“The Changeling” Remastered Screenshots + Video + Mini Review

I am V’Ger Nomad
"The Changeling" starts off as an action packed episode with a cool space battle and then quickly turns into a somewhat muddled futuristic version of Mary Shelley’s "Frankenstein." In this case we have Kirk stepping in to play the role of the creator of technology that has gone oh so wrong. But in traditional Star Trek fashion, man once again is shown to be superior by outwitting the stupid (yet seemingly all-powerful) technology. Kirk even gets his logic complemented by Mr. Spock. Even though this episode is decidedly mixed, it still ended up inspiring the creation of V’Ger for Star Trek The Motion Picture (and foreshadowed the perfection-loving Borg too).

The only thing new CBS Digital really had new to do this week was the Nomad attacks and they decided to go green. The energy bolts had a nice wavy effect that was similar to Nomad’s scanning beam used later on Uhura. The final Nomad explosion at the end was good and certainly an improvement over the scratched grainy original which doesn’t come close to looking like an explosion in space. However the new explosion had a strange brief nebula effect which doesn’t make a lot of sense for something so small. Although minor, it shows that sometimes less is more and CBS should not be afraid of keeping it simple. Almost all the shots of the Enterprise were very ‘shot for shot’ matches for the original, except for a nice pan over the top of the saucer at the end. 

SFX Video

SFX Screenshots

Remastered & Original









Me help

Me smart

Me nomad



Nomad on MST3KOur little perfection fetishist showed up on an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000…check it out (comes in around 3 minutes into it)


Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

did they hide the wires?

Anyone find it strange that a photon torpedo can’t destroy Nomad, but security still tries to destroy it with hand phasers?

re: 2 Keith

Maybe they should have gone at it with stone knives and bearskins :)


What’s next week’s episode?

ohhhhh NOMAD. you silly robot. I heard from a reliable source last night that NOMAD will NOT, repeat NOT be featured in the new movie. Just wanted you all to know that before the rumors got out of hand.

Too bad
So sad
Just a fad
Makes me mad
But, it’s rad!

Not a winner episode by any means. Some of the rare times that robots were used as part of the story, or reused in this case. I believe this little robot was used again in a stronger episode with a certain immortal. Oh those low budget STAR TREK days.;) Still I can’t help but love them as they have more heart and soul them some Scifi shows with bigger budgets. I do recall growing up wondering why the Enterprise would not have a few robots here and there for hazardous missions. Maybe all those redshirts really were advanced androids all this time.;)

More of a fan of these shots trying to look a little closer to the original style. Of course I still thinks the CGI ship isn’t right, but I’m goofy that way.

I always found it odd that the Enterprise withstands several “bolts” from Nomad, each said to equal the energy of 90 of their photon torpedoes, and yet Kirk is beside himself with disbelief when Nomad manages to withstands just one photon torpedo in return.

#1: Yes, looks like they did clean up the wires. I didn’t notice them. Anyone?

Exactly right, #9. That always bothered me a lot too. It really is obviously inconsistent and it is annoying the writers couldn’t put a few neurons together. Very careless and stupid.
But a good episode.

In addition to playing “M4” in “Requiem for Methuselah,” Nomad was also the Romulan cloaking device in “The Enterprise Incident.” I hope he got residuals.

I thought I also noticed a different and more fancy picture on one of the monitors above Spock’s station.

LOL I loved the Doctor Who reference in the caption for the last pic!! I actually did a photomanipulation of just that idea a while ago, check it out: http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y38/Deloravius/Trek%20Who/FINAL-DalekTrek.jpg

This was always one of my favorites. I wouldn’t dare argue the point, though, because I have special reason to love it that seriously clouds my judgement: this was one of the three TOS episodes I owned on video when I was a wee lad. Every year or so, I would save up ten full dollars (which was a lot of money back then, you young’uns) and go down to Best Buy to purchase an Original Series VHS. This was a time of brutal and difficult decision making, as I always wanted to pick one I had never seen before, and there were quite a few of those, and just how is a boy of that age to judge what a good episode might be from just the cover?

Anyhow, I’d probably seen “The Changeling” two or three dozen times before we lost the tapes, and so it holds a place very close to my heart.

“Non sequitor! Error! Error! Error! Error! Tan Ru! Tan Ru!”

It truly seems that CBS is not taking this project seriously at all! They did not even change the phaser fire, like in wink of an eye, I mean c’mon. If we are going to spend over $100 on dvd’s please make them interesting. This 2nd season project is nothing but reuses. This episode did not involve planets, just ship exteriors.
Did anyone notice that at the time St.com was alive! the remastered trailers for season 1 were more exciting to watch. I dont know what happened??
Ultimate computer, I hope they really give this the TLC it deserves!!

Oh, and the point of that whole post: well done, CBS Digital. It is a remastering worthy of one of my much-loved episodes.

I’m confused, though…if they were going for a green look for Nomad’s energy bolts, why weren’t they consistant with the redshirt zapping scene? For consistancy’s sake, wouldn’t it have made more sense to either change the space bolt color to red to match the redshirt scene, or change the color of the redshirt scene to match the space bolts??

I also can’t figure out why they leave some phaser effects alone, and allow the 60’s effects to prevail (apparently thinking they’re okay enough as is), but they replace stuff that IS okay enough as is (like Nomad’s space bolts).

I think CBS digital is really starting to get bored with this project. It sounded like a really awesome and amazing enterprise (pun intended) but it’s just fallen apart.

Re: 7. Rick

“Still I can’t help but love them as they have more heart and soul them some Scifi shows with bigger budgets.”

Right on, Rick, right on! There are so many that do not appreciate that. All the flashy whiz-bang is no substitute for old fashioned “heart and soul”.

Next week is “The Ultimate Computer,” according to Comcast.

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

“To boldly go where Nomad has gone before …”

1) So why was this episode titled the ‘Changeling’?

2) I have TOSR on DVD and realized that hey they no english subtitles, and the spanish audio is super crap. To me that shows the true colors of this Remastered endeavor. If they can’t even upgrade that, how am I supposed to hope for anything above and beyond from the visuals. Really.

Note to Paramount. Star Trek is obviously a revenue producing item that should receive better treatment. When such sub par revamping is executed, it engenders animosity from fans and puts your business position with them in a state off ill repute.

If blu-ray does come out on top I hope you guys give this stuff over to ILM, the real masters of remastering. Who cares how long it takes. Just get it done right – that way Trekkers will vouch for your product, you guys will make tons of cash and the fans will be happy.

Defeat the no-win scenario.

I alone must bear responsibility for the unimaginable losses caused by the Nomad autonomous space exploration prototype. As I now realize, albeit far too late to save billions of souls, Nomad was equipped with an insufficiently developed and tested auto-destruct mechanism. Had the system worked as intended, Nomad would have annihilated itself on determining that it had been irreparably damaged or that its integrity had been compromised in any way that would have presented the slightest hazard to the ecosystems it was designed to study.

Captain Kirk and the crew of the USS Enterprise have again proven, in a spectacular episode of courage and intelligence, that there is no mere technological substitute for Star Fleet’s manned space exploration program. It is only through the combined efforts of the boldest and brightest minds of the Federation that we may learn more about our infinite universe, and more importantly, about ourselves.

– Jackson Roykirk –

Beeing such a Dr Who fan as well, I’ve simply loved the EXTERMINATE picture. A very nice way to start the day.

I believe this ep was an inspiration for TMP. Similar storyline.

Love the Dalek reference! :D

Did anyone notice(after Nomad blew up) that Kirk looked right at the camera before the extremely awkward fade to the Enterprise?


I thought for sure that CBS was going to go all CG with nomad. I never saw wires even in the dvd’s but the shot where nomad follows Mccoy onto the turbolift is god awful..looks like the camera and nomad are bolted to a shopping cart

Shame on CBS-D! lazy bums!

even remastered that enterprise looks ridiculously small.

#12 that’s fricken halarious.
#18 I’m beginning to agree with you.
#21 very good! And funny.
#22. Haha check out “tomarrow is yesterday” that title had nothing to do with the story ether. Also they (CBS/paramount)
want you to allways search for the best edition of Star Trek episodes. Do you really think this is the last TOS dvd set to end all sets. Haha.
BluRay is doomed.
Loved the Dalek reference.
This was a great episode for alot of reasons.

The green weapon that Nomad fired was actually pretty good. The expolsion of Nomad was not. The original was actually better. The new explosion was just basically nothing too much more than a flash. The photon torpedo was ok.

But this is another one of those episodes where the things that were not fixed outweigh what was fixed. The reason for that is because of the minimal amount of space effects. You had a lot of opportunities to fine tune and fix: the had phaser shots – come on, having them stop suddenly at the edge of door frames?? You can touch up the beams, and add a shield around Nomad. The phaser shots that Nomad fires – you mean to tell me that a robot fires out a series of diamonds? The shots at the Ensign Ricky’s and the shot at Scotty needed fixing. The vaporization of the officers needed to be fixed too.

The scan of Uhura was actually not too bad of an original effect. It could have been made just a little bit more wavy, and added pulses to the beam. However, that’s just pickiness talking. Its still ok as is.

CBS-D here’s somethign for you to chew on: if you did more with this remastering going full on hardcore – fixing ALL those effects (like the phasers & vaporizations – and yes, I saw “Wink of an Eye,” so don’t tell me it can’t be done) digitally re-recording the music (as originally composed) and sound effects (an exact duplicate) I would be willing to pay what you are charging and probably even more. I’m sure there are a number of folks on this site who post on this forum that gree with me.

I think I speak for many people when I say that I really dislike that I was misled with how far this project would go when I saw the phaser effects on “Wink of an Eye.” The big episodes like “The Doomsday Machine” we expected something mind-blowing and we thank you for that. But even these minimal effects episodes need some love too, and fixing hand phasers is a nice touch. You fixed a vaporization (although I don’t think it was all that great) in “Wolf in the Fold” (I think) so that can be done too. To me, you have to fix all of them, or fix none of them.

In other issues: If there was ever a debate on what caused the doors to open: this episode proves it’s not weight on the floor, but motion activation.

Also, what is more impressive: the anti-grav hover units (which can be assumed exist, seeing as we see them in TMP, which in Trek canon, takes place only a few years after this) or the anti-grav carrying units seen in this episode, which presumably create a loaclized pocket which significantly reduces the effect of the ships artifical gravity?


“BluRay is doomed”

and how is that? BluRay is taking the market by storm and is the far superior format. Do you have any evidence to support your theory?

I was worried that they werent gonna hide the wires.

They did NOT hide the strings in “Where no man has gone before” when Gary makes the cup of water come to him (they’re glaringly obvious on the standard def version of the DVD)

I really hate that CBS digital isnt even bothering with some stuff that really needs fixing like the visible strings in “Where no man…”, blank viewscreen in “Enemy Within” and untouched matte in “Gamesters of Triskelion” What else are they gonna carelessly ignore?

“That unit is defective. Its thinking is chaotic. Absorbing it unsettled me.”
“That ‘unit’ is a woman.”
“A mass of conflicting impulses.”

I could never figure out exactly why, but I’ve always liked that episode very much… :)

31. OR Coast Trekkie

“But even these minimal effects episodes need some love too, and fixing hand phasers is a nice touch.”

I totally agree with you OR Coast Trekkie. I know that we are told the effects were an after thought to this remastering and that’s why the budget has not been there to give these guys the time to do more, but you have to ask why where the effects just an afterthought? Its been talked about by fans for years and It seemed obvious to me.

I would love to see this done again. Maybe if Blue – Ray wins out CBS will go back and look at more improvements? Maybe that’s just wishful thinking. but I would love to see some more time and love given to the effects for each episode. I say it all the time …”fix all those phasers” , ” I love to see the Static Display screens on the bridge do something” and “why have they left that matt painting alone” etc etc..

The truth is there is so much more that could be done IF they were given the time and money. It seems to be this project has been rushed and done on the cheap, just to turn about a quick profit, which is a great shame.

I don’t mean that I have found all the efforts by CBS Digital bad, far from it. I have enjoyed some of the work, like “Doomsday” Journey to Babel” and Amok Time” but even when watching those episodes I have thought I wish they could have done more to the little things.

I love TOS and enjoy it in its original form on DVD over and over so I don’t need the new effects to make me watch it, the stories do that for themselves but I would still love to see it and own a version of it where it’s been updated, effects wise, to the highest standard possible today.

Give this remastering a big budget and some decent art direction, make the most of the space shots and remaster all the dated effects, add little touches, like making those chucky pads they right on a touch screen and displaying data, lots of little touches like that would be worth it for HD DVD. I guarantee more younger people who can’t look past the effects of this show would start watching. Plus it would be so much fun to see.

I know this isn’t going to happen any time soon and to some extend I still enjoy seeing what CBS D has done each week. I just wish this whole project could have been more than what we have ended up with..

For my money, the teaser and first act of this episode are one of the high watermarks of Star Trek. The writing, direction, the editing, the MUSIC! (even if it’s tracked, it’s tracked superbly!), the performances are all first rate. There are few other sequences in which the show achieved such a peak level of tension – although the last act of “The Doomsday Machine” is equally fine.

#27 – spockboy – “Did anyone notice(after Nomad blew up) that Kirk looked right at the camera before the extremely awkward fade to the Enterprise?”

Because of the New SFX being added the fade is much quicker than the original.
In the original, Shatner looks to the camera and fades out even though he appears to be speaking. What did he say? – – – “Listen about that Bacon … no really!” – – – referring to the bad bacon served on set earlier that morning. “That bacon is really bad it just stays with you the whole day.” – found earlier in the ST Blooper Reel. Review and put the two scenes within the Blooper Reel together.

Wow! Surprised at disdain for this episode! One of my favourites actually.

And the Spock affirmative reply to Kirk’s – you didn’t I had it in me did you? comment is worth the episode alone.

The adventure continues…

The ball is..Bluu…..Bl.Bluu…Blu-E Ray?

Blue Ray=Betamax same destiny.

#22 and #30:

If you would LISTEN to some of the quieter dialogue in these shows instead of watching for the special effects and action, then you’d know why the episode was called “The Changeling.” Spock, after his mindmeld with Nomad, is telling Kirk how the original Nomad probe, launched from earth, was damaged in space, then encountered an alien probe of great power (Tan Ru) and together they repaired each other and merged into the “new” Nomad. And now this new Nomad is returning to Earth.

Kirk then remarks that this is like the old legend of the changeling—where fairies (with their awesome magical powers) would steal a human baby and replace it with a fairy baby, to take the human baby’s place.

Makes perfect sense and it’s a decent analogy.

Or, one might have simply looked this up somewhere in an encyclopedia or even a dictionary to get your answer.

Come on kids, start thinking.

The effects on Doomsday Machine were excellent–but they chopped out one of the best lines of the episode–where Spock says, “Vulcans never bluff.” How could they chop that out?

39: Yeah, because Betamax out sold VHS every single week like Blu Ray outsells HD DVD.

“I am not Nomad, I am a similiar device known as Monad. I should destroy you for that, but I’ll give you a Mulligan this time.”


HD-DVD is going to DIE!
Did you see their Superbowl commercial? If you were one of the few who got to see it because they paid stations to air the spot locally rather than nationally (shows how much money they’ve got), they aired it in standard defination.
Do they not want people to see how the picture is suppost to look?
GO BLU-RAY! The ONLY choice.

One thing I always disliked in this episode is how lightly Uhura’s memory wipe is taken. Her whole life up to this episode is gone… but in the space of that hour, she relearns everything and is back doing her job. Silly. What about her identity? She consists only of what she does for a living, and when she relearns YEARS of knowledge in a few hours, she’s fine? WHAT THE…?

I just pretend that they said “she has a short-term memory loss” and let it go. But it was sloppy writing and short-changed the character. All she is, is “Hailing frequencies open.”

– If you would LISTEN to some of the quieter dialogue in these shows instead of watching for the special effects and action, then you’d know why the episode was called “The Changeling. –

Exactly. As much as I appreciate the remastered episodes myself, people shouldn’t forget about the fact that TOS got iconic without benefiting from elaborated special effects, but from giving us wonderful character interacting, great storytelling, and subtle dialogues.

During “Turnabout Intruder” just before Scotty & McCoy discuss the procedings in the briefing room, there is a shot of the Enterprise from below/front with very dramatic music. The ship is slightly nose-up and is ‘sliding’ forward. It’s a great shot, one of the clearer opticals.

That’s a shot I think looks great and should be reproduced EXACTLY. But I’m not seeing a lot of that, sure some shots are close, but viewing angles are changed. I didn’t see this episode, but in the article, Anthony says the ext. opticals are “shot for shot”. Which, I think they should do with some of the better visually composed shots.

I’m glad for the upgrades, but sometimes the original shots are fine as they are. Anyone at CBS-D reading….?

Nomad rocks. ‘Nuff said.

So does anyone else think the Enterprise could really take the pounding described in the opening of this episode? We’re told each one of Nomad’s blasts is equal to *ninety* photon torpedoes…and Enterprise takes *three* of these! That’s like getting hit with 270 photon torpedoes!!

I don’t envy the people at CBS Digital, because no matter what they do, some so-called “fan” is going to bitch about it. “You’ve gone too far; you’re raping my childhood!” “You didn’t go far enough; why did you even bother?!!” Not to mention the ones who’ll scream to the high hills if even one of the warp nacelles is 1/96th of an inch lower than the other.