* S O U N D T R E K K E R ' S B L U R B *
Hi, fellow trekkers!
Here it is, finally, in all its remastered glory: Star Trek’s second season episode Metamorphosis, shown on CBS a few weeks ago.
The Story - the Performance
I wont go into much details here, you all know the story, beautiful told by Gene L. Coon. A most romantic and sensitive episode telling the love story between a true alien being (called the Companion) and a lonely Earthman (Zefram Cochrane, the human inventor of the warp drive), who left his home at the age of 87 to die in space, only to find a place where he got rejuvenated and getting cared for by this strange alien being. Kirk and company, who are transporting a very ill female, commissioner Nancy Hedford, due for medical care, are witnesses to this very poetic and in the end happy events. The commissioner, a beautiful, but also lonely human being who never experienced true love herself, becomes involved in this romantic happenings after Cochrane falls in love for her, and after being joined by the alien being (something we may assume she agreed to), she gets cured from her disease and, more importantly, finally gives the Companion the chance to express her love for Cochrane, a love Cochrane was never aware of before. This new constellation gives Nancy Hedford also the chance to finally find love in her life also!
The lovely Elinor Donahue as Nancy Hedford is performing beautifully, first showing signs of bitterness and even arrogance during her deteriorating health, then expressing regret for never having experienced true love, and finally, after acting as the joined Companion/Hedford, all the emotions of a young woman being in love! Glenn Corbett as Zefrem Cochrane, in a convincing performance, also shows various states of emotions, first happiness for finally meeting human beings after all those years,, including a beautiful woman, then repulsion after being told the true feelings of the Companion, and finally accepting the love of the alien live form, albeit in the form of the joined human/alien being.
Script and Direction
The script by Gene L. Coon is a classic, and reminiscent of his script for “Devil in the Dark”, in which we also meet an alien being with a hidden agenda, which first acts very aggressive (and even murderous, as in “Devil”), and later shows true signs of emotions and is able to connect to the humans in a civilized manner, coming to an agreement!
The sensitive direction from Ralph Senensky is superb. He always was brought in when a script contained very emotional events and thus demanded a special treatment by the director, as was the case in his first trek appointment (This Side of Paradise). He would later return for Return to Tomorrow and Is There In Truth No Beauty?, both of whom contain some emotional stuff also! His other work for trek includes Obsession and Bread And Circuses.
This episode marks the first show containing music by the great George Duning, and this Senensky/Duning collaboration would be happen again with Return to Tomorrow and Is There In Truth No Beauty. (He also beautifully scored The Empath). His music is lovely, poetic and lyrical, sometimes dramatic and always gripping. In the very first scene, when seeing the Galileo shuttlecraft cruising majestetically through space, the musical cue is complementing the short scene beautifully! His cues for the romantic moments between Cochrane and the Companion and, later, the Companion/Nancy Hedford being, are really enchanting, adding much to an already beautiful story!
We get new enhanced shots of the Galileo, and the Companion cloud in space is also digitally re-created, changing colors between blue and angry orange-red. The later shots of the Companion on the planet were left untouched, though. The background on the planet, when Cochrane first approaches our crew, is enhanced also, but the tv rip doesn’t show much to make it worthwile. Maybe on the DVD in High Definition it will show.
Gamma Canaris N is enhanced, too, with nice brownish colors and a few white clouds. The Enterprise cruising through space when searching the lost crew is also seen a few short times, routinely enhanced. A special added bonus is the final scene of the last act, when we see the shuttlecraft leaving the planet Gamma Canaris N and flying toward the waiting Enterprise! Well done!
Okay, that’s it for today, except to remind you, as usual, to seed after downloading, or I’ll resign from my job to settle on a planet far, far away like Zefrem Cochrane – a planet without internet, so you won’t get any new trek remastered episodes anymore, at least not from me!
The Deadly Years: the Romulans are back, and this time not with stock footage from Balance of Terror, but in all it’s terrifying remastered glory! Stay tuned…
All right, people, that’s it for today! Take care, and