The eleventh Star Trek feature film, named simply Star Trek, opened over the weekend to rave reviews. Trek fans have waited years for this prequel that tells the story of how Kirk, Spock, and the crew came to be together aboard the Enterprise. Already the movie has engendered new interest in what is now known as The Original Series (TOS) which aired from 1966 to 1969. New interest means merchandising! There are still mint condition toys, gadgets, and other items available that tied in to TOS from the 60s and 70s, but they are in the hands of professional collectors and devoted Trekkers. The pros will sell you merchandise at stratospheric prices, but you won't get a devoted Trekker to part with theirs at all. However, there are some "new retro" items available to meet the new demand.
A tricorder would tell you everything about anything. What kind of life forms are behind that rock? What's wrong with the ship? Is he dead, Jim? Point a tricorder and get all the answers! Now you can have your very own tricoder with appropriate display and sound effects! Well, now exactly now, but on June 4th these will be available from Amazon for $49.99. It's eight inches tall, looks just like the gadget in TOS, and runs on four AA batteries.
A communicator was basically a intergalactic walkie-talkie allowing voice communication between the Enterprise crew members even if they were on different planets. In 1966 this was a super cool idea, since no one had a cell phone and even two-way radios were bulky and limited. Now wireless is everywhere, but if you want to feel like a Starfleet officer, you can get the Star Trek USB Communicator Internet Phone. The look is right, but they neglected to include the very thing that made the communicator great. This phone is not wireless! It plugs into your computer with a six-foot cord, completely missing the point. It looks like the original, though, and makes the appropriate sounds. Get yours for $43.
Psst! You can also get a communicator that's not a phone and is truly wireless from Amazon for $22.99.
Star Trek toys from your childhood (or your parent's childhood) are being reissued.Â The Star Trek Retro Bridge Playset is a plastic rendering of the bridge of the Enterprise, where executive decisions were made and evasive action was taken. It features a transporter and interchangeable view screens. It folds up nicely for storage, too. It's yours for $52.95.
If you have any money left over, you could go see the movie. Live long and prosper.