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TREKTODAY.COM - View Archives: August 1999

News headlines from August 1999:


Saturday August 28, 1999
Radio Trek Is Redesigned
Christian (5:49 pm CST)
I just noticed at the German Star Trek Index that a new edition of 'TrekMinds,' the online German radio show, has been released. Together with this 11th edition, the entire Radio Trek site has also been redesigned, as you can see here. If you just want to listen to the actual show (which includes a review of 'Birth of the Federation, the usual web site and video reviews, and an editorial), you can find it here.

Beltran To Host Ball
Christian (5:44 pm CST)
Danielle Armbrust at the official Continuum is reporting about the Galaxy Ball, a gala benefit for the Down Syndrome Association of Los Angeles, which will be hosted by Robert Beltran on Saturday the 30th of October. According to the article, Beltran won't be the only Voyager star to make an appearance:

The ball promises a night of dinner, dancing and entertainment by some of Voyager's cast members. There are scheduled musical performances by Beltran, Robert Duncan McNeill ("Tom Paris") and Tim Russ ("Tuvok"), and a comedy routine by Ethan Phillips ("Neelix"). Beltran's brother, Louie Cruz Beltran, will be providing live music with his band, The West Coast Players. A benefit mini-convention, including Q&A and autograph sessions with stars of ST: VOY, as well as a silent auction, will be held earlier that day. It will also be hosted by Beltran.

Info on how to get tickets for the event can be found here.

Mary P. Taylor Interview
Christian (5:41 pm CST)
I can't believe I missed this when it was originally posted, but Michelle Erica Green at AnotherUniverse's Mania Magazine has put up an interview with Mary Taylor, editor of the new 'clip show book' 'Adventures in Time and Space.' The interview starts with an introduction to both Taylor and her book:

To commemorate 20 years of Star Trek novels, Pocket Books decided to commission a collection of excerpts and essays on the printed fiction's contributions to the franchise. Yet when selecting an editor for this tribute volume, senior editor John Ordover chose a well-known fan rather than one of his famous writers. The result, Star Trek: Adventures in Time and Space by Chicago attorney Mary P. Taylor, presents a Trekker's view of the best Star Trek literary voyages.

Like any anthology, it highlights the editor's preferences - in this case, an admitted bias in favor of books based on the original series. Yet because it was put together by a fan, the book reflects a passion for characters and themes popular with many viewers, as opposed to more esoteric elements that have achieved critical attention. You won't find chapters on 24th-century feminism or on homoerotic subtext in Kirk/Spock stories, but you will find almost 600 pages of excerpts and annotation, plus a timeline placing all the novels within the Star Trek chronology.

More can be found here. Thanks go out to TrekWeb for the link.

Spock Vs. Q
Christian (5:40 pm CST)
The Star Trek Continuum is reporting about a new audio work by Alien Voices, the production company of Leonard Nimoy (Spock) and John DeLancie (Q). Apparently, in November they'll be publishing the audiotape 'Spock Vs. Q,' which is a dialogue they've been performing at several conventions all over the world. For more info on this audio work (which will be published by Simon & Shuster), please read the full article.

New 'Voyager: Elite Force' Preview
Christian (5:36 pm CST)
A new preview of Raven's upcoming 'Voyager: Elite Force' action game has appeared over at Speedy 3D, who seem to think that the game's creators will certainly be able to create a fantastic product:

Raven, as many of you will know, play their hearts very close to ID Software and as such usually manage to gain exclusive access to their latest technology. In this case rather than do yet another medieval blaster, they have opted to take the Quake3 engine and use it for a Trek game. As such, 'Elite Force' is set to become the very first Trek based FPS style game, a landmark, which quickly causes us to swim in our own drool. Raven haven't simply opted for any old blaster, they have taken the Half-Life concept to a whole new level. Adding one of the most advanced AI systems so far, combining that with Re-Done special effects and then modelling the entire ship to exact detail. Always being the ones to best exploit the capabilities of a new engine, Raven are bound to take the curved surface concept to the next level as well.

You can find the full preview by following this link - thanks go out to Federation HQ for finding it for me.

Rick Berman For A Day
Christian (5:36 pm CST)
Matt Springer at Cinescape has put up a rather interesting new editorial, in which he tells us what he would do if he could sit in Rick Berman's chair for one day. Some of the things he'd do would be fire all old writers and get some major sci-fi writers to write for the series, while he also talks about what he would do with the next Trek series. One of the series ideas he actually thinks have merit is the Starfleet Academy series:

Starfleet Academy: Not a weak Trek meets Top Gun retread, but instead a clever fusion of Buffy the Vampire Slayer's smart take on teen life, DS9's ongoing plotlines and TNG's adventure. A crew of Academy recruits begin their training at the prestigious school under the guidance of a few recurring, stern taskmasters. Rope in Colm Meaney as a regular character, rotate in guest spots for visiting professors and lecturers, and send the recruits out on plenty of hands-on experience missions out in the nether regions of space. If you can fuse some cleverly done teen drama with a young, swashbuckling take on the classic Trek motif, you've got solid latnium on your hands.

As I've said before, I certainly agree with Springer on this - 'Flight Academy' could certainly be done right. Anyway, lots more interesting thoughts on Trek's future (including a truly brilliant idea for a series starring Worf and Alexander), can be found in the full article.

Star Trek Bottled Water Article
Christian (5:35 pm CST)
A new article by E! Online's Joal Ryan looks at the recently announced 'Altair water' (Star Trek bottled water), and the company behind it, the Starbase-1 Coffee Co:

"Ninety-five percent of the people who run this company are Trekkies," says Maryann Metz, Starbase-1 vice president. (And, yes, she's one, too.) The business was launched in 1997--no doubt borne of the observation that Trekkies do not live by reruns alone. Occasionally, even the most devoted follower needs a good stiff cup of, you know, Vulcan Decaffeinated.

In the full article, we hear a bit more about the other products the company sells (including the apparently rather popular Raktajino espresso blend) and precisely what Altair water consists of.

Hello World!
Christian (5:35 pm CST)
Sorry for both the late-ness and the short-ness of today's update - thanks to me not being able to get online until rather late today, and thanks to this huge debate I've found myself drawn into, today's update is minimal to say the least.

Friday August 27, 1999
Kenneth Biller On WB Series
Christian (2:10 pm CST)
According to the Hollywood Reporter, the WB just signed a deal with Harry Elfont and Deborah Kaplan to develop a new drama series set at a performing arts college, which is currently targeted for the 2000-2001 TV season. One of the writers for the series will apparently be Kenneth Biller, the Voyager staff member who was recently rumoured to be awaiting a promotion to Executive Producer next year when Brannon Braga moves over to Series V. At the moment it is not yet known whether this will interfere with Biller's duties on Voyager. You can find the full Hollywood Reporter article by visiting this page at TrekWeb, where it is reposted.

Fort Wayne Con Report Update
Christian (2:10 pm CST)
Following yesterday's Delta Quadrant Times convention report about the Slanted Fedora con in Fort Wayne, Bradley Hastings (who also attended the con) sent me the following extra info about the con, including news of a new episode:

I do want to add something that wasn't in the report you have. Tim Russ said that there is one episode that is Chakotay heavy and deals with a 21st century space ship. Also one more thing that I would like to add that Tim Russ was not complaining about Ethan's pranks it is all in good fun. Heck, Russ said himself that if he didn't have fun on the set he would go nuts since he has to play a non-emotional character for 16 hours or more a day.

Major thanks go out to Bradley for sending this in!

GamePen Reviews 'Starfleet Command'
Christian (2:10 pm CST)
C.A. Dahl at GamePen has written a new review of 'Starfleet Command,' Interplay's new real-time strategy which can do no wrong. Awarding it no less than 4.5 stars, the reviewer believes that this is actually the game to break the Star Trek game curse:

We're still waiting for the superhero game, but the Star Trek curse has finally been lifted with the release of Starfleet Command. This may be, initially, a little difficult to understand. SFC appears to be a very slow-paced RTS game involving dueling spaceships, many of which are unfamiliar to Star Trek fans. None of the beloved characters -- beyond Sulu, in a minor speaking role -- make an appearance. Even the races are a question mark -- who are the Lyrians? Where's the Borg? Why is Qo'nos, the Klingon homeworld, named Klinzhai? To top it all off, there's a baroque interface and a learning curve to make flight-simulation fanatics quail. So far, it's obvious that there's nothing that screams "SUCCESS!" here.

What SFC has is pedigree. It is heavily based on Star Fleet Battles (or SFB), a boardgame that is in turn based on concepts from Star Trek's original episodes, the animated series of the early 70's, and the first two Star Trek movies. SFB itself has been around for about twenty years now, and is acknowledged to be one of the most popular, as well as complex, wargames ever. Dozens of rulebooks, supplements, and scenarios have fleshed-out a universe that diverges significantly from the "official" Star Trek as we know of it today. The "Star Fleet Universe" consists of several major races, and many more minor ones, engaged in a General War for galactic supremacy. Combat in SFB consists of individual starship actions, with each starship having detailed maneuverability, offensive, and defensive systems.

In the rest of the review, Dahl talks about the game's complexity, its Dynaverse story engine, and the slightly disappointing interface. Find it all here.

UPN's 'WWF Smackdown' Beats CBS
Christian (2:09 pm CST)
United Paramount Network executives must be having a little party by now - yesterday's debut of the 'WWF Smackdown!' show scored no less than a 5.4 rating / 10 share at 8:00pm, followed by an even better 5.9/10 an hour later. This actually allowed UPN to beat both CBS and the WB, which certainly isn't something they've been able to accomplish often before. The full ratings report can be found here.

Kahn Vs. Kirk Recreated
Christian (2:09 pm CST)
For the past three days now, gaming news reporter Evil Avatar has been reporting about his experiences playing the new 'Starfleet Command' game, in his daily 'Pure Evil' editorial (sort of like my 'Hello World!') Today, he provides us with a description of his multiplayer Starfleet Command game with his reviewer Steve Erhardt, in which they recreated the Kirk vs. Kahn battle from 'Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan:'

Fate smiled upon us and tonight Steve and I were able to do our Starfleet Command Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn "Kirk vs Kahn Nebula Battle". The rules were simple, We picked the ship hulls that matched the Enterprise and the Reliant but to keep the battle fun, I picked a Light Cruiser and Steve picked a Heavy Cruiser that matched my Light Cruiser for BVP points. The Starships we picked are evenly matched right from the beginning, even though they look different and are armed with different weapons. We are fighting in a Nebula, and I chose a large Nebula that was empty of those Nasty Black Holes that plagued me the night before last. Remember, much like the Movie, inside the Nebula our Shields are nearly useless (they will only charge once to minimum status and not re-charge ever), Missiles will only fire a short distance, and Photon Torpedos will not "lock-on" to an enemy so they will have to be fired at point blank range. If you couldn't tell, it was Me that made the rules... Snicker.

The full report can be found in today's Pure Evil, while about a dozen screenshots from the battle are also available.

Star Trek Convention Fever Article
Christian (2:09 pm CST)
Danielle Armbrust, regular contibutor to the Star Trek Continuum, has written a new article about the series of 'fab four' conventions Slanted Fedora is organising, featuring appearances by James Doohan (Scotty), Nichelle Nichols (Uhura), George Takei (Chekov) and George Takei (Sulu). The article contains some info on how you can get tickets for the next few conventions, while it also contains a schedule for Slanted Fedora's conventions in September. You can find it all here.

Today On TV
Christian (2:08 pm CST)
-According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Battle Lines' at 16:00 BST tomorrow, followed an hour later by Voyager's 'Lifesigns.'

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Der Ausgesetzte' tomorrow morning at 02:55 CET. At 15:00 tomorrow, they'll be showing Voyager's 'Das wirkliche Leben,' followed an hour later by 'Herkunft aus der Ferne.'

Trek BBS Today
Christian (2:08 pm CST)
As we move into the weekend, there are still lots of interesting discussions going on at the Trek BBS:

-If you could improve anything in The Phantom Menace, what would it be?

-Do you think Rick Berman and the rest of Paramount will ever bring back Kirk, and would that be a good thing? (Warning: includes a few very long ramblings by yours truly)

-Why is the TNG forum so empty?

Find more interesting topics at the Trek BBS, where registration has unfortunately been suspended for the next few days due to a possible spamming threat. Please email me personally if this causes any problems for you.

Hello World!
Christian (2:08 pm CST)
My internet connection problems are about to be resolved, and tomorrow I'll definitely be able to update again from my own computer. That's also when new articles will finally be going up at the Nation - my apologies for the rather long stretch without any articles.

Thursday August 26, 1999
First Wildstorm Trek Comic Info
Christian (3:33 pm CST)
The Detroit News Comic Book Continuum has posted the catalog solicitation information for Nathan Archer's 'False Colors,' the first Star Trek comic book being published by Wildstorm comics. Take a look at what this first comic, set aboard the U.S.S. Voyager, will be dealing with:

Star Trek: Voyager - False Colors tells of an encounter between the Starship Voyager and a mysterious craft. It looks like a Borg, sounds like a Borg and acts like a Borg, so it must be a Borg, right? The answer to that question is just one of the surprises in store in this special issue. False Colors is offered with a 50-50 split between two covers -- one a photo cover of actress Jeri Ryan as Seven of Nine, the other an illustration by Jim Lee and Scott Williams.

The comic will have a size of 48 pages, and will cost you $5.95 when it comes out on the 24th of November. A small sample image from the comic can be found by visiting the Comic Book Continuum's Upcoming Comics page and scrolling down to the 'False Colors' listing. Thanks go out to Jim Zimmerman for pointing me to this.

As always, if you also have questions about the Star Trek comics, you can submit them directly the comics editor Jeff Mariotte, at his Q&A Board over at the Trek Nation. If you visit it, you might be wondering why there hasn't been an update in such a long time - the reason is that unfortunately most submitted comics Q&A questions were also lost in my disk crash a few days ago.

Open Letter From William Shatner
Christian (2:51 pm CST)
Sorry for not mentioning this before, but apparently William Shatner (James T. Kirk) posted an open letter to his official web site on the 16th of August, in which he thanks all his fans for the "outpouring of support" after the death of his wife, Nerine Shatner. In it, he also mentions a memorial fund for his wife he just set up:

Please consider making a donation to the memorial fund I've established to help those with an addiction to drugs or alcohol. Friendly House is a non-profit, private facility for women in need of help in overcoming these problems, and was the first residential recovery home for women in the U.S. No one has ever been turned away in its 49 years of existence because of an inability to pay; the average stay for each resident is between three to six months, and can last up to a year. Friendly House is not officially affiliated with Alcoholics Anonymous, but espouses the twelve-step program, in addition to providing love, trust and support. I hope you'll help me carry on Nerine's memory in a manner she would approve.

[...]

The Nerine Shatner Memorial Fund
c/o MCTS
760 North La Cienega Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90069
Attn: Victor Meschures

Shatner's full letter can be found by going here. I first saw this on the Sci-Fi Wire.

Spiner 'Dorothy Dandridge' Pics
Christian (2:51 pm CST)
BrentFemme's Brent Spiner Info Page has posted a really huge amount of screencaps from the new HBO made-for-tv movie 'Introducing Dorothy Dandridge,' starring Brent Spiner (Data) and Halle Berry. The site's three dozen images, all showing Brent Spiner, can be found by going here. Thanks go out to Welcome, Brent Spiner Fans! for the link.

Unsung Heroes: Lon Suder
Christian (2:50 pm CST)
After returning from a holiday, Julia Houston at About.com's Star Trek Fans has put up a new article in her series dealing with Trek's 'Unsung Heroes.' This installment deals with Lon Suder, the psychopathic killer first introduced in the episode 'Meld:'

People like to talk about how DS9 is nitty-gritty Trek, while Voyager is lighter entertainment, but just about the grittiest thing I've ever seen on Star Trek was the introduction of the short-lived, deeply missed character, Lon Suder. Suder is that most rare of creatures on Star Trek: a truly creepy individual you totally believe will kill you and not care.

In the full article, Julia goes on to analyse the character of Suder, who was unfortunately killed off far too soon for most fans' tastes.

German Spock Double Creates Series
Christian (2:50 pm CST)
The German Star Trek Index is reporting that Willi Wiegand, a German 'Mr. Spock' double, will soon be producing a television show about Star Trek for a local television station in Frankfurt, Germany. In the show, which takes about 45 minutes, Wieband will be talking about Star Trek in general and his activities as a Spock double in particular. The show will be shown on Friday the 3rd of September at about 20:00 CET, though it will also be repeated on Sunday the 5th at midnight. More information on the show, which will be called 'Eine Sendung für Star Trek-Fans und Nicht-Star Trek-Fans' ('A broadcast for Star Trek fans and non-Star Trek fans') can be found by going here.

New Sev Trek Competition
Christian (2:50 pm CST)
John Cook at Sev Trek has posted a new edition of the 'Write Your Own Sev Trek Competion:'

Sev Trek header
Sev Trek - cartoon spoofs of Star Trek. Copyright 1997 by John Cook.

Take a look at what this week's competition deals with:

The bald doctor.
Why is the computer programmed EMH doctor bald? And more importantly, why doesn't he change his program to give himself some hair?!

As usual, you can submit your punchlines here.

Margaret Clark Answers Again
Christian (2:49 pm CST)
Pocket Books editor Margaret Clark has updated her Q&A page again, answering questions about the non-fiction Trek books. Take a look at two of the most interesting questions:

Query from: Michael
Is it common for "Star Trek" production personnel to approach pocket books with a proposal for a new book? Or is it Pocket Books who seeks the cooperation of people like Rick Sternbach and Michael Okuda on a book idea? If the earlier is true, how frequent is it and who's the most eager to help out on a new book?

Response from: Margaret Clark
Pocket Books always has the welcome mat out for anyone who has worked on Star Trek. How it works is lots of ways. Sometimes, we get book ideas that come from the production people. Sometimes, we'll seek out author's when we have an idea. The most eager? Once a book gets into production, you can't help but get caught up in the creative process behind it. I've found every author eager.

Query from: James
Hi Margaret, Is the Tech. Manual of the USS Enterprise-E any closer of being released in the not to distant future. Thank you for your time. James

Response from: Margaret Clark
No, since we really have not seen a lot of that ship. But the E will be covered in Starship Enterprise, coming out in the Fall of 2000.

More answers from Margaret Clark can be found at the actual Q&A Board.

Bob Blackman Chat Tonight
Christian (2:49 pm CST)
Tonight, the official Continuum will be hosting a live chat with Star Trek's Costume Designer Bob Blackman. The chat begins at 06:30pm Pacific Time, though you can already submit questions for the chat by going here. If you want to know how you can actually participate in the chat, information on that is also available.

Besides the Bob Blackman chat, the Continuum also has three more chats lined up for the next few weeks. Next week they'll be hosting a chat with Brent Spiner (Data), while the week after that (on the 9th of September), Voyager's Executive Producer Brannon Braga will be answering the fans' questions. Lastly, on the 16th of September, James Darren (Vic Fontaine) will be there to answer questions about his role on DS9 and his new CD 'This One's From The Heart.'

Tim Russ Convention Report
Christian (2:49 pm CST)
Diana Lynn at the Delta Quadrant Times has posted a report of last Sunday's Slanted Fedora convention in Fort Wayne, Indiana. One of the guests at the convention was Tim Russ (Tuvok), who provided several rather interesting news bits for Voyager's sixth season:

[Tim Russ] explained that the season would start out with Equinox part II, a Doctor episode, and then a Borg episode. Tim Russ told us that they had just finished filming Riddles. He said it was a riot to work with Ethan Phillips on this episode. "If I ever need a new brain" Russ said, "I'd want [Ethan's] because it's never been used. All he really said about Riddles story line was that Tuvok does some very different things. Russ kept complaining about how Phillips (Neelix) keeps harassing him and trying to get him to laugh on camera.

[...]

As far as Voyager's future goes, The show will defiantly run for seven years, maybe longer. There is no Voyager movie yet but Russ did say that there is going to be another Next Generation movie. Tim Russ' future looks bright though. He is coming out with a new CD. This one will be sold in stores and is going to have 10 songs unlike his last one that only had 4. He also has a movie and some other projects this summer.

In the full report, we get a few spoilers about the Doctor episode (presumably 'Tinker Tenor Doctor Spy'), which is now apparently confirmed to be the second episode of the season, replacing the pushed-back 'Barge of the Dead' episode. You can find it all by following this link.

'Timeless' Overnight Ratings
Christian (2:49 pm CST)
According to UltimateTV's Overnight Ratings report for yesterday, Voyager's rerun of 'Timeless' pulled in a 2.5 rating / 4 share, which is one tenth of a ratings point and one share point higher than last week. An hour earlier, UPN's 'Seven Days' got a 2.2/4, while, as usual, the WB easily beat UPN's ratings. 'Voyager' wasn't UPN's highest-rated show this week - as I reported yesterday, the network scored extremely well with the fall premieres of both 'Moesha' and 'Grown-Ups.'

Ten 'DS9: The Fallen' Screenshots
Christian (2:49 pm CST)
Gamespot has posted ten screenshots of 'Deep Space Nine: The Fallen,' the new third-person shooter in development by Collective Studios. Most of the screenshots seem to be new (and seem to be suffering from a severe lack of lighting), and, as usual, the only character they show is Benjamin Sisko. You can find the screenshots, which are part of a mini-preview written by Amer Ajami by going here. Thanks go out to Blue's News for the link.

Today On TV
Christian (2:48 pm CST)
-At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the TOS episode 'Whom Gods Destroy.'

-According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective, British Sky One will be showing Voyager's 'Death Wish' at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST.

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Die zweite Haut' (Second Skin) at 01:15 CET tomorrow morning. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Der Ausgesetzte.'

-And at 8:00pm, UPN, the network which also shows Voyager, will be showing the first edition of its 'WWF Smackdown!' program, which should hopefully return the network to somewhat higher ratings. As was recently announced by the WWF, some of their wrestlers will soon be making a guest appearance on Voyager, so some of you might actually want to watch as well to get a preview of what is to come.

Trek BBS Today
Christian (2:48 pm CST)
Here you'll find, as usual, a selection of interesting topics currently being discussed at the Trek BBS:

-At long last, we have a new Posting Leader at the BBS!

-Who is Star Trek's best Security/Tactical Officer?

-Why have we never seen Voyager's Aerowing in action?

You can find more topics at the Trek BBS.

Hello World!
Christian (2:48 pm CST)
Public internet terminals really aren't the best place to update an internet site, I'm afraid :-(. Not only do I have to cope with several other people sitting at the same table as me, busily typing away on whatever they're doing, but even worse is the fact that the screen resolution of this thing is set at an impossibly high (and unchangable) level, probably causing me permanent eye damage or something like that...

I'm still hopeful I'll be able to start updating from home on Friday or Saturday again - that's also when I'll start answering some more mail and when I'll put up several new Trek Nation articles which were sent in by some of our regular contributors. My apologies for the delay.

Link of the Day: Barbie Legs Used To Make Prosthetic Fingers

Wednesday August 25, 1999
ODN Issue 91 Appears
Christian (10:38 am CST)
Adam Bailey has sent out Volume 4, Issue 15 of the Optical Data Network, the bi-weekly Star Trek newsletter. Take a look at what you'll be able to find in this new ODN edition:

Present in this issue, as always, is a full (normal-sized) set of NewsBits, once again with an inflated software section. Never before have I seen so much going on with Trek games, mostly thanks to Activision (and to companies wanting to get in their last kicks before Activision takes over). For Star Trek fans who like to game, this is surely a golden age like none before it. There's also the official start date for Voyager: September 22, and word about who may end up as the Executive Producer of the new Trek series (the nature of which remains unconfirmed).

Proudly bearing the distinction of being our oldest regular feature not written by me, David Arquati returns with his standard UK Airdates article. [...] Elsewhere in this issue is the return of the Convention listing, back from too-long a slumber, and now featuring the addition of a good source: the TREKNEWSnetwork. This will help bolster our listing of conventions, and better ensure that nothing gets left out. We hope you find it a useful service. Also returning this issue is the Online Spotlight, with two new sites that were submitted.

Rounding out this issue is a rather interesting article I plucked out of Usenet. Brandon Williford, apparently having too much time on his hands, sat down and watched every single episode of Voyager's season five, keeping track of every single line spoken by a major character. His labor proved to make for some very interesting results. Everyone seems to have an opinion about who got too much or too little screen time, but now they can see if they were correct. My thanks to Brandon for expending the effort, it's quite an interesting read.

Combined with a few letters from readers, this new ODN issue should definitely be more than interesting. You can find it by going here.

A Take On Trek Tech
Christian (10:33 am CST)
Two days ago, Fred Shedian uploaded a new edition of his 'A Take On Trek' column to the Trek Nation. This week, his column deals with real-life technology, which seems to be overtaking 'Treknology' in some places:

When "The Cage" was written in the 1960s, the technology mentioned was very simple. Moving with the Star Trek timeline, phasers were not yet standard equipment. Instead, hand held laser pistols were common. Warp drive's development was described as the "break of the time bearer." Throughout the Original Series, first six movies, and early seasons of Next Generation, Star Trek technology was considered a front for the universe in which the story was told. Did writers ever expect critical, detail oriented fans, to utilize the technobabble as fact and the basis for some of our modern day miracles?

It is true that in present day society the line between science-ficition and science-fact is changing very day. Although we are still looking for the cure to the common cold, early versions of tricorders now exist. Indeed, even a PADD can now be found on the market. And of course, how can we forget our communicators....I mean cell phones? In one episode, Mr. Scott was quoted saying an ion drive was beyond the Federation's technological expertise. Yet, not to long ago, a probe was launched utilizing this same technology. Eat your heart out Scotty...

More on this can be found in the full column. After you've read it, please do send your comments to feedback@treknation.com - hopefully this week I won't loose all mail again :-(.

New 'Dominion War' Game Announced
Christian (10:33 am CST)
According to Federation HQ, there apparently is another Trek game in the works, which goes by the name of 'Dominion War.' The only confirmed info about the game (besides the storyline, which should be pretty obvious after seeing the title) comes from Paramount's Harry Lang, who apparently described the game as follows:

"3D real time space combat, similar in look and feel as to Armada, with a taste of Homeworld."

The original report can be found here.

'Free Enterprise' DVD/Video Release
Christian (10:33 am CST)
Captain.net is reporting that 'Free Enterprise,' the independent feature film starring William Shatner (James T. Kirk), will be released on Video and DVD on the 30th of November.

More 'Men Cry Bullets' Release Info
Christian (10:32 am CST)
The Official Jeri Lynn Ryan Homepage has some more info on the release of 'Men Cry Bullets,' the feature film debut of Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine). Here's what the film's producer told the JLR Homepage about the film's debut:

Men Cry Bullets will open as the Friday/Saturday midnight show in Los Angeles starting on September 17 at Laemmles Sunset 5, 8000 Sunset Blvd. The film will open as the Friday/Saturday midnight show in New York on October 1 at Angelika Film Center, 18 West Houston St. (corner of Houston and Mercer).

If the movie does well in this limited release, it would greatly increase the chances of it also being released in other cities, so if you live anywhere near where the film is shown, please do show your support for Jeri Ryan's film career and visit. The original report on this can be found on the JLR Homepage's news page.

CCG 'Klingon Challenge' Explanation
Christian (10:32 am CST)
Evan Lorentz at Decipher, the publisher of the official Star Trek Customizable Card Game, has written a new article explaining what precisely 'A Klingon Challenge' is. Apparently, at the top right corner of every CCG card, there is a phrase that indicates the source of the image. Two cards from the new Blaze of Glory expansion set have the phrase 'A Klingon Challenge' here, and many people were puzzled what this actually meant. Take a look at Decipher's explanation of the term:

This is not a misprint, easter egg, or preview of an upcoming Star Trek project. The images on those cards are taken from a VCR Interactive Game produced by Decipher several years ago, before even the CCG was created.

The game stars actor Robert O'Reilly (better known to most Star Trek fans as Gowron) as Kavok, a Klingon who hijacks the Enterprise. Original footage was shot specifically for the game with the consent and assistance of Paramount. Now we have taken two of these images and added them to the Star Trek CCG universe.

A bit more on this can be found in the full article.

Six New 'Armada' Screenshots
Christian (10:32 am CST)
Strategy Gaming Online have posted no less than six new screenshots of 'Armada,' Activion's new Trek-based real-time strategy game. Most of the shots show what seem to be Romulan vessels, though there is also a very nice shot of a Federation Sovereign-class starship. You can see all six pictures on this special screenshot page on SGO, thanks go out to Evil Avatar for the link.

Phoenix Rising Now 'Andromeda'
Christian (10:32 am CST)
Ain't It Cool News has put up what might well be the most complex report ever posted by that site, dealing with the new series starring Kevin Sorbo, based loosely on material left behind by Star Trek's creator Gene Roddenberry. As was previously reported, Sorbo will be starring in the series helmed by former DS9 writer Robert Hewitt Wolfe, which used to be called 'Phoenix Rising.' Now, the series, which will be produced by Tribune Entertainment, has apparently undergone a name change:

Many readers have written in telling me actor Kevin Sorbo (Hercules: The Legendary Journeys) has announced (in a very recent interview) that he will play the captain in the new series Gene Roddenberry's Andromeda. This is great news for me, as last week I posted Sorbo was interested in starring in one of three Gene Roddenberry posthumous series currently in development - whose titles were Phoenix Rising, Andromeda, Starship. Specifically, I indicated Sorbo was aiming towards either Phoenix Rising or Andromeda.

What many fans may not realize is that the Andromeda show with which Sorbo is now involved is actually Phoenix Rising, a series mentioned in the article linked above & being developed by Deep Space Nine's Robert Hewitt Wolfe. That's right: The Powers That Be have taken the name of one Roddenberry series-in-development and slapped it onto Phoenix Rising - a completely unrelated Roddenberry series-in-development. So, Phoenix Rising is now called Andromeda - and The Series Formerly Known as Andromeda now has no title at all (for the moment).

According to AICN, the Gene Roddenberry CGI series 'Starship' is still called 'Starship,' while no title is yet known for what used to be 'Andromeda.' Personally I believe that what used to be 'Andromeda' simply doesn't exist anymore - after all, Tribune originally announced they'd only be doing two new Roddenberry series. I also wonder why they actually changed the title - personally I thought 'Phoenix Rising' sounded rather good. Anyways, you can find the original AICN report by going here.

UPN Scores Again
Christian (10:31 am CST)
UPN's new season actually seems to be rather successful - not only did their 'The Source Hip Hop Music Awards' show give them their highest-ever Friday night ratings last week, on Monday the network also achieved its highest Monday night ratings in over a year. UPN (the station also showing 'Voyager') managed to pull in so many viewers with the fall season premiere of 'Moesha,' which achieved a 4.5 rating / 7 share, and a sneak preview of their new series 'Grown Ups,' which even got a 4.9/8 rating. A full Monday night ratings report can be found here, thanks go out to TV Guide for pointing out UPN's achievement.

Trek Bottled Water Label Design
Christian (10:31 am CST)
The Starbase-1 Coffee Company, which has already brought the world Star Trek coffee, tea and chocolates, has announced that its new Star Trek Bottled Water line will be launched in both the United States and Canada within the next 60 days. The beverage, which will be called 'Altair Water,' will be offered in "a wide range of sizes from 12 ounces to 1.5 liter." Furthermore, the water will be bottled in a customized new bottle, and will have its own special label, a picture of which can now be found here. The full press release announcing the imminent arrival of the water can be found by following this link.

Happy Birthday!
Christian (10:31 am CST)
Yesterday was the 29th birthday of Jennifer Lien, who starred on Voyager during its first three seasons as Kes.

Today On TV
Christian (10:30 am CST)
-This evening at 9:00pm, UPN will be repeating the rather great Voyager episode 'Timeless,' which first aired on the 18th of November, 1998. Take a look at how the official Continuum describes the episode:

Timeless - courtesy Paramount Pictures Fifteen years after the Starship U.S.S. Voyager crashes into a desolate ice planet, Commander Chakotay and former Ensign Harry Kim, sole survivors of the tragedy, steal the Delta Flyer from a Federation shipyard and return to the U.S.S. Voyager's frozen hull. Aided by Chakotay's striking love interest, Lieutenant Tessa Omond, Chakotay and Kim are hotly pursued fugitives with hope that somewhere embedded beneath the ice, they'll retrieve the only tools they believe can change the fate of their long-dead fellow crew members.

Thanks go out to the Continuum for both the description and the image, which is of course copyrighted by Paramount Pictures.

-At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing another episode in their 'Kirk's Women' theme week, namely 'Elaan of Troyius.'

-According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective, British Sky One will be showing Voyager's 'Dreadnaught' at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. At 18:00 BST, BBC Two will be showing DS9's 'Paradise.'

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Das Equilibrium' (Equilibrium) tomorrow morning at 01:40 CET. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Die zweite Haut' (Second Skin).

Trek BBS Today
Christian (10:30 am CST)
As, of course, we haven't had a 'Trek BBS Today' topic for two days now, here are the most interesting discussions currently taking place at the Trek BBS:

-Who is Star Trek's best Chief Engineer?

-Now that Ira Behr and Ron Moore have left the Star Trek franchise, do you think there still is a chance we will ever see the DS9 characters again?

-The Borg strive to 'achieve perfection,' but what is their actual definition of that?

Find more topics at the Trek BBS!

Hello World!
Christian (10:30 am CST)
Incredibly, I've actually found the time to do another update again, even if I'm typing this from behind a public internet terminal in the library. Hopefully I should be able to update from home sometime soon again. Meanwhile, I'd still very much appreciate it if the following people would contact me, as I lost their e-mail address in my hard disk crash:

Though I do think I'll be able to do another update tomorrow, I'm not 100% certain - it all depends on how soon I get my net connection at home up and running.

Monday August 23, 1999
Autograph Cards With German Video
Christian (3:18 pm CST)
Our German partner site TrekZone.de is reporting that CIC Germany will be including a autograph card of Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine) with every copy of 'Dark Frontier,' or, as the Germans like to call it, 'Das ungewisse Dunkel.' Apparently, buying the video will be the only possibly way for Germans to actually see the Voyager TV movie, as it has been banned from being on shown on German television for the near future. In this way, CIC will be able to make a large profit out of 'Dark Frontier' - the video should sell extremely well, considering CIC will be spending close to DM 300.000 ($150.000) on television spots and magazine ads.

New Starfleet Command Review
Christian (3:01 pm CST)
The Antagonist Games Network (who comes up with these names anyway?) has put up a review of Interplay's new 'Starfleet Command' game, awarding it no less than 85%. Refreshingly, though, reviewer Johnny Law finds several nits which only a hardcore Trek fan would be able to find:

While the Starfleet Command's graphics don't do for Star Trek what X-Wing Alliance does for Star Wars, it comes reasonably close. The ships are pretty detailed at close range, but unfortunately, those details also reveal technical flaws.

For example, even though my ship might be called the U.S.S. Monitor (NCC-5005), zooming in unfortunately reveals an entirely different name and fleet callsign. Other little "cracks" rear their ugly heads too, including the fact that phasers don't fire from the correct spot on a Light Cruiser (think Reliant). While the "average" person might overlook these sorts of things, Trekkers are hardly average people. They'll be all over this like Denebian Slime Devils on an Altarian mucous vent.

The full review can be found here. Thanks go out, as usual, to Federation HQ for this.

John Ordover Provides NF Spoilers
Christian (3:01 pm CST)
Pocket Books editor John Ordover just updated his Q&A board with several more answers to questions about his Star Trek novels. In one of his answers, he even provides a lot of info on several upcoming Trek books:

Query from: Antoine
Okay. General questions now instead of the praises. FIRST, what is the GENERAL Synopsis of Peter David's next NF books? What will next year's Series be, I heard something about a parallel universe thing going. Who from the Parllel universe will we see? Maybe a return of Kira for that one was really left open. What other big things do we have to look foward to next year in Trek books? And I know I asked you this before but is I,Q some sort of sequal to Q- Squared? And what's up with this Voyager and DS9 triology next year with the addition of Section 31? Im just asking so I can start getting into them now! Thanks

Response from: John Ordover
I'm having a little trouble parsing out your questions, so bear with me. The next NF books involve Si Cwan finally finding his sister and Calhoun finding his long-lost son. There is a two book series coming late 2000/2001 called DARK PASSIONS set in DS9's mirror universe and starring the Intendant, Mirror-Deanna, Mirror-Annika Hansen, but that's not next year's crossover. You have lots of big things to look forward to.:) I, Q is not a sequel to Q- Squared. The DS9 Milennium trilogy is Margaret's. The Voyager trilogy is called DARK MATTERS and is by Christie Golden, and deals with minor matters like the end of the Universe. Not sure what you mean about the addition of S31.

More answers from Ordover can be found by following this link.

UPN Scores Highest Friday Rating
Christian (3:00 pm CST)
TV Guide is reporting that UPN scored its highest-ever Friday night rating with its broadcast of 'The Source Hip Hop Music Awards.' The show scored a 4.2 rating / 8 share, which not only gave the network its best-ever Friday ratings, but also the highest on any night since May 26. The show scored especially well in urban markets, apparently. The full report on this can be found on TV Guide's news page.

Yet Another Starfleet Command Review
Christian (3:00 pm CST)
Wewp! Entertainment has put up a review of 'Starfleet Command,' Interplay's new real-time strategy game which everyone seems to love. Reviewer Mike Shears liked the game from the start:

From the opening movie to my first battle, I knew this was going to be a lot of fun. The game features three modes of play: Campaign, Skirmish, and network/Internet play. With 6 empires from the Star Trek universe to play with - Federation, Klingon, Romulan, Gorn, Hydran, and Lyran, as well as the Orion Pirates tossed in for good measure - the game has a lot of things for the player to do.

The full review can be found here. Thanks go out to Evil Avatar for the link.

Today on TV
Christian (2:59 pm CST)
-At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing what many consider to be the Original Series' best episode, 'The City On The Edge Of Forever.' This is part of a special "Kirk's Women" theme week on the Sci-Fi Channel.

-According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective, British Sky One will be showing the horrible Voyager episode 'Threshold' at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST.

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Die Suche, Teil 2' (The Search, Part Two) at five minutes past midnight. At 15:00 CET, they'll be showing 'Das Haus des Quark' (The House of Quark).

Trek BBS Today
Christian (2:59 pm CST)
Here is the usual selection of interesting Trek BBS topics, returning after a day's absence:

-How many online Trek fans do you think there are?

-Is the Enterprise really powered by whales and comics?

-Are there any WebTV users at the BBS?

You can participate in all these Trek BBS threads and more at the actual Trek BBS!

Hello World!
Christian (2:58 pm CST)
Do you know what the worst feeling in the universe is? The dawning realisation that together with the crash which wiped out your copy of Windows '98, you also lost the past two years of e-mails! For all that time, I treasured my mails, and could, if I wanted to, even re-read the very first e-mail I had ever sent. Unfortunately, since yesterday morning, all that is gone, and I can tell you - it sucks.

Unfortunately, what that also means is that I've irretrievably lost the e-mail addresses of several people, the last two weeks of mailbag mails (yes, I hate that too), several comics Q&A questions, and of course also several e-mails I hadn't answered yet. Therefore, could the following people please contact me as soon as possible:

If you aren't on this list and did sometimes exchange e-mail with me, and are not on my ICQ contact list, please do also send me mail.

In other news which may surprise, tomorrow might be the first day in six months without a TrekToday update, as I myself am moving. Thanks to my new laptop (which I actually mainly bought for situations such as this) I do hope I'll still be able to do a mini-update, but I'm sure you'll understand if I give precedence to getting my stuff unpacked instead :-)

Sunday August 22, 1999
Interplay Open New 'New Worlds' Site
Christian (3:34 pm CST)
David Tan just mailed me to let me know that Interplay have apparently opened a new version of their 'Star Trek: New World' web site. In addition to the screenhots of the game they were already offering, they've also released a 24.8 MB movie of the game - the same one which is also included with Interplay's new 'Starfleet Command' game. A playable demo should be out oon. You can find the new web site here.

Colm Meany In 'Mystery, Alaska'
Christian (3:34 pm CST)
Colm Meaney, who used to star on 'Deep Space Nine' as Chief Miles O'Brien, will be appearing in a supporting role in the upcoming film Mystery, Alaska. Take a look at what the plot of the film i, according to the IMDB:

When Mystery, Alaska's amateur hockey team accepts a challenge to play against the New York Rangers, the entire population must put their petty differences aside and pull together as their small town becomes the center of a nationally televised event.

A preview of the film is now apparently being shown before the new film 'Mystery Men.' Thanks go out to Eston Melton for this.

German Voyager Air Schedule
Christian (3:34 pm CST)
Besides the DS9 schedule which they already posted a few weeks ago, the German Star Trek Index has now also posted the official Sat.1 schedule for Voyager. The schedule shows all Voyager episodes which will be shown from the 28th of August until the 18th of September - five in total, as Sat.1 will stop broadcasting two Voyager episodes every Saturday when DS9's 7th season starts. You can find the full German schedule here.

Brent Spiner Done On 'Gepetto'
Christian (3:34 pm CST)
Welcome, Brent Spiner Fans! is reporting that Brent Spiner (Data) has finished work on the Disney made-for-tv musical 'Gepetto,' in which he plays the evil puppeteer Stromboli. Presumably this means that René Auberjonois (Odo) and Scarlett Pomers (Naomi Wildman), who also have a small part in the film, have finished filming as well.

'Star Trek: New Worlds' Editorial
Christian (3:33 pm CST)
Steve Erhardt at Evil Avatar has posted a mini-editorial about 'New Worlds,' the upcoming real-time strategy game by Interplay. Though Erhardt thinks Interplay's 'Starfleet Command' and 'Klingon Academy' look pretty cool, he also believes 'New Worlds' will prove to be a masive disappointment:

New Worlds is gonna flop, and it's not necessarily because of a bad game design (More like uninspired.). I think the most recent ads for the game explain it real well if you read between the lines: "We've added the ultimate feature to real-time strategy... Star Trek."

Kind of says it all, doesn't it? How many games have we seen get flushed down the toilet because the best thing they had to offer was the Star Trek name, rather than good gameplay? Adding a Star Trek veneer to an RTS game is no guarantee it's gonna be good. In fact, with a GROUND-BASED RTS, you've practically just shot yourself in the foot.

The full editorial, which I myself tend to agree with, can be found here.

Domain Broker Registers 'Flight Academy'
Christian (3:32 pm CST)
Jut over a month ago, on the 12th of July, domain name company Keith Malley registered a domain which will surely interest a lot of you - StarTrekFlightAcademy.com. According to the site's For Sale list, this domain can actually be bought as part of a package including seven other domains such as TheGodfather4.com and TeachingMrsTingle.com, for the total price of $2,479.51. The company is already describing 'Flight Academy' as the 'next Star Trek series,' even though nothing at all has been officially announced yet. Without a doubt, as other names for the next Trek series start popping up, other domain name brokers will be quick to register domain related to them.

Oh, and in case you were wondering, FlightAcademy.com belongs to a Dallas-based flight school, while FlightAcademy.net has also already been registered.

Hello World!
Christian (3:32 pm CST)
Fate must be holding a grudge against me. Though most of you will not have realised it, today is actually a special day for TrekToday, as the site was officially opened precisely six months ago! Naturally, that is cause for celebration, especially considering I haven't missed even one day of updating in that time, but, unfortunately, my computer chose precisely today to break down on me. In the middle of receiving my mail this morning, it suddenly went dead, and when it started up again, many crucial system files were actually corrupted. Fortunately, I still had my brand new laptop, but unfortunately no software has been installed on that yet - plus the extra external keyboard associated with it has an 's' key which only seems to work after repeated slamming on it.

The results of this are that:


Saturday August 21, 1999
New Voyager Syndication Promo
Christian (3:43 pm CST)
Mr. Video Productions has put up a new Voyager syndication promo, called 'New Star.' The promo, which has been created to advertise the arrival of Voyager's first five seasons for daily syndication, runs for 30 seconds, and has a size of approximately 5.7 MB. You can download it by visiting Vidiot's Syndication Promo page.

Trek Toys Are Shipping
Christian (3:43 pm CST)
The Raving Toy Maniac is reporting that several Playmates Trek action figures have begun shipping to retailers:

  • Target Exclusive Tholian Twin Pack with Spock and Kirk in interphase
  • Target Transporter Exclusives Rand and Chapel
  • 5" Target Exclusives Riker and Troi
  • 9" Kay-Bee Exclusives Trelane and Keeler
  • 12" Wave 3, including the Gorn, Scotty, Sulu and Troi

Furthermore, the Maniac is also reproting that the official Star Trek Fan Club now has their exclusive 'Captain Kirk as a Romulan' (from 'The Enterprise Incident') available for order at the official Star Trek Store. More information on this figure (and the reason for its rather high $69 price) can be found at the Toy Maniac's Trek news page.

New James Darren Article
Christian (3:43 pm CST)
The Star Trek Continuum's Debora Fisher has written a new article about the new James Darren CD 'This One's From The Heart.' The article contains the rathr interesting news that Darren originally didn't even want to be on Deep Space Nine:

James Darren thought when he turned down the initial offer to play a Las Vegas-style lounge singer in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine that that would be the end of that. A 60s heartthrob as Moondoggie in Gidget movies and a contemporary of The Rat Pack, Darren had quietly stopped singing some 12 years ago when he started directing television.

"I didn't want to play a singer," says Darren of his agent's first call regarding Star Trek. "I'd fallen into directing when I was doing T.J. Hooker and I loved not having to shave. But the Trek producers had called my agent back and asked if I would do a courtesy read of the script. Once I read 'His Way,' it was me on the phone saying I wanted to meet these guys!"

One thing led to another, and now his own musical career has even been relaunched thanks to Trek, as is also mentioned in the full Continuum article, together with a touching description of the final 'What You Leave Behind' scene, a mention of the producers' enthusiasms for Vic Fontaine, and info on the actual recording of the CD. Click here to read it.

Federation HQ Starfleet Command Review
Christian (3:41 pm CST)
Trek gaming site Federation HQ has put up a new in-depth review of 'Starfleet Command,' Interplay's new real-time strategy game. Not surprisingly considering all the praise this game has already received, the Federation HQ reviewer rather liked the game:

Starfleet Command is not yet another space shooter, but a real-time tactical simulation that portrays starship combat in the Star Trek Universe based on a twenty year old board game called Starfleet Battles with rulebooks the size of your average telephone book.

Interplay's translation of the board game is admirably well done. They've basically eliminated the necessity of having to familiarize yourself with all the rules and statistical wizardry of the board game and made the game accessible to the casual gamer, yet retained the depth which one would expect of a good war game.

The full review, split over 8 pages, can be found here.

More On Braga Leaving Rumours
Christian (3:41 pm CST)
Steve Krutzler at TrekWeb has posted the following update on yesterday's story which mentioned that Voyager's executive producer Brannon Braga would be leaving the show mid-season to work on Series V:

TrekWeb has been in contact with an additional source who says that Brannon Braga is planning to leave AFTER the end of the sixth season to work on the new series, not at midseason as reported by another source. It is for the final season of Voyager that Ken Biller would take over as Executive Producer.

As is also mentioned in the full TrekWeb report, please remember that none of this is official yet.

New Book On Trek's Computers
Christian (3:41 pm CST)
Robert Weinberg, co-author of upcoming 'The Computers of Star Trek' book, just sent in the following news announcement about his new unauthorized Trek book:

In late November of this year, Basic Books will be publishing THE COMPUTERS OF STAR TREK by Lois H. Gresh and Robert Weinberg. While there have been numerous books published on the physics, the biology, the metaphysics, and the philosophy of STAR TREK, there's never been a book solely devoted to the one subject that binds all the universe of Trek together - the computers. Our book covers in depth such topics as Data, Artificial Intelligence, the ship's computer system, the Borg, the Holodeck, space war, and many other computer related topics. We compare today's computer systems with those three hundred years from now and come up with some pretty astonishing (and fun) results.

[...]

While the book is due out in November from Basic Books (in hardcover, at $22.00 - you can pre-order it now from Amazon.com at 30% off!), Lois and I are extremely anxious to publicize our book now so it doesn't get lost among the many huge Christmas book promotions. Thus, Lois has posted on her web page an entire chapter from the book that was deleted because of space limitations. There are over 4,000 words of non-fiction about our favorite computer-oriented episodes of STAR TREK and why we picked them. This is material that won't be found in the book, only on the Net.

As is mentioned in the above news submission, you can find this additional chapter by going here.

Star Trek Pizzas Are Free
Christian (3:40 pm CST)
As was already reported a few weeks ago, this weekend a Star Trek TNG marathon will be held in San Francisco by the KBHK television station, which will be accompanied by the first-ever experiment in ordering pizzas using your remote control. Now, the San Jose Mercury has a new article about this which mentions that all pizzas ordered during the marathon will actually be free:

This weekend, some Bay Area ``Star Trek'' fans will boldly go where no one has gone before, at least not from a recliner. During a ``Star Trek: The Next Generation'' marathon on KBHK (Ch. 44), viewers with Microsoft's WebTV Plus set-top box will see interactive commercials for Domino's that enable them to order pizzas via remote control. No need to budge -- they'll just punch a few keys and a pizza will materialize at their doorstep.

Better yet, the pizzas are free. But that's just because the event is a promotion for B3TV, the San Francisco-based start-up providing the technology that bridges the gap between science fiction and real-time pizza delivery.

The full article, which was written by Jon Healey, goes into a bit more detail about the pizza-ordering system, which will actually only be usable for WebTV users. You can find it all here.

Happy Birthday!
Christian (3:40 pm CST)
Today is the 43rd birthday of Kim Cattrall, who starred as Lieutenant Valeris in 'Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country.'

Today On TV
Christian (3:39 pm CST)
-Tomorrow in the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Sacrifice of Angels' at 16:00 BST, followed an hour later by Voyager's 'Initiations,' according to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective.

-At midnight, German Sat.1 will be repeating Voyager's 'Die neue Identität.' At 11:05 CET tomorrow, they'll be repeating 'Temporale Sprünge.'

-At 9:00pm Eastern Time, the new TV movie 'Introducing Dorothy Dandridge,' starring Halle Berry and Brent Spiner (Data) will premiere on US cable channel HBO.

Trek BBS Today
Christian (3:39 pm CST)
If you're feeling bored on a regular weekend day like today, below you'll find some more than interesting Trek BBS discussions to take part in:

-Is Seven of Nine really a child trapped in a woman's body, or is she simply an alien from another culture?

-Do you think William Shatner should return as Captain Kirk, even without Paramount's blessing?

Find more threads at the Trek BBS!

Hello World!
Christian (3:39 pm CST)
I now know it for sure: almost every computer store here in the Netherlands is staffed by people who are either dishonest or simply incompetent, and I've got the statistical evidence to prove it. In total, I've bought six computers in my life. Quite literally none of those actually worked when we actually arrived home with it. We've had a computer store sell us a faulty monitor, another one deciding not to install Windows after still charging a standard $50 installation fee, and another one which forgot to plug in the processor (I kid you not).

Last week, I bought a new laptop, and yesterday the store called to tell me it had arrived. Remembering my previous experiences with computer equipment, I asked them if I could see the laptop running and everything functioning in the store. I am so happy I did that, as, needless to say, everything did not function. The modem didn't function ('Oops, hadn't tested that yet'), the external mouse refused to immediately work, and all of Windows hadn't been correctly installed. In the end, it took them no less than 3 hours to actually get everything working - why didn't they bother to actually test their equipment before they sold it to me? Of course, if I'd made the mistake of not asking to see it running before I took it home with me, I'd probably have spent the entire weekend trying to make it work, and then later needing to fight with them to actually fix it - with two previous computers, I was actually accused of being the one who broke the computer.

Fortunately, everything is now working (and the laptop is still pretty cool, running at no less than 366 lovely Megahertz and having a 13.3" screen), but I don't think I'll ever be able to trust anyone who sells computers anymore.

(BTW, before all the mails start pouring in again, yes, I'm sure you are actually a salesman who does know something about computers :-)

Friday August 20, 1999
New Rumours About Trek's Future
Christian (1:54 pm CST)
TrekWeb has posted several new reports on Trek's future which range from the very interesting to the truly bizarre. The first one deals with another staff change for 'Voyager,' one which is not that surprising considering the upcoming new series:

"Here's the deal: Biller left because he was steamed at Moore coming in above him. Moore gets forced out, Biller's wooed back in with the promise that he'll be show-runner when Braga moves over to series five. Multiple sources say the handoff happens at mid- season, which tracks well with how long it takes to get a series off the ground by fall 2000."

As TrekWeb also stresses, this is still just a rumour, but it's certainly more than interesting. After that, TrekWeb has two more news items, one of which is yet another confirmation of the 'Flight Academy' concept, which certainly seems to be looking more and more real. The last rumour is certainly very surprising, and deals with (wait for it) Deanna Troi and Reginald Barclay joining Voyager! This doesn't really sound like something which would actually happen, but you can still read about it in the full TrekWeb update. Meanwhile, what are your thoughts on all this? Please send them in to feedback@treknation.com so we can use them in this weekend's mailbag!

Eon Reviews TOS DVDs
Christian (1:53 pm CST)
Jeff Bond at Eon Magazine has put up a review of the first two Original Series DVDs, which were released by Paramount just a few days ago. As most reviewers, Bond thinks the DVDs have been done pretty well:

For Trekkers who've been slowly wearing out their overpriced Classic TREK videos, the DVDs are a dream come true, finally putting the episodes in mint, remastered form on a medium that won't wear out (we think, anyway). And two episodes per disc might seem generous at $19.95 a pop ($11.00 at amazon.com) when you have to pay $12-$15 for one on video. But that still means we have to buy forty of these things to collect the entire series...at which time Paramount will probably start rolling out STAR TREK: THE SPECIAL EDITION DVDs.

The full review, in which Bond awards the episode an A-, can be found here.

Brent Spiner Con Transcript
Christian (1:53 pm CST)
Welcome, Brent Spiner Fans! has posted a transcript of the recent appearance by Brent Spiner (Data) at the Creation convention in San Francisco, on the 7th of August. The transcript is incredibly long, and has Spiner talking about being famous, his new TV movie 'Introducing Dorothy Dandridge,' his role on TNG and, of course, Star Trek X:

Someone in the Audience: Is that true that the next Star Trek X will be the last one for you and Next Generation?

Brent Spiner: Well, that's an interesting question. He's asking if Star Trek X will be the last movie that our group does. You know what? To be completely honest with you, I'm not even sure we're going to do number 10. I haven't heard anything about it. It's not like, they call me (BS: chuckling), they don't call me and say, ah, we're gonna be doing this in two years, and we really want you to do it. It really comes at the last second, they have this script and they say, ok, we're going to do this, do you want to be in it? Ah, so I have no idea if were even going to be in the next one. Hum, probably are, but we're all happy to do one more. We'd like to. A really good (weird?) one.

SA: (something about ST X being the movie where DS9 crew would take over the franchise)

BS:That DS9 is going to be handed over to? If the next one is the last one? I seriously doubt that (laughter)but, I don't know. Maybe. I think we could do one where all the shows were combined and there were people from everything. I don't know if they can afford that (laugthter). But, you know we could do it, like... It could be a desert motif, (laughter) ah, (BS: chuckling) the whole movie takes place in the desert and so, you know, they save a lot of money because they don't have to build any sets (laughter), and then. But I don't know what's going to happen. I really don't. I hope we're in one more.

SA: nothing lasts forever...

BS: Yeah, exactly. Nothing lasts forever. But you know, I still feel that we have...That if they ask us to do another one, we're thrilled because we really want to do one more. But, if they don't, we will have done something like 186 hours of Star Trek, and nobody got cheated, really. So, ah, it'd be great if we can do it, but if we can't, that's fine too. Yes, sir...

The full transcript (which, as I said, is HUGE and could easily take you a long time to read) can be found here.

New Sev Trek Competition
Christian (1:53 pm CST)
John Cook at Sev Trek has put up a new edition of the 'Write Your Own Sev Trek Competition:'

Sev Trek header
Write Your Own Sev Trek Competition - cartoon spoofs of Star Trek. Copyright 1999 by John Cook.

Take a look at what this week's competition deals with:

Oohlala's earpiece.
Here we finally explain what that contraption that hangs of Oohlala's ear really is.

You can submit your punchlines here. Presumably you get bonus points if you also include a reason for Oohlala sitting on the wrong side of the bridge :-).

Lolita Fatjo Talks Voyager
Christian (1:52 pm CST)
Karen Bennett, newsletter editor of the Canadian Trek fan club U.S.S. Hudson Bay, just sent me a transcript of a speech Paramount's Lolita Fatjo gave at the Toronto Trek convention in July. As the Hudson Bay is currently having troubles with its web site, they haven't yet been able to put it up at their web site, but fortunately you'll be able to already find some of Fatjo's most newsworthy answers from the con here below:

Q: Is there anything you can tell us about what projects [the former DS9 writers] are working on?

A: Ira has another year of a development deal at Paramount, so I think he's working on some pilots and some features. Right now, Ron Moore is taking a long-overdue vacation. René Echevarria went to New York to help run a new show called Now and Again or Now and Then, something like that [it's called Once and Again, and will run on ABC-Ed.], that was created by the people who did Moonlighting. Hans Beimler is working on The Profiler.

Q: There's a rumour floating around the Internet [that says] that Paramount wants to make Harry Kim and Tom Paris more available, and that they're going to break up Tom and B'Elanna. Is there any truth to this?

A: That's a total Internet rumour. Tom and Harry more available for each other? No, Tom and B'Elanna are very much together right now. In the episode we're doing right now, called "Barge of the Dead," it's a huge Torres episode. We learn a lot about her background, and Tom is right there with her. That's just one of those things that people start on the Internet who have 'way too much time on their hands.

Q: I'm glad you mentioned that you still have an open-script policy, because at a panel I attended yesterday, somebody said that because of some legal problems, Star Trek wasn't doing this any more.

A: Who is that? Bring him to meet me. No, we absolutely are doing it and we welcome Voyager scripts right now, because I just gave 20 of them out to be read and I really don't have a backlog right now.

I'm a bit surprised to hear they don't have a script backlog anymore - didn't they use to have thousands of scripts waiting for them just a few years ago? Anyway, major thanks go out to Karen Bennett for sending this in - be sure to regularly check out the U.S.S. Hudson Bay's web site regularly so you'll be able to read the full transcript in the new edition of their newsletter (the 'Voyageur'), when they manage to put it online.

Official 'The Lot' Site
Christian (1:51 pm CST)
American Movie Classics has opened an official web site for their new 4-part mini-series 'The Lot,' starring Jonathan Frakes (William T. Riker). The web site includes information on the story, the cast, the show itself, and a collection of actual Hollywood news items from the year 1937 (where the series takes place). You can find the site by following this link. Thanks go out to the Continuum's news report for this.

First Wildstorm Comics Sketches
Christian (1:51 pm CST)
AnotherUniverse's Daily Buzz has posted the first two art samples of WildStorm's upcoming Star Trek comics line, one showing Captain Kirk, and the other one showing Seven of Nine. You can find the sketches by going here.

In related news, AnotherUniverse's Newsarama includes a short interview with Jeff Mariotte, the Star Trek editor at Wildstorm. Not all of the quotes from Mariotte seem to be completely new, but he does provide some interesting information on the future of the Trek comics line. Click here to read the interview. Also remember that you yourself can ask questions to Jeff Mariotte at his Comics Q&A Board, where he regularly answers your questions!

Today On TV
Christian (1:50 pm CST)
-The Television Observation Unit of the newly resurrected Star Trek Collective is reporting that British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Favour the Bold' at 16:00 tomorrow. At 17:00, they'll be showing Voyager's 'The 37s.'

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Die Suche, Teil 1' (The Search, Part One). At 15:00 tomorrow, they'll be showing Voyager's 'Die neue Identität,' followed an hour later by 'Temporale Sprünge.'

Trek BBS Today
Christian (1:50 pm CST)
Here's the usual selection of interesting Trek BBS topics:

-What are your thoughts on the recent rumours stating that Brannon Braga will be leaving Voyager, and will be replaced by Kenneth Biller?

-What should we do about our useless users?

Find more at the Trek BBS!

Hello World!
Christian (1:50 pm CST)
No Hello from me today - not enough time to come up with an inspiring piece, unfortunately...

Thursday August 19, 1999
Voyager Season Six News
Christian (4:23 pm CST)
NOTE: Below you'll find rather huge spoilers for Voyager's sixth season. If you want to avoid being spoiled, click here to move on to the next update.

Again, click here if you do not want to be spoiled.

Michael Iversen at the Universe has posted a rather large amount of spoilers for Voyager's sixth season. The first one deals with the B'Elanna Torres episode 'Barge of the Dead,' which is apparently undergoing reshoots:

Barge of the dead has been pushed back because it is not very good, and they are doing a ton of reshoots and recuts. This episode is the episode that was written by Ronald D. Moore and Bryan Fuller. (Fuller wrote the script) RDM left Voyager's production team a month ago without an official reason.

My source later added: Like I said, Barge of the dead has been pushed back, and no one has anything good to say about it so far. The script seemed pretty lame, and I guess the real thing isnt going much better.

The reshoot thing at least seems to be valid - only two days ago, internet spoiler provider Dangermouse posted a message to Usenet stating that 'Barge of the Dead' is getting some reshoots, and has been pushed back to a few episodes later in the season.

Besides the 'Barge of the Dead' info, the Universe also has new info on 'Survival Instinct,' 'Tinker Tenor Doctor Spy' and 'Alice,' which will all probably air as part of the first five episodes or so. You can find all the info by visiting the Universe's Voyager news page - it really is very interesting!

New 'Insurrection: Hidden Evil' Preview
Christian (4:13 pm CST)
Gamecenter has posted a new preview of 'Hidden Evil,' the game based on last year's feature film 'Insurrection.' The preview contains some interesting information on what we'll be able to see in the game:

Unlike some recent adventure games that take a full-3D third-person perspective, Star Trek: Hidden Evil is almost a throwback to traditional adventure games. The game sports beautifully rendered hand-drawn 2D environments with real-time 3D characters and special effects rendered on the fly. The effect is somewhat similar to LucasArts' Grim Fandango. The artists involved had full access to all of the sets and production drawings from the film. With the exception of reproducing various areas of the Enterprise E, they used these set drawings as launching points for the areas you'll explore during the game. Hidden Evil will show new areas of the Ba'ku village, the aforementioned alien cities, Romulan facilities, and even areas of the Enterprise that were implied, but not shown, in the movie.

Find more on the game in the full preview, written by Allen Rausch. Thanks go out to TrekWeb for the link.

'The Lives Of Dax' Cover
Christian (4:12 pm CST)
NikkiDeBoer.com has posted scans of cover of the new Pocket Books anthology 'The Lives Of Dax,' containing a story for each one of Dax's hosts. Take a look at the promotion text which can be found on the back cover:

Mother, father, engineer, ambassador, scientist, statesman, serial killer, Starfleet officer: At one time or another, Dax has been all of these things and more. The near-immortal part of a composite species known as the Trill, Dax is a sentient wormlike symbiont joined body and mind to a succession of humanoid hosts, carrying the memories of each lifetime into the next. Each incarnation is different. Each has its own personality, its own triumphs, its own tragedies, its own dreams. And each one... is Dax.

You can find the full cover, spine and back scans (which are all about 130k) by going here.

In related news, Marco Palmieri, editor of 'The Lives of Dax,' has posted the final titles of each story in the anthology, and the names of the authors writing them. You can find this list of titles by following this link.

Short 'Voyager: Elite Force' Preview
Christian (4:12 pm CST)
Glide Underground has posted a new preview of 'Voyager: Elite Force,' the upcoming first-person shooter set aboard Voyager. Unfortunately, the preview is only one page long, so there isn't really that much new info, though it does mention that the actual cast still hasn't been contracted to do voice-overs for the game. You can find the preview here, while thanks go out to Federation HQ for the link.

'Introducing Dorothy Dandridge' Reviews
Christian (4:12 pm CST)
Welcome, Brent Spiner Fans! has links to two new reviews of 'Introducing Dorothy Dandridge,' the new HBO movie starring Halle Berry and Brent Spiner (Data) which premieres this weekend. The first review, by feist.net's Lisa A. Sillaway-Henshall , isn't that positive about the film, criticising the lack of chemistry between the two stars. More positive is Variety's Laura Fries, who has a lot of kind things to say about Spiner's performance in her review.

'Men Cry Bullets' Release
Christian (4:09 pm CST)
The official Jeri Lynn Ryan Homepage is reporting that 'Men Cry Bullets,' the film debut of Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine), will be released in December, according to the new issue of Entertainment Weekly.

First Season Six Images
Christian (4:09 pm CST)
'Barge of the Dead' photo - courtesy Star Trek News & Star Trek Monthly Magazine, Copyright Paramount Pictures Jason Davidson at Star Trek News has posted the very first pictures from Voyager's sixth season - four publicity stills which appeared in the British 'Star Trek Monthly' magazine. The photos are all from 'Barge of the Dead,' which is an episode focused around B'Elanna Torres dealing with Klingon hell. You can find the four pictures on Star Trek News's Voyager Info Page, but, be warned, some of them show major spoilers for the actual episode.

Ten Voyager Screenshots
Christian (4:09 pm CST)
CRUS.com, the people who have managed to be mentioned here on TrekToday three days in a row now, have put up a collection of ten screenshots of Raven's upcoming 'Voyager: Elite Force' game. As was the case with their Insurrection: Hidden Evil and their Armada screenshots, some of the screenshots are already known, but a sizable proportion of the ten are actually completely new. You can find the screenshots by going here.

Syndicated Voyager Sattelite Schedule
Christian (4:08 pm CST)
Mr. Video Productions has put up information on the satellite feed schedule for Voyager episodes, for when the first five seasons start running in daily syndication a few weeks from now. The page contains info on when and where you'll be able to get the episodes via your sattelite, while it also contains some very interesting info on the precise contract terms for Voyager syndication. You can find the page by going here.

Nicole deBoer Starburst Interview
Christian (4:08 pm CST)
After re-printing a 'Star Trek Monthly Magazine interview with Nicole deBoer (Ezri Dax) yesterday, NikkiDeBoer.com has now also put up another interview with the former DS9 star, which first appeared in 'Starburst.' In it, she mentions that she still hasn't gotten the one thing she wanted to get out of Star Trek when she joined:

"But, having done the show and the conventions, I still haven't met Patrick Stewart. That really sucks. That was the one thing I wanted out of Star Trek when I signed on. I said, 'I'm going to meet Patrick Stewart now!' I almost had a chance. I was invited to the big premiere of Insurrection and I got to go on the private plane they used to take people to [Las Vegas]. I did see him on the plane, but he was busy talking to Majel Roddenberry. I thought, 'Oh, I don't want to disturb him. I'll talk to him later.' But after the movie, he got whisked right back to New York, because he was doing a play on Broadway. I was like, 'Ugh! I totally missed him.' I was so upset."

In the rest of the interview, DeBoer talks about her role on DS9, and the things she's been doing after the end of the series.

'In The Flesh' Overnight Ratings
Christian (4:08 pm CST)
According to UltimateTV's Overnight Ratings report, yesterday's Voyager rerun of 'In The Flesh' scored a 2.4 rating / 5 share, which is the exact same performance as last week. An hour earlier, 'Seven Days' grabbed a 2.0/4, while the WB easily beat UPN with an average rating of 2.7. The full ratings report can be found here.

Happy Birthdays!
Christian (4:08 pm CST)
Lots of birthdays today! First of all, it's the 47th birthday of Jonathan Frakes, who starred in TNG as Commander William T. Riker, and who directed the last two Trek feature films. Secondly, it's the 61th birthday of Diane Muldaur, who starred as Dr. Katherine Pulaski on TNG during its second season, and who also made two guest appearances on the original Star Trek. Last, but certainly not least, today would have been the 78th birthday of Gene Roddenberry, the man who gave us Star Trek. He may not be with us anymore, but we certainly remember him.

Today On TV
Christian (4:07 pm CST)
-At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the TOS episode 'The Paradise Syndrome.'

-According to Dave Arquati's report in ODN, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Behind the Lines' tomorrow at 17:00 and 23:30 BST.

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Der Plan des Dominion' at 01:15 CET tomorrow morning. At 15:00, they'll be showing the first third-season episode 'Die Suche, Teil 1' (The Search, Part One).

Trek BBS Today
Christian (4:05 pm CST)
As usual, some interesting discussions are going on at the Trek BBS at the moment, including the below three:

-Should people stop criticising Seven of Nine? Has she really been over-used?

-Have you ever seen a UFO?

-Today's the birthday of Trek BBS regular The Logicissary! Join the celebrations!

Find more threads at the Trek BBS!

Hello World!
Christian (4:05 pm CST)
Are there any players of Last Unicorn's Star Trek Roleplaying Game out there? If you actually know something about the game, want to help me out, and want to achieve eternal fame (or at least a bit of it :-), please contact me as soon as possible at christian@trektoday.com - I'm in rather urgent need someone who has actually played the game and knows a bit about it. Thanks in advance!

Wednesday August 18, 1999
11 Armada Screenshots
Christian (4:37 pm CST)
CRUS.com's Johan Bengtsson send along word that, besides their collection of 'Insurrection: Hidden Evil' screenshots, they've also put up 11 screenshots of Activision's real-time strategy game 'Star Trek: Armada.' You can find the screenshots by going here.

Tim Russ Interview
Christian (4:35 pm CST)
The new edition of Visual Imagination's TV Zone includes an interview with Tim Russ, better known as Tuvok on 'Star Trek: Voyager.' As usual, TV Zone has put up a short preview of the full interview, in which he talks about the effects of Seven of Nine joining the crew:

"The network generated a tremendous amount of promotion surrounding Seven's coming onto the show," explains Russ. "Subsequently, the writers were pressured to write stories favouring the character so that Seven was prominent in several episodes during the past two seasons.

"If there was any increase in viewership because of all this publicity then obviously that's positive for us. However, in their efforts to promote Seven they kind of forgot about the rest of the characters, including the captain. What they ended up doing a lot of times was pairing Janeway with Seven to make sure she was involved in the story. So for a while the ensemble element of the series suffered."

In the full preview, Russ tells us a bit more about the problems associated with Seven of Nine, while he also talks about the difficulties of working on a long-running television series. Thanks go out to Gustavo Leao for pointing me to this!

TOS Roleplaying Game Info
Christian (4:30 pm CST)
Star Trek TNG Role-Playing Game designer Kenneth Hite just put up a new edition of his 'Out of the Box' column for Mania Magazine , in which he talks about the latest developments in the RPG world. As his own Original Series RPG has just been published, he of course also gives us a few paragraphs of info on that:

Well, those of you who have become plug-averse can stop here, because it's time to croon over the original series Star Trek Roleplaying Game (286 full color page hardback, $35) from Last Unicorn Games, by Jim Cambias, Steve Long, Jackie Cassada and Nicky Rea, John Snead, S. John Ross, and the immortal Robin Laws -- along with the old STTNGRPG design team of Ross Isaacs, Christian Moore, Steve again -- and me. I developed it, it's mine. And, although I had what I'm told is the standard "developer's rash" of tiny things I should have caught at the last minute, it's pretty much a beautiful, beautiful book -- it looks like Paramount Pictures hired Matt Jeffries to design an RPG book in 1968 -- and a more than serviceable game.

More info on the game (which is actually completely new, not just a sourcebook for the TNG game), can be found in the full column.

'Trek Monthly' DeBoer Interview
Christian (4:25 pm CST)
NikkiDeBoer.com has put up an interview with Nicole deBoer (Ezri Dax) which first appeared in September issue of the British 'Star Trek Monthly' magazine. In it, she talks about the difficulties which originally faced her when she had to replace Terry Farrell:

"I've had to replace someone before and I've had to come on shows that were already underway before," she reveals, "but never shows that have been around for six years or that are as big as Star Trek. It was a little bit daunting. I was nervous because I really wanted to do a good job and I hoped that the fans would like me because Jadzia had been a very well-loved character. It was kind of hard, but you don't think about that once you're on set with the director and your fellow actors actually working on scenes. Then it just becomes about the work. Everybody on the show was great and there are so many good actors there that made the jump a lot easier."

In the rest of the interview, she talks about some of her other 'genre' work (including the Sci-Fi Channel series 'Deepwater Black' and the indie film 'Cube), and the over-use of Ezri in DS9's 7th season. Find it all here!

Blaze Of Glory Released
Christian (4:16 pm CST)
Today is the release date of 'Blaze of Glory,' the new expansion set to Decipher's Star Trek Customizable Card Game. Naturally, lots of things are happening at their web site today related to this:

Blaze of Glory is unleashed upon a world hungry for battle tomorrow, August 18. The pre-release tournaments of the past two weekends have whet players appetites for the cards as first impressions have been broadcast via email and message boards. Here's what we're bringing you on the Decipher Web site to celebrate the expansion.

Star Trek CCG Message Boards are the place to be all day. Open your packs online - go ahead, you can announce it in all caps if you get a foil in your first expansion pack. Second, we'll post a report from the Blaze of Glory pre-release at San Diego with specific strategy analysis. Third, we'll post an awesome Capturing article by Kathy McCracken.

You can find all these articles via Decipher's What's New page, together with several other interesting features, including the deck designs from the winners of the recent San Diego Comics Convention.

Famke Janssen Joins 'X-Men'
Christian (4:16 pm CST)
The official Star Trek Continuum is reporting that Famke Janssen has joined the cast of the X-Men movie. Previously Janssen (who, by the way, is actually Dutch) appeared opposite Patrick Stewart in the TNG episode 'The Perfect Mate' as 'Kamala.' While filming 'The X-Men,' she'll probably meet Stewart again, as he has been cast as 'Professor X.' At the moment it is not yet known who Janssen will play in the film, according to the Continuum report.

Ryan In TV Guide Sexy Women Poll
Christian (4:15 pm CST)
TV Guide has put up a new 'You Sexy Thing!' poll, which, politically correct as ever, allows you to choose the sexiest women on television. This time, the two actresses you can vote for are Peta Wilson (from 'Nikita') and Jeri Ryan, who is of course known by all of us for her role as Seven of Nine on Voyager. After about 4500 votes, Ryan is currently leading with 58% of the votes. If you want to vote, you can do that here, where the TV Guide people have also put up 4 photos of each actress to make your decision a bit easier to make.

Starfleet Command Bug List
Christian (4:15 pm CST)
Interplay's Chris Taylor has posted a list of currently known bugs in their new real-time strategy game, 'Starfleet Command.' The list includes a legend, so you can see what the status is of your most hated bug, and if Interplay considers fixing it a priority or not. You can find the full list by going here.

In related news, Next-Generation Online has put up a mini-interview with Interplay's Erik Bethke and Marc Hertogh, talking about the game's mass appeal, accessibility and graphics engine. You can find that by clicking this link. Thanks go out to the Starfleet Universe for both links.

NASA Instrument Collects Antimatter
Christian (4:15 pm CST)
According to a new press release from NASA, the space agency recently launched a 60-story-high balloon to the upper fringes of Earth's atmosphere to try to collect antimatter particles, and to perhaps find evidence that entire anti-galaxies also exist:

It wasn't science fiction, but cutting-edge science. Carrying a Japanese-built instrument, NASA's largest balloon -- 39 million cubic feet in volume -- lifted off from Lynn Lake, Manitoba, Canada, at 9:22 a.m. EDT Aug. 11 for a 38-hour flight more than 20 miles above Earth. The 5,000-pound instrument was recovered Aug. 12 and will be prepared for another flight next year. The BESS project (Balloon-borne Experiment with a Superconducting Solenoidal magnet), led by Prof. Shuji Orito of the University of Tokyo, is sponsored in the U.S. by NASA and by Monbusho in Japan.

Antiparticles are rare forms of matter that have electrical charges exactly the opposite of their ordinary "sister" particles. For example, a proton has a positive charge and an electron has a negative charge. An antiproton, though, has a negative charge and an antielectron has a positive charge. Scientists study antimatter to understand structure and energy processes in the Universe.

Besides this, antimatter can also be found in the engine rooms of all Starfleet vessels, as the ships are powered by combining matter and antimatter, releasing enourmous amounts of energy. Obviously, this is nowhere near reality, but it certainly is interesting to see these possible first steps towards it. According to NASA, they were able to collect several hundred anti-protons, which should give their scientists some extra study material. A complete report on their mission, plus some extra info on why this search for antimatter is so important for physicists, can be found in the full press release.

Frakes Stars In 'The Lot'
Christian (4:14 pm CST)
A new article by David L. Beck of Knight Ridder Newspapers talks about a new mini-series which will premiere on the 'American Movie Classics' channel today, called 'The Lot.' One of the stars is of the series is apparently Jonathan Frakes, best-known for his role as Commander Riker on the Next Generation. Take a look at what the role of Frakes is in the series:

The former No. 2 Guy on "Star Trek — The Next Generation" has traded in his space jammies for a white suit and a black mustache on AMC's "The Lot," a satiric melodrama about Hollywood circa 1937. Or maybe it's a melodramatic satire; AMC's intentions are a little hard to divine.

Frakes plays Roland White, a rich sleazeball aircraft-maker who is dabbling in movies and in starlets but who is not, for purposes of this series, named Howard Hughes. It's a key role, because White is always hovering around the fringes until he swoops in and scoops up all of the toys, but it's hard to know if he's supposed to be sinister or clownish. Frakes is not a good enough actor to suggest both at once.

Unfortunately I couldn't find the original article on any official newspaper site, but fortunately 'Shawnster' re-posted a copy of the article to the Coffee Nebula discussion board. Parts one and two of 'The Lot' will be shown tomorrow at 8:00pm Eastern Time on AMC, while the final two parts will be shown at the same time on Friday.

'Extreme Risk' Final Rating
Christian (4:14 pm CST)
The Universe has posted the final rating for 'Extreme Risk,' last week's Voyager episode. For the second week in a row, Voyager came out as UPN's highest-rated show:

The final rating for Extreme Risk is in, and Voyager did pretty good, Voyager got a 2.2 and was nr. 97 along with WBs "7th Heaven", "Sister, Sister" and "The Wayans Brothers".

Voyager was UPN's highest rated show, other UPN shows are "Moesha" with a 2.1, a second "Moesha" with a 2.0, "7 Days", "Between Brothers" and "The Sentinel" with a 1.8 and a second The Sentinel and a third Moesha with a 1.7.

The original report can be found here.

Today On TV
Christian (4:13 pm CST)
-At 9:00pm, UPN will be repeating Voyager's 'In The Flesh.' Take a look at how the official Continuum describes the episode:

'In The Flesh' - Courtesy & Copyright Paramount Pictures The U.S.S. Voyager discovers that Species 8472 has created a habitat simulation of Starfleet's San Francisco Yards, and are training their own to pose as humans to eventually invade Earth.

Thanks go out to the Continuum for both the description and the image, which is of course copyrighted by Paramount Pictures.

-At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing one of the few very good third-season TOS episodes, namely 'The Enterprise Incident.'

-According to Dave Arquati's report in ODN, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Sons and Daughters' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. At 18:00 tomorrow, BBC Two will be showing DS9's 'Rivals,' followed 45 minutes later by 'The Alternate.'

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Tribunal' at 01:40 CET tomorrow morning. At 15:00, they'll be showing the second-season finale 'Der Plan des Dominion' (The Jem'Haddar)

Trek BBS Today
Christian (4:13 pm CST)
As seems usual now that it's rerun season, most of the active Trek BBS threads can be found in the Miscellaneous forum, but there are still a few on-topic discussions going on:

-What are the all-time worst episodes of all four series?

-Who exactly was Solbor, Kai Winn's assistant?

Find more threads at the Trek BBS!

Hello World!
Christian (4:13 pm CST)
You may be wondering where this week's "The Franchise's Future" article is - unfortunately, I'm wondering the same thing myself. Hopefully I should get this week's installment very soon indeed, after which it'll immediately go up.

Link of the Day: Take a look at the far-left top side of this week's edition of The Onion, the satirical fake news site, for a small Trek reference. Thanks go out to Anarchos at the TrekWeb Message Board for this.

Tuesday August 17, 1999
A Take On Trek: Wholesome Trek
Christian (4:21 pm CST)
Over at the Trek Nation, Fred Shedian has put up a new edition of his weekly A Take On Trek column. This weeks, he looks at the ever more visible 'dark side of Trek:'

Recently, brief technical data has been released for the often seen Akira Class. For those who are not aware, this ship looks like a Galaxy Class vessel tossed into a trash compactor. Information about this vessel is routine, detailing crew size and the maximum available speed. However, I was stunned to learn this vessel has more weapons than any other ship before it, including the Defiant Class. Total, this vessel has over fifteen photon torpedo launchers. Why would an organization who is proud of the fact they are a peace oriented group create such a weapon? Is this an image of the dark side of the Star Trek force?

Rick Berman was quoted saying, "Our goal with Deep Space Nine is to help portray the dark side of this universe. We want to bring it down to earth." Looking at the legacy the show left behind, I have to say they were successful in their goal. Furthermore, as I have mentioned in previous weeks, they proceeded to turn Starfleet and the United Federation of Planets into a corrupt organization. The introduction of Section 31, the military takeover of Earth, and the creation of such destructive ships as the Akira were successful in removing the innocence we had seen in the Original Series, Next Generation, and even to a point on Voyager.

In the rest of his column, Fred further examines this dark side, and wonders if the Dominion War had more far-lasting effects than any of us would like to think. You can read about that and more in the full column!

Starfleet Command Patch Status
Christian (3:58 pm CST)
The Starfleet Universe has two reports up about the current status of Interplay's new 'Starfleet Command' real-time strategy game. The first one deals with the first 'official' patch, which is rapidly nearing completion:

More information I received from Chris Taylor moments ago :) The final "non-beta" version of the patch is approaching release! Depending on internal testing, we could see the final version by the end of this week. Chris mentioned that a lot of fixes will be included, and that he'll be posting a list of bugs that the team are aware of and working on, soon!

The second report deals with the UK version of the game, which will apparently have the beta patch fixes built in already! The UK and European version is handled by Virgin Interactive, but no final release date has been set yet. More info on the game's patch status, plus almost anything else SFC-related, can be found at the Starfleet Universe!

AICN Roddenbery Series Report
Christian (3:58 pm CST)
Glen Oliver has put up a new report dealing with the upcoming Tribune Entertainment series 'based on' Gene Roddenberry concepts. The first report deals with Robert Hewitt Wolfe's 'Phoenix Rising' series, and the report tells us about the original concept for the show - Wolfe originally pitched it as a show set in the Star Trek universe:

FLASH BACK: Remember Roddenberry's two series pilots from the '70s (Genesis II and Planet Earth)? Both featured a man called Dylan Hunt being frozen in (more or less) modern day, then revived on an Earth that has fallen to great savagery and barbarism. The point of the proposed series would have been for Hunt and his sidekicks to work towards reuniting and re-unifying mankind. Remember this.

PRESENT DAY: Robert Hewitt Wolfe conceives of his "perfect" Star Trek series: a series set thousands of years in Star Trek's future. The galaxy is in turmoil, all of the governments to which Trek fans are accustomed have crumbled and imploded. The galaxy is a really screwed up place: Vulcans have renounced their logic and are now savage enemies of anyone who crosses them. Homeless Klingons roam space in violent packs of attack ships. The Federation is long gone - but it is an ideal not forgotten to those living in this untamed reality.

AICN then goes on to provide some more info on what could have been, had the series actually been accepted as the new Trek series, and provides us with some extrapolations on what 'Phoenix Rising' might be. After that, the site reports on 'Starship,' a CGI show dealing with a team of 'galactic troubleshooters.' Lastly, the report deals with 'Andromeda,' which is apparently a concept which was also toyed with. The full report about this can be found here. When you read it, do remember that Robert Hewitt Wolfe recently already confirmed that 'Phoenix Rising' is actually in production, and that this will be the series featuring Kevin Sorbo (from Hercules).

The Best And Worst Of DS9
Christian (3:57 pm CST)
The new edition of the Sci-Fi Channel's Sci-Fi Entertainment Magazine (October 1999) contains a special feature on the ten best and worst episodes of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, as voted by Trek's fans on the internet. Sci-Fi Entertainment got these results from Joe Reiss's Spoiler-Free Opinion Summary, which SFE believe is the best way to find the fans' opinion:

As with any science fiction show, the fans of Deep Space Nine are never shy about letting their opinions be heard. In particular, fans on the Internet have had a lot of venues with which to register their pleasure and displeasure with the series. Probably the most visible fan was Tim Lynch, whose reviews of Star Trek became the standard against which all other reviews were measured. But everywhere online, one could find discussions of the show, with fans weighing in on which episodes were the best and which were the worst. And, for finding a list of the most favorite and least favorite episodes, there was one poll that stood out.

The "Spoiler-Free Opinion" Summary, or SOS, is run by Joe Reiss at http://www.joereiss.net/sos/sos.cgi, and it covers all of the Star Trek series. Reiss started the survey in the fall of 1992 via postings to the Star Trek newsgroups on the Internet, and he later developed it into a Web page. The SOS is probably the most comprehensive survey of the fans. About 3,000 different people have rated episodes on the SOS Web page from all the Star Trek series. Over the run of DS9, an average of over 400 fans per episode have registered their ratings.

In the full article, SFE provides a list of the ten best DS9 episodes the ten worst, plus some comments on each episode. You can find the article by going here.

'Dark Frontier' German Video Promotion
Christian (3:57 pm CST)
Our German partner site TrekZone.De is reporting that CIC Video will be launching a large promotion campaign for the German home video of Voyager's 'Dark Frontier' (or 'Das ungewisse Dunkel,' as it's called in Germany). The campaign will cost approximately DM 300.000 ($150,000), to be spent on magazine ads and television spots.

Brent Spiner Chat Postponed
Christian (3:56 pm CST)
The official Star Trek Continuum is reporting that their live chat with Brent Spiner (Data), which was originally scheduled for this Thursday, has now been postponed to Thursday the 2nd of September. The chat with costume designer Bob Blackman will still go through on the 26th of August, as originally planned. Advance questions can already be posted here for both chats.

Where Are They Now?
Christian (3:56 pm CST)
At IGN Sci-Fi, a new edition of their 'Ask the BEM' column has gone up, providing answers to readers' questions. This week, one of the questions deals with the Deep Space Nine stars, and what they will be doing now that DS9 is over. IGN Sci-Fi's answer doesn't really provide any new info, but it does sum up nicely what all the actors will be doing now:

Several of DS9's regulars, including Brooks and Rene Auberjonois are planning on returning to the distant planetary system from which they came -- the theater. A few (Nicole DeBoer, Alexander Siddig, Colm Meaney, Michael Dorn) have movie projects in the pipeline. On the TV front, Cirroc Lofton can be seen on a new Showtime TV program called The Hoop Life, about a fictitious basketball team called the LA Legends.

Auberjonois will be featured in a Disney musical TV movie Gepetto (with fellow Trek lifeform Brent Spiner), Terry Farrell stars opposite Ted Danson in the CBS sitcom Becker, and Armin Shimerman was last seen getting munched by a giant serpent in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Nana Visitor has not yet announced her next project. The cast of DS9 are a close-knit bunch -- two of them (Visitor and Siddig) are even married to each other. So, yes, I would think they keep in touch.

More sci-fi-related questions can be found in the full column.

'Star Trek: Hidden Evil' Shots
Christian (3:56 pm CST)
CRUS has posted a short preview of Activision's 'Hidden Evil,' the game based on 'Star Trek: Insurrection.' The preview itself doesn't really give any new info, but what makes it interesting is the fact that it includes 14 screenshots of the game, most of them new. You can find them by going here.

Dutch Publisher Buys Nielsen
Christian (3:56 pm CST)
Okay, this is only borderline Trek-related, but, as Dutch company is involved, I thought I'd mention it anyway :-). Nielsen Media Research has been bought by Dutch publisher VNU, for about $2.7 billion. Nielsen Media Research is the company which every week provides the world with the ratings for 'Star Trek: Voyager' (along with hundreds of other television shows). More info on the deal can be found here.

Today On TV
Christian (3:55 pm CST)
-At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, you really should be watching the Sci-Fi Channel, as they'll be showing fan favourite "Spock's Brain."

-Tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Rocks and Shoals,' according to Dave Arquati's report in ODN.

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Die Wahl des Kai' (The Collaborator) at 01:35 CET tomorrow morning. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Tribunal.'

Trek BBS Today
Christian (3:55 pm CST)
A few interesting topics which are being discussed at the Trek BBS right now:

-What are your suggestions for a Star Trek bumper sticker?

-Is Starfleet Command really the hardest Trek game ever released?

-Will TNG be coming to DVD?

More topics can be found at the Trek BBS, where we'd more than welcome your participation!

Hello World!
Christian (3:54 pm CST)
I'm absolutely amazed at the results of the current TrekToday poll - apparently, over 70% of you visit the site each and every day! Thanks for your loyalty - it's quite an honour to know my little corner of the web is worthy of daily visits!

When do you actually visit TrekToday? In the morning, before starting work? During your lunch break? In the evening, after getting back home? Please do let me know at feedback@treknation.com - I'd love to print a compilation of your visit times in the mailbag :-)!

Monday August 16, 1999
TOS DVD Review
Christian (4:19 pm CST)
Tomorrow the first two Original Series DVDs will arrive in stores, but the DVD Resource has already put up a review of the discs. In his comprehensive review, Steve Tannehill says he rather likes the DVDs, even though they are a bit expensive:

Paramount is clearly packaging these discs with maximum profits in mind. Although a dual-layered (DVD-9) disc could easily hold three episodes and probably four, we are only getting two episodes on a single-layered (DVD-5) disc. The cost is US$20 a disc (retail, with pre-order discounts taking the price down to the $12 range). I am not as much concerned about the price-per-episode ratio. I'll pay $6 a show. My biggest concern is shelf space. Wouldn't it be great to get a double-sided, dual-layered (DVD-18) disc with six or eight episodes per disc? Instead of taking up the shelf space for forty discs, it could be ten. And yes, I am sure these "super" discs would cost the same as separate two-episode discs. But frankly, part of the cost of the DVD is also in the two feet of shelf space required to store it. To take a favorite line from a classic movie, we're going to need a bigger boat.

The first two discs in the Star Trek franchise street on Tuesday, August 17. The next four discs are coming to DVD in the Fall of 1999. The remaining discs are said to be coming in the new millennium. I'll take that to mean the year 2000 (does no one understand what "millennium" means?) I like Star Trek and I am glad to see the original series make it to DVD after I ignored the opportunity to buy the series on tape or laserdisc. I just wish that there had been an optional mono mix, a few more extras, and a few less discs in the set.

The first disc in the set contains "Where No Man Has Gone Before" and "The Corbomite Maneuver," while the second set contains "Mudd's Women" and "The Enemy Within." More on the quality of the DVDs can be found in Tannehill's full review.

Stewart To Host Amnesty USA Awards
Christian (4:19 pm CST)
Patrick Stewart - The Actors' Actor is reporting that Patrick Stewart (Jean-Luc Picard) will be hosting the 3rd Annual Amnesty USA Spotlight Awards, after being honoured himself in 1997. The awards are given "to those people whose work in the media helps promote the cause of human rights." Details on how to get tickets for the event can be found on the Actors' Actor's news page.

Trek Minds #10 Available
Christian (4:19 pm CST)
Over at the German Radio Trek, the tenth Trek Minds online radio show has just been made available. This edition includes a look at role-playing games, Trek book reviews, and a special look at how Trek Minds is created. You can download the full show (in German) by going here.

New Mara's Corner
Christian (4:18 pm CST)
This news item is actually already a week old, but unfortunately I didn't notice it before now. The Raving Toy Maniac has put up a new edition of Mara's Corner, the monthly column where a Playmates employee answers fan question about their Trek action figures. Take a look at two of the most interesting questions:

Q: Why has Playmates always produced Next Generation 5-inch figures that are supposed to have BLUE uniforms as GREEN instead? For example: Tapestry II Picard and Deanna Troi in Duty Uniform.

A: Pantone color specs are called out and approved by Viacom consumer products. When given, these are the guidelines for product. Looking at real wardrobe, or photos or filmed episodes (under various lights) really gets confusing as to what a "real" color is. Many times they are vastly different than what you would "perceive" as the "right" color. It's a subjective interpretation, and the final decision belongs to the licensor.

Q: Will there be Star Trek toys from Playmates in 2000?

A: Very likely, but exactly what kind, how or where - is still being discussed between Viacom and Playmates.

More can be found in the full update.

Two CCG Tournament Winners
Christian (4:18 pm CST)
Now that this ComiCon, held this weekend in San Diego is over, Decipher has posted two new Star Trek Customizable Card Game tournament reports. The first report deals with the Invitation Tournament, which was apparently one of the most challenging tournaments held over the past few months:

San Diego Comic Con's Star Trek CCG Invitational was the smallest championship qualifying event run so far, but it was arguably the most challenging. The field of 18 players who gathered on Friday, August 13 included seven who had competed in past Trek World Championships.

Two games into the tournament, just how difficult the remaining games would be was realized when not one player had succeeded in scoring full 2-point wins in their games. Halfway through the event, several players were heard to say, "this is harder than the Worlds!"

In the end, this tournament was won by Chris De Jong, who already took part in the World Finals in 1998, as you can read in the full Invitational Tournament Report. The second report deals with the team tournament held at the convention, which was won by the Borg team, on which De Jong also had a seat. You can find the report of the team tournament here.

Visit The X-Men Set
Christian (4:18 pm CST)
UGO, the wonderful group of people who also help keep this site alive by providing the banners at the top of this page, just launched a rather great iniative - the X-Men Movie Sweepstakes! Take a look at what they allow you to win:

Thousands will read about it, millions will see it, but only one will experience it... enter here to be a part of the X-Men Evoluxion! 20 first prize winners and 10 second prize winners will receive exclusive X-MEN merchandise packages from Fox, Marvel and UGO!

One of the stars of the movie is Patrick Stewart (Jean-Luc Picard), who will be appearing as Professor X. You can participate in the sweepstakes by going here.

Poll Results
Christian (4:14 pm CST)
In this semi-regular column, I'll be posting the results of TrekToday polls once they are replaced by a new poll. Many people asked for a way to see the final results, so here you'll finally have the opportunity. As always, you can participate in the actual poll by voting at the top right-hand side of the screen. Take a look at the results of last week's poll:


Do you think a Starfleet Academy series will actually happen?
No 71.7% - (239 Votes)
Yes 28.2% - (94 Votes)

Total Votes: 333

Thanks for voting, and do please participate in our new poll, asking how often you visit TrekToday!

Today On TV
Christian (4:13 pm CST)
-At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the TOS episode and attempted new series pilot "Assignment: Earth.'

-According to Dave Arquati's ODN report, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'A Time To Stand' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST.

-In German, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Die andere Seite' (Crossover) tomorrow morning at 00:05 CET. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Die Wahl des Kai' (The Collaborator).

Trek BBS Today
Christian (4:13 pm CST)
Here's today's selection of active threads at the Trek BBS:

-Is there a new, dangerous breed of Trek fan?

-Which member of the Trek BBS would you most like to mee in real life?

More topics can be found at the Trek BBS!

Hello World!
Christian (4:13 pm CST)
Excuse any spelling mistakes in today's update... I'm afraid I'm nearly falling asleep over my keyboard at the moment. Perhaps I should consider setting my alarm clock at 5:00 in the morning and do the updates in the morning instead of in the evening - at least then there aren't any good films shown on television which invariably distract me and delay the day's update...

Sunday August 15, 1999
GamePower Starfleet Command Review
Christian (3:18 pm CST)
GamePower has put up a rather favourable review of Interplay's new Starfleet Command game, awarding it 3.5 out of 4 lightning bolts. According to the reviewer, this might well be considered the best Trek game ever:

Based loosely on the incredibly deep cult-favorite Starfleet Battles tabletop game, Starfleet Command models ship-to-ship combat Star Trek-style. The ships are huge, slow moving, and powerful; combat is a delicate and complicated mix of energy management, tactics, and real-time strategy. And everything comes together seamlessly to provide not only the best Star Trek game ever, but probably the best naval simulation I've ever played.

Starfleet Battles fans will be pleased to see many of their favorite rules and tactics implemented so well. High-energy turns, missiles, and other popular tricks are balanced well here. Sure, it isn't a direct translation, but the development teams are obviously fans of the work.

You can find the full review by following this link. Thanks go out, as usual when there is Starfleet Command news to report, to the Starfleet Universe for this.

Lynch's DS9 Season 7 Review
Christian (3:18 pm CST)
Psi Phi has put up the DS9 season 7 recap of Tim Lynch, perhaps Trek's best-known online reviewer. Take a look at what you can expect from this final season review:

This article has spoilers for the seventh and final season (and possibly seasons before) of "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine". Proceed at your own risk. Hi there. One last time... here we are. This review's been more of an effort than usual to write--I'm not sure whether it's because it's the last one, or whether that means it's a good thing this is the last one. (Possibly a bit of both.)

Anyway, if you've been reading my stuff for a year or two (or ten), by now you know the drill. First, there's an episode-by-episode recap, where I see what's changed from the first impressions to watching everything at season's end over the course of a little over a week, then there's general commentary on trends, successes, and failures of the entire season. Onwards!

You can find the full review by clicking here - be warned, though, the review is very long, about 100kb in size.

John Ordover Answers Again
Christian (3:17 pm CST)
It's Sunday, so there's a new batch of answers from Pocket Books editor John Ordover. Take a look at two of the most interesting questions he answered:

Query from: David
I was a little let down when i looked at aventures in time and space tonight. I was hoping it was a guide book to the novels. like episode guide. a compendium if you will. anyways i think that would a dream come to to trek book fans. have you ever considered that?

Response from: John Ordover
The timeline in AITS is about as close as we're going to get to that kind of thing.

Query from: Dave Price
You didn't answer Michael Bright's question. Why does Shatner get away with writing novels that are so far off of the established Star Trek Universe? There's no question that they are event novels and as such will sell well, but Bright's points were all very valid. If I sent in the novel "Dark Victory" today, without having Shatner already having written it, it would be rejecte

Response from: John Ordover
Do you really have to ask why -William Shatner- gets to do things in Star Trek that others don't get to do? :)

Find more answers at the actual Q&A Board.

Robert Duncan McNeill FedCon Video
Christian (3:12 pm CST)
The Star Trek Universe has put up a special musical video clip which was taped at the recent German Fed Con 7 convention:

I have gotten a videoclip from Fed Con 7, it's of Robert Duncan McNeill singing "Its a Story ...". It's a special videoclip you can get nowhere else. By the way when you have seen the clip, then you will know why Robbie became an actor and not a singer :-)

The video, which is in ASF format and runs for approximately one minute, can be downloaded as a 4.48 MB file via this page.

Happy Birthday!
Christian (3:11 pm CST)
Unfortunately I didn't find out about this until today, but yesterday was actually the birthday of Brannon Braga, Voyager's Executive Producer and co-writer of episodes such as 'All Good Things' and the TNG feature films 'Generations' and 'First Contact.' Currently he's rumoured to be co-creating Series V together with Rick Berman. Thanks go out to Jason at the Coffee Nebula for posting the message which alerted me to this.

Today On TV
Christian (3:09 pm CST)
-Tomorrow in the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Call To Arms' at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. At 20:00, they'll be showing Voyager's 'Course: Oblivion.' Thanks go out to Dave Arquati for his ODN report about this.

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be showing DS9's 'Die andere Seite' (Crossover) at 15:00 CET tomorrow.

Trek BBS Today
Christian (3:07 pm CST)
As usual on a Sunday, there are a lot less discussions than usual, and over half of those are taking place in the 'Miscellaneous' forum. Still, there are a few interesting on-topic discussions:

-Where are the ordinary Trek women? Do they even exist?

-Meet the Flat Earth Society. (Okay, that's not on-topic, but it is rather funny).

More topics can be found at the actual Trek BBS, where you're of course more than welcome to add new topics yourself!

Hello World!
Christian (3:06 pm CST)
Unfortunately, it appears my e-mail problem still hasn't been fully fixed - this morning, it was down again for at least four hours. If this isn't fixed very soon, I'll be looking for a new web host, but, in the meantime, please try to resend your mails a few hours later if they were bounced back to you. Alternatively, if that doesn't work either, please send your mail to trektoday@hotmail.com, which is a temporary address I set up for this purpose.

Saturday August 14, 1999
Wish Robert Picardo A Happy Birthday
Christian (3:26 pm CST)
Cristy Ruteshouser, president of the Robert Picardo Fan Club sends along word they'll soon be organising a 'birthday greeting' action again for Robert Picardo, who stars as the Holodoc on Voyager:

Would you like to wish Robert Picardo a very special "Happy Birthday" this year? His birthday is October 27. Every year the members of CARPE, the "Central Alliance of Robert Picardo Enthusiasts," and other fans of Bob Picardo commemorate his birthday with cards and notes. Last year he told us "I love getting that [birthday card] packet every year!"

In addition to the call for birthday cards, each year CARPE hosts a fund drive for the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation in honor of Bob's birthday. This is a wonderful charity, doing great work raising money for pediatric AIDS research. For more information on the Foundation, go to their web site at http://www.pedaids.org.

If you want to participate, you should send birthday cards (preferably in unsealed envelopes, placed inside a second mailing envelope) AND/OR donation checks, made out to the Pediatric AIDS Foundation, to CARPE's mailing address, which can be found on their web site.

[Update, Sunday, 9:53 CET:] CARPE's President just sent out another mail, saying that you should only use the e-mail address to send in electronic greeting cards of the type offered by many Internet card companies, not to send in simple e-mail. If you wish to just say "Happy Birthday," and don't want to send a card or e-card, the fan club will open a special guestbook for this purpose in October, a few weeks before Robert Picardo's actual birthday.

Final 'Insurrection' Box Office News
Christian (3:25 pm CST)
Greg Fuller at the Star Trek Nielsen Ratings Information Database, located right here at the Nation, has put up what might well be the final box office report for 'Star Trek: Insurrection.' Take a look at the final summary of the movie's performance:

Although the movie has yet to make some money in video rentals, that amount is now pretty negligable in the grand scheme of movie money. In the end, "Insurrection" finished 8th among the Trek films domestically, 3rd in overseas reciepts, and 5th overall. Insurrection will go down as the median Trek film -- falling right in the middle. As far as video and DVD goes, those numbers will always be in flux. As Insurrection left the top ten, it had earned 9.69 million dollars, but has easily surpassed 10 million by now. That will be the number I'll keep for reference. DVD rentals and sales figures are not posted in any public forum that I've been able to find, so we'll have to do without. The video should be out for sale now or will be soon, and that data is sometimes available, so I'll post as it comes in.

The full report can be found here.

Shatner Fly Fishing News
Christian (3:25 pm CST)
The official William Shatner Connection is reporting that William Shatner (James T. Kirk) was supposed to have gone fly fishing for a week on the John Day River in Oregon today for the ESPN show 'Fly Fishing the World.' Presumably Shatner won't be going (rather understandably, considering his wife just passed away), but I thought I'd report it anyway.

'Voyager: Elite Force' Mini-Q&A
Christian (3:23 pm CST)
Following yesterday's .plan update by Chris Foster, lead designer on Raven's 'Voyager: Elite Force' game, I asked him two short questions about the game which he was kind enough to answer:

TrekToday: All the Borg vessel screenshots we've seen so far showed the player walking around in huge open areas. On the show, the away teams were usually walking arround in very narrow hallways, with tubes and tentacles hanging everywhere. Are you also planning to feature this sort of environment?

Chris Foster: We have reasons for them being more open at that point. They are story oriented reasons that I can't reveal right now, but in adition - we have to make allowances for gameplay. For the game to be playable and very fun in all areas, we are forced to widen certain areas. Rest assured, though that we do have many areas on the Borg levels that are cramped, as in the shows: including hanging tubes...

TrekToday: I was reading the German PC Action article about the game, which mentioned that the in-game music would react to what was happening in the game, just like in the actual television series. What sort of music will you actually be using?

Chris Foster: Most of the music will be created in a Trek vein by our in-studio musicians. We will be using sounds from the series as well.

Thanks go out to Chris Foster for answering my questions - he certainly helped save TrekToday from a day with almost no other 'real' news :-).

Vidiot Voyager Cast Biographies
Christian (3:22 pm CST)
Mr. Video Productions has put up the official cast photos for all five seasons of 'Star Trek: Voyager,' showing both group photos and individual photos of all the stars, plus detailed biographies of all the actors and producer Rick Berman. You can find the photos and biographies by going here.

Today On TV
Christian (3:22 pm CST)
-Tomorrow in the UK, Sky One will be showing DS9's 'In The Cards' at 16:00 BST, followed an hour later by Voyager's 'Twisted.' Thanks go out to Dave Arquati and his report in ODN for this.

-In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating Voyager's 'Charakterelemente' at twenty minutes past midnight. At 9:00 CET tomorrow morning, they'll be repeating 'Asteroiden.'

Trek BBS Today
Christian (3:22 pm CST)
Take a look at what is hot and happening at the Trek BBS:

-Is it time for Trek to take a rest?

-How does Starfleet actually get anti-matter for its vessels?

More discussion topics can be found at the Trek BBS!

Hello World!
Christian (3:21 pm CST)
Has anyone else noticed this Continuum news item about the new Starfleet Command game 'going gold before debuting in stores'? It certainly had me rolling over the floor - presumably the reporter mis-interpreted the computer industry term 'going gold' (indicating that a game is finished and will now be transported to stores) for the sales term 'going gold' (indicating that a certain amount of copies has been sold). If this is indeed what happened, the Continuum's report seems akin to excitedly reporting that an episode has finished filming before it was actually broadcast :-).

Friday August 13, 1999
New Mailbag
Christian (3:27 pm CST)
Actually the mailbag has been up for two days now, only I forgot to announce it anywhere on the site :-(. In any case, it should be well worth the wait, as this week's edition of the Trek Nation Mailbag contains lots of interesting mails on everything from WWF wrestlers to Avery Brooks punching other actors to some of our most recent featured articles. All that and more can be found in the new mailbag! Remember, keep on sending your thoughts on all things Trek to feedback@treknation.com so we can actually put them in our mailbag!

'Voyager: Elite Force' Status
Christian (3:24 pm CST)
A few minutes ago, Raven's Chris Foster, Lead Designer for 'Voyager: Elite Force,' updated his .plan with some info on how the game is progressing:

Things on the design end of Elite Force are going well. We're finishing off the tail end of this mission's levels, anxiously awaiting the executable update from our programmers which will allow us to go to town on scripting!!!! [...] Its looking sweeter each day, and we're quickly learning how to bust things when using too many curves in a map!

I hope to have us send out new screenshots to the press really soon here, as I want to replace some of those out there which were taken when we were testing scale. In some of them Tuvok looks about 3' tall! If you've seen them you know what I'm talking about...and don't worry. He's normal size now.

The full update can be found here.

'Nana' and 'Sid' Clubs Merging
Christian (3:17 pm CST)
The Intendant Kira Homepage is reporting that the official fan clubs of Nana Visitor (Kira Nerys) and Alexander Siddig (Julian Bashir) will be merging, as the objects of their attention did the same a few years ago (Siddig and Visitor are married to each other). According to Nana Visitor fan site The Observatory, the name of the new fan club will be 'Far Beyond the Stars.'

Starfleet Command Beta Patch
Christian (3:16 pm CST)
The Starfleet Universe is reporting that the first patch for Interplay's new real-time strategy game has been released. The patch is called the '1.00.01b Beta' patch, and fixes the following bugs:

  • Campaign Save Games - fixed file size problem that caused corrupted saves. Saved games that were previously corrupted cannot be loaded, but un-corrupted savegames are compatible.
  • Mod Detection - multiplayer mod detection doesn't "spam" messages and only reports actual differences. It also now only checks when player clicks READY button.
  • Spacedock Missiles - fixed problem with purchasing large number of missiles for some ships.
  • Lyran Medals - a minor bug with the Lyran medals screen was fixed.
  • Specs File - fixed several minor errors (cloaking cost for Klingon D5Y, shield strength for listening posts and other units).
  • Capturing Listening Posts - no longer causes a crash due to spec file change. Units that had no starting shields would crash when captured.
  • Hotkey Bindings - The bindings.ini file was un-write protected.

  • According to Starfleet Command designer Chris Taylor, this is just a beta patch, and hasn't been fully tested yet. More on this (plus the chance to actually download the patch!) can be found at the Starfleet Universe.

    Decipher ComiCon Preview
    Christian (3:16 pm CST)
    Star Trek Customizable Card Game publisher Decipher has put up a report of the ComiCon convention, which started yesterday in San Diego. As usual, Decipher is also organising several Trek events, including an invitational championship, a team challenge and a pre-release event for the 'Blaze of Glory' expansion pack. The full report can be found here, while a schedule of the Decipher happenings at ComiCon can be found here.

    New 'Birth of the Federation' Review
    Christian (3:16 pm CST)
    The game's been out for about two months now, but a new review of Microprose's turn-based strategy game 'Birth of the Federation' has been published by the Edmonton Journal. The review was written by Steve Bilodeau, who liked the game, but didn't think it was a classic:

    Only a Star Trek fan will think this is a great game, and some of those fans might not think so either. Though there have been valiant efforts at consistency with the show, the computer's intelligence strays from what it should do to keep in character. My Romulan Empire was growing along, doing nothing to provoke my supposedly peace-loving Federation neighbour when suddenly the troop transports start invading my worlds. This is not only inconsistent with the shows, but it is also inconsistent with the description in the manual.

    And that manual is woefully inadequate, given how complex the game is. In order to learn enough about the game to write this review, I had to fork out another $30 for the Strategy Guide. This is unacceptable.

    All in all, Birth of the Federation gets a thumbs-up for being challenging and engaging. Star Trek fans will be rewarded for struggling up the steep learning curve. But The non-Star-Trek fan strategy gamer will find the defects and the skimpy manual too significant to overlook.

    Personally I do believe the game is 'great,' but then I've always been a fan of hard-core strategy games. Bilodeau's full review can be found here.

    Nimoy Calls For More Drama
    Christian (3:15 pm CST)
    A report from AP talks about a recent plea from Leonard Nimoy (Spock) and John deLancie (Q), who called for more drama classes in California's public schools:

    ``You don't need sets, costumes, or lighting, you don't need a lot of money,'' Nimoy, who starred as the pointy-eared Mr. Spock, said Thursday. ``You just need interested students and teachers to make drama work in California's schools.'' State law now requires students to take a year of arts or a foreign language. School districts can have higher requirements, but only about half now require one year each of art and foreign language.

    Nimoy and actor John de Lancie, known as Q on ``Star Trek: The Next Generation,'' suggested schools could bring drama classes back by ``acting out'' school subjects in short plays.

    Nimoy and deLancie have been working together on the Alien Voices production company, which creates dramatizations of classic sci-fi works, for three years now. More on this can be found in the full article.

    Six New 'Armada' Screenshots
    Christian (3:15 pm CST)
    Strategy Gaming Online has posted no less than six new screenshots of the upcoming Activision real-time strategy game 'Armada.' They all look extremely great, showing ships such as the Prometheus-class starship, several Romulan vessels, and even something which looks like a Borg ship. The screenshots can be found here. Thanks go out to Evil Avatar for the link.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:14 pm CST)
    -According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective (which is still down, I'm getting this via ODN, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Empok Nor' at 16:00 BST tomorrow morning. An hour later, they'll be showing Voyager's 'Elogium.'

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Das Implantat' (The Wire) tomorrow morning at 01:05 CET. Tomorrow morning at 15:00 CET, they'll be showing Voyager's 'Charakterelemente,' followed an hour later by 'Asteroiden.'

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:14 pm CST)
    Today's selection of the finest Trek BBS discussions:

    -Does Voyager appeal to the younger generation?

    -In Voyager's sixth season premiere, what do you think will be the fate of the 'Equinox'?

    -If Starfleet has been developing more weapons to face the Borg threat, why have we seen so few new weapons?

    More discussion topics can be found at the Trek BBS, where you're of course more than welcome to participate in the discussions yourself!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:13 pm CST)
    Weekend! Yeehaa!

    Thursday August 12, 1999
    Wolfe Confirms 'Phoenix Rising'
    Christian (4:04 pm CST)
    Former DS9 writer Robert Hewitt Wolfe just confirmed the reports about the new 'Phoenix Rising' series:

    I am working on the project, it's based on material by Gene Roddenberry, Kevin Sorbo is attached, and Tribune is producing.

    Unfortunately Wolfe couldn't give out any plot info, though he did mention that the series will probably be on the air in Fall 2000. Major thanks go out to Robert Wolfe for confirming this to us!

    In related news, 'Dr. No' tells me that one of the main plot points of 'Phoenix Rising' will apparently be that the ship Sorbo is commanding is sentient, which certainly allows for a lot of interesting possibilities. Note that this plot tidbit certainly hasn't been officially confirmed yet - treat it as you would any other rumour.

    Lastly, Cinescape is reporting that Sony has bought Robert Wolfe's sci-fi thriller screenplay 'Zero G.' The film will be produced by Terrence Chang and John Woo, and will be set on an international space station.

    Starfleet Command Reviews
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    The first reviews of Interplay's new real-time strategy game 'Starfleet Command' have started popping up on the net. Computer Games Online have already posted their 'Quick Take,' a prelude to the real review. Their first impressions certainly seem to be positive:

    Starfleet Command may change [the Trek game curse]. A brief examination reveals a game that offers an excellent premise, depth of gameplay, and striking visuals, all in one package. "Brief examination" is perhaps a bit of a misnomer—the sheer scale and complexity of the game makes it difficult to even superficially evaluate the game without spending, say, a week in utter seclusion with a computer and a steady supply of Twizzlers and Jolt. The manual is a slick and well written 164-page spiral-bound monster (written by Senior Designer Chris Taylor, who was also responsible for the excellent Fallout manual), and the game itself boasts a learning curve steep enough to make the manual required reading before you get started.

    The full Quick Take, as written by Benjamin E. Sones, provides a bit more info on the game. More in-depth is the IGN PC review, which was written by Trent C. Ward. Awarding the game an 8.3, he praises the game's longevity:

    In the end, Starfleet Command offers up one of the most innovative looks at the RTS game that I've seen in a really long time. Just about every strategy fan who has the patience to learn all the controls (and you have to read the manual here folks, the tutorials leave quite a bit of important stuff out) will be happy with the purchase of this game. With that said, I did have quite a few stability issues with this title (it kicked me out to Windows about a dozen times before I stopped counting) and it's frighteningly hard to learn if you're not patient. With those caveats in place, I highly recommend this title to everyone.

    IGN's full review, which is almost as huge as the game's manual, can be found here. Thanks go out to the Starfleet Universe for both links.

    Hallmark Announces Trek Stamp Ornament
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    Steve Krutzler at TrekWeb is reporting that Hallmark will be bringing out another Star Trek Christmas ornament, in addition to the ones they already announced:

    In the Hallmark quarterly newsletter they announce that a series of "Stamps Of The Century" Christmas ornaments based on the ongoing postage stamp series will be released. One of these will be the Star Trek stamp. These ornaments are described as featuring "etched metal frames with ceramic stamp designs". As they are pictured in my newsletter, each ornament has a pressed metal frame with the ceramic stamp suspended inside.

    The artwork on the Star Trek stamp (which is the same as will appear on the forthcoming Trek stamp and is a painted image of the original Enterprise by artist Keith Birdsong) is very impressive. Each ornament will list for $9.95 and will join previously announced Trek 1999 ornaments Lt. Commander Worf($14.95), USS Rio Grande runabout(lighted and "talking" $24.00), and USS Enterprise "Crown Reflections"($25.00).

    Info on the other ornaments based on the staps can be found in the full report.

    'Voyager: Elite Force' Status
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    Raven's Mike Gummelt recently updated his .plan with some info on the current status of the 'Voyager: Elite Force' game:

    I am now currently working on re-implementing our NPC's and enemies into the latest build we got from id- the new lighting and shadows are just incredible. It's amazing to see the super high quality models and skins our artists come up with in this new lighting- to see one of our NPC's nose cast a shadow on his face is just, well, cool as hell.

    The shadowing and lighting really helps round out our models a lot. Seven of Nine looked great before (because we have excellent modellers and animators and our skin artists are magicians when it comes to making skin textures that round off the model), but now she has even more depth and her curves and shadows look almost eerily lifelike to me (there are issues with some shadow lines being too sharp, but we have a couple ideas about that). The new externalization of data ideas we're starting to implement seem like they'll work well and save us a lot of hassle.

    More info on the game's artificial intelligence system can be found in the full update.

    New Comics Q&A
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    Yes, I know it's late. Unfortunately the comics Q&A was doubly hampered by my e-mail problems: first when people sent in questions, and then when Jeff sent back his answers. In any case, we've now finally got a new edition of the Comics Q&A, where Wildstorm editor Jeff Mariotte answers your every question about the Star Trek comics. Take a look at two of the most interesting questions:

    Query From: Captain Jim
    This isn't a question, but an answer. Roy Gales wrote to you wanting to obtain a copy of the "Ashes of Eden" comic book adaption. This book is available at Amazon.com.

    Response From: Jeff Mariotte
    As the owner of a specialty science fiction/mystery/horror bookstore, it's against my principles to recommend Amazon for anything. I'm sure, if it's available there, it's also available at various comic book stores around -- but at least, it's available. Happy hunting!

    Query From: Joe Farley
    I( was curious as to your willingness to do adaptations of Trek TV/movie adaptations that, for whatever reasons, never got produced. Specifically, I mean adaptations of:
    * Star Trek 2: The Wrath Of Khan movie
    * Star Trek: Insurrection movie
    * The final TV episode of DS9

    Response From: Jeff Mariotte
    It's been my contention all along that, considering the limited number of issues we're going to be able to squeeze into two years, most fans would get more enjoyment from seeing new stories rather than old stories re-told in a different medium. So we're focusing on that -- creating exciting new Star Trek stories that help expand on the dynamic universe of Star Trek.

    More questions and answers can be found at the Q&A Board, where you'll also be able to ask questions yourself!

    Jerry Goldsmith Interview
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    Barnes and Noble has put up an interview with Jerry Goldsmith, composer of the TNG and Voyager themes and nearly half of all Trek movies. In it, he of course also talks about his Star Trek work:

    It was one of the few times I ever worked with a star who was also a director -- with Jonathan Frakes. It's sort of a strange thing. You're sitting with the person you're working with and you're seeing him on the screen at the same time. The last RAMBO, Stallone was in charge of post-production, and I spotted the picture with him. He was fine. He's a good filmmaker actually.

    STAR TREK is such an international phenomenon now. In a recent concert I gave in Aberdeen, 40 people came in full STAR TREK regalia. In Budapest, the fan club besieged me before the concert. The first movie they wrote off the foreign on it, but now it's growing and growing all over.

    More on his huge career can be found in the full interview. Thanks go out to Adam Bailey for this!

    CCG Deck Designs
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    Decipher has posted three deck designs for their Star Trek Customizable Card Game which have proven successful in the past. Available are the deck designs of the winner of the Benelux CCG Open, the second-place winner at GenCon and the 5th place winner at GenCon.

    On Starfleet Command Availability
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    The Starfleet Universe has posted some news on the availability of Interplay's 'Starfleet Command' game, which should be in the shops by now:

    Just a quick note to update you on how the shipping of pre-orders is going etc.. Some people have received their copies of Starfleet Command however I did get one email yesterday from someone who said that the comapny they pre-ordered from ran out of stock so some pre-orders are on "back order" right now. No details on which company however :\

    I also got news that Interplay has run out of Bonus CD's so if you ordered direct from Interplay don't be surprised to find no Bonus CD, it'll be forwarded to you when they get another shipment in.

    More news of this will undoubtedly be made available at the Starfleet Universe as it gets out. As I said before, if you already received your copy of 'Starfleet Command,' we at the Trek Nation would absolutely love to receive a review of the game!

    Overnight Ratings 'Extreme Risk'
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    Yesterday's rerun of Voyager's Extreme Risk scored a 2.4 rating / 5 share, just like last week. An hour earlier, 'Seven Days' managed to get a 2.5 rating / 4 share. As usual, UPN came in sixth among the big networks. On Monday and Tuesday, UPN shows which got higher ratings than Voyager included 'Moesha' and 'Clueless.' The full Wednesday report can be found here at UltimateTV.

    Happy Birthday!
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    Today is the 87th birthday of Jane Wyatt, who appeared as Spock's mother Amanda in both the Original Series episode 'Journey To Babel' and 'Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home.'

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:58 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the TOS Nazi episode 'Patterns of Force.'

    -Tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Blaze of Glory,' according to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective (or at least, according to the re-print of the Unit's report which appeared in ODN - I've been unable to access the Collective itself for a few days now).

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Der Maquis, Teil 2' (The Maquis, Part Two) at 01:45 CET tomorrow morning. At 15:00 tomorrow, they'll be showing 'Das Implantat' (The Wire).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:58 pm CST)
    As ever, lots of interesting discussions are currently going on at the Trek BBS. Here are some of the most interesting:

    -Is Janeway running out of steam, and should Kate Mulgrew be held responsible for this?

    -If you live in Europe, did you say the solar eclipse?

    Find more topics at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:57 pm CST)
    For some reason, the 'alt-tab' key combination stopped working while I was compiling news for today's update - I've never experienced a more annoying thing. Every time I'd try to switch between my site list, a specific site and my list of news, I'd try to alt-tab, only to notice that it didn't work. I certainly hope this is only a temporary thing - I don't think I could live with a PC without alt-tab...

    Wednesday August 11, 1999
    WWF Wrestler News Confirmed
    Christian (4:32 pm CST)
    Unfortunately, the 'wrestlers on Voyager' rumour does appear to be true. After this week's edition of a WWF newsletter called the Ross Report first mentioned it, it was also mentioned in an online news show at the WWF web site, presented by a guy named Lucas. At the end of the show, he spent about a minute talking about the Voyager news:

    Let's move on to the rumours... we've got a good question Bradley Hastings: "Are the Big Boss Manna and other WWF superstars going to appear on 'Star Trek: Voyager' in the near future?" Well, Bradley, I was talking with the Boss Man last week, we had a couple of days off, and he told me that, you know, he recently got a letter from the producers of the show to appear on it. And he is a huge fan of 'Star Trek: Voyager,' and he told me he's psyched about the project.

    But the cool thing is, Boss Man is also going to help us out with this auction we're doing online. [...] Boss Man told me he is going to sign this letter and let you bid on it. So you can actually own the letter from the Star Trek Voyager producers to the Big Boss Man, you know. Anyway, yes, there is a lot of interest on both sides.

    The original report can still be found by clicking this link, which should open RealPlayer and run the show - the Voyager comments can be heard after approximately two minutes. This does absolutely confirm that the producers are planning to feature wrestlers on the show - I know many people went into understandable denial over this, but this latest report makes the news look even more real. Very major thanks go out to Jose Gonzalez for pointing me to this.

    Final 'Drone' Ratings
    Christian (4:20 pm CST)
    The Universe has posted the final ratings report for 'Drone,' last week's repeat Voyager episode:

    The final rating for Drone is in, and it did a lot better than I first thought. Star Trek: Voyager was nr. 104 and got a 1.9. [...] Other UPN ratings are "Malcolm and Eddie" and "UPN special presents" with a 1.8, "Clueless" and "The Sentinel" with a 1.7, "Moesha" and "7 Days" with a 1.6 and a second "7 Days with a 1.5.

    Find the original report here.

    More GenCon CCG Reports
    Christian (4:19 pm CST)
    Decipher, the official publisher of the Star Trek Customizable Card Game, has put up two more reports dealing with the recent GenCon convention. The first report deals with the GenCon Open Star Trek CCG Tournament, which also served as a qualifying round for the world championships. This event was won by Dan Allman, as you can read in the full report.

    The second report deals with the Team Tournament, where, as the title suggests, teams could take part. This event was won by Roxanne Barbour and Ted Witt - does anyone know if this is the same Ted Witt who used to review DS9 episodes at the Psi Phi Discussion Forums? More on this can be found in the full report?

    John Ordover Answers Again
    Christian (4:19 pm CST)
    Pocket Books editor John Ordorver, safely returned from his honeymoon, has once again put up a batch of answers to questions about the Star Trek novels. Take a look at three of the most interesting ones:

    Query from: eight of nine
    I know there is an intended novelization of Voy season 5-6 cliffhanger/premier. How far in advance do you need to start making a novelization? I heard the filming didn't begin until June. Will you have another book for whatever EVENT comes to the screen on sweeps week? Will there be anything significant in these books that is not on the screen?

    Response from: John Ordover
    We like to think we flesh out the stories in the novelizations at least to the extent of giving the interior thoughts and feelings of the chracters. We work from scripts, not from the filmed episodes. There's nothing planned for sweeps week at this point.

    Query from: Thunderbyte
    Is there a planned number of NF books that you are going to write or is it going to be ongoing? Also, what is "Preserver" going to be about? Thanks (sorry to ask so many questions) :-)

    Response from: John Ordover
    Preserver will pick up the storyline from Dark Victory. NF is ongoing.

    Query from: Rick
    Is there any truth to the rumor that a novelization of ELITE FORCE is in the works?

    Response from: John Ordover
    No.

    More questions and answers can be found at the actual Q&A Board.

    Jonathan Frakes Interview
    Christian (4:18 pm CST)
    Raj Manoharan at IGN Sci-Fi has put up an interview with Jonathan Frakes (William T. Riker), who directed the last two TNG movies. In the interview, he talks about his experiences filming 'Insurrection,' his new movie 'Total Recall 2000' and his new series 'Roswell,' and he even reveals some of his other plans for the future:

    Frakes also filled us in on his other projects.: "We just sold a film to Sony called 'Steve Was Here, which is a black comedy," he says. "It also happens to have an alien. It was written by Norman Steinberg, the man who wrote My Favorite Year. And we had a UPN movie called Dying to Live which did very well. We produced that for my company and we're hoping to turn it into a series. So things are good."

    He also plans to collaborate professionally with wife Genie Francis of General Hospital fame. "We are working on two projects," Frakes says, "a movie of the week that I'm hoping she can act in if she could bring herself from General Hospital, and we actually talked about some other projects that we might develop together. So we will be working together."

    As for Frakes himself, currently you can catch him in a starring role in the new AMC series The Lot. "I love television," insists Frakes. "I'm glad to be back in it."

    The full interview can be found here.

    Voyager Top-Rated UPN Show Again
    Christian (4:18 pm CST)
    According to a report by Reuters, 'Star Trek: Voyager' finally returned as UPN's top-rated show last week with a repeat of 'Drone,' even though it had to share that position with 'Between Brothers.' Both shows tied with WB reruns of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and "For Your Love" at no. 104. The full list can be found here.

    Animated Trek Series 'A Hit'
    Christian (4:18 pm CST)
    A new article by AP's Ted Anthony talks about the success television networks are achieving by running classic series such as 'I Love Lucy' and, of course, the original Star Trek series. One of the networks which is doing this with amazing results is the TV Land channel, which together with sister station 'Nick At Nite' is showing old kid shows of which 'every single one is a hit,' including the animated Star Trek series. The full article on nostalgic television can be found here.

    Today On TV
    Christian (4:17 pm CST)
    -At 9:00pm this evening, UPN will be repeating Voyager's 'Extreme Risk.' Check out the official Paramount description of the episode:

    'Extreme Risk' - courtesy Paramount Pictures Torres' crewmates are alarmed when she repeatedly engages in reckless activity including orbital skydiving. Meanwhile, after the USS Voyager directs its probe into a hazardous atmosphere, protecting it from a Malon freighter, Lt. Paris launches a newly constructed, all environment shuttlecraft, to retrieve it.

    Thanks go out to the Continuum for both the description and the picture, which is of course copyrighted by Paramount Pictures.

    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the Original Series episode 'Return To Tomorrow.'

    -According to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective, British Sky One will be showing Deep Space Nine's 'Children of Time' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. At 18:00, BBC Two will be showing DS9's 'Second Sight,' followed 45 minutes by 'Sanctuary.'

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Der Maquis, Teil 1' (The Maquis, Part One) at 02:15 CET tomorrow morning, while at 15:00 they'll be showing 'Der Maquis, Teil 2' (The Maquis, Part Two).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (4:16 pm CST)
    A few interesting Trek BBS topics:

    -Is there really a Vulcan female aboard Voyager?

    -Who should be running the next Trek series?

    Find more at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (4:16 pm CST)
    Well, it appears the traditional 'summer calm' is over, as yesterday was the busiest day ever for TrekToday :-). Of course, that might also have something to do with Cinescape linking to the site in two separate stories, but it still made me a very happy man :-).

    Tuesday August 10, 1999
    Shatner Finds Wife Dead In Pool
    Christian (4:21 pm CST)
    Late Monday afternoon, William Shatner (James T. Kirk) found his wife dead in the swimming pool of their home. According to a report by CNN, she was the victim of an apparent drowning that authorities said they were treating as an accident:

    Nerine Kidd, 40, was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics. Shatner arrived at home and found Kidd at the bottom of the pool around 10 p.m. Pacific time (1 a.m. EDT), said the Los Angeles Police Department.

    "(Shatner) dialed 911 and dove into the pool to render aid to his wife," police Lt. Adam Bercovici said. The Los Angeles Fire Department was called to the Studio City home, but efforts to revive Kidd were unsuccessful, said department spokesman Brian Humphrey. "Sadly, she was beyond our help."

    When paramedics arrived at the scene about 10:30 p.m., Kidd was lying by the side of the pool. Shatner told fire officials that the last time he saw his wife alive was early Monday morning. Foul play apparently did not play a role in her death, Bercovici said. "She was home alone for a short period of time and accidentally drowned while swimming," he said.

    Kidd and Shatner had been married since November 1997. The official William Shatner fan club has put up a special memorial page which includes info on where to send condolences to. We at TrekToday would also like to extend our condolences to the family and friends of Ms Kidd and to Mr. Shatner himself.

    The Franchise's Future
    Christian (4:21 pm CST)
    Over at the Trek Nation, we've put up the 7th installment of our 'The Future's Franchise' article series. This week's installment was written by Jamahl Epsicokhan, who has been providing the world with reviews of the Original Series, Deep Space Nine and Voyager at his Star Trek: Hypertext site. Take a look at how he starts his article:

    "What's in Trek's future?"

    In a few ways, another recent question this somewhat reminds me of is, "How much impact will the Y2K computer crisis have on us?" It's impossible to know for certain; we can make our own educated guesses, but in most ways it relies upon the actions of others, outside our own control.

    But just as I can be reasonably sure we won't see society grind to a halt come January 1, 2000 (as a result of Y2K or otherwise), I can also be reasonably sure that Trek does have a future--both in the long term and the short.

    Jamahl's thoughts on the precise form this future will take can be found in the full article. After you've read it, please send in your comments to feedback@treknation.com!

    More Dorothy Dandridge Reviews
    Christian (4:20 pm CST)
    Welcome, Brent Spiner Fans has compiled a list of reviews of 'Introducing Dorothy Dandridge,' the new HBO made-for-tv movie starring Halle Berry and Brent Spiner. Most reviews seem to think the movie is okay, though not extremely special, though almost every review praises Brent Spiner's performance as Dorothy Dandridge's manager Earl Mills. You can find links to all the reviews here.

    Blaze Of Glory Pre-Release Event
    Christian (4:20 pm CST)
    An article by Evan Lorentz on the Decipher web site talks about the tremendous interest in their new Blaze of Glory expansion pack for the Star Trek Customizable Card Game. The game was shown this weekend at the GenCon gaming convention, during a special pre-release tournament, and apparently many fans showed up for the event:

    100 - yes, that's 100 - players turned out to do battle with the new expansion. Sadly, due to a limited quantity of expansion packs and an even more limited tournament space, we had to turn several players away from what would have been the game's largest tournament of all time.

    [...]

    People seemed unanimously enthusiastic about Blaze of Glory. As the tournament ran, the Decipher booth upstairs was jammed from open to close with people looking for demos of the game from Ambassadors Kate DeStephen, Neil Kirby, and Mick Reese. Some were returning to the game after periods of waning interest. Others were picking it up for the first time. All were eager to explore the possibilities offered by the new cards.

    A full report of the tournament (which was won by Dan Allman can be found here.

    Brooks Punches Again
    Christian (4:20 pm CST)
    What's it with Avery Brooks (Benjamin Sisko)? First he nearly gave Marc Alaimo (Gul Dukat) a broken nose during the last days of shooting the DS9 finale, and now he apparently did the same thing to Frasier's Kelsey Grammar. According to a report by UltimateTV, interaction between the two actors got a bit heated while filming the new movie '15 Minutes:'

    The actors were rehearsing a scene in which Brooks had to shove Grammer. "In the first take, Avery pushed Kelsey hard," a witness on the set tells the New York Daily News. "The second take was even worse. He ripped Kelsey's blazer." By the third take Grammer was fed up. "When Avery went to shove him, Kelsey practically picked him up. His adrenaline was pumping. It was like a boxing match."

    A bit more can be found in the full report.

    Today On TV
    Christian (4:19 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm, the Sci-Fi Channel wil be showing the Original Series episode 'The Omega Glory.'

    -Tomorrow morning at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Soldiers of the Empire,' according to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective. At 18:00 tomorrow, BBC Two will be showing one of my favourite TNG episodes, 'Starship Mine.'

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Der Blutschwur' (Blood Oath) at 01:10 CET. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Der Maquis, Teil 1' (The Maquis, Part One).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (4:19 pm CST)
    A few interesting Trek BBS topics:

    -Does Voyager have a spare warp core?

    -Is the Bridge Officer Test Deanna Troi had to take really valid?

    -This may well be the strangest thread the Trek BBS has ever had - what happened to me?

    Find more at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (4:18 pm CST)
    It turns out e-mail was down again for a while yesterday and this morning. I have now replied to almost all mails sent to me over the past few days, so, if you didn't yet receive a reply from me or if I didn't yet mention it on TrekToday, I probably didn't receive your mail. Please do resend them to me - my web host informs me they've solved the problem and it won't be happening again. (Which is good, as I will definitely move over to a different host if this problem persists)

    Monday August 9, 1999
    Shatner Finds Wife Dead In Pool
    Christian (Extra update, Tuesday, 15:49 CET)
    Late Monday afternoon, William Shatner (James T. Kirk) found his wife dead in the swimming pool of their home. According to a report by CNN, she was the victim of an apparent drowning that authorities said they were treating as an accident:

    Nerine Kidd, 40, was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics. Shatner arrived at home and found Kidd at the bottom of the pool around 10 p.m. Pacific time (1 a.m. EDT), said the Los Angeles Police Department.

    "(Shatner) dialed 911 and dove into the pool to render aid to his wife," police Lt. Adam Bercovici said. The Los Angeles Fire Department was called to the Studio City home, but efforts to revive Kidd were unsuccessful, said department spokesman Brian Humphrey. "Sadly, she was beyond our help."

    When paramedics arrived at the scene about 10:30 p.m., Kidd was lying by the side of the pool. Shatner told fire officials that the last time he saw his wife alive was early Monday morning. Foul play apparently did not play a role in her death, Bercovici said. "She was home alone for a short period of time and accidentally drowned while swimming," he said.

    Kidd and Shatner had been married since November 1997. We would like to extend our condolences to Ms Kidd's friends and family, as well as to Mr. Shatner himself.

    A Take On Trek Rumors
    Christian (4:16 pm CST)
    Over at the Trek Nation, Fred Shedian has put up what may well be his most interesting column yet, dealing with the phenomenon of internet rumours, as spread by sites such as TrekWeb, Ain't It Cool News, and, of course, TrekToday. Fred begins his column by talking about a very real problem:

    They are started when one site posts fictional or partially fictional information. From here, it spreads like a cancer and in a matter of six hours engulfs the entire world wide web. Factual or fictional, many times they taken as the law of the land. These remarks are not made in attempts to discredit those persons who have sources who have proven their legitimacy in the past. However, as I think most can agree, there are quite a number of people who have no clue what they're talking about. They exist only to create panic and gain attention for themselves.

    In the rest of the article, Fred analyses some recent rumours, and gives us some advise on how to deal with rumours. Find it all here, and, after that, please send in your comments to feedback@treknation.com!

    ODN Issue 90 Appears
    Christian (4:11 pm CST)
    Adam Bailey has published Volume IV, Issue 14 of the Optical Data Network, the bi-weekly Star Trek newsletter. The newsletter may not yet have reached you, but here is what you will be able to expect from it:

    We have the official word about the new Star Trek PlayStation game, which looks like it'll be quite a blast (not that I'll ever know, as I haven't owned a console game system since my Coleco). And Star Trek: Starfleet Command (not to be confused with Starfleet Command: An International Role-Playing Organization -- ODN's publisher, which has been getting tons of misdirected mail in the past couple months) has gone gold, and should be in stores next week. From the people I've talked to who have tried the demo, it sounds like quite a game.

    The details of the Vic Fontaine CD, around which there has been a great deal of buzz, have been released, as has information about the forthcoming Trek comics from DC. An article about Viacom attempting to shut down more sites violating its copyright rounds out the news article section, but that doesn't even begin to touch the news in this issue. We've also got tons of NewsBits, including apparent confirmation that the next series may actually be Starfleet Academy after all.

    Find all that and more in the full newsletter.

    ODN News Bits
    Christian (4:11 pm CST)
    Below you'll find the newsbits mentioned in the new edition of the Optical Data Network which I didn't catch, but which Adam Bailey, along with his delirium and his countless hours of research and caffeine, did manage to find:

    Even more news items can be found in the full new ODN issue, though most of the remaining 97 news items were already covered at TrekToday over the past few weeks.

    'New Worlds' Interview
    Christian (4:11 pm CST)
    Federation HQ, one of the best Trek Gaming sites currently around, has put up a new interview with Interplay's Dan Kingdom, the European producer for the 'New Worlds' strategy game. Kingdom starts the interview well, informing us that the game is set right after what is universally hailed as the best Trek movie ever:

    Federation HQ: Could you describe the background setting for the game? Which time period of the Star Trek timeline does it take place in?

    Dan Kingdom: Interplay currently holds the license for the original series of Star Trek, as well as the first six movies. Our previous adventure and simulation games have all taken place within these periods (Star Trek: 25th Anniversary, Star Trek: Starfleet Academy).

    Star Trek: New Worlds is set shortly after the fifth movie – Star Trek V: The Final Frontier – allowing us to use a technology level not too far removed from that seen in the later series.

    More info on New Worlds' gameplay, Paramount influences and special features can be found in the full feature.

    Goldsmith Conducts L.A. Philharmonic
    Christian (4:10 pm CST)
    Variety's Jon Burlingame has written a report about a recent special concert of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, which was conducted by none other than Jerry Goldsmith, the composer of the famous TNG theme. It had apparently been a long-time wish of Goldsmith to conduct an orchestra in his hometown, and now he finally got his chance in a two-night stand at the Hollywood Bowl. Apparently the concert even featured a few Star Trek pieces:

    Goldsmith, who turned 70 in February, finally got his wish, conducting the L.A. Phil in a two-night stand at the Hollywood Bowl. The 2-1/2-hour program showcased two dozen of his themes for movies and TV from the past 40 years, mixing scores for celebrated films (``Chinatown,'' ``Patton'') with memorable music from nearly forgotten ones (``The Wind and the Lion'') and recent commercial hits (``The Mummy''). [...] Goldsmith, closely identified with the ``Star Trek'' franchise via scores for four of the movies and themes for two of the TV series, even had a Klingon deliver his baton at the top of the show. (Later on, more costumed characters appeared: Disney's Mickey Mouse and Mulan led the audience in a surprise ``Happy Birthday'' singalong to the maestro.)

    The Philharmonic shone on Goldsmith's more lyrical compositions such as the love themes from ``Chinatown'' and ``The Russia House,'' but demonstrated a decided lack of energy in the more aggressive material, notably the opening ``Star Trek'' music. Highlights were two long medleys of classic themes that, for families present, bridged the generations (the 1960s' ``Sand Pebbles'' with the 1980s' ``Basic Instinct'' in the film medley; ``Dr. Kildare'' with ``Star Trek: Voyager'' in the TV medley).

    A full review of the concert can be found here.

    Wired Trek Convention Reports
    Christian (4:10 pm CST)
    Lindsey Arent at Wired has written not one, but two articles dealing with a San Francisco convention which took place last Saturday. The report seems to be almost exactly like any other mainstream con report - first it describes all the merchandise on sale, then it includes a few quotes from Trek actors who attended the convention (in this case Grace Lee Whitney and Brent Spiner), and then it gives us a few paragraphs about some of the more exotic Trek fans (including Klingons and an Orion Slave Girl). Grace Lee Whitney (Yeoman Janice Rand) apparently rather enjoyed this particular con:

    While she does not get paid to show up, Whitney gets a free booth on the convention floor where she can sell autographs for US$10 apiece, along with photographs and other merchandise. All told, Whitney said she usually clears about $3,000 per convention.

    It's not just the money, she said. "I love the contact with the fans, being able to speak about my role in Star Trek, and my whole life," she said. "You get to a certain age as an actress and they throw you away, so I'm very fortunate to be able to have a career spanning 35 years with Star Trek."

    More can be found in the article dealing with the merchandise available at the convention, and the article dealing with the guests and visitors.

    Playstation Game Not 'Red Squad'
    Christian (4:10 pm CST)
    Contrary to what was recently reported in a GameFan article, Activision's Star Trek game for the Playstation will not be called 'Red Squad.' According to Activision's Laird Malamed, that was only "an internal title that was probably reported from our European press event. The game is still officially unnamed. It won't be Red Squad."

    DeForest Kelly Awarded Golden Boot
    Christian (4:10 pm CST)
    A Variety news report by Susanne Ault mentions that DeForest Kelley (Leonard 'Bones' McCoy) was posthumously awarded the Western film and television 'Golden Boot' award this weekend.

    'Voyager: Elite Force' Interview
    Christian (4:09 pm CST)
    Lowtax at PlanetQuake has put up an interview with Jake Simpson, one of the programmers behind Raven's upcoming 'Voyager: Elite Force' shooter. This interview was conducted at the QuakeCon tournament, which took place this past weekend. Take a look at why Simpson thinks Voyager will break the supposed 'bad Trek game' curse:

    Lowtax: "When you showed off Voyager, the levels looked incredibly detailed and immersive. There's been too many FPS games these days that will amaze you the first 15 minutes or so, but become incredibly tedious and boring after a while. How are you making sure Voyager doesn't fall into this category?"

    Simpson: "Yeah, you start seeing the same textures over and over again. You see the same scientists over and over again, like in Half Life. I'm not dissing Half Life, Half Life is an excellent, excellent product, but they ran up against the walls of their day, the multiple characters, stuff like that. They did what they did, and still managed to make a great game. We're lucky; we have Quake 3, we're a year on in technology. I think the combination of all the great things in this game; the engine, models, scripting, effects, all of this coupled with the fact that it's based off Star Trek: Voyager will make this an incredibly fascinating game."

    In the full interview, Simpson talks about how they were able to use the 'Quake 3: Arena' engine, and about Paramount's participation in the game design process. Perhaps more interesting than the interview, though, is a report of a 'Voyager: Elite Force' workshop Simpson gave while at QuakeCon, during which he talked about the new characters created especially for the game:

    The Voyager game introduces a new team of people to the universe (this was first discussed and then finally cleared with Paramount. Jake even mentioned that there may be a book, and there's a vague possibility of an actual episode, that features this team). You're the leader of this team, who're basically kept around in case of emergency. You're a group of top special agents trained in a variety of skills, ranging from gunning down Borg to infiltrating enemy ships. Jake was quick to mention that while you'll be wandering around in a team, you don't have to control them personally. The AI is excellent, and will react automatically to most situations. You can direct it if that's the kind of game you want, or you can ignore them and let them do their thing if you're just into blasting the badguys.

    A *lot* more info on the actual game (which I'm beginning to really look forward to, btw) can be found in the full report. Thanks go out to Evil Avatar for the interview link.

    Today On TV
    Christian (4:09 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the second-season TOS episode 'By Any Other Name.'

    -Miraculously, the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective has been resurrected, which means that I'll be able to provide UK episode info again for at least the next two weeks. Tomorrow Sky One will be showing DS9's 'Ferengi Love Songs' at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Profit und Verlust' (Profit and Loss) tomorrow morning at 00:05 CET. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Der Blutschwur' (Blood Oath).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (4:09 pm CST)
    Everyone seems to be returning from vacation again, as the Trek BBS is definitely becoming more active. Take a look at a small sample of today's active discussions:

    -Should the producers stop trying to reinvent the wheel and instead just focus on the basic premise of TOS and TNG.

    -Did you see the MST3K Finale?

    -If, as we saw in 'First Contact,' the Vulcans were the ones to first meet us, how come Spock was the only Vulcan in Starfleet?

    Find lots more interesting discussions at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (4:08 pm CST)
    A rather quiet day today, fortunately, after three days of news items which nearly caused our mailbox to explode. If all goes well, we should have a new edition of that either tomorrow or the day after that, and should be more than interesting, judging from the mails which have already come in. Please do continue to send your thoughts on everything Trek-related to feedback@treknation.com!

    Sunday August 8, 1999
    Series V To Be Starfleet Academy?
    Christian (4:44 pm CST)
    What is it with the news over the past few days? First SFX Magazine reports we'll be getting more Seven of Nine next year, then the WWF reports we may be seeing wrestlers on Voyager, and now this news item seems intent on giving us all a heart attack. Over the past day or so, two separate sources posted reports about the new Star Trek series, which might well be 'Starfleet Academy.' First, Derek Wry, former webmaster of the Vulcan Café, posted the following to the TrekWeb Message Board:

    Apparently the new trek series IS in fact going to be a "Starfleet Academy" show (only it will be called something different) and will begin next season for a one year overlap with Voyager.

    A few hours after this post, Dangermouse, well-known internet spoiler provider, posted the following to the alt.tv.star-trek.voyager newsgroup:

    I find this difficult to believe, considering the number of times Rick Berman has said "no it will never happen", but according to the memos floating around there will be an Academy series running alongside Voyager season 7 (though it won't be called Starfleet Academy)...

    However, given the amount of deliberate, leak-hunting misinformation put about from the office, I'd believe this when I see it. (or more accurately when I see it listed in TV Guide and decide to watch a different channel instead.)

    This definitely makes the 'Starfleet Academy' concept look more real. As you may recall, a few weeks ago Mr. Showbiz seemed very certain about his 'Flight Academy' report, while I myself have heard from another source that the concept has at least been discussed. Personally I wouldn't be at all surprised if Series V does indeed turn out to be Starfleet Academy-based, though, of course, nothing at all has been officially confirmed yet.

    Now that the 'Flight Academy' thing is a bit more topical again, you might want to re-read Valentine Winter's Defending Flight Academy article, which we published at the Trek Nation about a month ago. If for some reason you'd like to know what I myself actually think about the 'Flight Academy' concept, please check out today's Hello World! Lasltly, if you want to let us know what you think about it, please send in your thoughts to feedback@treknation.com!

    Las Vegas Women In Space Event
    Christian (4:44 pm CST)
    The official Chase Masterson Homepage has a report up about a 'private party' which Chase Masterson (Leeta) will host at Quark's Bar in the Star Trek: Experience in Las Vegas, on the 18th and 19th of September. This is apparently part of a bigger event called Women in Space, which will also feature several other Trek stars:

    M.C. Productions presents Women & Space, a science/fiction event to be held September 18 and 19 1999, in Las Vegas, Nevada at the Tropicana Hotel. Where Las Vegas Begins. The headlining stars are Claudia Christian of Babylon 5 ™, Marina Sirtis of Star Trek TNG ™ ,and Nichelle Nichols, one of the original Women in Space, along with many other personalities from the science/fiction world. Go to our Other Guest page to find out more.

    Come to Las Vegas and see the Playboy booths and purchase a copy of Claudia Christians issue and than over to the Precedence Booth and get a copy of the new roll playing game that she is starring in and then get them both personalized by Claudia herself. Or head over to the Decipher booths and get the Star Trek gaming cards and have them signed by either Marina Sirtis or Nichelle Nichols.

    More info on the Women in Space event can be found here, while a bit more info about Masterson's role in it can be found here.

    7th DS9 Season To Start In Germany
    Christian (4:43 pm CST)
    The German Star Trek Index has a report up on Deep Space Nine's 7th season, which will start showing on Sat.1 on Saturday the 4th of September, at 15:00 CET. This means DS9's 7th season will start right after Voyager's third season, which Sat.1 will finish showing a week earlier. The full German DS9 schedule for the next month can be found in the full report.

    New Rick Berman Interview
    Christian (4:43 pm CST)
    WebTrek has re-printed an interview with Rick Berman (the man in charge of everything Trek), which first appeared in the British Star Trek Monthly magazine. Most of the interview deals with Deep Space Nine (and its possible future), Voyager, and 'Insurrection,' though he also talks a bit about the future of the franchise:

    Berman is loathe to discuss plans for Star Trek X. "My conversations with Paramount about a future film have been very preliminary," he reveals. "There certainly won't be any film in 1999 or 2000. At the earliest, the next Star Trek film would be out in 2001. The Star Trek IMAX film is on a very distant back burner. It's not dead like a dead crushed cockroach, but it's not an immediate possibility either. It has nothing to do with creative elements, but more with business elements."

    As the conversation comes to a close, Berman turns to the subject of his own company, Rick Berman Productions, and any upcoming projects that we can expect to hear about soon. "Hopefully, we'll start to see things very soon," he says. "We've has things in the works, but I needed to concentrate on Insurrection, finish out DS9 and wrap Voyager for the season. We've got some very interesting projects that we'll be starting up, but I can't talk about them yet. Maybe the next time we speak I'll be able to give you more information."

    The full interview, which was written by Ian Spelling, can be found here.

    Get A Star Trek Wedding
    Christian (4:43 pm CST)
    The Dallas Morning News has a short report on something which could easily have fitted in the 'Trekkies' documentary - the Star Trek weddings at the official Star Trek Experience. Since Valentine's Day, the Trek-themed attraction at the Las Vegas Hilton hotel has been hosting weddings for couples who would like their wedding experience enhanced by the presence of a group of Klingons:

    The weddings, which begin at $2,000 for 30 guests, take place on the Bridge of the USS Enterprise. Bride and bridegroom receive flowers, his and her Star Trek watches and a commemorative certificate, among other amenities.

    They also can choose two "Star Trek" characters to join the wedding party -- Klingons, Ferengi and Starfleet officers are all available. (Klingons have been the most popular.)

    Info on how to actually have your wedding take place at the Experience can be found in the full article.

    Starfleet Command Chat Log
    Christian (4:42 pm CST)
    The people at the Strategy Planet have posted a transcript of their chat with the designers of Interplay's new real-time strategy game 'Starfleet Command.' Take a look at what were probably the two most important questions asked:

    Spammy: Almost everyone asks: Can you specify any date that we should expect SFC to appear on shelves? :))))

    SFC-Marc: I heard Tuesday. Don't quote me on that though.
    SFC-Zach: We were wondering also :)
    ScrwySqrl: 11th - 13th is what Chris & Erik said earlier
    SFC-Marc: We basically hand the CD to a big machine and it does all the rest. Then we sleep :)

    Spammy: Another popular question : What's the minimum system the game runs acceptably on? Will games on puny computers be left in the dust?

    Trunkster: i heard it ran on P133s surprisingly well, but that's just secondhand info :)
    SFC-Marc: With a good vid card a 166 will get work acceptably. But of course the bigger the better.
    SFC-Marc: My wifes machine p-200 mmx with Voodoo 1 works very well.
    SFC-Zach: But big missions with lots of ships can kinda bog down

    Many more answers can be found in the full transcript, which can be found here - the Strategy Planet server seems to have a few problems at the moment, though, so you might have to try that link a few times before getting it to work.

    William Shatner Is Poor
    Christian (4:42 pm CST)
    Or he's lying through his teeth, which is probably a lot more likely. A new article in the New York Post talks about Star Trek's success after Star Trek, and talks about how little he actually got from his actual participation on Star Trek:

    The "Star Trek" phenomenon is a $9 billion business, but little has gone into the pockets of its first star, William Shatner. Despite the short-changing, the 68-year-old actor has still managed to build a personal fortune in excess of $20 million.

    Correct me if I'm wrong here, but I'm almost 100% certain Shatner does have a deal which grants him a set percentage of all Trek merchandise sales. At least one of the behind-the-scenes books I own (probably 'Inside Star Trek') mentions this. The article also mentions Shatner's Star Trek books:

    Shatner has earned more than an estimated $9 million from the 4.7 million copies of his books and is finishing up the last of an eight-book package for Simon & Shuster's Pocket Books - "Trek Science." It's a treatise about some 30 science fiction devices first seen on "Star Trek" shows that eventually because a reality, such as cell phones.

    More can be found in the full article, written by Paul Tharp.

    Today On TV
    Christian (4:42 pm CST)
    -The UK section will probably be out of service for a long time - unfortunately all my UK TV data sources seem to have disappeared :-(.

    -Tomorrow at 15:00 CET, German Sat.1 will be showing DS9's 'Profit und Verlust' (Profit and Loss).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (4:41 pm CST)
    It's an incredibly quiet Sunday, but some interesting discussions are still going on at the Trek BBS:

    -Isn't there a rank discrepancy between Data and Riker? Why did Data never get promoted beyond Lieutenant Commander?

    -Did the Defiant give a good performance against the Borg?

    More can be found at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (4:41 pm CST)
    For this 'Hello World!,' I'm going to assume you've already read the news report about Starfleet Academy becoming a possibility for Series V again. Personally I think this will either be one of the best Star Trek series ever done, or the complete destruction of the Star Trek franchise - there isn't a middle road for a concept such as 'Starfleet Academy.'

    On the one hand, 'Flight Academy' could be the series Valentine Winter pictured in his Defending Flight Academy series. It could offer us a unique look at how Earth (and the rest of the Solar System) really looks like in the Star Trek universe, as we've never gotten a good look at that. Finally, we'd be able to see how people in the Federation live, and not just those select few in Star Trek. We'd even be able to get some great DS9-style political stories, but then dealing with the politics of the Federation. The cadets wouldn't even need to be all teens - because of the exclusivity of Starfleet Academy, even the human cadets would be at least in their mid-twenties, while we could also have aliens and non-coms enter the Academy for an even more mixed age division. If they go for this kind of series, I'm sure I'll love it even more than Deep Space Nine.

    On the other hand, we could get 'Starfleet Academy 90120,' dealing with the problems of a bunch of teen cadets. Instead of meaningful episodes exploring various aspects of humanity, we'd get to hear about Bolian Cadet Brok not being able to get human Cadet Jones because she doesn't like blue. All long-time Trek fans would hate the series, and it would be the end of the franchise.

    Unfortunately, as we haven't yet heard anything more about the series' premise (as a matter of fact, we don't even know for sure yet that the series will actually be set on Starfleet Academy), I really don't know if the producers will go for the first or the second option. Certainly, recent events (such as the WWF news) have made me a lot less optimistic, but I still prefer to give Rick Berman the benefit of the doubt - he did, after all, also create Deep Space Nine and keep the franchise running for the past decade, which certainly deserves some respect. For now, I'll give Paramount the benefit of the doubt, and say that I think Starfleet Academy might actually be a good concept for Star Trek. Now let's just wait and see what actually happens and if the new series will really be Starfleet Academy - unfortunately, that's all we can do.

    What are your thoughts on this? Please let us know at feedback@treknation.com!

    Saturday August 7, 1999
    Wrestlers To Appear On Voyager
    Christian (4:07 pm CST)
    'Big Boss Man' and future Voyager star. Copyright WWF, presumably. No, I didn't want to believe it either when I first heard about it. But yes, it might actually be true. The August 6 edition of the Ross Report, apparently a weekly Wrestling newsletter, contains the following news bit:

    UPN's "Star Trek: Voyager" is interested in featuring several WWF Superstars in upcoming episodes this season. Apparently, producers already have a solid concept that would feature the Big Boss Man.

    'Big Boss Man' is the nice gentleman you see here above, who, as his official bio informs me, weighs 315 pounds, originates from Georgia, and has a 'finishing move' called the 'Boss Man Slam.' Strangely enough, his acting abilities aren't mentioned anywhere on the page. What are your thoughts on this? Will The Man be able to return Voyager to meaningful character episodes, or is this just another cheap ploy to get higher ratings? Let us know at feedback@treknation.com! Major thanks go out to Jose Gonzalez for pointing me to this!

    Three Trek Convention Reports
    Christian (4:07 pm CST)
    Jason Davidson's Star Trek News has put up three reports about appearances by Trek stars on recent conventions. Perhaps the most interesting report deals with an appearance by Armin Shimerman (Quark), who talked about the reason for Terry Farrell's departure from DS9:

    He seems happier about DS9 now. When I saw him a few years ago he was not very happy. Then he mentoned the raise he got for season seven (mystery solved!).

    The most interesting tibit he had was that Terry Farrell got the smallest raise for season seven. And that was why she left. Also, Terry did not want ANY footage of her in the finale since Paramount used footage of her WITHOUT her permission in a earlier episode. ("Penumbra").

    More can be found in the full reports dealing with Armin Shimerman, Nicole deBoer and Jennifer Lien (who doesn't look good on the photos included with the report, I have to say).

    'Computer Graphics' Review
    Christian (4:06 pm CST)
    Jeff 'Koganuts' Koga just let me know that the Wednesday, August 4th issue of the Hollywood Reporter contains a review of 'Computer Graphics,' the new documentary narrated by Leonard Nimoy. Reviewer Michael Rechtshaffen had this to say about Nimoy's participation:

    Given the target audience, there are times when the technical jargon might get a little heavy for non-pros, but the vivid pictures speak a thousand words. Leonard Nimoy's narration lends the documentary a nice sense of authority.

    The full review is also available online, but you'll only be able to access it if you already subscribe to the paper.

    'Dorothy Dandridge' Review
    Christian (4:06 pm CST)
    Rooted has put up what is probably the first online review of 'Introducing Dorothy Dandridge,' the new HBO movie starring Halle Berry and Brent Spiner (Data). As Rooted is apparently based in Houston (Spiner's home), the review talks a lot about Spiner's role in the film:

    Portraying [Dandridge's manager] Mills is actor Brent Spiner, a native of the Houston area. A youthful-looking 50, Spiner plays Mills from approximately his mid-thirties into nearly his fifties, when he managed Dandridge's career for 11 of the last 14 years of her life.

    While you would normally anticipate an actor receiving second billing in a film to jockey for attention during his time onscreen, Spiner instead chooses to take on his role with a good deal of subtlety, presenting Mills as an important element in Dandridge's life without trying to overwhelm Berry the actress.

    More can be found in the full review, which was written by Annie Hinch, apparently also a Star Trek fan. Thanks go out to Welcome, Brent Spiner Fans! for the link.

    Trek Toy News
    Christian (4:06 pm CST)
    For some reason I don't seem to be able to come up with original headlines for Trek action figure news items. Anyway, the Raving Toy Maniac is reporting about a new promotion campaign by New Force Comics:

    New Force Comics & Collectibles is about to go live with the full-page ad for their upcoming exclusive Captain Kathryn Janeway as seen in the episode "Flashback" 4.5-inch action figure from Playmates. You can catch it in September issues of ToyShop (9/10 issue), Tomart's Action Figure Digest (issue #69), Action Figure News & Toy Review (issue #84), and the November issue of ToyFare (#27, November released issue), or simply click on the photo to the right.

    The ad confirms that Janeway will be available in October and will retail for $8.99 each plus shipping (determined by quantity ordered).

    A chance to order the figure online can still be found at the top of the Toy Maniac's news page. In related news, the Maniac is also reporting that Target has reduced the prices of the 12" Insurrection and Wave 1 figures to just $23.90.

    Star Trek Episode Title Game
    Christian (4:06 pm CST)
    Julia Houston at Star Trek Fans sends word of a new 'Episode Titles Mix-n-Match Game' which she's got at her site:

    In the past thirty-plus years, we have seen about 500 Star Trek episodes whose titles use over 1,400 words with an abundance of evocative words and phrases ranging from the trite ("The Thaw) to the poetic ("Treachery, Faith And The Great River") to the bizarre ("Spock's Brain"). It would be fun to mix them together to form whole new ideas and expressions. And I hope they inspire some great fanfic stories.

    Full details on this game, which was created by Stephen Mendenhall, can be found here.

    Jeri Ryan News
    Christian (4:05 pm CST)
    The official Jeri Lynn Ryan Homepage has posted some news which they received directly from Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine) herself:

    If her plans work out, she will be on The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn on Monday, October 4. She also believes she'll be presenting at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards (the technical awards, not the acting awards), which will be televised on HBO Plus.

    Also pending for Ms. Ryan is a role narrating a couple of public service announcements for ECO (the Earth Communications Office), an organization created by people in the entertainment and communications industries to put environmental issues in the public spotlight. We'll have more news on this project as it develops.

    And, of course, I'll be reporting on it then as well.

    Jonathan Frakes Series Premiere Date
    Christian (4:05 pm CST)
    AnotherUniverse's Daily Buzz is reporting that Roswell, the new series produced by Jonathan Frakes (William T. Riker), will premiere on the WB on Wednesday the 6th of October. 'Roswell,' a teen series dealing with the Roswell incident, will air directly opposite Voyager.

    New 'Voyager: Elite Force' Shots
    Christian (4:05 pm CST)
    QuakeCity has posted a report of QuakeCon '99, the convention for fans of everything related to the 3D action game Quake. One of the games shown at the convention, which is taking place this weekend, is Raven's new 'Voyager: Elite Force' game, and QuakeCity managed to get about half a dozen new screenshots! They're just snapshots of a monitor, but they're of surprisingly good quality, and even show the game version of Captain Janeway for the first time ever. You can find the shots by going here.

    Happy Birthday!
    Christian (4:05 pm CST)
    Today is the 22nd birthday of Cirroc Lofton, who starred as Benjamin Sisko's son Jake on Deep Space Nine, and who is currently starring in the Showtime series 'The Hoop Life.'

    Today On TV
    Christian (4:04 pm CST)
    -Tomorrow morning at 02:00 CET, German Sat.1 will be repeating Voyager's 'Pon Farr.' At 02:50, they'll be repeating 'Die Kooperative.'

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (4:04 pm CST)
    A couple of interesting Trek BBS threads:

    -What is quantum slipstream, and how does it work?

    -Who should be in charge of the new Star Trek Series?

    Find more at the actual BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (4:04 pm CST)
    There is nothing more frustrating than an e-mail server which is down. If you emailed me over the past 8 hours or so, it did not arrive, so please send it again. Also, if you submitted news via the form, sent in mail to the mailbag, or emailed any other @trektoday.com or @treknation.com alias - it did not arrive. Please resend any mails you sent to me, and I hope this won't be happening again.

    Friday August 6, 1999
    Even More Seven In Six
    Christian (1:45 pm CST)
    Jay Davies-Pyke just sent in a report about the September issue of SFX Magazine, which contains a report on Voyager's sixth season:

    "Its like we're working on a movie, not a six year old TV series" said a SFX insider on the Star Trek: Voyager set. It seems now that with just one trek show on the go, paramount are ploughing a lot of effort - and money - into Voyager. [...] More certain is that we'll be seeing a re-borgified Seven-of-nine, and Jeri Ryan in a lot more leather. In fact, it seems the producers are going to moving Seven even more centre stage.

    Great, just what Voyager needed - even more Seven of Nine. What do you think about this? Please let us know at feedback@treknation.com so we can use it in the mailbag! Thanks go out to Jay for sending this in!

    Starfleet Command Press Release
    Christian (1:45 pm CST)
    Interplay has published an official press release announcing the fact that its new real-time strategy game 'Starfleet Command' has just gone gold. There isn't really any new info in the press release, but you can still find it here

    New Sev Trek Competition
    Christian (1:44 pm CST)
    John Cook at Sev Trek just uploaded a new edition of the 'Write Your Own Sev Trek' Competition:

    Sev Trek header
    Write Your Own Sev Trek Competition - cartoon spoofs of Star Trek. Copyright 1999 by John Cook.

    Take a look at what this week's competition deals with:

    Klingoffs and Gag!
    Continuing a trend of non-why comic strips, here is a single bubble comic strip allowing you to comment on that live, slithering Klingoff delicacy, Gag!

    Submit your punchlines here!

    CCG Tournament Report
    Christian (1:44 pm CST)
    Decipher has posted a report about the Benelux GenCon, which hosted this year's only European Star Trek Customizable Card Game Open Championship:

    51 players from Belgium, France, The Netherlands, Germany, Great Britain, Austria, Italy and Sweden traveled to Benelux GenCon in Antwerp, Belgium to play in this year's only European Star Trek CCG Open Championship. Competition was tight for the seat at the World Championships in November. All the top ranked players from the Rakasa V, Borg and Prema II regions were there. Johnny Ohlsson of Sweden won and will be joining defending World Champion Bill Chien and '99 qualifiers (so far) David Bowling and Ray Lacey at the 1999 Star Trek CCG World Championships at DecipherCon in Virginia.

    The full report contains a report of all the various strategies used by the contestants.

    Fantasticon Convention Report
    Christian (1:44 pm CST)
    Danielle Armbrust at the official Star Trek Continuum has written a short convention report about Fantasticon, which was held in the Los Angeles Airport Hilton and Towers this past weekend. Apparently the convention was a success:

    The three-day convention saluted the fans, actors and behind-the-scenes performers of Star Trek and others in the science fiction realm. Stars and admirers had the opportunity to mingle during various events, such as autograph sessions, panel discussions and the gala awards dinner. This relaxed atmosphere was exactly what Fantasticon creator William Campbell was attempting to achieve.

    "I always want it to be where the actors are accessible," he stated. "The important thing for me is that the fans who come and the stars who appear have a good time, and also that they feel good about themselves having been here."

    In the full report, several fans comment on the convention, while Robert Picardo (The Holodoc) also has a few things to say. Find it all here.

    Starfleet Command Manual News
    Christian (1:44 pm CST)
    Two interesting Starfleet Command news items make our way to us from the Starfleet Universe today. First of all, Interplay's Jim Pierce just posted a message to Interplay's Starfleet Command Forum, talking about the removal of the Starfleet Command manual from the net:

    I reported that the full manual was up rather than the quickstart manual. I saw no reason for this mistake to supply pirates with a full copy of the manual. That's why it's down now. I'm not saying that any of you would pirate SFC, but I don't know you all either :)

    Anyhow, please don't distribute it past people you trust until we hear the official word from Erik [Bethke] and Chris [Taylor]. Thanks and sorry to spoil the download

    Though not necessarily good news for the fans, this certainly is understandable. In related news, Sybex has just announced that it will be publishing the official 'Starfleet Command Strategies & Secrets' Book, which will be available sometime this month for $19.95. More on that can be found here.

    Voyager In 'Secret Agent' Slot
    Christian (1:43 pm CST)
    An article by Reuters and Variety gives some more info on the situation surrounding 'Secret Agent Man,' the UPN show which has been pushed back to midseason:

    A UPN spokesman said the switch was done in part to give "Agent" producers Barry Sonnenfeld and Barry Josephson more time to fine-tune the special effects and high-tech gadgetry. The action drama revolves around a trio of covert agents working for a shadowy organization known as P.O.I.S.E., whose mission is to "save the world in style."

    One reason for the delay was that a pilot for "Secret Agent Man" was never produced; UPN picked up the show on the strength of a short presentation reel.

    As reported yesterday, Secret Agent Man's Tuesday 9:00pm time slot will be filled by the casino-and-cops drama 'The Strip,' but, as that series isn't ready yet, UPN will be showing extra Voyager re-runs from September the 14th until October the 5th. Full details on 'The Strip' can be found in the full article.

    Happy Birthday!
    Christian (1:43 pm CST)
    Today is the 48th birthday of Catherine Hicks, who starred in 'Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home' as Dr. Gillian Taylor.

    Today On TV
    Christian (1:43 pm CST)
    -Tomorrow morning at 02:05 CET, German Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Der Trill-Kandidat' (Playing God). At 15:00 they'll be showing Voyager's 'Pon Farr,' followed an hour later by 'Die Kooperative.'

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (1:42 pm CST)
    Take a look at what's hot and happening at the Trek BBS today:

    -Was Spock's Brain really as bad as it is made out to be?

    -What would you like from Voyager next season?

    -Isn't it true that Data was the real Number One on TNG, instead of Riker?

    Find more at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (1:42 pm CST)
    Several people wrote in to ask about the sudden disappearance of 'Today On TV' from TrekToday yesterday. I'm surprised that that many people actually cared about it, but the explanation is quite simple - I simply forgot to post it yesterday. I can assure you this was just a one-time occurence, and it's back today again.

    Thursday August 5, 1999
    Virtual Star Trek Experience
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    SciFi Headquarters has put up a special feature about the Star Trek Experience in Las Vegas, which can now also be 'experienced' by people who aren't actually able to travel to Vegas:

    Want to Visit Star Trek: The Experience In Las Vegas? Well, I have tried to put together the next best thing from me mailing you plane and admission tickets. I have created a media section on my site dedicated to the attraction in Vegas. It includes over 15 video from the ride, opening and interviews with Star Trek stars and over 25 pictures from the attraction including many CGI shots from the actual ride. It was my idea to make this section for the many Trek fans how can not afford the travel to Vegas and for thoughs out of the USA who will probably not have the chance to see it in there life time.

    Click here to find the full feature.

    Eileen Collins 'Janeway' Nickname
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    NASA Watch, an unofficial NASA news site, has a short report up on Eileen Collins, who made history a few weeks ago when she became the first woman ever to head a space shuttle mission:

    it seems that a number of people at NASA have taken to refering to STS-93 commander Eileen Collins as "Janeway" - as in Katherine Janeway, commander of the starship "Voyager". The nickname is meant in a most complimentary way for the cool manner with which Collins handled her technically challenging ascent into orbit on STS-93.

    Well, apparently Star Trek is still an influence at NASA :-). Thanks go out to Katy Quinn for pointing me to this.

    New Mailbag
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    Yes, I know it's late, and unfortunately it's also rather short - several article writers weren't yet able to respond to mails about their articles, unfortunately. Still, the mails which we did receive are extremely interesting, dealing with everything from Paramount removing online videos to the Keith DeCandido interview, and from Steve Perry's "The Franchise's Future" article to ways to contact Paramount. Find all that and more here!

    'Birth of the Federation' Strategy
    Christian (4:02 pm CST)
    Computer Games Online has posted Part One of its 3-part strategy guide to 'Birth of the Federation,' Microprose's great turn-based strategy game. This first installment deals with the earliest colony-building steps of the game, and is actually quite useful. You can find the guide by following this link. Thanks go out to Federation HQ for the link.

    Unsung Heroes: Mr. Hogan
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    Who? That wrestler? No, Mr. Hogan, one of Voyager's Maquis crew members, who appeared in about half a dozen episodes and whose skull was mentioned in one other. In a new installment of her 'Unsung Heroes' series of articles, Julia Houston at Star Trek Fans tells us why his loss was especially tragic:

    It all started with those red-shirted guys in TOS. Kirk, Spock, McCoy, Uhura and two guys in red shirts would beam down to some planet. Kirk might have his shirt ripped off. Spock and Uhura wouldn't have a scratch. McCoy would get to say, at least once, "He's dead, Jim." And there would be two dead guys in red shirts.

    The lesson, boys and girls? Don't get attached to the guys in the red shirts. TNG was more subtle, if not sneaky, about the body-count thing. The "red shirts" no longer wore red, and they often got lines and names before their console exploded or the cross-fire picked them off. DS9 expanded on that by giving us "red shirts" who showed up in a few episodes before they were whacked.

    But it was Voyager who truly raised the stakes, not simply displaying minor characters with a few lines over a few shows, but actually developing them, making us like them and care about them, and then mercilessly killing them off.

    Personally I must admit to never really caring that much about Mr. Hogan, but without any doubt there are many fans of him reading this - if you're one of them, I recommend you check out the full article!

    Farrell One Of TV's Sexiest 16
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    The new edition of TV Guide contains a listing of TV's 16 sexiest stars, which TV Guide chose together with Entertainment Tonight. One of the sexiest females in the list is Terry Farrell, who starred as Jadzia Dax in DS9's first six seasons. Take a look at the 'Hot Stuff' accompanying the Farrell article:

    HOT STUFF

    Vitals: 35, almost 6 feet, blue eyes.
    Sexiest TV Moment? "Biting Worf [Michael Dorn, during some DS9 sex play]."
    Married? "Never, but still looking."
    What Is Sexy? "Intelligence, optimism and good hygiene."

    The full article about Farrell can be found here. Thanks go out to the Continuum for the lead.

    Starfleet Command Chat Today
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    At 6:00pm PST, Strategy Planet will be hosting a live chat with the design team of 'Starfleet Command,' Interplay's upcoming real-time strategy game. The event with take place in the newly created #strategy channel on 3DNet, as Strategy Planet says on its main page.

    DS9 Finale Novelization Review
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    Andrew Davidson at IGN Sci-Fi has written a review of the novelization of 'What You Leave Behind,' which was written by Diane Carey. According to Davidson, the novelization falls flat:

    The writing of What You Leave Behind is severely limited by the harsh constraints of the television episode, as well as the stiff Star Trek standard. While television versions of originally written material often explode into popular culture, written versions of television shows fall drastically short in every conceivable category. If there's really nothing better to do (the Home Shopping Network would be more entertaining) then consider What You Leave Behind as time-killing fodder, but it's not recommended.

    More can be found in the full review. I do have to wonder why Davidson decided to start reviewing Trek novels for IGN Sci-Fi - in most of his reviews, he has been telling us about his dislike for novel versions of Star Trek, so why does he insist on reviewing them?

    No Secret Agent On UPN
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    According to TV Guide, UPN's wacky new spy drama 'Secret Agent Man' has been shelved until midseason. The show was hailed as one of UPN's saviours for next season, but apparently it still had a few problems to sort out. Instead of 'Secret Agent Man,' TV Guide says UPN will now be running casino-and-cops drama 'The Strip' in the Tuesday 9:00pm time slot.

    Trek Games At GenCon
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    Gamecenter's Bill McClendon has written a short article about the GenCon Game Fair, which is scheduled to take place in Milwaukee this weekend. Apparently, Activision will be coming to GenCon to show off its three Trek titles for the PC:

    [The] three games are all based on Activision's Star Trek license and appear to cover the major genres. They are Star Trek: Armada (real-time strategy); Star Trek Voyager: Elite Force (3D first-person shooter); and Star Trek: The Hidden Evil (action-adventure). Those attending the fair can drop by Booth no. 917 for a look at these games.

    GenCon should certainly be interesting for Star Trek fans, considering Decipher will also be organising Customizable Card Game tournaments. Again, if anyone is actually going to the con, I'd really appreciate receiving a report when you get back!

    'Drone' Overnight Ratings
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    Ultimate TV just posted the Wednesday overnight ratings report for the six 'big' networks. Voyager's 'Drone,' on yesterday at UPN, scored a 2.4 rating/5 share, which is half a ratings point down from last week. 'Seven Days' scored a 2.1 rating/4 share. The full report can be found here.

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    The usual selection of interesting Trek BBS topics:

    -Is Kira now in command of Deep Space Nine, or will another Starfleet officer take over?

    -What are your thoughts on Star Trek's parallel universe episodes?

    -What do you think about the Delta Flyer?

    Find more topics at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:55 pm CST)
    Rain! We had rain today! Real, honest, wet, cool rain! Finally, the scorching heat wave is over! Yeehaa!

    Wednesday August 4, 1999
    'Night' Final Ratings
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    The Universe has posted the final ratings for last week's Voyager rerun of 'Night,' which, as usual, didn't perform too well:

    The final rating for the rerun of 'Night' is in, and it doesn't look good. Voyager got a 1.7 and was nr. 107. 1.7 is the lowest rating ever for a Voyager episode, but not the first time, because both a first run (Juggernaut) and a rerun have also gotten a 1.7. (Bride of Chaotica)

    UPNs highest rated show was Moesha with a 1.9. Malcome And Eddie and Between Brothers also got a 1.7.

    The original report can be found here.

    'Alice' Episode Rumour
    Christian (3:59 pm CST)
    NOTE: Below you'll find spoilers for the possible sixth season episode 'Alice.' Click here to avoid it.

    Again, click here to avoid being spoiled for 'Alice.'

    TrekWeb has posted a report about a new episode called 'Alice,' which is apparently filming this week. Take a look at how they describe the episode:

    An Alien Spacecraft that is possesed tries to manipulate Paris. Paris dumps B'Elanna to go deal with this spaceship. However, this is not the end of the Paris/Torres relationship! Well, in the tradition of the great reset button everything will turn out fine and the ship is destroyed... or is it??????

    In their full report, TrekWeb are classifying the report as a 'rumour,' based on the fact that no one has ever heard of it before, so this certainly has not been confirmed yet.

    Margaret Clark Answers Again
    Christian (3:58 pm CST)
    Margaret Clark, editor at Pocket Books, has once again updated her Q&A Board with some interesting answers. Take a look at two of those:

    Query from: Robert
    Margaret, Can you tell me the registry of the Nova class Equinox and the Centaur?

    Response from: Margaret Clark
    No but you should be able to find out about in an upcoming book.

    Query from: Thunderbyte
    Margaret, I've been reading here about the DS9 Millenium Trilogy and I think it's great. I also think it's cool that you and John are trying to vary what kind of books you do. Anyway, to my questions. 1. Does the third book (Inferno) which takes place twenty five years in the future include Ezri dax or Jadzia? 2. Is this an alternate timeline story? 3. How do they tie in with the game "DS9: The Fallen" I heard that on another web site. If it is not ture, please say so. Thank you very much for your information.

    Response from: Margaret Clark
    The third book does not take place 25 years in the future, well most of it… (One of my all time favorite lines? "Time travel makes my head hurt.") As the writers have not finished, I'm not going to tell, sorry.

    "The Fallen" shares the same inspiration as the novels, an outline by Judith & Garfield Reeves-Stevens

    More (including a one-page excerpt of 'Milennium'!) can be found in the full update.

    Shatner At Horse Show
    Christian (3:58 pm CST)
    According to the Official William Shatner Connection, William Shatner (James T. Kirk) will be attending the Shelbyville Horse Show, which starts today and lasts until Saturday. Shatner will be showing his Saddlebreds, who "are exquisitely beautiful and always show well." The event is held at the Shelby County Fairgrounds in Shelbyville, Kentucky.

    Conventionmania
    Christian (3:56 pm CST)
    Sarah Kuhn at IGN Sci-Fi (previously the Daily Sci-Fi) has written a new feature dealing with Star Trek conventions. Over the past few years, she'd noticed that Trek conventions weren't what they used to be - interest in Star Trek on the whole is declining, and many fans prefer the online Trek community over real conventions. Kuhn decided to visit a convention again, to see if they're still worth visiting. According to her it is, citing as one of the main attractions of a convention the chance to actually meet some of the Trek actors:

    Yes, friends, a big draw for con-goers is still the thrill of seeing your favorite Trek icons up close and personal and hearing their behind-the-scenes dish. The Portland con featured this tidbit from DS9's now-blonde Nana Visitor: "Louise Fletcher (Kai Winn) is one of the sweetest women. And she has the most girlish giggle." Can't you all just picture that faux goody-goody portrait of evil, Kai Winn, getting all silly over some wacky prank pulled during the Vedek Assembly meeting? Now you can.

    It's also fun to watch your favorite folks unwittingly morph into their characters before your very eyes. "(The writers) wanted Kira to get together with Gul Dukat," Nana related, suddenly sounding very stern and Kira-ish. "I said, 'I will not ever, ever play that.' You cannot make him a monster, then have a redemption." As she spoke, it was if her pretty blue dress and matching cardigan magically transformed themselves into Bajoran military duds and a wicked pair of boots before our very eyes. Similarly, Rene Auberjonois greeted the crowd with his trademark Odo growl: "Settle down out there. What do you think this is...Quark's?"

    Other reasons for going to conventions include the merchandise sections and the chance to actually meet fellow Trekkers, as Kuhn tells us in the full article, together with a few tips on how to make going to conventions even more pleasant.

    GenCon Decipher Schedule
    Christian (3:56 pm CST)
    Decipher, the publisher of the official Star Trek Customizable Card Game, has put up a complete schedule of Decipher events being held at GenCon '99, this weekend's gaming convention in Milwaukee. Decipher will be organising no less than 16 tournaments, 4 of which actually deal with their Star Trek game. Their full schedule can be found here. Are any of you actually attending the con, by the way? If so, please drop me a line so I can beg you for a convention report :-).

    'Men Cry Bullets' Interview
    Christian (3:55 pm CST)
    Michelle Erica Green at AnotherUniverse's Mania Magazine has put up an interview with Honey Lauren, who stars with Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine) in the upcoming feature film 'Men Cry Bullets.' In the interview, Lauren also talks a bit about working with Ryan:

    "She's insane - I'm troubled, but she's insane," laughed Lauren of Ryan's character. "She plays a woman who calls herself a debutante. Aren't debutantes supposed to be 17? There's something Glass Menagerie going on there!" Describing Lydia as "just this prettier-than-thou perky little happy southern belle," Lauren thinks Ryan's performance "is so much better in this film than it is for Seven of Nine. I don't fault her for Star Trek, but there's only so much you can do when you're playing a Borg robot."

    "Jeri Ryan is completely different in this film than in anything she's ever done," Lauren added, noting that "too much of Hollywood is about breasts, or the big blonde thing. Lynn - her name is Jeri Lynn, I always called her Lynn - is really a great actress. I was blown away by her work. We had a real mutual respect for each other, and we got along really well. She's so funny in this film, I had nothing but a good time talking to her and I think we helped each other."

    More info on the film (which will be Jeri Ryan's feature film debut), and a bit of background info on Honey Lauren herself, can be found in the full interview.

    Star Trek: Red Squad Gains Title
    Christian (3:55 pm CST)
    Which, now that I think about it, is a headline which renders pretty much the rest of this post useless. GameFan has put up a short preview of Activision's new Star Trek game for the Playstation, which will be called 'Red Squad.' In the preview, they tell us a bit more about the premise and the graphics:

    Red Squad is still very early in development - the project was initated some six months ago, but the game already looks very promising. The Trek license obviously brings a unique richness and atmosphere to the game, as well as a solid backstory... something that Colony Wars lacked. The player doesn't get to control the U.S.S. Enterprise; instead, you'll control a small starfighter in a series of campaigns against the Borg, Romulans etc... The missions look far cooler than anything found in Colony Wars, with a much more forgiving learning curve.

    Since that's pretty much all that is known about the gameplay at the moment, let me (in true Trek form) lay some technobabble on you. Red Squad will run at 30fps, with over ten ships battling at the same time, all highlighted by dynamic lighting from multiple light-sources. A lot of attention has been paid to the size of the ships, so the Romulan Warbirds are truly massive (and the cloaking effect is smoking!) when compared to the player's puny starfighter. Just imagine the enormous Borg cube!

    A bit more on the developer can be found in the full preview. 'Red Squad' definitely has potential - just think about it: Activision could get both Wesley Crusher and Nog to make guest appearances!

    Official 'Dorothy Dandrige' Site
    Christian (3:54 pm CST)
    HBO has opened the official web site for its 'Introducing Dorothy Dandrige' movie, which will premiere on the cable channel on Saturday the 21st of August. One of the stars of the movie is Brent Spiner (Data), who also has a bio with picture on the site. Thanks go out to Welcome, Brent Spiner Fans! for this.

    UPN Fall Schedule
    Christian (3:54 pm CST)
    Mr. Video Productions has put up the official UPN Fall 1999 Schedule, listing all the shows which struggling network UPN will be showing next season. There are no surprises in the list (except for Moesha spin-off "Mo'Nique" being re-titled to the extremely exciting "The Parkers"), but it does give you the chance to see precisely which shows UPN is counting on to save it from total oblivion next season. All the shows are presented with the official press picture and the press release description, and they can be found here.

    On Starfleet Command Pre-Orders
    Christian (3:54 pm CST)
    Interplay has announced the following about pre-orders for their 'Starfleet Command' game:

    You will probably receive it early next week, we have gone gold (finaled) but it still takes some time to replicate the disks put them in jewel cases, put them in a box with all the other components - manual, ref card, ref poster, etc. then put those in a master carton that goes on a truck or in some case on a plane then it goes to Digital River and to our retailers...well you get the picture :) We conservatively allow 10 days for this entire process but you should receive it soon.

    The original announcement can be found here. If any of you did already order the game, I wouldn't mind receiving a review once you've played it for a while :-)

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    -At 9:00pm, UPN will be repeating Voyager's 'Drone,' which originally aired on the 21st of October, 1998. Take a look at the official description from the Continuum:

    'Drone' - Courtesy Paramount Pictures There's a sudden emergence of a dangerous new lifeform aboard the U.S.S. Voyager - a Superborg - after The Doctor's 29th century mobile emitter technology mysteriously fuses with Seven of Nine's Borg nanoprobes.

    Thanks go out to the Continuum for both the description and the image, which is of course copyrighted by Paramount Pictures.

    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the second-season TOS episode 'Return To Tomorrow.'

    -Joseph Greco reports that British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'By Inferno's Light' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. At 18:00 BST tomorrow, BBC Two will be showing DS9's 'Melora,' according to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Das Paradiesexperiment' (Paradise) at 2:05 CET tomorrow morning. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Die Illusion' (Shadowplay).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:53 pm CST)
    Take a look at a selection of the most interesting Trek BBS topics:

    -What do you think will happen to Voyager's ratings next season?

    -How does the Universal Translator really work?

    -Will we ever see Kes again?

    Today at the Trek BBS, there are over 40 other active discussion topics - why not join in and let us know what you think?

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:52 pm CST)
    I feel really left out. All around me, the whole country is getting crazy about the full solar eclipse which will be taking place in England, France and a few other countries in Europe next week. Tens of millions of people will probably flock to the strip of land where the eclipse will actually be visible (or rather: not visible), but I'm not nearly as excited as everyone else seems to be.

    My brother, on the other hand, has been wildly excited about it for months now. He's even planning to travel to North France to see the event next week. As is quite usual in our family, he also forgot to plan anything, so now it's extremely hard to even get there, let alone find a hotel which still has room. Things will presumably be even worse when the event is over, and millions of people will want to get back at the same time.

    I really can't understand why anyone would want to spend two days of travel time to see something which only takes two minutes. Yes, I know this only happens once every 40 years around here, and yes, I know it's supposed to be extremely beautiful - but is it worth spending two days on? Almost everyone else here tells me it is, so obviously I'm wrong, but still.... two DAYS?

    Tuesday August 3, 1999
    The Franchise's Future
    Christian (3:20 pm CST)
    Over at the Trek Nation, we've just put up the sixth installment of our 'The Franchise's Future' series. This week's installment was written by David E. Sluss, who has been providing the net with the world's most biting (and entertaining) reviews of Star Trek episodes at the Cynics Corner. As could be expected from him, he's not all that positive about Star Trek's future:

    Star Trek is in serious trouble, folks. Regular readers of Cynics Corner Interactive won't be surprised to see me write something like that, since I'm prone to accentuate the negative in all things, but I think that even the most ardent of fans can see, in their heart of hearts, that I'm not too far off the mark here.

    In the rest of the article, David looks back at the past, and gives us three reasons why Trek's future may not look all that bright. All that, plus a possible solution towards saving Star Trek, can be found in the full article. After you've read it, don't forget to send in your comments to feedback@treknation.com so we can print them in the mailbag!

    Trek Toy News
    Christian (3:05 pm CST)
    The Raving Toy Maniac has updated again with two rather interesting Star Trek Toy news items. First of all, the site is reporting that the ToyFare Exclusive 'A Piece of the Action' Captain Kirk figure has now begun shipping. Secondly, they're announcing that Kay-Bee Exclusive Admiral Kirk and Captain Spock from Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan will have new head sculpts and will sell for approximately $49.99 each. Currently, these two figures are scheduled for November or December of this year.

    Scientists Prepare For Virtual Trek
    Christian (3:04 pm CST)
    A NASA press release talks about a new computer software system which will allow researchers to conduct ground-breaking science experiments aboard the Internation Space Station without ever leaving home, as the program will allow them to remotely operate the experiments from anywhere in the world. The program is known as the 'Telescience Resource Kit,' shortened as 'TReK' - perhaps inspired by our favourite television series?

    [Update, 22:21 CET:] Unfortunately, NASA PR representative Tim Tyson just replied to my mail, saying that "TReK was just an acronym by the draw of the creator or the program and not chosen in anyway for a space(ial) relationship to StarTrek."

    Trek Millennium Celebration
    Christian (3:03 pm CST)
    What will you be doing at the turn of the Millennium? If you live in Florida and haven't decided yet, here's something you might want to participate in:

    It's the only official Star Trek party on the East coast and the best deal for the Millennium New Years in the galaxy! Join Robert (Gowron) O'Reilly and Star Trek fans everywhere as we ring in the New Year at Millennium Trekk! [...] Tickets will be $85 per person and will include:

  • Gala Dinner prepared by a special chef who has worked on DS9 and the Trek Movies!
  • A charity Auction to benefit the Epilepsy Foundation
  • Live Classic Rock Music from WarBand
  • Balloon Drop at midnight for Trek Prizes
  • Party favors, Champaign toast, and countdown to midnight MCed by Robert O'Reilly!

  • More information on this event can be found here.

    Star Trek Bottled Water Details
    Christian (3:02 pm CST)
    And there I was thinking yesterday's Star Trek Pizza news was the worst we could get. The Starbase-1 Coffee Company has sent out a press release about its upcoming Star Trek bottled water, which will go by the name of 'Altair Water.' For this, they're apparently cooperating with the Canadian Cool Clear Wtaa company. This is what we'll be able to expect from the beverage:

    The bottled water products will be offer in a wide range of sizes from 12 oz to 1.5 litres. In addition, the water will be bottled in a customized, patented new bottle, contributing to the uniqueness of the product. As will be quoted on the product label: ``Dr. McCoy introduced 'Altair Water' in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock(TM). 'Altair Water', bottled in the mountains of planet Altair VI, is widely regarded as the galaxy's finest natural beverage.'' Wtaa has especially formulated this 24th Century beverage ... using state-of-the-art water purification systems, where purity can be scientifically measured and controlled. Unique labelling been designed using various Star Trek(TM) icons.

    Star Trek(TM) Water will be sold through a wide network of North American beverage brokers and distributors that will insure the product's availability and proper representation. It is targeted for sale in all the various trade categories including, retail, grocery, club stores, drug stores, convenience stores, military, food services and special events. In addition a special web-site will be available where Star Trek fans can order their water direct, or find the closest location to them.

    Info on the two companies involved in this can be found in the full press release.

    Starfleet Command Designer Chat
    Christian (3:01 pm CST)
    This Thursday, Strategy Planet will be hosting a live chat with the designers of Interplay's Starfleet Command chat. Take a look at the info blurb from the Planet's main page:

    Make sure to attend our Starfleet Command Chat Event, Thursday August 5th (please note the date change) at 6PM PST. The event with take place in the newly created #strategy channel on 3DNet. Hope to see you there!

    Considering the game designers announced yesterday that the game has gone gold, there should certainly be enough to chat about on Thursday. BTW, am I the only one feeling sorry for the Starfleet Command designers? They spent years working on the game, and now it will be released at about the same time as 'Command & Conquer: Tiberian Sun,' destined to be the biggest real-time strategy hit of the century. I know which game *I'll* choose, and it won't be Interplay's game...

    Azetbur Actress In Latino Film
    Christian (3:01 pm CST)
    A press release from Kushner-Locke, the company behind the Gran Canal Latino sattelite channel mentions that it will soon be showing the original feature film 'Mambo Café.' One of the film's stars will be Rosana De Soto, who also starred in 'Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country' as Azetbur. In the film, 'a beautiful Puerto Rican girl and her family in Spanish harlem devise a novel plan to attract business to their restaurant, causing a wildly comic sequence of events ending in near disaster.'

    New Continuum Sweepstake Prize
    Christian (3:01 pm CST)
    I just noticed that the people at the official Continuum have made available a new prize for their Star Trek Summer Sweepstakes. In previous months, people could win a trip to the Star Trek Experience in Las Vegas or a visit to Paramount studios, but this month the prize is a 'Panasonic PalmTheater:'

    Each week we'll give away an exciting Panasonic PalmTheater™ DVD-L50 Portable DVD Player. This compact two-pound device plays DVD movies on a built-in 5" diagonal widescreen LCD monitor. Provides up to three hours of playback from its rechargable battery and a card-sized remote control.

    You'll be able to enjoy your new library of five Star Trek DVD movies from Paramount Home Video, featuring 'Star Trek V: The Final Frontier,' 'Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country,' 'Star Trek Generations,' 'Star Trek: First Contact,' and 'Star Trek: Insurrection.'

    You can participate in this by clicking this link, and by being American (grumble, grumble).

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:00 pm CST)
    -At 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the second-season TOS episode 'A Private Little War.'

    -According to Joseph Greco, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'In Purgatory's Shadow' tomorrow at 17:00 and 23:30 BST. At 18:00, BBC Two will be showing TNG's 'Birthright, Part One,' according to the Television Observation Unit of the Star Trek Collective.

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'O'Briens Identität' (Whispers) tomorrow morning at 01:15 CET. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'Das Paradiesexperiment' (Paradise).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:00 pm CST)
    No less than 30 topics are being discussed at the Trek BBS today, including the below ones:

    -Was the Blair Witch Project really as scary as it was made out to be?

    -Do you think the Spoiler-Free Opinion Summary provides a good measurement of the quality of each series?

    Discuss more topics at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (2:59 pm CST)
    If all goes well (and several feature article writers send in their replies to mailbag mails in on time), we should have another edition of the Trek Nation mailbag tomorrow! If there are any last-minute thoughts you'd like to see included, please send them to feedback@treknation.com!

    Monday August 2, 1999
    Starfleet Command Goes Gold!
    Christian (4:14 pm CST)
    Breaking news here - Interplay's Erik Bethke has just announced that their upcoming Starfleet Command real-time strategy game has gone silver / gold! What this means is that the game is now completely done, and will now be duplicated and shipped. Take a look at Bethke's post on the matter:

    We just silvered! Expect in stores on or about August 11-13. The whole SFC team thanks you for your support during the development cycle!

    P.S. There is still a lot to look forward to in post-release… missions, MP options, etc.

    In his full post he also gives info on the contents of the pre-order bonus CD. This certainly is great news - I can't wait to play the game! Thanks go out to the Starfleet Universe for the lead!

    Star Trek Magazine Issue 5
    Christian (4:09 pm CST)
    Jeff 'Koganuts' Koga tells me that issue 5 of the official Star Trek Magazine just appeared in the shops. The main features of the magazine are interviews with Garrett Wang (Harry Kim) and Wil Wheaton, though it also contains an interview with Voyager's Executive Producer Brannon Braga. The interview was conducted quite a while ago, apparently, as is evidenced by the following quote:

    Ron is a very talented writer, and I don't know exactly what he'll bring. He is probably, in my opinion, the best Star Trek writer of all. He just has a passion for the franchise. He is able to take an ordinary star trek story and bring a unique spin to it. I couldn't ask for anyone better than Ron. I think he's very, very good with character. I'm looking forward to seeing what he does with these characters.

    Other things that can be found in this month's edition of the magazine include a feature on the creation of Deep Space Nine, plus 'technical briefings' on the various Trek ships. You can find the magazine in your local (U.S.) store, or order it directly from the official web site.

    Alexander Siddig Film News
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    Dark Horizons has a short news bit about 'Vertical Limit,' the new film which will be starring Alexander Siddig (Julian Bashir) as the leader of a rescue team. Take a look at what Dark Horizons has to report:

    Some more names have been revealed to have joined the cast of the mountain climbing thriller "Vertical Limit". Robin Tunney ("The Craft"), Scott Glenn ("The Silence of the Lambs") and Temeura Morrison ("Once Were Warriors") will all be joining Chris O'Donnell, Bill Paxton, Isabella Scorpuro ("Goldeneye"), Alexander Siddig (TV's "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine") and Nicholas Lea (TV's "The X-Files") on the film which is about to begin shooting on New Zealand's South Island. Under the helm of Director Martin Campbell ("The Mask of Zorro"), shooting is expected to wrap around January-February next year for release mid-2000. NZ's famous Mt. Cook and its surrounding peaks will be doubling for the Hindu Kush in Pakistan. Morrison is playing the role of a Pakistani helicopter pilot. Thanks to 'Shaun'.

    The original report can be found at the Dark Horizons news page. Thanks go out to Jeff 'Koganuts' Koga for this.

    Jammer's Voyager Season 5 Report
    Christian (4:01 pm CST)
    Jamahl Epsicokhan at Star Trek: Hypertext has just put up his Voyager Season Five Recap, offering a brief look at each of the episodes and an analysis of the season as a whole. He ends his analysis by comparing the series to Deep Space Nine:

    It is perhaps the greatest of all ironies that one of DS9's biggest criticisms when it launched in 1993 was that the setting was "too static." Now, more than six years later, DS9 has ended as the Trek series to have supplied the most ongoing changes in story and setting, while Voyager is still essentially doing the same things it always has--wandering a Delta Quadrant that offers little in terms of new settings, cultures, ideas, or story approaches. We just have lots of "space." But what's in this space? As of now, I'm inclined to call it a static, primarily empty area of space--traveled by a starship that covers a lot less ground than a certain space station sitting stationery at the mouth of a certain wormhole.

    It's too bad Voyager can't hold up when one steps back and looks at everything, because the paradox is that I find the series still supplies reasonable, enjoyable entertainment in short bursts. The indictment, I think, is that it could and should supply a lot more than that. See you in the fall.

    The full analysis, which I personally tend to agree with, can be found here.

    A Take On Trek Novels
    Christian (4:00 pm CST)
    Fred Shedian returns again for his weekly Trek Nation column A Take On Trek, this time looking at the 'literary frontier:'

    When a person talks about the Star Trek Franchise, most of the time they are referring to the television shows and theatrical releases. Novels and other writings not seen are normally not considered "cannon" within the universe, cast aside by quite a few readers as not important. Yet, these books were what kept the franchise alive and mysterious in the 70's and 80's. Although a movie would come out now and again, novels brought people in and continued character development. In recent years, have the importance of these literary works been downplayed?

    The full column further explores this question. After you've read it, please send in your comments to feedback@treknation.com so we can use them in our mailbag!

    Shatner Gets $500,000 For Horses
    Christian (3:56 pm CST)
    I just received a more than interesting package in the mail - the Lexington Herald-Leader of Saturday, July 17, 1999. The paper contained an article by Maryjean Wall, looking at his recent selling of 25 American saddlebred horses:

    Shatner recently sold one farm and bought another in Woodford County with longtime saddlebred owner and trainer Donna Moore. The new property, fronting Versailles Road and Blue Grass Parkway, is larger than his previous farm, Belle reve on Shannon Run Road, but has fewer stalls for horses.

    The sale 'was an effort to reduce the size of my stock to fit in 19 stalls,' said Shatner. Although he sold about 25 horses, he has about 30 left, including broodmares and young stock. Shatner said the sale grossed about $500,000. [...] Shatner said he and Moore are thinking of calling their new partnership Belle-Moore. Belle reve, the name of the farm he sold on Shannon Run Road, will remain the name for his individual stable.

    Major thanks go out to the person (who wishes to remain anomymous) who sent in this article - I more than appreciate it!

    Starfleet Command Tournament Prizes
    Christian (3:56 pm CST)
    Starfleet Universe has just updated with some news on the Mplayer Starfleet Command King of the Hill Tournament, for which a rather exciting set of prizes has just been announced:

    4 Weekly Winners: An Original Series T-shirt and a Star Trek watch to help monitor shifts in the time/space continuum.

    Grand Prize Winner: A Klingon Bird-of-Prey model kit, a Franklin Mint laser cut TOS Enterprise crystal cube and an autographed copy of the game by producer Erik Bethke and game designer Chris Taylor.

    Info on the event can be found on this page.

    Ordover/Greenburg Marriage Report
    Christian (3:50 pm CST)
    Or is it Ordover/Ordover now :-)? In any case, Star Trek writer Susan Schwartz recently posted a report of the wedding of Star Trek book editors John Ordover and Carol Greenburg to the Star Trek Books BBS. Take a look at a (partial) guest list:

    A lot of people you know were there: me, Josepha [Sherman], Mary Taylor, L.A. Graf, Diane Carey, David Brodeur, David (oh wow, I'm blanking, but it's something like) Galanter, who drove in from Michigan, Peter David, Michael Jan Friedman, Mary Taylor, John Vornholt (in from Arizona), Keith di Candido, Susan Wright, all the staff of Star Trek Interactive and the editors...

    You couldn't move without bumping into STAR TREK people and other very nice people who all had a wonderful time.

    The full report can be found here.

    Star Trek Book Database Opens
    Christian (3:48 pm CST)
    David Henderson at Psi Phi has announced the official opening of his Star Trek Books Database:

    Welcome to the Star Trek book database. Here you will find information about the novels, reference guides, biographies, and other books from the Star Trek series. Included for each book, where available, is a cover image and the back cover text. Some books also have a message from the author, and others have more detailed descriptions or links to other books.

    [...]

    This database is searchable based on the title, author, series, type of book (paperback, hardcover, audiobook, etc.), and other criteria. Or, you may wish to simply browse the database. You may order many of these books from Amazon.com (or for those in Europe, Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.de) via the links to the left from the page of any book.

    Find all your favourite books in the full Psi Phi books database!

    Jerry Goldsmith Interview
    Christian (3:45 pm CST)
    The Sunday Calendar edition of the Los Angeles Times contains an article about Jerry Goldsmith, the composer famous for creating the TNG theme, the Voyager theme, and the scores of nearly half of all Trek features. One of the things he's praised for is his diversity:

    Goldsmith's refusal to repeat himself is admirable, says writer-director Michael Crichton, who's worked with the composer on six films, including "Coma" and "The Great Train Robbery." But it makes it harder to identify his work. Crichton found that out when Goldsmith was unavailable for a project and he was desperately seeking alternatives.

    "I watched the video of 'Air Force One' and said, 'That's terrific--maybe I hold Jerry in too high esteem,' " recalls Crichton, whose "13th Warrior" is due out in August. "The credits rolled: 'Jerry Goldsmith.' I look at Anthony Hopkins in 'The Edge.' 'Pretty good [music],' I said to myself. The credits rolled: 'Jerry Goldsmith.' Jerry is the most varied and inventive film composer of our time--a real pro who does what the picture calls for, which is a vanishing breed in Hollywood."

    The full article, which was written by Elaine Dutka, can be found here - unfortunately it doesn't mention Star Trek at all. Thanks go out to Jeff 'Koganuts' Koga for pointing me to this.

    Replicate Pizzas During Trek Marathon
    Christian (3:39 pm CST)
    A new press release from B3TV, a company which attempts to bring e-commerce to the TV remote control, just announced it will be joining San Francisco's UPN affiliate KBHK-TV and Domino's Pizza to deliver its first live commerce-enabled Interactive TV ads. To bring a special high-tech flavour to the event, they'll be doing this during a special Star Trek marathon:

    On August 21 and 22, 1999, KBHK-TV will air its long-anticipated Star Trek Marathon, offering fans twelve hours of Star Trek programming sponsored by Domino's Pizza. During the marathon, Domino's ads will be specially enhanced by B3TV to allow users of Microsoft's WebTV® Plus Receiver and EchoStar's DISHplayer to order a free pizza.

    With technology that Capt. Kirk would envy, Star Trek fans can play starship commander when they order a pizza just the way they like it. By pointing and clicking on a sizzling hot Domino's Pizza spot, people can instantly order their pizza with up to three toppings to suit their taste without ever leaving the captain's chair. The pie arrives hot, delicious and free. The KBHK-TV Star Trek Marathon airs in the San Francisco Bay Area from 4:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. PDT on Saturday, August 21 and from 2:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, August 22, 1999.

    The connection between being a starship commander and eating pizza escapes me, but still, it's nice to see that Star Trek is still on the forefront of developing technologies. More info on B3TV and Domino's lovely pizzas can be found in the full press release.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:38 pm CST)
    -Today at 7:00pm and at 11:00pm Eastern Time, the Sci-Fi Channel will be showing the Original Series episode 'The Immunity Syndrome.'

    -Joseph Greco tells me that tomorrow, at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'For The Uniform.'

    -In Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Das Harvester-Desaster' (Armageddon Game) at 00:05 CET tomorrow morning. At 15:00, they'll be showing 'O'Briens Identität' (Whispers).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:38 pm CST)
    The week begins anew with some interesting discussion topics at the Trek BBS:

    -What if Voyager doesn't get home next year?

    -What are your favourite Star Wars novels?

    Feel free to participate in any of these threads at the Trek BBS, where you're also more than welcome to start a new discussion topic!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:38 pm CST)
    Phew. Not only is it a Monday, it's also an incredibly hot Monday. I'd type up mroe about how I hate this, but unfortunately it seems the keyboard is melting away...

    Sunday August 1, 1999
    Trek Writers Want More Money
    Christian (3:36 pm CST)
    And not just the Star Trek writers. The Writers Guild of America, which represents the people who actually write scripts for television shows and movies, wants more money. This fall, the guild will start negotiation to discuss its share of basic cable and foreign TV residuals. Take a look at what Ultimate TV is saying about this:

    The contract talks, according to Hollywood Reporter, could result in a new residuals formula, replacing the current rate contained in the WGA's existing contract, which was ratified last year.

    If the talks fail to produce a new agreement on foreign and basic cable residuals before May 2000, the WGA's members would be asked whether they want to continue with the usual fast-track contract talks or revert to the more traditional hard-line approach to bargaining in advance of the expiration of the guild's current contract May 1, 2001.

    The full news report about this can be found here.

    Viacom Shuts Down DS9 Finale Video
    Christian (3:36 pm CST)
    The new edition of the Starfleet Journal contains a news item about the LCARS Federation Databank, which offered the DS9 finale video for download. Not surprisingly, Paramount did not appreciate this, as they instructed their lawyers to do something about this:

    On July 16, LCARS: Federation Databank webmaster Sean Stephenson received a letter from the law firm of Sargoy, Stein, Rosen & Shapiro. The letter pointed out that his site linked to another site which carried a streaming video version of the recent Star Trek: Deep Space Nine series finale episode, What You Leave Behind, in clear and plain violation of Viacom's copyrights.

    [...]

    "I realize I was pushing the envelope a bit here with the links, so I tucked my tail between my legs and removed the links to the last DS9 episode," Stephenson wrote. "I did call the law offices to let them know I was removing the link. Did I do the right thing by removing the links? Legally, yes. Should I have fought it? I don't think so. It wasn't on my site but it was the entire episode, so, I took it off. It gets them off my back -- for the time being..."

    The full article contains some background material on the matter. My personal thoughts on the matter, in case you're interested, can be found in today's Hello World!

    GamePen Trek Games Article
    Christian (3:35 pm CST)
    Andrew S. Bub at GamePen has written a new feature dedicated to 3 of the upcoming Star Trek games - 'Voyager: Elite Force,' 'Deep Space Nine: The Fallen' and 'Insurrection: Hidden Evil.' Take a look at what the feature tells us about 'Insurrection: Hidden Evil:'

    Unlike most adventure games, do not expect full response dialogue trees. Instead, characters may or may not talk to you depending on what you are carrying. An item may gain a good reaction, while holding a phaser just isn't friendly. Tricordors will be an essential puzzle-solving tool and communicators will be used so you can keep tabs on Data and Picard to see what they are up to, gain advice, or coordinate exploration.

    Of course, the brand new Enterprise E will appear towards the end. Ship-to-ship combat may not be in the cards, but a rendered starship interior should please fans and provide a compelling backdrop against whatever the developers have in store. We'll see just how compelling a digital sequel to the film is when it is released sometime before Christmas.

    The full article can be found here. Thanks go out to Jim Sizemore for pointing me to this!

    DS9 And Voyager Season Reports
    Christian (3:34 pm CST)
    This is actually several days old already, but to my great and enourmous shame I must admit that I completely forgot to update my link to the Star Trek Nielsen Ratings Information Database when it joined us here at the Trek Nation. Greg Fuller at the aforementioned site has uploaded the season reports for Voyager and Deep Space Nine.

    First up was the Voyager season 5 report, which, as could be expected, wasn't all that positive:

    This season was certainly looking promising for a time, turning very strong November, December, January, and February performances. The show, for a time, seemed to be overcoming its huge coverage deficit. "Timeless," "Thirty Days," "Nothing Human," and "Dark Frontier" turned in the strongest showings of the season, each propelling themselves over a 4.0. In March and April, however, the show suffered a complete nervous breakdown. No episode after "Dark Frontier" topped the 4.0 mark and only a handfull even managed to get over the 3.5 mark. "The Fight" is the standing champion as far as low Voyager ratings go, earning only a 2.9. "Juggernaut" aired on a special night, so it doesn't get counted into most of the calculations for Voyager's season, but did set the standing all-time low mark Voyager has ever recieved (including hiatus reruns) at a 1.7. That mark has since been tied by one hiatus episode this summer. The season also ended on a surprisingly weak note, seeing "Equinox" rate lower than both "Warhead" and "Relativity."

    As far as the explanation for the late season drop goes, the prime suspect is baseball. UPN's affiliates are so weakly tied to the network that the stations (of which many own contracts to show the local baseball games) have no problem pre-empting UPN's lineup to show their local games. This can bump Voyager out of its 9:00 timeslot which means that the number of homes watching Voyager in that city goes into the books as a zero. There is also some evidence that UPN's coverage has slipped even more and that it is probably only now airing in about 65 percent of the nation.

    After that came the final DS9 season report, which was a lot more positive:

    DS9's final season was the first to buck DS9's typical trend of starting out fairly well, staying high until February, then collapsing. Thanks to the publicity of DS9's end, the final 8 weeks of the season proved to be just as strong as the earlier parts of the season. This year was also the first time that a May Sweeps period averaged a higher rating than the February Sweeps period three months earlier. This only proves what many have suspected: had DS9 recieved the full support of Paramount as it did during the Final Chapter, it may have fared better over the years. Even comparing this season to DS9's previous years, the show did fairly well, better than it had ever done before in comparison to the previous season.

    The full Voyager Report and the full DS9 report contain a more detailed analysis, plus a comparison of the previous seasons' statistics with the most recent season.

    New Starfleet Journal Appears
    Christian (3:34 pm CST)
    Volume 2, Issue 8, of the Starfleet Journal, the only monthly Star Trek online magazine has just appeared. This month, the magazine contains its usual round-up of the latest Star Trek news, a new reader letter, and three new columns. One of these is a very special column by 'investigative reporters' Heater Jarman and Jim Wright, who chose to write a column together in which they discover how Paramount really plans on Saving Star Trek. You can find that column here, while you can access all the rest of the SFJ's content via its main page.

    Body Parts
    Christian (3:34 pm CST)
    Almost Frankenstein-like, ET Online and TV Guide have teamed up to put together 'Tinseltown's total package.' In this new poll, you can construct your perfect actor or actress by voting for the best body, smile, hair and eyes of certain actors. Trek star Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine) can be found in the Best Body category, which is also populated by people such as Jennifer Love Hewitt and Pamela Anderson. Thanks go out to the Continuum for the lead.

    Congratulations!
    Christian (3:33 pm CST)
    Today John Ordover (Pocket Book's Executive Editor of Star Trek novels) is marrying Carol Greenburg (Assistant Editor). Naturally, we wish the happy couple a long and happy marriage!

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:33 pm CST)
    -According to Joseph Greco, British Sky One will be showing DS9's 'The Begotten' tomorrow at 17:00 and at 23:30 BST. At 20:00 BST tomorrow, they'll be showing the two-hour telemovie 'Dark Frontier.'

    -Tomorrow morning at 15:00 CET, German Sat.1 will be showing DS9's 'Das Harvester-Desaster' (Armageddon Game).

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:33 pm CST)
    Despite it being a Sunday, a few interesting discussions are still taking place at the Trek BBS, including this one:

    -Who is your Star Trek role model?

    Find more topics at the actual BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:32 pm CST)
    (Begin Rant)

    For this 'Hello World!,' I assume you will have read the news update about Viacom complaining to a site which was hosting a digitized version of the DS9 finale.

    As I also said when the 'What You Leave Behind' video first appeared on this site, I do not at all find it surprising that Paramount objected to this. The site in question claims to have been just linking to the video, but this certainly was not how the video was presented - it was embedded inside a page hosted on this one site, and every site which mentioned the appearance of the news video linked to this specific page. The impression was strongly created that the video clip was actually part of this site, even though the video clip was hosted on a mirror Geocities site. In the same way, if I would include an 'adult' picture here at TrekToday which was hosted by another site, my web host would still shut me down, as the picture would appear to be part of TrekToday.

    Personally I strongly support Paramount taking steps against this - not only was it a blatant violation of copyright, it was also extremely bad for the Star Trek franchise, as this meant less income through foreign tape sales. This is something Star Trek fans should consider when watching the episodes online - if this means less Star Trek videos will be bought, it will also decrease Star Trek's chances for the future, as less money is brought in. I find the posting of complete Star Trek episodes on the net highly objectionable, and I would like to ask all webmasters to refrain from doing this.

    What are your thoughts on this? Please let me know at feedback@treknation.com, so we can use it in the mailbag - I'm extremely interested to hear what you all think about this.

    Saturday July 31, 1999
    Keith R.A DeCandido Interview
    Christian (4:10 pm CST)
    I promised this about a week ago, but here it finally is - our interview with Keith R.A. DeCandido, Trek comics writer and novelist. In the interview, which was conducted by 'Captain Jim' Zimmerman, Keith talks about his upcoming TNG comics mini-series 'Perchance to Dream,' and his upcoming Ambassador Worf TNG novel, 'Diplomatic Implausibility.' Take a look at how DeCandido describes 'Perchance to Dream:'

    How would you summarize the plot of the story? What is the significance of the title, "Perchance to Dream?"

    Damiano is a Federation member planet where the animal life has three genders. The new planetary governor -- who will be the first Damiani to serve on the Federation Council -- is the subject of a scandal: she only has one sexual partner (on Damiano, traditional family units have three adults). Most don't give a damn, but a moralist faction is making assassination threats. Worf is asked to bolster security for the inauguration, and he manages to derail three assassination attempts.

    As revenge, the leader of the assassins unleashes a telepathic weapon that attacks people through their dreams -- hence the title, which is from Hamlet's "To be or not to be" speech. All the individual issue titles come from that speech as well. The Enterprise crew has to figure out how to defeat the weapon -- and soon, since the weapon has locked Data into his dream program. The first issue opens with a dream Data has where he is alone on the ship when it explodes, and the weapon is making him act out that dream in real life in the fourth issue.

    In the full interview, we learn a lot more about 'Perchance to Dream' and 'Diplomatic Implausibility,' but also about his future plans in comics and novels, and his own personal background. Find it all here! Over the next few months, we hope to publish even more such interviews, as Captain Jim will be heading a special comics site at the Nation, which will also feature things such as a bulletin board and reviews of the actual comics, once they start coming out. Look for more on this soon!

    Chase Masterson Hosts Comedy Event
    Christian (4:10 pm CST)
    The official site of Chase Masterson (Leeta) has put up an announcement about a new stand-up comedy event which she will host. The show, called the 'Grrl Genius Club,' will feature some of the best stand-up comedians, and will benefit a fund caring for babies with AIDS. The show will be held in Los Angeles, at the 'Improv on Melrose.' Details on how to get tickets can be found here.

    'Riddles' Episode Spoiler
    Christian (4:10 pm CST)
    NOTE: Below you'll find some spoilers for the newly 'discovered' season 6 episode 'Riddles.' Click here to avoid being spoiled.

    Again, click here if you don't want to hear about this episode.

    WebTrek has posted a report about 'Riddles,' the first Voyager episode to be directed by Roxann Dawson (B'Elanna Torres). The episode starts shooting on August 12th, and the following casting notice was sent out for this episode

  • Narok: Male alien, mid 30s-40s, an inspector. He's been hunting a species of aliens for years. He's a little eccentric in his theories, a little obsessed with his goal of finding these aliens.
  • Vulcan Master: Male, late 50s-60s, A leader of other Vulcans. (Could indicate this is a Tuvok episode.)
  • Alien Male: A strange, eerie being, mid 30s-50s.

  • The original report can be found at WebTrek's Voyager page.

    Sexy Trek Males
    Christian (4:09 pm CST)
    Jackie Loeb just sent in a report about a recent poll at FreeVote, in which readers were asked about the 'Sexiest Male Character in a Sci-Fi Series.' The results were quite favourable for some of the Star Trek actors:

    No.1 - Julian Bashir - 6576 votes / 16.5%
    No.3 - Tom Paris - 3493 votes / 8.7%
    No.5 - Odo - 2888 votes / 7.2%
    No.6 - Weyoun - 2671 votes / 6.7%
    No.7 - Chakotay - 2062 votes / 5.1% No.9 - Gul Dukat - 1764 votes / 4.4%

    Thanks go out to Jackie for reporting this!

    TrekMinds #9 Available
    Christian (4:09 pm CST)
    The German Radio Trek team has put up the ninth edition of their bi-weekly online radio show 'TrekMinds.' This week, the show has features about the nineties' reflection on Voyager, Star Trek episodes which never were, and a discussion about the German voice-overs for the episodes. The show is available in both modem and ISDN-optimized versions at the TrekMinds downloads page.

    Jeri Ryan Convention Photos
    Christian (4:09 pm CST)
    The Official Jeri Lynn Ryan Homepage has put up 7 photos of the recent appearance by Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine) at the Sci-Fi Expo convention. The convention was held on the 10th of July in Plano, Texas. You can see the photos here.

    Patrick Stewart Chat Transcript
    Christian (4:09 pm CST)
    The official Continuum has posted the transcript of last Thursday's chat with Patrick Stewart, best known for his role as Jean-Luc Picard. Take a look at some of the most interesting parts of the chat:

    Baan asks:
    I recently read somewhere that you would not be doing any more Star Trek movies. Is there any truth to this?

    Patrick Stewart:
    Hello Baan. I have no reliable information about any future ST movie. And I think it unlikely that anyone will have for another 9-12 months. When I know, you will be the first to hear.

    Holodeck woman named Minuet. asks:
    Do you like PC's or Mac's?

    Patrick Stewart:
    Hello Holodeck woman named Minuet. I'm a Mac man. Couldn't you tell? And by the way... Minuet was probably the favorite guest character of mine and Jonathan Frakes. We often campaigned to have her back, but with no success.

    John Cleese, 18 asks:
    Being English, do you appreciate Monty Python?

    Patrick Stewart:
    Hello John Cleese. I followed Monty Python from its first episode and indeed many of the catch phrases became a part of my family's life. It has been an ambition to work with your namesake or other Python castmembers, but so far, without luck.

    Now that is something I'd love to see. Find lots more in the full transcript.

    Starfleet Command Not Silver Yet
    Christian (4:08 pm CST)
    Interplay's Erik Bethke has posted the following news announcement to the official Starfleet Command Message Board:

    You all have been correct in that the final silver is near at hand… (though not quite yet.) Our bug count is very, very low. The team and QA are very pleased with how SFC has turned out…

    You all have so much more to look forward to in the Final compared to the Demo. Honestly I think about how much fun you all are having with the demo and it has far exceeded our expectations. With your reaction to the demo - we are really, really anxious and excited to see your reaction to the final.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the term going 'gold,' instead of silver? In any case, find Bethke's full post here. Thanks go out to the Starfleet Universe for the link.

    'Adventures in Time and Space'
    Christian (4:08 pm CST)
    The new edition of the Deseret News contains a mini-review of 'Adventures in Time and Space,' the new 'clip book' featuring excerpts from most of the Star Trek novels Pocket Books published over the past 20 years. You can find the review by clicking this link.

    New Zealand 'Insurrection' Video
    Christian (4:08 pm CST)
    According to New Zealands's The Press, the rental video of 'Star Trek: Insurrection' has just been released there. The Press reviewer Dave Wilson thinks the movie is okay:

    The ninth Star Trek movie has all of the elements designed to appeal to the fans, and a good villain in F. Murray Abraham. However, story and the usual spectacular special effects aside, Star Trek Insurrection, certainly on the TV screen, feels more like an elongated episode of The Next Generation series.

    Patrick Stewart as Captain Jean Luc Picard wears his role like a favourite suit, while newcomer Donna Murphy is a perfect match for him as the woman who melts the icy calm of the captain.

    The full article can be found here.

    Today On TV
    Christian (4:07 pm CST)
    -Tomorrow morning in Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating Voyager's 'Das andere Ego' at 04:15 CET. At 10:40 CET, they'll be repeating 'Der Wille.'

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (4:07 pm CST)
    Several interesting topics currently being discussed at the Trek BBS:

    -Is Treknology respected as an important part of Star Trek?

    -What is the Spock's Brain episode of each series?

    -You know you're a Trekkie when...

    Find more threads at the Trek BBS, where you're of course more than welcome to participate as well!

    Hello World!
    Christian (4:07 pm CST)
    It only appears to be getting hotter here, unfortunately :-(. I took four ice cold showers over the course of the day, but unfortunately they only provided momentary relief from the heat. Personally I wouldn't mind to have it be just a few degrees cooler...

    Friday July 30, 1999
    The Franchise's Future
    Christian (4:12 pm CST)
    At the Trek Nation, we've just put up the fifth installment of our 'The Franchise's Future' series of articles. This week's article was written by Steve Perry, who regularly reviews Star Trek episodes for TrekWeb.com. Steve is rather positive about the future of the franchise, though he also signals a few problems:

    Is Trek dead? No. Is it dying? No.

    Trek has a base fandom that I think can be preserved. Through thick and thin, DS9 remained the top rated drama in syndication. In a crowded syndication market, that's good.

    But that doesn't mean Trek's future is by any means guaranteed. The ratings remain good, but the big problem hasn't hit yet. As De Kelley's recent death reminded us, the diehards are getting older, too. Fewer and fewer of us can tell which TOS episodes the actress Diana Muldaur, who would go on to play Dr. Pulaski, was in. I'm not saying that we're all about to die off, just that a lot of the old reliable fans are getting to be older and somewhat less reliable. That's a demographic CBS wants, not one Trek needs.

    As ever, read the full article by going here. If, after that, you have any comments to make, please send them in to feedback@treknation.com so we can print them in the mailbag! Next week's article is probably going to be a lot less positive, as it will be written by David E. Sluss of the Cynics Corner - I'm already looking forward to it!

    Vulcan's Heart Author Interview
    Christian (3:46 pm CST)
    Star Books has put up an interview with Susan Schwartz and Josepha Sherman, authors of the new "Vulcan's Heart" novel. As, for some incomprehensible reason, StarBooks decided to print all the answers in capitals, I won't be quoting from the article - you'll just have to read it for yourself.

    New Voyager Syndication Promos
    Christian (3:43 pm CST)
    Mr. Video Productions, who just moved his server to his own home in order to limit the site's downtime, has just uploaded several new Voyager syndication promos. Besides the already known 'Are You A Voyager' promo, the new promos (I think) are 'The Voyagers,' 'Intrepid Souls' and the Launch Presentation. You can find all the clips by clicking this link.

    BET Tonight Interviews Online
    Christian (3:43 pm CST)
    SCIFI Headquarters has put up a video file showing the whole hour of "BET Tonight" that aired 11:00 pm EST July 28th. In it, Nichelle Nichols (Uhura) and Tim Russ (Tuvok) talk about African Americans in science fiction, and other aspects of Hollywood. The 19.1MB Real G2 Video can be found by going here.

    Klingon Academy Trailer
    Christian (3:43 pm CST)
    IGN PC has put up some very interesting new media files related to Interplay's upcoming 'Klingon Academy' game:

    Hey, we don't like to stay late at work any more than the next guy, but we though it was worth the effort this time around. We've managed to get our hands on the eagerly awaited Klingon Academy trailer that will be hitting the web tomorrow just a little bit early. As if that wasn't enough, we've also managed to procure 4 different Klingon Academy desktop patterns designed by the amazingly talented (and frighteningly humble) Chris Salazar. Chris was kind enough to include each of the patterns in three different resolutions, 1024x768, 800x600, and 640x480.

    At 24 MB, the trailer will take a while to download, but it undoubtly will be worth it. You can find the trailer and the wallpapers here. Thanks go out to Tim Callahan for the link.

    Play 'Blaze of Glory' First
    Christian (3:43 pm CST)
    According to the Decipher web site, the introduction of the Star Trek Customizable Card Game expansion pack 'Blaze of Glory' has been delayed until August 18th. Though this may sound bad, there is actually a good side to it for active CCG tournament players:

    Please note these important changes to tournaments at the two big upcoming conventions: GenCon August 5 - 8 in Milwaukee, and Comicon in San Diego, August 13 - 15. Since the release date of Blaze of Glory has been delayed until August 18th, the Star Trek Customizable Card Game sealed deck events at these conventions will now be pre-release events.

    Players will have the opportunity to be the first in the world to play with these exciting new cards. [...] Players who enter these tournaments will be given a pre-constructed battle side deck along with one Star Trek Starter Deck II and 4 Blaze of Glory booster packs.

    Full details on the events are also available.

    'Strange New Worlds II' Review
    Christian (3:42 pm CST)
    Issue 18.4 of Eon Magazine contains a review of 'Strange New Worlds II,' the short story collection from Pocket Books. Reviewer Arnold T. Blumberg awards the book a solid A:

    STRANGE NEW WORLDS II features a plethora of time travel stories (always my favorite sci-fi narrative device) and quite a few familiar faces, from Gillian of STAR TREK IV to temporal investigators Dulmer and Lucsley from DS9's "Trials and Tribble-ations." Of note are the top three prize-winners (the book awards top honors to the best of the selected stories for each volume), "I Am Klingon," "Triptych," and the first prize winner, "A Ribbon for Rosie." While DS9 is under-represented, perhaps it will be better served in the third collection, which I certainly hope will be on its way soon. Get to those PADDs and get writing, Trekkies! It's time to chart a course for some new voyages of your own.

    Three more paragraphs of praise can be found in the actual review.

    Klingon Language Satire
    Christian (3:42 pm CST)
    Satirical site The Onion just posted a rather amusing new story, dealing with the Klingon Language phenomenon. The story is based on a report which was supposedly released by the Modern Language Society on Monday, which stated that speakers of the Star Trek-based Klingon language outnumber individuals fluent in Navajo by a margin of more than seven-to-one:

    "Navajo, a 3,000-year-old Native American tonal language belonging to the Athabaskan/Na-Dené group of tongues, is clearly dying and will likely be extinct by 2010," MLA president Frederick Toback said. "Fortunately, though, the sad, steady decline of this once-proud Native American tongue has been more than offset by a rising interest in Klingon culture."

    Klingon speakers said they are pleased with the report. "Every day, more and more people are discovering the excitement and challenge of Klingon, or, as it's called by native speakers, tlhIngan-Hol," said Doug "HoD trI'Qal" Petersen, an official grammarian at the Klingon Language Institute. "After just a few weeks of studying Klingon, you, too will be saying 'qo' mey poSmoH Hol!'"

    The hilarious full article can be found here. Just to avoid all confusion - this is a satire, and should not at all be taken as fact. Rather amusingly, I see several people on the net who don't seem to be getting that :-). Thanks go out to Jamahl Epsicokhan for the link!

    Patrick Stewart Chat Report
    Christian (3:41 pm CST)
    Yesterday was the Continuum chat with Patrick Stewart and, while he didn't say anything really shocking, below you'll find some of the most important things he said at the chat:

    The full transcript will undoubtedly soon appear here.

    Nicole deBoer Uses A Mac
    Christian (3:41 pm CST)
    MacCentral, a fan site for 'that other computer,' just posted a rather interesting news item:

    Canadian actress and "Star Trek Deep Space 9" star, Nicole deBoer, mentioned at a Boston Trek convention last week that she uses a Mac. More specifically, she owns an iMac and she's excited about the iBook, she said.

    More mentions of Macs can be found in the full article. Thanks go out to Jeff 'Koganuts' Koga for ponting me to this.

    'Barge Of The Dead' News Item
    Christian (3:41 pm CST)
    NOTE: Below you'll find some spoilers for 'Barge of the Dead,' one of the episode's of Voyager's sixth season. Click here to avoid reading those spoilers.

    Again, click here to avoid being spoiled.

    Captain Riker just sent a report about a recent science-fiction convention he visited, which had Eric Pierpont (from the 'Alien Nation' show) as one of its main guests. At the con, Pierpoint mentioned he'll be making an appearance on Voyager next season, as a Klingon. This Klingon is apparently a doomed individual who has been put in charge of taking the Klingons who died a dishonourable death to the Klingon version of Hell. These dishonoured souls are taken to hell on the 'Barge of the Dead,' hence the name of the episode. Major thanks go out to Captain Riker for sending this in!

    Michael Dorn In 'Shadow Hours'
    Christian (3:40 pm CST)
    Cinescape is reporting about a new film called 'Shadow Hours,' which will feature Peter Weller (from Buckaroo Banzai) as the Devil. The film is written and directed by Isaac Eaton, and one of the other stars in the movie is Michael Dorn (Worf).

    Leonard Nimoy Y2K Video
    Christian (3:40 pm CST)
    ZDNe has a new article by Bob Strauss, looking at the new 'Y2K Family Survival Guide' video, narrated by Leonard Nimoy (Spock). In the article, Nimoy talks about what he thinks will happen on the 1st of January, 2000:

    "I'm not an alarmist, and I don't have time to be negative," Nimoy says. But shooting the video did alert him to some important Y2K issues: "I'm not sure I would choose to fly around the country at that time, and if I were a farmer in Montana, I'd want to have a butane supply. My biggest concern is the effect Y2K might have on important facilities, such as atomic generators, power plants, and hospitals. And if you're a person who relies on medication, you should get a supply in advance."

    Of course, Nimoy is well aware that much of his authority in the public's mind comes from his stint as chief science officer on the starship Enterprise. "I'm identified with technology and future science, and I like to keep up with new developments," he says. "People tend to believe me, and I have tried to protect that credibility." Still, Nimoy doesn't consider himself much of a PC wonk, though the high-tech gizmos in his office a Palm III organizer, a Sony VAIO laptop, and a digital video camera belie his modesty.

    Some thoughts from Nimoy on how this ties in with Star Trek can be found in the full article.

    AVault Star Trek Games Feature
    Christian (3:38 pm CST)
    The Adrenaline Vault has put up a massive feature about all seven upcoming Star Trek games, including 'Starfleet Command,' 'Voyager: Elite Force' and 'Armada.' Take a look at how writer Adam Swiderski begins his feature:

    Space...the final frontier....

    There are few words more famous in the history of television than those that began the opening sequence for Gene Roddenberry's Star Trek. Despite being an early flop, the adventures of James T. Kirk and his starship, Enterprise, have become an eminently recognizable facet of science fiction the world over. The show ran for many seasons, even longer in syndication, and spawned six movies and countless novels revolving around its characters. In the 1990's, the legacy of Star Trek has continued to grow with the creation of the wildly popular "sequel" series Star Trek: The Next Generation (which itself ended up on the silver screen and bookshelves everywhere) and its spinoffs, Deep Space Nine and Voyager. All in all, Roddenberry's vision of a future in which mankind can put the violent past behind and reach for the stars has captivated the imagination of the public at large for years, and shows little sign of slowing down.

    And the computer game industry is coming along for the ride. While Star Trek has always had a presence in the market, releases bearing the venerable license have generally been few and far between; almost events in and of themselves. The coming year, however, will see a veritable explosion of Trek titles hitting the shelves, as the splitting of the license by Paramount into different timelines (classic series, Next Generation, etc.) has left several design houses in possession of the rights to one aspect of Trek or another. But what's great about this flood of transporters and tribbles onto computers everywhere is that, whereas once Trek titles were restricted to one or two genres, there can truly be said to be something coming for everyone.

    The full feature has previews of every Trek game currently in development, and is definitely worth checking out - if you only want to read one Trek gaming preview, make sure it's this one! You can find the preview by going here. Thanks go out to Blue's News for the link.

    Today On TV
    Christian (3:37 pm CST)
    -Unfortunately I don't have any UK television data at the moment, so no UK news for the moment.

    -Tomorrow morning in Germany, Sat.1 will be repeating DS9's 'Metamorphosen' (The Alternate) at 01:50 CET. At 15:00 tomorrow, they'll be showing Voyager's 'Das andere Ego,' followed an hour later by 'Der Wille.'

    Trek BBS Today
    Christian (3:37 pm CST)
    After a day's leave of absence, 'Trek BBS Today' returns again with the following extremely interesting discussions currently taking place at the Trek BBS:

    -How do you like Pocket Book's Double Helix novel series?

    -Is it possible to talk while being transported?

    -What are the 'City on the Edge of Forever' episodes on the other three Trek series?

    Find more at the Trek BBS!

    Hello World!
    Christian (3:36 pm CST)
    For some reason the temperature seems to have made an incredible jump here since yesterday. Fortunately the room I'm currently in is located on the North side of the building - otherwise I would really have fainted while doing this update.

    Link of the Day: Even More Justice (Thanks to Andrew Becker for the link!)

    Thursday July 29, 1999
    Unsung Heroes: Nyota Uhura
    Christian (3:03 pm CST)
    Julia Houston at Star Trek Fans has written a new article, the first in a series of 'Unsung Heroes' articles:

    Hello there, and welcome to the first in what I'm planning as a series of articles on the "Unsung Heroes" of Star Trek. This idea comes from a recent winner of my Insane Trivia contest, who wanted to see minor characters featured in their own articles.

    Nyota Uhura (her first name isn't 100% canon and means "star" in Swahili, her last name means "freedom") served as a lieutenant aboard the Enterprise, a lieutenant-commander about the Enterprise-A, and was last seen with a commander's rank. Her specialty is communications, and although TOS usually gave her nothing more to do than say "Hailing frequencies open, sir," she sometimes got out her Starfleet-issue toolbox and fixed up the wires and lights of her communications board.

    It's difficult to know what to think of Uhura now, looking back on TOS from a perspective of over thirty years. If she were a character on television today, the show wouldn't get boycotted, but it would hardly be praised for furthering female roles. In its own time, however, there's no question that it was revolutionary.

    The full article, can be found here.

    'Birth of the Federation' Patch
    Christian (3:02 pm CST)
    Microprose has just released the official version 1.02 patch for 'Birth of the Federation,' their new turn-based strategy game. The patch fixes several bugs (such as the dreaded memory leak) and adds a few welcome new features (including the ability to 'spawn' 'Birth of the Federation' for multiplayer games). You can find the patches (both the English and the German versions) here.

    Wolfe Heads Sorbo/Roddenberry Series
    Christian (3:02 pm CST)
    As you may recall, two weeks ago we (thanks to 'Creep') reported that a former Star Trek writer would be joining the new series based on a Gene Roddenberry concept, starring Kevin 'Hercules' Sorbo. Now, TrekWeb is confirming our report, together with some extra info:

    TrekWeb has learned that former Deep Space Nine writer Robert Hewitt Wolfe is developing one of the two Gene Roddenberry series proposals, headed up by Majel Roddenberry, for Tribune Entertainment. The show is starship-based and tentatively titled "Gene Roddenberry's Phoenix Rising." Word is that development has been well-received by Tribune, so it looks like this show could be on the air next fall as anticipated.

    Thanks go out to Gustavo Leao for pointing me to this.

    New Sev Trek Competition
    Christian (3:01 pm CST)
    John Cook at Sev Trek has uploaded a new edition of his Write Your Own Sev Trek competition:

    Sev Trek header
    Write Your Own Sev Trek Competition - cartoon spoofs of Star Trek. Copyright 1999 by John Cook.

    Take a look at what this week's competition is about:

    Squatty the miracle worker! Here is another "reverse competition" - the punchline is written. YOU have to write Quirk's statement that leads to Squatty's punchline!

    Submit your punchlines here.

    New UPN Promo VP
    Christian (3:01 pm CST)
    UPN, the struggling network which is currently airing 'Star Trek: Voyager,' has announced that the network has a new Vice President in charge of On-Air Promotion: Sarah Pierce:

    ``Sarah has been a crucial part of UPN's promo unit for years, and I'm pleased and proud that she is remaining on board as we take the network to the next level; she's the best,'' said Calnan. ``The direction we've embarked upon offers a lot of creative opportunity in on-air, and Geoff has brought a great enthusiasm and attitude to the department,'' said Pierce.

    Pierce, who has been with the network since 1995, is responsible for creating and producing on-air promotional spots for all UPN primetime programming. During her tenure at the network, she has developed and implemented promotional campaigns for ``Star Trek: Voyager,'' ``Moesha,'' ``7 Days'' and ``Malcolm & Eddie.''

    In this new position, she is presumably in charge of all Voyager promos created. Find more in the full press release.

    Over-'Night' Ratings
    Christian (3:00 pm CST)
    Ultimate TV has posted the overnight ratings for yesterday's Voyager repeat of 'Night,' as part of their Wednesday ratings report. Voyager managed to get a 2.9 rating / 5 share, which is one tenth of a ratings point up from last week. On Tuesday, 'Moesha' managed to score a 3.6/7, which marks the third week in a row the series has beaten Voyager.

    Patrick Stewart Chat
    Christian (3:00 pm CST)
    Tonight at 06:30pm Pacific Time, Patrick Stewart (Jean-Luc Picard) will be attending a live chat at the official Continuum. You can already submit questions here, or learn how to participate here.

    Trek Actor In Nuremberg Series
    Christian (3:00 pm CST)
    According to a news item on Yahoo, cable channel TNT is currently producing a four-hour miniseries entitled 'Nuremberg,' which will deal with the trial against Nazi war criminals after the Second World War. One of the actors taking part in the miniseries is Christopher Plummer, whom Star Trek fans will remember from his role as General Chang in 'Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country' and the upcoming 'Klingon Academy' game. This isn't the first time a Trek star has taken part in a 'Nuremberg' production - in 1961, William Shatner (James T. Kirk) starred in the movie 'Judgment at Nuremberg.'

    Download Star Trek Music
    Christian (2:59 pm CST)
    A new press release from EMusic.com mentions that, as of now, it is possible to download and purchase songs and albums in the MP3 format from classic TV series such as 'Star Trek.' This is possible due to a special arrangement with GNP Crescendo, the official publisher of the Star Trek soundtracks. Find more about this in the full press release.

    Happy Birthday
    Christian (2:59 pm CST)
    Today is the 27th birthday of Wil Wheaton, admired by millions for his portrayal of the popular TNG character Wesley Crusher.

    Hello World!
    Christian (2:59 pm CST)
    No Trek BBS Today or Today On TV today - I'm kinda pressed for time at the moment.

    Link of the Day: There is still some justice in this world.