Star Trek (1966–1969)
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Shore Leave 

The past three months has left the crew of the Enterprise exhausted and in desperate need of a break, but does this explain McCoy's encounter with a human-sized white rabbit or Kirk ... See full summary »



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Episode complete credited cast:
Emily Banks ...
Tonia Barrows
Oliver McGowan ...
Bruce Mars ...
Barbara Baldavin ...
Marcia Brown ...
Sebastian Tom ...
Shirley Bonne ...


The past three months has left the crew of the Enterprise exhausted and in desperate need of a break, but does this explain McCoy's encounter with a human-sized white rabbit or Kirk crossing paths with the prankster who plagued his days at Starfleet Academy? Written by Steve Green

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Release Date:

29 December 1966 (USA)  »

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Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Editor Fabien D. Tordjmann came up with the idea of having Finnegan continue to pop out of nowhere as Kirk pursues him. This gave the impression that there was more than one Finnegan or, at least, that he was not quite Human. See more »


When Kirk notices Ruth, the tiger can be heard growling in the background, even though it shouldn't be in this scene at all. See more »


Finnegan: Always fight fair, don't ya, you officer and gentleman, you? You stupid underclassman, I've got the edge. I'm still 20-years-old. Look at you! Heh. You're an old man.
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Referenced in Star Trek: The Animated Series: Once Upon a Planet (1973) See more »


Theme From Star Trek
Written by Alexander Courage
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User Reviews

Viewed in context, Shore Leave succeeds
11 March 2007 | by (Vulcan) – See all my reviews

Bogmeister and others have pretty much nailed this. Shore Leave is really TOS' first attempt at lightweight sci-fi (which they would later perfect with the classic Trouble with Tribbles). It gave both the crew of the Enterprise and its TV viewers a needed respite from the universe threatening consequences of, for example, The Corbomite Manouever.

Looking for a place to chill out for a while, the Enterprise happens across a seemingly idyllic M Class planet, and sends an exploratory team down to take a closer look. Soon enough all kinds of absurdities begin to take place - some seemingly perilous - but it all seems a morass of human emotional extremities played out in a weird blend of fantastic mystery (McCoy has gone through the looking glass), psychological thriller (Kirk is stalked by an indefatigable bully from his past), and romantic comedy (no comment).

TOS was the least serialized of all of the series in the Trek franchise, so it is easy to forget how many episodes in the first season focused on heavy-handed, potentially calamitous drama. Unlike later series franchise writers, TOS' production team was not afraid to literally go where no TV series had gone before. And Shore Leave, despite its occasional problems, is an example. My only criticism of this episode is that the cast (particularly Shatner - ironic given his legendary sense of humor) didn't seem to know how to handle this new wrinkle on ST's themes. The last scene is possibly one of the worst scenes I can remember from the entire TOS run - both compositionally and in terms of acting.

'nuff said. My recommendation - see it while watching the entire first season as it was meant to be seen - it order.

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