The filk, a form of music formed within the sci-fi and fantasy fandoms, is a long and sort-of honorable tradition. In that spirit, and that of Music Monday, the Bookish Miss presents her all time favorite filk:
Banned From Argo by Leslie Fish.
Yep, that wonderful, crazy, I-have-spawned-so-many-extra-verses-it’s-impossible-to-keep-up-with-them-all, Star Trek parody filk is my favorite.
It was recorded on Solar Sailors in 1977 and is set to the tune of “The Boston Burglar.” The ninth verse originally referenced Klingons, but that was changed to pirates when it was recorded. Why that is, no one seems to know; the song already mentioned Starfleet and Pon Farr (the Vulcan mating drive), so it’s not like changing that word suddenly made the song ostensibly about something else.
In 2003, it won a Pegasus Award for best classic filk song.
All that popularity, however, has had an interesting effect. Banned From Argo, affectionately referred to as BFA, is the only song Leslie Fish refuses to perform.
Here’s a video from YouTube. It’s cheesy (come on, it’s TOS, of course it’s a bit cheesy!) and the visual skips a bit, but it’s the best one I could find. The lyrics are below it. Scroll to the end for a link to download a free mp3 of the song.
When we pulled into Argo Port in need of R&R,
The crew set out investigating every joint and bar.
We had high expectations of their hospitality,
But found too late it wasn’t geared for spacers such as we.
And we’re banned from Argo, everyone.
Banned from Argo, just for having a little fun.
We spent a jolly shore leave there for just three days or four,
But Argo doesn’t want us any more.
The Captain’s tastes were simple, but his methods were complex.
We found him with five partners, each of a different world and sex.
The Shore Police were on the way-we had no second chance.
We beamed him up in the nick of time-and the remnants of his pants.
Our Engineer would yield to none at putting down the brew;
He out-drank seven space marines and a demolition crew.
The Navigator didn’t win, but he out-drank almost all,
And now they’ve got a shuttlecraft on the roof of City Hall.
Our proper, cool First Officer was drugged with something green,
And hauled into an alley, where he suffered things obscene.
He sobered up in Sickbay and he’s none the worse for wear,
Except he’s somehow taught the bridge computer how to swear.
The Head Nurse disappeared awhile in the major Dope Bazaar,
Buying an odd green potion “guaranteed to cause Pon Farr.”
She came home with no uniform and an oddly cheerful heart,
And a painful way of walking with her feet a yard apart.
Our lady of Communications won a shipwide bet,
By getting into the planet’s main communications net.
Now every time someone calls up on an Argo telescreen,
The flesh is there, but the clothes they wear are nowhere to be seen.
Our Doctor loves Humanity; his private life is quiet.
The Shore Police arrested him for inciting whores to riot.
We found him in the city jail, locked on and beamed him free-
Intact except for hickeys and six kinds of VD.
Our Helmsman loves exotic plants; the plants all love him too.
He took some down on leave with him and we wondered what they’d do,
‘Til the planetary governor called and swore upon his life
That a gang of plants entwined his house and then seduced his wife!
A gang of pirates landed, and nobody seemed to care.
They stamped into the nearest bar to announce that they were there.
Half our crew was busy there and invited them to play,
But the pirates only looked at us, and turned and ran away.
Our crew is Starfleet’s finest, and our record is our pride.
And when we play we tend to leave a trail a mile wide.
We’re sorry about the wreckage and the riots and the fuss;
At least we’re sure that planet won’t be quick forgetting us!
Wonder why … ?
Download a free mp3 version here.