The 17 Coolest Things in Starlog #009: Star Wars Ascends, Star Trek Descends, and Shatner Absconds

By Sherilyn Connelly in Daily Lists, Movies, Nerdery, TV
Friday, August 22, 2014 at 6:00 am

9. Yep, He's Totally Done With Star Trek.


The Star Trek years, don'tchaknow, which are very much in the past. Still, "inside" stories recorded "live!" I can't help thinking that since they were on a roll, they should have put quotes around "thrilling," "exclusive," and "record-breaking." And "six weeks," just to be on the safe side.

10. Wonder-Cheesecake.


An article about the ABC Wonder Woman series, set during World War II, getting dropped by the network and picked up by CBS. The network updated the show to modern times, because the fashions were so much better in 1977 than in 1942. And for budgetary reasons as well, but whatever.

Also, many pictures of Lynda Carter in costume. Enjoy.


11. Brooding Beefcake.


"Perhaps" forever, they say. What does the road ahead hold? He was clearly angling to be a Sears model.


Sitting in his chick-magnet with the Starlog correspondent, Shatner (and not at all in the midst of a mid-life crisis) explains what's up.


So that's that, he'll have us know.


No Star Trek movie, and thus by extension, no Star Trek of any kind. But he's still makin' movies, and couldn't sound more excited.


Nothing like the star thinking there are some moments that might be very effective! Kingdom of the Spiders is available as a VOD from Rifftrax if you want to judge for yourself.

It should be mentioned that the interview with Shatner in Starlog #009 was done before the announcement inStarlog #008 that Star Trek would be returning to television. So he certainly hadn't received his hand-delivered press release just yet...

12. Please Come Back to the Show! If You Want.


In Susan Sackett's Star Trek Report column, she reveals the method by which the original cast were informed about the proposed TV series. Seems kinda impersonal and vague, giving them press releases rather than job offers or personal letters, but this is Roddenberry we're talking about.

Production on the series was expected to begin shortly after this issue hit the stands...


...and, seriously, they wanted it on the air within six months? "Somewhat unrealistic" was an understatement. This was the recurring problem with the new Star Trek: for as long as it took for Paramount to decide to make it, once they decided to make it, it was always too rushed. The same thing happened with the eventual Star Trek: The Motion Picture which had an unbreakable opening date of December 7, 1979. It would have been hard enough to make the movie, let alone make it good, even if production began in late 1977. But Paramount was still publicly dicking around with the idea of doing it as a TV show even after Star Wars became a phenomenon, and starting truly invading the conventions...

13. Creeping Star Wars Law at Space-Con.


Ms. Sackett formally announced that theStar Trek movie was dead and the TV series was mostly a go at Space-Con 4 in June of 1977. Note that the flyer (not published in Starlog, but instead found on is still heavily slanted towards Star Trek, with no mention of the upstart Star Wars...

...but we do have our first Wookiee sighting, as well as Don Post's masks for sale.


Changes were afoot, the future was coming on, and the name of the future would surely be...



Magicam! The new miracle process that makes you part of the action!

Well, not exactly. The details of the system are way too left-brainy for me to properly summarize, but basically it turns this...


...into this.


It's not wholly dissimilar to the front-projection system that Stanley Kubrick used to the film the Dawn of Man sequences in 2001: A Space Odyssey (and/or to fake the moon landings, depending on who you ask), nor the Introvision system Sam Raimi used in Darkman and Army of Darkness, but not the same thing as those, either. (Speaking of Darkman for the second time this article, please enjoy my essay about the film over at the Village Voice, and list about the two straight-to-VHS Darkman sequels.)

The process never quite caught on, though they did win a bunch of Emmys for their work on Carl Sagan's Cosmos.

15. David Gerrold Almost Drops a Bomb.


David Gerrold's column in this issue was an impassioned plea to donate blood to the just-launched Robert A. Heinlein Blood Drive, which is as noble cause as it gets, but damn, I want to read "The Phenomenon Phenomenon" so much. Hopefully it's not just a tease, and he'll revisit it in a later issue.

16. You Want Even More Star Wars? Here, Have Even More Star Wars!


Starlog's continued random coverage of Star Wars gets even randomer, and starts off with a huge "Fuck You" to Star Trek, the show without which Starlog would not exist in its current form. They don't say it in so many words, and there's no question that the Three Laws were a major milestone, but calling Star Wars the best thing to happen to science fiction since 1942? Damn, that's harsh.

It's a basically a bunch of vaguely organized trivia, with an unsurprising focus on the hardware, the aliens and robots, and the audience-identification character, though there are other interesting tidbits.


I suspect the "you spelled Wookiee wrong!" letters will pile up in Starlog #011.


While Lucas' Flash Gordon inspiration has always been an open secret, I'm skeptical about "most of the happy fans" referring to it as "the best Flash Gordon movie ever made." That just rings false, somehow.

Not ringing false is Carrie Fisher, proving from the start just how awesome she is.


The "George Lucas is Star Wars is George Lucas" angle is hit pretty hard, including this.


It's times like this that I take solace in the fact that my work will never, ever be so popular that people will go through it with a fine-toothed comb to find me contradicting myself. We're all hypocritical and inconsistent at times, every last one of us. I do believe that 1977 Lucas was being sincere in his desire for people to copy the movie so there'd be more like it for him to enjoy, and though accounts vary, I'd wager that he probably wasn't directly involved in Twentieth Century Fox's copyright-infringement lawsuit against MCA over Battlestar Galactica. I've of course disagreed with a lot of things he's done over the past few decades, but Lucas just seemed so bushy-tailed at the time, y'know? And even though he had the foresight to get the merchandising rights, he couldn't have known where it was all going.

17. The Star Wars Creep Continues in the Classifieds.


Not just a new one, but the first Star Wars fanzine! I wrote about it and others last year.

The deadline for classified ads in Starlog #009 was July 8, 1977, though they also knew that that issue wouldn't come out until September 1, giving them plenty of time get their Super Star Wars Catalog(s) ready to go.


And the soundtrack, though unlike William Shatner's recent discography, it was available in stores. (Probably; I haven't been able to track down an exact release date for the soundtrack album, but it was surely on the shelves by that point in 1977.)


The first Ecumenical movement between Star Wars and Star Trek begins in the 'zines...

...while others could tell the breeze was blowin' from the Easterly direction.


Et tu, Starfleet Command?

Coming up in Starlog #010: The return of the Space Shuttle Enterprise, the Rock Connection, and Bakshi on Bakshi.

Previously by Sherilyn Connelly:

The 7 Coolest Things About Ayumi Seto's J-POP Appearance at San Francisco's Cherry Blossom Festival

7 Reasons You Should See Terminator Too: Judgment Play

Manos: The Hands of Fate Restored - The So-Called "Worst Movie" Has Never Looked Better

The 33 Coolest Videos from PONIES: The Anthology

6 Reasons You Should Watch Bullet in the Face

The 5 Coolest Things About the Navajo Translation of Star Wars

15 Awesomely Nerdy Behind-the-Scenes Documentaries You Can Watch for Free Right Now

The Eight Funniest Recurring Themes in the Original Star Wars Trading Cards

The Six Coolest Things In Starlog #001: The Voyage in Retro-Nerdery Begins

Email Print

Sponsor Content