Star Trek (1966–1969)
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Return to Tomorrow 

The Enterprise is guided to a distant, long-dead world where survivors of an extremely ancient race - existing only as disembodied energy - desiring the bodies of Kirk, Spock and astro-biologist Ann Mulhall so that they may live again.



(created by), (as John Kingsbridge)

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Episode complete credited cast:
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From a planet bereft of life for half a million years, the Enterprise hears the voice of Sargon, who is able to control the ship and tells them to transport to specific coordinates which target them to a subterranean chamber. The away party consisted of Kirk, Spock, McCoy and astro-biologist Ann Mulhall; the security guards they planned to take along were prevented from de-materializing. Sargon is one of only three survivors of the planet's intelligent race - pure energy, matter without form. They tell the away party that they once started life on Earth and many other places. Suddenly Sargon possesses Kirk's body, saying he requires Spock and Ann Mulhall's bodies, too, in order to give the only other survivors of his race new life. He promises the bodies will be returned after they build superior mechanical robots as their definitive bodies, then leaves Kirk's and allows them to beam up and freely make up their minds. McCoy isn't tempted by curiosity and potential benefits, but Kirk ... Written by KGF Vissers

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Release Date:

9 February 1968 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This takes place in 2268. See more »


Although there are inconsistencies on this matter, it is generally accepted that when beaming down from the transporter room it is necessary to be standing directly on the plates in the floor. In "Tomorrow is Yesterday", Spock takes Captain Christopher by the arm and points to the plate to get him positioned correctly, but in "The Savage Curtain", no one notices that President Lincoln is not positioned correctly on the plate, yet he successfully beams down anyway. In this episode the two security guards are not standing fully on their plates and indeed neither of them beam down - although the reasoning for this is that Sargon does not want them to do so. The other possibility is that the security guards stood where they did was to make it easier for the post-production staff to insert the transporter effects, without having to deal with the difficulties of fading the four principles out, while retaining the arms/bodies of the security guards behind the four that transported. See more »


Capt. Kirk: That's twice you referred to us as "my children."
Sargon: Because it is possible you are our descendants, Captain Kirk. Six thousand centuries ago, our vessels were colonizing this galaxy, just as your own starships have now begun to explore that vastness. As you now leave your own seed on distant planets, so we left our seed behind us. Perhaps your own legends of an Adam and an Eve were two of our travelers.
Ann Mulhall: Our beliefs and out studies indicate that life on our planet Earth evolved independently.
Mr. Spock: That...
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Referenced in Criminal Minds: The Big Game (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

Risk is our business
8 June 2016 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

The episode has some run-of-the mill elements and a rather far- fetched premise as some pointed out, but to me stands out as what Star Trek does best: showing the joys, potentials, difficulties and dangers of space exploration.

Faced with a dilemma to decide if Kirk, Spock and astrobiologist Ann Mulhall should lend their bodies to a superadvanced alien race, a remarkable roundtable discussion takes place. Dr McCoy's objections are warranted and well expressed, but a final centerpiece speech by Kirk explains the risks and rewards of flight, space flight, sciences and alien encounter. He states "Risk is our business" in a well written and delivered plea. One of the best staff briefing scene in all of Star Trek, I would even say.

The rest of the episode deals with the concepts of awareness, android, consciousness, love, loyalty, life and eternity. All relevant philosophical themes and all explored very well in the limited time. A very satisfying episode that grows and culminate exquisitely.

Robot romance? much more in store for the viewers!

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