“The Return of the Archons” Remastered Screenshots and Video | TrekMovie.com
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“The Return of the Archons” Remastered Screenshots and Video December 8, 2007

by Anthony Pascale , Filed under: TOS-R Screenshots/Video , trackback



Summary: Good episode, but almost nothing to do for CBS-D
This weekend’s TOS-R episode, "The Return of the Archons", is one of the better Original Series episodes with a high concept story of a planet full of mindless drones controlled by a computer seeking perfection decades before the Borg were even conceived. This is primarily a ‘planet episode’ with just a tiny smattering of Enterprise in orbit shots. Even though they had little to work with, CBS-D did mix up the angles of those orbital shots a bit, including a nice close-up fly-by.

NOTE: Remastered video and images below taken from the Standard Definition DVD side of the new Star Trek Season One box set.

SFX Video


SFX Screenshots

Remastered & Original








I am Landru

No I am Landru

Pull my finger

Peace man!


Order TOS-R Season One Box from Amazon – now $132.95

Star Trek: The Original Series – The Complete First Season [HD DVD] — $132.95


1. DarthDogg - December 9, 2007

The close up shot was awsome, especialy the way it was used to reveal the city on the planet being visable from orbit. Great work. First!!!

2. Chain of Command - December 9, 2007


3. The Vulcanista - December 9, 2007

I liked that Google-Earth feature too!

Just as a part of the CGI wishlist, I would like to have seen people moving about in the windows of the close-up flyby at the beginning of the episode.

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

4. Anonymous Gasbag - December 9, 2007

Festivus for the rest of us!

Sorry, had to.

5. James Heaney - December 9, 2007

OP: “‘The Return of the Archons,’ one of the better Original Series episodes…”

You know, maybe this was the syndication cut that ruined it for me, but -really-? This is one of the few TOS episodes I’d never seen (yes, heresy, I haven’t seen them all, feel free to burn me, but I’m almost afraid to see ‘The Ultimate Computer’ and ‘Metamorphosis’ because, once those are done, there’s no more Original Star Trek for me. Ever! Now, back to ‘Archons':). and, like I said, it’s possible that it was the cuts for syndication that got me, but this episode came across as bordering on insane. When we reached the end, my entire family–Trekkies all–were already chuckling at the stupidity and absurd ease of the defeat of Landru. We burst out laughing when Kirk changed instantly from grim to cheery with, “Well, you’re on your own now! I hope you’re up to it!” and had to pause and rewind to hear the rest of the line–which, again, made us burst out laughing, with both my sisters on the floor. (That line is, “You can get rid of those robes… If I were you, I’d start looking for another job.”) And then, just to top it off, there’s that wonderful moment when we have the shot of the bridge, where Scotty says, “Mr. Sulu’s back on his feet” or whatever, and Sulu makes the most hilarious gesture at the camera with his hands, like he’s the presenter of some children’s television show saying “I, Mr. Sulu, am back! Hooray! Bring out the dancing bears!” to all the kids. We rewatched the last two minutes five times before we began to stop laughing. It was like the writer had decided to call it a day after killing Landru, and the producers were just telling everyone to ad lib it.

So, to say it mildly, I found this episode extremely difficult to take seriously. What’s more–and I’m -sure- this is just the syndication–the purpose of Red Hour was never explained (which drove my youngest sister nuts).

Very silly hour, well worth the laugh–and there are some excellent moments in it, as well–but I would find it terribly embarrassing if this were the episode my non-Trekkie friends happened to see on late-night TV. The main contribution of the episode to the world is that FiveMinute.net’s parody of the show led to the creation of the increasingly famous Kirk line, “I’m sorry; I can’t hear you over the sound of how awesome I am.”

6. James Heaney - December 9, 2007

P.S. Oh, but the CGI close-up was awesome. As were the usual vanity shots of the Big E. Great job to CBS this week.

7. trektacular - December 9, 2007

Classic Trek just seems so much more dumb ever since its been remastered. I think cleaning up the prints was a big mistake.

8. Bramblett - December 9, 2007

3. – At the beginning of ‘Court Martial’ they put a couple of visible crew members in those windows. One was looking out into space and the other was a redshirt walking by.

9. TrekMadeMeWonder - December 9, 2007

Where is the Enterprise Incident?

10. Jim Smith - December 9, 2007

5# Dude, you should totally see The Ultimate Computer, it’s one of Trek’s masterpieces. That said, maybe wait for the CGI-ed up version and watch it for the first time in its pimped up form? There are some space battles that would look outstanding in digital form.

11. Thomas Riker - December 9, 2007

no phasers shots fixed then? I seem to remember the phasers looking really bad in this episode.

12. CanuckLou - December 9, 2007

Like others have mentioned this episode freaked me out as a kid with the robes and Landru. Later and now its one of the flattest episodes of the series. No real character drama.

13. New Horizon - December 9, 2007

Yeah, nice looking closeup shot of the ship. Well planned.

14. FredCFO - December 9, 2007

They should have tried to remaster the Landru computer room. It looked outdated — big boxes with colored lights.

The opening to Act I was awesome.

The story was classic TOS (out “logicking” a computer — an idea so good it was repeated in “the Changeling”, “I, Mudd” and “the Ultimate Computer”)

15. star trackie - December 9, 2007

First season greatness. From the imaginative other-worldliness of the society and creepy music to the period costumes and winderfuyl lighting. Why don’t they take the time to light sets anymore for dramatic flare? The spin-off Treks were always so evenly lit in their attempts to look “real” that it was totally uninteresting, visually.

The effects were superb, and that reveal of the city below was a real treat and on the HD DVD, it’s absolutely stunning.

16. Ali - December 9, 2007

Reminded me of how good the Trek fanfares over the Captain’s Log could be. Who did the music for this one?

17. CmdrR - December 9, 2007

One of Trek’s best.

18. navamske - December 9, 2007

If Landru met Seven of Nine: “You are not of the… Whoa! You ARE of the body! Hubba hubba! Isn’t it about time for Festival?”

19. Gary Seven - December 9, 2007

Re:#5 James Heaney—

The function of “Festival” was to allow the expression of pent-up passions that were usually blocked while Landru was controlling the minds of the populace in order to promote “harmony.” Given the superior intellect you and your companions clearly have in seeing how “dumb” this episode is, (resulting in your laughter) I am surprised the meaning of “Festival” escaped you.

(Should I put in the phrase “I’m laughing at the superior intellect” here? No, that would be too belligerent even if appropriate).

In my opinion this is one of the very best Trek episodes. It is a great allegory for the dangers of any overbearing system on individuality, be it the potential abuses of organized religion, authoritarian political systems (i.e., Communism, etc.) and the like.

20. J. Kirk - December 9, 2007

I can not believe they didn’t change the shot of the “Landru” computer at the end of the show…. OMG… Talk about one of the fakest looking shots of the show…..

21. Picard for President - December 9, 2007


MTV, Playstations, sugar comas and Ritalin really work great, lol!

22. IceNine - December 9, 2007

Landru Jackson, 7th President of Festivus.

In any case I must agree with “19. Gary Seven – December 9, 2007,” sociolgilcally, the more repressive the system the greater the backlash. Look at the Victorian world of the late 19th century.

The trick it so find balance between the Standard Culture and the Counter Culture.

23. Picard for President - December 9, 2007


Right on man. What are we gonna do when these ADD Babies are supposed to be in charge of the country in a few decades?

It take more than snarkines to earn a living and raise a family.

24. Dan - December 9, 2007

Here in Vegas, we will Finally be able to watch the Re-mastered Trek in High-Def starting this week with the CW now carried in HD. Hurraahhhh!!!!

25. Dr. Image - December 9, 2007

That opening shot and close-up flyby were possibly the first times where the CGI E really looked like a model, rather, like it was really there!
You could see the red doors inside the windows. My HD disc set should be here tomorrow. Yes!

26. T Negative - December 9, 2007

The phasers were not fixed in this episode. With so little for CBS to do in this particular outing, why wasn’t this done??

I absolutely love that shot of the Big E viewing it head on when the title comes up. That is the best looking shot of her that CBS has done so far. Further, it shows how good the ship can look when spruced up and in HD. besides the deflector dish I don’t think it looks dated at all.

Matt Jeffries was a brilliant man that was ahead of his time.

27. Absoroka - December 9, 2007

Are you not of the body?

28. Imrahil - December 9, 2007


29. Mazzer - December 9, 2007

Just watched this remastered episode on DVD (Netflix rental). The “full” episode doesn’t make any more sense of the story than the broadcast version (for whatever difference there might be). One of the more tedious and cliche-ridden episodes.

Still, I could sit and watch the new CGI space scenes all day. It’s only after now seeing a few of these episodes on DVD that I realised what a small part (in duration) of the overall show these new shots make up. But they are beautiful!

30. NitroTab - December 9, 2007

#18. navamske – December 9, 2007

“If Landru met Seven of Nine: “You are not of the… Whoa! You ARE of the body! Hubba hubba! Isn’t it about time for Festival?””


31. Plum - December 9, 2007

Wonderful episode, has all the classic Trek tropes. The beginning, with Sulu and soon-to-be-dead-ensign running for their lives, is one of Trek’s most exciting teasers. How can you not love such true Trek – Kirk kills the machine God/Commies with nothing but reason!

Regarding how many found the ending dated or cheezy… well, sheesh, the show is over 40 years old man.

32. OR Coast Trekkie - December 9, 2007

Not a horrible episode, but not a great one either. The acting seems quite “community theatre-ish.”

For the good effects: Awesome space shot of the town. That was really cool. See what can be done if you give it a modern twist?

The phasers weren’t fixed, which was a disappointment. There were some good opportunities to make a new “wide beam” and vaporization of rock. Also, why were heat rays not added, or at least something given to show tha Enterprise was under attack?

Another thing: Was anyone else bothered by the end sequence of effects. The viewscreen to ship pass to viewscreen to ship pass again seemed really choppy on tv; almost as though they either couldn’t decide what to use or that someone changed their mind and tried to change it, but got the “blue screen of death” and it made a glitch that they dind’t have time to fix. Also, they clearly leave the sight of the planet, only to have the planet be close in the next shot. Come on guys, you gotta be on top of these things…

33. eagle219406 - December 9, 2007

THis episode was okay and the effects were pretty good. One thing that confused me though was that when they “absorbed” McCoy and the other guy and tried to do it to SPock and Kirk, they had to put them in this big machine. But to do it to Sulu, all they had to do was touch him with the staffs. Does that make any sense to anybody? I think that they did change the Phasers but only subtly.

34. jonboc - December 9, 2007

#26 “The phasers were not fixed in this episode. With so little for CBS to do in this particular outing, why wasn’t this done?? ”

Honestly, I didn’t notice anything about the phasers that was broke and needed fixing. A blue beam of light is a blue beam of light, not just a whole lot you can do there. . The hand phaser FX looked just fine to me.

35. Toonloon - December 9, 2007

I watched this on HD at 1080i and i noticed the colour “gradiants” on the hull during the flyby. I was quite startled by this obvious digital “paint”.

36. James Heaney - December 9, 2007

#19 (and #23 to a lesser extent): I surmised the function of the Festival from the episode, and later had it confirmed by a check of the ST Encyclopedia. Nonethless, I was waiting for explanation and how it would be involved in the climax for the entire episode. It is… dumb… not to have it explained at any point. They set it up as a mysterious mystery thing and then never paid it off. And, I looked up the transcript, and, you know what? It -wasn’t- the syndication cut that killed it. They just didn’t include an explanation of it in the script. The way it was presented, that’s plain bad writing, even though I *did* understand it. Combine that with the absurd ending (by far the worst example of Kirk beating a computer I’ve ever seen–I mean, compare to a great show like “The Changelling”) and you have yourself an episode that pales in comparison to the other February ’67 episodes (“Space Seed”, “Court Martial”, and “A Taste of Armageddon”.)

OTOH, the Khan quote is entirely acceptable. I just bought a Christmas ornament that says that.

Now, you give me an episode like “A Taste of Armageddon” or even “Patterns of Force” and I’ll give you an episode with a better sense of itself and its theme. “Archons” missed the mark, and missed it badly–even sloppily. That’s got nothing to do with my ADD or lack thereof; #23’s ad hominem criticism, however, might charitiably be due to a poor education.


37. James Heaney - December 9, 2007

And to #31: Yes, the show’s forty years old. But the rest of TOS proves that the writing of forty years ago was better than this.

Again, I’m not trying to hate on this show. But I have been hated on for the amusement I took out of it, and honor demands that I respond!

38. Nelson - December 9, 2007

One minor bit of trivia about this episode is the actor who played Lindstrom was also in an episode of Space: 1999 titled: The Immunity Syndrone. How’s that for coincidence. I thought I recognized him!

Must be the only actor or one of a few to appear in both shows or a Trek spin-off Well, Nick Tate was in TNG and DS9, nevermind.

39. Greg Stamper - December 9, 2007

The Clock “Bongs” of the Red Hour have been replaced.
The original had a lot of background noise associated with them.

40. Michael Hall - December 9, 2007

For my money, and speaking as a long-time TOS fan, James, you’re right on the money on this show. Whatever value “Archons” may have as an allegory about repressed individualism, and whatever creepy production values were brought to the story (and I’ll gladly second the praise CBS-D has received on the orbital shots), the script itself is an uninspired mishmash of what came to be some of Trek’s worst cliches.

TOS purists tend to deride modern Trek for many reasons, and some of them are certainly justified. But at least captains Picard, Janeway et al didn’t routinely argue computers into popping their fuses.

41. Cranston - December 9, 2007

I’ve always enjoyed this one. Yes, the defeat of Landru is horribly easy (but that’s just something )we have to accept about computers in the Trek universe), but the atmosphere is suitably creepy and I like the overall vibe.

One thing that was pointed out recently to me by my wife — a TNG fan from way back, but who had never seen much/any TOS — is how Landru’s henchmen/enforcers/robed guys really come off as a sort of proto-Borg. All that “You will be absorbed.” and “Your individuality will merge into the unity of good” and all.

42. John in Canada, eh? - December 9, 2007

This one’s never been my favourite episode, duer perhaps to the directing, not the writing. Glad to see others have enjoyed it, though.

One of the people who apparently enjoyed this episode was big Trek fan Ben Stiller — he named his production company “Red Hour” in its honour.

43. j - December 9, 2007

Another pale, washed-out planet.

44. Andy Patterson - December 9, 2007


I’ve always loved it.

Now that you’re about to see it all the way through remember….

“You will experience…the ab-solute GOOD.”

Remember this being on for some random reason about 9:00 at night one evening. On a Saturday. My mother had brought home hamburgers from McEplen’s Drive-a-teria which made square hamburgers and put mayonnaise on every damn one of them. I always pleaded with her to get them to put mustard on them instead. For some reason that was too hard.

At any rate, this episode was on out of the blue that night. It was such a treat and made up for the fact that I had to eat a mayonnaisey square hamburger.

45. Gary Seven - December 9, 2007

#44- Andy Patterson:
That is one of the most touching, emotionally-gut wrenching stories ever told. May we discuss movie rights?

46. MichaelJohn - December 9, 2007

Great opening sequence! (Though I think I’ve seen all these angles and shots of the Enterprise before.)

This was an excellent episode to start with, and the newly remastered Enterprise is just extra icing on the cake.

Mike :o

47. Jethro Kirk - December 9, 2007

My local affiliate (WUXP) instead of showing “Return of the Archons” tonight as scheduled, just broadcasted a full sixty minutes of their station logo (I still have it on my TiVo). Seriously. No sound; just the logo. No explanation either. No “we are experiencing technical difficulties”. And they had no problem with the show scheduled directly after Star Trek.

They have had some issues with ST in the past (broadcasting the same episode two weeks in a row, substituting a totally different show and not changing the schedule, etc) but this is just plain silly.

48. Joe Atari - December 9, 2007

29. Mazzer:

How do you rent these on Netflix? All I can find are the original (first release, 2 episodes per disc) standard def DVDs. It mentions HD-DVD but no link to put them in my queue, I have HD-DVD enabled on my account, and I can see HD-DVD versions of other titles. Thanks!

49. Jeffrey S. Nelson - December 9, 2007

I’d like to hear what Sid Haig (Lawgiver #1) has to say about being on Trek. I’ve never heard him talk about it.

50. Engon - December 10, 2007

This was actually the first Star Trek episode in which a computer is undone after Kirk presents it with a logical paradox. That plot device may not be carried off as well here as it is in some later episodes, but one can not call it a “cliché” the first time it was used. This is also Star Trek’s first “stagnant society” (pre-dating even “Paradise Syndrome”) and its first society run by a hidden computer. It’s also the first time that the Enterprise comes under attack from a planetary defense system causing Scotty to report to the landing party just how much time the ship has left.

Whatever one’s opinion about “The Return of the Archons,” it is the ORIGIN of several plot devices that would be used in later episodes.

51. DJT - December 10, 2007


Netflix? I’ve been searching for TOSR on there constantly for weeks and haven’t been able to find them.

52. "Uncle" Clay Farrow - December 10, 2007

#22: “Landru Jackson” huh? So, does this mean Samuel L’s middle name is actually….? :)

And why the Hell did Kirk keep calling McCoy “Doc”? Even if that was scripted, didn’t seem a little strange to Shatner/Kelley/Nimoy? Decent episode, but bizarre inconsistency in dialogue.

…or, maybe it was filmed during a writer’s strike…? >:p

53. Cervantes - December 10, 2007

While I still think CBS Digital’s ‘E’s’ coloring is far too ‘dark grey’ for my taste, compared for the ‘whiter, brighter’ look I’d have preferred, I must say that the new ‘reverse view’ shots on the Bridge Viewer, and the shots of the ‘E’ ‘departing away’ from the planets at the end of episodes, now gives a far better feeling of the Starship entering deep space and exploring onwards…

54. tronnei - December 10, 2007

#31–Sulu’s fellow officer–Lt. O’Neil–is not killed off. He’s absorbed, and later stunned by Kirk and drugged by McCoy. Presumably he survives and returns to normal (like Sulu) when Landru is destroyed.

#52–Kirk calling McCoy “Doc” is not unprecedented; it’s done in a few other episodes. And there’s at least one “Bones” in Archons.

55. bmar - December 10, 2007

Like many of you, the perspective of years can change your outlook on things.

I too, fondly remembered this one as one of the best. When I watched it this past weekend, I looked at it with “fresh” eyes – or maybe just older and wiser eyes.

I think there are several great things about this episode – the setup, the downright creepiness of the place, the “underground” movement, the threat to the Enterprise, the way Landru sways back and forth from computer to “Landru” when Kirk is arguing with him/it, the overall premise and the way Kirk and crew solve the problem (for the most part…see below).

I think all of the stuff that doesn’t work is really in the last act of the show. It’s far too easy for Kirk & Co. to “get to” Landru. And I agree with the poster above that has trouble with Kirk’s flippant attitude once Landru has been dispatched. “Gee, I’ve just destroyed the thing holding this culture of ‘millions of people’ together. See ya later, hope it all goes well for ya.”
Also, not only is the scene when Sulu is back on the bridge really strange (what’s with that shrug of the shoulders?) – but it happens like 10 seconds after Landru dies – suddenly is back in uniform and on duty?

Lastly, as I mentioned above – while I do like Kirk’s logic in how he “argues” Landru to death – i.e. “your job is to protect and nuture the body, any harmful element must be destroyed, you are harming the body, ergo you must be destroyed” – is sound – the way the actual scene is written leaves much to be desired. It’s far too simple to get to landru, expose him/it, and argue it to death.

So, again, it’s interesting to look at these episodes with a refreshed viewpoint. I still like this one, though. The good outweighs the bad.

56. Andy Patterson - December 10, 2007


Ah the smart aleck. What would we do without them? I deal with them in the class room and on the web.

57. spockboy - December 10, 2007

During the Kirk speech about sociologist Linstrom we see the Enterprise pull well out of sight of the planet(on the viewscreen).
Then, on the last shot the planet is just behind them again?
C’mon gugs pay attention to your work.

58. Disgruntled Trekster - December 10, 2007

Well, I would love to add my own two cents worth, but the local affiliate decided not to air this episode in favor of three hours worth of infomercials. Ugh!
Bad enough that the previous weeks episode was moved to 4:30 in the morning, but to totally bump it this week for half-hour pre-paid commercials?
I just hope the alternate station will air it this coming week, even if at 5:00 AM next Monday morning.

59. Thomas Jensen - December 10, 2007

Lt. O’Neil–is not killed off and returns in the third season episode, “The Tholian Web” as a transporter tech.

60. mntrekfan - December 10, 2007

My fav impersonation I like to do of McCoy is that “You are NOT of the Body! You ARE NOT OF THE BODY!” scene.
Love that :)

61. Gary Seven - December 10, 2007

Andy Patterson-
Oh, c’mon. I think this may be one of those times when nuance is lost in a cyberspace format. I found your story about the mayonnaisey square hamburger funny and charming. I doubt you considered it a great tragedy either, just a cute story. That’s all I meant, to play along with your story, and joke with you.
We are all of the Body.

62. JB - December 10, 2007

Probably not a coincidence that this so-so story was one of Roddenberry’s. But did you notice that when the Red Hour struck, one of the women threw herself at Kirk?:


63. The Vulcanista - December 10, 2007


Yeah, I noticed, LOL! She’s got good taste!

Although I really *do* prefer Vulcans. Something about those ears! I’d have had a go at Spock during the Red Hour. Not that it would have gotten me anywhere, though. }:-(

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

64. OR Coast Trekkie - December 11, 2007

#57 I made mention of that in my earlier post (#32). It seemed to me as that whole end sequence was a glitch that didn’t get fixed before deadline… back and forth from viewscreen to exterior to viewscreen to exterior. I agree, make up your minds and double-check your work.

The orbit shot of the city was clearly above and beyond anything that anybody ever thought of or capable of doing in the 60’s. See folks, giving the effects a 2007 look isn’t such a bad thing, is it? While I love the efect, I do wonder what prompted them to do that, and not at least enhance the phasers? It would definitely be cool to see something like that again. Or perhaps an orbit on the dark side of a planet, being able to see city lights and things like that…

65. focuspuller - December 11, 2007

This may seriously be my favorite episode, if not one of my favorite, The strange acting, (my favorite is the wird guy they meet when they beam down “your daddy can put them up can he?”), brain washing, a few moment od good bad dialog, another kirk vs. the computer moment, and another kirk closing comment. It doesn’t get any better then this.

It’s episode like this that made Start trek great and show that there’s more to the show the klingons time travel and tribbles.

66. eagle219406 - December 11, 2007

I am not sure but I believe, while it may have been stupid, that what was up with the arguing a computer to death was to show that some problems could be solved without violence. I think that may have been the message Gene Roddenberry was trying to send.

67. Dave in RI - December 11, 2007

#64…The orbit shot of the city was clearly above and beyond anything that anybody ever thought of or capable of doing in the 60’s. … While I love the efect, I do wonder what prompted them to do that, and not at least enhance the phasers?

I would say they did the city shot but not enhance the phasers is because it was easier to produce a total cg image compared to one that includes live action in it. Other posters who are more tech savy than me could explain this in much greater detail.

68. Rich - December 11, 2007

The town shots for this ep were filmed at Desilu-Culver’s long gone but still famous “forty acres” -originally part of RKO and built in the late 20’s and used in such famous films as “The Magnificent Ambersons” “Gone With the Wind” and “King of Kings” to name a few. Fred Astaire was working nearby on “Finian’s Rainbow” and would visit the “Star Trek” company as his good friend Harry Towne (Reger) was a guest star on this ep.
It’s too bad that CBS didnt digitally extend the buildings-giving them four or five stories to give the effect of a larger city..particularly in “City on the Edge of Forever, which was also filmed there.Or at least they could have digitally erased the culver city hills behind the clock tower. It always looked so shoddy.
Wasnt Torin Thatcher a pleasure and a joy to watch? I always love him.Great, great character actor. “Here are your WEAPONS! …You may NEEEEED them!”

69. Engon - December 11, 2007

The Forty Acre Lot was also the town of Mayberry on “The Andy Griffith Show” where town was deliberately shot in such a way as to make it appear that most of the buildings were only one story tall. The area is now an business park. The Sherrif’s Station is a parking lot.

70. Engon - December 11, 2007

The Forty Acre Lot in 1965…


71. bigmike - December 11, 2007

It would have been nice if they actually showed the shot of the heat beams pulling the enterprise into the planet instead of just a simple shot of the enterprise in orbit

72. eagle219406 - December 11, 2007

#71 It would have been nice if they actually showed the shot of the heat beams pulling the enterprise into the planet instead of just a simple shot of the enterprise in orbit

Yeah I know what you mean. I was kind of dissappointed myself when I didn’t see them.

73. neal - December 11, 2007

Effects: first shot was breathtaking. Now 2 nitpicks:

1) The next shot, E pulling away, anyone else notice something amiss? I replayed it on tivo a few times. It seemed to me that the planet rotation movement simply froze for a few frames just before the scene ended. This kinda wrecked the illusion.

2) The next-to-last shot shows a rear-view mirror shot of the planet whipping away into the distance, so fast you think it’ll be a pinpoint in one more second. Then in the final shot, you see the E pulling by with the planet still big and the E moving so slooowwwwwllllllyyyyy past. Those 2 shots sure didn’t fit together.

Nitpickers rejoice. Tis the season to be nitty.

74. Gary Seven - December 11, 2007

Re: #73, etc.:
Couldn’t it be that we were looking at two perspectives of the E during overlapping times?

75. Rich - December 12, 2007

Neal – you’re exactly right. It was jarring.

76. Roxana - January 2, 2008


You made me laugh with the Mr Sulu and the dancing bears bit. I wish there really had been dancing bears!

I think this episode is cool. But then, I thought And the Children Shall Lead was cool…

77. TOS Purist - January 17, 2008

I figured they’d pimp up Landru the computer a bit…I’m surprised they left it as-is.

78. xamfra - January 29, 2008

Kirk’s comment toward the lawgiver’s unemployment wasn’t unintentionally funny, it was meant to get a laugh.

I think this episode is one of the most bizarre things ever filmed for television. From the artificial placidity of the controlled population, to Red Hour, festival and Tula’s rape, the timid underground movement of old men immune to absorbtion to the creepy summoning of the body turning the population into malevolent zombies. It’s extraordinary.

Kirk has little patience for the culture amid Landru’s attempted destruction of the Enterprise.

The first time I saw it I was impressed by the revelation that Landru, who presented himself as a god, was a computer. I think people these days have no conception of the paranoia people felt about the computer revolution in the 1960’s. I loved Kirk’s bravado and ease of destroying an authoritarian ruler whose motives had never been questioned.

79. Jeremy - June 23, 2008

The only Anti-Mormon Star Trek episode:P

80. aron smith - September 8, 2008

A couple of years after this episode aired a psychologist named Dr. Arthur Janov started appearing on talk shows like the Mike Douglas show, et al., pushing his primal scream therapy. Even jazz trumpeter Maynard Ferguson started sporting a fuzzy hairdo and released a jazz album named “primal scream” Does anyone know if California psycho-therapy cults played a role in this episode? Landru does seems to be based on the type of cult guru figures becoming more popular in 60’s culture. The population is controlled, and then forced to ‘scream’ at periodic interviews like Janov Primal Scream therapy. Perhaps this was a subtle dig the producers and writers of Star Trek were making to the trendy practice and big Hollywood going into the doubful promises of these ‘new age’ gurus. Landru even seems to sport the type of “wild hair” being worn by Janov and others. I would even to hazard to guess that some sort of allusion is being made to Scientology and ridding oneself of mind controlling ‘thetans’ and ‘freeing oneself’ from the brotherhood AKA computer with occasional virus or backup problems…


“Dr. Janov received his B.A. and M.S.W. in psychiatric social work from the University of California, Los Angeles and his Ph.D. in psychology from Claremont Graduate School. Before turning to Primal Therapy, he practiced conventional psychotherapy in his native California.”

81. John O - February 18, 2009

#5, #36:

Here’s some food for thought:

The TOS writers grew up in an age where the classics were more widely taught and read than today:

The idea of a planet full of emotionally repressed, “flat” people was probably inspired by the “island of the lotus eaters” segment of _The Odyssey_.

The notion of the “Red Hour” festival where everyone suddenly goes berserk and starts rioting, is IMHO loosely drawn from the ancient Greek cults of Dionysos. At certain times and places, the ancient Greeks would feel themselves “called” by Dionysos, and run off into the hills to drink wine, dance madly, and generally carry on outside the prescribed social limits for a few days … then eventually wander back into normal life. There is a play by Euripedes called _The Bacchae_ that (fictionally) represents such an “outbreak”.

“Back in the day” — at the time the originally aired — most people would have gotten these references, not much exposition or explanation needed, as what the episode posited was well-attested in classical history.

And …

The (then-contemporary) version of a “Red Hour” could be found at any Doors or Grateful Dead concert :-)



82. Neville A. Ross - October 18, 2009

#5-I don’t blame you for feeling this way about this episode, it is stupid somewhat, and to a non-Trekker, it sounds dumb. I still like it, though.

#81-Classically-inspired or not, to some people it sounds, and looks, stupid. Not everybody’s knowledgeable about the Greek classics like you, and to expect them to know this as the basis for the episode is a bit much.

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