Thursday, April 16, 2009

CSI-Astro Quest: "ideas are a dime a dozen"

On 16 April 09, CSI had a show featuring Star Trek themes, but the underlying murder was about idea-stealing. The guy who says "ideas are a dime a dozen" [ "Jonathan Danson"] gets whacked (albeit unintentionally) by the idea-originator [a professor, played by Kate Vernon, Ellen Tighe on "Battlestar Galactica"]

MSNBC describes the final identification of the culprit:

[Hodges and Wendy] discover that a college professor (Vernon) who was making a documentary about Jonathan's remake was the murderer. Luckily, the professor was politically active, so had been fingerprinted years before, making her easy to find once the CSIs put all the pieces together. Her reason: Jonathan was one of her students, and when she saw "Redux," she noted he'd stolen his ideas from her class lecture. She wanted credit, but Jonathan wouldn't give it to her. Then he calls her 20 years devoted to media theory "a wasted life." The professor's even all intellectual about the murder, citing Derrida, until Brass dumbs it down, "I just call it second-degree murder."

from scifiwire:

We screened the episode and were surprised to see not only Battlestar Galactica cast member Kate Vernon, but also cameos by a couple of other Battlestar players: Ronald D. Moore and Grace Park. Moore even gets a line in the episode rich with irony to anyone who recalls the initial backlash against the reboot of Battlestar.]

CBS, part of the corporation that owns the rights to Star Trek, will go where lots of people have gone before with a sci-fi-themed episode of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation on April 16 at 9 p.m. ET/PT, and you can watch a clip here.

In the episode, Hodges (Wallace Langham) and Wendy (Liz Vassey) run into each other at a science fiction convention for one of their favorite classic television shows that is not Star Trek and end up investigating the murder of one of their beloved actors.

The clip shows a fantasy sequence in which Hodges imagines himself the captain of a starship that's not the Enterprise—though it has the Enterprise's sound effects and background score—who expresses his feelings for Yeoman Wendy, who is not Yeoman Rand, though she shares a similar if not identical hairstyle highlighted by a comparably preposterous hairpiece.


CBS has been running ads for this week's CSI television show. It seems that the investigators are digging into the murder at a convention. That convention seems very definitely Star Trek-oriented, with costumes, a bridge, and Trek sayings. I'm video-recording it!

***of the allusion to Derrida:

Monegal on Derrida-->Educated in Borges's thought from the age of fifteen, I must admit that many of Derrida's novelties struck me as being rather tautological. I could not understand why he took so long in arriving at the same luminous perspectives which Borges had opened up years earlier. His famed "deconstruction" impressed me for its technical precision and the infinite seduction of its textual sleights-of-hand, but it was all too familiar to me: I had experienced it in Borges avant la lettre.

***One can find a clip of the Astro Quest episode

Caught in the combine [from Wikipedia: One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest refers constantly to different authorities that control individuals through subtle and coercive methods. The novel's narrator, the Chief, combines these authorities in his mind, terming them "The Combine" in reference to the mechanistic way they manipulate and process individuals.]

Hyperintellectual diarrhea


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