8/12/2013

At ComicCon 2012, they held the Starship Smackdown to decide the greatest starship of all time. The battle came down to USS Enterprise NCC-1701 from the original series versus the USS Enterprise NCC-1701-A from Star Trek: The Movie. Astrophysicist Neil Degrasse Tyson offered an impassioned defense for the original Enterprise, and basically argued that you need to look at the Enterprise compared to other spaceships of the time.


Well, I thought it would be interesting to do just that. I combed scifi movies and TV shows from 1960 to 1966, and found four other fictional spaceships we can compare it to. I think you'll come to a new appreciation for the great bird.


1. Retro Rocket

The Phantom Planet, 1961
The Phantom Planet featured your standard fifties rocket, not even named in the original movie. The only thing that made it stand out is the fins on three sides instead of all four.


2. Spaceship Explorer 12

Spaceship Explorer 12; Journey to the 7th Planet, 1962
In this scifi movie, we still have your standard rocket. It's more styled after the real rockets of the day, but still not much to look at. Best shot I could find.

3. Mars Gravity Probe 1

Mars Gravity Probe 1; Robinson Crusoe on Mars, 1964
This movie actually broke new ground in science fiction in their attempts to create a realistic spaceship. It looks pretty good, considering. I couldn't find a good shot from the actual movie, so this is a CGI render from ArcasArt.

4. Jupiter 2

Jupiter 2; Lost in Space, 1965
The Lost in Space TV show went right back to square one with Jupiter 2, nothing more than an Earth version of the flying saucer. Bear in mind, this ship was created and aired on TV in the same year as Star Trek.


The USS Enterprise

Now having seen all these, imagine being back in the year 1966, and turning on the TV to see this. I think you'll agree, it's pretty mind-blowing.

What did you think of the overview?

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5 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Yeah, I'd say it wins hands down. The one from Robinson Crusoe on Mars wasn't bad. Most were just rockets or saucers at the time.

DAVID WALSTON said...

That was thought provoking. It truly was ahead of its time.

Hart Johnson said...

Oh, yeah... Starship Enterprise wins! We STILL haven't got anything that great! Of course I suspect Serenity is closer to what we'll end up with. teehee

Pat Dilloway said...

That's a big upgrade.

MarkM said...

I always liked the Jupiter:2...of course, it couldn't compare to the Enterprise, but still :)

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