What if… the 25th Anniversary of DOCTOR WHO was celebrated with a multi-Doctor story?

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Art by Matthew Purchase [ http://cyberdevil.webs.com/ ]

 

Multi-Doctor stories are fun. I love em.

We had The Three Doctors in 1972, close enough to the 10th Anniversary; The Five Doctors for the 20th; Dimensions in Time (For what it is I like it) for the 30th; Big Finish gave us Zagreus for the 40th Anniversary, The Light at the End for the 50th and shortly after on TV there was The Day of the Doctor.

In between we’ve had The Two Doctors, The Sirens of Time, The Lost Dimension and many more gems. The Eight Doctors novel was released close enough to the 35th  Anniversary

After the Day of the Doctor, for a series of art pieces, fan Colin Brockhurst reimagined that story as if it were made for the 5th Anniversary in 1968 (which was around the time The Invasion aired, the first UNIT story featuring the return of Lethbridge-Stewart against the Cybermen). The Day of Dr Who was a fake Radio Times poster and listing, as well as ‘telesnaps’ from the supposed lost story! Hartnell’s Doctor meets Queen Elizabeth, and then gets drawn into an adventure with the shape-shifting Chameleons, alongside Troughton and the forgotten War Doctor (Peter Cushing from the 1960s Dalek movies).

I started thinking about what a 15th Anniversary version would have been, with Tom Baker and Jon Pertwee teaming with the lost Doctor, Trevor Martin (from the 1974 West End play Seven Keys To Doomsday).

But a few weeks ago on twitter, pictures from the Doctor Who 15th Anniversary Party surfaced. A well-known writer pondered what The Four Doctors may have been like as the conclusion to the Key To Time season, with the White Guardian summoning the first three Doctors to help Tom find the last segment of the Key To Time. Will Brooks and Si Hodges, two prolific fan photoshoppers imagined what scenes from that story may have looked like, including Geoffrey Bayldon as a recast First Doctor and the Third Doctor teaming with the Fourth Doctor, Romana and K9. I never knew how much I wanted it until I saw it!

With both in mind, and me being me, I’d naturally go and ask what the 25th Anniversary would have been like as a multi Doc? Silver Nemesis was the BBC’s official anniversary story however Remembrance of the Daleks has all the hallmarks for an anniversary story – Davros and the Daleks, Coal Hill, Totter’s Lane, a Time Lord device, time travel, direct follow up to the very first episode and even a prototypical Brigadier and UNIT setup.

1988 - Remembrance of the Daleks

SOURCE: librarian-bot.deviantart.com

 

Obviously as a multi Doctor story the structure would be very different but the basic story would be the same – two factions of Daleks descend on Shoreditch 1963 in search of the Hand of Omega, there’s a Dalek mothership above Earth and they have basic Time Travel technology. Let’s use the title The Six Doctors since The Four Doctors has been used various times now. William Hartnell, Patrick Troughton (and Richard Hurndall) had unfortunately died since 1988 and presumably Tom Baker would have still refused to take part.

Let’s say Geoffrey Bayldon was rehired to play the First Doctor after The Four Doctors, and was unavailable for The Five Doctors, hence why Richard Hurndall appeared. Robert Holmes’ unmade Six Doctors involved an android First Doctor created by the Cybermen. Here, we would follow up Resurrection of the Daleks in two ways – (1) Doctors 3 and 6-7 would be brought into the story by their TARDISes being dragged through the Dalek Time Corridor and (2) the Daleks would have successfully created a Clone First Doctor to infiltrate the High Council on Gallifrey. We’d have the Third, Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Doctors facing the Daleks, the First [Hartnell] Doctor in flashbacks from An Unearthly Child and the Renegade Daleks using the Clone [Bayldon] Doctor.

So we have:

  1. Sylvester McCoy
  2. Jon Pertwee
  3. Peter Davison
  4. Colin Baker
  5. William Hartnell (archive footage)
  6. Geoffrey Bayldon

 

SYLVESTER McCOY, COLIN BAKER, PETER DAVISON and JON PERTWEE

with GEOFFREY BAYLDON and WILLIAM HARTNELL in

THE SIX DOCTORS

By Ben Aaronovitch

The Doctor takes his new friend Ace back to Totters Lane 1963, where he has unfinished business. His first incarnation left behind the Hand of Omega, a powerful piece of Time Lord technology. Unfortunately it has caught the attention of two warring factions of Daleks!

The Daleks have opened a time corridor, and three TARDISes are caught up in it – all of which belong to the Doctor. Two of the Doctors help their seventh incarnation against the Daleks while the other is stuck ever so slightly further in the past.

Is the first Doctor who he seems? Can the local military help protect the Hand of Omega? And what secrets lie beneath the Coal Hill School?

The supporting cast of Remembrance of the Daleks was so strong it got a Big Finish audio spin-off, Counter-Measures. However for the Doctors they may have to take a back seat. cm01_slipcase_1417sq_cover_large.jpg

You could spread the Doctors out to give them roles (and companions):

  • The Seventh Doctor and Ace with the Counter-Measures team, maybe they find the Sixth Doctor acting as scientific advisor? The two Doctors are forced to work together
  • The Fifth Doctor and Peri dragged back to a dark Shoreditch night where they meet who they think is the First Doctor, but in fact he’s a clone!
  • The Third Doctor and Jo trapped on the Dalek mothership (then Pertwee could enjoy a scene or two with Davros!)

Naturally in the fourth and final episode the Third, Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Doctors would all team up against the Daleks before going their separate ways.

 

Lastly, I’d imagine the structure of Season 25 being slightly different. You’d want The Six Doctors to air on the anniversary itself. So you’d have:

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Silver Nemesis [beginning still with a classic element, just like Season 24 had the Rani and Season 26 brought back the Brigadier and UNIT] – 15-19 October 1988

The Happiness Patrol – 26 0ctober-9 November 1988

The Six Doctors – 16 November-7 December 1988

The Greatest Show in the Galaxy – 14 December 1988-4 January 1988

 

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POWER RANGERS HEXAGON: Wrath of Zedd [pilot] Fan Editor’s Notes

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Around 2003, after the Forever Red 10th Anniversary Special of Power Rangers Wild Force, writer Amit Bhaumik began work on what would have been Power Rangers’ 11th season, an adaptation of the Hurricaneger Sentai series. The ambitious plan was to continue from Forever Red and wrap up storylines from the first decade of the franchise.

Hexagon was to have seen two factions of Rangers against each other, one led by Tommy Oliver and run by the government, the other by Jason Lee Scott. Several villains who survived Zordon’s Energy Wave would have appeared, alongside other familiar characters. The whole thing was very ambitious, perhaps too ambitious. Production of Power Rangers left Los Angeles and we got Ninja Storm.

Now I’m a born-again Power Rangers fan. I watch until around Lightspeed Rescue but have in the last few years returned, catching up on past seasons like Time Force and Dino Thunder, both of which have become fast favourites. Nostalgia for the 90s has been brewing over the past five years, and Saban has been able to take advantage of it by producing a movie with Lionsgate and a very successful comic run with BOOM! Studios.

I’ve been wondering what if there was a ‘grown up’ PG-13 Power Rangers series like Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD and DC’s Arrow and Legends of Tomorrow? Now around 2013 there was an unfinished high-quality fan film announced called MMPR. Thousands were raised for their Kickstarter but it turned out to be a scam, despite several scenes being released on YouTube. One of these scenes showed the return of Lord Zedd. Also, Jason David Frank reprised Tommy Oliver in two ‘Super Power Beat Down’ shorts. The question I started to ask was ‘Could I use these with other footage to make a full episode?’

The footage from MMPR and Beat Down lasted around 10 minutes so I needed more. There was a Sentai movie called The Great Dinosaur Battle which teamed the Morphin, Dino Thunder and Dino Charge Rangers, so I used that, plus the animated into to the Super Legends videogame showed Lord Zedd’s return and plucking Goldar out of time. I consciously didn’t want to use footage from the TV show although a few clips are in there. A sequence from The Order is used too.

Lastly, to beef things up a bit, I found an edited clip of Tommy & Kimberley using footage from JDF’s ‘Fall Guy’ movie. It showed the two on the phone talking about Jason’s death, prompting a devastating plot twist! Also the cliffhanger ending shows Zordon of Eltar’s resurrection.

 

Here’s a breakdown:

The Future Omega Ranger intercepts Lord Zedd as he tries to steal the Time Crystal. Zedd uses it to travel back to Rita’s time and recruit Goldar to help him defeat the Rangers once and for all.

In Angel Grove, General Collins orders the activation of PROJECT RANGER, as they need Zordon and the Power Rangers. He later stops a guy from revealing the secrets of Angel Grove, but the message gets out. Meanwhile in Japan, Tommy fights an evil menace called Scorpion as the White Ranger, before fighting one of Zedd’s minions, Ryu, as the Green Ranger. The Silver Guardians (from Power Rangers Time Force) are attacked by a woman called Clare, who is trying to stop Collins.

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Meanwhile, Adam Park confronts Jason Lee Scott, who he blames for losing his eye during a battle with Thrax. In Downtown Angel Grove, Police Detective Jonathan Stanton receives an anonymous tip that the military group, The Silver Guardians, are using illegal tactics to keep their plans for a take-over. Stanton comes head to head with two twins, Sara and Jaimie, who manage to get hold of a pen drive with secrets.

As Lord Zedd is preparing his return, Jason returns to being the Red Ranger despite his earlier difficulties with Adam. He joins Clare, Sara, Jaimie and Adam, all suited for battle, as well as the Dino Thunder and Dino Charge Rangers to battle Goldar and his army. Goldar grows to an impossible height which prompts the return of the Megazord. After Goldar’s defeat, the mystical creature Vados comes to Earth, so the three teams all team up to fight him. In the process however, Jason falls to the ground. As the remaining Rangers defeat Vados, Jason’s motionless bodies lie on the ground.

Later, Bulk & Spike say goodbye as Skull arrives in a limousine to pick up his son. Then Skull tells Bulk to be sure to visit him sometime.

 Tommy calls Kimberley who assures him he can’t be blamed for Jason’s death, and the danger’s part of the job. In the Command Center a Professor and his robotic assistant successfully bring back an ancient wise being. It’s Zordon.

 

Some plot threads aren’t solved on purpose because this is meant to be the pilot to a series. Originally I wanted the series title to be ‘Power Rangers’, but there are enough similarities to Amit’s idea to justify the ‘Hexagon’ title, which has only previously been brought to life in fan trailers and opening credits.

Also, this is clearly not a replacement for Ninja Storm. In fact not a frame of footage from that series is used! I see this as representing ideas from three aborted ideas – MMPR, Hexagon and the Bat in the Sun Green Ranger spin-off. I admit that with Tommy, Kim, Jason, Adam, the Megazord, Zordon, Bulk & Skull, Zedd, Goldar and the Putties this is mostly a ’20 Years Later’ Mighty Morphin story, however there are references and elements from other series.

Like real Power Rangers this edit uses Sentai footage, however the Power Rangers all look as they did in 1993. Ideally they would have been wearing these:

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Like Hexagon, there is a mix of old and new Rangers thanks to MMPR. Also, in the titles there is a clip from power/rangers of Rita, reprised by Carla Perez. In my mind Rita doesn’t actually return, she is from a nightmare sequence.

 

In my headcanon this takes place between Dino Supercharge (OK it’s meant to be a parallel universe, but hey?) and Ninja Steel. This is pretty much an antedote to the norm of Power Rangers since the late 90s as it is not a ‘clean slate’.

The Many Ways to Bring Back KIRK PRIME

 

 

 

In 1994 Star Trek Generations was released, and Captain Kirk was dead. Stone dead. Bereft of life, he ceased to be. He was singing ‘The Tambourine Man’ to the choir invisible.

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Many were not happy, it was a meaningless death for a legendary screen character who had been around for nearly 30 years. William Shatner himself followed the movie up with a series of EIGHT books set in the 24th Century, co-written by Judith & Garfield Reeves-Stevens. In them, Kirk was revived by a Romulan-Borg Alliance to kill Picard; returned to the Mirror Universe; went on vacation to Bajor with Captain Picard (yes, really); then finally got back to captaining a Starship with Spock, McCoy & Scotty by his side.

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Around 2004-05, when Enterprise was prepping for its fourth and final season, there were rumours that William Shatner would be appearing. Judiith & Garfield Reeves-Stevens pitched a story in which Shatner would appear as Mirror Kirk:

“The idea was that the Tantalus field was not a disintegrator, it was a humane way of dealing with prisoners, by sending them back in time to a sealed penal colony. Enterprise (NX-01) comes upon the colony – and Tiberius [mirror-Kirk] is there. Tiberius thinks, ‘Finally, a ship with a transporter – I can get back to my own universe, my own time.’ He basically goes on the NX-01, gets to the transporter, sets it to go back to the mirror universe – the mirror universe doesn’t exist.” “It hasn’t been created yet,” Judith Reeves-Stevens added. Garfield continued, “So Tiberius and Archer work together to figure out where the division point is between the universes, what point that one split off into the other. And as it turns out, Tiberius and Archer together are responsible for the creation of the mirror universe.”

A second idea, devised by Mike Sussman, ‘involved Shatner playing Enterprise’s Chef, who Daniels would bring into the future to preserve the timeline by successfully posing as James T. Kirk during an important event in history.’

William Shatner - Iron Chef USA

[SOURCE:

http://memory-alpha.wikia.com/wiki/Undeveloped_Star_Trek:_Enterprise_episodes]

I personally preferred the second idea, we’d have technically an unseen adventure where Shatner would be playing [Chef as] Kirk. Unfortunately Shatner couldn’t agree with a fee Paramount was offering, and UPN cancelled the show.

Wanting to see William Shatner back as Kirk in the 24th Century, following the box office disaster that was Star Trek: Nemesis, a group of fans put together this live action-hybrid trailer, showing Kirk and gang in 24th Century uniforms aboard a refitted Enterprise-A, which canonically was never destroyed. I love it, it paints a new chapter for Kirk and Spock, and if you take away the captions this is a full story with a beginning, middle and optimistic end:

Next, CBS acquired the rights to Star Trek but Paramount retained the rights to make movies, and JJ Abrams started to develop a concept which would take the franchise back to the original series. There were hot rumours that William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy were heavily involved and had to give approval for the recasting of their characters.  Nimoy appeared but Shatner didn’t. Roberto Orci had written a hologram-monologue scene for Shatner which was ultimately unfilmed:

ALTERNATE SCENE B

SPOCK PRIME
Then I ask that you do yourself a
favor… put away logic, and do what
feels right. The world you’ve inherited
lives in the shadow of incalculable
devastation… but there’s no reason you
must face it alone.

And from around his neck, he removes the PENDANT that
until now, we’ve only caught glimpses of. Places it on
the table beside his younger self. The feeling in his
eyes is profound…

SPOCK PRIME (CONT’D)
This was a gift to me. Representing…
a dream. One we were unable to fulfill.
(softly)
The way you can now.

And moves to the door. Stops. Offers the VULCAN SALUTE:

SPOCK PRIME (CONT’D)
As my customary farewell would appear
oddly self serving, I will simply say…
good luck.

Their eyes hold. Spock turns, disappearing into the
corridor. Young Spock stares at the empty doorway a
beat, his mind a jumble of thoughts. Looks to the
pendant… and realizes it’s a HOLO-EMITTER. After
considering a beat, he hits an activation button and a
MOVING HOLOGRAPHIC MESSAGE materializes before him:

CAPTAIN JAMES T. KIRK. WILLIAM SHATNER. As always,
brash, wry, confident — and SINGING:

KIRK/ SHATNER
Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to
you…
(stops, grins)
I know I know, it’s illogical to
celebrate something you had nothing to do
with, but I haven’t had the chance to
congratulate you on your appointment to
the ambassadorship so I thought I’d seize
the occasion… Bravo, Spock — they tell
me your first mission may take you away
for awhile, so I’ll be the first to wish
you luck… and to say…
(beat, emotional)
I miss you, old friend.

… and we’re PUSHING IN on Young Spock, taking in the
image of Kirk’s future self, the message, but above all —
the clear, unquestionable friendship these two men had…

INT. CORRIDOR – CONTINUOUS

As Spock Prime walks off down the corridor, he passes
right by a man conferring with a nurse — the man pauses,
turns… it’s SAREK. Suddenly overcome by a feeling that
the stranger who’s just passed him is… oddly familiar.

KIRK/SHATNER (V.O.)
I suppose I’d always imagined us…
outgrowing Starfleet together. Watching
life swing us into our Emeritus years…

INT. STARBASE ONE – HANGAR – ETERNAL NIGHT

MUSIC BUILDING — glass walls reveal THE ENTERPRISE at
dock, UTILITY CRAFTS floating around it, repairing.
Standing at attention in rows, THE ENTERPRISE CREW —
over four hundred of them wearing DRESS UNIFORMS — TRACK
DOWN the faces, all proud:

KIRK/SHATNER (V.O.)
I look around at the new cadets now and
can’t help thinking… has it really been
so long? Wasn’t it only yesterday we
stepped onto the Enterprise as boys?
That I had to prove to the crew I
deserved command… and their respect?

And we STOP ON YOUNG KIRK. Composed, focused, proud. A
man. And to every fan’s delight, finally wearing his
YELLOW SHIRT
. The FEDERATION COMMANDANT stands at a
podium:

COMMANDANT
This assembly calls Captain James
Tiberius Kirk…

Kirk breaks from formation, pivots, marches down the
hangar — past UHURA… SULU… CHEKOV… SCOTTY. All
Beaming. Notably absent, is Spock. Kirk ascends the
stairs, snaps to attention:

COMMANDANT (CONT’D)
Your inspirational valor and supreme
dedication to your comrades are in
keeping with the highest traditions of
service and reflect utmost credit to
yourself, your crew, and the Federation.
By Starfleet Order 28455, you are hereby
directed to report to Commanding Officer,
USS Enterprise, for duty as his relief.

Kirk turns. Walks to… PIKE. In a wheelchair now,
wearing an ADMIRAL’S UNIFORM. Overnight, his hair’s
turned totally grey — but despite his trauma, his
pride’s overwhelming. They SALUTE each other:

KIRK
I relieve you, Sir.

PIKE
… I am relieved.

He opens a BOX in his lap — glorious in repose, a MEDAL:

PIKE (CONT’D)
And as Fleet Admiral, for your… unique
solution to the Kobayashi Maru, it’s my
honor to award you with a commendation
for original thinking.

Pike containing a smirk, pins the medal to Kirk’s
chest…

PIKE (CONT’D)
(a touch choked)
Congratulations, Captain.

KIRK
Thank you, Sir.

Kirk turns to the crowd. Eyes shining. WILD APPLAUSE.
OUR MUSIC SOARS. Bones leans in to Sulu, rolling his
eyes:

BONES
… Same ship, different day.

As Kirk rejoins his crew for hugs and congratulations, we
go to the BACK of the hangar… SPOCK PRIME. Watching.
Moved beyond words. He turns and leaves them to it… as
he goes…

KIRK/SHATNER (V.O.)
I know what you’d say — ‘It’s their turn
now, Jim…’ And of course you’re
right… but it got me thinking:

INT. STARFLEET HOSPITAL – EARTH – DAY

Our montage comes full circle as we END on Kirk’s
transmission:

KIRK/SHATNER
Who’s to say we can’t go one more round?
By the last tally, only twenty five
percent of the galaxy’s been chartered…
I’d call that negligent. Criminal even —
an invitation. You once said being a
starship captain was my first, best
destiny… if that’s true, then yours is
to be by my side. If there’s any true
logic to the universe… we’ll end up on
that bridge again someday.

Stops, grins. Because this is the part he needs to say
most…

KIRK/SHATNER
Admit it, Spock. For people like us, the
journey itself… is home.

Young Spock’s face. Lost in feelings that flood through
him.

[SOURCE: https://trekmovie.com/2009/11/23/read-the-star-trek-2009-scene-written-for-william-shatner/]

Orci was planning to co-write and direct a third Star Trek movie. In it, the Federation, The Vulcans and a new race were racing to get their hands on a time travel device, the Vulcans wanted to get their hands on a time travel device. In the process, Shatner and Nimoy would have appeared an older Pine & Quinto, unfortunately a new script was written (which tbf was a movie I greatly enjoyed!) and Nimoy died in 2015, before these scenes could be shot: the Prime Timeline would have been restored, ending the trilogy, with the return of Kirk Prime.

 

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photomanip by gazomg from my idea, uniform design by Richard A Griffith

Yes they’re meant to be older Kelvin Kirk & Spock, not older Prime, but I love this image.

 

It’s like a curse! Yes the Kirk character was killed off, but the conversation always comes around. Of the surviving original cast, Nimoy made two Star Trek movies in 2009 and 2013, Takei, Koenig and Nichols have participated in fan films, but William Shatner has only appeared in a DirecTV commercial and Oscars sketch.

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Over the last 10 years online Star Trek fan films were very prominent I had an idea that Star Trek New Voyages or Continues could do a take on ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’, where Kirk in the Nexus would be shown by his younger self a guided tour of his life, reflecting on the decisions he made. But Shatner had this to say about Continues, apparently over the use of his image in their promo material:

He’s already talking about appearing on Discovery! But how?! It’s set 10 years before TOS. Note that’s not the only Star Trek there’s going to be now, there’s talks CBS want to do more, and it was nearly an all-eras anthology.

He could play Admiral Tiberius Kirk, Kirk’s grandfather, or they could resurrect the time travelling Mirror Kirk idea.

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If CBS do a future show, Kirk could be shown in flashback, as a hologram or this guy could snap his fingers:

320x240

 The Kelvin Timeline movies are also rumoured to be going forward with another movie, apparanly in a time travel plot involving Chris Hemsworth as George Kirk, so maybe the Old Kirk plot can return here? Or they could do a take on the ‘Deadly Years’ episode?

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My favourite alternative to all of these would be an appearance on FOX’s The Orville. Have him as Captain Jase C Burke, flagship Captain on his last mission, just about to retire. A lauded hero who the ladies swoon for. Taking the Mick out of Shatner’s image but not too much and a respectful homage. Ed is skeptical but ends up respecting Burke.

Maybe by the end of the episode Burke finds a new purpose in life, so effectively a better finale than Generations.

Kirk in all but name.

DQPtrBAVwAEgi6T

In any case, William Shatner is 86 now, so if they are going to do this hopefully it will be sooner rather than later!?

STAR TREK: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST – Fan Editor’s Notes

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Poster art by pzns.deviantart.com

Yesterday’s Enterprise was the 15th episode of the 3rd season of Star Trek: The Next Generation. It concerned the Enterprise-C  going 22 years into the future via a temporal rift, changing the timeline so the Federation was at war with the Klingons. It is often hailed as one of the best Star Trek episodes ever made, and some even say, including a member of the then-production staff, it should have been done as a movie. Roberto Orci, who co-wrote the 2009 movie, cited Yesterday’s Enterprise as an influence.

 

In 1994, after the final season of TNG, Star Trek Generations was released. This movie saw the final journey of the Enterprise-D, as well as the death of James T Kirk. Many hated the way Kirk’s character met his demise, and call it a ‘glorified TNG episode’.

 

A few years ago I found this fan trailer on YouTube

 

 

 

This fan trailer combines the stories of Yesterday’s Enterprise and Generations. replacing the rather unremarkable Captain Garrett with Captain Kirk. I wondered if this could be turned into a full story (when I get an idea in my head I like it sticks!!), so I put Yesterday’s Enterprise on the edit suite and cut Garrett out.

 

The result is a 72 minute movie which is essentially an expanded version of the episode, but with the addition of characters from TOS to give them a more epic, heroic finale. And I think it works.

 

Here are the episodes and movies I took footage from:

  • TNG episode: The Big Goodbye (1988) Entering and leaving the holodeck
  • TNG episode: Yesterday’s Enterprise (1990)
  • TOS movie: The Undiscovered Country (1991)
  • TNG episode: Unification (1991)
  • TNG episode: Relics (1992)
  • TNG movie: Generations (1994)
  • DS9 episode: Shatttered Mirror (1996)
  • TOS videogame: Starfleet Academy (1997)

 

Another major source of inspiration for this project is the unfinished fan film Star Trek: Das Vermachtnis [The Legacy], as featured in the 2003 documentary Trekkies 2 and German media.

 

stard_25TNG2

 

My thinking:

  • The opening sequence is the same as Generations, with references to the ship being Enterprise-B removed. Instead of being caught up in the Nexus, the Enterprise-C is caught up in a temporal rift. We don’t see Kirk being taken. This is the ‘magic of editing’ – you think you know where a scene is going but just a few cuts can change the situation dramatically.
  • We cut to the opening of Yesterday’s Enterprise. The timeline is changed and the -D meets the -C. An away team beams over and finds Lt Castillo, who’s love story with Tasha is retained, Soran is also found.
  • The reason Soran’s plot to destroy the star is retained is to give Kirk and Picard more joint screentime.
  • Guinan’s role is ever-prominent as she has ‘feelings’ about the timeline, Tasha being alive and she knew Soran.
  • In sickbay, Picard meets Kirk and tells him he’s aboard the Enterprise-D. Like the trailer, this uses footage from ST6.
  • This Kirk is grizzled an worn out. His arc in the film is that he doesn’t want to command the Enterprise-C following Harriman’s death  so Picard has to convince him.
  • This is one of several scenes showing Kirk on the Enterprise-D, which never officially happened.
  • Star Trek VI is the fan editor’s favourite out of the first 6, yes over II! Also, the aesthetic and ages of the characters fits well – the producers used several TNG sets such as the sickbay, engineering, transporter room and crew quarters in the movie.
  •  We see Soran on the Klingon bridge, showing the enemy absent from YE.
  • Scenes of Kirk and Picard in the Nexus are used, however the context is changed so they do in fact take place on the holodeck. This is where Kirk is convinced to return to active duty one last time.
  • A major diversion is that Picard & Data visit Romulus to find Spock. Despite a friend’s advice to remove it due to overload (it has been trimmed down) this has been kept. Two reasons: (1) Spock was originally going to appear in Generations alongside Kirk but Nimoy declined. and (2) ever since 2006/07 there were rumours that Shatner & Nimoy would appear on screen together one last time. Unfortunately the latter died in 2015, but ‘Ambassador Spock’ lives on in the fan edit world. The fan editor felt that if this was going to be a better Shatner-Kirk finale then Spock should be there.
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  • Kirk, Spock, Scotty, Uhura and Chekov are the 5 out of 7 TOS regulars that appear, though Bones and Sulu are mentioned. Kirk, Scotty, Chekov and newly Uhura (via ST6 footage) are established as being aboard the Enterprise-C. Scotty & Geordi fixing the ship from the TNG episode Relics is used (although this is the Enterprise-C here, not the Jenolan!), as are Kirk & Chekov via the 1997 video game Starfleet Academy.  Starfleet Academy was incidentally the last time Shatner officially played Kirk in a full-length production, he did cameo in the role for a DirecTV commercial and a sketch for the 2013 Oscars.
  • Picard & Data finding Spock in his role as Ambassador is from the TNG episode Unification. This separate comeback plot is here simply to give Spock a more interesting  role, being the second-to-main-character in TOS and one of America’s most iconic characters of all time. The fan editor believes that Unification & Relics on their own are weak stories, however the footage is served well here.
  • Kirk & Spock are given an emotional reunion scene before the final battle.
  • Kirk & Picard confronting Soran on Veridian III is included, destroying the weapon and blowing up Soran, however again the ‘magic of editing’ allows Kirk to survive this for the true finale.
  • The true finale is the Enterprise-D fighting Klingons while the Enterprise-C attempts to go through the rift. This is the only time on screen we saw two Enterprises working together.
  • Again,we see action on the Klingon bridges. Lursa & B’Tor feature earlier in the film, and are killed off here. Also, after their deaths we cut to another ship commanded by Chancellor Worf – this is deliberate as minutes later we see the ‘real’ Lt Worf on the Enterprise-D bridge.
  • The Cardassian Slave on Worf’s ship is played by Andrew Robinson – Garak on Deep Space Nine.
  • Captain Kirk’s is last scene is on the bridge of the Enterprise-C simply giving the order to ‘FIRE!’
  • Incidentally this is very similar to Danny’s Doctor Who fanedit ‘The Rise of Evil’ in that it opens in the Prime universe, slips into an alternate one then the Prime Timeline is restored.

 

Even without the Alternate Timeline elements the continuity of this is ambiguous – the opening seems to be TNG Season 3 despite this film essentially being a replacement for ST7; the Enterprise-C comes from 22 Years Earlier; plus what happened to the TOS characters? Several are seen alive and well in the TNG era. Also the Enterprise-D in the end is in tact.

 

But does that matter, they are all ‘imaginary tales’ after all…

DOCTOR WHO: TWICE UPON A TIME – Thoughts, feelings and predictions

– Great trailer, it looks like both the Doctors get a fair chunk of action together just as Matt, David and Sir John did in the 50th
– Speaking of the 50th, the trailer gives me a very Day of the Doctor vibe with throwbacks to the past. Was that a Chumbley? a CyberTomb?
– Also there is of course a rumour that the two Doctors will be saving Gallifrey, thus this will be more like The Day of the Doctor (part 2) as well as The Tenth Planet (Episode Five)
– i was surprised by the scene recreation from The Tenth Planet. The morph was breathtaking. Are they remaking Episode 4? I’d be surprised as the whole story has DVD release, but I’d welcome it.
– It looks like it’s not a straight up story set between going to the TARDIS then letting Ben and Polly in from the freezing cold. i can’t wait to see how that plays out.
– Watching Bradley in this feels like a great follow on to his appearance in AAISAT, even though the performance will be different. He’s played Hartnell playing the Doctor in iconic recreations spanning his whole era.
– The Captain – is he Sir Alistair’s grandfather or father? Or maybe a relative of one of the First Doctor’s companions? Or the War Lord? More likely the former
– Bill – does Heather make her human again? I hope so personally so she can go back home and live her life again
– There has been talk of more cameos over the past few months -Clara, Nardole, The Eleventh Doctor, Daleks, Susan. The latter is the one I am really hoping for.

REVIEW: BAT OUT OF HELL [preview] 18th February 2017 – Opera House Manchester UK

 

I am not a member of the press so I’m not subjected to embargo, nor am I academic though I went to uni – I’ve been a fan of Bat Out of Hell since around 2002 – we were in the car and they played the full version of the title track, thus prompting my mum to get the album out and play it – the songs, particularly Paradise, I had heard nothing like before. I saw Meat Loaf at Hyde Park that Summer, then a year later on the Couldn’t Have Said It Better tour.

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Now I am something of enigma. I wouldn’t call myself a rock fan – I don’t have loads of bands; Linkin Park, Metallica, Kiss etc on my tablet; I’m more into musical theatre. I think that’s what drew me to Meat Loaf and of course Steinman, the bombastic theatricality of the music. There’s no coincidence however, for 50 years this was all written for musical theatre. The whole damn lot.

 

If you listen to Steinman’s other work – Bonnie Tyler, Pandora’s Box, Air Supply etc. listen to the lyrics and instrumental there are recurring themes and phrases. This is completely deliberate, but as a Steinfan I love the continuity. Steinman’s work; which includes No 1 songs such as Total Eclipse of the Heart, I’d Do Anything For Love, Dead Ringer For Love, Holding Out For A Hero and many more, as well as musicals such as the European hit ‘Tanz der Vampire’ (based on Roman Polanski’s 1967 film ‘The Fearless Vampire Killers’) and lyrics for ‘Whistle Down The Wind’, composed by the little-known Andrew Lloyd-Webber, you may have heard of him (In fact an ironic Lloyd-Webber/Steinman connection may be to come if the West End production moves onto one of his theatres!) Even in these collaborative projects the phrases and references trickle through – I love the continuity though, it makes Steinman’s work all a part of a massive musical tapestry.

 

Steinman’s first ever musical was 1969’s ‘The Dream Engine’. Produced at college, there were elements inspired by JM Barrie’s Peter Pan. Over the next decade Steinman would write and produce more musicals – ‘Rhinegold’ and ‘More Than You Deserve’ – on the latter project he first met Meat Loaf. Steinman however continued his desire to produce a rock n roll fantasy Pan, writing songs, some of which would appear on Meat Loaf’s 1977 album Bat Out of Hell, which would prove a great success worldwide. That same year, the Pan-based musical was workshopped in a vastly modified form, as ‘Neverland’.

 

Steinman never stopped working towards his dream show as his fame and success soared, drafting screenplays, stage plays and writing new songs which in the meanwhile would be released as chart hits. Some of these songs would appear on Bat Out of Hell II: Back Into Hell, a triumphant reunion with Meat Loaf.

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Bat Out of Hell was rumoured to open around 2009, I vividly remember reading Steinman’s blog [in 2005!] with teases of meetings with potential creative staff and scenes and songs which could be used. The teases were so tantalising. So I was waiting 12 years! But great things come to those who wait. Part of the issue was apparently finding someone to fund Steinman’s massive vision. But the world finally caught up.

 

Tickets went on sale July 2016 so I had to rally up my friends and see who wanted to go. Four of us ended up getting tickets for the second ever preview performance in Manchester, Saturday 18th February 2017. Then there was an agonising 8 month wait.

 

I’ve wanted this show forever. I even tried to write a Meat Loaf musical as a kid. I’d predicted it would become my favourite ever musical. Obviously that was a gamble, what if it was a flop? What if producers had fiddled too much with Steinman’s vision? Steinman’s work was like my musical bible (I mean that in a very Dot Cotton way), and I wanted it putting into the context of a story. I’d been waiting so long despite the excitement I was for a bit apprehensive as one could expect. What if it hadn’t lived up to expectations? Potential SPOILERS from hear onwards:

 

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The night finally came. We travelled up to Manchester, filed into the theatre then it was time. The first thing you notice is the incredible set. Massive, on more than one floor. Apparantly the biggest theatre set in the world.

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Synopsis: “Join the eternally young Strat and his wild gang, The Lost, as they roam the streets of Obsidian, a post-apocalyptic Manhattan, ruled by the wicked and tyrannical Falco. When Strat first sets eyes on Falco’s daughter, Raven, who has been locked away in the palace towers, he sets out to rescue her from her evil father’s clutches in a full throttle tale of teenage love, youthful rebellion and living the rock and roll dream.”

 

The Peter Pan influences are still very visible but a lot less obvious. The show is full of surprises. I know the songs, I know the vision, but still there were surprises. I was expecting this – Steinman is a genius! Here is the running order, with comments:

 

ACT ONE
1. No Overture – Begins with Love & Death & An American Guitar – Strat
2. All Revved Up With No Place To Go/Wasted Youth – Strat and the Lost

All Revved Up with new lyrics ad an extract from ‘Everything Louder Than Everything Else’, demoed here:

3. Who Needs The Young? – Falco & Sloane

4. Out of the Frying Pan (And Into The Fire)(Extract)/It Just Won’t Quit – Strat n co

So many of us were disappointed the full Frying Pan wasn’t in there!
5. Good Girls Go To Heaven (Bad Girls Go Everywhere) – Sloane, Zahara & Raven

6. Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad – Zahara & Jagwire

I always said this should be a duet!!
7. Paradise By The Dashboard Light – Falco & Sloane

My friend and I jumped forward in our seats and grinned when this started!! Very funny
8. Making Love Out of Nothing At All – Strat & Raven

A wildcard, wasn’t expecting this but happy to see it in there.
9. Bat Out of Hell – Strat & Raven

ACT TWO
10. In The Land of the Pig, The Butcher Is King – Falco
11. Heaven Can Wait – Raven

With amazing flying effects
12. Objects In The Rear View Mirror May Appear Closer Than They Are – Jagwire, Ledoux & Blake
13. For Crying Out Loud – Strat & Raven

14. You Took The Words Right Out of My Mouth (Hot Summer Night) – The Lost

15. I’m Not Allowed To Love – Tink [solo]
16. What Part Of My Body Hurts The Most – Falco & Sloane

Both of the above are ‘officially’ new songs but demos and performances have appeared online. Ironically the duet is now a solo and the solo is a duet. Rumour has it Meat Loaf might record  What Part of My Body for the cast album – Not Allowed To Love was originally written for the Batman musical! (Yes THAT Batman, a duet between himself and Catwoman. The director would have been Tim Burton however WB scrapped the project. I’d love to read a draft of the script!)

17. Dead Ringer For Love – Jagwire & Zahara
18. Rock n Roll Dreams Come Through – Strat
19. It’s All Coming Back To Me Now – Strat & Raven and Falco & Sloane
20. I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That) – Ensemble
21. CURTAIN CALL Bat Out of Hell (Reprise)

 

Overall this show has everything. A phenomenal young cast, led brilliantly by Andrew Polec and Christina Bennington. Some songs have new arrangements, being obvious as this is a performance by an ensemble of musical theatre actors. The script is great, a fine story with a great balance of humour and drama. It was so much more than I was expecting. The choreography was really good too, there was one song which visually emulated Steinman’s 1981 solo music video ‘Bad For Good’, a poster of the cover hung in Raven’s bedroom. Also other easter eggs included Strat wearing a tanktop with Steinman 69 on it!

 

Also you may rememebr some of Steinman’s monologue pieces from the albums – there are at least four in there (Love & Death & An American Guitar from ‘Bad For Good’, I’ve Been Dreaming Up A Storm Lately & The Invocation from Pandora’s Box: Original Sin).

 

The characters all had their own personalities and stories, Zahara in particular was interesting – working for the villainous Falco while being a member of The Lost. I say villainous but even he has his own internal torture demonstrated in What Part of My Body and All Coming Back. There are so many layers to this show.

 

Technically it is something else! Earlier on I mentioned the phenomenal set, but there were also video screens either side of the stage. For scenes in Raven’s bedroom, on an above level behind a window which was mostly shut, there was a camera person following the characters round. We had pyrotechnics, motorcycles, a drone-Bat… and a lake. An actual lake. I probably haven’t covered everything – there are so many layers!! It was a true experience.

 

So was Bat Out of Hell worth the wait? Is it my favourite musical ever? Absolutely without a shadow of a doubt. I’m not saying that because I just saw it, I know the material so well and now it has been given a whole new life in the theatre. I was wondering how on Earth huge songs like Paradise, Anything For Love, It’s All Coming Back would fit into the story.  This was only the second preview though.

 

Afterwards we came across Stephen Rinkoff, who has been Steinman’s musical partner since around 1985! i could have spoken to him all night. He did say being a preview they are looking at trimming things down ‘so people can get their trains home’. He’s worked with Jim on the musicals, albums and other projects since. Audience members were encouraged to fill out surveys saying what they liked and didn’t like about the show.

 

In my mind I’d be happy for everything to stay and things to be added!! One song I can think of is Total Eclipse of the Heart– yes I know it’s the main love duet in Tanz der Vampire (and that arrangement blows the pop record out of the water) but it’s arguably Steinman’s most famous song. From conversations I overehard it seems Dead Ringer For Love may be a casualty – Life is a Lemon was only played in the background on a radio and teh Braver Than We Are song, Speaking in Tongues, was rumoured but seemingly cut in rehearsals? It seems this preview period will be used to gradually cut and trim.

 

We also managed to meet cast members who were kind enough to stay at the stage door afterward and talk to fans for ages afterwards.

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Here are my friends and I with Andrew Polec [Strat] and Christina Bennington [Raven]. And yes he is dressed as Meat Loaf!

 

Like I said, this was the first preview. The beginning of the journey which I can’t wait to follow. The show goes to London in June. I hope to see it in July before it leaves the country and hopefully takes over the world of musical theatre. I can’t wait to see where it goes. I can’t wait to play the cast album again and again and again and disappear back in to that world (Which knowing me will happen every night for months!!).

 

And then maybe there will be school/college/university productions, community theatre productions, tours, DVD/blurays … eventually a movie!?! Hopefully a few theatre awards along the way.   And this potentially opens the albums to a whole new audience, Bat Out of Hell the album is 40 years old this year – Musical Theatre students will be singing these songs for years and years to come. For Steinman this show is full circle but for the material this is a rebirth.

 

A great example is We Will Rock You introduced me to Queen in 2003, seeing that show prompted me to buy The Platinum Collection

 

And this is only the jewel in the crown of the Steinman Renaissance which started in September 2016 with Meat Loaf’s Braver Than We Are. Next month Tyce Green’s solo album ‘Hero’ will feature all songs by Steinman, as will Karine Hannah’s Renegade Angel. Tanz der Vampire has just opened in Switzerland.

 

It’s all so exciting.

LGBT Youth Drama series pitch

Since about 2007 I’ve been trying to develop a ‘youth drama’, kind of like Skins with a dash of EastEnders’ gritty realism. It was originally set in a student house but I was advised against it and had to think of something else. A couple of years later I went to the LGBT History Month launch and it was basically a conference with teachers as well as LGBT+ students. One of the conversations with the students was about how LGBT people were represented in the media, or rather not. This got the old brain ticking. The thing about me is if I have an Idea and think it’s good I will NOT. LET. IT. GO. Ever.

I did Media for 5 years so I know about Research and Development, that happens with a LOT of shows and always have done. Also a lot of people say ‘why not just try and do a few short films’ but the ideas I’m passionate about are always series, it’s so so weird. But anywayz-

So that’s how it came about, I should tell you about the actual show!!

 

THE SETTING

This is an idea for an 6 part drama series for either the web or Television.

It centres on a group of young lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people starting their lives at college, realising who they are and their potential to do great things.

We all know our sexuality doesn’t define us – so we see these young people laugh, cry and learn as they go through college.

 

AIMS

  • TARGET AUDIENCE: Youth; not just LGBT
  • Give visibility to LGB&T people and their stories
  • to ‘educate and entertain’
  • To be realistic
  • Tell stories that otherwise are not being told

 

PHILOSIPHY

  • Proud is about showing LGBT people in the real world – setting the show somewhere like Brighton would not work
  • Being realistic, we do plan to address serious hard-hitting issues.
  • Although in ‘gay’ is a lot more accepted in the UK, we are still not quite 100% acceptance, however things are better than they were around the early Noughties, with the abolishment of Section 28 and introduction of civil partnerships.
  • Trans issues are almost NEVER talked about.
  • The ‘guy cheating on his girlfriend with a man’ has been played so many times. We will show a guy splitting up with his girlfriend, then falling in love with another man; my big challenge will be bringing many ‘unheard’ LGBT stories to the forefront.
  • A lot of ‘gay shows’ tend to be about sex which we want to get away from
  • LGBT won’t be segregated from the rest of society
  • Despite being a drama, there will be a large fun element.

 

ISSUES

I want to make it accessible to all, not just LGBT+ youth, but give visibility to a whole bunch of issues you don’t really see on television but need talking about, such as:

  • Asylum seeking
  • Discovering Grindr and stuff like that
  • Coming out
  • Bullying
  • Cyber bullying
  • Body image
  • Biphobia/gay self-loathing

Another thing I’m really keen to do is kind of present some ‘stereotypes’ and turn them on their head. Also of course LGBT+ people are people. This isn’t about segregation it’s about representation. Yes we have the legal protections now but there’s still a way to go to promote understanding and acceptance, particularly with trans issues.

 

FORMAT AND CHARACTERS

The format I’m thinking of is 6 episodes, a beginning, finale plus four episodes each focusing on a different character. Now I’m thinking of having four characters:

Ben – 17, good looking, great performer, comes across maybe as a diva but isn’t, bisexual, with learning difficulties.

Kayla – asylum seeker with a kid, 19, desperate to keep her new life in the UK

Jake – created by my friend Martin, dorky gay guy, 17, begins relationship with a priest

Sarah – I decided to have a Female To Male transgender character as you see them represented a lot less than Male To Female, in a relationship – so how will the transition effect that?

I’ve given each character a tagline for example Jake’s is simply ‘Head over heart’ and Kayla’s is ‘She wants to live in a world where she can be herself’. All these characters are beginning a journey of discovery to create themselves.

 

INSPIRATION

  • Skins
  • Shameless
  • Beautiful Thing
  • EastEnders
  • Russell T Davies
  • Rikki Beadle-Blair

 

WRITING

Now I have this idea, this vision, but how do I GET IT MADE? Now I know some of you might say ‘Get on Kickstarter or IndieGogo’ but it’s more than that. I’m a gay man. I’ve done heaps of research but I’m not bi or trans or a lesbian. I don’t know as much about those issues as some people. So I’m inviting different people with different voices to write some of the episodes and help develop the stories and make it REAL. This won’t be easy, some of the topics will get dark. But if you’re a young LGBT+ person, YOU have a story you would like to share, get involved, please get in touch. If you want confidentiality that’s fine I am sworn to secrecy.

We will deal with difficult issues and topics – the end message is hopeful but some storylines will be quite dark

  • Some will be difficult to deal with
  • Research is vital
  • The tone of the series should be naturalistic and real
  • I’d love to showcase potential stereotypes and challenge them
  • I’d love to showcase a number of different voices from the various LGBTQ + communities

 

PRODUCTION

Now production. It’s all well and good raising a load of cash but we need people behind the camera who know what they’re doing – sound, lighting, camera, organised producers. My role would be showrunner, writing scripts and helping the other writers. And I love casting, finding the actors who breathe life into the characters. Also I might want to be in it. A bit.

A major thing to do would be pitch to production companies, but it’s finding people to pitch to. If you’re a producer and you are interested, please get I touch. My aim at least is to get a pilot episode filmed and go from there. Now you may be asking “But if you just want to make a pilot why do you want writers for other episodes?” If you’re pitching a series you have to know what you’re later episodes are all about, and it will give the characters’ depth.