Salt Up The Man Trap Preview

The Remastered "The Man Trap" airs this weekend (note updated station/air time guide)
Preview courtesy STARTREK.COM  

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Can’t resist, never done it before….


Also, preview looks pretty cool.

Got a kick out of the Morphing effect !!!

This has good writing, but that salt monster is hilarious !!!

Part of the charm of Star Trek is seeing things like that.

The first McCoy episode, and the first episode aired.

Fun !!!

can anyone confirm this was the first episode ever broadcast?
the restoration looks resplendant, and note that it accurately predicted the popularity of ambien in the future (“you’ll sleep”)
also, i recall my mother telling me i would end up looking like the salt vampire if i didn’t lay off the saltines before dinner. scared me.

I don’t like the morphing effect, at least as seen in this preview. It looks very clunky, particuarly (for the McCoy-Mrs. Crater transition) since the angle on the surrounding set changes as well.

In this case, I much prefer the original fade-in version of the effect. In the story itself, the salt vampire isn’t actually a shape shifter per se; it simply somehow (psychically?) is able to trick other people’s perception into seeing something else. Remember in the first scene, where McCoy, Kirk, and the soon-to-be-dead crewman all see different women simultaneously? In that sort of context, the ripple/fade-in seems more appropriate to me to signify that perceptual “clouding” effect.

I hate to say it, but the salt monster kind of reminds me of an ex-girlfriend!

#4: “can anyone confirm this was the first episode ever broadcast?”

Yep. I saw it.

NBC made a big deal out of launching several of their new series a week earlier than usual that year – the programming seasons were *that* rigid by custom. Trek was one of several new shows that they “sneak previewed.”

I found the show (in black-and-white, BTW) confusing and a bit dreary. It took me a couple of episodes to actually go completely crazy over it. I suppose it says something, though, that I remember that first episode so clearly.

Originally aired September 8th, 1966

6th in production order, 1st on the Season 1 DVD set.

The salt critter scared me as a kid watching it in the late 60’s…but I loved how Galaxy Quest spoofed scene with Kirk and Spock in this episode, where they are hiding next to a boulder dodging phaser fire while Kirk pops up and cracks off a shot.

#5. I agree. The morphing effect looks lazy since half of the bulk-head is morphing along with the creature. But I guess that’s the sacrifice they had to make since they didn’t have any clean plate shots of just the background. Although, if they really wanted to, they could have drawn the missing areas of the background in Photoshop and then rotoscoped the creature, but that would have taken a lot of time.


I’m with you…the sight of the creature at the end gave me nightmares for months after I first saw it at the tender age of about 6 or 7 (somewhere around 1972 or so). For more than a few years thereafter, I had to either avoid this episode, or at least turn away from the TV set when the creature finally reveals itself :) …

And don’t forget that incredibly eerie and creepy music…I’m sure that didn’t help me get any more sleep back then either…

The “lazy morphing” that extends to the backdrop isn’t necessarily wrong. People’s perceptions were changing, not the creature’s physical form. Maybe projecting a new image included how the perceived form sat against the background, a sort of refracting effect.

Feel free to dig up a real salt vampire and prove me wrong.

“Feel free to dig up a real salt vampire and prove me wrong.”

lol – that’s great


Agreed. It reminds of the shapeshifter girl on Heroes last year– when she changed the entire space around her seemed to warp and fluctuate too.

This is the episode Shatner refers to as “Bones Gets a Jones.”
It’s hard to remember not knowing the background of these characters, but Kirk isn’t very vibrant in this one. And McCoy is completely out of character, as a lovesick schoolboy. Plus, Spock is still in his early “screamin’ Vulcan” stage “It’s killing the Captain!”

Still, great Uhura moment near the top and some genuinely creepy bits.

I can take or leave the morphing. The pay-off would have to be a better salt vampire, and we’re not gonna git that. I wonder how they built all those buildings in the desert with suction cups all over their fingers. OSHA would have a field day.

That salt vampire is a classic design. Put some quivering movement, some little teeth and some slime on those fingertip suckers and she would be ready for the 21st century.

Yeah, the “morph” is terrible. I know it would take a long time to roto the start frame (the crewman) and roto the end frame showing the result, but it’s so quick that I don’t think it would be that hard. For all of CBSD’s fine work I really don’t like this. No, CBSD lurkers, I am not a layperson. No, CBSD lurkers, I am not a playa hata. I just am adding my two cents work. I mean, I freaking LOVE the work you guys/gals have done so far, especially since you have your “new” model of the Enterprise, but these “morphs” look like something that comes free with Imovie, or Premiere, or similar off the shelf consumer products. I don’t see it as “lazy morphing,” but “just the not best choice” morphing.

Any CBSD lurkers care to pop on and talk about the editorial/creative choice made here for this effect work? If the powers that be are slave driving for HD/DVD releases, please let them know that this is gonna be their last shot at these shows. We don’t expect another stab at TOS, do we? Heck, we have the mastered to video FX work of TNG, DS9, and VOY to contend with. NTSC video at that! ENT is the only one that might hold up over time, and we only really like season four of that one anyway!!!

Haven’t the phasers on the planet’s surface been enhanced? Narrower blue beams?

Hell, I just hope that they even bother to *show* “Man Trap” this weekend here in the capital of the free world. The 10 PM Saturday night timeslot that lists for “Star Trek” in Washington DC on WDCA is NOT correct. According to WDCA’s website (and my TiVo), it’s *supposed* to be 12 AM Sunday morning, but our craptastic affiliate keeps pre-empting Trek for “professional” wrestling.

Remastering episodes almost makes me feel as though Shat and Nimoy are still young, great actors…and the series is still continuing.
Very cool morphing effects. ^^

Wasn’t there an actor in this episode who holds the distinction of being the first redshirt to die, and who also turned up in “First Contact” as maybe the bartender in the holodeck (“Nicky? Hasn’t been here in months”)? I could swear I read that someplace.

The salt creatures main ability is when McCoy sees her as young and Kirk sees her as an older woman at the same time. Salty phermones.

One of my all time favorites. The creepy music really makes it work. I like the morphing effect they did here.

I have to say this is the best preview I’ve seen yet. It sells the episode very well.

“It’s killing the Captain, shoot QUUUICK!!!!!”

homelite wrote:

> can anyone confirm this was the first episode ever broadcast?

Yes, this was the first episode broadcast. With our new 1966 RCA color television, we tuned in that night, and when the show’s teaser popped on after the NBC peacock, we couldn’t understand why the sky was red. We kept trying to adjust the t.v.’s hue control to make the sky blue. :-D

As an episode that delves into horror, I found it to be particularly effective as a child and now as an adult.

The morph effect is dreadful and so 80’s (can anyone say “Williow”) – another great episode that the CBSD team decides to underwhelm us with.

I doubt these are the final morphs. The don’t even have the eyeballs keyframed to each other. These look like they were done in a few minutes by the promo editor. Morphing software has been around for a long time and it’s way too easy to do better than what’s in this promo.

Bring back the Salt Vampire.

right from the preview page:
“This preview for the remastered version of “The Man Trap” shows new “morphing” effects and the improved image quality apparent in all the restored episodes.”

This one scared me as a kid as well. in fact, that’s the reason NBC went with it first.

Although Corbomite Maneuver was the first regular episode filmed (not including WNMHGB) NBC thought it was too slow and cerebral to start out with. Audiences of the day usually equated sci-fi with monsters and so NBC decided to kick of with one that fit the bill.

The Corbomite Maneuver was too cerebral? Now that’s one that I’ve never heard before, and one that I heartily disagree with… TCM was a rollicking good space yarn, and arguably contained more actual star trekking than “The Man Trap”.

“Haven’t the phasers on the planet’s surface been enhanced? Narrower blue beams?”

Actually, I seem to recall that the phasers in this episode actually looked good when they were done in ’66. These are actually how they looked originally.

I find it odd that they didn’t look this good for the rest of the series.

Am I recalling this ep incorrectly, or did the phaser shot that stunned Prof. Crater sound like some low-budget Western’s sound effect of a low caliber bullet plinking off of a tin plate?

Another episode that really gave me the creeps as a kid!

I thought the ugly alien/monster costume was very well done, and it still looks kind of scary even today.(though the “suction cup hands” kind of make me laugh now)

Overall one of the better episodes from the first season, IMHO.

Mike :o

PS: I thought the original phaser shot, where the doctor was slightly “stunned” on the planet was a cool effect. I don’t think this “stun effect” was ever duplicated in quite the same way again.

When I first saw this episode, I remember wondering what must have hurt more….being stunned by that phaser, OR having my head and body “smacked hard against that rock”, as a result of the phaser shot. Ouch!!

“Remastering episodes almost makes me feel as though Shat and Nimoy are still young, great actors…and the series is still continuing.”

I agree. Wholeheartedly.

I always wondered about the origins of the salt creature. It’s one of my favourites

i think there was a small-framed woman inside the Salt Vampire suit wasn’t there? i wonder if she’s working the convention circuit? :)

Yeah, I hear her nickname is “Lot’s wife” because she’s a pillar of the salt vampire community!

There are two morph shots in this promo. In the first, it doesn’t look like the wall is morphing along with the actors. In the second morph it does. Hmmm… let’s hope the second effect was just the product of a lazy promo editor.

I agree with Kevin that the phaser effects never looked better than they did in this episode. I downloaded the original show on itunes and it looks pretty darned good, even with the monster fade effects.

I liked the new morph effect, no problem here. I thought the image of mccoy rising from the bed a little deceptive , as if luke skywalker was using a jedi technic behind the scenes…ya gotta believe me!

Since the guys at CBS-D don’t wanna talk to me no more… :) I figure It’s about time to talk about their new stuff… I saw the trailer, and was disappointed a bit at the new “morph”… so I did a quick test to “1966-ify” it…
I’ve posted it at my trekenhanced site… the first post in quite a few months… I’ve neglected trek for at least 10 weeks or so. I should be ashamed. lol

I don’t see any problem with the new morph. In fact I like it a lot better than what we had before. A vast improvement in my opinion. I was worried they wouldn’t touch it, b/c they touch so little of the live action shots. This is actually a pleasant surprise. The second one looked off, but I think that was editing for the trailer. I doubt the background will morph too.

The after effect of the stun hit on Crater was slowed down dialogue – creepy.

I bet the effects in the trailer are final. Can’t recall one where it wasn’t so.

Hey Daren,

I like your dissolvo-morph effect there. I just hope that the actual show has a more refined morph than shown in the episode preview: That morph is just plain awful, boring and uninspired, which is, sadly, the way things seem to be going for this whole remastered effort.

I do Morphing in my studio all the time. This is very lazy.

All you need is a still from the start frame + a still from the end frame, pull our the actors in Photoshop and fill in the bulk heads behind.

Then you Morph the actors and overlay them back onto the back ground. You can even morph the back ground separately if light changes. I’d say about a half hour to do! This has got to be a promo only shot or things are going down hill in CBS Digital.

Ok, I don’t know about the first morph, but the second morph in the preview is OBVIOUSLY done by the promo. people. I don’t think a monster changes into both people and a background. That’s just me.

The phaser shots look good in this episode. I’m sure that because this was one of the first 10 productions, they used a more expensive way of implementing the phaser effect, and as time went along…

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: There is an irony to the fact this remastering project has time and budget restraints… much like the original production back in the 60’s.

Unfrotunately, we also have to rmeember that the main purpose of Remastered is NOT to fix the effects, but simply to go HD with TOS. From what I’ve seen of the Remastered Project promo, it almost sounds as though half way through the process somebody said “Ya know, why not fix some of the effects?” (This could be an explanation of why some of this does seem so rushed). Perhaps one day, we will get a TOS where the effects ARE the main focus, and a complete reproduction of ALL the musical scores as well (capturing the true essence of the Fight Theme, or whatever its called).

As for the TNG-era shows… lets let them finish TOS first. But I can’t imagine too much needing to be done for any of those shows. Maybe add the hull/nacelles of 1701-D to the outside window of the conference lounge, a docking pylon outside the windows of the upper level of the promenade in DS9.

Yeah… kinda dissapointed in the morphing. The morph below was done with freeware, and I think it looks better…lol

Anthony, I know I keep asking, but is there any chance of a follow-up interview with CBS Digital yet?…where maybe some of us here could suggest some questions for you to ask the team… ;)

Just to add my tuppeth in about the morph – I think it’s a shame that an effect has been used which is just so un-1960’s. Most of the other updates would have been possible at the time with enough time and money, but the morph in the promo is just really 80’s and video-y.

They’d have been better leaving it as a cross-dissolve.

Why can’t people stop complaining about Remastered? There’s more to this that just money and transferring TOS into HD. I can actually sit and watch Star Trek with my 11-year old son without him laughing his butt off at the old special effects. (Unfortunately, the poor kid grew up on the Star Wars prequels.) Before Remastered came along, I made an effort to get him to watch classic episodes. He couldn’t make it through a complete show simple because of the now-laughable effects. But in the last year, we’ve enjoyed The Doomsday Machine, The Immunity Syndrome and many others that highlight the value of wonderful story telling and truly great characters. Even the simplicity of a blinking Gorn somehow made that rubber suit more palatable to my fledgling Star Trek fan. I’m looking forward to watching The Man Trap with him, knowing he won’t exit the room since the I Dream of Jeannie-style morphing has been updated.

Keep it going CBS-D…some of us appreciate what you do!

(Please, don’t even start the “I could do it better on my lap top” posts. It may be true…but my son and I will never see your work. We’ll be watching what Paramount puts on the air…and we’re happy to have it.)

I think NBC started with this episode instead of “Corbomite Maneuver” because they wanted to show an alien planet, and not just a starship interior.

And they ought to add this on the DVD as a bonus…