Review: Star Trek Continues’ Come Not Between the Dragons

The Star Trek Continues crew has come out with their sixth episode, Come Not Between the Dragons. STC as a production continues to battle it out with New Voyages for setting the bar on production quality, and this episode is no different in that respect. It’s a more intimate episode, with the action effectively only on board the Enterprise, which expresses the level of confidence that the writers are putting in their cast to carry the episodes rather than on extended SFX or away missions.

The episode opens with the Enterprise finding out that the USS Lexington has been scuttled, leaving the Federation with a mere handful of starships remaining. A few beats later and an apparent meteorite traveling at near light speed has impacted and breached the hull. As damage reports begin to come in, it becomes clear that the ship has been boarded, and Ensign Elize Taylor (player by Farscape’s Gigi Edgely) encounters the alien intruder in her quarters. As the crew struggles to communicate with the apparently-stone creature (think of a smaller by chunky version of Gorignak from Galaxy quest, with an amazing creature design & costume by) the creature begins to influence the emotions of the ship’s crew. Spock is the most impacted, going into a full rage, with the rest of the crew becoming violent and suspicious of everyone around them. From there the story unfolds as they try to deal with the invader before they kill each other.

Fans of the various original series will recall how it took a while for the show to find it’s groove, and solidly in the groove is where the cast and crew of STC currently resides. The episode is polished, well made, and has progressively more of the genuine feeling of a late 1st season/2nd season TOS episode. The acting is more balanced all around, and great guest stars like Gigi helps to up everyone’s game. The various name characters seem to be evolving into more of the various actor’s own takes on their characters rather than the more straightforward impersonations of the first episodes. It’s that comfortable in their own character’s skins evolution which continue to make the episodes feel more genuine (as it was with their prior episode 5: Divided We Stand).

Early on it was mentioned that the series is very much a group of fan’s homage to their love of the original series. Now it’s less of that homage, and more of making it their own and adding onto that original show’s legacy. A special commendation for this episode must go to Greg Dykstra (no relation to John Dykstra) and Distortions Unlimited for the making of the alien creatures in this episode. It’s easily the most original (and best) alien design of any of the independent Trek projects that have yet come along, and would have easily fit into the original TOS or TNG. Plus, I love any time that Trek has an alien that’s not just a facial prosthetic.

Watch an interview with Greg on the making of the monster below.

If there’s any particular weakness to this latest episode, it’s more in some of the writing and construction. The initial scene with the discussion of the Lexington, and the Federation only having 8 ships remaining would rather be a big deal, is never touched on again. The way it’s introduced into the episode, the viewer is always wondering if the aliens are somehow tied into it’s destruction, but it’s just left hanging after that first scene – and why one would scuttle a ship being hit by a plasma jet while studying an accretion disk? If it’s not being hit by enemies, and not already destroyed – rescue the crew and tow the ship to dock. The episode’s moral message also is a bit more contrived than one might have expected from STC’s writers (that the alien would be able to directly relate to Eliza’s childhood experiences and translate them to it’s own situation was the roughest part of the episode).

Yea, the “aliens control/affect the crew causing them to act atypically,” is an oft-used Trek trope, however this is very much TOS-Trek, so that as a storyline is not out of character. There’s a desire to see modern writing applied to STC episodes, but then that would probably change the tone and flavor too much off of what they’re trying to achieve. The episode isn’t the greatest, it’s not the most riveting, but it’s good. It’s solid. It feels like you’re watching one of those 2nd season episodes – not I, Mudd, A Piece of the Action, or Trouble with Tribbles – but rather more like By Any Other Name, or the Deadly Years; at the end of it you’ll find that you’ve enjoyed it, and are looking forward to where they go next.

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I thought it was terrific. Loved the focus on the unaffected junior officers in the 2nd Act trying to implement their plan before the temporarily deranged Kirk can stop them.

On the one hand, I loved many things about the episode. I’m a clinical psychologist in real life, and I’ve counseled a lot of abuse survivors over the years, so I was thrilled to see a TOS episode with a message telling abusive parents to work on getting better. I thought the guest star playing Ensign Taylor knocked it out of the park; her performance at the end was astounding.

I loved the rock creature with the color changing segments, and I loved watching Smith be a badass; one of the great things about STC is how it undoes the sexism that plagued TOS. I thought most of the regulars did a good job with the descent into irrational anger (reminiscent of “Day of the Dove.”)

Although I thought the guest star did a great job, and although I think it’s great that STC finally shows female crew members having an actual effect on things, my heart really belongs to Kirk, Spock, and McCoy, since they were the main characters of TOS. This is the second episode in a row where the most important actions were taken not by any of the Big Three but by a brand-new character. In this episode, it was Ensign Taylor who did pretty much everything that was important. In “Divided We Stand,” it was some nurse who had the important realization about how to get Kirk and McCoy back (not even CHAPEL — it was a “Nurse Burke,” whoever she is).. In this episode, it felt as if Kirk, Spock, and McCoy flailed around and did stuff but were ultimately ineffective; the people who did things that actually WORKED were McKenna and Taylor.

I like seeing effective female characters, so I feel bad about saying this, but I want to see Kirk or Spock save the day, not Some New Ensign. When Kirk and McCoy were out of it in “Divided We Stand,” I wanted to see SPOCK figure things out, not M’Benga and Some Nurse I Never Heard Of.

I thought there were a whole lot of wonderful things about this episode, but I found it ultimately unsatisfying, because none of our familiar TOS heroes were allowed to BE heroes; the heroes were McKenna and Taylor.

The STC people do a fabulous job with the sets, costumes, acting, special effects and so on; their only real weakness is in their writing. I wish that all of that time, care and attention were being lavished on slightly better scripts.

As a counterpoint, the development of the minor characters (Smith, Taylor, McKenna, as well as Uhura) was a reason why I really liked the episode. That’s always been a reason why I’ve enjoyed TNG, DS9, and ENT more than TOS — you got a sense that this was a *crew*, not just three people running a starship (particularly on DS9). And yes, Edgely gave a riveting performance, equal to any of the professional Trek shows, if you ask me.

Very good episode .My problem with this series is replacing the Shat,Nimoy and the rest , I find it difficult to watch. I know ,dumb. If Vic could have just invented a brand new series (Star Trek) based on nothing before, this might be the big thing on the internet. But you can’t fight someone who loves what he is doing ,my hat off to you Vic.

Loved this episode. Found myself feeling like I was watching an episode of TOS that I missed somehow.

Keep up the great work!


Many STC eps “feel” like the better of TOS third season episodes. This was one.


I agree with the person who said Unknown Nurse should be Chapel instead.

And I, too, loved the character Eliza. A bit “broken” but able to compassionately reach out to a different being. XCLNT. Hope she can appear in another episode.

Loved this episode. An interesting alien mystery, a powerful message, and wonderful to hear an Australian accent on Star Trek. Aussie Aussie Aussie. Felt very much like a good TOS episode to me.

I wonder why the misquote of Lear.

Because “Come not between the dragon and his wrath” would make too long of a title.

Loved Gigi in the episode. Wish her character weren’t as dour and somber. But she’s stellar as an actor.

Gigi Edgley is an amazing actress!

This is SO MUCH BETTER than crap like Axanar.

Nicely done and it was great in its own right. Comfortable, nothing to take you out of the drama. Good acting, loved the music. Very innovative script of the kind of story not possible today. The only down side was the plot of the story: interesting but clearly not written or developed by a father. Sometimes, children are unruly and run away rather than face the music. A man’s job is to raise his boys into men, not indulge him. That’s why the Kirk character was so powerful and speaks to us fifty years later: a skipper is married to his ship, she is his wife. The crewmen are his children. He sets the example, he maintains faith and never shows fear or weakness, and, when needed, administers discipline so they all live to see the next day. So it is for a father that truly loves his boy. Thankfully, it wasn’t too overplayed but it was the only bit of disfunctional 21st C. Special Snowflake culture to intrude and for that I am both grateful and delighted. Hat’s off STC. God bless you for keeping the faith.

Wow, I’ve seen a lot of toxic waste spewed on TrekMovie, but I’ve never seen anything so troubling as this. Defending a father beating his son because “children are unruly”?

Seek help, dude. Seriously. SEEK HELP. And God save your poor children.


And your post is one of the greatest over-reactions to someone’s opinion that I have ever seen on Trekmovie.

Ignorant virtue signalling is no substitute for manly responsibility. It’s Billy Mumy’s character from the Twilight Zone, come to life.


@Kirk is a …..
The problem I have with your statement is that the father “Dragon” was filled with rage that was so strong it transmitted itself through the Enterprise officers.

Rage is not appropriate to discipline. A proper father may feel rage, but does not impose punishment while he is feeling it. He waits until he is in a more rational mindset. (That, of course, would have affected the storyline.) A child may be terrified of punishment for its own reasons, or run bc it knows it deserves some form of punishment, sure. But to face a parent’s rage? Running is perfectly rational in that case.

I think Marja’s right.

@Prodigal And your post is one of the greatest advocations of felonious activity I’ve ever seen on Trekmovie.

Men don’t rage at their children. Pathetic little wimps do that. Grow up.

8 & 1/2 out of 10 Halflings. It was a really, really good production.

~Pensive’s Wetness

Very well done, if not without a few bumps. I wwonder if the mention of being down to eight starships will pay off in a future ep. The very early TOS eps emphasized how outmatched humanity and friends are for the vast wilderness of space, hence the conscious decision “to boldly go” with what resources we could muster. Wish TOS had never invented subspace radio or ‘ludicrous speed’ that got the crew to new planets in hours instead of weeks. Also — budget permitting, would love to have seen Scotty heading up repairs to the hull. Also — MORE GIGI!

Have now watched this twice and overall one of the better Star Trek fan films done, including the STC library ..
The young girl Elize (Gigi) done an absolute fantastic job, Hollywood quality …
The store line leaked somewhat, but held together enough to keep the episode together – thought the shockwave thing might have been overdone too much … The editing mistake with Scotty’s voice over the intercom before Uhura and the girls had fully done the voice conversion (next cut) by the computer seemed odd but was forgivable … The rock creature was well thought out and worked great (where was this designer when Bill was directing “Star Trek The Final Frontier”, he’d had his rock creatures to fight) including the name Usdi – who now has a fan base himself …
The only part which could have used some real polish was the final rounds where Kirk and Spock discover a connection between the abused young Eliza by her father and the creature abilities to attach himself to her emotions…
Overall a very good and enjoying episode, check another box for Star Trek Continues …

I agree, solid, but not the best. The writing has a few holes that just don’t work, but if you bridge those gaps with your understanding of these characters, the whole thing works.

Congratulations to all involved. Story had as others have mentioned, a few bumps, but this was a very solid entry in this fine series.

The production values are so good, the editing so tight, the acting so consistent, that I forgot I was watching a fan production for a moment in the middle of it.

I agree that the thematic statement at the end is a bit muddled, but Gigi Edgley’s performance is so strong and touching that it rescues the message and the episode. I’ve really come to appreciate the STC style of waiting until the very end to give you the payoff of the story—i.e. what it all means. This payoff isn’t the best of the STC episodes, but it’s not the worst, either. I’d rank it somewhere in the middle. Certainly better than “Divided We Stand,” which from what I can tell is a meaningless story.

The production values on this episode are especially good. It’s not easy to have a man in a monster suit at the center of the show and not have it take you out of the scene by its ridiculousness, but this episode pulls it off without a hitch.

I’ve really come to enjoy the performances, the way that the actors are not imitating their TOS counterparts, but rather have made the characters all their own. Definitely looking forward to the next episode!

Doesn’t it bother anyone that no one in this series can act?

Don’t know what you’re talking about. The acting in this episode is solid all around.

I posted a comment critical of the acting in this series. The comment was not posted. Are only positive comments allowed?

Almost all the main cast and guest stars are professional Hollywood actors, including ones from the actual Star Trek. There’s a significant disconnect between what you’re saying and the reality of the situation. You might need to rethink what you’re saying, or take some courses in film/TV criticism.

Just finished watching the episode now and it was amazing ! It was just as good as the top TOS episodes out there. Hope to see more, even with the CBS/Paramount draconic “guidelines”