Star Trek: The Original Series/Trivia

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
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  • Acting for Two: Kirk in two episodes and the 6th movie.
  • Actor Shared Background:
    • Both DeForest Kelley and Bones are natives of Georgia and have Irish sounding names.
    • James Doohan had a degree in Engineering and even used it to save Gene Roddenberry from danger when they went out boating and ran into trouble. No record exists of him saying that the boat "cannae take much more of this" though.
  • Banned in China: The first BBC broadcast of "Miri" led to protests over its allegedly over-horrific nature (since it involved children in peril and adults getting killed), and as a result it and three later episodes — "Plato's Stepchildren", "The Empath", and "Whom Gods Destroy" — were suppressed from BBC broadcasts of the show until the 1990s due to being considered excessively violent and horrific.
  • Blooper: In "The Enemy Within", the scratches on Evil Kirk's face change side during his Villainous Breakdown near the end.
  • Cross-Dressing Voices: The Talosians in "The Cage"/"The Menagerie" are played by female actors but their voices are dubbed by male actors, most notably, Malachi Throne, who voices the lead Talosian.
  • The Danza:
    • Gary Lockwood as Gary Mitchell in "Where No Man Has Gone Before".
    • One of Adams' assistants in "The Dagger of the Mind" is named Eli. The actor playing him is named Eli Behar.
  • Dawson Casting:
    • Robert Walker was 26 years old when he played 17-year-old Charlie Evans in "Charlie X".
    • Michael J. Pollard (27 years old) and Kim Darby (19) play prepubescent children in "Miri".
  • Enforced Method Acting: In "Where No Man Has Gone Before", Gary Mitchell's Glowing Eyes of Doom were achieved by Gary Lockwood wearing silver contact lenses. Very primitives ones, with very small holes that he could only see through by raising his head and looking down his nose at everyone else, making his A God Am I act more believable.
  • Fan Nickname: The (unnamed) alien in "The Man Trap" is almost universally known as "the salt vampire".
  • Hey, It's That Sound: The transporter sound effect was based on part of the "TARDIS taking off" sound effect in Doctor Who.
  • Life Imitates Art: This show inspired so many things:
    • Possibly its ultimate triumph, as Nichelle Nichols' role on the show was the inspiration for Dr. Mae Jemison, America's first female African-American astronaut, who later did a cameo on Star Trek: The Next Generation.
    • And for the Bluetooth headset.
    • The show is often credited as the inspiration for Dr. Martin Cooper to invent the cell phone, but it also accurately predicted the tablet PC. Kirk is often shown using a stylus to sign a document on one, as we sign on electronic forms for credit card purchases today.
    • The 3.5" one-megabyte computer disc looks like the small square tile discs used in the series.
    • At the time the show was in production, the diagnostic panels over the beds and the "salt shaker" hand scanners used by McCoy were being developed and medical engineers were asking how the show's production designers had gotten hold of their plans. Today the diagnostic panels are commonplace.
    • The military and many high-level police agencies are experimenting with non-lethal heat and sound beams to disperse riots and disarm attackers without killing them. Phasers on Stun, anyone?
    • Automatically opening doors first came into common usage in the 1940s, but automatic sliding doors were still in development. The producers used to get mail from engineers demanding to know how they got their doors to open and close so fast (they were operated by stagehands). This lit the fire under more than a few engineers to perfect the automatic sliding door, which is commonplace today.
  • Magnum Opus Dissonance: Although "The Doomsday Machine" usually places very highly in fan polls and best-of lists, certain members of the production staff were (and are) a good deal less enthused. Writer Norman Spinrad disliked the end result, complaining about the casting (he wanted Robert Ryan for Decker) and the underwhelming depiction of the planet killer (which he envisioned as having been "bristling with weapons"). In an interview for the Archive of American Television, story editor D.C. Fontana actually named it as her least favorite episode.
  • The Other Darrin: Shatner's predecessor, Jeffery Hunter, played Captain Pike in "The Cage". This footage was later re-used in "The Menagerie", with Pike himself appearing a motionless deformity in an iron lung-type device. This was primarily to disguise the fact that Hunter was unavailable; this new Pike was played by a lookalike (such as he is) named Sean Kenney. What's interesting is that Captain Pike was retconned into Kirk's predecessor, as well; He was the original Captain of the Enterprise, with Mr. Spock as his science officer. This is still canon in the Abrams film, in which Bruce Greenwood plays Pike.
  • Reality Subtext: Scotty's refusal to lower the shields against orders in "A Taste of Armageddon" is based on an actual story from James Doohan's military service.
  • Real Life Relative: Many of the Onlies in "Miri" are children of various members of the cast and crew. The little girl Kirk picks up is played by William Shatner's daughter, Melanie Shatner.
  • Recycled Set: The same back-lot is used as 1930s New York in "The City on the Edge of Forever", a Space Amish town in "The Return of the Archons", and a planet that coincidentally looks exactly like 1960s Earth in "Miri" (it's actually the same back-lot used as Mayberry in The Andy Griffith Show; Kirk and Edith even walk past "Floyd's Barber Shop").
  • Red Shirt: Although the Trope Namer, the first red-shirted casualty doesn't appear in series until episode 7 ("What Are Little Girls Made Of?"); the very first casualties are blue-shirted Science Team and gold-shirted Command squaddies.
  • Serendipity Writes the Plot:
    • The transporter was created because it would be too expensive to have the crew land on the planets in a shuttle every episode.
    • During production of "Where No Man Has Gone Before", Gary Lockwood found the silver contact lenses painful and difficult to see through. Gary Mitchell's imperious stare is a result of Lockwood having to look down his nose through the pinholes in the lenses.
  • Throw It In:
    • The Vulcan mind-meld, neck pinch and salute are all examples of this. All were suggestions made by Leonard Nimoy. In the case of the first two, they replaced more mundane, conventional ideas in the original scripts (respectively, a simple interrogation in "Dagger of the Mind", and Spock slugging evil Kirk with a pistol butt in "The Enemy Within").
    • In "The Naked Time", Uhura's response to being cast as the "fair maiden" in Sulu's swashbuckling fantasy ("Sorry, neither.") was an ad lib by Nichelle Nichols during rehearsals.
    • The entire scene in "The Naked Time" where Spock struggles to remain in control of his emotions was suggested by Leonard Nimoy, and they only had time for one take, which was entirely improvised.
    • According to legend, the stagehands didn't like Shatner very much, so in the episode "The Trouble With Tribbles", they continued the avalanche of tribbles much longer than was scripted (including the final tribble that bounces off his head at the end). Shatner can clearly be seen glancing up at the prop men with annoyance.
  • Troubled Production: Part of the reason "The Alternative Factor" is so bad is that the intended guest star, John Drew Barrymore, the most notoriously flaky member of that family, suddenly disappeared shortly before shooting and Robert Brown had to replace him at literally the last minute.