While searching for the crew of a destroyed spaceship, the Enterprise discovers a planet whose oppressive government is a 20th-century version of Earth's Roman Empire. Kirk, Spock and McCoy meet the rebels, seemingly sun worshipers, but are soon thereafter apprehended by the regime. The missing Captain Merik is revealed as the "First Citizen" and a pawn of the regime, but he and the rebels ultimately help Kirk and company to escape. Back on the Enterprise, Uhura observes that the crew's understanding of the rebels as sun worshipers was not completely accurate. Written by
Did You Know?
The title "Bread and circuses" is a translation of "Panem et circenses", an ancient Roman metaphor for people choosing food and fun over freedom. It first appears around AD 100 in the Satires of Juvenal
, which also provided the title of another Star Trek production about 20 years later: Star Trek: The Next Generation: Who Watches the Watchers
(1989). See more
During the first fight in the arena, Flavius is struck twice, vigorously, by a bull whip, and yet on subsequent shots from Flavius' rear, there's no evidence of any kind of wound whatsoever on his back, which there surely would have been. See more
You're a Roman, Kirk, or you should have been.
Referenced in Star Trek