Review: “Tomorrow Is Yesterday” |
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Review: “Tomorrow Is Yesterday” May 9, 2007

by Rick Sternbach , Filed under: Review,TOS Remastered , trackback

“Tomorrow is Yesterday” is one of those Original Series episodes that is just plain fun, with a few melodramatic moments, an interesting science fiction concept, lurching starship sets (or at least lurching cameras), and a few obligatory fistfights. One could very easily watch it, feel satisfied that this was vintage Trek, and go on to the next episode on a TOS DVD without taking a critical look some forty years after it first aired in 1967. Anniversaries work their way into reviews like this; the episode aired about twenty years after pilot Kenneth Arnold spotted what people immediately began calling flying saucers and UFOs, and only two days before the tragic Apollo 1 fire, which is somewhat ironic given the mention of the “first manned moon shot” heard over the Enterprise bridge speaker

Written by D.C. Fontana, “Tomorrow is Yesterday” is one of the earliest examples of the franchise’s long and sometimes torturous relationship with time travel. I haven’t spoken to Dorothy about it personally, but I imagine she asked a few people about black holes and gravitation and magnetic fields and such, and formulated a mechanism by which the U.S.S. Enterprise would be chucked back through time. By reversing the process, using the now-famous “slingshot effect,” the Enterprise could return to the 23rd century and all made well again. Throwing the Enterprise back, and at the same time pulling John Christopher “forward” into the world of super-science and routine space travel, makes for a wonderful dilemma. It serves as a model for the stories to follow that placed any Trek heroes in unfamiliar times and places. Early in the Next Generation game, producer Rick Berman said “We’re not doing time travel stories.” He must have been speaking facetiously, knowing it was inevitable, but the fact remains that time travel is fun, it’s been a staple of science fiction since H.G. Wells’ “The Time Machine,” and we’ve since learned a lot more about how it works in the Star Trek universe. If I really wanted to, I could probably reverse-engineer how going FTL near the sun lets you go back in time, but it’s going to take me longer to work out how beaming a person into themselves (like with Captain Christopher) makes them forget what happened. Hmmm.

you will forget everything

“Tomorrow is Yesterday” does its part to present some great signature Star Trek elements, such as the Vulcan nerve pinch, the mention of the United Earth Space Probe Agency (UESPA), the notion that communicators are needed for location and transport, and that there are only twelve ships like the U.S.S. Enterprise in Starfleet. One interesting bit that nicely predates tablet computers and PDAs occurs when Christopher offers to sketch out a layout of the Omaha air base, and Kirk hands him the electronic clipboard we all know from various bridge scenes. It just makes sense, and speaks again to the idea that in the future, people are very comfortable with that sort of technology. To me it also connects to the Kirk and Sulu beam-in into the air base corridor. Kirk taps on the bulletin board as if to say “Gee, look at that. They still used paper.” Slightly amusing, since he has a number of books in his quarters.

haha we don’t need your silly paper

For the most part, the remastering of the episode effects feels quite nicely integrated with the live action. I could mentally ignore the original effects and believe that the computer-generated U.S.S. Enterprise really was gliding through the upper atmosphere, its Bussard collectors blinking and fritzing. The publicized use of orbital photography from the space shuttle and International Space Station definitely is effective, as is what I assume are the large Earth texture and cloud maps from the NASA Blue Marble website. The photo-real Earth only makes the original planet effects seem that much more primitive. Okay, I can’t completely ignore them if I have to make comparisons. It isn’t as if we didn’t know what the Earth looked like from space in 1967, but it does say that the time and money probably weren’t available to achieve even a good approximation, as Chesley Bonestell provided seventeen years before in Destination Moon.

The downshot of the Enterprise over the Earth, along with the various flybys while in orbit, gave a good sense of the mass of the starship, though a few of the later ship wobbles felt smaller and model-like. Some ship shadows didn’t exactly jibe with lighting on the Earth and moon. Still, much better than the originals. The only flyby that made me jump was the in-your-face closeup of the saucer and nacelles. I would have pulled back to give the shot a touch more “air.”

The Earth: Nothing beats the real thing

The CG shots done for the Earth departure and slingshot maneuver were also more enjoyable and actually showed what was supposed to be happening as described by Spock and Scotty. The initial approach to the sun was somewhat unconvincing, as the sun appeared to be almost as close as the moon, though I’m assuming that was a result of available shot timing and having to get the point across that the ship was heading out at Ludicrous Speed. The sun-skimming and breakaway also got the point across, though my astronomical artist brain lobe kept telling me the photosphere should have been a heck of a lot brighter and not looking like it was seen through dark instrument filters— All right, got to stop doing that. It’s still fun. The various twists and turns the Enterprise makes in its “backwards time” bubble are fine, CBS having to provide visual evidence for some space-time ideas that I’m still scratching my head about. The good old chronometers running backwards are another improvement over the original, but I keep asking myself how the ship knows that time is running backw— ah, I’m doing it again. The CG F-104 Starfighter shots are well done, though like with a lot of CG aircraft these days, they could have done with a little more contrast and possibly a tiny bit of fuselage shake or camera shake or both. The darkish canopy in one scene was puzzling; perhaps they wanted to show it reflecting a darker high altitude sky, but it seemed oddly opaque. Ah, well, another minor nit picked.

The Sun and the F-104: not real enough

“Tomorrow is Yesterday” remains one of my favorite Star Trek stories for its characters, thought-provoking plot, spaceship engineering, and bizarre bending of space and time. The remastered edition cleans up the effects and gives us another keeper.

Wait a second. What happened to “Good morning, Captain”?


Rick Sternbach was the senior illustrator/designer on ST: TMP as well as TNG, DS9 and VOY. Visit his site Space Model Systems


1. Reign1701A - May 9, 2007

God this episode needed a facelift. And CBS-D gave it a damn sexy one. I agree with the comments about the sun not being bright enough. And some of the ship movements in the atmosphere of Earth were kind of wonky. But still, VAST improvement over the original. The orbit shots were gorgeous, and I love the different sense of scale used. Earth seemed HUGE! I wish they would vary the scale of the planets relative to the Enterprise more like this in other episodes…because it seems like every planet the Enterprise visits is about the same size. Anyway, some parts could have been better but still, WAAAAAY BETTER than the original.

2. Cox of Seagulls - May 9, 2007

Nice review and an excellent episode. I was frankly a bit suprised by how fake the sun looked, I thought it was a huge ball of flaming gas, millions of miles wide. It looked like a painted disco ball in this episode.
Other than that, great work by CBS as usual. I think TOS-R is going to be my TOS of choice when I choose to watch a classic episode in the future as opposed to the originals.

3. Lao3D - May 9, 2007

Very thoughtful and detailed review. That put the finger on what was wrong with the slingshot/sun effect — “the photosphere should have been a heck of a lot brighter and not looking like it was seen through dark instrument filters” — but as Mr. Sternbach also points out, it was still a heck of a lot of fun.

4. Herbert Eyes Wide Open - May 9, 2007


No sniping! No revisionist history! No carping commentary about everything that CBS-D has done right or wrong from day one! No puffing with glib flippancy to illustrate one’s “wordsmith” ability or, more precisely, lack thereof.

This review was even-handed, thoughtful, insightful and unguarded-ly affectionate.

Thanks, Rick… Good job and well done.

5. Greg Stamper - May 9, 2007

A Kind Review accenting the positive for the most part and I cannot dispute many of the high points. However for anyone who has read the previous threads, you are aware there are points of concern.
Indeed the “Warp Drive Nacelle Cap Issue” should give way to “Conveying Mass and Movement” especially when the U.S.S. Enterprise must behave in a dynamic fashion.

6. ety3 - May 9, 2007

Solar accuracy not withstanding, actually seeing the Enterprise whipping around the sun gave the scene tons more excitement and drama than the original’s shimmying model did.

It was a fine job, CBS-D.

7. Kaaaahhhn - May 9, 2007

Nice review.

I do prefer to think, however, that when Kirk points to the paper-based announcement on the bulletin board, that he was reacting to what’s ON the page, versus the paper it was printed on. Perhaps he was amused by the fact that it might have said, “Watch the live moon landing in the commissary this Saturday.”

Or, better yet, “Star Trek renewed for another season!”

8. Blair Burns - May 9, 2007

I’ve actually come up with a way that the ship knows that it is going back in time. What if the chronometers work by constantly quantum dating the hull. As Captain Archer told us, that would tell not how old an object it, but from what point in time it came from.

9. Greg Stamper - May 9, 2007

#8 – Great point. Many of the “Plot holes” we like to point out can be explained by our ignorance of the subtle technology and nature of space in the Trek Universe. We are after all Earthbound.
We are something comparable to the Squire of Gothos “Trelane” – viewing from a great distance. Our Fire may burn but it gives off no heat – – – often we don’t understand.
In other words, we fans really know how to patch those holes.

10. CmdrR - May 9, 2007

Nice review. I know there are still holes in the logic of this episode, but seriously, just try to sit down and write a sci-fi story. See how far you get before you have to cheat a little. If we don’t suspend disbelief (what really would be the effect of beaming 185 pounds of man into 185 pounds of same man from the day before?) then we’ll give up quickly and read White House press releases to ease our tensions.
Anyway — love the episode. Give the remastering a B+ on this one, only because I think the E looked small and plastic in several shots.

8 – Fine. I’ll buy that. Now try to explain how the crew is supposed to go its merry way at the end of TNG’s “Clues.” Apparently, the whole rest of the universe doesn’t want to spoil the gag that they’ve lost several days.

11. Spock's Brain - May 9, 2007

“The initial approach to the sun was somewhat unconvincing, as the sun appeared to be almost as close as the moon..” I think that’s Mercury that the E is seen passing by. Sulu states as much in the epsidode.

12. Ensign Ricky - May 9, 2007

Nice one Spock’s Brain, we also see Pluto for a split second on the way back to the future.

13. Thorny - May 9, 2007


I think the planets mostly look the same size in Star Trek because the ship is usually in “Standard Orbit”, so ordered by Kirk. That is, I suspect a “standard orbit” is determined to be a specific percentage distance from the center of the planet, relative to the size of the planet. But in “Tomorrow Is Yesterday”, Spock specifically states they’re in a low orbit.

14. JB - May 9, 2007

Well done, Rick. Thank you.

15. Gary Seven - May 9, 2007

#4- Herbert …writes:

No sniping! No revisionist history! No carping commentary about everything that CBS-D has done right or wrong from day one! No puffing with glib flippancy to illustrate one’s “wordsmith” ability or, more precisely, lack thereof.
This review was even-handed, thoughtful, insightful and unguarded-ly affectionate.”

Last time my post was removed so let’s see what happens.

I agree totally with you Herbert. This was a GOOD review. Unlike Mr. Bailey’s reviews, it was not overly negative nor did it go off on tangents in an attempt to be witty by taking cheap shots with the benefit of, oh say, 40 years of hindsight. No, this was a review that decided to focus on the pros and cons of a very, very good episode, and it was done well.

16. Shaye - May 9, 2007

Thank you Rick for a fair and unbiased review of this well made and well remastered episode, it was always a fave of mine, and now with the vastly improved cbs/cgi I admit sheepishly have often blasted , well it looks darn good..better than ever!

Thanks for a 3 out of 4 quality wise remastered episode!

Roger Perry is a good actor also and a true plus to this episode.

live long and prosper!

17. diabolik - May 9, 2007

I think Kirk was noting the old physical “bulletin board” concept versus the futuristic internet BB’s. :)

18. diabolik - May 9, 2007

The episode would have made a whole lot more sense in McCoy had used some medical machine or drug to wipe their short-term memories, then as they go forward in time (after going back) beam them back shortly after they disappeared the first time. A mystery with no answers, or proof. If the whole event never happened, then why go to the trouble of getting the film? A confusing resolution as it was written.

19. Rick Sternbach - May 9, 2007

Re: #11 –Yeah, how about that. I could have sworn Earth was on the left side of that shot, but you’re absolutely correct, that was Mercury. However, zipping at Warp 3 toward the sun would have made everything smear like crazy. Visually, they were going nowhere near WF3.


20. Anthony Pascale - May 9, 2007

thanks for the review Rick

it is true that this show does have a lot of firsts, espeically the time travel thing. After years of watching star trek and learning about time travel, Kirk’s bringing on Christopher and giving him a tour seems kind of stupid. It took Spock to point out to him what we all know now about time travel issues. Obviously they didnt have a course in temporal mechanics at the academy in those days, or maybe Kirk skipped it.

I also agree that the Earth looked great, the Sun looked wrong and the F104 was just ok. And of course the edits were brutal, but that is what the itunes downloads and DVDs are for.

and yes Rick will be back for another review later in the summer (as will our other reviewers)

21. Shaye - May 9, 2007

“20 …Wow Anthony!…no offense but to me it did not seem stupid whatsoever that Kirk brought Captain Christopher aboard and showed him the ship,

It gave the brave pilot a well deserved look at the future, and gave me a warm feeling…all tingly inside…for which he, Christopher, showed true gratitude to Kirk and crew by episodes close… yes there were some nice moments that were sliced /hacked out of this episode…guess we have to wait and wait for the HQ DVD’s, or HDNET!

thanks again for the best trek page around.

22. Kevin - May 9, 2007

Yes this episode is rife with odd temporal paradoxes. Not only does Captain Christopher get beamed into himself and forget everything, but for some reason the timeline has now been altered so the Enterprise is gone, and the F-104 does not get crushed by the tractor beam. I can only assume the writter(s) were smoking a little something and were a little out of it when they reached the end of the episode (don’t judge, it was the sixties, everyone was doing it). Other than the weird stuff at the end though, I felt it was great episode.

I love the shot of the Enterprise in orbit over Earth. This conveys a lot more scale than the previous planets shown. Most of them had been much closer to what was seen in the original version, which makes the Enterprise look way too big. This one looks much better.

23. Reign1701A - May 9, 2007

13-Your theory may be correct, and is the most likely explanation. However from an artistic standpoint, I think it would be way more interesting to visually make the various planets the Enterprise visits of different sizes…it’s more in line of the concept of “strange new worlds”. It’s a minor nitpick, and CBS-D has done an excellent job with the planets otherwise.

24. Kirk: The Jack Bauer Of Space - May 9, 2007

Nice to have a review from someone who likes Star Trek. I kinda wish they’d use the wooshy warp-effect ala the feature films. I understand the argument that it doesn’t fit with the 60’s, but still…. when the ship goes to warp, it should be spectacular…

25. paul austin - May 9, 2007

“The only flyby that made me jump was the in-your-face closeup of the saucer and nacelles. I would have pulled back to give the shot a touch more “air.”

I gotta admit these shots give this fanboy a stiffie, i cant wait to see this one and the one from “Amok Time” in all their HDDVD glory.

26. Duane Boda - May 9, 2007

Does anyone have a idea of when (what month) that the first season of Star Trek: Updated will released and how much it might cost?
Also…will it be offered in Blue Ray or HD….that other format?
Which one…? Both?

27. Michael Appleton - May 9, 2007

Considering Paramount has made well over a billion dollars on Star Trek, then it only seems fair and just that they spend WHATEVER IT TAKES to come out with the definitive blue ray box set of TOS with remastered scenes and THE EFFECTS SHOULD BE PERFECT!! What the hell, what kind of a moron is running the ship at that studio anyway? i’m sick of stupidity and short-sightedness getting in the way of what SHOULD be done!!

28. Mark 2000 - May 9, 2007

Don’t care what anyone says. CBS-D doesn’t know how to give an object mass. What aircraft carrier sized object wobbles? In all the other movies and shows, even if the scripts were often times questionable (especially Voy and Ent) I never once didn’t believe that I was looking at big space ships. Not the case 50% of the time with TOSR. That’s a sad shame.

29. steve623 - May 9, 2007

Hooray for Rick Sternbach!

30. Cranston - May 9, 2007

RE: the chronometers running backward.

It’s obvious that the Enterprise chronometer doesn’t keep time on its own, but instead simply reflects signals it receives from some astronomical standard or subspace transmission (no doubt the Federation Office of Chronometric Standards, or some such). It’s analogous to the way that my cell phone displays the time, but only if I’m in reach of the cell network. No doubt such a system became crucial to maintain a common Federation-wide time reference, given the likelihood of thousands of ships accumulating relativistic distortions on their own shipboard systems over the course of many years.

As for why it also seems to work in the 1960s…um….easy…it was a Vulcan system, and has been operating since the second century AD. Or something. Yeah.

31. Jeffrey S. Nelson - May 9, 2007

Review is kinder regarding the effects than I would be. Wobble…wobble…

32. Captain Quirk Trek Modeler - May 10, 2007

Thank you, thank you, thank you Rick! Thank God this review wasn’t done by DB! You’re first paragraph says it all…

” “Tomorrow is Yesterday” is one of those Original Series episodes that is just plain fun, with a few melodramatic moments, an interesting science fiction concept, lurching starship sets (or at least lurching cameras), and a few obligatory fistfights. One could very easily watch it, feel satisfied that this was vintage Trek, and go on to the next episode on a TOS DVD without taking a critical look some forty years after it first aired in 1967.”

I’m so sick of seeing my favorite series looked at through the “social utopian, leftist liberal, pro gay, pro feminism, anti war, pro abortion, anti conservative lense of many of todays Trek fanboy wannbees.

It is a true joy to see someone who has actually accomplished something, in life and in the Trek-verse, give a decent review of an episode, based soley on its merits.

Thank you Rick!

BTW, how do you like the endless debate on the size of the Enterprise……, or maybe the 30 degree offset of the TOS bridge? I have to know, as a professional, don’t you get sick of the endless, mindless debates, that go on and on ad-infinitum? I know I do.

Thanks again.

Captain Quirk Trek Modeler

33. ety3 - May 10, 2007

Sorry, folks, but I just don’t see the point in dumping all over Dennis Bailey. If you don’t like his reviews, tell him in those threads. It just seems overly ungrateful and tacky to let your distaste spill over into others.

Besides, I like Dennis’ reviews. I always get a good laugh when I read them.

34. Cranston - May 10, 2007

#33 — Likewise. And, specifically regarding #32: it’s particularly unhelpful to have bizarre, polarizing, partisan political invective thrown in to what was otherwise a congenial back-and-forth about a really fun episode. Not cool.

35. Dom - May 10, 2007

There are always a few cowardly scumbags behaving like religious fundamentalists on these kinds of fora. Mr Bailey writes fun reviews, whose sense of humour and ability to poke fun at Star Trek shows a deep love for Trek itself.

These miseries just need to grow the hell up!

36. Stanky McFibberich - May 10, 2007

I like this episode. Whether or not an episode has “holes in its logic” or not generally doesn’t bother me that much. It doesn’t matter to me how the chronometers work. I don’t waste time thinking about that. What I like is an engaging story with good performances, and this one has it. Star Trek, even in its lesser episodes consistently gave us great performances and character interaction. With Shatner, Nimoy, and Kelley, you were guaranteed that. Perry did a nice job as the guest star.

My only real quibble is with the wobble. Difficult shot to pull off realistically, I know, but this was glaring. Apologies to all you pro-wobblers out there. :)

37. Doug L. - May 10, 2007

re 15

Reviews can be negative as well as positive, and sometimes both by pointing out whats good and bad. Can’t people around here handle a negative review?

And anyway, IMO Mr. Bailey’s reviews weren’t negative, just thoughtful about what is right and wrong about these eps.

Doug L.

38. Doug L. - May 10, 2007

re 32

I won’t even guess how many people you just offended with that post. But I do agree that debating the position of the turboshaft on the bridge is when nitpicking goes waaaay to far.


39. COMPASSIONATE GOD - May 10, 2007

The overall Remastered scenes were ok, but the wide shot of the 1701 wobbling through the sky was laughable at best, and remined me of childhood, when I used fishing wire to hang my AMT Enterprise from the ceiling. Fine for a kid in yesteryear, terrible for CBS to illustrate the trauma the 1701.

…and what’s up with the 1701’s flyby next to the sun? Like a videogame element pasted near a giant orange blob. Not too pretty or realistic.

40. Ted - May 10, 2007

#36 Stanky —

Engaing story?
Good performances?
Character interaction??!!

Every fanboy knows that these things are meaningless. Star trek is all about knowing that warp 9.9 is the maximum speed, and debating whether or not the two sides had view-screen technology during the Earth-Romulan war. Sheeesh!

What’s all this crap about “engaging stories”!

and #38, Doug L. —

The turboshaft to the bridge is located along the longitudinal centerline of the ship. It’s the rest of the bridge that is “rotated” with respect to the ship’s centerline (i.e. the main view screen is not located along the centerline). ; )

41. neal - May 10, 2007

You know, I never thought of it before: beaming into yourself is not a sensible way to erase memory. That’s a primo nit! — and I shamed to say that I haven’t thought of it until now. Thanks to this review, I can obsess over this for the next few days …

42. Jim J - May 10, 2007

I think everyone ought to just leave the politics alone. The show itself, always one of my favorites. I loved MANY of the effects, had one or two that made me say, “ehhh?”, and a few that made me cover my eyes in shame. Frankly, I”m looking forward to this one being on itunes.

Rick writes a great review and I appreciate the work he did in all the other series. On the other hand, I agree with many who have said, WHY attack DB in this thread of messages? Seems as if some are grinding a huge axe. Though I don’t agree with some things DB says, many things are very fun and humorous. It’s just a different style, people! It’s not a person putting down Trek. I think DB has proved without a shadow of doubt that he loves Star Trek. There are no rules that say we all have to like Trek for the same reasons.

Now, DB, I’d really go to bat for you if you’d clue me in to when Exeter is gonna get done. Yes, I know…soon, real soon. LOL

43. Jim J (remastered thesis writer, revisited) - May 10, 2007

Regarding the wobble and cringe-worthy effects, I can’t help but repost most of one of my posts from a different thread. I’m curious if others feel the same way as me, or if I’m WAYYYY out there….thattaway!!!! LOL

All of this is IN MY OPINION, of course.

The real problem is this: CBS/Paramount kinda slipped this out from under the rug at the last minute and surprised us with it. They did not trumpet it with TONS of media coverage and make it the anniversary event it could have been. Why??? IMO, I still think someone at Paramount, who was all gung ho for Star Trek 11 realized, OMG, it’s the 40th anniversary and we aren’t doing ANYTHING for it? Our movie IS gonna be about TOS and we aren’t doing a thing to celebrate it’s anniversary!!! DOH! “Don’t just stand there jawing, Spock…you and Dr. Wallace get crackin’!” I think that is how it all came to happen. I truly feel the reason they went with CBS-D is because it was close at hand and easier to gear up. This is especially true because of the Okuda’s.

Also, correct me if I am wrong (and I KNOW many of you will)…but I think this is the first type of project like this for a weekly TV series. Add to that, the age of the prints, matching up shots, and so on…it makes for a unique challenge. The Paramount execs probably sat in a room and said, “Hmmm…how much money are we going to invest in this 40 year old TV show?” I’m sure the answer was to “play it safe” and make it as cheaply as they could possibly get away with. Does this mean that the CBS-D team is untalented and a mess? Not at all. It simply means Paramount is STILL Paramount.

Frankly, though the comments posted here get old and tiring, many comments have been true and even helpful to the CBS-D team in getting it right. Look at how much better something like “Journey To Babel” is compared to “Balance of Terror”. They really have improved, even if there are times of inconsistency. I have to disagree with you, #111, about the nacelle caps. I think they are now splendid. Yes, they weren’t right in the beginning. But look back at the original episodes if you really want to see inconsistent nacelle caps…YIKES! We helped get that nacelle message across. I feel that your “lighting issues” will STILL be resolved when it’s in HD. These are being made to look their best in HD. Be that as it may, you do make valid points about certain lights on the ship. However, no one seems in agreement about the nacelle balls. Some think they are right, some think they are not (somehow), and others are not sure about when they are lit or not. Some of us even complained about Daren Doc’s Enterprise and that his “balls were too big.” LOL Frankly, with people you will never please ALL.

CBS-D used to read comments here. I am guessing they still do. The real trick for them is to balance these comments between what is genuine constructive criticism from the mass majority (example-nacelle caps), and what is just some big whiners in a small group who love raining on anyone’s parade they can rain on (how the “E” should look as it penetrates a space ameoba).

The thing is, this project will be what it is thoughout this first syndication run. THEN, the real test begins. DVD’s will come out, sales will be very sluggish, or brisk. Paramount will start thinking….hmmmm…and then the movie will come out. IF the movie BOMBS, the dvd sales are slow…Paramount will say, “It’s dead, Jim.” However, if by some miracle Trek 11 is the highest grossing Trek movie and dvd sales are decent or good, they will say…quick, let’s redo these AGAIN and spend a lot of money this time!!!! Let’s do it the right way so we can capture the spirit of the movie in our old girl, the original series.

THEN, my friends…is when the real debate and “fun” begins……..

(wow, that was long!)

44. Dennis Bailey - May 10, 2007


“Reviews can be negative as well as positive, and sometimes both by pointing out whats good and bad. Can’t people around here handle a negative review?

And anyway, IMO Mr. Bailey’s reviews weren’t negative, just thoughtful about what is right and wrong about these eps.

Doug L.”

Thanks. I’m taking May off and then – joy of joys! – I get to review “Spock’s Brain.” :lol:

45. Scott Gammans - May 10, 2007

Great review, Rick.

I still maintain that CBS Digital needs to fire the ADD-addled editor who is chopping up our beloved series for syndication without the least regard for the flow of the episodes. Classic Trek had numerous iconic set pieces that still resonate to this day, including the Enterprise frantically backing away from the Radioactive Cube of Death in “The Corbomite Maneuver”, multiple scenes in “The Doomsday Machine”, and Captain Christopher’s encounter with the Gray Lady in “Tomorrow Is Yesterday”. All of these sequences are very tightly integrated with the musical score, and when these classic scenes are sliced, diced and chronologically rearranged to squeeze fifty minutes of episode into 20% less space, the flow of these set pieces are ruined.

Syndication edits may be a necessary evil, but CBS Digital needs to pay closer attention to how these beloved episodes are being eviscerated of their original charm.

46. Mike - May 10, 2007

RE: Beaming into yourself.

This has bothered me for probably 35 years, and the whole McCoy injection solution is a good one, but not shown in the ep, so how about this one:

Unspoken to us viewers, the brain patterns of the rebeamed individuals (stored in the transporter) were reverted to their pre-Enterprise state so that they remembered nothing?

Of course, that still doesn’t explain why they had to go back in time to return them, unless the E crew wanted no “mystery” of where those individuals had been. Yeah, that’s it!

But…It still doesn’t explain why there aren’t two Enterprises present at the rebeaming…

DANG! Logic just doesn’t work on this one, but I love it anyway! SOMETHING was done right, even if its hard to say what.

47. YARN - May 10, 2007

Can we start a petition to get them to stop wobbling the CGI Enterprise everytime it hits turbulence?

It’s supposed to be a starship — not an ERTL model.

Wobbles would be more convincing if they were done up close – that is, looking back at the ship from the primary hull you see a huge warp nacelle flex ever so slightly in relation to the rest of the ship — OR — they could give us a wobble sound and show a fixed camera position mounted on the exterior of the ship with the background itself (i.e., the starfield or planet) jigging and jaggin.

Love the shots of the ship in orbit around Earth – nice

48. YARN - May 10, 2007

“Don’t care what anyone says. CBS-D doesn’t know how to give an object mass. What aircraft carrier sized object wobbles?”

I agree, the wobbles should be much more understated, eliminated, or approaced from a different angle (see above).

Hopefully this will be fixed as masterfully as they handled the nacelle issue.

Also, super up-close fly by of the ship (the one where you only see the top sliver of the ship) shot could get old really fast. I hope we don’t start seeing that one every other episode.

49. Greg Stamper - May 10, 2007

#45 Scott Gammans – “Syndication edits may be a necessary evil, but CBS Digital needs to pay closer attention to how these beloved episodes are being eviscerated of their original charm.”

Agreed, someone correct me if I’m wrong but the New HD Transfers, integration of CBS Digital Effects and Editing are being done by “Sun Digital” I believe it is??? I’m not entirely sure. But many of the complaints we have and are directing toward CBS Digital are actually taking place at “Sun”.

50. Lao3D - May 10, 2007

Re: Beaming into yourself:

I’m pretty sure they just beamed the guys into deep space… can’t have time-looping duplicates multiplying like rabbits. ;)

Then the twinkling effect we see at the end is just explainabe as the beaming starting then stopping as the Enterprise passes forward in time.

Grisly, but effective…

51. Captain James B. Quirk Trek Modeler - May 10, 2007

Like I said, I like a review that is based soley on the merits of the episode. Sure there can be good reviews and bad reviews, I just don’t care to read a review that judges a 40yr show by todays standards. You can’t judge a show based on your particular political bent, whether it be social, or otherwise. I think the reviewer that does so shows his bias and immaturity and inability to separate himself from his political viewpoint. I think it’s been very obvious that some seem to review with a political, social slant that does a diservice to the reader, the reviewer and the content. Review the show on it’s merits. That’s exactly what Rick did, without the social commentary and sideways sarcasm.

No need for anyone to get their panties in a bunch, or use the “I’m offended” crutch.

It is what it is. Personally, I can’t wait to see how JJ handles the “Social Commentary” if he even touches it.

52. Michael Appleton - May 10, 2007

“panties in a bunch” I’ve heard of bananas coming in a bunch, but panties?

53. Herbert Eyes Wide Open - May 10, 2007

Hey… I didn’t mean to call open season on any reviewer… and had I been a bit more circumspect, I probably should have issued the disclaimer, “with all due respect to other reviewers…”

My point about Rick’s review was that he took the episode with the time of origin, inherent inconsistencies, allegorical anachronisms (no pun intended)… let’s just say warts and all… and he delivered a wonderful review without some of the political or effects-related “burn them in effigy” commentary.

There are many reviews that have been offered on this website… that have been terrific in markedly different ways… not to sound geeky, but you know… IDIC and all!

I think the thing that struck me about Rick’s review was the cleanness, the equilibrium, and the unabashed affection for this amazing television show. That’s not to say that other reviewers don’t care about Star Trek but too often there is a self-serving agenda that accompanies their ruminations. Again, just my opinion… and i think that’s what this website is about… people expressing their opinions…

54. Doug L. - May 10, 2007

I wish everyone would relax about the bad cuts. Nothing we say or do will impact the editing. CBS-D is doing complete episodes and the editing is a function of fitting ads in through your local affilliate.

When these are released on dvd, (or thru I-Tunes now…) you’ll see the whole unedited episode. The cuts are terrible, but it’s TV. Ever watch a movie on TV??? They are mercilessly butchered. You’re not going to see a good representation of TOS remastered on syndicated TV…EVER.

Shamoy. -DL

55. Jonesy - May 10, 2007

“I wish they would vary the scale of the planets relative to the Enterprise more like this in other episodes…because it seems like every planet the Enterprise visits is about the same size.” – Reign1701A

Hmm. M-Class? Certainly the majority of liveable, oxygen and water rich planets would all be very similar to Earth not always in looks, but at least in size and proximity to the their star.

I can’t friggin’ wait for the Remastered DVD’s. No more of these bad Saturday afternoon trimming and editing. The little bits do kind of expound on the story. Like say, if it takes 30 seconds show-time to travel to the sun, as opposed to “CUT” we’re at the sun. It gives a sense of scale.

But oh well. Definite improvement over the original. Nice and clean. Good looking Earth, fantastic to see Luna hanging in orbit with the Enterprise!

56. Mark - May 10, 2007

I’ve always loved the Time Travel episodes, so despite the paradoxes they all have, including a couple of whoppers in this episode, this is still one of my favorites. I missed it Sunday, so I have to wait until tomorrow night to see the re-run. It sounds like I’ll be disappointed with the “wobble” and the editing, but from the pix and comments, it sounds like I’ll generally enjoy the rest. (The “wobble” should maybe have been more of a “vibration,” showing the E straining, but not “wobbling.”)

In any case, since so many commented on being ‘beamed into yourself,’ I figured I would add my two cents since I don’t think I’ve seen this presented “correctly.” I never thought of it as Capt. Christopher being beamed back into himself, but as the E was moving forward in time (the second time), that he was being beamed back into his craft just after the original beam out. This time, after the slingshot, everything after the point where he was beamed from his plane was different, and they beamed him back just after he was beamed out (not back into himself), and then time continued for him with him not seeing the Enterprise (no, I can’t explain that part, I just have to accept it.) You still have the issue of why the E disappeared at exactly that point, why he didn’t remember the first timeline, etc., but I don’t think we need to assume he was beamed back into himself, just that he was beamed back immediately after the beam out. Make sense?

57. Michael Appleton - May 10, 2007

I’m beaming from your convoluted, but interesting, explanation!

58. Doug L. - May 11, 2007

Well, I finally got to actually watch Tomorrow is Yesterday on DVR, and the only kind thing I can think of to say is…. low budget.

Doug L.

59. Dave - May 11, 2007

Good review. One continuity omission and a missed opportuntiy was with Christoper’s cockpit.
When looking out from his perspective you saw clouds. When the camera pointed at him, the sky outside of the cockpit glass was blue with no clouds.

60. Jack: The Kirk Bauer Of Space - May 11, 2007

Also, I don’t understand why the CBS digital people decided to put in the cheesy wobble when during the atmosphere shot. A really cool atmosphere shot comes to mind as I type this: during the time travel episode in Voyager (yes, Voyager) the atmosphere shot of the ship was really cool. Something along those lines would have been better.

61. mrregular - May 11, 2007

Re: #60
Please forgive me while I cross over to the new Battlestar Galactica for an example how the cloud sequence COULD have been handled.
Galactica, in a surprise tactical move to get the surviving humans away from New Caprica, jumps(FTL)into the atmosphere of the planet. There is a flash and then the ship is seen descending rapidly towards the surface. The exterior of the ship is smoking; aflame from this atmospheric descent.
Now that you get the idea..why couldn’t our Big E be smoking hot and even aflame from the sudden descent into the Earth’s atmosphere? It sure was during the remastered “The Naked Time” when the BIg E was just miles above PSI 2000. That would really add to the impact of the cloud scene above Omaha, Nebraska..a ship under great physical stress..a lot more realistic than that darn wobbling.

62. Cervantes - May 12, 2007

Strong “vibrations” on “E”good. Too much “wobbles” on “E” bad…and ridiculous! The crew inside should shake, not be “blended”.

63. Chuck_N - May 12, 2007

An earlier post commented on the fact that Capt Christopher beamed in standing up instead of the sitting position he had in his cockpit. Here’s another oddity – he wasn’t wearing his parachute! Boy, that transporter system is clever!

64. John Willis - May 14, 2007


Had to put my two cents in here.

Beaming yourself into yourself, in this situation is rather brilliant.

You gotta remember when this show was made, a mere 60 or so years after people woke up to the idea that Time was relative and Dimension an illusion. It all depends on your perspective.

Which is exactly what the beaming was all about, and that long discussion prior to the event.

In fact Captain Christopher did not beam “into himself” and he “did not forget”, he simply lived out his life in a world in which what he recalled never happened. As did the rest of the Enterprise crew.

This is a short post, so I won’t get out the slide rule, but look at the those old diagrams that were popular in say 1972, and again in 1984 . The ones where velocity and time are at right angles and the speed of light cuts across them diagonally. Gosh it seems so freakin obvious, I feel embarrassed mentioning it.

I just don’t get it though, its been 40 years and I “got it “the very first time.
So you gotta be kidding me right?

This was a brilliant way to step around “all” of the paradoxes.

The answer was as it always was, it was true, it all happened, but everyone was insulated from each others timeline simply by their perspective.

To the Enterprise crew they simply “stepped across a room” not across time, the fact that time was a factor was simply an inconvenience.

To them to be sure, the world from which they came still existed, it always existed how could it not?

But if they weren’t very careful, it could become lost to them and they might never see home again. that was the crux of the dilema.

It seemed to funny, all these years to watch my friends get personally involved and wrapped up in “how could they mess with my world, my time line.. they’re going to destroy the entire universe…” wow, what an ego.. the Enterprise crew had a personal axe to grind with that guy.

The Grandfather paradox.. that’a funny one too.. sure you could kill your Grandfather.. but why? It wouldn’t effect you other than killing a person that represents your Grandfather.. and emotional turmoil aside, he might not appreciate it. But these are merely forced ways of trying to think about the space, time, area we live in as an artificial continuous line of events.. sorry, it don’t work that way. Thinking that way is as logical as following the train of thought of a car salesman.

I think it was an wide open mind, a gifted person who wrote the story in the area of time in which they lived.

– jtw

65. jfrancis - May 14, 2007

I cannot believe that no one else has spotted the most glaring error of the entire episode: the Earth is spinning backwards!

If the sun rises in the east and sets in the west, then the rotation of the planet should be COUNTER-CLOCKWISE (when looked at from the “north” pole, or top). Nope, the CBS/P “remaster-ers” gave Earth a clockwise spin, which means the sun now rises in the west and sets in the east. Think about it.

For shame, CBS. For shame.

66. ian - October 27, 2009

the creators of this show (or anyone who’s ever read vonnegut or thought about time travel) should have known that future events are constant and cannot be altered upon going back in time, so sending the captain back immediately would necessarily not have any effect on the future, as future events are constant and unalterable. the episode should have been over in 5 minutes and spock’s “logic” is absolutely wrong… i just couldn’t get over it so i’m not a huge fan of the episode. is represented by Gorilla Nation. Please contact Gorilla Nation for ad rates, packages and general advertising information.