Captain Kirk: Gold shirt or green shirt, and why?

In order to answer this question we need to separate it into its contingent parts. The first part is an examination of Kirk -- should he appear clothed or unclothed? Many people feel that he was at his best when adorned only with a few "powder burns" and some fake blood -- as if he had just survived an epic battle and had his clothes torn off in the struggle. Being unclothed signifies "Kirk In Action" (KIA) and implies a more exciting episode. In fact, the climaxes of most Star Trek episodes coincide with a high incidence of KIA signifiers.

You might ask why Kirk would appear clothed at all, considering the frissons of excitement his bare chest causes. The answer is, of course, you can't have too much of a good thing. He must appear clothed most of the time in order to help viewers really appreciate KIA when it occurs.

However, his clothing should foreshadow the KIA to come; it should build suspense through out the episode. When the climax and resulting disrobing finally occur, the audience should be in a frenzy of anticipation.

So the real question here is: is green or gold a more effective color to engender that frenzy in the audience?

My answer is, without a doubt, gold. The gold foreshadows the lightly tanned pecs the audience is waiting for while the green implies a mouldy, unwashed Kirk. Star Trek costume designers were hoping the green would enhance Kirk's aura of virility, but in focus groups they found that the green reminded most viewers of a well-aged stilton. After pursuing the issue in tests across the country they found that a very small minority of the audience fantasized about taking the shirt off of a well-aged stilton and so the color was designated as a "bones-only*" color.

* further tests found that more viewers fantasized about mouldy cheese than about Dr. McCoy. Costume designers hoped the color would improve his image by associating him with the color.

By: hello kitty


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