Friday, 7 February 2014

TOS - 3.1 - Spock's Brain


Star Trek - Spock's Brain
Not tonight my dear, I have a headache.
The crew members are stunned - not by a phaser with stun setting - but by a suddenly appearance of a female alien, who's dressed in mini-skirt with a friendly smile. Well, the male Enterprise crew members are too stun by this grinning female alien on the bridge that they have forgotten what their mothers (of the 1960s) have taught them - don't trust any beautiful woman, especially an exotic one from another place (or space for that matter).

The next thing you know, she stuns everyone on the Enterprise. This time, it's a physical stun - the same effect as produced by a phaser set on stun, but only much more widespread. You will be knocked out, but you will regain consciousness sometime later (nobody really defines how long is 'sometimes').

The next thing you know, she goes for Spock's brain. No hello, no handshake, just wham bam and take your brain. Thank you m'am.

So the next logical thing to do - I think Spock agrees - is to put a gadget on his scalp and turns him into a walking zombie in search of his brains. So as a walking zombie with a hollow head, he has less facial expression than usual. Just slightly less. Too close to call though.

I won't tell you the rest of the story as I don't want to spoil. Well, what am I talking about? You're supposed to watch the show already before reading this 'review'. This is how my reviews are supposed to serve - post-mortem analysis.

Yes, after Season 1, Spock has the privilege of playing the lead roles in the 1st episodes of Seasons 2 and 3, even if it doesn't paint the most flattering picture of Mr. Spock.

In episode 2.1, his Vulcan sexual 'period' or ponfarr is revealed to us (shame on you Spock). And in this episode 3.1, Spock's most valuable asset - his logical brain - is stolen. I don't know how the female alien could so quickly identifies Spock as the crew member who has the most desirable brains. Perhaps she mistakes his pointy ears for putting his hands up.

So let me go back to talk about what I supposed to talk about - where the idea for this episode comes from? The people involved were quite embarrassed by this. It's one thing to be inspired by another classics such as H.G. Wells' The Time Machine; this happened in pilot episode 1 "The Cage". It's another matter when you copied your own episode or using the same idea again. This becomes repetitive.

Both pilot episode 1 "The Cage" and this episode clearly comes from the same source - H.G. Wells' The Time Machine. Except in this episode, this copying is even more obvious. The Eymorgs who lives underground and enslaves the Morgs who lives above ground clearly parallel the Morlocks and Eloi in H.G. Wells' The Time Machine. The only twist or difference - and it's too small to be considered original - is that the Eymorgs are just as much as simpletons as the Morgs. The Eymorgs were once highly intelligent, but their brains atrophied due to prolonged disuse, which in turns because of total reliance of the machine.