“Obsession” Remastered Review, Screenshots & Video | TrekMovie.com
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“Obsession” Remastered Review, Screenshots & Video April 15, 2008

by Jeff Bond , Filed under: TOS-R Screenshots/Video , trackback


A solid but somewhat unremarkable second season thriller, “Obsession” is best remembered by TOS continuity junkies for its contribution to Kirk’s back story, something referenced in James Cawley’s New Voyages and tantalizingly teased in early rumors about JJ Abrams’ Trek movie, although it now looks like we won’t be seeing anything on Kirk’s days on the U.S.S. Farragut in the film.

“Obsession” references a favorite Trek touchstone, Melville’s Moby Dick (look for it in “The Doomsday Machine,” The Wrath of Khan and finally wearing out its welcome in Star Trek First Contact), and in order to do so Art Wallace’s script has to toy with Kirk’s character a bit, making him rather more reckless and intolerant (both of other species and of the human limitations of his crew) than we’re used to seeing. If this were “Errand of Mercy” there’d be a reversal that had Kirk questioning himself and his behavior before the end of the story. But one of the episode’s odd limitations is that here, as in any episode of Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea where there was a monster on the loose, it turns out that Kirk is absolutely right to cast aside every human consideration in favor of hunting the creature down and destroying it, and the humanistic Dr. McCoy is all wet for suggesting otherwise. It’s an approach that works with a soulless machine in “Doomsday Machine” (the episode from which “Obsession” also borrows much of its score), but it seems strangely bloodthirsty when applied to a living creature in Trek.

Like “The Apple,” “Obsession” runs through redshirts like disposable rags—this is the episode that famously dispenses with Eddie Paskey’s Mr. Lesley, who is resurrected a few episodes later without a bit of the fanfare accorded Spock in Star Trek III (Paskey will tell you that he foolishly tried to remind the producers that they’d killed him off in a previous episode but they just wouldn’t listen). In fact the episode’s guest star could be the most celebrated redshirt of all—Stephen Brooks’ Lt. Garrovick is one of the very few “below decks” crewmen in the original series to rate a pivotal character turn, and Brooks isn’t bad in the role. In fact between Kirk seeing himself in the lad (just as he saw himself in the twitchy Mr. Bailey in “Corbomite Maneuver”) and Spock practically risking his life to give the moping security guard a pep talk in his quarters, Garrovick gets more love than any Enterprise red shirt before or since. And he proves himself more than amply Kirk-like in the episode’s strangely interesting conclusion as he and the Captain take turns trying to knock each other out so they can be the one to risk their neck to deliver that floating antimatter bomb into the creature’s maw. And you have to love any Trek episode that ends with this exchange: Spock: “There was no deity involved, Doctor—it was my cross-circuiting to ‘B’ that saved them.” McCoy: Well, then thank pitchforks and pointed ears!”

“Obsession” was never a visual effects highpoint in the series, and while the CBS-D Remastered effort here is a strong one, in some ways it makes you appreciate the artistry the original stone knives and bearskins effects were able to achieve. Two new planets are on display, both nice and orange as if the CBS-D crew had finally had their fill of all the bitching about Earth-like planets. The shots of the cloud creature itself are technically impressive, and there’s a real attempt to make the cloud appear massive and sprawling with a lot of inner activity. There’s a built-in limitation to what could be done here because the practical effects of the cloud, likely done with dry ice on the show’s sets, could not be messed with so the color and texture of the cloud was set in stone. The original visual effects crew created a simple but rather effective look for the creature in space, simply fading between two different shapes—one horizontal, the other more vertical. That gave the cloud creature a slithery, vaguely “creature-like” shape while in space, and also suggested a kind of visual streamlining that made it look like it was somehow moving fast.

The new effects seem to trade those qualities for a sense of vastness and complexity. The overall shape is simple and flat, with tendrils that flow out when the creature prepares to double back and invade the Enterprise, or hollow out to get out of the way of phaser fire. Virtually all of the Enterprise shots look nice and solid—whether it’s firing phasers or wheeling in space, these are some of the better renders done of the CG vessel. And there are some nice bonus shots playing around with the orbital angles—a shot of the saucer sliding beneath the camera while the Enterprise orbits directly above a planet instead of off to one side is particularly nice. The final shot is a killer too as the Enterprise (in a shot that may have been developed originally for “All Our Yesterdays” and its supernova) slides past us to reveal the planet Tycho IV with a massive, blackened crater where Kirk’s antimatter bomb went off on the surface.

by Matt Wright

by Matt Wright

Young Ensign Garovick

Scratching an itch with a phaser seems dangerous


1. Melissa - April 15, 2008

Strange but I always like this one.

“Scratching an itch with a phaser seems dangerous” lol What would have happen if that thing went off?

2. Quatlo - April 15, 2008

It had better gas. Thanks CBS digital.

3. jr - April 15, 2008

Great parting shot of the planet with the anti-matter crater! Too bad they could not include more of the explosion.

4. James R. Kirk - April 15, 2008

Shiny wax job on the Big E, again.

5. trekee - April 15, 2008

Nice shots of the Enterprise at the end and none of this ‘lets recreate a plastic model wobble in CGI’ that we seem to see too much of. *Really* can’t get my head around that one.

Ah well, roll on 2014 when it comes out in Bluray…

6. thomoz - April 15, 2008

I adored the cratered-and-airless planet shot that concluded the episode. The in-space cloud was pretty good too.

This episode stuck in my mind when i was a kid – perhaps it was all the blue faced dead redshirts. Perhaps i like Garrovick. Anyway, it’s an old favourite of mine.

7. Garovorkin - April 15, 2008

This Episode came as close to pure horror as trek episode ever did. I alys remember the scene when Kirk rushes to Where Garovick is and see the men dead on the ground faces a Ghastly blue. When I was kid this scarred me a bit. That cloud creature was just plain Malevolent. What was frightening was how it pass through things, change its size shape texture and fool scanners in to think it was something else and on top of that it could trave lat warp speed, and it throw it self out of phase and be else where when weapons were being used against it. This begg a qiestion, if it could throw itself out of phase then in theory it should have been able to survive even an antiMatter explosion, unless it caught unaware in this case. Also ,if it could throw its body out of phase, then when it was in the cabin with spock, the ventalation system should not have been able to suck it out of the room. Nor would flooding the vents with radio active material that Scotty did should not have been a problem for it.Actually, If it could phase itself though objects it did not need to travel the ventalation shafts ,rather it should ave been able to simply phase through the wall. Does this make any sense to anyone?

8. mca - April 15, 2008

nice chase shot good sense of speed and seamless cross shot

9. Dennis Bailey - April 15, 2008

Yeah, Kirk’s attitude in this one was pretty lame – as Jeff says. “Voyage To The Bottom of The Sea” indeed.

10. ALEC - April 15, 2008

I like the first pic of the Enterprise. Looks like the real model.


11. T Negative - April 15, 2008

The huge crater was a nice touch. I was hoping we would get to see a huge plume coming off the planet as well. One would think there would be a lot of debris flying into space after a blast like that. Nitpicking, I know, but that would have been sweet.

Still, this was a great effort by CBS Digital. Good work!!!

12. dan - April 15, 2008

With all my previous “bitching” this episode was well-done. :)

No barrell-rolling ships.
No-re-inventing and substituting with inferior shots.

Just plain enhancing what was there before. Beautiful closing shot.

13. Andy Patterson - April 15, 2008


I just went with it when I was a kid. I loved it and accepted every premise of the show. Just like I accepted Adam West as earnest and very sincere in his portrayal of Batman. It wasn’t until years later that I heard the “word camp” and even considered it.

I also kind of liked the new effects in this one

14. Captain Serek - April 15, 2008


Scratching with a phaser set to kill is bad, mmmkay. One wrong move and zap, ex captain.

On a more serious note, it is one of the better episodes of the second season with great acting, even Shatner gets to chew a little scenery. BTW, the phaser scratch was a nice piece of acting. It is called acting. Keeping your hands busy to make a point. That is why it works.

15. Denise de Arman - April 15, 2008

I always admired Spock for actually going to Garrovick’s quarters to talk to him. For a Vulcan who consistently stated his actions were always motivated purely from logic, his character shows compassion and empathy hardly expected from first officer of the ship to an ensign in Security. Spock’s character is always displayed as being appropriately kind toward others under his command, with instances such as this showing his genuine care for the feelings of others, although he would never admit to it.

16. Mark T. - April 15, 2008

I was a little annoyed that the local L.A. affiliate ran the episode some seven minutes late. My TiVo caught the tail end of some “cheating spouses on tape” crapfest. As a result, I lost the last seven minutes of the episode. Thanks to Trekmovie.com’s intrepid staff of reviewers, I finally get to see what I missed. Wow! I loved that parting shot of the crater. The other shots of the creature were fantastic as well. I really liked the undulating smoke tendrils. It felt like they were trying to create something that matched up better with the on-set practical smoke effects. Another great job CBS-D!

17. Al - April 15, 2008

This was an episode the BBC didn’t show for years because they thought it was so sub par

18. Garovorkin - April 15, 2008

This still begs the question if it could phase through things then, sucking it out through t ventalation shafts would not have worked nor would flushing radioactive particles into the vents. Hell, if it could phase through things why didn’t it just phase right through the wall? Also if it could phase and not be affected by phaser’s then in theory it should have been able to survive even an antimater blast because it could just thrown itself out of phase and just avpied the explosion. Think about it

19. nscates - April 15, 2008

Nice review. I remember watching this as a kid and thinking that Kirk was acting strange. So many other episodes had the crew trying to communicate with unusual and dangerous aliens, trying to discover the motives of the creature in question. Not this time.

The new visuals look good, though the old ones weren’t too bad in this episode if memory serves.

20. Diabolik - April 15, 2008

Kirk was channelling the inspector from Plan 9 right there.

21. Garovorkin - April 15, 2008

This is great episode but its got a huge flaw in its concept. If a deflector screen couldn’t stop it then how could a solid wall contain it?

22. Diabolik - April 15, 2008

Yep, the Inspector right here:


23. eagle219406 - April 15, 2008

I liked the effects in this one. I often wondered recently, why would anybody even think that a phaser would be effective against the creature anyway? It was basically a living cloud, it would be like trying to shoot smoke. It wouldn’t work.

24. JimJ - April 15, 2008

Yeah, even though there are flaws in the script, I’ve always had a sneakin’ admiration for this one. There’s something Garrovick that reminds me of Captain Decker from STTMP, but I especially like his delivery of the line, “Thank you, sir!!!” when Kirk lets him return to duty. I also like the fact that he does the old Kirk chop to try to knock out Kirk!!!

25. Star Quack - April 15, 2008

“it turns out that Kirk is absolutely right to cast aside every human consideration in favor of hunting the creature down and destroying it, and the humanistic Dr. McCoy is all wet for suggesting otherwise. ”

Sometimes that’s the case. And isn’t it an interesting change from the usual approach anyway?

26. Kobayashi_Maru - April 15, 2008

Enterprise looked tremendous in this episode.

I know a lot of old farts will have a problem with me saying this, but…I wish they would have taken a lot more liberties…spruce up these episodes a little. There’s maybe 5 or 6 TOS episodes that are even watchable.

…and they’re ONLY watchable now b/c of these remastering.

This coming from a Trekie of a “new age” that grew up with the movies and the TNG.

Continuity kills me.

27. Holger - April 15, 2008

One of my all time favorite TOS episodes. Thrilling story, very well acted and uncommonly serious interaction between the Big Three, and -for once- a convincing guest star, Lt. Garrovik. Did any other crew member ever get so much screen time in an episode?
The space shots are not very salient in this episode, as has been said in the review, but nonetheless: The remastering makes this great episode even better.

28. paustin - April 15, 2008

yes the episode wherein Shatner proves that the common cold will exist in the future….or maybe that explains his obsession…he’s alergic to that “sickeningly sweet” smell !

29. Thomas Jensen - April 15, 2008

The CGI in this one is very good. I also liked that Enterprise flyover of the planet, too. The cloud now matches the live effects as much as can be.

I think Shatner had a cold while filming this, his voice is raspy.

30. Reign1701A - April 15, 2008

I always thought this was one of the series’ strongest. It depicts Kirk as someone who is imperfect, someone who is capable of being driven almost over the edge of sanity. I love how McCoy and Spock confront Kirk on his attitude and actions, and the looks the crew give him while he’s ordering the pursuit of the cloud at high warp are phenomenally tense. Kirk is out of character because this isn’t a strange new life-form, it’s something he’s encountered before and it’s something he knows is dangerous. He is not exactly rational about it though, and he knows it because there are several points in the episode in which he questions his own actions via the captain’s log (something he doesn’t do much after the 1st season) and that just makes the Kirk character all the more human.

That said, this is rare instance where I do not think all the new fx are an improvement. I thought the original look of the cloud in space was way more convincing than what was done here. CBS-D literally made it look like a…cloud. Gone is the eerie coloring and strange alien-ness of the original effect, I was more worried that that thing would start raining on the Enterprise’s hull than suck blood. Also, I really wish that CBS-D would take the time to fix ALL the phaser beam shots, it’s painfully annoying. That said, the new orbit shots, the E herself, and especially the departure shot showing the blast crater on the planet were great.

I am very much a fan of this remastered effort as a whole, however, why the hell is there a rush to put these episodes out? Why do some hand phaser shots get fixed and some don’t? Why do some planets get new matte shots and others don’t? Why is it that the Okudas are saying “well we would’ve done that but we ran out of time”? I’d understand that if this were a brand new series, however this show is over 40 years old. TAKE YOUR TIME BOYS. I’d rather have them release one episode per month and have EVERYTHING they want to be done, be done. I don’t know whether or not this is because of pressure from paramount for DVD releases or what, but it is a real shame. Hopefully one day they’ll be able to go back and do everything they wanted to do.

31. Kobayashi_Maru - April 15, 2008

#30 “Gone is the eerie coloring and strange alien-ness of the original effect”?

You mean the horrible, barely watchable, old effects?

New effects are far more superior.

32. Kirk's Girdle - April 15, 2008

I always thought McCoy’s greatest line was “You wanted a trophy to hang on your wall. Well, it’s not on your wall, it’s IN IT!”

Oh yeah, cool crater shot. Just what I was hoping for.

33. Kobayashi_Maru - April 15, 2008


However, I totally agree with your last statement, about being able to go back and do EVERYTHING they wanted to do.

Some do seem rushed and if BSG can have the kind of effects on a weekly basis that they do…Star Trek deserves that kind of care as well.

34. Garovorkin - April 15, 2008

Hello has anybody read my comments concerning the who phasing thing? any thought on this one, anybody?

35. JimJ - April 15, 2008

Just goes to show, even whe n most people that have posted say they ike what they have seen, some won’t. Nothing wrong with that, it’s just human nature. Even the most popular political figures in human history have someone wanting to “knock them off.”

36. Iowagirl - April 15, 2008

Great character episode, and strong Triad interaction. We learn how heavily Kirk’s actually depending on his famous intuition, even to the point of getting obsessed. Nevertheless, he’s questioning his own actions in his logs which gives us a deeper insight into his doubts and concerns and at the same time gives us a strong feeling of being involved. We learn about Kirk’s past, his admiration for Capt. Garrovick, and his intense feelings of guilt resulting from the events which took place on the Farragut. The impressive scene when Spock and McCoy inquire Kirk about his recent decision prelude that part of the episode in which we are being shown the Commander who is able to overcome the past, who has learned to channel his strong emotions and to use them as a powerful weapon against a deadly creature.

37. JimJ - April 15, 2008

#34-I’d say when it’s ready to eat, it won’t phase.

38. Reign1701A - April 15, 2008

#31, I agree in almost every case that the new CBS-D fx are better than the old (although I believe that they could be better in some episodes, but still better than the original…which I guess doesn’t say much). This is why I’m upset that they don’t go back and add MORE new fx. However this is the one exception where I feel the original cloud fx in space was better than the CBS-D version. I just feel it looks like a billowing rain cloud rather than an alien creature, and does not match what it looks like on the planet. That’s just my opinion, good sir.

39. Diabolik - April 15, 2008

I always figured the cloud took on a different look in the vacuum of space than under the pressure of an atmosphere, so I’m fine with the look here.

40. Reign1701A - April 15, 2008

Ya know I guess if they gave it a pinkish hue I’d be happier.

41. Captain Slow - April 15, 2008


week after week i look at the effects screenshots and think “yeh, they look good this week”

Then i realise i am looking at the originals.

42. Geoffrey Alan Holliday - April 15, 2008

This is one of the richest episodes backstory-wise from which to come up with a story. Just what happened in and just after ”the Farragut years?” I know I have my ideas…

43. star trackie - April 15, 2008

#36- well said Iowagirl. This is a really good character episode and really helps one put Kirk’s “obsession” in TMP into perspective.

There is no doubting Jim Kirk IS awesome and it IS hard for him to hear my words over the loudness of his awesomeness. But episodes like this also show the man beneath the legend. Flaws and all, it’s this type of dimensionality, along with a brilliant portrayal by William Shatner, that makes Kirk so great.

And the new effects this time around were superb. Another fun hour of remastered Trek. Thanks CBS-D!

44. CanuckLou - April 15, 2008

Solid? Unremarkable? One of my favourite episodes! To each his own.

The new shots look pretty good.

The adventure continues…

45. Spockanella - April 15, 2008

Garovorkin, you are undoubtedly absolutely correct. But sometimes you just gotta work harder at the willing suspension of disbelief. When common sense (or, dare I say it, logic) intrudes, beat it back with a stout stick.

But you are right.

46. Batts - April 15, 2008

Someone said earlier “Bring on The Cage” I agree! I really hope that CBS does it real justice. We alerady seen Mudds Women and I do like the overhead shot of Rigel 12 when Kirk and co. are beaming down, but The Cage deserves some real nice fx shots. They are already ahead of the game with The Menagerie a little but there is still work needing to be done!

The computer systems on the E can be jazzed up a bit. When the Talosians tap the computers, perhaps showing quick glimpses of 9/11, the iraqi war etc would be GREAT!! Slowing down the E approaching Talos 4, in the remastered it seems like they were at Warp Speed and then quickly hit the breaks in orbit! LOL!

Does anyone think that someone central to the remastering project has been fired or something, I still dont sense 100% behind this. All in all with Obsession, GOOD TRY!

47. CmdrR - April 15, 2008

Nice work on this one. Jeff, thanks for comparing this ep to Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea. Mind you, I loved that one too when I was a wee one. Now, though… yikes! In a just universe George Takei would be sentenced to watch a compendium of all the Kowalski scenes from Voyage. Then, bitch all you want, George. Fact is, you got lucky!

48. eagle219406 - April 15, 2008

#46 The computer systems on the E can be jazzed up a bit. When the Talosians tap the computers, perhaps showing quick glimpses of 9/11, the iraqi war etc would be GREAT!! Slowing down the E approaching Talos 4, in the remastered it seems like they were at Warp Speed and then quickly hit the breaks in orbit! LOL.

Yeah that would be cool. But we have no way of knowing if they will even show that scene of the records when they air it. They may cut it out in syndication.

49. Imrahil - April 15, 2008

Looks beautiful; I loved the over-the-top shot of the big E orbiting the planet.

50. Engon - April 15, 2008

This has got to be the most ill-considered order Kirk ever gave…

“Flush the radioactive waste into the ventilation system. See what effect that has.”

51. BrF - April 15, 2008

Nice job here. Enterprise moves well and there’s a proper and impressive sense of scale in that closing shot.

52. Sci-Fi Bri - April 15, 2008

the shat pot belly is in full bloom in this one

53. Engon - April 15, 2008

One of the interesting things about this episode is the way in which Garrovick is depicted as being a reflection of Kirk’s younger self. Not only does he engage in self-sacrificing heroics by trying to judo chop Kirk in then end (no doubt what young Kirk would have done to save Garrovick’s father) but listen to Stephen Brooks’ halting speech pattern during his debriefing. Is he actually imitating Shatner’s halting delivery?

54. richr - April 15, 2008

More on Ensign Garrovick…

“James Gardner Brooks Jr. (August 12, 1942 – December 1, 1999) was an American film and television actor. Born in Columbus, Ohio, Brooks was best known as Special Agent Jim Rhodes in the television series The F.B.I., and his guest appearance as Ensign Garrovick in the classic Star Trek episode “Obsession”. He died of a heart attack on December 1, 1999.”

Well that sucks…he was only 57.

55. WVTrekker - April 15, 2008

I always like this one. As A kid it was rather scary. I have to dissagree with the review. Given how dangerous the creature was Kirks wish to kill it would be understandable. Imagine it loose on Earth!

56. ll - April 15, 2008

#45 sorry I get overzealous with the nit picky details, Never the less it is easily one of the finest and scariest episodes trek ever did, I would rate as unsettling an episode as Mantrap. The cloud creature probably one of the most vicious concepts ever created in a trek episode.

57. Anthony Thompson - April 15, 2008

I am usually a tough critic of the remastered FX, but – from what I see here – CBS Digital did a great job with this one. The ship and it’s movements look good. The cloud is also well done. I look forward to seeing this ep.

I’ve always liked this ep., but the story contained a major blunder: Kirk ordered Scotty to flush RADIOACTIVE WASTE through the ventilation system(!!!) to flush out the cloud crarture. That surely would have killed the crew more quickly and efficiently than the cloud would have!

58. richr - April 15, 2008



Kirk: “I’m sorry…I shouldn’t have used the word ‘conspire.'”

Possibly, the most over the top line delivered by Kirk when not under the influence of an alien or an oversexed [alien] woman!

59. 47!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! - April 15, 2008

Great episode! I hope the pre-refit Enterprise looks just as good in “The Cage”!

60. [The] TOS Purist aka The Purolator - April 15, 2008

This was always one of my favorite episodes; it’s an interesting character drama and a good ol’ space action story at the same time. Like pretty much all of TOS it was masterfully filmed, and I feel that the new effects are actually pretty well-done. I’d say that “The Menagerie” was about the only other CBS-D project that was done RIGHT, other than this one. The rest are just poor, half-assed failures.

61. OR Coast Trekkie - April 15, 2008

There was some good stuff here. Nice job giving the first planet a red-orange tint, though you can still see the water is blue. I wonder what red water would be like. I also LOVED the crater. A job well done.

This is an instance of where not enhancing live action shots is bothersome. They didn’t enhance the hand phasers, and they didnt enhance the cloud in live action, the result is that the cloud in space and the live action cloud don’t match at all. I’m one who likes what they did with the space cloud, so I wish they could have done some “enhancements” to the live action.

62. richr - April 15, 2008

Question to the gallery…the antimatter bomb always seemed to “float” as if it was on an anti-grav unit, correct?

That effect wasn’t changed or anhanced in any way, was it?

63. EnterprisingGuy - April 15, 2008

I thought the effects were good. However the view screen shot of the Enterprise chasing the cloud looked odd. The stars are whizzing by abnormally fast and the cloud was so stationary it looked like someone hung a cardboard cutout on the view screen as if to say “this is what the thing we are chasing is supposed to look like”!

Did anyone notice the background color of the walls changing in the briefing room when Kirk was chewing out Garrovick? It was fluorescent green behind him but the walls were blue behind Kirk and McCoy. Then in another sceen it was green behind them. When they walked out there was no green walls.

64. Diabolik - April 15, 2008

#62… let’s hope they erased the wires holding it… like they did the puppets for Sylvia and Korob.

Anyone notice if they did any wire removal on Nomad?

65. Diabolik - April 15, 2008

#63…. I thought the stars were too fast also… they were going “ludicrous speed.”

66. capt mike - April 15, 2008

well. as a true trekkie im very pleased with this episode. this to me ranks right up there with the dooms day machine as a great cgi show. they did a great job and the crater was a wonderfull touch.showing kirk in his obbsesion and kirks back story of the farraget was great. giving us more history on kirk and somthing not even mccoy and spock knew was even better.great cgi this time cbs. you finaly got us a great show. now please go back and fix some of the other cgi shots from other episodes.

67. DJT - April 15, 2008

this was a classic episode. Kirk, Spock, Mccoy, and Scotty all do their thing wonderfully.

68. FishDS9 - April 15, 2008

#16 My local affiliate cut off the first half hour with an episode of Family Guy. The ep started with Kirk and Bones in Kirk’s quarters. Talk about not happy.

69. SteveinSF - April 15, 2008

So I have a question–I cannot remember this but was the planet where the anti – matter bomb went of– inhabited?? Do they ever mention this in the episode?

70. capt mike - April 15, 2008

#69 i dont they they say anything about the planet being inhabited. though it would suck if it was inhabited.

71. Sean4000 - April 15, 2008

Thank you Max Gabl for another great planetscape. Max’s work has been exceptional. I like the crater. I like it a lot. Funny thing I noticed is that the tons of artificial grain make the CG seem grainier than the scanned film.

72. Garovorkin - April 15, 2008

#45 Yeah i got a little to Nit picky on this one, It is still pound for pound one of the creepiest nastiest episodes ever done .On par with Mantrap any day of the week. I think its as close to a pure good atmospheric horror story as Trek has ever done.

73. Irishtrekkie - April 15, 2008

@ 30

yes i have to agree , the problem just seems to be time , i think cbs remastered team can do great work , there just ot been given enough time , which sucks really. i wish they would go back and start again or something.

74. FredCFO - April 15, 2008

This episode also provided a little of the back story for Starship Exeter. Quince Garrovick, Exeter’s captain, is nephew of the late Captain Anthony Garrovick of the U.S.S Farragut and cousin of Ensign Stephen Garrovick, one time security officer of the U.S.S Enterprise.


Liked the bomb crater at the end, nice touch.

Serviceable episode, but somewhat derivative. The beamout during the anti-matter explosion was similar to the beamout from the Constellation at the end of “The Doomsday Machine”.

75. capt mike - April 15, 2008

# 74 it was not the exeter it was the starship farreget. that kirk was on as a young lt and captian garravick was it’s commanding officer.

76. Buckaroohawk - April 15, 2008

As usual, the shots of the Enterprise in space were excellent, and the new FX of the cloud when being pursued looked very good.

But (as usual again) CBS-D ignored some great opportunities to really enhance this episode. The hand phaser shots were fairly static (Spock firing at the tritanium rock and Garrovick shooting at the cloud), so it would have been a relatively simple matter to make them look better. Also, the FX shots of the cloud attacking the “disposable” redshirts could have been spiced up. Both enancements could have been achieved simply by overlaying the new FX over the established scenes.

Finally, the “big miss” was the anti-matter explosion on the surface of the planet. Kudos for showing the (really immense) crater the blast left behind, but I would have loved to see a quick shot of the explosion from space to make clear just how incredibly powerful it was. They could have slipped it in between the explosion scene on the surface and the scene in the transporter room without affecting the story or dialog at all.

It’s a shame, really. It’s obvious that CBS-D are working very hard, but the results have fallen short of my expectations. I’m watching TOS-R out of habit more than excitement at seeing the new FX now. So as soon as the final episode of TOS-R airs, I’ll be going to bed a little earlier on Sunday nights. I won’t be buying the Remastered box sets either. The new FX and DVD features just aren’t enough to make me drop that kind of coin.

77. I Love My Moogie - April 15, 2008

Another great performance by The Shat!

78. bdrcarter - April 15, 2008

If you can buy into the idea that the term “Red Shirt” is used endearingly to reference a crew member that doesn’t survive an episode, then I submitt that Will Decker is the “most celebrated.” Followed closely by Illyia…sorry but he had more screen time. Coming in at #3…Will’s daddy Matt Decker. I would have gone for David Marcus, who survived a MOVIE and a HALF…but he wasn’t a crew member. Sorry DM. (Does being the love child of a crew member qualify?)

And Garrovick can’t qualify as a true “Red Shirt”..he survived!

BTW, good thing the producers didn’t listen to Eddie Paskey…he’d have been out of job for an extra year.

79. Mr. Bob Dobalina - April 15, 2008

Shatner rules supreme once again in a terrific episode. Love the character work and how Kirk’s obsession here ties in with how Shatner played the character in the motion picture.

The effects are superb as always. TOS continues to provide a prime example of “how it’s done right.”

80. Dep1701 - April 15, 2008

Making a comment only vaguely associated with this episode: The original final shot of the Enterprise…the rear view ( number 16 above )that many people are complaining has been replaced several times with an alternate shot ( such as in this show, in ” Is There In Truth…”, “the Ultimate Computer” or in “By Any Other Name” to name a few ). I started wondering about that and went back to check some other episodes.

Granted the ‘turning’ version of the shot has not been used in the remasters, but the angle does still exist: go back and check out “The Immunity Syndrome”. The Cgi team did an almost perfect rendering of that angle, and it was used at least twice in that episode. They just have not replicated the ‘banking’ version, which I agree is too bad, as I am also fond of that shot.

81. Sam Belil - April 15, 2008

I totally LOVED this episode. For pure drama this may have been the best of the second season episodes (season 2 was clearly more action oriented, more humor and of course “space-babes”. Kirk in this episode was the most “human” Kirk since season 1 (perhaps since City of the Edge of Forever) — dealing with a past losses, self-doubt and guilt! This may have been the best Spock we have seen since the Menagerie and City of the Edge of Forever, what a great scene when Spock reaches out to Garrovick. Re-mastered or not, this episode was a total winner!!!

82. Roger - April 15, 2008

If the antimatter bomb worked on the planet why didnt the photon torpedo? Since its a matter /antimatter weapon?

Liked the crater.
Wouldve liked to see a residual blast wave moving out along the surface from ground zero as the E leaves orbit.
Wouldve been nice to see the cloud move towards the ship and go in the outer vent as a new shot.

How come non of these planets have moons that can be seen in orbit? Geez , show some nebulas once in awhile.

83. Sebastian - April 15, 2008

Always loved this episode, too. Some of the best acting by the Shat-man. The new FX really work well in this one. Like the residual crater left by the bomb. And a possible (?) explanation to #82’s question about the ineffectiveness of the torpedo vs the bomb. When Kirk and Garrovick set the bomb, the creature was just about to feed on their blood and was possibly vulnerable in that instant. In space, it was in “combat mode” and as Spock explained it could time-shift when anticipating an attack. Just a guess! But I love the drama in this episode and the guy playing Garrovick could’ve been a regular.

84. Biodredd - April 15, 2008

#63 – Back in the 60s lighting was creative to set a mood on the set. Frequently on shows like Star Trek, the lighting changed from shot-to-shot as the emotional impact of the scene changed. Its not a mistake, its on purpose.

85. Engon - April 15, 2008

Well, one ounce of matter equals 608,969 Kilotons of energy. Assuming it converts with one ounce antimatter, that’s 1.2 Megatons of energy. Although this is almost 1,000 times more powerful than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima, although the most powerful bombs in the U.S. arsenal today are capable of such a yield.

Garrovick states that their antimatter bomb “is more powerful than 10,000 cobalt bombs.” That would make each “cobalt bomb” relatively tiny at about 120 tons of TNT. The term “Cobalt Bomb” was current in the 1950’s & 1960’s as it was a type of bomb that would produce tremendous amounts of radioactive contamination. The doomsday scenarios in “Dr. Strangelove” and “On the Beach” were inspired by the “cobalt bomb.”

Hard to imagine that such a thing would be a Star Fleet metric.

86. Engon - April 15, 2008

That’s 608.969 Kilotons…

87. SteveinSF - April 15, 2008

#57–I almost forgot about the radioactive waste flushing–maybe they have little pills to protect them. Better yet, they have Mr. Spock’s hands on the air vent to stop the poisonous radiation–just like he tried to stop the cloud from coming into to Gerrivick’s quarters.

88. Garovorkin - April 15, 2008

#85 Wouldn’t an explosion of that magnitude crack the crust down to the Molten Mantle? Likely there would be more then a few serious tectonic repercusion events on the surface. At the very least it should cause the planet to go off its axis or worse shift its orbit. Mr Spock said it would rip away half the planet atmosphere, It seems to me that that type of energy release would burn off the whole atmosphere of the planet.

89. 47!!!! - April 15, 2008

At least it’s episode your nitpicking not the effects.

90. bdrcarter1 - April 15, 2008

Only if the blast took place deep enough in the crust. Light a firecracker in your open hand and it might sting or leave a mark. If you light it and squeeze it in your fist, you might lose a finger..or two.

I stole that from one of the asteroid movies.

91. Michael Hall - April 15, 2008

“#85 Wouldn’t an explosion of that magnitude crack the crust down to the Molten Mantle?”

And since such a minute amount of the Enterprise’s antimatter fuel supply could cause that level of damage to a planet, shouldn’t the ship’s destruction in Star Trek III have been far more spectacular, and leveled much of the Genesis Planet?

92. Engon - April 15, 2008

In 1961, the Soviets detonated “Ivan” aka “Tsar Bomba.” It produced a 50 Megaton explosion, the largest ever – equal to 3,330 Hiroshima bombs. As it turns out, the one-ounce, 1.2-Megaton anti-matter bomb was not as “powerful as man would ever get” even by the time this episode aired. Needless to say, “Ivan” did not rip away Earth’s atmosphere or change its rotation on it’s axis.

I guess we have to conclude that Tycho 4 is a pretty small planetoid.


93. Engon - April 15, 2008

Of course, the real tragedy of this episode is that the Vampire Cloud was merely trying to protect its children, who were harmlessly incubating in that outcrop of “pure tritanium” that Spock phasered at the star of the show.

94. DeBeckster - April 15, 2008

Has anyone ever noticed that at the end of the teaser you see one of the dead guys blink?

95. Captain Scarlet - April 15, 2008

#89 I was not nitpicking i was just asking question.

96. diabolk - April 15, 2008

#95, I agree, it would have been cooler to see a broken planet with a large chunk blasted away! And more realistic than a scorched mark that looked like my underwear after eating bad refried beans.

97. OR Coast Trekkie - April 15, 2008

Oh… and Transporter use #27 – Fixing the captains disheveled hair

98. [The] TOS Purist aka The Purolator - April 15, 2008

It just bugs me how they make the torpedoes red in TOS-R…I always liked the old silvery-white blobs that show up in TOS and “In a Mirror, Darkly.” They look cooler than the red things here. I guess it’s a lame attempt to have TOS “match” TNG and the like, but they shouldn’t have to change stuff about TOS to fit in with other shows. I don’t care if TNG has red torpedoes, but why not just leave TOS alone with it’s own silvery torpedoes?

99. Buckaroohawk - April 15, 2008

Michael Hall (#91),

The power levels of matter/anti-matter were seriously downgraded after TMP. In the original series, photon torpedoes were incredibly powerful weapons normally used only over vast distances because their explosive yield was so huge. This may well have been why neither the Enterprise nor the Constellation used them against the Doomsday Machine, since the ships were often in fairly close proximity to the planet killer. Khan also remarks in “Space Seed” that a matter/anti-matter explosion would cause the Enterprise to “flare up like an exploding sun.”

Matter/anti-matter explosions still packed a huge punch in TMP. One photon torpedo vaproizes the asteroid bearing down on the Enterprise while trapped in the wormhole. Later, when Kirk gives Scotty the order to blow up the Enterprise as V’Ger heads toward Earth, Scotty assures one of his engineers that the resulting explosion would have no trouble destroying a vessel of V’Ger’s size. We’ll just ingore the fact that Kirk planned on unleashing all that power while V’Ger was in Earth orbit (talk about global warming. Yeesh!)

For some reason, though, the immense power of matter/anti-matter reactions takes a severe downturn in TWOK. The Enterprise and the Reliant toss photon torpedos around like water balloons with nary a thought to what would happen if the containment fields around the reactors should fall. And at the end, Kirk is concerned about outrunning the Genesis wave, not an uncontained matter/anti-matter explosion from the Reliant.

This downplay of power levels follows through the rest of the films. The destruction of the Enterprise in TSFS seems to come from charges placed throughout the hull of the ship rather than from the warp reactors. The Klingon BoP goes to warp while still in Earth’s atmosphere in TVH. In TFF, Kirk, Spock, and McCoy don’t have to run very far to escape the destruction of “God’s” temple from the torpedo fired from the Enterprise. And in TUC, the Enterprise and the Excelsior completely destroy Chang’s prototype BoP with a volley of photon torpedoes while in orbit of Khitomer. Chang’s ship blew up, but it certainly didn’t “flare up like an exploding sun.”

This downgrading continued from the TOS film series into all subsequent Trek TV series and movies. Heck, the Enterprise-D suffered a complete warp core breach in Generations, yet the resulting explosion was entirely conventional in nature. And how many ships were destroyed during the war with the Dominion on DS9? A lot, and none ever lost reactor containment, I suppose. During TOS, a matter/anti-matter explosion was something you had to get very far away from FAST. For some unknown reason, though, subsequent filmmakers turned it into a much less powerful weapon.

Here’s hoping that the makers of the new film bring back the awesome (and, frankly, frightening) nature of matter/anti-matter reactions.

100. Garovorkin - April 15, 2008

#99 More Frightening is the possibility that we might actauly develop something like this for real. Right now we can produce very minute quantities of Anti mater but only in accellerators. and we can’t store them or keep them in stable existance.

101. Dan Siciliano - April 15, 2008

Yeah, That Crater shot was fantastic, and that almost from beneath flyby of our fine lady was just awesome!!!

102. Garovorkin - April 15, 2008

#no the more I look at that burn mark that supposed to be a crater the more convinced I am the remastering people had no clue at all. An energy release of that power should have done more then stain the planet surface.

103. Commodore Z - April 15, 2008

Well, if you wanna get technical about it, an explosion big enough to make that crater would leave thousands of tons of dust still in the air, as well as thousands of tons of rocks still in orbital and even escape trajectories. Not to mention fires across an entire hemisphere and atmospheric shock waves rebounding around the entire planet.

The crater does just fine, thank you.

104. Garovorkin - April 15, 2008

# 103 actually a few of those details that you mention would been rather cool, not bad Commodore Z not Bad at all.

105. scifib5st - April 15, 2008

Ok, just how many Garrovicks does it take to make a cake?

Maybe we can aske Mark Linseny, from “Paul Reever and the Radiers”

106. scifib5st - April 15, 2008

Perhaps the best comment would be about Starship Farragut doing an animation version aka, “Filmation” version of ST… why does some one not post that?

107. Tango - April 15, 2008

Thought the ep was great. Had a twilight zone vibe to it. One minor nit pick: Shatner’s exposition dialog in the beginning teaser seen needed to be reworked. “It was years ago…on another planet…” Who talks like that?

He could have as easily said “It was a dark and stormy night”

As far as the new special effects..All great, but I don’t even thenk TNG had star effects traveling faster than what I saw in this episode. As 65 Diabolik said–“ludicrous Speed”

108. Tango - April 15, 2008

Whoops. “Scene”. Not “Seen”. –and I have a spell checker too. Maybe I should use it.

109. =A= - April 15, 2008

the best effect vision is last picture of uss enterprise leaving the planet and ring with blast! good shoot..

110. Engon - April 16, 2008

Would there really be a way to flush to the radioactive waste into the ventilation system? Those starship designers think of everything!

111. Xindi1985 - April 16, 2008

Here is my “Obsession” Remastered FX-Reel with one more scene!!!!

112. Garovorkin - April 16, 2008

#110 Scotty being the engineering genius would have founds a way, but still how could minute levels of radiation have any kind on en effect on a creature that could throw itself out of Phase like that. If Phasers and Photon Torpedos could not effect it, I don’t see how it would even notice a tiny puff of radio active gas.

113. Batts - April 16, 2008


You are right! Syndication may pose a problem, but what I meant was a very special clean-up and remastering of the episode that started it all. If you and I were the network and some guy was trying to sell us this show, I mean make me feel and think I am in the future somehow??

1960’s history was presented so, lets stay consistent. I really think squeezing in some shots of the E approaching Talos 4 would be sweet! Make a special edition dvd or something! :)

114. Trek or Treat - April 16, 2008

The climax of this ep is better than I remembered. There’s nice tension in the transporter room after the antimatter explosion. Then in the middle of that crisis, things get ramped up another notch when you hear Chekov on the intercom telling all decks to stand by for shockwaves, and the ship gets tossed about.

Loved it
Loved the new fx.

Nice work CBS-D!

115. Bob Jones - April 16, 2008

It never struck me before, but watching it this time, the forced drama of Kirk and Garrovick having to bait the antimatter bomb themselves and wait until it was almost on them seemed rather unnecessary. First, couldn’t they have energized, waited three seconds, and then detonated?

Second, and more important, when you’re talking about an antimatter bomb that will do that much damage, did they really need to wait until the creature was right on top of the bomb? As if detonation when the creature was five feet away would be ineffective? :-)

116. Gary the Gorn - April 16, 2008

Great episode.

I wonder what Picard would have done in this situation.

Whenever Kirk met menacing new alien life forms he wanted to kill it. I think Picard would have negotiated with it and created some kind of dialog. Maybe he would have tried to befriend it. It would have be an excellent ally against the Borg. That’s why the original series was great.
Plus better fight music.

117. FredCFO - April 16, 2008

#75 Capt. Mike:

I was talking about the fanfilm Starship Exeter. I made no reference to young Kirk.

118. OMG - April 16, 2008

OMG, the Enterprise was attacked by a bunch of hypervoxels!

119. Jackson Roykirk - April 16, 2008

Maybe they will re-master it in such a way that Mr. Leslie stays dead ; )

120. Robert Bernardo - April 16, 2008

Another one of my favorite season 2 episodes. This time with an evil cloud, more primeval creature as compared to the benevolent, loving Companion cloud of the episode, Metamorphosis (both clouds having similar sparkly effects at times).

I like Obsession’s other view of a darker, more flawed Kirk.

121. Engon - April 16, 2008

Once in space, the Vampire Cloud bears a strong resemblance to the energy cloud in the classic Outer Limits episode, “It Crawled Out of the Woodwork.” Now that was one bad*** energy cloud!

122. toddk - April 16, 2008

just read the wiki about mr leslie..hahhaha..i really never paid attention to whom the cloud creature killed..however , funniest mr leslie scene is from “and the children shall lead” where kirk is talkling in giberish and mr leslie just stands there…priceless!

123. dr oaschbottl - April 16, 2008

this time really good work!

124. eagle219406 - April 16, 2008

#57: THe ventilation system was closed up to prevent the creature from escaping into the ship. It only got out through Garravick’s because he jammed it open when he threw the soup bowl at it.

I guess you could say that future sights of Mr. Leslie could have been his twin brother. They never said anything about his family, at least not until Paskey guest started in New Voyages as his father.

As for why the creature couldn’t just go through the ship’s hull. It’s basically a cloud, clouds or smoke can’t go through walls.

125. eagle219406 - April 16, 2008

Sorry, I meant Guest STARRED.

126. Mark 2000 - April 16, 2008

So many artists, computers, money, and man hours to make cotton balls in look like there’s cotton balls floating in space. Good job, CBS. I could have done the same job for you for only $5.

127. scifiguy67 - April 16, 2008

i just wanted to see the big E meet up with the yorktown at the end!

128. Holger - April 17, 2008

#127: Yes, absolutely!!

129. Cervantes - April 18, 2008

#126 Mark 2000

Yes, there sure has been some unimpressive stuff thrown into the overall mix of this project unfortunately…

Sure, the new effects are more up-to-date than the previous rushed ‘original, work, but a lot of them are far too rushed also, and too many of the new ‘creative choices’ seem already ‘dated’ in their conception and look… Better, consistent CGI work overall could have really wowed ALL the fans of this TOS ‘remaster’, in which case I now hope that future ‘fan editors’ will take up the challenge.

I’m still getting my head around how Adywan’s extra efforts on his ‘Star Wars Revisited’ edit have made the previous ‘Special Edition’ DVD release by the mighty ‘Lucasfilm’ seem slipshod!

Oh, and that’s an fine site you’ve got there, by the way.

130. Holo J - April 18, 2008

Although I still hold out hope one day for a more complete effects overhaul for TOS. I wouldn’t pay for the latest work as for me not enough has been changed, too much has been rushed and there have been lots of ‘creative choices’ that haven’t worked for me to own this remastered copy.

I really dislike the shot of the Enterprise on the effects reel from 20 to 23 seconds in. They have used it far too often in this project. I know it’s meant to recreate a classic shot but I feel this is a waste of valuable seconds to show of the Enterprise traveling a speed.

They could have used the seconds to show off the Enterprise with a much better and more interesting shot than that. Maybe have it more head on with a bit of camera movement over the Saucer section. A bit like the shot over the Planet at the end of this week effects reel.

For the work they have changed its not a bad effort this week though.

131. Commodore Z - April 21, 2008

130: Of course, if CBS-D were to change all those familiar shots, other fans like myself would probably complain that they’re changing too much.

132. Terra Prime - October 5, 2010

9. Dennis Bailey – April 15, 2008

“Yeah, Kirk’s attitude in this one was pretty lame – as Jeff says. “Voyage To The Bottom of The Sea” indeed.”

Not necessarily. It was a well written episode by Art Wallace and it did give some background into Jim Kirk’s past.

If anything, it had some real interesting moments, and in a way, set the stage for Starship Exeter’s leading character.

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