“The Tholian Web” Screenshots and Video [UPDATED]

The Tholian Web gets a major CGI facelift…

SFX Video


New and Old


The Enterprise searching for the Defiant
The Defiant is found
Approaching the Defiant
The Defiant phases out… with Kirk
The Enterprise trying to hold position
Comander Loskene approaches
Loskene fires on the Enterprise
The Enterprise returns fire
Loskene’s vessel is disabled
A second Tholian ship
The two begin to weave a web

Weaving on a diagonal

The web gets closer to compleation
The web gets closer to compleation
The web is nearly complete
Thrown clear of the web
Waiting for Kirk
Heading home

Assorted Shots

Spock has lost Kirk

Tholian Comander Loskene

Chekov loses his mind

A silent moment to reflect on the loss of Captain Kirk

The Engineer goes nutty

Spock reaches out to Kirk

Kirk made it before his oxygen ran out

Kirk prefers a "crowded universe"

Last Orders?

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On a lot of these shots, the originals looked better. I hate to say it, because I’ve been a big supporter and fan of this remastering effort, but Tholian Web always was one of the better VFX episodes in the original series. I liked the original approach shots of both the Enterprise and the Tholians. The only shots of the remaster that I found to be better were the phaser deflection of Loskene’s vessel, the shot of the Enterprise in Interphase (the darkened Enterprise in the void without starlight was a neat shot, versus the original shot which retained the normal lighting but without a starfield), and the second to last shot of the Enterprise leaving, where we saw the underside angle.

That being said, it’s always fun to see the brightened colors from the original celluloid film. The Season Three uniforms seemed so much brighter already, so they look extra colorful in this episode. I’m also glad that the original Loskene shot was left in place. It was an intimidating shot and made the reveal of the complete appearance of the Tholian body in Enterprise all the more fascinating.

One more comment…. I wonder how they were able to do the rotoscoping of the original Kirk in space between the Enterprise and Tholian Web shot against the new CGI Tholian Web. That was pretty neat to see…

Again the colors in the original are more vibrant that TOS-R. Lighting was crisper in the original.

Pics look good! I think the Enterpirse looks awesome here, maybe its just because its been a few weeks but it just look very good to me. Looking forward to the vfx reel, curious to see that unlit shot of the ship and that flyby from the bottom of the hull.

Nice job as far as I can tell, but as mentioned the originals were quite good as well.

I am quite impressed. I was a little unsure of how good of a remaster this would be, but it was quite good. This is a considerable leap from the first few remasters. CBS-D improves in quality every time. I still, however, think that the deflector dish could be just a bit more colorful. Not quite as colorful as Eden FX’s digital model in the Enterprise episodes “In a Mirror Darkly” parts one and two, but more colorful still. I can’t wait to see next week’s episode!

The screen captures of the TOS-R episode of the Tholian Web are very dark. What happened?

In terms of the image quality, the originals look more remastered than the remastered shots.

The remastered shots are very dull and opaque.

Plus, while the new CGI space shots in general are cool, the original filming model of the Enterprise looks a hell of a lot better than the CGI Enterprise. No matter how closely or exactly the CGI model matches the details and specs of the original, the original looks and feels much more realistic and has solid depth and mass to it. The original looks more like a real spaceship.

By the way, I say that the eyes on Commander Loskene have been “improved” in this TOS-R outing.

Why are the remastered shots so much darker? That’s disappointing to me.

Mike :o

One of the points of CGI is to do things that models can’t. A model can’t do these complex moves in such a smooth manner without it looking like a model. Why people say the original looks better is strange to me. it was good for its time, but you can still tell its a model. The digital CGI Enterprise looks much better to my eyes, but that’s just my opinion.

The original 1960s effects looked pretty good, and were also relatively sharp and free of dirt since they weren’t recycled stock shots. However, there’s much, MUCH more blue spill on the model than usual because of the rush to finish. The CG effects are definitely cleaner but this is an episode where you’d have to compare DVD or HD versions to really appreciate the upgrade. On an analog broadcast the new effects look darker more than they look sharper.

With this episode, if they’d been able to digitally recomposite the old photographic effects elements it would have looked just as good as CG. The CG has the kinks out of it so it’s fine too. As long as both versions are always available I’m happy.

Well, I’m sure many of us have fond memories of this episode, but, having just watched it for the first time in years, I have to say that the writing is pretty weak in comparison to the others remastered so far. The premise is interesting, but the dialog is very awkward. And is it just me, or do Shatner and Nimoy avoid direct eye contact throughout the entire episode?

I prefer the old phaser effect to the new one, the glow around the beams make it look so much better in my opinion. Everything else looked really great….although major props go out to the original team of FX people…this episode’s original FX hold up to this day.

Great episode. Well done.

Loved the remastered version. I don’t see a huge travesty here as far as anything they did. It looked great!

DARK,DARK DAAARRRKKKKKK! It must look great in a dark CGI room with no lights on, but man these shots are hard to see. They look great though. So have a simulated living room to get these shots perfect before airing. Please brighton up when put on Blue-Ray/HD-DVD.

Thank You

Well I feel vindicated. This episode is the suck. The tholian ships looked like cardboard and the phaser shot with the ship flipping around was comical. When the to tholian bump asses and bounce its like someone told a joke in the room. My wife laughed out loud and couldn’t believe these were new shots. She actually giggled harder than when she saw the top heavy, crotch tight space suits. Shame on you, CBS Digital. You’ve done so much better in the past.

I hated it! Wanted to see the original effects. They need to work on the CGI model….it just looks plastic, very visually “flat.” Scrap trying to duplicate teh original model, make it what it could have been if is was being made from scratch today!

Seen on my 36-inch television, the episode looked great (good lighting on the ships). However, the television station here kept fiddling with the brightness for the interior scenes. The Remastered outer space screenshots posted above are way too dark and not indicative of what was shown on t.v..

Looking at the comparison, the original 60s FX for the episode hold up great, and really look “clean” and free of artifacts. I thought the remastering job was very well done, but this is an episode where the original effects shots look pretty damn good too.

15: I just turned up my Brightness control and all was well.

Grain in the film contributes greatly to the perceived realistic look and feel of ships in space. CGI bypasses that step. Therefore CGI is capable of more realism by removal of film grain. To my eyes, CGI is better. I can safely dump my TOS DVDs.

It looked damn fine on my TV.

The Enterprise is the best looking Federation ship ever.

Yes, it did look darker than the non-remastered version, but unlike some, I am not going into a panic attack over it. Who knows what it will look like in HD, which is the whole point of the remastering to begin with? Even on my VHS recording of a crappy signal I noticed the better color, contrast, and details right away.

And I could see that Kirk looked just like William Shatner! ;)

Oh, as long as this is a complaint forum, I can throw in this: To Whom it May Concern-PLEASE remix the opening theme and balance out the singer with the instrumentals.

I thought this was a better CGI rendering of the Big E than previous efforts by CBS/Paramount…. Doomsday Machine also was a cut above. But comparing the screen shots in this article again reconfirms that the original model still looks more realistic consistently in episode to episode.

As stories go, this is kind of weak…there’s a space anomaly, Kirk is sucked into it, the crew starts going mad and then we cure the sickness and fix the engines. Good thing there was this mysterious hole in space we could pop into, and make all that work the Tholians did useless. And the transporter magically drags Kirk along so we can bring him back aboard. I also think that McCoy’s argument with Spock is unconvincing; I would’ve believed it more if they were just starting to work together, but by now they’ve been on this ship together for a few years.

Also, think about it…what the heck is the Tholian web, anyway? I guess a Tholian commander would disable the enemy’s engines, call in another ship, and then they’d spend several hours building the web. If the enemy managed to repair himself in time, he could cruise on out an incomplete side of the “fishing net” and all that effort was wasted.

Given that a partially disabled Enterprise was able to knock a Tholian ship around, it seems to me that if I was a Tholian, I would not want to get the Federation upset at me, in case I ran into a fully operational Federation starship. What would I do in that little ship if they hit me with a photon torpedo??

I can’t believe the sub-par quality of most of the “new” shots above (SFX and otherwise) is NOT due to the screengrabber screwing up. They are way too dark, muddy and reddish. The 40 year old shots look crisp and well-balanced in comparison. Is this an April 1st joke already???

My dad had an old saying, “Don’t change horses midstream.” The new effects look terrible at times. The original effects although limited did the job. I als am wondering why the cgi enterprise on Enterprise looks better than Kirk’s enterprise. At times it looks like NCC 1701 will float away.

The new screen shots here always look darker than they do when I watch our broadcast. Don’t worry about that, folks.

I agree with the earlier post that they did tweak Loskene slightly. His eyes do indeed look different to me – I don’t know if it is CGI or just the improved color, etc. What I really took note of when I watched the remastered version was how he shifted his head slightly as he talked, which I don’t recall seeing in the original years ago – unless I just missed them in the old broadcast signal.

The old ship shots were some of the very best in the original series, but they have enormous bluescreen spillover – unless you blame that blue look on the interphase and/or the Tholian Web! But the old shot of the Enterprise breaking free always looked terrible with its miserable lighting – the new one is very lovely with a properly darkened ship. But I’m sure glad the Big E is near a sun in almost every shot of the series. :-)

So the remaster did a nice job cleaning up those problems. And the revised phaser fire on the Tholians was very dramatic. I, for one, LOVE the new and consistent ship phaser shots and how the Tholian ship reacted when its shields were broken. The new ships are much more detailed, but look strangely two-dimensional from the side. I did like the front view of the new ship, but I would have preferred using a ship design even closer in modeling and lighting to the old one, but with a few tiny windows and rear engines thrown in to give them some size.

I also prefer the old shots of the Defiant with its ghostly glow, whereas the new Defiant has a surface effect of green instead of a diffuse appearance. The Defiant’s exterior coloration just doesn’t make much sense in either version – why doesn’t the Enterprise show some amount of that effect as it slips into interphase? And Spock’s line about how they can see it but it gives off almost no sensor readings is pretty lame – it is obviously giving off a lot of EM radiation in the visible part of the spectrum, which sensors can pick up just as well as a human optic nerve – or a viewscreen camera.

There was one new shot of the Big E where the primary hull plating was very noticeable – more tint changes on the different panels than I would prefer, but that is just personal preference and didn’t harm the show at all.

So I’d call this remaster a mixed bag. Most of the new effects are good, but the Defiant surface coloration looks cheesy and the side view of the Tholian ships looks too two-dimensional.

#1 – Tony, I agree with you completely. They really ruined this episode with some very poor shots. The CBS team seems almost incapable of nailing shots of the Enterprise from behind. They also choose the worst angles. This can be seen in the side-by-side comparison photos—“Approaching the Defiant” and “The web gets closer to completion.” This latter one is the worst. I wish they would delete this shot from all episodes. It looks awful and lacks believability.

Yeah, for all of you who say how fantastic the original effects are (and they were for their time period), check out the last four comparison shots. Is it any wonder that people bitch and argue about the color of the damned ship?
1. “The web is nearly complete”-BLUE, baby…BLUE!
2. “Thrown clear of the web”-WHITE, dammit, WHITE!
3. & 4. “waiting for Kirk” & “heading home” -OMG, it’s grey!!

Thank god for the consistency in the new shots…and I’ll say this again to emphasize what others have said: the Tholian ships are NOT the same as on Enterprise OR on Star Trek. It’s a combination PLUS new added together. Looked great to me!

It wasn’t any darker on my TV than any of the other shows I watch.


It was just as bad as I feared and worse they even tweaked the colours to a dullness!

The original Emmy Award winning 1969 FX are still light years ahead of the cbs/cgi horror they inserted into this clasic episode and they truly ruined this episode with some very poor shots of both the Enterprise and the Defiant.

The new shots of the Tholian Ships and web looked like a saturday morning cartoon from the 1970’s.

Rate this one a D –

It is embarrassing.


“Given that a partially disabled Enterprise was able to knock a Tholian ship around, it seems to me that if I was a Tholian, I would not want to get the Federation upset at me, in case I ran into a fully operational Federation starship. What would I do in that little ship if they hit me with a photon torpedo??”

Jeff, just watch the first 5 minutes of “In a Mirror, Darkly” part2. The fully functional defiant tears through the Tholians.

This was never a great episode to begin with-with exception the FX shots. They were the best for 1969.
The old shots are some of my favorites. I like the shot of the Enterprise from the rear of the ship while facing the Defiant. It is beautifully lit and has movement to make the old model look real.
The CGI cleans up little problems from old 60’s FX but the movement of the ship is too “quick.” I mean, the movement of the TOS ENT ( the close up shots) gives the viewer the sense of the immense size of the ship.
And I still think the ENT is to dark. Yes, it’s in space and it’s dark in space, but hell, the thing makes nosies in space ( phasers, etc) where there can’t be any sound. So brighten that thing up a bit.

Ok, I will agree that the CGI shot of the ENT in the dark void was pretty cool. Now you know what it will look like in the Immunity Syndrome.

I seem to recall that the original Loskene image was static, unless I’m remembering incorrectly or was drunk at the time: in the new version, there are very subtle head movements. Can anyone help me out with my flawed/damaged memory? Are the head movements an add?

One tiny fix I would have liked to have seen: ghost Kirk’s appearance on the engineering deck, and his vanishing with a “pop!” rather than the smoother quick dissolves with every other appearance. The “pop-in-pop-out” appearances bring back unfortunate memories of “Bewitched” more than anything, particularly with the harp pluck on Kirk’s disappearance: I halfway expect to see Paul Lynde leering over Scotty’s shoulder on the reaction shot.

I too noticed what seems to be a different picture quality overall, and I’m wondering if the original film source for the HD “The Tholian Web” transfer might be a generation or two removed from other remastered episodes: perhaps they had no surviving original negative elements and had to make a transfer from an interpositive safety print, which might explain the increased darkness and contrast. My theory, for what it’s worth.

I think this is an example of CBS failing and succeeding at the same time.

Without seeing others comments, my reaction is that the new camera angles are good, Enterprise overall looks pretty good. Nice angles on the ship and some nice renderings of the panels.

But the new Tholian ship is too modern, too infuenced by the recent work on Enterprise. And some shots, the Enteprise’s panelling is too CGI looking, flat and drab.

The Tholian ship is way too modernized. The new design at the nose section is awful. When it was hit by the Enterprises phaser, I didn’t like how it suddenly flew back.

And the worst effect is the web itself. It’s lost it’s sparkle and shine. It looks like a video effect from an earlier crude CGI software.

Perhaps this was a April Fools Joke?

Forgot to add that their mission is to create new CGI effects that are not too far advanced to mach 1960’s live action. The way the Defiant was animated was cool, but the fading out was kinda good and bad, sort of the way it could have looked in 1969.

Overall, I was happy with this one. The Enterprise looks great in several shots, but they can’t seem to get the aft view quite right. I really like the Tholian flinging back after the Enterprise’s phasers hit. It gives you an idea how powerfull the E’s phasers are.

I don’t get how people think the originals shots are better. In the originals the E looks composited in and grainy, plus the there is so much blue screen spill that it screams of phonyness. For the time the orignal artists did a great job, but these new shots are superior.

I loved the shot of the E in the dark void, Bravo CBS!!

The original Emmy Award winning 1969 FX are still light years ahead of the cbs/cgi horror they inserted into this clasic episode
Some of you are just trying too hard with this April Fools joking.

Only thing that looked “off”, were the Tholian ships, and that’s due to the design and not the actual effects used.

I watched The Doomsday Machine a while ago and as I thrilled to all the wonderful new imagery I was reminded yet again what a gift it is to have that classic episode rendered new and exciting once more. I thought of all the great episodes yet to be remastered and began dreaming of all the fabulous possibilities. And then came last night.

I can’t believe what some of you guys will not just settle for but actually praise.

The Tholian Web was a bitterly disappointing throw back to CBS-D doing and giving the very least they can possibly do and give and still maintain any credibility. How can such minimal and miserly efforts be so enthusiastically received? If changing nothing makes the folks at CBS-D your heroes, then why not raise me upon your shoulders? I have had the “restraint” and “good taste” to change not a single frame of TOS. Aren’t I great?

I recall from interviews of the period the original creators expressing their sincere laments they could not quite budget a far shot of the Enterprise completely surrounded by web. They really wanted that shot. Forty years later they still don’t get it; and neither do we.

That Shot of the Enterprise In the Dark Void was so Friggin Sweet, Very much like a couple of the TMP shots of the Enterprise. The Underside flyby was the most amazing model shot I have yet seen. For those jello heads who say the E only looks good from certain angles, please take out the morphine drip. The level of detail on a bigger screen was just awesome!!!!!! I do agree with some of the other posters that the original work on this episode (The Defiant and web shots) were equally good and that aft shot of the E approaching the fading Defiant is still to this day hard to beat. All in all though a terrific effort with a couple of wow moments. Can’t wait to see this on HD-DVD.
Bravo to CBS and for your efforts Marta will now perform a most special dance to allure you.

I’m glad the side by side shots are here. True the original tholian design was a bit low on the detail, but look at the rich colors all over it! It looks devilish and menacing. CBS could have come up with a clever way to reportay those vibrant colors – like a hull skin that shimmered and glowed. But they took the easy way out by pretty much copying the ENT ships. Its really sad.

I’m with the majority – most of the original shots look a lot better. This one was not worth the money.

The e looks fine, except the way they are lighting it looks very “DS9”, “Enterprise” style. DARK.
But I actually prefer the original tholian ships.
By being less detailed they seemed way more mysterious.
And yes, that angle from the back of the “e” just looks like a videogame for some reason.

After the Doomsday Machine I feel that the CBS-D Team has been really slipping on some of the shots steadily . They nearly lost me half way though this outing. The angled shots as they approach the Defiant were awful . If the ship was drifting shouldn’t it be moving at least off axis slowly? Its just moves without rotation.
The close up shot was great.

Still wasn’t buying the Enterprise’s new armoured plating either. Make the effects consistent. if the effects cannot be consistent then whats the point?
its just one model that could be used over and over again. Even if the model is CGI. I agree the ship looked better when the Enterprise was “thrown” out of the Web.

The Tholian Ship didn’t have to look like the ENT counterparts either. If that show is in the originals past 100 years or so. Why does it look almost the same here?

What was more disappointing was that effects shots that could have been touched up were not even looked into. I gave the whole outing a C

What I did like was that the show overall is making the colors more vibrant and alive and that has been consistent with each remastered episode. they seem brand new even if the show was aired in the late 1960’s.

I didn’t realize this till now (after seeing the original billions of times) but when the Enterprise is first attacked you see McCoy and Nurse Chapel in Sickbay bracing the table. Five seconds later he arrives on the bridge telling Spock he should get the ship out of there. So theirs less than a 5 second walk to the Bridge… you gotta be kidding.

#37, as I stated in my earlier post, I agree with you. I do not Loskene moving his head at all in the original episode. If we’re right, then the SFX reel incorrectly omits that subtle work by CBS Digital.

^ Loskene did move his head side to side in the original. What you see of Loskene in this remastered version is exactly what you see in the non-remastered version.

#47 (Redshirt) Another similar oddity. Scotty is seen trying to beam Kirk aboard just prior to the Tholien attack; and moments later, he’s back in engineering as the attack begins.

Those turbo lifts must be amazingly fast!

Or maybe he beamed himself back to Engineering…?? LOL!!!!!

There were TWO new models of Tholian ships! Look!