Review 20 - Episode 21
The One where the Enterprise goes back in time.
This episode was flirting with a top score for the 1st 2 thirds, but the slightly wacky time travel logic and some silly comedy moments mean it's not quite there. But that doesn't mean this is a bad episode. Far from it, this is one of the highlights of the season.
In probably the best teaser I've seen so far, we see earth in the 60's at an airforce base when what what pops up, but the Enterprise flying through the sky. No real believable explanation is given as to how they got here, but if you can swallow the simple fact that they're back in time, them the story works well.
Having to beam Christopher aboard, the crew accidentally change time and have to work out a way of getting him back and also protect the future. I had to laugh at Kirk giving him a guided tour of the bridge without it even occurring to him that he should really be hiding this technology from him. Also, and this is a running theme throughout the series, the lack of security for 'guests' aboard the Enterprise is ridiculous and comes across as daft a lot of times.
For me, the real highlight here was the beautifully crafted dialogue between Kirk, Spock and McCoy. Genuine laugh out loud material and so watchable when they're on screen together. Sulu also has a lot of screen time as does Uhura, and Scotty is given some good lines in the engine room as he states the obvious question of where on earth do they go if they're trapped in the past. I also loved the sultry female computer and Kirks reactions to it. There's actually a feel of ST IV to this episode and not just the slingshot round the sun. The comedy and different tasks the crew have to do are great and all the regulars have a decent scene.
The episode dipped slightly in the final 3rd when a 2nd guard is beamed up and played solely for comedy and also a ridiculous fight with Kirk and 3 guards. It just suddenly seems to descend into a western fist fight. The worst part is the bizarre logic of beaming the the two 60's earthmen back into their bodies of their old selves one day prior with suddenly no memory of whats going on. It just makes no sense, even though I can just about buy the way the Enterprise get home.
This is an excellent episode, only let done by a weak final act , but well worth watching
Overall Star Trek Franchise Rating so far: 59/105
Up next: The Return of the Archons - No idea. Doesn't ring any bells.