Comics Ate My Brain

December 16, 2009

Forbidden Trek

Filed under: star trek — Tom Bondurant @ 3:04 pm
No, I am not just now realizing that Star Trek owes a tremendous debt to Forbidden Planet. Every time I watch FP I imagine that it is the greatest unfilmed Star Trek episode ever. I mean, really: Leslie Nielsen is pretty much a Roddenberry captain, he works for the “United Planets,” and the four main officers are the commanding officer, first officer, ship’s doctor, and chief engineer. The only thing missing is a Spock figure, and I’m not sure that “Doc” wouldn’t fill that role pretty well.

Probably the weakest aspect of the movie is the romance between Nielsen’s J.J. Adams (that name’s oddly familiar too, given who directed the latest Trek) and Anne Francis’ Altaira, and that’s not all bad. I bought it from her point of view, but by the same token Adams knows full well what she’s feeling and to my mind takes advantage of it.

Still, it’s great fun to spot the other elements which would later find their way into Star Trek. The mysterious loner and his female companion figured in “The Man Trap,” “What Are Little Girls Made Of?,” and “Requiem for Methuselah,” the all-knowing computer was a staple of Original Trek, and of course there’s the design of the deceleration devices.

Oh, and Dr. Morbius reminded me a heckuva lot of Dr. Orpheus from “The Venture Brothers.” Now I want to see Dr. Orpheus’ daughter in the Anne Francis role….

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1 Comment »

  1. I love that movie. On a side note: around the same time Marvel was publishing the 2001 and Logan's Run comics, the company briefly announced a Forbidden Planet series that would have started with adapting the movie and moved on to new stories. The blurb may have appeared in an issue of FOOM, but don't hold me to that. I assume the project was ultimately dropped because Marvel got the rights to Star Trek instead…

    Comment by RAB — December 17, 2009 @ 6:16 am


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