About Author: Torie Atkinson & Eugene Myers

Website
http://www.theviewscreen.com
Description
TORIE ATKINSON is a NYC-based law student (with a focus on civil rights and economic justice), proofreader, sometime lighting designer, and former Tor.com blog editor/moderator. She watches too many movies and plays too many games but never, ever reads enough books. EUGENE MYERS has published short fiction in a variety of print and online zines as E.C. Myers. He is a graduate of the Clarion West Writers Workshop and a member of the writing group Altered Fluid. When he isn’t watching Star Trek, he reads and writes young adult fiction. His first novel, Fair Coin, is available now from Pyr.

Posts by Torie Atkinson & Eugene Myers

12

Star Trek Re-Watch: “The Alternative Factor”

“The Alternative Factor”
Written by Don Ingalls
Directed by Gerd Oswald

Season 1, Episode 27
Production episode: 1×20
Original air date: March 30, 1967
Star date: 3087.6

Mission summary
The Enterprise is orbiting an “iron-silica” planet: uncharted, lifeless, arid. Just as they are about to complete their survey they get a case of the wooglies—cue shaky-cam and a film overlay of a nebula. Once things return to normal Spock explains that the universe just “blinked” briefly out of existence. But before he can explain (or maybe just because he can’t), he finds that a human is on the surface of the planet, where moments ago there was no one.

Kirk, Spock, and four redshirts beam down to the surface. They come across a tiny little spaceship pod, complete with bulbous dome-shaped cockpit.* But no one’s inside. Suddenly, a crazy man with an even crazier beard appears on top of a cliff face and shouts at them: “You came! Thank the heavens. There’s still time. It’s not too late. We can still stop him. But I, but I, need, need your help.” He then stumbles and falls down the rocky cliff face.

Read the rest of this entry »

1

Star Trek Re-Watch: “The Devil in the Dark”

“The Devil in the Dark”
Written by Gene L. Coon
Directed by Joseph Pevney

Season 1, Episode 25
Production episode: 1×26
Original air date: March 9, 1967
Star date: 3196.1

Mission summary
We don’t begin on the Enterprise but rather in the deep mines of Moria Janus VI, where an unknown “monster” has been taking out guards left and right. A deeply nervous guard, Schmitter, tells us that phaser fire is useless against it—but that the Enterprise is on its way.

“You’ll be all right,” his superior tells him, sealing the man’s fate.

Sure enough, as soon as the other men are out of sight, a huge plasticine creature-thing attacks. By the time the men run back it’s too late.

“Like the rest of them. Burnt to a crisp.”

Read the rest of this entry »

16

Star Trek Re-Watch: “A Taste of Armageddon”

“A Taste of Armageddon”
Teleplay by Robert Hamner and Gene L. Coon
Story by Robert Hamner
Directed by Joseph Pevney

Season 1, Episode 23
Production episode: 1×23
Original air date: February 23, 1967
Star date: 3192.1

Mission summary
The Enterprise is en route to NGC 321, a star cluster hosting a number of inhabited worlds. The Federation (first named here in full as the United Federation of Planets) wants desperately to stop the bloodshed of the past and establish peaceful, diplomatic relations. In pursuit of that goal they’ve sent along Ambassador Robert Fox to make contact with Eminiar VII, the star cluster’s principal planet.

With hailing frequencies open (thanks, Uhura), they finally receive a response from the planet: Code 710. That code means that under no circumstances should the Enterprise approach the planet.

“Disregard that,” says Ambassador Asshat (AA).

Kirk warns him that disregarding that signal could result in interplanetary war, but AA responds that he’s “willing to take that risk.”

Read the rest of this entry »

4

Star Trek Re-Watch: “The Return of the Archons”

“The Return of the Archons”
Teleplay by Boris Sobelman
Story By Gene Roddenberry
Directed by Joseph Pevney

Season 1, Episode 21
Production episode: 1×22
Original air date: February 9, 1967
Star date: 3156.2

Mission summary
We begin with Lt. Sulu and Lt. O’Neil, dressed for the spring production of 1776, fleeing for their lives from ominous hooded figures (it was a modern production). Sulu calls the Enterprise for an emergency beam-out but it’s taking too long, so O’Neil abandons Sulu and runs off on his own. Don’t worry, he’s a professional. The hooded figures have some form of boomstick and one points it at Sulu just as the helmsman beams away. In the transporter room Sulu’s suddenly switched gears entirely, and while he’s dressed for 1776 he’s acting like he’s in Hair. Euphoric and calm, he praises “Landru,” and describes the planet they were just on as “paradise.”

Read the rest of this entry »

3

Star Trek Re-Watch: “Tomorrow is Yesterday”

“Tomorrow is Yesterday”
Written by D. C. Fontana
Directed by Michael O’Herlihy

Season 1, Episode 19
Production episode: 1×21
Original air date: January 26, 1967
Star date: 3113.2

Mission Summary
In the radar room of a U.S. Air Base circa the late 1960s, someone notices a blip: some kind of ship has entered the atmosphere “like it fell out of the sky or something.” It beeps on the radar. A UFO sighting! The captain orders someone to go up and take a closer look. As the camera cuts to the pilots getting ready to intercept and investigate, we see the tiny figure of the Enterprise, in orbit around an ancient Earth.Through a captain’s log we learn that en route to Starbase 9, the Enterprise got sucked into a “black star,” and in order to escape the strong gravitational pull they had to reverse engines at full warp power. The result? A mumblemumble gravitational slingshot effect that sent them tumbling through space-time, “to stop here, wherever we are.”

Read the rest of this entry »

6

Star Trek Re-Watch: “The Squire of Gothos”

“The Squire of Gothos”
Written by Paul Schneider
Directed by Don McDougall

Season 1, Episode 17
Production episode: 1×18
Original air date: January 12, 1967
Star date: 2124.5

Mission summary
The Enterprise is en route to Colony Beta Six to deliver supplies, and must first pass through a “Star Desert”—a barren section of space with no known planets or solar systems. The Star Desert seems to be a misnomer—there’s a planet right there! An iron-silica planet, totally inhospitable to life, and not shown anywhere on the star charts. Kirk doesn’t have the time to stick around and investigate, so he tells Sulu to maneuver around the planet. Sulu does so, then stumbles as if drunk, before vanishing completely. Kirk rushes to Sulu’s station and disappears himself.

Read the rest of this entry »

12

Star Trek Re-Watch: “Shore Leave”

“Shore Leave”
Written by Theodore Sturgeon
Directed by Robert Sparr

Season 1, Episode 15
Production episode: 1×17
Original air date: December 29, 1966
Star date: 3025.3

Mission summary
The Enterprise stumbles upon a lush paradise planet, green and peaceful. Aside from strangely lacking in any animals or other life forms, the planet is reminiscent of Earth. Since the ship’s crew has had a grueling three months, Kirk agrees to survey the place as a possible site for shore leave, which is a little mysterious since there’s absolutely nothing to do down there. I guess there’s no Risa yet. Sulu and McCoy beam down to take some readings, and everything seems to check out…just a little bit too well. “It’s like something out of Alice in Wonderland,” McCoy remarks.

Then, out of nowhere, a huge white rabbit appears, checking its gold watch. “I’m late!” he cries, and runs off. The rabbit is followed by a little girl in blue. McCoy looks absolutely terrified.

Read the rest of this entry »

4

Star Trek Re-Watch: “The Conscience of the King”

“The Conscience of the King”
Written by Barry Trivers
Directed by Gerd Oswald

Season 1, Episode 13
Production episode: 1×12
Original air date: December 8, 1966
Star date: 2817.6

Mission summary
This week on Masterpiece Theater… Shakespeare’s Macbeth! We get a play within a play with this episode as Kirk and a Dr. Thomas Leighton quietly watch Anton Karidian ask, “Will all great Neptune’s ocean wash this blood clean from my hands?” (Answer: Umm, no.) Dr. Leighton is convinced that the man is actually “Kodos the Executioner,” a former governor of the Earth colony Tarsus IV who ordered the execution of 4000 individuals nearly 20 years ago. Leighton, under the pretense of having invented a synthetic food that could end famine on a nearby colony, has invited Kirk to the performance to prove his theory.

Kirk, furious at being duped, assures Leighton that Kodos is dead—his charred body was discovered after the massacre. It was never positively identified, but he’s definitely totally 100% dead…isn’t he? Leighton pleads with Kirk, the two of them being only a handful of people who ever actually saw Kodos, to expose Karidian for who he really is. Kirk firmly tells him this is nonsense and returns to the ship.

Read the rest of this entry »

4

Star Trek Re-Watch: “The Corbomite Maneuver”

“The Corbomite Maneuver”
Written by Jerry Sohl
Directed by Joseph Sargent

Season 1, Episode 109
Production episode: 1×02
Original air date: November 10, 1966
Star date: 1512.2

Mission Summary
The Enterprise, gloriously star-mapping previously uncharted space, is approached by a strange object: a cube. The mysterious cube blocks the Enterprise’s path, and Spock, currently in command, tries to out-maneuver it (to no avail). He alerts Kirk, who had been otherwise gratuitously shirtless for a physical exam, back to the bridge.

Unable to hail it, communicate with it, or dodge it, the Enterprise remains stuck for eighteen hours. Kirk convenes a meeting of the bridge crew but they are unable to determine its nature or intent. Spock guesses that the cube is one of two things: some kind of space buoy, or flypaper.

Read the rest of this entry »

2

Star Trek Re-Watch: “Miri”

“Miri”
Written by Adrian Spies
Directed by Vincent McEveety

Season 1, Episode 8
Production episode: 1×11
Original air date: October 27, 1966
Star date: 2713.5

Mission summary
The Enterprise picks up an S.O.S. and follows it to a planet eerily similar to Earth, as it was in the mid-twentieth century. Kirk, Spock, McCoy, Janice, and two red shirts beam down to the surface. They find the planet is a desolate wasteland (that looks remarkably like a late ’60s Hollywood lot…), uninhabited for at least 300 years. Doctor McCoy bends down to examine a tricycle sitting atop a huge heap of garbage, and a disfigured humanoid creature leaps out at him. The creature claims the tricycle is his, and in the broken thoughts of a child whose toy has been seized, he attacks the landing party. A brief skirmish breaks out until the boy-creature succumbs to seizures and dies. McCoy, somewhat stunned, takes a few readings and realizes: “Its metabolic rate. It’s impossibly high, as if it’s burning itself up, almost as if it aged a century in just the past few minutes.”

Read the rest of this entry »