Star Trek: Season 1, Episode 29

Operation -- Annihilate! (13 Apr. 1967)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 821 users  
Reviews: 10 user | 7 critic

The Enterprise crew attempts to stop a plague of amoeba-like creatures from possessing human hosts and spreading throughout the galaxy.



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Title: Operation -- Annihilate! (13 Apr 1967)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Joan Swift ...
Maurishka ...
Peter Kirk (as Craig Hundley)
Fred Carson ...
First Denevan
Jerry Catron ...
Second Denevan


The Enterprise traces a virus-like outbreak that seems to be traveling in a direct line across a planetary system. The next planet is home to Kirk's brother Sam, his sister-in-law and their young son. The Enterprise arrives too late however for Sam. They find flying jellyfish-like creatures that attach themselves to humans. They take over the victims nervous system forcing them to bend to their will. Spock finds a weapon to use against the creatures but it leaves him hopelessly blind. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


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Release Date:

13 April 1967 (USA)  »

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Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Craig Huxley (Kirk's nephew Peter) reappears in Star Trek: And the Children Shall Lead (1968) as Tommy Starnes. He later became a composer, with a song appearing on the soundtrack of Star Trek III: The Search for Spock (1984). See more »


In the beginning scenes on the bridge after Uhura raises Kirk's sister-in-law, Uhura is not sitting at the communications station which places Spock's science station to her left; Spock's station can be seen in the background to her right which would place her at the navigation sub-station which is to the left of the science station. When she loses Aurelen's signal and Kirk walks away, she is now sitting at her correct station to the right of the science station. See more »


Capt. Kirk: Mr. Spock, regaining eyesight would be an emotional experience for most. You, I presume felt nothing?
Spock: Quite the contrary, Captain, I had a very strong reaction. My first sight was the face of Dr. McCoy bending over me.
Dr. McCoy: Hm, 'tis a pitty brief blindness did not increase your appreciation for beauty, Mr. Spock.
See more »


Spoofed in Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Bad Eggs (1998) See more »

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User Reviews

Freaky Flying Alien Things Kill Kirk's Brother
7 August 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Call them the flying pizza-things from hell. Or the rubbery suckers from another galaxy. But, whatever you do, don't let one of them attach to your back, sticking you with its alien stinger - you'd be in for some painful days. The final episode of the first season is a straight-out action adventure, a crackerjack alien invasion thriller. It starts out strong, with some ominous mystery on the nature of the threat, escalating to far-out alien monster attack mode. Though hampered by the standard cheesy TV SFX of the sixties, you gotta give the storyline some props for coming up with an unusual alien invader: it's basically a huge brain, but each cell is not physically connected

  • each cell flies about on its own, causing havoc. The low budget was

also unable to show thousands of these things flying around, but that's what must have happened on this colony of Deneva (an actual futuristic city on display here, not just a matte painting - zowie!).

There are some clumsy moments in the script and direction as the story jumps along. In one instance, after the landing party hears a woman's scream, Kirk orders everyone to 'fan out!' - but they run grouped close together. But, this is minor compared to some serious lapses in logic later in the episode. Spock, McCoy and everyone in the dozen science labs aboard the starship can't figure out a way to damage these alien suckers after hours of testing, despite being given a great clue by way of the sun; then Kirk idly latches on to a way at the last minute - maybe he was the only one being objective? Then they rush Spock into another test, with Kirk in full agreement, and blind him seconds before McCoy finds out it wasn't necessary. Kirk gives McCoy a 'if-looks-can-kill' stare and stomps out. Incompetence is really spread around in this episode. The writers tried to capitalize on the main trio's established relationship to create some extra tension, but it doesn't really ring true. Even Nurse Chapel becomes uncharacteristically testy during an operation, questioning McCoy on his methods. Well, she did become a doctor herself by the time of "Star Trek-the Motion Picture"(1979).

In a way, the most fitting aspect about this being the last episode of the 1st season is that we're given the only glimpse of Kirk's real family (and its demise), outside the Enterprise. It's not much - Sam Kirk's only appearance is as a corpse and Kirk's sister-in-law dies soon after. Meanwhile, Kirk's nephew remains unconscious the whole time. It would have been nice to see them reunite at the end instead of the now-silly repartee on the bridge, as if Kirk doesn't even remember his dead relatives by this point (contrast this with the superbly grim ending of "The City on the Edge of Forever"). As mentioned, this is strictly alien invasion thrills, no more. Spock ends up with the best scenes, exerting Vulcan control over the obviously intense pain he suffers. I believe this was the only time Shatner played a character other than Jim Kirk or a Kirk-android or a Kirk impostor during this series. Even though the part was very brief, only as a corpse, he seemed to put every actor's effort into the part.

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