Plot: What’s it about?
Episode #69- “That Which Survives” >>> Airdate 1/24/69
Kirk has tangled with some dangerous women before, but perhaps this time, even he can’t handle this broad. On a mission to explore a geologically unstable planet, Kirk, McCoy, Sulu, and D’Amato run into Losira, a beautiful woman with a strange hairdo. As expected, Kirk takes an instant interest, but if he lays his hands on this dame, he’s a dead man. No, she is not an expert in kung-fu or the like, but her touch is lethal, without a doubt. At the same, the Enterprise is launched 1,000 light years off course, which leaves our team stranded with this icy bitch. As Scotty tries to return the Enterprise to normal, can Kirk and the others evade Losira & her venomous ways, or will they all fall prey to her sensuous, but deadly touch?
Just when you think Kirk can nail them all, he runs into a frigid chick like Losira, what a plot twist, eh? I know this one sounds weak, but it isn’t too bad and in terms of Star Trek, that means it is toward the top of the episode rankings. I like Losira and while she comes & goes with this episode, the memories will be with us Trek lovers forever, I can assure you of that. It’s also nice to see some pressure on old Scotty again, as we need to see the lesser characters in the clutch sometimes too, instead of just the man-child Kirk (as played by William “Overbudget” Shatner). This episode is by no means a classic one, but it is better than you might think and as such, I think this volume is worthwhile, if simply for this episode.
Episode #70- “Let That Be Your Last Battlefield” >>> Airdate 1/10/69
A shuttlecrafte has been stolen and by the time Kirk & his crew run across it, it has been damaged and left behind, it would seem. As it turns out, there is someone still on the shuttlecraft, which piques Kirk’s interest, of course. But when Kirk beams aboard the being to have a look, he is face to face with Lokai and this is one strange dude, half black & half white in terms of skin color. He wears a nice shirt and all, but this cat is no looker, that much is for sure. Soon, another half & half gentleman named Bele shows up and demands to take Lokai as his prisoner. Kirk tries to go between the two and pays for it, when Bele assumes control of the Enterprise and threatens to ground it, once and for all. Can our intrepid crew, led by the man-beast Kirk somehow regain control and deliver justice, in a swift & proper measure?
I wasn’t too impressed with this episode, but those half & half guys look cool, which saves this from sinking into the abyss. William “What Me Worry?” Shatner turns in a performance so electric, your tiny little arm hairs will stand on end, from start to finish. As if having Lee Meriweather in the previous episode wasn’t enough, now we have Frank Gorshin, of Tv’s Batman fame on board. I like the premise here, but there isn’t much tension and in the end, this just seems overly recycled in terms of characters & situations. Even so, the half & half guys are a barrel of monkeys and Kirk is great as always, so not all is lost here, but pretty darn close.
Video: How does it look?
The episodes are presented in full frame transfers, just as they were shown on television. As per usual, Paramount has enhanced & remastered the transfers using the most advanced technology known to man, with impressive results. Ok, not that impressive, but for a television show from the 1960s, more than sufficient. The drab colors look drab and that’s intentional, to add to the visual impact of the drab characters & storylines. No issues with contrast either, as black levels are on the mark and the prints look clean also, another round of solid transfers.
Audio: How does it sound?
I have it on authority that the included Dolby Digital 5.1 mixes were encoded using the new Shatnerizer, one of the world’s most complex & effective soundboards. Of course, that’s not true at all, but the end result here is still pretty good. The surround use is rather gimmicky, but then again, so is the series and as such, I think it makes sense. The dialogue is clean and easy to understand, while the overly simplistic theme music is as well presented as possible. This disc also includes English subtitles, in case you’ll need those.
Supplements: What are the extras?
You’ll find promotional trailers for each episode, which will (in the words of our founder, Matt Brighton) knock your socks off. [Editor: Hell Yeah!]