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10341Re: [probe_control] And all that Search...

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  • LambuLambu@aol.com
    Dec 22, 2013
      Geoff,

      Making sense to people: Great! I need all the help I can get these days thanks to the main meds I'm on.

      Graiman vs. Devon: Point taken. Although, I also remember Mulhare as Captain Gregg in the 1960s show' The Ghost and Mrs. Muir'. He was much younger, and played a ghost, but his mannerisms and characterisation were a lot like Devon's. Makes me wonder just how much of Mulhare's personality was put into his characters.

      Cultures - UK vs, US: I think we each stereotype the other more than anyone realizes. In the US, they tend to portray British as super-dry-witted or humorless, very serious characters. In the UK you seem to portray Americans as "Mr. Waldorf Salad" - loud-mouthed, obnoxious, or some overzealous detective or gang member ready to shoot anything that moves, or a whiny "Peri"-type (as portrayed by Nicola Bryant during Colin Baker's run as the 6th Doctor) who complains about everyone and everything. I think it's a 'poke fun at the neighbor across the pond' thing.
      We've seen enough British programming (documentaries and such) to know that not everyone is a stubborn 'Downton Abby' persona, or a thickheaded Basil Fawlty. We've seen real British people doing real things. My daughter spent last spring in the UK at Uni of Bath and in her off time travelled all over: London, Cardiff, she even made a trip to Ireland and to Scotland to visit a friend she knew in high school who is now working in one of the Scotland schools.
      "The Evil One" confirmed that what we see in the documentaries and some travel shows is how "real" British people are. She also said that, during her time as a student teacher, almost every class had one student ask her the same three questions: 1) Do you know Justin Beiber? 2) Are you part of a 'gang'? and 3) Do you own a gun? (She says that bit on how the British view "Yanks" is a "tad bit shaded" - her words - and for the record her answers to those questions could almost be found in a British program like 'Downton Abby': "One... no; two... no; three... why should you care, and by the way, have you completed the assignment I've given you?")
      She said those questions weren't limited to students. People she met in pubs, once they heard her speak and learned she was a "Yank", would ask her those same three questions, so I think you may not know us as well as you think you do.

      1983 KITT: Now that you mention it, I think the original hero KITT is on display at the "Star Cars" exhibit somewhere in L. A. (or wherever that museum is). And yes, I am aware that "The Hoff" only drove KITT when he was entering or leaving a parking spot, or when KITT was towed on that flatbed. Any driving scenes with the hero KITT had a professional stunt driver behind the wheel. It's an insurance issue, both for the actor and the vehicle. The hero KITT also had a "back seat driver" - another stunt driver hidden low in the back who drove KITT when KITT was seen driving itself. (Though, that may not have been the hero KITT, but the stunt KITT with a "dummy" dash and instrument panel in it, and I don't think they used that KITT for jumping.)

      Funny you should mention the Batmobile. I've seen the Futura (or photos of it) as it appeared in one of the Doby Gillis films. Cool concept car that Mr. Barrris didn't need to modify much at all. KITT was the same; they just added a custom "nose" to it, and a tail lamp blackout, and then the Cylon "eye" and the interior controls. The basic shell was still instantly recognizable as a Trans Am. In the pilot episode, though, there are scenes where KITT doesn't have that tail lamp blackout or the modded nose; it has a regular TA nose with the Cylon eye almost just stuck onto the front of it. (They needed to make less modifications to the 2008 Mustang when they turned that into the new KITT; all they really did was add the Cylon eyes in the bonnet scoop openings and that "snow globe" voice box in the interior.)

      And speaking of the Batmobile (nice segway into the Homage vs. Copyright thing), the Batmobile makes an appearance - complete with bat emblems on the wheel hubs - in a crazy SF film called "Galaxina", starring the late Dorothy Stratton and Avery Schreiber (the "Doritos go 'CRUNCH!'" advert guy of the '70s). It was a static "set dressing" and never had more than a few seconds of screen time, but it was unmistakable. (The film was released in 1980 just after Stratton's unfortunate and untimely death.)

      And as another segway, Stratton also appeared on one episode of 'Buck Rodgers' with Gil Gerard. 'Buck' was much like 'Galactica' because Glen Larsen created both shows, so he was able to use his own sound FX and any other props without worry. And in an interview with Larsen back in the early 1990s he said the Egyptian motif of the Galactica uniforms was carried over from his original idea for the 'Galactica' saga, which he'd been working on before 'Star Wars' came out, only then his title for it was 'Adam's Ark', but the premise was the same. (The ABC "suits" didn't like the title, so they had him rework that, and according to Larsen in the interview, the suits wanted to name the show after the main ship in it. Also, ABC rushed Larsen into production which is why there was so much re-used stock footage, something Larsen never liked.)

      Lucas (IMHO) sort of overstepped his authority when he brought suit against Larsen over the 'Galactica' series, especially when you consider it was Lucas' own Industrial Light and Magic that build the filming minis and did all of the SFX for the show. He had to give the "Okay" for that to happen. ILM was a fledgling company at the time, having only done 'Star Wars', which ILM was created for, so Lucas must have had his hands in the works, and a say in what ILM did or didn't do.

      Blanks: I see what you mean... same name, but a totally different premise. Sort of like the planet Vulcan in one of the early 'Doctor Who' stories (either Hartnell or Troughton - I can't remember which) and the Vulcan of 'Star Trek': same planet name, different race of beings on each and each planet in a different star system.

      Subs and internal noises: Yes, I know there isn't much noise inside a sub's control room. One of my neighbors is a retired submariner (Chief Motor Machinist Mate) and he said that all you could really hear in the control room was the faint hum of the equipment cooling fans, or the 'ping' of the sonar if they had it on speaker rather than the sonarman's headset. In fact, SEAVIEW's control room had so much background noise that in real life, it would have overpowered their sonarman's equipment, and for a 'stealth' sub, she would have been heard all over the ocean!

      And speaking of sound, I'm also wondering about the new UNCLE movie. It's like the Sasquatch over here; I've heard about it, but I have yet to see any signs (adverts) for it!  ;)   I wonder how much homage, if any, they'll pay to the original. Like when they made the TV reunion movie in 1984 "The Fifteen Years Later Affair". They used the same pen communicator and sound (Vaughan's Solo kept it with him as a memento), and in the UNCLE HQ they had a nice framed photo of the late Leo G. Carroll on the desk. (In that telemovie they also paid some homage to James Bond, having George Lazenby in a tricked-out Astin-Martin, with a number plate that read "JB", coming to Solo's rescue.) I also wonder if Vaughan or David McCallum will have cameos in it.

      Which brings me back to that homage thing again. When McCallum was starring in 'NCIS' as Donald "Ducky" Mallard, in the episode "The Meat Puzzle", one of the agents (Leroy Gibbs who knew 'Ducky" from years back) gets asked by another agent, "What did Ducky look like when he was younger?" Gibbs answers, "Illya Kuryakin." (That was an applause  moment on the sofa, and strangely, the only episode of 'NCIS' I'd ever seen.)

      Dino.

      -----Original Message-----
      From: gf willmetts <gfwillmetts-2@...>
      To: Search Chat <probe_control@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Sun, Dec 22, 2013 6:16 am
      Subject: RE: [probe_control] And all that Search...

      Hello Dino

                  Part of being an editor is being able to make sense to people.

                  Comparisons between Miles and Graiman is also a matter of a couple decades difference. Like a lot of Brits in the US, Edward Mulhare typified how your people perceive us although that’s pretty much a bad stereotype as we’ve seen so much of your culture over here, that we know you people better than you do. Devon Miles did have some comebacks in a lot of the shows just with a drier wit.

                  With the original KITT, the chassis is less important that the frame and motor it was built around. You only have to compare the Futura to the Batmobile variant to realise how little that was really changed and most of it was additional. If memory serves, wasn’t the hero KITT on display at the Universal Studio lot?? If you want another interesting fact, a lot of the times when you only saw a pair of hands driving KITT, they weren’t even Hasselhoff’s.

                  Re: Phaser. Well, that’s where is originally came from and why it can’t really be copyrighted. Paramount, like Lucas, want to ensure there is no infringement of their properties. As the USN had an Enterprise first, I doubt if they’re infringing although it would be interesting to see them taking Paramount to court over it. :-)

                  The term TARDIS is so iconic now that even when the word is ‘borrowed’ everyone knows the source and tends to see it as a bit of a homage acknowledgement. As to the rights to the police box, see the previous paragraph. The police were on to a loser because they gave up using the police box, which was primarily to ring the station and have a few supplies inside, in the early 60s.

                  With homages, once or twice is OK. Continually, using a device rather than dialogue, might constitute a violation. I suspect the continual use of the sonic screwdriver in ‘Doctor Who’ is more to do with merchandising these days. A lot of us over here think it’s being over-used. As there is no real sonic screwdriver, it’s very much a fabrication. Its design changes with each regeneration but not its function.

                  Re: Blanks. They are different. Mine are to do with being immune to being psionically scanned which is a very specific label if it comes up in someone else’s stories dealing with psionics. A totally different proposition. I had a think after last night’s email. Also in Psi-Kicks, the Psionics label most of their abilities starting with ‘S’ and one ability that is clearly in my stories alone is the ability to ‘share’ or acquire some ability off of others. I can’t copyright the word ‘share’ but its usage like that hasn’t become common like with Asimov’s robotic laws. I did the ‘s’ type when I saw so many coming out that way and re-enforced its use. Remember, I’m giving this as an example of how copyright works.

                  As to Star Wars and Battleship: Galactica. Of course they were different although the latter wouldn’t have existed without the former. Larson wasn’t stupid and made sure that they were different and went with the Egyptian motif and no Force malarkey. If anything, based off their costumes, Galactica was very much Buck Rogers in its approach. Clothes didn’t really get messy until after ‘Blade Runner’.

                  As to sounds. A lot of it’s in the public domain. How many of you have sound effects from various shows on your computer?? I even use a Droopy line to remind me if I haven’t turned on the mains to my laptop and the battery juice is running down.  A lot of the time, the studios will only kick up a fuss if the violators are making tons of money off their product or bringing the brand into disrepute. Even the lowest of cheapie studios are careful on how far they can go.

                  With submarines, it’s like boats, there are certain noises that are automatically associated with them but it’s pretty much like hearing spaceships in space. We’ve had many programmes over here showing real life submarine life and there’s less noise than you think.

                  One thing I am wondering about with the new UNCLE film is whether their pen transmitter will have a silent alarm cos it’s a dead giveaway when anyone is quietly infiltrating anywhere.

      Geoff

      *************  Geoff Willmetts    editor, SFCrowsnest.org.uk  and other suffixes *************
       
                 SFCrowsnest.org.uk is the biggest SF website in Europe and second biggest in the world 
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