Friends, thanks to Arcade USA’s excellent video on the 1977 Dinky Toys Star Trek Enterprise toy from earlier today – it seems like it jarred a memory with Rockford Jay. I believe it is fair to say that between both Rockford Jay as well as fellow contributor Earl Green – you would be hard pressed to find bigger fans of Gene Roddenberry’s then novel idea of a television series that was described as “Wagon Train to the Stars”. So after my lunch break, Rockford asked if I remembered back in 1986 when you could call the Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home 900 number. I told him as I am sharing with you that I do not recall ever hearing of such a 900 number before – although I certainly do remember that Indiana Jones phone game in ’89. Rockford not only sparked my interest in this Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home 900 number but he even managed to track down a recording of what you could have heard back in 1986 – and much like the film itself there was ample comedy provided – in this case courtesy of both Nichelle Nichols and DeForest Kelley.
As James Doohan’s character of Scotty has always been my favorite from the original Star Trek series – Dr. McCoy’s comment about the Chief Engineer’s uniform having to be let out had me rolling with laughter. In addition I think we have to give a tip of the hat to whomever wrote that bit of fan service – where Uhura mentions both Captain John Christopher (Roger Perry) as well as Gary Seven (Robert Lansing). As I shared with you in my article on 1984’s Star Trek III: The Search for Spock – while my Father and I were both fans of the original Star Trek TV series… our appreciation of the films began to diverge. He disliked the third film quite a bit but that paled in comparison to his feelings on The Voyage Home – as 30 minutes into the film he was ready to call it quits. We were able to catch the film at a local Drive-In in my neck of the woods and I recall realizing that my Father was none too pleased by the lighter tone and modern day settings of the film.
Unlike when we saw Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, he disliked the movie so much that about 20 minutes later he decided to leave – he didn’t ask if I wanted to go – he just placed the speaker back on the pole and then he drove us home. I wasn’t able to see the end of the movie for myself until it reached home video – although thanks to schoolmates I did find out how the film ended.
While I did not have the opportunity to call the Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home 900 number back in 1986 – I am very grateful someone was able to record it for future Star Trek fans. I also want to give a big thanks again to Rockford Jay for sharing this interesting bit of pop culture history with us in the first place – he’s one in a million!