Utterly Star Trek Review

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Star Trek 3.6 (Spectre of the Gun)

Ron Soble (Wyatt Earp)
Bonnie Beecher (Sylvia)
Charles Maxwell (Virgil Earp)
Rex Holman (Morgan Earp)
Sam Gilman(Doc Holliday)
Charles Seel (Ed)
Bill Zuckert (Johnny Behan)
Abraham Sofaer(voice of Melkotian)

Writer: Gene L. Coon

Star Trek visits the Gunfight at the OK Corral.  Badly.

Kirk ignores a warning to keep away from a planet and annoys the aliens in control, so the five people end up in being told they will be executed by something out of Kirks mind.  Then suddenly they are in the OK Corral, and everybody thinks they are the Clantons – the people that lost the famous gunfight.

There is something interesting about the design of this episode.  Instead of filming on a back lot, the whole thing is shot on a soundstage – but there are bits missing.  For example, they go into a bar, and the doors are there, and the tables, and drinks, but no walls – you can see outside.  There is even a picture just hanging in the air, appearing not to be supported by anything.  And instead of having blue sky and clouds, the sky is just red.  It doesn’t look real, but then it’s not meant to.  It is unique – perhaps it was just a cost saving thing, but it does give the episode a unique feel – the place just feels empty, even though there are plenty of characters running around.

Checkovs behaviour in this episode is annoying.  He falls for this woman in the perfect knowledge that she doesn’t exist, that she is all part of the elaborate execution scenario that the Melkotians have set up for them.  It does get him shot and killed, but he doesn’t really die as he is alive again by the end of the episode.

The laws of physics do not seem to apply here, when Spock creates a grenade that releases a gas that should incapacitate, it doesn’t work.

It is an interesting tale, but it doesn’t really work.  It is actually very slow to watch and rather boring.  And the ending is rubbish – since the laws of physics do not apply, if you believe that the bullets are not real they cannot kill you.  Since the only person who is certain of this fact is Spock, he melds with them all – and I may be wrong, but this is the first time we hear “my mind to your mind, my thoughts to your thoughts” when the meld is conducted.

So they all survive, the only bit I like is when Earp and crew shoot at them, and the bullets pass through them and smash the woodwork behind them.

And in the end it all turned out to be a test, and because Kirk didn’t kill, even when provoked by the (apparent) death of one of his own, the aliens then welcome them to their planet.  Not one of the best.

Crew Deaths: 0
Total Crew Deaths So Far: 45
Score: 4/10


May 1, 2008 - Posted by | historical characters, mind meld |

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