A Place to Park It

My first attempt at some movie style Officer’s Quarters

tmp_oq_001Curvy walls in the office area. Rumor has it, this area is called the “cove.”

After a long procrastination of any such similar project, I finally decided I would start working on the movie style officer’s quarters. Naturally, it’ll be based on the original TMP design structure, but will incorporate style elements from its subsequent TWOK and TSFS appearances. This is because there were so many significant changes between the first and later films, as well as demonstrable redressings of the set to serve as multiple locations in those first three films alone: Kirk’s officer quarters, Ilia’s slightly smaller cabin, Spock’s quarters, and finally a quick stint as Captain Styles’ bunk aboard Excelsior.
Very much an early work in progress, this is what I managed to put together last weekend.

tmp_oq_002The built-in berth sans cushions. It sports a shelf along the back wall and lighted soffit above.

The fully realized movie design consisted of several discreet spaces serving their assigned function. Immediately upon entry from the corridor, there is something of a tiny ante-room type space. Like a mini-foyer, it seems to help better separate the corridor from what is obviously the larger sleeping area just a few steps further in. This sleeping area features a cushioned berth or bunk built directly into the bulkhead structure, replete with shelving and an overhead soffit with lighting and who knows what other features. Turning just to the right while facing this bunk area, is the seemingly open entry to the cabin’s head or bathroom. Though presumably a fully functional facility, the sonic shower’s large cylindrical installation, directly beyond the entryway’s jambs, was the only service element ever revealed onscreen. Finally, in terms of set construction, there is an office area just to the left of the bunk replete sliding divider walls; They are mostly transparent, yet yield a smokey dark tint. Certain production plans and blueprints indicate this office area was referred to as “The Cove.”

Kirk’s two versions, from TMP and TWOK, sported the most drastic transformation between films, going from stark austere to just-this-side of lush cigar bar. The office area in TMP seemed to have mostly smooth yet cold hard surfaces. It included an interlocking table/chair combo in the center of the room. The chairs formed an integrated design with the table while parked, but slid out on rails for seating purposes.

A colorful control console was mounted on the main curved wall, while perpendicular to that, the flat back wall showcased a large inset view screen. Several screen shots from the film reveal yet another door in the far back reaches of the room.

A large rectangular lighting rig was suspended across most of the cove’s ceiling area, in TMP. For TWOK, this would be replaced with three structural support trusses stretching across the ceiling from one curved wall to the other. The curved walls themselves would be lined with far more decorative elements, and the central table was removed entirely. The control panel was relocated to the far end, which replaced the large view screen unit with a new and deeper communications nook.

Ilia’s smaller quarters were apparently seen twice in TMP (very likely the same location, though never confirmed), and was a mere modification of overall interior space, made by walling off half the available set. This wild wall was formed to fit at the edge of the sleeping area before the office space divider, and incorporated a built in vanity counter with mirrors and drawers.

Spock’s variation, seen in TWOK and only slightly altered again for TSFS, sported a specialized area in one corner of the cove, which served Spock as a nook for ritualistic meditation. The communications nook seen in Kirk’s space was covered over with a large bedazzled IDIC tapestry. No camera angle in TWOK ever revealed this precise corner in Kirk’s quarters, but it was a noticeable departure from on screen perspectives teased at in TMP.

tmp_oq_003bSonic shower: Configuration 1.


I was also able to look at a significant number of screen shots from the earlier TNG episodes, in order to garner some insight into the movie style construction. The set remained remarkably similar to its movie roots for most of the 1st two seasons, before more dramatic modifications began to creep in towards the end of season two.

tmp_oq_003cSonic shower: Configuration 2.

The most notable changes adopted in the early TNG episodes removed the smaller bunk and soffit, and replaced it with a larger framed bedding area. Though I have no confirmation, I suspect part of that framing might actually be Spock’s meditation nook repurposed as a seating area, or for parking the head rests of beds. The vanity used in Ilia’s quarters was probably repurposed for use in this section as well. There is also very obviously a curved and translucent outer door at the head’s entryway which was not visible in TMP. It totally obscures the sonic shower and area beyond. I’m not exactly sure when this redress of the shower area actually took place: If it happened for TWOK (where it was never clearly focused on) or if it happened closer to the refurbishments applied for the TNG production.

More to come.


~ by starstation on September 29, 2015.

6 Responses to “A Place to Park It”

  1. This is looking fantastic so far. My hat’s off to you for tackling something this big.

    Not to split hairs, but how do we know the sonic shower scene was Ilia’s quarters? The computer just said “officer quarters.” It could have been any officer’s quarters.

    The changes between movies were, of course, due to vandalizing. Apparently, the TMP sets were in pretty bad shape by the time they looked at them for filming TWOK. Though, as there are many years (a decade or so) between films, it makes sense that the ship would have changed some in that time.

    • Thanks so much. I’m glad you’re liking it.

      Oh, I agree that the sonic shower scene could have been in anybody’s quarters (or even no one’s yet for that matter), hence my caveat of “never confirmed.”

      Still, V’Ger snatched Ilia and used her form, right down to her memory patterns, to create a more facilitating and communicative probe. V’ger might have found the carbon units unfathomable, but its direct use of one as a template to bridge its own gap of misunderstanding simply screamed “consequences” from the moment we heard “You are the Kirk-unit…”

      I’ve always had the sneaking suspicion that when the Ilia-probe arrived on Enterprise, it was already making use of those memories, even if on some purely sub-conscious level, thus she initially returned to her own most personal space (recent acquisition though it might have been). Granted it’s just speculation, but Kirk was able to one-punch an input on a small control pad, and had that probe dried, robed, and ready to go in seconds (in form fitting high heels no less), all with some never fully elaborated upon technology. Could that input have been her own personal off-duty settings? Still, it’s just speculation, but a thought I’ve always had in the back of my mind. It’s ironic that we would split hairs over a Deltan though. 😉

      That’s interesting about the set vandalizing; I’d never heard about that. I have heard about how insistent Nicholas Meyer was about Horatio Hornblowing those sets, both to rid the designs of their sterilized nature in general, and to help infuse them with that “sense-of-the-nautical” he was aiming toward.

      Indeed, the strong aesthetic contrast between films is easily explained away (in universe) when you take into account the hurried nature of the TMP mission, essentially dragging the ship out of drydock before its 23rd century paint has had a chance dry. Though habitable, she was incomplete and less than prepared for a full crew and all their full creature comforts. And yes, the presumed elapse of time between films also helps to reinforce this idea.

      • I think it’s hilarious that Kirk punched in some settings and gave her an outfit that showed off most of “the goods.” Makes you wonder *whose* setting that was. 😉 Though, I just looked in the novel, those were Ilia’s quarters. So, it could have been her standard bath robe setting.

        Yeah, apparently, the sets being vandalized were one of the issues that Harve Bennett had to put up with for TWOK. (source: The Art of Star Trek) That was a major issue, as Paramount had told him he didn’t have much of a budget to work with and that he needed to re-use stuff form the first film. (also, the Enterprise was missing)

  2. Ohh !!! Thiat’s going to be good! That ‘s going to be very good !!!
    I’m really excited!

  3. I’m really excited!
    great work, thanks it’s so useful for me
    nice pic and i love it! 🙂

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