The STAR TREK Top 13 Episode Countdown: #7

PAIN!!!

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Every day between now and 9/8 — the 50th anniversary of Star Trek’s debut — we’re counting down our TOP 13 EPISODES.

For the full STAR TREK Top 13 Episode Countdown INDEX — updated daily with new entries and other features — click here.

Now, #7

The Devil in the Dark

Another great Juan Ortiz poster

Another great Juan Ortiz poster

There are so many classic Trek elements in this one: Misunderstood alien. Cool, subterranean sets. Angry mob that Kirk and co. have to keep at bay. Compelling and scary mystery.

Horta_injured_by_phasers

You know the story: Miners get killed by a mysterious creature. Turns out the creature is a rock monster who’s only protecting her eggs. They all decide to get along. The End.

But it’s all about Spock’s Big Moment, isn’t it?

I tell you, this scene is a Leonard Nimoy tour de force. Think about it: It’s kind of silly, Spock mind-melding with a wounded rock. But Nimoy really sells it by letting it all hang out. We’re so accustomed to his restrained performances that watching him lose it while communicating with the Horta conveys both Spock’s and the creature’s agony.

Plus, we get one of the all-time great Bones “I’m a doctor, not a …” protests:

NEXT: Journey to Babel. Click here.

For the full STAR TREK Top 13 Episode Countdown INDEX — updated daily with new entries and other features — click here.

Author: Dan Greenfield

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1 Comment

  1. Shatner tells the story of finding out during filming of this episode that his father had died and how he decided to finish shooting before flying home. Good story to read.

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