In May 1999, Paramount Domestic Television splurged on the outgoing Deep Space Nine by sending some rather large items to the stations carrying the show’s final season. The curved, pie-wedge case seen below stood over two feet tall, and opened up to display a nice shot of the wormhole. Part of that shot was a separate dossier which could be removed, containing photos, publicity material, and other information.
The textured background image on the outer case is actually a very, very enlarged picture of the Defiant. The oval-shaped Star Trek “egg” symbol was printed on both the case and the dossier in silver foil, while the show logo itself was printed in blue foil on the outer case. It’s a gorgeous piece of packaging.
Both the outer case and the dossier inside it could be closed with velcro fasteners.
The inside of the case’s “door”, as well as the back of the sculpture (which I’ll get to in a moment), contain the following quote from AndrÃ¨ Malraux:
And when Man faces Destiny, Destiny ends and Man comes into his own.
A couple of weeks after this large case arrived, Paramount shipped a very large and heavy box to each of its Deep Space Nine affiliate stations. After digging through a mile of bubble wrap, I was floored to discover what Gary Holland and his people had cooked up for us this time. It was a roughly four inch tall solid pewter sculpture of a viewscreen (which holds a photo of the wormhole between two pieces of glass), a floating DS9 station, and a base with the stardate of the final episode.
This was a far cry from the days of season four, when Paramount bought a bunch of the Playmates DS9 station toys, had them spray-painted silver, and attached them to a mobile of planets and Starfleet symbols. This was a truly classy sendoff. This baby will probably help put my kids through college someday. In the meantime, I’m elated to have it sitting on my shelf, primarily because I can never afford to buy a solid pewter anything!
Another neat item Paramount sent out, around the beginning of the seventh season, was the folder containing the photos and publicity material for the then-upcoming season. Unusually, it opened upward on a hinge, but the most unique feature was the somewhat flimsy holographic-patterned disk on the front with a Starfleet emblem. (As you can see from the photo at left, the adhesive has weakened and the flexible disc appears to have “buckled” on the front cover.)
All in all, Paramount seldom skimped when pitching Deep Space Nine to the stations who had already bought it. After examining these assorted goodies, one can’t help but wonder if perhaps that considerable publicity muscle would have been better focused on the viewing public.
Of course, Paramount continued to spend lavish amounts of cash to sell Star Trek to its affiliate stations; click here to see the enormous photon torpedo that was sent to stations carrying the nightly syndicated run of Star Trek: Voyager.