If Memory Serves (S02E08)

“If Memory Serves” makes television history by creating the longest arc between two aired television episodes, spanning 53 years. Three years after the events of the “The Cage”, Star Trek’s original pilot, Captain Pike is brought back to Talos IV and his love interest Vina, and casting a shadow over Pike’s future. Spock has brought Michael to Talos IV as he knows the Talosians – with her help – can bring his mind back into a linear experience of time. Team re:Discovery discuss memories of “our” Melissa George, parallels with Doctor Who and the new Hulu show PEN15. How’s this related to Star Trek? You’ll have to listen to find out!

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  • Doctor Who has used archive footage from much earlier in its history for a “previously on” style recap twice: once in the twentieth anniversary special The Five Doctors (1983), which used footage of William Hartnell from The Dalek Invasion of Earth (1964), and then again in Peter Capaldi’s final story, “Twice Upon a Time” (2017), which used footage from William Hartnell’s final story, The Tenth Planet (1966), blending it into footage of a new actor, David Bradley, who played the character in that episode. The fiftieth anniversary special “The Day of the Doctor” (2013) uses part of the series’ original 1963 intro sequence, but no footage of previous events, though clips from various earlier stories were used in the preceding episode “The Name of the Doctor“.
  • According to the original series episode “The Devil in the Dark”, touch is not strictly necessary for a mind meld, but does make it more effective.
  • We had a note about Buffy Summers’ death and resurrection in our recap for “The Sounds of Thunder”.
  • In Kurt Vonnegut’s most well-known novel, Slaughterhouse-Five, protagonist Billy Pilgrim becomes “unstuck in time”, experiencing his life out of sequence.
  • Hulu’s PEN15 is a comedy series created by and starring Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle playing themselves as teenagers. Strangers with Candy (1999) was a Comedy Central series created by Amy Sedaris, Stephen Colbert and a couple of their comedy mates. It stars Sedaris as Jerri Blank, a high school dropout who has led a life of crime, who goes back to school at the age of 46. It was followed by a prequel film in 2005.
  • Tim Russ is best known as the Vulcan Commander Tuvok, Janeway’s loyal friend and tactical officer aboard the USS Voyager. Among many other projects, he has appeared in Renegades, originally a Star Trek fan spin-off before having all the serial numbers filed off. He appears as Tuvok in the original fan film, and as another Vulcan-like character, Commander Kovok, in the ongoing web series. Both also feature the original Chekov, Walter Koenig.
  • Melissa George’s credits include Charmed, Alias, Grey’s Anatomy, The Good Wife and both the Australian and American television adaptations of Christos Tsolkas’ novel The Slap.
  • Home and Away (1988) and Neighbours (1985) are Australia’s two biggest soap operas. Home and Away is set in the fictional New South Wales coastal town of Summer Bay, and often has scenes on the beach. Neighbours is set in Erinsborough, a fictional suburb of Melbourne, Victoria’s capital city. There’s a sort of unofficial rivalry between the two, no doubt fuelled by the traditional rivalry between Sydney and Melbourne. Both are popular in the UK.
  • You can learn all about Steven Soderbergh’s 1999 film The Limey in episode four of Carla’s other podcast, Club Soderbergh.
  • Originally Australian regional areas were serviced by two television stations: the national broadcaster (the ABC), and a local commercial station (like Northern Rivers Television). Then the federal government introduced a program of aggregation (or deregulation, as Ben called it), which allowed the three major networks – Seven, Nine and Ten – to expand their signals into country areas, and for more distant local commercial stations to broadcast into each other’s regions. This led to the affiliation (and in many cases acquisition and rebranding) of each smaller station to one of the major networks, and subsequently the loss of most local content. This 1994 report from the last instalment of SCN local news in Victoria summarises the process and concerns of the time.
  • Sophie’s Choice is a novel by American author William Styron, in which the protagonist reveals that she was forced by Nazis to choose which of her two children would be killed. It’s since become a euphemism for an impossible decision.
  • Dark City (1998) is a sci-fi neo-noir film by Australian director Alex Proyas, following his break out hit The Crow. It stars Rufus Sewell, Kiefer Sutherland, Jennifer Connelly and William Hurt, and also features Melissa George, Richard O’Brien (of Rocky Horror fame), Ian Richardson and Australian icons Bruce Spence, Colin Friels and David Wenham.
  • Though Susan Oliver is still best remembered for playing Vina in the original series of Star Trek, she led an extraordinary life, as chronicled in the 2014 documentary The Green Girl. (The documentary takes its name from the fact that she was the first to wear the green makeup of an “Orion animal woman”, albeit as an alternate version of Vina in a Talosian fantasy for Pike.)

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