Speaking of Star Trek
Posted on October 13, 2009 Posted by John Scalzi 41 Comments
Treksters, your latest nerdgasm has just arrived:
Yes, the Internet’s own Wil Wheaton is collecting up his memories of his Trek days. To quote the blurbage:
From Encounter at Farpoint to Datalore, relive the first half of Star Trek: The Next Generation’s unintentionally hilarious first season through the eyes, ears and memories of cast member and fan Wil Wheaton (Wesley Crusher) as he shares his unique perspective in the episode guide you didn’t even know you were dying to read.
ENJOY snarky episode recaps!
EXPAND your Technobabble vocabulary!
AMUSE your friends with quotable dialog!
BOLDLY go behind the scenes!
Nifty. If’n you love you some Next Generation — and who among us other than Charlie Stross does not? — this is going to be some fun reading. Because that Wheaton fella, well, see. He’s kinda amusing, he is.
And if you go by Wil’s website, you can hear his podcasts of the first few episodes. Don’t drink or eat while listening- you don’t want any of those embarassing keyboard/monitor episodes.
If you’ve followed Wil’s synopses before, you’ll know that he constantly mines comedy gold from exactly the “tech the tech” veins so behated of the inestimable Charles. It’s all good!
For the avoidance of doubt, I am a Charlie Stross Superfan, mkay?
I’m beyond amused that Wil released this on the same day as Charlie’s rant. The universe does have a sense of humor.
Not to be confused with J.G. Ballard’s Memories of the Space Age, presumably…
I was never a big fan of TNG, actually. Largely because of Wesley Crusher. I am a couple of years older than Mr. Wheaton (and slightly younger than you, Mr. Scalzi), and TNG hit the air not too long after I and many of my friends had starting college, our ages varying between 12 and 16. The inappropriate comparisons and incorrect assumptions were legion. (I have a special loathing for _Doogie Howser_ for the same reason.)
Of Wil Wheaton, however, I am a huge fan. Thanks for the pointer!
I have been waiting for this book for a long, long time. When I say it released I let out a child like squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!
Ah… the Wheaton kid. Too funny by half, he is.
Am I the only man in the world that couldn’t stand TNG, simply because Kirk wasn’t around?
Ruzin – I’m sure you’re not, but I gotta say, that’s one of the reasons I *liked* TNG. Too bad there was a Riker, though.
Thanks for the pointer John. Definitely worth a read. I always loved TNG. Hate to admit I’m old enough to have been one of the original Star Trek fans, during it’s first run, no less. Glad to see “Wesley” landed on his feet. “Dr Crusher” would be proud.
I love the recap where Wil watches the episode where Wesley becomes a cast member and comes away being furious at his own character.
This isn’t the most relevant comment, but I LOVE that covert art! The old-timey HG Wells style just kills me. I would totally pick this one up based on the cover alone!
@tallycola errr cover art. Learn to proof read, self.
Dare we to hope that, in place of an author photo, there is a reproduction of a certain painting on black velvet?
That would be all kinds of outstanding.
Sounds like Wheaton is monetizing his already paid for work at http://www.tvsquad.com/bloggers/wil-wheaton/ ?
Good for him – why let people read something for free when it can be sold instead. Especially after having already been paid to write it.
Sounds like the sort of big idea that just doesn’t get the respect that it deserves. Especially when, if you play it cleverly enough, you could get other people to actually write most of the content for a book for free, while all the royalties flow to the author, as stated on the check.
Could even be a success in the mass market, if certain trade rumors found on the Internet are to be believed.
Yes, never before in the history of the world has someone ever collected material previously freely available into book form and sold it.
I’ve noticed you have an affinity toward tendentiousness without corresponding logic when you post here. Try to do better.
I’m just wondering why he had to mix his scifi and put Tripods on the cover.
(Yes, I know they have more than 3 legs/tentacles…but for some reason, Tripods were the first thing I thought of when I saw the cover. Speaking of which, I should really reread those books. I loved them when I was in sixth grade.)
They’re the aliens from the very first “Next Generation” episode.
This was released On My Birthday. What a great present to me – Thanks Wil!
I guess it’s been too long since I watched Encounter at Farpoint.
He should get together with BBI and make a MST3k’ed version of Trek with full shadowrama action. Problem is, I can’t think of a good 2nd robot. Nomad, of course, would be the Tom Servo of the show, but who for Crow?
I really just want to see Subspace Communication’s Frank.
That cover is brilliant. I love it.
Cory@22: it is not possible for enough time to elapse between viewings of “Encounter at Farpoint.” The span from the big bang to the heat-death of the universe would be at best a good start.
I’ve enjoyed every book that Wil has created…and I enjoyed these write-ups when I saw them on his site. And if buying this can, even slightly, make up for Wil’s disappointment to the treatment of ‘Just a Geek’, then it’s money well-spent.
The beauty of the Intarwebs is that it creates a democratized patronage system that was previously limited to individuals and grant organizations. I like Wil’s work, both in acting and writing…supporting him in a way that’s small for me but collectively big for him (or so I hope).
And, if you actually checked your info you would find that Wil rewrote his original pieces and substantially enlarged the work by tracking down other ST:TNG cast members and adding their memories to his own etc. Definitely way more than a cut and paste of the original online posts.
I can’t believe I didn’t know about this book! Thank you for educating me. My credit card popped out of my wallet like a bagel from a toaster when I read this post. Off to purchase…
Thanks for the kind comments, everyone. I worked damn hard to make this book more than just a cut-n-paste of the original entries, and so far feedback from readers indicates that they’re enjoying that.
And, John, thank you so much for the mention on Whatever; it was a wonderful surprise.
Awesome: He’s selling a non-DRM’d .pdf version. Bought, converted, loaded onto my Kindle, all in under five minutes. Speaking of living in the Future.
The Kindle, BTW, recently enabled me to read Our Gracious Host’s entire oeuvre, one after another, gulpgulpgulp yay!. I’m on a catch-up binge after nearly 6 years unable to read print books due to vision issues…
I’ve read a few of his original synopsii. What I like best about them is the joy. Yeah, he’s snarky and there are a few people who he really didn’t like working with, but he really seems to have a great deal of affection for (almost) everyone involved. He has good things to say even about the bad episodes, often because he just loved the people he was working with. That’s nice.
As a side note, John: CUT IT OUT! This is getting expensive. I think if I quit reading The Whatever and just took $20 out of my wallet each week and burned it I’d end up ahead of the game.
This sounds very interesting. I was a big fan of TNG (well, after the first season) and even liked Wil’s Wesley Crusher character (the episode with a young Ashley Judd is a classic). As another poster hinted at, Wesley Crusher was just about UNIVERSALLY hated by everyone of a similar age studying almost any science at the college level.
“I think if I quit reading The Whatever and just took $20 out of my wallet each week and burned it I’d end up ahead of the game.”
You can just send that $20 to me, Alan. I know what to do with it.
“…the episode with a young Ashley Judd is a classic.”
Two episodes: “Darmok” and “The Game,” both as Robin Lefler. Wil got to kiss her in the latter; the former was better sf.
WIL WHEATON – credit card – purchase ….
But I would also enter into to the historical account that Encounter at Farpoint sucked hard.
I watched it in a college dorm with about 100 other people. The feeling was of tremendous disappointment.
TNG took awhile to find its sea-legs.
I had no idea this book was coming out. If it has anything close to Wil’s tale of his encounter with William “F” Shatner, it should be gold.
Nifty. If’n you love you some Next Generation — and who among us other than Charlie Stross does not?
Dare I commit heresy here, but anyone else suspect that TNG would be a one season stinker today? IMO, it was awful but got a lot of slack it didn’t really deserve thanks to the enormous goodwill of Trekkies and the fact that 1987 wasn’t exactly a running buffet of prime SF TV.
Wil nails just how bad it was, and he deserves credit for doing it with genuine wit and good humour rather than snark.
Oh, and while I admire Charlie Stross very bad of him to say (to paraphrase) “X. sucks — not that I watch that shit because I know I’ll hate it.”
Fair enough, as far as it goes. But I suspect he’d take rather violent exception to being told that his work blows chunks, because… you just know science fiction is juvenile bullshit for retards, so why sully your eyes by bothering to read any of it?
Two thoughts entered my mind upon seeing that cover:
*sigh* More money lost to the ether…
I love me some Wil Wheaton, and definitely intend to purchase this at some point in the future. *nods*
Why has there been nothing on Whatever about Mr. Wheaton’s appearance on The Big Bang Theory. I thought he was great. Very funny. And Jim Parsons Khan impressions were priceless.
If you hated the first season of TNG, you’re not alone. Wil mentions surprise that they got renewed at several points in the book when he’s reviewing a few of the more cringe-worthy episodes. And he’s not afraid to snark about it! I rather liked MotF!