After a one year hiatus, Hello Earth Productions are back with their third annual Outdoor Trek show. For those that don’t know, Outdoor Trek is a Star Trek theatre show performed in Dr. Blanche Lavizzo Park in Seattle. Each show is a recreation of a classic Star Trek episode. This year they decided to perform The Devil in the Dark AKA the one with the horta.
The Devil in the Dark is a wonderful example of classic Trek. While it features a weird, cheesy creature and it plays out like an old monster flick as the horta picks off the guards one by one, it also offers up the notion that the monster isn’t really a monster at all.
Kris Hambrick and Helen Parson return to Outdoor Trek as Kirk and Spock. Joining them this year is Shaina Ward Siegel as Doctor McCoy and Michael Bowers as Scotty. Paul Unwin plays Chief Engineer Vanderberg, whose team end up killing many of the hortas eggs while mining on Janus VI. After three productions playing Kirk and Spock both Parson and Hambrick have their roles down. Kris Hambrick is clearly comfortable playing Kirk, and really makes the character her own, although she does occasionally channel Shatner, which is precisely what the audience wants. Parsons too is able to channel Spock without ever making the character seem like a caricature. The best scenes of this production were easily the debates between Kirk and Spock as they struggle with what to do about the menacing horta.
So what does the horta look like? Actually, surprisingly not dissimilar to the one in the original 60s series. Okay, perhaps a little cuter than the one on the show. Being a stage production, a free show at that, staging is minimal but effective. The production makes good use of the amphitheatre space to recreate the tunnel scenes. It was very fun watching the horta stalk the guards around the stage and through the audience.
What else can I say? If you’re in Seattle, it’s well worth a trip out to see it. You don’t have to be a Star Trek fan to support this geeky production. They only have one more week to go, so check it out!