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 Posted:   Nov 9, 2000 - 5:56 AM   
 By:   ZapBrannigan   (Member)

The late-sixties Star Trek series doesn't get enough respect, but even an episode without its own specially composed score, like This Side of Paradise, can be ripe for commentary.

The story involves a planet with flower spores that alter the human mind, making people licentious, romantically susceptible, and insistent upon long vacations. Yes, it turns them into Europeans. Most of the Enterprise crew are like, "Hmmm, sex and drugs, eh? I'll take one of each!"

The music is tracked in from prior episodes, and only the best stuff was chosen. Some highlights:

When the spores hit Spock and he convulses, we hear a mystical, suspense-building cue. Alexander Courage wrote it for Captain Pike's entry into the Rigel VII illusion in The Cage. The piece is not included on GNP's soundtrack CD, to my infinite sorrow.

When Spock loses his battle with the spores, he takes an immediate shine to Leila Kalomi (Jill Ireland) and the music artfully shifts into a love theme. It's "Ruth" by Gerald Fried, written for Shore Leave. This becomes Leila's leitmotif, to be fully played in her tearful farewell scene with Spock. (Star Trek Vol 3, GNPD 8030).

Kirk's first view of the mentally altered Spock, hanging from a tree, is tracked with "Old English" from Shore Leave. Originally intended to suggest medieval glamour and gallantry, here "Old English" conveys a jaunty disregard for both Kirk's authority and Spock's own Vulcan logic. (ST Vol 3, GNPD 8030).

A shot of the deserted Enterprise bridge, which a disconsolate Kirk enters and slowly surveys, is scored with "The Big Go" from The Naked Time (Courage). It is a finely wrought, martial lament that accents William Shatner's performance: discipline in the face of unmitigated disaster; grim resolve overcoming any notion of fear. (GNPD 8030 again).

The spores are defeated during a climactic brawl on the planet surface, which provides a welcome chance to hear Fred Steiner's most exciting cue from The Corbomite Maneuver. Originally titled "Cube Radiation," it's an urgent, lapel-grabbing scherzo that I can't get enough of. (On two CDs: Best of ST Vol 2, GNPD 8061; and Varese Sarabande's Star Trek Vol 1, VCD 47235. The Varese version is a very good re-recording by Fred Steiner and the Royal Philharmonic).

The episode has more than just music. Guest star Jill Ireland ranks with Marianne Hill ("Dr Helen Noel" in Dagger of the Mind) as a top notch space babe. Jerry Finnerman seems to have shot the close-ups of both women using a diffusion filter, which concealed any flaws and made them into perfect angels. He would later give Cybil Shepard the same good treatment in "Moonlighting" on ABC.

This Side of Paradise is a musical treat, and Jill Ireland supplies some extra eye candy.

 Posted:   Nov 10, 2000 - 7:36 AM   
 By:   Josh "Swashbuckler" Gizelt   (Member)

It's interesting to look at television scores that were assembled from library cues for that particular series.

I remember how the original Star Trek series colored my impressions of musical continuity; music that appeared in one episode would appear in another, maybe in a different context, but with the same general purpose. The entire series, however, had a musical unity.

I also liked how thematic material would be applied at one point or another to a particular situation, and would then be used for that sort of situation. A good example of this would be Jerry Fielding's "A Matter of Pride," which became Scotty's theme in later episodes.

 Posted:   Nov 10, 2000 - 9:30 AM   
 By:   Howard L   (Member)

I recall TV Guide sported a "close-up" for this episode the week of its initial airing. It included a picture of Spock and Leila. Indeed, this was one of ST's finest episodes made even more memorable by the tracked score. I have never forgotten that scene of Kirk alone in the bridge and that wonderful music, especially the pull-back shot, music, and sudden shift when the spores are unleashed. The music, if I also recall correctly, accompanied the scene in Naked Time near the climax when Kirk entered the bridge and McCoy gave him the hypo--no words, just film with music.

The "Ruth/Love Theme" never sounded lovelier than in Paradise. The apex was the extended string arrangement underscoring the scene when Spock and Leila--the spores having lost their influence--tenderly mourn the love that was no longer possible. It contained some of the serie's finest writing; can further recall Spock stating "I am what I am, Leila", pondering over men and their "self-made purgatories", and closing with "mine can be no worse than anyone else's."

 Posted:   Nov 9, 2000 - 11:48 PM   
 By:   Graham Watt   (Member)

The tracked music was always superbly done in Star Trek. So much so that I once asked on one of the message boards if we really needed composers anymore! Well, of course, I was hounded to death, but luckily for me I came back as a ghost. I still think that tracked music in TV series works though, if it's done with taste and skill, like in Star Trek.

 Posted:   Nov 11, 2000 - 10:08 AM   
 By:   Nesius   (Member)

And who could forget the "bad guy" theme from "Balance of Terror," revamped in "Mirror, Mirror?" What great music. Is anyone else agitated that all the music from the classic series is not available? For instance, The Man Trap, The Enterprise Incident, Elaan of Troyus, Friday's Child, Catspaw. . .

 Posted:   Nov 11, 2000 - 12:05 AM   
 By:   Howard L   (Member)

PSSSST! Swashbuckler, you thinking what I'm thinking?


 Posted:   Nov 11, 2000 - 11:25 PM   
 By:   Nesius   (Member)

Hey, I just watched the episode last night, as I was a bit curious about the score. This one really WAS scored quite well. And the story was pretty solid, too, unlike some others, such as most of the third season. This was back in the first season, when they were still writing solid scripts. I think they (the writers) were all hit by a few too many spores from the paradise plants in the third season!">

 Posted:   Nov 13, 2000 - 9:24 AM   
 By:   Josh "Swashbuckler" Gizelt   (Member)

Howard, I think so...

 Posted:   Dec 27, 2000 - 10:06 AM   
 By:   Luscious Lazlo   (Member)

Memo to Zap: I too am bitterly disappointed by GNP's exclusion of Sandy Courage's "mystical suspense-building" cue. (I am incapable of writing the name "Courage" without adding the word "mystical".) It's a shame that GNP didn't release verbatim scores. And let it be known that I appreciate Fred Steiner's "Cube Radiation" far more than you do. Even though I haven't heard Steiner's re-recording.

Regarding Jerry Finnerman's diffusion filter. That reminds me of a Marlon Brando comment. He said that Loretta Young "went out in a blaze of ectoplasm".">
Jill Ireland.
The bland leading the bland.">
Marianna Hill.
Dishwater-dull and proud of it.">
Babs Babcock.
The camp-queen dominatrix of my dreams.">
Sherry Jackson.
Everyone's favorite Stepford bimbo.">
Kim Darby.
Don't anyone dare make fun of Kim.
She happens to be Howard's one true love.

 Posted:   Dec 26, 2000 - 11:19 PM   
 By:   Howard L   (Member)

Oh that Miri. Great choral score, right?

yeah, yeah, yeah-yeah yeah,
yeah, yeah, yeah-yeah yeah,
yeah, yeah, yeah-yeah yeah,
Yeah, yeah, yeah-yeah yeah,
Yeah, Yeah, Yeah-Yeah Yeah,
YEAH, Yeah, Yeah-Yeah Yeah,

 Posted:   Dec 27, 2000 - 2:41 AM   
 By:   H. Rocco   (Member)

What, no shots of Barbara Luna????? mmmmmm ...">

 Posted:   Dec 30, 2000 - 1:10 AM   
 By:   ZapBrannigan   (Member)

Luscious Lazlo: Ireland and Hill, bland and dull? Get out of town!!! I love them.

But thanks for the great pictures.

You must have "The Best of Star Trek Volume 2" with "The Corbomite Maneuver" on it. Another great one on that CD is "Theme From Star Trek - Lounge Mix." This was the original soundtrack "source music" heard at Tom Leighton's dinner party in "The Conscience of the King." It reminds me a bit of "The Omega Man" rendition of "A Summer Place." Those gentle jazz drums really do it for me.

Regarding Barbara Babcock, who still looks great today, she was in four episodes:

- "The Squire of Gothos" (voice of Trelane's mother)

- "Assignment: Earth" (voice of Beta Five computer, meow sounds of Isis the cat)

- "A Taste of Armageddon" (Mea Three)

- "Plato's Stepchildren" (Philana the Dominatrix)

I like her too.

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