Monday 14 December 2015

Star Trek 4 - James Blish

Title: Star Trek 4
Author: James Blish
Published: 1971
Chronological Period: 2267 - 2269

Available at:
Amazon UK

“Star Trek 4” by James Blish is his fourth collection of Star Trek Original Series scripts adaptations. There are six adaptations included in this collection with two taken from each of Star Trek’s three seasons as follows:

All Our Yesterdays (Season 3)
The Devil in the Dark (Season 1)
Journey to Babel (Season 2)
The Menagerie (Season 1)
The Enterprise Incident (Season 3)
A Piece of the Action (Season 2)

The episodes in this collection are all rather enjoyable and fun, including the two stories taken from season 3 which were probably the best ones available from that season. It probably isn’t as enjoyable as “Star Trek 3” was but considering that book contained four episodes that were nominated for Hugo awards and this one only contained one it shouldn’t be that surprising.

In regards to the writing itself, Blish continues to do a competent job at converting the episodes into short story form although as always there is very little elaboration over what has been shown on TV. In fact, in regards to “The Megangerie”, Blish just removes the entire framing story and sticks with what is basically “The Cage”. He does at least explain why he does it, although as a modern reader used to reading many stories that include multiple viewpoints, different time periods and framing stories I can’t say I agree with his reasoning. Then again, as this was a short story, perhaps it was the right thing to have done.

Overall, this is another competent and enjoyable collection of Star Trek episode adaptations. It is probably only something a Trek fan would enjoy but I do like having the ability just to quickly delve into the stories of The Original Series without having to sit down and watch a full 40 minute episode.

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