Star Trek: Season 1, Episode 18

Arena (19 Jan. 1967)

TV Episode  |   |  Action, Adventure, Mystery
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 1,291 users  
Reviews: 15 user | 9 critic

For bringing hostility into their solar system, a superior alien race pits Captain Kirk in single combat against the murderous reptilian captain of an alien ship he was pursuing.



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Title: Arena (19 Jan 1967)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Jerry Ayres ...
Lieutenant Kelowitz
Tom Troupe ...
James Farley ...
Lt. Commander Lang
Carolyne Barry ...
Metron (as Carole Shelyne)


When an alien race known as the Gorn destroys an Earth colony, the Enterprise pursues the fleeing Gorn vessel until another race of powerful aliens called the Metrons intervenes and forces Captain Kirk and the Gorn captain to face off in one-on-one combat in which the winner will be released and the loser destroyed along with his ship and crew. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


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Release Date:

19 January 1967 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The colony where the story opens is called Cestus 3, a name which foreshadows the main theme. A cestus was a Roman boxing glove fitted out with deadly weapons such as spikes, and used by gladiators in the arena. See more »


Captain Kirk refers in his log to the Arena planet as an "asteroid" which it clearly isn't. See more »


[first lines]
Captain James T. Kirk: You'll enjoy Commodore Travers. He sets a good table.
Dr. McCoy: I wonder if he brought his personal chef along with him to Cestus III.
Captain James T. Kirk: Probably. Rank hath its privileges.
Dr. McCoy: [they both chuckle] How well we both know that!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The closing credits are set against a combination background of stills from that episode and previous episodes. See more »


Referenced in MythBusters: Mini Myth Mayhem (2009) See more »

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User Reviews

Gorn Fishing!
26 April 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

A convention used frequently is that of setting two opponents against each other, giving them no choice but to fight. The frequent accusations by the more advanced aliens that earth creatures are too violent is often counteracted by their own blood lust. In this episode, Kirk is pitted against the Gorn, a species of lizard man. Perhaps they could have done just a bit of work to animate his jaw, rather than making it look like a Halloween mask. This episode forces Kirk to draw on his knowledge of chemistry and warfare to face the Gorn. As the crew watches the fight continues. They parry and thrust their way. The strength of the episode has to do with lessons learned. McCoy gets in his usual shot at Spock for inaction. He seems to blame him whenever his logic doesn't solve the problem.

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