It's Christmas in August! I stopped by Hallmark recently and I was surprised to see this year's Christmas ornaments on the shelf, thereby confirming the fact that retailers want the Christmas season to start ever-sooner. Oh well, at least I get to appreciate the new Enterprise D ornament a few months early. The first ornamental version of this Enterprise hit in 1993... but has ornament-making technology progressed in the past 20 years? Let's take a look!
Enterprise D (Hallmark, 1993)
The first Enterprise D has a great sculpt. I always wished there more paint apps to indicate the aztecing, phaser strips, and all the other little details on the hull. The tree wiring is awkward, too. Still, it's a fantastic-looking ship that can still hold its own on the Christmas tree against more recent ships. For the time, it was one of the coolest Enterprises around... even with the year printed on the back of the saucer.
Enterprise D (Hallmark, 2012)
The new Enterprise is more of a stand-alone product that you can display year-round. It's propped up on a stand so that you don't need some kind of ornament rig for display. That said, it's awkward to put on the tree because the stand doesn't appear to be removable.
Paint apps have certainly improved for this Enterprise. Although there's still no aztecing, you can see that the phaser strips, shuttlebays, and transporter emitters are painted.
The sculpt is much more detailed. At first glance the Enterprises look remarkably similar, but a close comparison reveals that the 2012 version has a sharper sculpt with clearer details.
Batteries inserted into the base replace the tree wiring as the energy source. (Alas, no dilithium crystals yet.) There are no lights (tragically), but the Enterprise does include fun sound effects: you hear the opening lines of TNG's intro when you press a button on the base (observe the extra-dorky demo below). Ensign, set course for the Christmas tree: maximum warp!