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|Series :||The Original Series||Rating :|
|Disc No :||3.5||Episode :||79|
|First Aired :||14 Mar 1969||Stardate :||5943.7|
|Director :||Marvin Chomsky||Year :||2269|
|Writers :||Gean Lisette Aroeste||Season :||3|
|Guest Cast :||
|YATI :||Spock tells Zarabeth that he comes from a world "millions of light years away". Our galaxy is no more than a hundred thousand light years from end to end, and Spock has previously demonstrated amazement at the thought of intergalactic travel in anything less than millennia. He can't be millions of light years from home.
When Zarabeth offers Spock meat to eat, she comments that there is "not much else to eat around here," which Spock thinks is perfectly reasonable. One hesitates to speculate on the nature of an alien biology, but it really should be impossible for animals to comprise most of the food. After all, what are all these animals eating? The base of any ecology should be a mass of plant life, with animals comprising significantly less mass. One might speculate that this isn't true on Sarpeidon, or that the plantlife is inedible to the natives but not to the animals, but it seems odd that Spock would so readily agree to the idea.
|Body Count :||Zero|
|Factoid :||Writer Gene Lysette Aroeste was a librarian at UCLA when she wrote her first Star Trek episode.
The interior of the Enterprise is never seen in this episode.
Spock finds himself having greater and greater difficulty in controlling his emotions, apparently reverting to a more primitive state of mind to match his surroundings. Meanwhile Kirk desperately searches for a way to return to the future. He is eventually successful with the help of a local inhabitant who has escaped to this time through the Atavachron, and helps Spock and McCoy to trturn in turn. Together the officers manage to escape the library and depart on the Enterprise just as the supernova blows.
Where the episode falls down most is in the idea of Spock "reverting" due his presence in the past. There's no inherent reason why this should be so - your mental state is a product of the time you live in to an extent, but only in that your culture tends to influence your formative experiences and so produce inherent biases. This episode seems to claim that cave men were cave men not because they hadn't advanced any further yet, but rather because there is something about the year 1 million BC that just made people act like cave men - patent nonsense.
About the only way to excuse it is to claim that the atavachron was able to scan Spock, determine what his people were like some thousands of years ago, and reprogram his brain somehow to make him more like that - possibly a mechanism built in to make people fit in better with the eras they had chosen to escape to. But whilst that's just vaguely within the realms of possibility, you have to wonder why McCoy doesn't spend his time wanting to go out hunting mammoths if this is the case!
It's also rather strange that Sarpeidon's past so closely resembles Earth's past. Look at the time Kirk is in - they have the same clothing, same manner of speaking, similar architecture, even witch trials! I know Trek has dipped the "same as Earth" idea many times, but here they don't even try to offer any excuse.
Sending criminals into the distant past is an interesting idea, I must admit. You have to think that the authorities are very careful about it though - send too many political opponents to one spot and they could found an entire society dedicated to assassinating you when are finally born!
|Copyright Graham Kennedy||Page views : 15,371||Last updated : 12 Mar 2013|