Monday, October 24, 2022

Review of "Where No Man Has Gone Before," Star Trek original series

 Review of

Where No Man Has Gone Before, Star Trek original series

Five out of five stars

Viewed from the context of the times, an extraordinary episode

This episode, the second pilot shot for the proposed Star Trek series, cleans up many of the problems of the original pilot and sets down the high standards for the show. William Shatner was clearly an improvement over Jeffrey Hunter as the captain of the Enterprise and eliminating most of the emotion from Mr. Spock was a stroke of genius. Gary Lockwood and Sally Kellerman play their roles of modified humans with extreme ESP powers to near perfection.

 The Enterprise encounters a buoy from the missing ship U. S. S. Valiant and it contains some rather odd data. After encountering an energy barrier, the crew suddenly becomes frantic over information about E. S. P. and is destroyed. The Enterprise also encounters the energy barrier and the Lockwood and Kellerman characters (Gary Mitchell and Elizabeth Dehner) turn into people of extraordinary abilities, although it takes Dehner longer.

Mitchell rapidly achieves Godlike powers and Kirk tries to maroon him on a remote planet. Mitchell learns of the plot and with Dehner's help, Kirk has a fight to the death with Mitchell and kills him.

 We see here the fundamental position that a captain of a starship exploring the unknown may encounter. Gary Mitchell and James Kirk are clearly friends of long standing, yet Kirk must kill his friend in order to protect his ship, crew and probably the rest of humanity. It is not an easy thing to live with, yet it does summarize the dynamic energy and responsibility of a starship commander.

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