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Mission Log podcast begins coverage of the animated Star Trek series

March 22, 2014

Yup, totally kid’s fare.

There is a chunk of the Star Trek franchise that I like to call the forgotten Trek department.  At the top of this list is the 1973 Star Trek animated series.  (The second would be the short lived Star Trek phase II series that never happened but that will have to wait for a future post.)   For the record, I want to state that I have always been a supporter of the animated Star Trek series which usually meant I was flying solo during discussions where I was defending it.  Early on, like in the 80s, this was probably a generational thing as, in America at least, cartoons had always been perceived as a strictly children’s media.  As someone who grew up watching the original 1964 Jonny Quest series, I never really fell into this trap.  Now, I’ll grant that the lion’s share of animated material back in that time period was specifically targeted at kids but, watching Race Bannon going on a 10 minute kill fest to rescue Doctor Quest in the episode Terror Island should pretty much shock anyone out of the stereotype that cartoons are only for children.  That particular episode ultimately got yanked from the standard Saturday morning syndication package due to its violent content.  I would normally say this was too bad but, to be completely honest, when I finally saw it again awhile back, it really is kind of a weak episode, even with the return of the character Jade.  So, I guess this is rather long winded way of saying that I appreciated fairly early on that animation could be adult fare as well.

Getting back on the topic of Star Trek, as opposed to my wildly misspent childhood, I feel this overall prejudice towards animation kind of “tarred and feathered” the animated Star Trek franchise.  As a result, I was kind of nervous to see the reaction of Ken and John at Mission Log, as well as the rest of the listeners, to this series.  I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised that they have so far found a good deal of merit to the series.  Oh screw this!  I feel totally freaking vindicated for my support of the animated series based on their reaction so far.  So, all of those people who thought I was nuts for defending the animated Star Trek series back in the day can go to hell.  Not that I’m bitter or anything.   As I’ve said before Mission Log is an awesome podcast for any Star Trek fan and if you want to hear Ken and John’s excellent discussion of the animated series you can check out it out here.  You can also check out my earlier review of the animated series that I did for The Movie Waffler’s TV site here.

On a final note, the animation of this series has not aged all that gracefully.  I have no idea how expensive it is to do animation these days other than to guess that it has to be a lot less expensive than back in the 1970s.  So, I would propose that, much like the visual effects work was redone for the original series, it would be a good idea to look into redoing the animation for the animated Star Trek.  You could literally redo everything around the original soundtracks.  Maybe someone could start a Kickstarter for this or something.

One Comment
  1. I’m a HUGE fan of the Animated Series, and have long felt that it doesn’t get the attention and respect it’s deserved over the years. That seems to be changing now, fortunately.

    I’m a little behind on the Mission Log podcast, but now I can’t wait to get caught up!

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