06) “I, Mudd” Original Airdate: (11/03/67) Remaster Airdate: (10/14/06)
As a character driven, largely landlocked episode, there were very few visual elements that needed to be enhanced for “Mudd.” The biggest eyesore in the original episode was Norman’s robotic innards, which were comprised of circuits, transistors, a spaghetti-tangle of wires and multicolored blinking lights (because that just screamed hi-tech in the 60s). Norman’s exposed abdomen now appears as a Borg-like apparatus with two spinning, circular data ports set into a metallic plate. The close-up shot, where Norman replaces his stomach cover is remarkably fluid and, curiously, appears even more seamless than Data’s access panels in TNG. One of the monitors above Spock’s station looks like a Horta with a red circle branded into it…it’s an ugly visual that, unfortunately, was ignored by the RM team. Mudd’s planet is now a canary yellow, which is quite a departure from the original drab orange-brown. Other than a nifty course correction scene and a few other external shots of the Enterprise in space and in orbit, there’s little else to comment on here…except for the breathtaking final shot of the ship breaking orbit, which now features a yellow ring system that wraps around the far side of the amber planet. The continuous 180 degree shot begins with the Enterprise sailing straight toward the camera, tracks the ship as it makes a starboard pass around Mudd’s planet and holds steady on the rear aspect of the ship as it heads out into deep space. It’s the perfect exclamation point to a highly entertaining Trek adventure.
Money Shot: The final “breaking orbit” panning shot with yellow rings encircling the planet.
Wish List: CG androids milling about in the background of various rooms and hallways on the planet to create the impression of an android population.
Remaster Grade: A