Remastered “Plato’s Stepchildren” Airs This Weekend

The Enterprise answers a call for help from some ungrateful aficionados of the classics

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When it comes to Earth-like civilizations for Kirk and crew to encounter, the Space Greeks of "Platos Stepchildren" are likely to be the least impressive. As for the digital upgrade there isn’t much beyond some establishing shots of the ship and planet. There is the ship being shaken and a closeup on McCoys tricorder, but thats about it

Kirk and Batman in Ancient Greece

This is not Shatner’s only trip to ancient Greek culture in 1968. He also played the title character in the TV movie Alexander The Great. Here he is with another 60s pop culture icon.

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The first??

Not among my favorites, for sure. and not much to do to improve either.

Not a great episode…

1st interracial kiss onscreen…

Spock looking foolish… I think I’ll re-watch Spock’s Brain instead =(

More crap from Fred Freiberger, the producer of the third year of Star Trek. He was also responsible for ruining a decent show (at times) …Space 1999 . With his dreadful Year Two!

Leonard Nimoy singing….his talent does not lie here…talk about bitter dregs…

A young Barbara Babcock… still 25 years away from Hill Street Blues…

I guess the idea for this story wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t executed very well.

I was never a Michael Dunn fan. I kept seeing Dr. Loveless from “the Wild, Wild West”. His casting was kind of gimmicky in this episode. I found it detracted from the drama.

Another week off for CBS-D with 25 seconds of SFX. And then a rerun of the remastered “Miri”. The week after is “The Omega Glory”. Dennis Bailey should send his digital starship Exeter over to them to save them some work. Maybe they could insert Garrovick, Cutty, Harris and B’Fuselek into this episode, too. Hodgkin, you magnificient bastard! I read your book!

Ooopsss… 15 years from Hill Street…

This is a GREAT episode that I CHERISH.


I’ll give it a look. Haven’t seen it in years…..

BTW, in the movie clip, Alexander/Shat better have some reinforcements coming asap to back up his buddies against the barbarians!!

Where did that clip come from? Shatner and West together – smells like camp to me.

Michael Dunn made this episode enjoyable. The Wild Wild West for me was almost as much fun as TOS. For most of the early 70’s our local station that carried Trek ran 4 hours of great stuff. 3PM Gilligan 3:30: Jennie or Batman 4PM Irwin Alan hour (rotated each day: voyage to the bottom of the sea/lost in space/time tunnel/land of the giants) 5PM Wild Wild West 6PM Star Trek – Monday Through Friday.

I always loved the day when Voyage to the bottom of the sea/Wild Wild West/Star Trek would line up. Great memories.

#6, I like the third season, but this one is definitely not one of my favorites. Now, granted…I can watch it…TO LAUGH AT IT! BWHAHAHAHA!!!!!

Cos, it is damned fine comedy.

For the love of YouTube… Nice find! That’s the first I’ve ever seen of the “Alexander the Great” movie. It would be a gas to see the whole thing. Looks like yet another Vasquez Rocks location for Shatner. He could have saved money just camping out there between film shoots.

I always sort of thought of this episode as a sequel to “Who Mourns for Adonis.” Like these were more of the same petty gods who fled ancient Rome. Not the way its written, but kind of fun to imagine it that way. It’s far from my favorite episode, but Shatner imitating a horse has just too much camp value to hate altogether.

I always felt the writer, director and producer conspired to punish the cast with this episode. The actors were proably secretly relieved when the show was cancelled after the third season, so they would never have to suffer the humiliation of being in another episode like this one. I find this episode is painfull to watch, but I still watch it because it’s so weird it’s entertaining (definitely not boring).

With only three seasons of original Trek, I guess you take what you can get.

In my opinion, “And The Children Shall Lead” still ranks as the worst episodes of the TOS series.

I am not a big fan of this episod either but I really like the chacter of Alexander. I thought his acting ery good. going from shy and fightened to full of rage.

Yeah, my bottom ones are:
WORST: And The Children Shall Lead (Hail, hail, fire and…)
2nd worst: The Way To Eden (yay, brother!)
3rd worst: Turnabout Intruder (you will be charged with mutiny!!!!)
4th worst: The Cloud Minders (I SAID, DIG!!!!)
5th worst: Spock’s Brain (Brain and brain, what is brain!?)
6th worst: Plato’s Stepchildren (I’m tweedle dee he’s tweedle dumb…)

The Way To Eden:

“Hey cool! Look what happens when I melt some of Nimoy’s fake ears! Instant Alien Hippy!!”

That and the Jefferson Airplane “Goin ta’ Eden Brutha'” tune made me throw up in my mouth a little. Try to look dignified as you play your bicycle spoke dealie on that one, Spock.

Cripes, we’re not even talking about that episode……..
Thanks for the memories, Jim J


Sorry if I brought back horrifying memories!!! Part of the charm of the original series stories. When they were ON, they were REALLY on…when they were OFF-UGHHHH!!!!!!

I’ve seen the entire “Alexander the Great” pilot–it’s a major guilty pleasure with a fantastic score by Leonard Rosenman, and a wild cast mix–Shatner, John Cassavetes (!), Joseph Cotten and Adam West…and I think it may have been filmed in Italy–I think it was produced by the same company that did Combat!

Jim J

God, I love Star Trek! On or off, complaints or praise, old or new, diamonds or shite. I love it all!

You all can keep them memories coming.

What’s amazing is that everyone on this site thinks that TOS is not only the best Trek show, but also one of the best sci-fi shows ever, yet they are constantly complaining about nearly every episode.

I just think that’s funny.

Alexander The Great came out on dvd last year…and they did a remarkable restoration job considering the crappy bootlegs that have been floating around. Available at and …

Did they use a different cut for spocks song? I don’t remember those lyrics. I think there was something about “Bitter Dregs”? Did that get cut of was it replaced?

Bitter Dregs remains.

Nice entering orbit shot. A reused leaving orbit shot. A couple shots of the Enterprise shaking. And they replaced the image on McCoy’s tricorder screen with a nice subtle and appropriately designed animated graphic that you see for about 5 seconds. They may also have removed some piano wire from the floating objects shots. That’s about it.

The episode was better in some ways than I remembered. The interaction between Shatner and Michael Dunn was particularly interesting.

I don’t understand those of you who think this episode is worse than “Spock’s Brain,” let alone the worst TOS episode ever. The acting was above-par, the story was compelling, and the extra characters were interesting. Kirk and Spock’s crazy and embarrassing behavior was meant to make the audience feel the our heroes’ deep shame and the Platonian’s complete control. I thought they did a good job of it.

The only major disappointment was that Kirk seemed to have simply given the Platonian’s a minor verbal scolding and left them to their own devices. The very final bit about bringing Alexander aboard the Enterprise was a nice touch, though.

25: Agreed, the opening orbit shot was well done, and I do think they must’ve cleaned-up wires. This is one of the only episodes where I didn’t think there was much more for CBSD to do in terms of enhancements.

This episode blows.

So did The Phantom Menace but I still watched it.

I find it interesting that Kirk recommends Delta-Vega be subjected to a lethal dose of neutron radiation if he can’t kill Gary Mitchell in “Where No Man Has Gone Before”, but in THIS episode he and his crew are threatened with death and put through humiliation and grief by power mad jerks posing as “Plato’s Stepchildren”…and the only thing KIrk does is give these losers a scolding???

Huh. Not that bad. This is another one that I haven’t watched in probably 20 years, because it was filed away in my brain as “Bad. Baaaaad.” But it’s not, really. The “Ancient Greece Planet” is actually, for once, not explained as some sort of silly “parallel development,” but is actually stated to be the work of aliens who used to hang out in Athens with Pericles. Pretty straightforward.

The dialogue is pretty good, the performances are just fine, and most of the cringe-inducing bits are supposed to be cringe-inducing, as we watch the characters be intentionally humiliated. Not that that makes it good, though; I’d much rather the episode build on some of its interesting ideas than watch a good 25 minutes of Kirk and Spock being pushed around like puppets.

(Worst moment: Uhura’s absolutely gag-inducing speech right before The Kiss. Gosh, Captain, I’m usually a frightened little girl, but seeing you be all manly all the time makes me feel safe. And now I feel a little bit tingly.)

And yeah, the stern talking-to at the end seemed a bit weak — remember, Starfleet considered the Talosians’ powers so dangerous that there was a *death penalty* for even visiting there. Maybe Kirk left a big “Danger: Telekinetic Megalomainacs Here” sign in orbit, you know, just to be safe.

Loved the entering-orbit shot, and the graph insert onto McCoy’s tricorder display. It looked like real data, and actually matched the dialogue! Nice.

So…not bad at all for the 3rd season (I’d even watch it again), but I can’t wait to get back to some of the much better episodes still to come.

Well, since this was an off-week, I figured I would take some time to mention my thoughts on specific effects and on this remastering project as a whole:

The ship is getting better. In the beginning, it looked very CGI… but it is improving. You should shoot a model from as many angles possible, and then use computers to do the rest, rather than create a computer model from scratch.

The planets, for the most part, have been great. Keep it up. Other space things, like the galaxy edge, (Where No Man Has Gone Before) the comet (Balance of Terror) and the Supernova (All Our YEsterdays) were great (though the planet or moon biting it at the end could be a little better done, such as it exploding itself).

ALL phaser fire (hand, rifle and ship) could use improvement and ALL should be redone. If you are going to touch it up for one show, you have to touch it up for ALL. For when you have tocuhed it up, it needs a little more texturing, to make it look like more of an energy beam. Phaser impacts need to be a little better, and the proximity phaser explosions need to be redone again. The vaporization in Friday’s Child needs to be redone (again) and should be redone in all episodes. And TOS Remastered has established and stated that all ship phaser fire will be blue. But in “A Piece of the Action” it’s green. Get that fixed. Fix torpedoes also. At that, fix every ship explosion.

It needs to better established when the Enterprise is at warp, going to warp, or coming out of warp. You have to streak the stars when the ship is at warp. And why NOT do the stretch & flash warp effect? After all, the Enterprise is travelling at warp speed. I’m sure any fan would be thrilled if you added those. No only would those warp effects would be great, but also, special time warp effect for shows like Tomorrow is Yesterday and The Naked Time, or other higher warp speeds, like when they redo By Any Other Name, would be well received.

You have to add things established in dialogue (such as a tractor beam, in Doomsday Machine or Space Seed.)

Really, all effects should match what has previously been shown in established canon (TNG, DS9, VOY, ENT). For example, the shields in Errand of Mercy were really poor and not done right. They need to be more translucent, and encompass the ship. The Romulan ship cloaking/decloakiing in Balance of Terror should be wavy/distorted.

In some ways, I understand the wish to keep with the vision of the original producers. But there are some places where they just looked like the retouching was just to show the best that the 1960’s could offer. That is absurd. You have to go all the way, or not do the project at all. Redone special effects doesn’t do the same thing as Star Wars: Special Edition. You aren’t adding and deleting scenes, simply enhancing special effects. You’ve already shown inconsistency to begin with; such as there being ships that are completely changed or even added (the Ion ship, the Klingon fleet). Yet, at the same time, Loskene is not redone to show a better representation of a Tholian, some phaser fire is not redone, a tractor beam isn’t addend. You haven’t redone a lot of displays. You redo the ships chronometer, but not the solar system display on the viewer in Spock’s Brain. Really, if you can completely change or add a ship, these other things can de done too.

I also see an irony in the fact that budget and time restraints are hampering an effort to redo effects that were cheesy to begin with beacause of budget and time restraints.

I really hope that for the DVD releases, they redo a number of the specific things I mentioned and that perhaps there be consistency in what is redone and how. I’m willing to wait a few extra months and pay a few extra dollars if some of what I have stated is addressed.

This is another one of those formula episodes that’s solved by the characters in under five minutes. The rest of the episode is just padding. (And the puppet-control scenes really go on too long! But they had no more story to tell.)

Problem: A planet with evil telekinetic a**holes.
Solution: Inject yourself with the same “magic juice” they’re using. Wait for it to take effect.

This one is so weak & formulaic, it could’ve been an episode of TNG.

Argh! They cut out bitter dregs!

Not the whole song, just the specific lyrics “bitter dregs!”

That was the best part of the whole episode!

#33 said “Really, all effects should match what has previously been shown in established canon (TNG, DS9, VOY, ENT).”

From all the interviews and past episodes and think we can safely say that this will never happen, and personally, if it did, I think it would be an abomination. The day remastered TOS ever does a rubber band stretch with the original 1701 is the day I stop watching.

Yes, they did cut out the “bitter dregs” part of the song. Not the song itse;f, just the bitter dregs line. GRRRRRR!!!!!! Regarding the effects-very well done.

#33-I am sorry, but I’d be hopping mad if they add a “stretch & flash warp effect”. Frankly, I’ve never liked it. I think they’ve been very consistent with phaser fire. Green is for stun for the hand phaser and ships phasers. The rest are the colors you mentioned.

31 – I think the difference is that Gary could have become a god and change the universe in a very Q-esque way, and these people could only control the real world, no metaphysical powers. Plus unlike Gary this could be reproduced easily, thus a balance of power. Just my thoughts on it.

This episode: even without the kiss; excellent. Kirk’s final speech to Parmen is vintage Trek philosophy; right up there with his “We the People”: re: Declaration ;”They must apply to everyone, or they mean nothing. Do you understand?” Corny? Maybe. Definitely Trek.


I’m in the minority that actually agrees with you. One of the reasons why TOS is my least favorite Trek series is the fact that it doesn’t “match up” with the other shows. I was hoping that this remastered project would fix that, and for the most part, I’m disappointed. They HAVE gotten better since last fall, though. When the ship is in warp, it appears as though the ship is moving faster than if it was at impulse speed. But, yeah, I would have liked to see the “flash” when it enters warp and the streaking stars. Maybe even have the blur of motion that they use in the movies.

But it’ll never happen. I guess I’ll just have to settle for second best, which is still better than the original.

re: 40. Kyle Nin
“One of the reasons why TOS is my least favorite Trek series is the fact that it doesn’t “match up” with the other shows.”

Why SHOULD it match up? It came first. It is the others that don’t match up.

I have all of Nimoy’s old LPs, and on one of them he ACTUALLY SINGS ALL OF THE “BITTER DREGS” SONG!

So if everyone is hungry to sample more “bitter dregs” I can make an MP3 of it and post in for all to hear. Let me know if you are a glutton for such punishment.

Actually, I enjoy the albums. On one he did a tribute to Lela Kalomi in Spock’s word. Very nice.

re/Jim J (#16): Herbert. :)

Stankster I agree with you as always. Great minds think alike. Kyle if you like TOS least why do you spend so much time posting on a TOS sight??? There’s got to be a Next Genie or Voyager site somewhere,… well perhaps not but we love you just the same. The strecth warp effect does look quite gay, but if they wanted to do TMP starburst warp once or twice I think we’d all be happy.

Kev agreed. Excellent episode. All about tolerance and battling Psedo-Intellectual elitism.. Very poingant with Alexander. Of course Bitter Dregs was over the top. That was the point. Parmen was trying to humiliate our resident Vulcan in the most personal and horrible way. In Spock’s case breaking down his self imposed barriers and ripping emotions from him.
The effects were awsome.That new shot of the E screaming into orbit against that very lifelike planet was awesome AND finally ship wobble that not only lookedgood but maked sense!!!!!!!

Brother Diabolik lets get those MP3’s up!!!!!

#44: “Kyle if you like TOS least why do you spend so much time posting on a TOS sight???”

This is a TOS Remastered site. Not TOS. And I didn’t say that I hated TOS. I just don’t like it as much as the other shows.

#41: “Why SHOULD it match up?”

Because it’s all STAR TREK. They should, at the very least, make it like the first few movies.

#41: “It came first. It is the others that don’t match up.”

So, are you saying that the effects of the other four shows should be changed to match the original series? I wonder how many people would be for THAT.

I thought the point of doing the TOS Remastered project was to make the FX more in line with the FX of the newer shows and movies. But, I guess not. Too bad. It’s a wasted opportunity.


Oh, and “Voyager” is my second least favorite Trek series. So, I probably wouldn’t be going to those sites at all.

#25: “They replaced the image on McCoy’s tricorder screen with a nice subtle and appropriately designed animated graphic that you see for about 5 seconds.”

Actually, it was about 2 seconds, but I thought it was the best new effect in the entire episode. A whole lot better than the original version, which didn’t seem to fit the dialogue.

Please, no warp stretch effect. Let the spinoff series exist in their own world. In 1979 it was something new to add ‘rainbow’ effects and see the ship stretch to warp. But I think it’s nice to see a return to minimalist effects when they remaster these classic episodes. They’re doing something new with some ship shots and keeping what looked good before.

Now if someone would just turn down the screaming opera singer during the second & third season titles, the world would be a better place.

Where’s Josh T, Kyle is trying to stage a Next Genie Coup de tat!!! Tea and banal poetry for everyone!!!!!!!

Thomaso – Definately agreed on both points


Actually, I think TNG could use an FX update also.