©2009 by Lisa Scherer Ciurro    "Sports Talk" is ©2009 by Chris Munger      All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2009 by Nolan B. Canova

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