Wednesday, August 8, 2012

"Do you believe these . . ." allusions to Shakespeare in Star Trek?

“Yesterday's Enterprise.” By Ira Steven Behr. Perf. Patrick Stewart, Jonathan Frakes, LeVar Burton, Michael Dorn, Gates McFadden, and Brent Spiner. Dir. David Carson. Star Trek: The Next Generation. Season 3, episode 15. Syndicated television. 17 February 1990. DVD. Paramount, 2002.

The line I cite in this post is almost certainly not deliberately drawn from Shakespeare—but only almost certainly.

The episode contains this line: "Do you believe this . . . Guinan?"

Perhaps the connection is more between the way the line is delivered in a film version of Hamlet that I've seen very frequently, but I hear an echo of a line Polonius delivers to Ophelia: "Do you believe his . . . tenders, as you call them?" (I.iii.101).

I include both lines in the clip below. You be the judge:

Note: Polonius' quote above comes from Hamlet. Dir. Kevin Kline. Perf. Kevin Kline and Diane Venora. 1990. DVD. Image Entertainment, 1990.

Links: The Episode at IMDB.

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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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