Monday, January 09, 2006

Favorite Sci-Fi TV/Movie Vehicle/Spaceship?

Okay, indulge a fantasy with me for a moment. No, not that one...this is a family-oriented blog...

Instead, pretend for an instant that you are whisked out of our boring consensus reality, into the world of science fiction/fantasy movies and dramas. You get just one shot at this. You suddenly have an opportunity to choose ONE (and no more than one...) fictional vehicle to pilot. It can be a spaceship, a hovercraft, a TARDIS or even a submarine.

So which famous vehicle do you choose, and why? In other words, what's the one "cockpit fantasy"(!) that as a fan you've always dreamed of indulging?(Keep it clean!) On which conveyance would you most like to take the helm and say "make it so..."

An obvious answer for me is the starship Enterprise (preferably the movie version; NCC-1701-A). I've just always believed that's a gorgeous ship. Unlike many people, I love the sequence in Star Trek: The Motion Picture where she leaves drydock. Has the cinema yet given us a more elegant space ship?

But, as readers of the blog are aware, I'm also a huge Space:1999 fan, so there's a big part of me that wants to don a bulky orange spacesuit (and helmet), clip on a commlock and slip into the cushy pilot's seat of an Eagle transporter. I've always thought that the Eagles are the most "believable" looking spaceships in TV history. Just an opinion...they're very utilitarian and practical.

But when I was a kid - circa around 1980 - if you'd ask me the ship I want to pilot, I'd have said the Millennium Falcon from Star Wars first, and then maybe an X-Wing fighter. But then again, I also loved the viper fightercraft from Battlestar Galactica and the Directorate Starfighter from Buck Rogers in the 25th Century...

There are all kinds of choices here. If you're more on the "dark side" of things maybe you want to fly a TIE? Or a Klingon Bird of Prey?

If you asked me which craft I'd like to go jogging on for a while, my answer would be - of course - the Discovery. Open the pod bay doors, HAL...

Or - leaving behind spaceships for a moment - maybe you've always had a hankering to go deep underwater aboard the Seaview in Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea or the Sea Quest? Personally, if I had to pick a submarine, I'd select the Nautilus from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea...

Anyway, the sky's literally the limit here. What's your favorite sci-fi/fantasy tv/movie ship? Which one do you want to steer, and how come?

And, uh, where would you take the ship?


  1. Anonymous2:46 PM

    I agree with you John. Give me the Enterprise A! What I wouldn't give to sit in the Captain's Chair, Kirk's Chair, and command the greatest ship in all of science fiction. I'd want my bridge to look the way it did in The Undiscovered Country. The Enterprise E would be a close second. But it would have to be the A for me. Second star to the right . . . and straight on till morning!

    -Chris Johnson

  2. Hey Chris!

    Outstanding choice, my friend. I love NCC-1701-A. I always call that versionof the famous ship MY Enterprise, because I was too young for the 1966 Enterprise, and then I was 16 or 17 by the time of Next Gen and Enterprise-D. I really loved Star Trek "most" in the stage from the TMP in 1979 to the end of the classic movie series in 1991. So I'll agree with you on that ship. I love the back-swept nacelle supports on her. And I love the re-designed photon torpedo launcher. I also like that command bridge (but only if I can be served coffee in one of those Starfleet mugs that Sulu drinks from aboard the Excelsior...) I'd look damn good in a red uniform, drinking coffee on the bridge of the Enterprise A.:)

    But then the question is, where would you take her? Second star to the right, and straight on till morning is a good answer! I was thinking more concretely. Like the planet of the Orion Slave Girls...

  3. Tough to pick just one...
    Hmm. If we're talking capital ship, I'd go for the refitted Motion Picture era Enterprise (not the -A, the bridge decor was too white), either that or the Pirate Ship Arcadia from the Captain Harlock anime. Fighter-size, It would be the Colonial Viper, no question.

  4. Hey James -

    Thanks for stopping by the blog and offering a thought on the spaceships/vehicles question. Your choices are great -- and it looks like NCC-1701 (movie version) is far and away carrying the day.

    Fighter craft? I can't decide if I'd rather go with the Colonial Viper or the Directorate Starfighter from Buck Rogers. I think I might give the tip to the Starfighter...

    By the by, I've enjoyed your TV efforts (ST: Voyager) and printed work over the years, and visited your home page many times to check on what's up with you. Best of luck with everything.

  5. Lee Hansen2:54 AM

    I thought the Naboo Royal Starship from Episode I was kinda cool. I'd be jetsetting thru the galaxy in that one.

    There is Nell, the starship Shad pilots in Battle Beyond The Stars. Love the handlebar controls.

    Don't forget the Argo or Yamato from Star Blazers. Awesome bridge.

    Though the movie was ehhh, I liked the Jupiter 2 from 1998's Lost in Space.

    I loved the Cygnus from the Black Hole. Very retro sci-fi ship.

    The Enterprise seems like a default choice. But I'll take the Reliant and the Grissom anyday.

  6. Hi, Lee!

    The Grissom was a really beautiful starship, I thought. Though captained by a dolt. I would gladly take command of that class starship; so long as I didn't have to stray far from Federation space. The Reliant was damn cool too

    You know, I almost posted a photo of the Yamato from Star Blazers here, but then felt I didn't have enough room. That is a great ship too; with a gorgeous command deck.

    It would be really cool to command The Cygnus from the Black Hole. Especially if you get a big, red evil robot to do your bidding too.

  7. Anonymous2:13 PM

    This is a pretty wide field. If I may break it down by class:

    Favorite capital ship: Tough choice. The "new" Galactica (I'm a sucker for WWII surplus) or the Rodger Young from Starship Troopers.

    Favorite fighter: The "old" Colonial Viper. (Favorite fighter pilot: Wilma Deering as played by Erin Gray.)

    Favorite transport / utility: Moonbase Eagle. Closest thing to a pickup truck you'll ever see on landing jacks. (I've always had a soft spot for the Botany Bay, Khan's prison sleepship, but I wouldn't want to fly her.)

    Favorite butt-ugly working ship: The Nostromo from Alien.

    Favorite submarine (since you brought it up): The Proteus from Fantastic Voyage.

    But my all-around favorite, the one I'd choose if I had ONE opportunity to sign on to a spaceship as crew, would be the Serenity. She may be a wreck, but the crew makes up for it.

    (FWIW, I've used most of these ships' names as names for the computers on my home network.)

  8. Anonymous4:06 PM

    Other great designs to consider:

    The Starfighter from Buck Rogers- a nice compact design which was originally designed to be the Colonial fighter for Battlestar: Galactica. It has a timeless look.

    A more dated ship would be the original Jupitor II from Lost in Space. What a classic bit of design, both ship and interior sets.

    If one likes the Eagles from Space:1999, the Starbug vehicle from Red Dwarf has a similar look and appeal (though the interior sets are no where as beautiful as the Eagle's).