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First Look: Star Trek The Original Series - The Complete Season One

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Ronald Epstein, Aug 17, 2004.

  1. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    This will not be an official review. Our reviewer,
    Scott Kimball, should have the official review up
    within days.

    I did want to take this opportunity to give you
    the very first look at this set as well as my initial
    impressions of the packaging. Since I have yet to
    even pop these discs in my player I don't have any
    thoughts on the transfer, menus or otherwise. Stay
    tuned to this thread and I'll post more screenshots
    amd briefly comment on the transfers. Once
    again, I want our official reviewer to let you know
    his impressions.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Arriving in a hard plastic, yellow pill-shaped casing,
    Paramount has certainly found an inventive means to
    deliver a reincarnation of Star Trek TOS in a
    space saving design.

    The packaging boasts that these are remastered
    episodes presented with stunning 5.1 audio. I
    did check to see if the original MONO tracks were
    included, and as far as I can see, they are not. The
    two audio options are 5.1 and Dolby Surround.

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Upon removing the plastic shrinkwrap I found the
    pillbox split off its hinges. Not certain if it
    purposely ships this way, but it was very easy to
    snap the durable casing back together.

    Once you separate the pillbox you find a 1 2/4" thick
    box that contains the discs inside. The disc packaging
    pulls out and opens to a 8-panel disc housing connected
    by a single hinge. A total of 8 discs carry the
    complete 29 episodes of the first series.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    A small booklet inside unfolds to a 6-page two-sided
    episode guide that gives brief descriptions of each
    show. Noticeably missing here is original stardate
    and airdate, but you'll find that information printed
    on the face of each disc.

    The booklet also gives some brief insight into
    the changing face of the Romulans and their history.
    Inside the set are coupons for $25 off the Vegas Hilton
    Borg Invasion 4-D and a $35 coupon off
    collectables from Master Replicas.


    Overall, I found while the packaging is indeed
    interesting, it seems cheaply made. The plastic
    casing is durable, but once you open it up, the
    DVD casing seems sort of flimsy. I found some
    small plastic pieces rolling around inside that
    don't seem to come from anywhere.

    Give me some time to look at the menus and get
    you some screen shots.
     
  2. Britton

    Britton Well-Known Member

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    The packaging looks neat, but it looks like a bit of a hassle to open and close it and keep it an orderly process. Unfortunately the news that the transfer for "The City on the Edge of Forever" still has the edge jitters makes me very reluctant to take the plundge for this. This show is one of my favorites though.

    Regardless, I'm looking forward to your screen shots Ron!
     
  3. Shannon B

    Shannon B Member

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    Thanks for providing this information Ron.

    It's a big help! [​IMG]
     
  4. paul_austin

    paul_austin Well-Known Member

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    yay i anxiously await more details
     
  5. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Well-Known Member

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    My copy's different - it doesn't have a giant hand growing out of it... [​IMG]
     
  6. Mark Lx

    Mark Lx Well-Known Member

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    Just a nitpic of mine, but why do they have pictures of Sulu and Uhura (And I'll assume Chekov on season 2)on the disks and boxes. This doesn't represent the show in the 60s. They're just glorified extras. It was only later in cartoons and movies that they became a crew of 7. Of course by the 80s, you couldn't tell one from the other anyway.

    Star Trek's only sub-plots were the relationships of (and between) the 3 main characters. That's what made the show great. Multi-character soap opera is what makes subsequent Trek shows unwatchable in my opinion.
     
  7. Larry Geller

    Larry Geller Well-Known Member

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    quote:Just a nitpic of mine, but why do they have pictures of Sulu and Uhura (And I'll assume Chekov on season 2)on the disks and boxes. This doesn't represent the show in the 60s. They're just glorified extras. It was only later in cartoons and movies that they became a crew of 7.I have to assume that you are too young to have been there at the time, but, believe me, NOBODY considered them "glorified extras". Uhuru, as one of the first black women on a network series, got tons of attention (Dr. Martin Luther King sure didn't consider her a "glorified extra" when he begged her to remain on the series). Lt. Leslie was an extra.
     
  8. Lou Sytsma

    Lou Sytsma Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the sneak peek Ron!
     
  9. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    A little more on this new Star Trek set....

    As most of you are aware, the first time this
    series was released on DVD was during the very
    early days of the format itself. There wasn't
    much effort put into these discs when it came
    to menu design. With the original sets, you
    simply popped the DVD in and came to a rather
    plain graphic menu that let you choose between
    the episodes placed on each disc.

    Paramount has put considerably more effort into
    their menu structure, though I must say, it made
    it very difficult to compare discs on the fly with
    one DVD player. Between the Paramount DVD logo, FBI
    warnings and animated introduction, there is a
    considerable amount of wait to get an episode started
    and you cannot bypass any of the material.

    [​IMG]

    The menu begins an extended animated sequence that
    begins with the familiar Star Trek logo (seen above)
    and a Enterprise flyby as we hear Shatner's infamous
    Space...the final frontier.

    [​IMG]

    As the animation continues, we are brought inside
    as we encircle the deck of the ship. The menu stops
    in front of the ship's main view screen where the list
    of included episodes are placed.

    The CG animation is quite good throughout.

    [​IMG]

    Upon selecting the episode you wish to see, another
    animated sequence tilts down to a control console
    where you have the options listed above. The
    Communications selection gives you the option
    of 5.1 or Dolby Surround (the DVD defaults
    to 5.1 audio). Chapter Log lets you access
    scenes directly.

    How is the Video and Audio?


    I took a look at the original and re-released versions
    of The Space Seed hoping to be able to get an idea
    how improved these episodes would look.

    It was very difficult going back-and-forth between
    the two sets with a single DVD player simply because
    of the lag caused by the Paramount logos and opening
    animation on the new set.

    Honestly, both these versions look identical.
    It would be extremely hard for anyone to see any major
    differences between the two versions. The episodes
    still look somewhat dirty in areas making it quite
    evident that no additional debris were removed. I
    can even see identical scratches in the same scenes
    making me believe these are the same prints used in
    the older versions.

    Originally shot on film, these episodes look quite
    good. Image detail is sharp and colors are solid,
    with reds being a little on the hot side. The only
    sequences that seem to suffer here are the optical
    effects shots that show off quite a bit of dirt and
    grain.

    The 5.1 digital audio is extremely clean with
    a complete absence of any background hiss.
    Dialogue is firmly in the center channel with the
    supporting soundtrack across the fronts. If you
    listen closely (and I had to really listen) you can
    hear activity in the rear speakers. The overall
    level of the surrounds seems to be a bit low, but
    nevertheless I was able to hear the isolated sounds
    of the ships controls. Any of the show's music
    soundtrack ends up as echo in these rear channels.
    If you turn the surround levels up I would imagine
    that you could place yourself in the middle of the
    bridge. Those of you who put a lot of time into
    calibrating your audio may not wish to play with
    the surrounds.

    For those of you that own the original sets released
    years ago, upgrading may be an easy or tough choice.
    The original set was released across 40 discs. To
    compare, this new packaging certainly saves quite
    a bit of space on your shelves.

    Though I don't have the definitive answer on whether
    the picture has been remastered, I can only tell you
    my guess is no. In my opinion, if there was any
    video remastering done you would be very hard pressed
    to see it.

    Therefore, sans the new surround mix, I don't think you
    are getting anything improved here beyond the space
    saving packaging.

    I'll be interested to read what the other reviewers
    have to say.
     
  10. Larry Geller

    Larry Geller Well-Known Member

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    WHAT new 5.1 mix?? The earlier DVDs already had the 5.1 mix. The 2.0 PRO-LOGIC mix is new, not the 5.1. And don't the numerous extras count for something here?
     
  11. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    Larry,

    Sorry for the typos. Big mistake! I sped through
    this review without proofreading. I changed the
    specs in the review.

    And yes, the extras may be another reason worth
    considering an upgrade but alas I don't have the
    time to look into them here.

    I expect Scott Kimball to post a review shortly that
    takes a closer look at the supplements.
     
  12. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    quote:
    My copy's different - it doesn't have a giant hand growing out of it...


    Ha. My apologies for that.

    It looks unprofessional but was the ONLY way to
    avoid excessive flash bouncing in the picture.
     
  13. Joe Karlosi

    Joe Karlosi Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the preview, Ron. I've only started becoming a TREK fan in recent years (even though I'm over 40!) and so far, I have yet to see every episode. So this collection (all 3 seasons) will be a first for me, for the most part!

    I did buy about 7 or 8 of the original DVDs and sold them off when I discovered this set was in the works. So far, every episode I've seen has been great.

    The packaging definitely strikes me as bizarre, and I don't understand why studios feel so compelled to constantly play around with styles and so forth. Of course I'll wait till I actually hold this in my hands before making a definite judgment.
     
  14. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    Quite amazing, but cool to learn that someone
    of your age is just beginning to experience
    the very beginnings of Star Trek.
     
  15. Greg_S_H

    Greg_S_H Well-Known Member

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    Well, call me crazy, but I'm glad the hand's there. I thought it was on purpose, because it gives a better sense of the size of the packaging. It's much smaller than I thought it would be, which is good. Or, maybe you just have really huge hands. [​IMG]
     
  16. Britton

    Britton Well-Known Member

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    The hand is a great touch. Too bad it wasn't a giant green glowing hand though. [​IMG]
     
  17. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Well-Known Member

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    quote:Therefore, sans the new surround mix, I don't think you are getting anything improved here beyond the space

    saving packaging.



    WHAT new 5.1 mix?? The earlier DVDs already had the 5.1 mix. The 2.0 PRO-LOGIC mix is new, not the 5.1.





    I think Ron looked at the packaging, which mistakenly claims that the boxed set includes new 5.1 audio - it states that this is the first time TOS has been available 5.1. They LIED!!!!
     
  18. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    It's the exact length of a regular DVD case.
     
  19. Dave Scarpa

    Dave Scarpa Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the initial Look Ron, you've made my decision to Keep the original Releases very Easy. I'm amazed at the cases Paramount will use for these releases. They charge one of the highest MSRP of any studio on these sets and they continue to house them in very bad packaging. The Inside case is very similar to the voyager Packaging with an outer plastic box.



    Add to this the eps are in Airdate order, they are probably the same transfers. There are no commentaries, talking head featurettes, I Don't see that there is any reason to plunk down more $$$. I'll wait for the Eventual HD Remasters.Heck space isn't even an issue as I have my 40 disks in 8 - 5 disk Keep boxes with Ric Eastn's Great Artwork. Compared to the B5 sets at a Lower SRP , you at least get some commentaries there.



    For those that want to rent the 8th disk like myself to check out the extras once, there's no indication that Netflix will rent these. they have the original disks and seem content to stick with those. Maybe a chain will carry them but I'm doubtful.
     
  20. Bill Williams

    Bill Williams Well-Known Member

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    Excellent thoughts so far, Ron! This is one set I'm definitely looking forward to getting! [​IMG]
     

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