More than five decades ago, six-year-old Dennis Green was channel-surfing (three channels, didn’t take very long), when he landed on KMTV, the Omaha NBC affiliate, just in time to see this creature fill the TV screen, all twelve inches of it.
Scared the shit out of me.
Years later, like all young geeks of the era, I started watching Star Trek reruns after school, and saw the creature that had given me a week’s worth of nightmares again, the famous Salt Vampire from the fifth Star Trek episode filmed, “The Man Trap.” Or the sixth, depending on how you want to count “The Cage.”
Still later, I learned that the network suits chose this episode as the Star Trek premiere.
I can’t say with 100% certainty that what I saw wasn’t a rerun. I do remember that it was very, very late at night, by six-year-old standards, perhaps eight o’clock. And a school night. Wikipedia tells me the premiere episode aired from 7:30-8:30pm Central Time that Thursday, which tracks. Therefore, I choose to believe that I watched the Star Trek premiere on September 8, 1966.
At least thirty seconds or so of it.