Saturday, February 28, 2015

He Lived Long, and Prospered

So, sad to hear the news about Leonard Nimoy, who will always be remembered as 'Mr. Spock'.  I remember seeing the first few episodes of STAR TREK when they were first being broadcast, about the time I started first grade, and finding them terrifying -- in particular people being disintegrated in the teleporter room (at least that's what it looked like to me) gave me nightmares.  I didn't really become a fan until second grade, when I remember us playing Star Trek during recess and everybody wanting to be Mr. Spock --except me, who preferred Scotty or, better yet, Dr. McCoy. But there was no doubt Spock was the breakout character, the Fonzie or Vinnie Barbarino of his day. Spock was the one who taught us all that it was okay and more than okay to be different. And while the original series of Star Trek is now looked on more or less as a campy joke, that's not how we thought of it at the time: we took it seriously. Though Nimoy had a credible career afterwards, he's a good example of someone who got typecast early on, rebelled against it, and eventually came to terms with the career-defining role that made him rich, famous, and the object of much affection.

But just to show that his talents were best spent as Mr. Spock rather than, say, a singer -- and because this being me, there has to be a Tolkien connection somewhere, here he is performing "The Ballad of Bilbo Baggins" in what is, I suppose, the first Tolkien music video. There doesn't seem to be an official version up, but here's one of many found scattered across the net: Enjoy!

And, just for fun, here's an extra: cast members from the Peter Jackson HOBBIT doing a read-aloud of the lyrics of the 'Ballad'

So, goodbye Mr. Nimoy, and goodbye Mr. Spock, and thanks.

--John R.
current (re)reading: THE DARKEST ROAD by G. G. Kay

THE WIFE SAYS: Your examples of breakout characters is dated!
--Fair enough.

1 comment:

David Bratman said...

Not only are they dated, they're peanuts next to Spock. Spock is one of the most iconic characters of all time, a genuine archetype. I don't think he has any equivalent in television. His peers of modern creation are ones of literary/film amalgamated origin: Tarzan, Dracula, Sherlock Holmes.