Category Archives: Kevin Dilmore

The Curious Case of The Scorpion and the Copious Colors of Canopies

Star Trek: Nemesis images.

2002’s Star Trek: Nemesis included a scene with Picard and Data escaping in a Scorpion-class ship. In 2003, Hallmark released The Scorpion ornament and it is the only Star Trek ornament that involved both Lynn Norton (ship sculpt) and Anita Marra Rogers (character sculpts) together. Each artist was known for sculpting dozens of Star Trek ornaments during their career. Unfortunately, The Scorpion went under some last minute changes and Rogers work has gone mostly unseen for years.

Look closely beyond the smoked canopy of the Scorpion ornament, and you may discern painted figures of Captain Picard and Data in the cockpit as sculpted by Keepsake Artist Anita Marra Rogers. Original designs for the ornament included a transparent canopy on the ornament, but changed to match the studio model used for filming. The change came too late to alter photographs on the ornament’s retail box and other Hallmark publications, which clearly show the figures.

Kevin Dilmore, startrek.com
The Scorpion ornament with a darkened canopy.
Promotional images showing a clear canopy.

I recently received an email from a reader who was following up on our conversation about the canopy’s shading in The Scorpion’s comments section two years ago.

I am the original poster who inquired about the lighter canopy Scorpion ornaments a couple years back. I see that there were some recent updates on the thread and I thought I’d comment on what I’ve found out regarding the topic. Please feel free to post any of this info to your website if you think it is useful.

While I have never found an ornament with a completely clear canopy as shown on the box, I can confirm that there are contrasting shades of canopies that differ from ornament to ornament. I’ve attached some photos of an ornament I acquired on ebay earlier this year with a lighter canopy next to an ornament with a darker canopy that I’ve had for some time. The difference looks somewhat subtle on camera, but is more apparent in person. I used to have an ornament with an even darker, almost black canopy which I sold off some time ago in favor of one with more visible figures.

So I’ve found that there are multiple variations of this ornament to suit your taste. You can own one with a very dark canopy which is more faithful to the film, or a lighter one which better shows the figures in the cockpit. Most seem to be somewhere in the middle. The good news is that this is one of the more affordable ornaments on ebay and other online marketplaces, so it is cheap to acquire the one you want or to collect multiple variations if you are so inclined.

I hope this information is helpful or at least interesting for someone.

Thanks,
Rob

P.S.
Thank you for all of the great information on this website. Because of you, I was able to acquire an HMS Bounty ornament last week to add to my collection. So as always, thanks and keep up the good work!

Rob’s images comparing canopy tints.

There seems to be a wide range of tints available on The Scorpion which result in quite different ornaments. If you have the blackened canopy the ornament could be almost any spaceship since it isn’t one of the recognizable iconic ship designs known in the Star Trek universe. If you have a clearer canopy, the images of Picard and Data turn the ornament from a generic sci-fi spaceship to a true Star Trek ornament.

A big ‘thank you’ to Rob for the information, his photos and the very kind words.

2021 Keepsake Ornament Debut Delayed Two Weeks

NEW EVENT DATES! Ornament Debut | October 16-24

Shipping challenges are affecting Hallmark’s product availability for the holiday season. To ensure the best selection possible, they have rescheduled this event to October 16-24 (previously Oct. 2 – 10), with early KOC shopping available on Oct. 15. Holiday Open House (HOH) has moved back by one week to Nov. 12 – 21 (previously Nov. 5 – 14).

Star Trek™ Mirror, Mirror Collection Ensign Pavel Chekov Ornament With Light and Sound & Star Trek: Picard™ La Sirena Ornament With Sound due out October 16, 2021.

Although a number of October ornaments have been pushed back to November there is no word of either Star Trek ornaments being delayed.

Resellers Overcharging for the Star Trek™ HMS Bounty Klingon™ Bird-of-Prey Metal Ornament

A word of warning not to buy/preorder the overpriced HMS Bounty that is showing up on eBay. The event exclusive ornament will be available to buy from home on July 23, 2021 at Noon E.S.T. and October 7, 2021 at Noon E.S.T. There will be a limited amount so be sure to log in early.

Updated photo 7/16/21. Went from two sellers to five sellers overnight.

HOW TO PURCHASE POPMINDED EXCLUSIVES

This year, we will offer event exclusives ONLINE ONLY in conjunction with the following events, typically attended in person: Comic-Con@Home, scheduled July 23-25, 2021, and New York Comic Con, scheduled October 7-10, 2021. Product allotments will be divided evenly between the two convention timeframes. Exclusives will be sold on a first-come basis starting at Noon Eastern Time (9 a.m. Pacific Time, 11 a.m. Central Time) on the first day of each convention.

Additionally, small quantities…will be allotted for sale to Keepsake Ornament Club Members. For more information on membership, go to hallmark.com/ornaments/keepsake-ornament-club.

For details on how to purchase exclusives, visit PopMinded.com/Events and expect the PopMinded convention shop to return in-person, to a full line-up of events in 2022.

For more information about PopMinded by Hallmark and the products offered, visit PopMinded.com.

Hallmark.com

Product Details

  • Designed by Jake Angell, this metal Keepsake Ornament comes pre-packaged in a box for easy gift giving, preservation and storage. Dated 2021 in copyright.
  • PopMinded™ event exclusive ornament and one of only 3,750 issued. Limited availability while supplies last, not available in stores.
  • Originally created for 2021 San Diego Comic-Con, New York Comic Con and select events.
  • Metal Christmas tree ornament measures 4.5″ W x 0.58″ H x 2.89″ D.

Star Trek Communicator Article, 1998

1998, Deep Space Nine and Voyager were on the air and Star Trek: Insurrection was in theaters. Hallmark had only released its 16th and 17th Star Trek ornaments and Kevin Dilmore interviewed longtime Hallmark Star Trek artists Anita Marra Rogers and Lynn Norton for Star Trek Communicator magazine. The magazine, a bimonthly publication of the Official Star Trek Fan Club, folded in 2005.

A big ‘thank you’ to the wonderful reader who sent me this article.

Star Trek Communicator, Issue 119 (October November 1998)

“It is Paramount’s criteria that the characters do not have a hook in any part of their bodies. Therefore, we have to incorporate a part of their environment with them as a vehicle to place the ornament hook.”

Anita Marra Rogers

Within two years Seven of Nine would have a hook driven into her cranium, a practice that continues with character ornaments to this day.

Top Left: An example of the “environment” that was required to avoid skewering a character’s body.
Top Right: In the early days, Hallmark would sometimes implement a ‘fish hook’ design which swept a hook over a character’s head.
Bottom Left: Seven of Nine’s head wound in 2000.
Bottom Right: Picard’s unfortunate hook placement in 2017 resembled some sort of torture device. “THERE ARE FOUR LIGHTS!”

Artist Inspirations: Storytellers

Evil Spock in the Transporter room “welcoming” the away team.
Spock went from arms crossed to the Terran Empire’s salute. I’m glad they didn’t make the ornament based off the far right image.
Good Uhura just after shutting down Evil Sulu’s advances.
Evil Chekov in an attempted coup after disembarking the Turbolift with Kirk.
Left: Evil Sulu in a second attempted coup.
Right: The blade of the dagger is turned fat side out so you can see it from your couch when the ornament is hanging on the tree.
In the episode, “Mirror, Mirror”, Kirk is never seen in the power stance with arms akimbo like the ornament depicts (A). He can be seen most of the time in his space-cowboy-strutting position (B) and once in the I-found-a-new-woman-in-my-room pose (C) and once in his I’m-gonna-kick-bad-Sulu’s-butt position (D). Kirk is the only Storyteller of the five released so far that isn’t based on a screen image from the episode.

Artist Inspirations: Uhura (2007-2020)

Uhura in her iconic pose, left hand up to her ear and elbow pointed out, was recreated in Keepsake form in 2007.
Left: Uhura in “The Carbonite Maneuver”.
Right: The 2009 convention exclusive ornament is a simple repaint of the 2007 Uhura in red, happily, she strikes her famous pose wearing gold in the “The Carbonite Maneuver” (S:1, E:10). The back of the Hallmark box states Uhura had only wore gold in that one episode although she had donned it previously in “Mudd’s Women” (S:1,E:6).
Left: Nichelle Nichols as Uhura in a 1966 publicity still.
Right: 2015 Legends Series: Uhura ornament with slightly less hair and missing the front overlap on her skirt.
Left: Uhura in “Mirror, Mirror” (S:2, E:4).
Right: 2020 Storytellers Series: Uhura ornament.

How Much Will the HMS Bounty Cost? *UPDATED*

It is still announcement day for the 2021 Hallmark Star Trek Event exclusive ornament and we have a contradiction in pricing. Corporate and PopMinded have pricing at $35 while the main order page has the Keepsake listed at $40 (See below for screen shots).

corporate.hallmark.com
PopMinded.com
Hallmark.com



6/29/21 UPDATE:

Pricing on Hallmark’s website has been adjusted down to $35:

Artist Inspirations: Scene Ornaments (2004-2019)

The City on the Edge of Forever (2004)
The action shot of Spock and Kirk jumping through the portal is a sculpt inspired by their jump from the past (middle), not to the past (left).
Locutus of Borg (2005)
“Star Trek: First Contact”, Borg Queen and Locutus.
The Trouble with Tribbles (2008)
Unfortunately, Kirk’s eyes closely resemble Mr. Magoo’s in this otherwise accurate sculpt.
The Menagerie (2009)
Kirk and Spock are at slightly different angles to Pike compared to their position in the episode. The ornament has Kirk turned toward Pike 45 degrees while Spock is more squared up and perpendicular to him.
Amok Time (2010)
Any slight difference in the positioning of the Vulcan lirpas is quickly drowned out by the fantastic battle music that accompanies the ornament. Unfortunately, the sculpt depicts Kirk moments before his shirt is sliced open. We could use a torn-shirt Kirk ornament in a bad way.
Mirror, Mirror (2011)
In the episode, McCoy is pressed against the computer bank. In the sculpt, there is distance between him and the wall and his head in leaning back.
An Extraordinary Meeting (2012)
If you are wondering why the artist has the Spocks standing in front
of a wall adorned with the Federation’s delta insignia…
“Put aside logic, do what feels right”.
Arena (2013)
(A,B) The Gorn approaches a trapped Kirk and (C) raises his dagger, (D) the episode breaks for commercial, (E) the Gorn reaches out toward the rock, (F) grabs the rock and (G) pulls it away allowing Kirk to escape

This ornament is a view we never see on screen. It is the moment that occurs in image (F) but from the camera angle we are familiar with from image C. No explanation why the ornament does not include the vine netting around Kirk’s leg.
The Devil in the Dark (2014)
Spock’s elbows are bent and his forearms placed more vertically on the close shots (bottom left) while in the long shots his arms are more outstretched with his forearms horizontal (top). Spock’s boot and legs are exact copies from the long shots. The ornament is a blend of the different shots.
The Needs of the Many (2015)
While most (WARNING: 39 year old spoilers ahead!) of Spock’s death scene in The Wrath of Khan is shot from Kirk’s side of the glass, from the moment Kirk puts his hand on the glass until Spock’s actual demise, the scene is all shot from Spock’s side of the glass. While the ornament can be viewed from both sides it is impossible to reproduce the movie camera’s perspective from the back of the ornament. In the end, we get an ornament of a classic scene from Kirk’s perspective.
The Man Trap (2016)
Kirk and the Salt Vampire.
The Naked Time (2018)
(A) Sulu enters the bridge, (B) Sulu’s guard arm is raised in the scorpion position, (C) Kirk ducks Sulu’s lunge, (D) Kirk jumps over the bridge railing to the lower level, (E) Sulu resumes the scorpion position, (F) Sulu holding Uhura faces Kirk, (G) Uhura’s struggles draws Sulu’s attention, (H) Uhura breaks away

Sulu’s likeness is captured from image B or E. Kirk’s stance is closest to that of F or G. Kirk’s position to the sword is never closer than that in image C. The Naked Time ornament marries many moments in the scene to capture an iconic but nonexistent moment in time.
Saru and Burnham (2019)
Burnham gives Georgiou’s telescope to Saru in the first season episode “Choose Your Pain”. In the episode, the pair simply stand in front of the telescope case which sits on a table and the ornament depicts them in a similar standing position but with Saru holding the case, a moment we never see appear on screen.

2021 Top 10 Hallmark Star Trek Ornaments: #1

#1: 2001 Space Station Deep Space Nine

Retail: $32.00
2021 Secondary Market: $67.95
Size: 5 1/2” Dia. x 3 1/4” H (4 1/2” H with base)
Code: QX6065

We have finally reached #1 on our Top 10 list! The Deep Space Nine space-station of 2001 is a gorgeous sculpt and stands head and shoulders above the others. The ornament was sculpted by longtime Star Trek ship artist, Lynn Norton:

“I have to say that the “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” space-station ornament is still my favorite. It was the most challenging sculpture for me and the Keepsake engineering staff,” he says. “My idea to offer it with docked miniature starship ornaments turned out to be a winning combination with Star Trek fans.”

hallmark.com, 2016

The Hallmark space-station includes a detachable base. When off the base the ornament can be hung from a tree and when attached it can be displayed on a desk or shelf and enables the Magic Light and Sound function. The display base is powered by two AAA batteries and, once the button is depressed, it illuminates yellow lights at the primary docking ring airlocks and a red light at the fusion reactor.

Blueprints courtesy of universostartrek.com.

The base also powers the audio function which allows you to hear the words of Captain Sisko from the series finale of Deep Space Nine:

“To the best crew a Captain ever had. No matter what the future holds, no matter how far we travel . . . a part of us will always remain here, on Deep Space Nine.”

-Captain Sisko, “What You Left Behind”

To top everything off, this is an ornament that actually displays six other ornaments. When Hallmark’s Ships of Trek was released six years earlier there really wasn’t a place the three pack of miniatures could be safely hung on the tree. The mini ships of 1995 and 2001 (see below) were way too small to display properly on a tree and there was always a danger of them being accidentally tossed out with the tree in January. The space-station includes a hook on each of the three upper docking pylons and three on the docking ring. Although not to scale, the ships look fantastic and take the Deep Space Nine ornament to another level.

1995 Ships of Trek (left), 2001 Star Trek Legends (right)

We have reached the end of our list and it wasn’t easy winnowing it down to just ten ornaments. It was difficult to not include ornaments like 2000’s Borg Cube, 2002’s Enterprise NX-01, 2010’s Amok Time, 2013’s Arena and 2016’s The Man Trap. Depending on the day any one of those ornaments could make the Top 10 but there is never a question that the #1 spot will still belong to the Deep Space Nine space-station.

2021 Top 10 Hallmark Star Trek Ornaments: #2

#2: 2011 U.S.S. Defiant

Retail: $32.95
2021 Secondary Market: $2,499.95
Size: 5 1/4” L x 2 1/2” W x 1 3/4” H
Code: QMP4068
Quantity: 700

When I was a youngster one of my favorite cereal prizes were those that glowed in the dark. It was a rare day for any box of cereal to make it from the brown paper shopping bag to the cabinet before I ripped into the box to dig out my reward. When a box would show up with a glow-in-the dark prize it was an even bigger event.

It would be the same process every time: rip open the cereal box, plunge my grubby hands down into the box up to my elbows; first on one side of the box and then the other side. I remember that brief moment of panic when the prize would be hidden extra deep. Then my fingers would hit that familiar cellophane wrapper and the buried treasure would slowly rise from the depths, cereal spilling out across the table.

I would attempt to close up the box but it would now have that bloated center where the cardboard packaging had stretched out and the tab would no longer reach the slot on the opposite flap. But this was no time for food storage etiquette so off I would go, leaving behind the opened box of tomorrow’s stale breakfast. After a brief stop at the highest wattage in the house, my hands dangerously close to a light bulb, I was off to the darkest place in the house…the family bathroom. It was there that skeletons would magically dance in the mirror’s blackness, warning stickers would reveal themselves in all their glory, or spiders would come alive. The glow-in-the-dark technology was beyond that of rocket science to a six year old boy, it was magic.

Fast forward nearly four decades and Hallmark produces a repaint exclusive of their 2006 Enterprise ornament:

Commissioned in the mid-23rd century, the U.S.S. Defiant served as one of 13 Constitution-class starships that explored strange new worlds on behalf of the United Federation of Planets.  In the classic Star Trek episode “The Tholian Web” (1968), the Defiant became trapped in an area of spatial interphase between universes, the properties of which gave the starship an eerie green glow before it was consumed by a rift to suffer an uncertain fate. This special edition ornament is one of 700 issued for and only available at the 2011 New York Comic-Con Event.

2011 Defiant Keepsake Box Text

Every Christmas season since 2011, Hallmark reintroduces me to the glow-in-the-dark technology of my childhood. When the Christmas tree lights go off at the end of a long day, the Defiant Keepsake remains glowing in the darkness of space and always bringing a smile to my face.

The glowing aspect of the ornament may not bring back childhood memories for everyone. The secondary market prices may put a stale taste in the mouths of collectors but this ornament does exactly what it sets out to do in the simplest of ways. No batteries. No cord. No Magic sound. No Magic lights. No Magic motion. Just good old fashioned magic, glow-in-the-dark magic, the magic of childhood.

NINE down, one to go. Next time we reach #1 on our Top 10 list.

2021 Top 10 Hallmark Star Trek Ornaments: #6

#6: 2016 Enterprise “Pilot” Painted Event Edition

Retail: $30.00
2021 Secondary Market: $395.95
Size: 6” L x 2 1/2” W x 1 1/2” H
Code: QMP4099
Quantity: 3,450

#6 on our list is a repaint of the 2016 50th anniversary Hallmark store ornament. The Keepsake available in stores was an all gold version of the early Enterprise while the Event Edition, which was released the same year, was a screen accurate painted version. Both ornaments played Kirk’s opening monologue and the Star Trek theme song.

Lynn Norton commented about his work on the the ornament in a 2015:

“This is the one that I really went out of my way to make as accurate as possible. I based it on the original shooting model with its larger bridge dome, larger deflector dish and nacelle features as a tribute to the series’ 50th anniversary. Assuming it’s able to maintain all of its details in final production, it’s more accurate than anything I’ve done before.”

startrek.com

The decision seems odd for Hallmark to make the gold Enterprise the more widely available ornament and the painted version available as the Event Exclusive. It seems both versions would have benefited in the other’s release plan. The recognizable repaint available to the mass market would have been a safe and possibly more successful way to go and the limited gold version would have still been sought after by collectors.

Above: 2016 Enterprise Event Exclusive painted Star Trek pilot ornament.
Below: 11’ Enterprise model pictured on December 29, 1964.


Star Trek is one of those rare television shows that had two pilots. The original 11’ Enterprise model that was made for Star Trek’s pilot, The Cage filmed in late 1964, would be altered between pilots and again before the series aired. Most notably, lights were added to the model for the filming of Star Trek’s second pilot Where No Man Has Gone Before filmed in July of 1965. The easiest way to discern the differences between the first and second pilot ship designs is the vent grating at the back of the warp nacelles.

Top: First pilot (The Cage) Enterprise with plain rear nacelles.
Middle: Second pilot (Where No Man Has Gone Before) Enterprise with vent grating.
Bottom: The Star Trek series Enterprise with space matrix restoration coils.
Nacelles with vent grating on Hallmark’s 2016 repaint ornament.

As you can see, the Event Exclusive Enterprise’s vent grating is present placing the ship firmly as a Where No Man Has Gone Before ornament. Once the series began filming its official run in May of 1966 the Enterprise would again be altered dropping the needles on the front of the nacelles and adding the space matrix restoration coils* on the rear.

*I’m not really a nerd but more of a researcher**. Source: cygnus-x1.net
**Okay, running a Hallmark Star Trek website constitutes me as a nerd. I get it!

The next time we DROP in on the Top 10 it will be at #5.

2021 Top 10 Hallmark Star Trek Ornaments: #7

#7: 2004 “The City on the Edge of Forever”

Retail: $28.00
2021 Secondary Market: $59.95
Size: 3 5/8” H x 4 1/8” W x 2 3/4” D
Code: QXI4094

The City on the Edge of Forever is probably the best hour in all of of Star Trek television. We witness the tragic love story of Kirk and Edith Keeler in this time traveling episode. The Enterprise crew comes across the Guardian of Forever, a doorway to any time and place, where we see Kirk and Spock take that fateful leap into Earth’s past.

The ornament portal flickers to the booming voice of the Guardian which sets this apart from most other Hallmark ornaments with show dialogue.

Captain Kirk: What are you?
The Guardian: I am the Guardian of Forever.
Captain Kirk: Are you a machine or being?
The Guardian:  I am both and neither.  I am my own beginning, my own end.

Spock:  A time portal, Captain.  A gateway to other times and dimensions, if I am correct.
The Guardian:  Behold! A gateway to your own past, if you wish.

The Guardian:  Time has resumed its shape.  All is as it was before.  Many such journeys are possible.  Let me be your gateway.

Unfortunately, this ornament is notorious for failing. There is a capacitor that overheats and causes the sound to quit working. Not all is lost, you can find YouTube repair videos and eBay restoration services online to get your ornament back in working condition. This is an awesome ornament when it is working as intended and deservedly sits at #7 in the Top 10.

Location of capacitor known to overheat and fail.

The action pose of Spock and Kirk jumping through the portal is precise although the sculpt is inspired by their jump from the past, not to the past. The placement of the activation button is cleverly hidden in the front pillar and the light and sound is powered by a pigtail cord which plugs into an approved light strand. Hallmark would discontinue the pigtail design two years later.

Left: Episode still with Spock and Kirk retuning from the past.
Right: Hallmark’s The City on the Edge of Forever ornament.

2004’s The City on the Edge of Forever ornament was Hallmark’s first scene-centric diorama ornament. Ornaments capturing a famous scene in the Star Trek universe would go on to become an annual offering alongside the Star Trek ships and characters.

Check back next time as we WARP SPEED to #6 in our Top 10 Hallmark Star Trek ornaments of all time.