Thursday, October 27, 2011

Everyone's a silver hero, everyone's a Captain Kirk

Since I've been back in Korea, I've taken to watching Star Trek: The Original Series. I just finished watching "Miri," which is honestly a terrible episode. (Seriously? A planet that looks just like Earth?  Were all of the model and miniature builders on strike?  Never mind that none of the drama or the pathos or plot in the episode is at all relevant to the fact that it's "Earth, Jim, but not as we know it.") (McCoy never actually utters those lines but it felt appropriate, allow me the artistic license.)

The premise is, on Earth 2, people were working on a way to manifest immortality.  The result was a virus that would age you extremely slowly (one month every hundred years) until puberty hit, whereupon you turned into a shrill, buboes-covered zombie thing and then died.  Result? A planet full of children.   Three hundred years (assuming, of course, that the Earth twin moves around its own sun at a similar speed) of nothing but children.  At one point the children try to foil Kirk and company's attempt to find a  cure vaccine.  One of them—the titular Miri, who at maybe age 14 is Kirk's creepiest romantic conquest yet—leads Kirk to the shrieking hooligans.  Amid the ironic-I-guess?  background of their "playing school" setting he does his best to get them to listen to him.  Naturally, they don't.

All of this is to say that watching that ninety seconds of footage was like a mirror into my own (not necessarily current) life, though with better English: dealing with a room full of hyperactive defiant children, struggling to communicate key ideas and concepts to these monstrous little hellspawn, dying of a deadly plague...all part of the hagwon job.  Alas I can't find it isolated, and don't feel like downloading and learning how to use a video editing program just for that, so content yourself with the few seconds in the original broadcast preview for this episode.

 The next time I'm frustrated in a class, I'll just think to myself: what would Captain Kirk do?

Unfortunately the show doesn't really give us an answer. Instead, through the magic of editing, Kirk and the children show up to save the day, sans all that messy "classroom management" business.

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