Review 53 - Episode 54
The One with the American planet
Quite a strange episode this. It starts interestingly as Kirk finds the USS Exeter in orbit round a planet with it's crew dissolved. They beam down and find they're infected and can't leave, but Captain Tracey has violated the prime directive. It then turns out that the planet is actually a parallel world that has a stars and stripes flag and is basically old America!!
I mean, WTF is going on here. I've never seen an episode change storys so fast in my life and not in a good way. The virus story, while similar to Miri, has been done before but is interesting, as is the prime directive violation. If he thought he was going to die, then Kirk may have used his phaser as well. Tracey's too much of a villain to have any grey areas though, so it's never really developed.
Then this crazy story comes in about Yankees and the constitution, on an alien planet, and no one seems interested? What's more shocking is that this was considered for a pilot!! Spock's mind controlling is too powerful and thankfully never seen again.
It's all over the shop this episode and not very good. The basic banter between the trio and the 1st half save it from total disaster.
Overall Star Trek Franchise Rating so far: 158/265