Series: Star Trek: The Original Series
Season, Episode #,and Episode Name: Season 1, Episode 27, “Errand of Mercy” and Episode 28, “The Alternative Factor”
Setting the Stage: I started at 8:00 pm on January 10, 2020, still watching via Netflix, so I’m using their viewing order. Professor Zoom, Tempura, and Thor were present for both episodes. My husband watched the first episode and then had some other things to do so he left me to the second episode.
I notice when I’ve had a long day at work, or I get a late start, that two episodes is more than enough for me. While I had hoped to get three and three done and thus have finished Season 1 tonight, it didn’t happen. I also am unsure if I’ll be able to watch any Star Trek on Saturday as we’re having a very delayed birthday party for me… so we’ll see if I am able to post tomorrow. I also think I might change the format up a bit for Season 2 and beyond. Is there anything you would like to see?
Quick Summary with my reactions: “Errand of Mercy” is the first time I have heard the Klingons mentioned. They do not appear physically the same as the Klingons I have seen, my husband assures me I’ll find out why when I watch Enterprise… great. Kirk makes a big deal to Sulu about his duty to the Enterprise and not to Kirk and Spock before the latter two men beam down, only to be trapped on the planet with the strange Organians while the Klingons start their occupation. It’s the Federation versus the Klingon Empire, but wait… the Organians are essentially Vorlons! Okay so yes, Babylon 5 came after Star Trek and it’s the other way around, but since I watched Babylon 5 first and it’s my blog, you’ll just have to live with it. The Organians are opposed to violence and force a truce while Kirk realizes he was arguing for a war he was really against.
“The Alternative Factor” opens with two strange pulses that not only emanate throughout the galaxy, but also apparently create life on the planet below. This Lazarus dude is super weird, and we have the first of several ridiculously long fight sequences in a weird white light space. Apparently Lazarus is two people, matter and anti-matter. This reminds me a bit of Michael Korvac from Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, but I don’t really know why I’m just instantly reminded of that particular episode. And now we get to it, Lazarus is a damn time traveler… calling Dr. Who (I have also never watched an episode of Dr. Who, maybe that will be my 2021 project). Is this a Crisis on Infinite Earths type thing? Kirk tries to help make sure that the two Lazaruses do not meet so as to avoid all of life exploding… so he traps the two men in the warp area and the Enterprise moves on to its next adventure.
My Impressions: In “Errand of Mercy” I find it interesting how we again hear Kirk telling whoever he is leaving in charge that the duty is to the ship and not the landing party. Kirk completely understands how many people are under his command and he is unwilling to risk the lives of every person on board in order to save him or anyone else who goes to investigate their latest problem. It’s a theme I’ve noticed over the course of several episodes and it’s really highlighted here in the discussion between Sulu and Kirk. It’c clear everyone loves the Captain and would do anything for him, but his responsibility is so much larger. Also in full effect this episode is the “Shatner comma” with the speech pattern that he is best known for. The Klingons in this episode all look like they stepped out of Afghanistan and not an alien planet, or at least not the Klingons I am most familiar with. The only one who looks different is the leader, but I guess that was the point?
In “The Alternative Factor” Spock calls Lazarus a liar in the best way ever, and I’m still laughing about the exchange. I had also almost all but forgotten about McCoy, who wasn’t in the previous episode, until he was called on to care for Lazarus. He’s not really my favorite character, but he does give some good sassy dialogue. he ridiculously long fight sequences just seemed to fill up time and the pacing of this episode is SO SLOW. Kirk talks about leaping, and I’m instantly reminded that my husband needs to watch all of Quantum Leap with me, but I digress. Hopefully I’ll be back tomorrow or Sunday with the last two episodes of Season 1!