Irrational Thought Police, TOS: S2E7 “Catspaw”

When the fog gathers, the witches cackle, and the air grows cold under the full moonlight, our tenuous grasp on rational thought gives way to self-preserving fear.  This is the time of year when the boundaries between the spiritual and physical worlds were said to be at their thinnest.  This is Halloween!  Although the spiritual … More Irrational Thought Police, TOS: S2E7 “Catspaw”

The Day the Earth Stood Sound, TOS: S2E6 “The Doomsday Machine”

Few people have heard of Stanislav Yevgrafovich Petrov, which is a shame, as we all owe him our lives.  A silent and obscure hero, Petrov can claim the honour of single-handedly saving the world from nuclear annihilation, all by humbly opposing authority.  In late September 1983, the Soviet Union detected a nuclear missile launch originating … More The Day the Earth Stood Sound, TOS: S2E6 “The Doomsday Machine”

Eternal Childhood of the Forgotten Mind, TOS: S2E5 “The Apple”

Utopias and dystopias are often explored in science fiction, with speculative storytellers imagining vast possibilities of what the perfect world could look like.  One could argue that the first ‘utopia’ story found in many Western cultures is that of the Garden of Eden.  However, this legend is not concerned with the inner day to day … More Eternal Childhood of the Forgotten Mind, TOS: S2E5 “The Apple”

Contract or Character, TOS: S2E4 “Mirror, Mirror”

A person of strong moral character benefits the society of which he or she is a part, and the society itself was the most influential in fostering the individual’s beneficial traits.  The Enterprise crew faced their own test of character, but emerged championing the superior society.  When transporting through an ion storm, Kirk, McCoy, Scotty, … More Contract or Character, TOS: S2E4 “Mirror, Mirror”

It’s not a Feature it’s a Bug, TOS: S2E3 “The Changeling”

In response to a distress signal, the Enterprise finds no sign of life, and no indication as to where the signal could have originated.  Instead, they find a strange machine, which seems to be confused about its identity.  ‘Nomad’, a space probe launched from Earth in a quest to explore the galaxy, is beamed aboard … More It’s not a Feature it’s a Bug, TOS: S2E3 “The Changeling”

The Invisible Hand of God, TOS: S2E2 “Who Mourns for Adonis?”

In a seemingly empty part of space, the Enterprise is suddenly held hostage by a giant hand.  Held at its mercy, nothing seems to break Kirk’s team free from this oddly-shaped force field.  They are soon introduced to their captor, a god-like being called Apollo, who exerts complete control over the ship and crew.  In … More The Invisible Hand of God, TOS: S2E2 “Who Mourns for Adonis?”

Traditional Liberation, TOS: S2E1 “Amok Time”

When Spock experiences the pon farr, a period of intense physical and psychological stress preceding Vulcan mating, he must journey back to his planet to marry his fiancé or he will die. The accompanying ceremony is elaborate, culturally significant, and ancient. The ritual also allows Spock’s potential mate to challenge the offer and choose another husband. In this rare … More Traditional Liberation, TOS: S2E1 “Amok Time”

Ultra-Specific Adaptation, TOS: S1E29 “Operation — Annihilate!”

The Enterprise investigates the strange case concerning a series of planets whose inhabitants seem to be overcome by mass insanity.  A nearby ship flies straight into the sun, despite everything the Enterprise crew does to help it.  After a few more peculiar communications, the trail leads to the planet Deneva, where Captain Kirk’s brother is … More Ultra-Specific Adaptation, TOS: S1E29 “Operation — Annihilate!”

Timely Treatment, TOS: S1E28 “The City on the Edge of Forever”

What more can be said about one of the greatest episodes of Star Trek ever written?  “The City on the Edge of Forever” is praised by critics and fans for its perfect combination of emotional depth and inspirational SciFi storytelling.  After accidentally injecting himself with an overdose of cordrazine, a delirious Dr. McCoy transports himself … More Timely Treatment, TOS: S1E28 “The City on the Edge of Forever”

Antimatter Containment, TOS: S1E27 “The Alternative Factor”

In this somewhat underwhelming episode of The Original Series, the Enterprise crew encounters a strange man named Lazarus, who seems to blink into existence.  After some on-board shenanigans…a phantom dilithium thief, injuries on the man’s face that disappear and reappear… the crew learns that Lazarus has a counterpart in another dimension.  This ‘anti-matter’ dimension is … More Antimatter Containment, TOS: S1E27 “The Alternative Factor”