Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Harry Mudd Quotes As You Like It; James Kirk Quotes Hamlet

“I, Mudd.” By Marc Daniels. Perf. William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelley, and Nichelle Nichols. Dir. Stephen Kandel. Star Trek. Season 2, episode 8. NBC. 3 November 1967. DVD. Paramount, 2007.
“I, Mudd” presents two direct—though admittedly more incidental than not—quotes from Shakespeare.

Harry Mudd, in responding to a series of accusations from Kirk, ends the inquisition by saying, “And thereby hangs a tale.” He’s quoting Jaques (who is, in his turn, quoting Touchstone) in As You Like It.
’Tis but an hour ago since it was nine,
And after one hour more ’twill be eleven;
And so, from hour to hour, we ripe and ripe,
And then, from hour to hour, we rot and rot;
And thereby hangs a tale. (II.vii.23-27)
[Note: A similar line occurs in Othello: "O, thereby hangs a tale" (III.i.8).

Later, Kirk, in an attempt to confuse the logic circuits of the robots that hold them all prisoner (I’ll spare you the details), asks one of Hamlet’s rhetorical questions: “What is a man?” It’s similar to the “What a piece of work is a man!” speech he gives Rosencrantz and Guildenstern in Act II, scene ii. But it’s exactly like the speech he makes while pondering Fortinbras’ sally on Poland:
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . What is a man,
If his chief good and market of his time
Be but to sleep and feed? A beast, no more. (IV.iv.33-35)
At the end of his speech, Norman (the chief android) points out that "Dreams are not real." I think Kirk is about to launch into “I could be bounded in a nutshell,” but the plot moves on before he can do so:

Links: Shakespeare and Star Trek Complete.

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Bardfilm is normally written as one word, though it can also be found under a search for "Bard Film Blog." Bardfilm is a Shakespeare blog (admittedly, one of many Shakespeare blogs), and it is dedicated to commentary on films (Shakespeare movies, The Shakespeare Movie, Shakespeare on television, Shakespeare at the cinema), plays, and other matter related to Shakespeare (allusions to Shakespeare in pop culture, quotes from Shakespeare in popular culture, quotations that come from Shakespeare, et cetera).

Unless otherwise indicated, quotations from Shakespeare's works are from the following edition:
Shakespeare, William. The Riverside Shakespeare. 2nd ed. Gen. ed. G. Blakemore Evans. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1997.
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