Cord Devlin

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This is the story of a boy named Cord,

Who on family trips could become quite bored.

 

Frequently abroad for dad’s International Diplomacy,

Cord had to make time at the American Embassy.

 

One day, however, he chanced to view,

An old TV show from out of the blue.

 

There were funny names like Kirk and Spock,

But the science fiction was far from Schlock.

 

Star Trek had starships, aliens and planets galore,

And featured a crew that thirsted for more.

The Joy of Reading Science Fiction

GalacticIn college I rediscovered recreational reading when I learned to buy books that appealed to me personally as opposed to my English teachers. The first book that kicked off this new found hobby came at the suggestion of a friend. It was War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy. No wait, that’s not right. What was it? Oh yes, it was Conan the Barbarian by Robert E. Howard.

Want to Get Away?

drmanhattanfromtrailer            Anyone see the movie ‘Watchmen’? I thought it was a great treatment of the ‘what if superheroes were real’ premise. The film was better than most at shedding light on how these real people handled the trials of their everyday lives while balancing their vigilante duties. The most compelling character and the only one with serious super powers was Dr. Manhattan, a naked blue skinned Adonis who sported the symbol of a hydrogen atom on his forehead. He burned it into his skin using his finger when prompted to adopt a symbol for brand recognition. Apparently, marketing is important even for superheroes.

Religion versus Star Trek’s Ancestor

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A long time ago, Sci-Fi fans flocked to a big budget space opera movie called Forbidden Planet. It was in theatres in 1956. I had seen it a good many years later on TV and could see why some people credited it as the forebear to Star Trek. It’s set in a future where a united civilization of planets is patrolled by quasi-military space ships with alphanumeric designations. Unlike science fiction movies from that era it wasn’t an inferior ‘B’ movie monster fest. Even though it did have a monster, the premise was far deeper and the production values were superb thanks to a huge budget of two million dollars.

Superior Ability Breeds Superior Ambition

star_trek_into_darkness_poster_teaser  When I was a kid I aspired to be like my heroes. Most of us   did. I liked the superheroes but I also liked those without any super normal abilities too. The Lone Ranger comes to mind as one of my first heroes in that category. He proved that one didn’t have to be born on the planet Krypton to be something special. Ambition and training could transform someone as well. The theme of improved humanity, however, served as a cautionary tale in a memorable episode of Star Trek.

Star Trek 1979

In 1979 I graduated college so to all outward appearances I was an adult. However, seething under the surface of this grown up was a rabid Star Trek fan who had closely followed the rumors of a big screen production of the old show. Several of my classmates anticipated reliving the wonders of life in Star Fleet ten years after the show was cancelled. Funny how most of the engineering class had that in common. Could it be why we went into that technical discipline in the first place?