Star Trek: Season 1, Episode 28

The City on the Edge of Forever (6 Apr. 1967)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
9.3
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Ratings: 9.3/10 from 1,619 users  
Reviews: 24 user | 11 critic

When a temporarily maddened Dr. McCoy alters history and eliminates his time, Kirk and Spock follow him to prevent it, but the price to do so is high.

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Title: The City on the Edge of Forever (06 Apr 1967)

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John Harmon ...
Hal Baylor ...
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David L. Ross ...
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Guardian (voice) (as Bartell La Rue)
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Storyline

When an accident causes Dr. McCoy to go temporarily insane, he escapes to a strange planet. There, the search party discovers a device left by a superior, vanished civilization, a time portal that plays the history of Earth for them - but then Bones jumps through it into the past, causing a change in history important enough to make the Enterprise vanish. Kirk and Spock, who fortunately made a tricorder recording, must attempt to go through to just before McCoy's arrival and stop him from changing history in the US during the Great Depression, where they have no advanced technology available. Written by KGF Vissers

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6 April 1967 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of only two times in the original series that a "curse word" is heard, when Kirk says, "Let's get the hell out of here" at the very end. The second is in Star Trek: The Doomsday Machine (1967), when Kirk sees the Enterprise being drawn into combat with the Machine he says "[What] the hell's going on?". See more »

Goofs

When McCoy arrives in 1930 NY, he believes he is in a fabricated environment and marvels at the detail of reconstruction. As he leans on a column less than 6 inches in diameter he remarks on the detail, "...even down to the cement columns." implying the free-standing column he is leaning on is made of cement. Clearly, the size and texture of the column would make it metal. A free-standing street column also would suggest a utility pole, none of which would be made of cement. See more »

Quotes

Edith Keeler: [to Kirk] I still have a few questions I'd to ask about you two. Oh, and don't give me that "Questions about little old us?" look. You know as well as I do how out of place you two are around here.
Spock: Interesting. Where would you estimate we belong, Miss Keeler?
Edith Keeler: [to Spock] You? At his side, as if you've always been there and always will.
Edith Keeler: [to Kirk] And you... you belong... in another place.
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Referenced in Star Trek: Of Gods and Men (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Probably the best of all...
2 September 2007 | by (ohio, usa) – See all my reviews

This episode has it all, a wonderfully written story, catchy title, superb acting, and an unhappy but necessary ending. I recall this story sticking with me through the end of the first season and into the second. The hallmark of a great story is it's staying power, and "City" certainly has it.

First, the writing. As much controversy there is after the fact as to what Roddenberry did or didn't do with Harlan Ellison's original storyline, the fact remains that it is a dynamite story and incredibly well-crafted for the depth of character development and the continuity of the storyline. What can you say about Ellison as a sci-fi writer that hasn't already been said? The guy is a genius, pure and simple. I simply can't imagine a greater contemporary writer. He is one of a Pantheon of great writers, Heinlein, Bradbury, Clarke. That a series like Star Trek would be able to tap his talents is a real feather in their cap.

Regular actors Shatner, Nimoy, and Kelly deliver perhaps their finest performances of the series in this episode. Shatner doesn't miss a beat in his movement from dispassionate mission achievement to a genuine love interest in the Joan Collins character. And Joan Collins demonstrates here her depth as a serious actress. Her portrayal of compassionate social worker Edith Keeler is spot-on. She isn't just another pretty face, another attractive female for Kirk to conquer. She draws him in with her passion for helping others and her gifted insight into the necessity of forging a better destiny for mankind, one individual at a time. Her tragic fate is a mirror for the seemingly senseless and avoidable tragedies of the 20th century. A person dedicated to the service and well-being of others must die prematurely to prevent a greater tragedy. Certainly the eternal question and mystery of our lifetime.

Anyway, "City" is probably my favorite of many favorite episodes of this classic series. Many thanks to Harlan Ellison and Gene Roddenberry for such a masterful presentation of a great story.


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