The Ready Room: A Star Trek Podcast
200: Five Years and Counting

Reflecting on The Ready Room and Star Trek.

It’s hard to believe that it’s been five years since the first episode of The Ready Room. Born of disaster, this show has evolved into a gathering place for the hosts of the network that grew up around it. The Trek.fm network has become an important part of the daily routine for many Star Trek fans, but there was a time when there was no network. There was just this show. So as we reach another milestone—200 episodes—we take a break from our usual format to quietly mark the occasion with a good friend who has been part of The Ready Room almost since the beginning: Larry Nemecek.

But first, we start with a bit of the history behind both The Ready Room and the network …

Chapters
The History of The Ready Room (00:00:00)
Larry Beams In (00:26:47)
Where Was the Franchise in 2011? (00:39:38)
Where We Are Now (00:54:31)
Star Trek’s Return to TV (01:02:25)
Five Years of The Ready Room (01:18:03)
The Changing Media Landscape (01:37:47)
Fandom Triumphs (01:50:05)
The Direction of the New Series (02:00:59)
Final Thoughts (02:16:22)

Host
C Bryan Jones

Guest
Larry Nemecek

Production
C Bryan Jones (Editor and Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Norman C. Lao (Executive Producer) Charlynn Schmiedt (Executive Producer) Renee Roberts (Associate Producer) Zachary Fruhling (Associate Producer) Sam Piassick (Associate Producer) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) Will Nguyen (Content Manager)

Direct download: trr-200.mp3
Category:Special Features -- posted at: 8:00am MDT

199: The Search for Pineapple

Silent Enemy.

Most aliens in Star Trek are presented in terms that the human mind can understand. The Klingons, the Romulans, even the Borg. We can make sense of their actions and motives. But in reality, new life that we meet out in space will have a lot less in common with us. Enterprise attempted to address this truth midway through its first season in “Silent Enemy,” which pitted our crew against beings that only CGI could create—and who never spoke a word.

In this episode of The Ready Room, we’re joined by Zachary Fruhling, Brandon-Shea Mutala, and Dennis Castello to discuss this episode that includes not an alien mystery, but also a culinary one. Join us as we talk about the true nature of Malcolm Reed, Captain Archer’s decision to tuck tail and run, the real reason the Enterprise needed phase cannons to be installed, and, of course, the infamous B-story: the search for Malcolm’s favorite food.

In our news segment, we discuss a new collection of the classic James Blish TOS novelizations, the results of the Strange New Worlds short story contest, and Simon Pegg’s thoughts on the foundation of Star Trek.

News
Barnes & Noble Release “The Classic Episodes” Anthology (00:04:00)
Simon Pegg on the Foundation of Star Trek (00:11:07)
2016 Strange New World Winners Announced (00:23:41)

Feature: Silent Enemy
Synopsis and Initial Thoughts (00:30:46)
Aliens Unknown (00:43:09)
Tucking Tail (00:52:37)
The Search for Pineapple (01:05:17)
Direction, Visuals, and Sound (01:23:52)
Final Thoughts (01:38:18)

Hosts
C Bryan Jones and Zachary Fruhling

Guests
Brandon-Shea Mutala and Dennis Castello

Production
C Bryan Jones (Editor and Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Norman C. Lao (Executive Producer) Charlynn Schmiedt (Executive Producer) Renee Roberts (Associate Producer) Zachary Fruhling (Associate Producer) Sam Piassick (Associate Producer) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) Will Nguyen (Content Manager)

Direct download: trr-199.mp3
Category:Enterprise -- posted at: 7:24am MDT

198: Procreation TED Talk

Someone to Watch Over Me.

When you live on a starship, you get to know your neighbors. Sometimes you get to know them well. Especially if you’re Seven of Nine and you’re taking an interest in interpersonal relations. Armed with Borg implants and 24th-century Starfleet technology, gathering data is easy. The only problem is that some of your subjects may not want to be part of the study.

In this episode of The Ready Room, we’re joined by Charlynn Schmiedt, Zachary Fruhling, and Phillip Gilfus to discuss “Someone to Watch Over Me.” Join us for the Dance of Conception as the Doctor teaches Seven how to land a date, sweep him off his feet … and break his arm … all while mastering the art of small talk. We also delve into the potential of a Doctor-Seven relationship, what happens when you leave Neelix in charge of caring for diplomats, and the exploits of Leisure Suit Kadi.

In our news segment, we discuss Star Trek: The Animated Series coming to Blu-ray, supposed pre-production photos from the new series, and we debate the StarTrek.com poll that asked which was the best Star Trek relationship.

News
Star Trek: The Animated Series coming to Blu-ray (00:03:06)
Star Trek 2017 pre-production photos? (00:11:51)
Poll: Which was the best Star Trek romance? (00:26:24)

Feature: Someone to Watch Over Me
Synopsis and Initial Thoughts (00:31:29)
The Setup: Peeping Seven (00:41:28)
The B’Elanna-Seven Relationship (00:44:16)
Lessons In Love (00:48:24)
The Doctor’s Motivations (01:00:09)
Tom Paris: Audience Surrogate (01:05:35)
The Most Awkward Date Ever (01:09:26)
Leisure Suit Kadi (01:19:01)
The Doctor-Seven Relationship (01:25:59)
Final Thoughts (01:34:59)

Hosts
C Bryan Jones and Charlynn Schmiedt

Guests
Phillip Gilfus and Zachary Fruhling

Production
C Bryan Jones (Editor and Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Norman C. Lao (Executive Producer) Charlynn Schmiedt (Executive Producer) Renee Roberts (Associate Producer) Zachary Fruhling (Associate Producer) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) Will Nguyen (Content Manager)

Direct download: trr-198.mp3
Category:Voyager -- posted at: 5:30am MDT

197: Life with the Safeties On

It’s Only a Paper Moon.

Events in Star Trek—even tragic ones—rarely have lasting consequences. Deep Space Nine changed that with arcs that took place during the Dominion War. In particular, in the final season, Nog’s injuries in battle led to a deep exploration of the lasting impact of a single moment in time—and they did it with the usual DS9 mix of serious commentary and humor.

In this episode of The Ready Room, we’re joined by Zachary Fruhling and Matthew Rushing to discuss Nog’s retreat to the holosuite, his struggle to come to terms with the physical and emotional damage of his experiences in “The Siege of AR-558,” and the counseling tag-team of Ezri Dax and Vic Fontaine who brought him back to reality.

In our news segment, we discuss additional shooting (reported as reshoots by most media) for Star Trek Beyond, a special agreement between CBS and Paramount that dictated a six-month post-film waiting period for Star Trek’s return to TV, and Rod Roddenberry joining the new series as Executive Producer.

News
Star Trek Beyond Reshoots (00:04:19)
CBS-Paramount Agreement (00:12:44)
Rod Roddenberry EP (00:26:24)

Feature: It’s Only a Paper Moon
Synopsis and Initial Thoughts (00:34:46)
Nog’s PTSD (00:45:49)
Counselor Ezri (00:56:25)
Counselor Vic (01:09:15)
The Original Concept (01:24:26)
The Literary Universe Connection (01:36:21)
Final Thoughts (01:37:27)
Listener Feedback and Closing (01:44:54)

Hosts
C Bryan Jones and Zachary Fruhling

Guest
Matthew Rushing

Production
C Bryan Jones (Editor and Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Norman C. Lao (Executive Producer) Charlynn Schmiedt (Executive Producer) Renee Roberts (Associate Producer) Zachary Fruhling (Associate Producer) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) Will Nguyen (Content Manager)

Direct download: trr-197.mp3
Category:Deep Space Nine -- posted at: 5:30am MDT

196: Indiana Picard and the Secret of the Whatever

Captain’s Holiday.

Everyone gets a bit too stressed sometimes. And when that happens, it can be difficult to enjoy anything—even the negotiation of a successful trade agreement. When this happened to Captain Picard, the crew had to pull together to force him to take a vacation. But of course, a Picard vacation isn't quite like the ones you and I take.

In this episode of The Ready Room, we’re joined by Aaron Harvey, Matthew Rushing, and Mike Schindler to discuss “Captain’s Holiday,” Jean-Luc and Vash, the prolific Max Grodenchek (he’s everywhere!), Riker’s counseling skills, and why you should be careful where you put your Horga'hn.

In our news segment, we consider whether William Shatner’s return as Captain Kirk would be a good idea or a bad one, debate the StarTrek.com poll that asked Star Trek pet you would want to have, and discuss the choice of Bryan Fuller as show-runner for the new Star Trek series premiering in 2017.

News
Shatner back as Kirk? (00:03:14)
Poll: Which Star Trek pet do you want? (00:08:59)
Bryan Fuller named Star Trek 2017 Show-runner (00:13:25)

Feature: Captain’s Holiday
Synopsis and Initial Thoughts (00:31:58)
The “Shore Leave” Connection (00:39:55)
The Vashification of Jean-Luc Picard (00:42:23)
Ira’s Take on TNG (00:53:03)
Thank You, Counselor Riker! (01:00:05)
The Changing Flavor of TNG (01:05:21)
Prosthetnic Vorgon Jeltz (01:10:04)
Max Grodenchek is Everywhere! (01:17:17)
A Few More Thoughts on Vash… (01:21:49)
Final Thoughts (01:24:00)

Hosts
C Bryan Jones and Aaron Harvey

Guests
Matthew Rushing and Mike Schindler

Production
C Bryan Jones (Editor and Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Norman C. Lao (Executive Producer) Charlynn Schmiedt (Executive Producer) Renee Roberts (Associate Producer) Zachary Fruhling (Associate Producer) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) Will Nguyen (Content Manager)

Direct download: trr-196.mp3
Category:The Next Generation -- posted at: 5:30am MDT

195: Lamb Chop’s (Creepy) Play-Along

The Lights of Zetar.

You probably already know that it’s not a good idea to stare into a bright light. When there are many lights—and they’re multi-colored—doing so becomes an even worse idea. You could damage your eyesight, or perhaps have you brainwave replaced by that of a group of alien minds searching for a body to call home. That’s what happened to Lt. Mira Romaine in “The Lights of Zetar,” the third-season TOS episode that plays with character personalities, limited financial resources, and has a connection to a beloved children’s show.

In this episode of The Ready Room, we’re joined by Larry Nemecek and Brandon-Shea Mutala to discuss Memory Alpha, Scotty in love, how you can blame anything on space, and why horses might not make the best engineers. We also delve into some Season Three trivia, production shortcuts, and remastered TOS elements.

In our news segment, Chris and Larry discuss whether the ascension of Les Moonves to Chair of CBS Corp. will have an impact on Star Trek, when we’ll hear first details about the Star Trek 2017 series, and the future of Star Trek on streaming services not called CBS All Access. Plus, Larry fills us in on the latest happenings in Portal 47.

News
Les Moonves new CBS Corp. Chair (00:05:33)
When will Star Trek 2017 details be announced? (00:11:24)
Star Trek’s future on streaming services (00:15:40)
Portal 47 update (00:25:07)

Feature
Synopsis and Initial Thoughts (00:32:41)
Lamb Chop’s (Creepy) Play-Along (00:43:16)
Pacing, Message, and Cinematography (00:47:41)
Scotty in Love (00:53:27)
Production Shortcuts (01:05:22)
Remastered Elements (01:11:51)
We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Shields (01:15:21)
Farewell Engineering, and Other Zetar Trivia (01:22:04)
Final Thoughts (01:24:44)

Hosts
C Bryan Jones and Larry Nemecek

Guest
Brandon-Shea Mutala

Production
C Bryan Jones (Editor and Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Norman C. Lao (Executive Producer) Charlynn Schmiedt (Executive Producer) Rene Roberts (Associate Producer) Zachary Fruhling (Associate Producer) Sam Piassick (Associate Producer) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) Will Nguyen (Content Manager)

Direct download: trr-195.mp3
Category:The Original Series -- posted at: 5:30am MDT

194: Two Guys, a Ship, and a Bourbon Bottle

Shuttlepod One.

Some of the best episodes of Star Trek are heavy on dialogue and light on action. But taking two characters and shoving them into a tiny space, from which they deliver incessant dialogue for 45 minutes, was a gutsy move for a new show trying to engage skeptical audiences in its first season. Did it pay off?

In this episode of The Ready Room, we’re joined by Matthew Rushing, Daniel Proulx, and Kevin Reitzel to discuss this very small bottle show, what it tells us about the characters, hope vs. pessimism, the deleted scene, and more. Oh … and we might mention T’Pol once of twice.

In our news segment, we look back at 24 years of The Undiscovered Country, debate the StarTrek.com poll that asked which captain you would want to swap places with for a day, and discuss Star Trek Beyond piggybacking on Star Wars: The Force Awakens with a first trailer.

News
24 Years of Star Trek VI (00:03:08)
Poll: Swapping Places with a Captain (00:14:25)
The Force Awakens Star Trek Beyond (00:20:18)

Feature: Shuttlepod One
Synopsis and Initial Thoughts (00:32:18)
A (Very Small) Bottle Show (00:46:01)
Jumping to Conclusions (00:53:11)
Short Tempers (00:58:09)
Hope vs. Pessimism (01:07:56)
All Talk, No Action (01:13:43)
Malcom’s Fantasy Island (01:20:50)
The Deleted Scene (01:28:54)
Final Thoughts (01:34:25)

Hosts
C Bryan Jones and Matthew Rushing

Guests
Daniel Proulx and Kevin Reitzel

Production
C Bryan Jones (Editor and Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Norman C. Lao (Executive Producer) Charlynn Schmiedt (Executive Producer) Renee Roberts (Associate Producer) Zachary Fruhling (Associate Producer) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) Will Nguyen (Content Manager)

Direct download: trr-194.mp3
Category:Enterprise -- posted at: 7:04am MDT

193: He's a Fake!

Deadlock.

Voyager is known for telling stories that rely heavily on technobabble. Sometimes it supports the story, sometimes it doesn’t. Season Two’s “Deadlock” is one of those cases in which technobabble was inescapable, but also necessary. How else do you explain two Voyager’s, two disheveled buns of steel, and Harry Kim’s dopplegänger?

In this episode of The Ready Room, we’re joined by Larry Nemecek, Charlynn Schmiedt, and Brandon-Shea Mutala to discuss the oddity that is “Deadlock,” parallel universes, Vidiians, generational ships, Chakotay’s weird baby comments, an inordinate number of script changes, and much more.

In our news segment, we look back at 19 years of First Contact and 29 years of The Voyage Home, talk with Terrace Cassidy about Geek Nation Tours’ new “Touch the Stars” program, and try to unravel the mysterious case of Enterprise stunt director Vince Deadrick’s disappearing chair.

News
29 Years of Star Trek IV (00:03:21)
19 Years of First Contact (00:13:23)
Vince Deadrick's Missing Chair (00:21:12)
GNT Touching the Stars (00:26:09)
Holiday Gifts and Specials! (39:26)

Feature: Deadlock
Synopsis and Initial Thoughts (00:48:11)
A Rainbow of Script Changes (00:56:54)
Saving Ensign Harry (01:03:17)
Parallel Universes (01:08:49)
More of Brannon’s “Weird Shit” (01:12:05)
(Not) Having Chakotay's Baby? (01:17:07)
Have Your Phase Variance 47 Ways (01:18:18)
Padding Through Technobabble (01:22:41)
Based on a Fake Story (01:32:44)
A Generational Ship (01:35:24)
Deus Ex Vidiian (01:43:07)
Final Thoughts (01:54:44)

Hosts
C Bryan Jones and Larry Nemecek

Guests
Charlynn Schmiedt, Brandon-Shea Mutala, and Terrace Cassidy

Production
C Bryan Jones (Editor and Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Norman C. Lao (Executive Producer) Charlynn Schmiedt (Executive Producer) Renee Roberts (Associate Producer) Zachary Fruhling (Associate Producer) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) Will Nguyen (Content Manager)

Direct download: trr-193.mp3
Category:Voyager -- posted at: 8:35am MDT

192: Even the Devil Believes

In the Hands of the Prophets.

At the end of its first season, Deep Space Nine really began to take on the form that would define the series. The writers wanted to follow up the powerful “Duet” with something even better, even more layered. To do this, they brought together the Federation’s scientific approach to the world and the Bajorans’ religious one. The clash of philosophies tells us a lot about our own world as well as Gene Roddenberry’s vision for Star Trek. And it introduced us to one of Star Trek’s great villains.

In this episode of The Ready Room, we’re joined by Will Nguyen, Mike Morrison, and Ken Tripp to discuss DS9’s first-season finale, “In the Hands of the Prophets,” the introduction of Winn and Bareil, handling religion on Star Trek, Keiko the grumpy, Sisko the mediator, and much more.

In our news segment, we discuss the comments of Paramount’s Motion Picture Group president Marc Evan about a possible grittier future for Star Trek, and Dayton Ward’s upcoming travel guide that will get you ready for your visit to Vulcan.

News
Star Trek: Thirty Dark Zero or SEAL Team Six? (00:03:37)
Hidden Universe Travel Guide to Vulcan (00:12:26)

Feature: In the Hands of the Prophets
Synopsis and Initial Thoughts (00:23:31)
Setting the Tone (00:33:45)
Representing Roddenberry’s Vision (00:48:04)
Handling a Sensitive Subject (00:53:47)
The Thesis of Secularism (01:00:23)
Winn and Kira: Religion vs. Spirituality (01:09:20)
Introducing Fletcher’s Winn and Anglim’s Bareil (01:17:55)
Final Thoughts (01:25:41)
Listener Feedback (01:36:01)

Hosts
C Bryan Jones and Will Nguyen

Guests
Mike Morrison and Ken Tripp

Production
C Bryan Jones (Editor and Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Norman C. Lao (Executive Producer) Charlynn Schmiedt (Executive Producer) Renee Roberts (Associate Producer) Zachary Fruhling (Associate Producer) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) Will Nguyen (Content Manager)

Direct download: trr-192.mp3
Category:Deep Space Nine -- posted at: 9:57pm MDT

191: Robotic Loverboy

In Theory.

The last person you’d expect to be looking for love on the Enterprise is Data. But that’s just what happens in “In Theory.” Well, Data wasn’t actually looking for love, but once it presented itself the prospect got its own subroutine … and the 1701-D became The Love Boat, filled with advice from corners both expected and not.

In this episode of The Ready Room, we’re joined by Charlynn Schmiedt, Andi VanderKolk, and Zachary Fruhling to discuss our robotic loverboy, the Riker book of moves, the future of human-android relations, and, unexpectedly, what cats do on starships. It’s all part of the fun when we share our theory of “In Theory.”

In our news segment, we discuss William Shatner's idea for a Star Trek musical, The Oatmeal's retelling of a famous Gene Roddenberry story, and some exciting news about our network.

News
Shatner interested in a Star Trek musical? (00:03:45)
The Oatmeal tells Gene Roddenberry’s story (00:13:45)
Trek.fm merchandise now available! (00:21:52)

Feature: In Theory
Synopsis and Initial Thoughts (00:30:20)
Robotic Loverboy (00:36:20)
Geordi La Forge: Love Counselor (00:57:20)
Random Observations (01:18:30)
B-Plot Unnecessary? (01:25:33)
Final Thoughts (01:33:00)

Hosts
C Bryan Jones and Charlynn Schmiedt

Guests
Andi VanderKolk and Zachary Fruhling

Production
C Bryan Jones (Editor and Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Norman C. Lao (Executive Producer) Charlynn Schmiedt (Executive Producer) Renee Roberts (Associate Producer) Zachary Fruhling (Associate Producer) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) Will Nguyen (Content Manager)

In Theory. The last person you’d expect to be looking for love on the Enterprise is Data. But that’s just what happens in “In Theory.” We discuss our robotic loverboy, the Riker book of moves, and much more.

Direct download: trr-191.mp3
Category:The Next Generation -- posted at: 8:04am MDT