TOS Re-Watch Archive

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Star Trek Re-Watch: “Friday’s Child”

“Friday’s Child”
Written by D.C. Fontana
Directed by Joseph Pevney

Season 2, Episode 11
Production episode: 2×03
Original air date: December 1, 1967
Star date: 3497.2
Mission summary

The Enterprise arrives at Capella IV to negotiate for mining rights to a rare mineral called topaline, which is essential to colonial life-support systems. Doctor McCoy has spent some time on the planet, so he briefs the senior crew on the Capellan culture: they are a large, warlike people who believe “only the strong should survive” and have a lot of taboos. Sound like anyone we know? Worried about showing force by bringing an armed security team, Kirk, Spock, and McCoy beam down with a lone red shirt, and a “young and inexperienced” one at that. Grant is also excitable; when they discover a Klingon hanging out on the planet, he draws his phaser and is instantly killed by a kligat, a knife the Capellans can throw up to a hundred yards. Too bad Kirk failed to warn him that Klingons were in the area…

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1

Star Trek Re-Watch: “Journey to Babel”

“Journey to Babel”
Written by D.C. Fontana
Directed by Joseph Pevney

Season 2, Episode 10
Production episode: 2×15
Original air date: November 17, 1967
Star date: 3842.3

Mission Summary:
Captain Kirk and Dr. McCoy are putting the finishing touches on their dress uniforms as the U.S.S. Enterprise arrives at Vulcan to pick up a delegation of ambassadors. These delegates from across the Federation are headed for a neutral planet code-named “Babel.” The planet Coridan, a small, poorly defended world rich in dilithium, has petitioned the Federation for admission, and a conference is being held to discuss their application. Tensions are already startlingly high when the Vulcan party comes aboard, lead by Ambassador Sarek, the Vulcan ambassador to Earth, joined by his human wife Amanda. Spock, in a charming moment, tries to teach Dr. McCoy how to do the proper salute but McCoy’s attempts are utter failures.

Sarek greets Captain Kirk and Dr. McCoy warmly (for a Vulcan…), but turns a cold shoulder to Spock. The captain is a little perplexed but shrugs it off and offers to have Mr. Spock take him for a tour of the ship. The ambassador immediately declines the offer. Awkwardly, Kirk invites Mr. Spock to visit his parents while they are in orbit around Vulcan.

SPOCK: Captain, Ambassador Sarek and his wife are my parents.

Ouch, awkward! Too bad Kirk didn’t actually read Mr. Spock’s personnel file.

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Star Trek Re-Watch: “Metamorphosis”

“Metamorphosis”
Written by Gene L. Coon
Directed by Ralph Senensky

Season 2, Episode 9
Production episode:
Original air date: November 10, 1967
Star date: 3219.8

Mission summary

Kirk, Spock, and McCoy are escorting Assistant Federation Commissioner Nancy Hedford in the shuttlecraft Galileo to the Enterprise for emergency medical care. In the middle of delicate negotiations on Epsilon Canaris III, she contracted Sakuro’s disease, a rare illness that is fatal if left untreated. She’s anxious to get back to prevent a war, but when they’re only four hours away from rendezvous with the ship, scanners pick up a weird cloud in space blocking their way. Hedford whines about the situation, but that has no effect. The cloud sucks the shuttle in and whisks them off course.

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Star Trek Re-Watch: “I, Mudd”

“I, Mudd”
Written by Stephen Kandel
Directed by Marc Daniels

Season 2, Episode 9
Production episode: 2×12
Original air date: November 3, 1967
Star date: 4513.3

Mission Summary:
A new crewmember, Norman, has come aboard the Enterprise, and he stiffly greets Doctor McCoy and Spock in the hallway. Bones has a bad feeling about him—and since he’s the emotional core of the show, so do we.

MCCOY: There’s something wrong about a man who never smiles, whose conversation never varies from the routine of the job, and who won’t talk about his background.
SPOCK: I see.
MCCOY: Spock, I mean that it’s odd for a non-Vulcan. The ears make all the difference.

Norman makes his way to Auxiliary Control, where he silently karate-chops the crewman there and inputs a new course direction. Sulu can’t override it, and Security can’t seem to find Norman, which is shocking considering he’s taller than even Nimoy and looks like a giant among elves. Norman makes his way to Engineering next, knocking out poor Mr. Scott and reconfiguring the matter-antimatter pods into a trigger relay (yada yada SCIENCE!) that will destroy the ship if they try and override it. He then heads to the bridge, where an angry Kirk demands to know who he is and where they’re now inexorably headed.

Norman says in stilted pauses that “we” require the Enterprise, and reveals a circuit panel on his abdomen, complete with blinking lights: he’s an android! He then crosses his arms and turns himself off for the duration of the flight.

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2

Star Trek Re-Watch: “Catspaw”

“Catspaw”
Written by Robert Bloch
Directed by Joseph Pevney

Season 2, Episode 7
Production episode: 2×01
Original air date: October 27, 1967
Star date: 3018.2

Mission summary

Kirk is worried because the landing party surveying planet Kyris VII missed their scheduled check-in. Neither Scotty nor Sulu respond on communicators, but finally crewman Jackson contacts the ship with a request for transport—alone. He ignores Kirk’s questions about the people he really cares about, so they beam Jackson up. As soon as he materializes on the transporter pad he falls over, dead. Another transporter accident? No, because a cheesy voice trying to be scary emanates from Jackson’s mouth:

Captain Kirk, can you hear me? There is a curse on your ship. Leave this place or you will all die.

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Star Trek Re-Watch: “The Doomsday Machine”

“The Doomsday Machine”
Written by Norman Spinrad
Directed by Marc Daniels

Season 2, Episode 6
Production episode: 2×06
Original air date: October 20, 1967
Star date: 4202.9

Mission Summary:
When the Enterprise receives a garbled distress signal (only the word “Constellation” is intelligible), they approach system L-370 to discover that all seven planets in the solar system have been destroyed—there is “nothing left but rubble and asteroids.” They continue to system L-374, which has fallen to a similar fate. Suddenly they pick up a ship’s disaster beacon, and find the U.S.S. Constellation drifting in space. It is heavily damaged, presumably by the same thing that destroyed the solar systems in this sector. Kirk, in his green command sarong, Mr. Scott, Dr. McCoy, Lt. Washburn, and two others beam to the ship to investigate.

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Star Trek Re-Watch: “The Apple”

“The Apple”
Written by Max Ehrlich
Directed by Joseph Pevney

Season 2, Episode 5
Production episode: 2×09
Original air date: October 13, 1967
Star date: 3715.3

Mission summary

A survey team consisting of Kirk, Spock, McCoy, Chekov, Yeoman Landon, and more redshirts than usual beams down to the surface of Gamma Trianguli VI. There have been reports of strange sensor readings from the planet, and the Enterprise has orders to investigate and establish contact with the inhabitants. Everyone is immediately impressed by the lush vegetation; apparently the entire planet is just as fertile, with an average temperature of seventy-six degrees, which reminds McCoy of the Garden of Eden. The group is about to head for a nearby village when one of the security officer notices a flower behaving oddly. It turns and nails him right in the chest with poisonous thorns. So long, Hendorff.

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Star Trek Re-Watch: “Mirror, Mirror”

“Mirror, Mirror”
Written by Jerome Bixby
Directed by Marc Daniels

Season 2, Episode 4
Production episode: 2×10
Original air date: September 29, 1967
Star date: Unknown (dun dun dun)

Mission summary
Captain Kirk, Mr. Scott, Dr. McCoy, and Uhura are on the homeworld of the Halkans, attempting to negotiate an agreement to mine dilithium from the planet’s surface. The Halkans, however, are a race that believes in total and absolute peace, and their leader Tharn refuses to grant Starfleet these rights; while the Federation is currently benevolent, “the future is always in question.” Disappointed but hopeful for a change of heart, Kirk asks Spock to beam up the landing party.

A powerful magnetic storm disrupts their transportation, however, and their forms flicker in and out of the transporter room. The Enterprise reverses in orbit, flashing, and then the landing party finally materializes. But something is rotten in the state of Denmark…

They appear and are wearing modified uniforms, with gold sashes around their waists. Uhura’s midriff is bare. Spock and the other transporter room officers greet the Captain with a quasi-Heil Hitler salute.

But worst of all…Spock has a beard.

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Star Trek Re-Watch: “The Changeling”

“The Changeling”
Written by John Meredyth Lucas
Directed by Marc Daniels

Season 2, Episode 3
Production episode: 2×04
Original air date: September 29, 1967
Star date: 3451.9

Mission summary
The Enterprise responds to a distress signal in the Malurian system, but when they arrive it’s already too late—the entire race, some four billion people, have mysteriously disappeared. The cause of their total destruction is less mysterious when an unknown enemy attacks the ship with energy bolts traveling at warp 15, each with the strength of ninety photon torpedoes. Shields hold up under three such attacks while they pinpoint the source and fire a photon torpedo at it, but it’s easily absorbed by their assailant. The fourth energy blast destroys their shields and they finally decide to attempt contact. Spock also determines that the enemy vessel is tiny: “Weight, five hundred kilograms. Shape, roughly cylindrical. Length, a fraction over one meter.”

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Star Trek Re-Watch: “Who Mourns for Adonais?”

“Who Mourns for Adonais?”
Written by Gilbert Ralston
Directed by Marc Daniels

Season 2, Episode 2
Production episode: 2×04
Original air date: September 22, 1967
Star date: 3468.1

Mission summary
The Enterprise is completing a survey mission of Pollux IV, an M-class planet with a “strange lack of intelligent life.” Spock describes it as “quite ordinary,” which should be your first clue that it’s probably a death trap. The second clue comes when the viewscreen, which previously displayed a beautiful image of the blue planet, now shows the image of a giant green hand.

CHEKOV: Am I seeing things?
SULU: Not unless I am, too. Captain, that thing’s a giant hand!

But wait, is it?

KIRK: What is it, Mr. Spock? Is it a hand?

Guys, it’s a hand. Really. This isn’t so hard.

UHURA: It’s almost as if it means to grab us!

Maybe it just wants to…lend a hand?

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