Star Trek: Season 3, Episode 21

The Cloud Minders (28 Feb. 1969)

TV Episode  |   |  Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 777 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 4 critic

Kirk and Spock are caught up in a revolution on a planet where intellectuals and artists live on a utopian city in the sky while the rest of the population toils in mines on the barren surface below.



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Episode complete credited cast:
Kirk Raymond ...
Cloud Guard #1 (as Kirk Raymone)
Jimmy Fields ...
Cloud Guard #2
Ed Long ...
Troglyte Prisoner
Harv Selsby ...
Cloud Guard #3


In order to save an inhabited planet from being destroyed by a botanical plague, the Enterprise goes to pick up zenite, the mineral cure, on the only known planet where it is mined. When Kirk and Spock beam down, they are attacked by 'troglites' (troglodyte miners) but not captured. High council adviser Plasus intervenes and brings them to Stratos, a luxurious metropolis which literally floats in the sky. However, it is under attack from 'disruptors', troglite revolutionaries who want equal life conditions for their peers. They do all the hard work, mainly toiling miserably in mines and dwell in caves on the barren surface below. Dr. McCoy ascertains that the alleged intellectual inferiority of the troglites is not genetic but the reversible effect of exposure to an invisible gas emitted by the zenite. Written by KGF Vissers

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Release Date:

28 February 1969 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This takes place in 2269. See more »


Plasus rules as a cruel dictator over Ardana, suspending civil liberties and hoarding resources. This is contrary to the justice- and fairness-oriented ways of the United Federation of Planets. As Ardana is part of the Federation, the Prime Directive does not apply in the matter. Plasus is a criminal and Kirk & Spock are officers of the law. They waste valuable time negotiating and working out deals with Plasus when they have a legal obligation to arrest him and return the hoarded resources to their rightful owners. See more »


Vanna: We're sealed in!
Captain James T. Kirk: Completely.
Vanna: But soon the atmosphere will go. We'll die!
Captain James T. Kirk: Die form something that can't be seen? You astound me, Vanna.
See more »


Featured in William Shatner's Star Trek Memories (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

Kirk seems to have met his match in strength.....
28 November 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This story starts out quite intriguing as the Enterprise, en-voyage to assist a neighboring fleet with diminishing supplies of Zeonite gas (similar to Earth's Oxygen), takes a necessary detour to a nearby planetary civilization well-known for its Zeonite gas-mining corporation: alias, the Troglytes. Upon arrival, Kirk & Spock are seemingly unwelcomed as they wander the grounds, looking for their party, and then are suddenly attacked by the vengeful Troglyte workers, determined to prevent any further Zeonite distribution, in reference to their ongoing slave-trade stand-off against the Collosal.

Kirk is faced-off with a certain female Troglyte: Vanna; the co-leader. And finally appears to have met his match in strength. Their combat struggle is most interesting, as neither appear to gain the upper-hand during what I consider one of the few most interesting fight scenes - especially with a female combatant. Later, Kirk & Spock meet the planetary Commissioners, including the princess daughter - whom Spock takes a sincere (and fully human) romantic interest in, while Vanna; the female Troglyte, encounters Kirk. Again, in the twill and rumble of what would normally be a typical moment of Kirk-passion, we have yet another female enemy not succumbed under his powers of love and seduction. That's particularly what most intrigued me about this episode. Although sadly, the actress, and character she plays, are one-time-only - this episode plays out just enough love-hate/ sexual tension to satisfy most any Trek fan.

I was most intrigued by Kirk's change in testosterate attitude, when facing against Vanna. Her character is so tense, stubborn, strong-willed, and yet undeniably feminine, and yet - she does not simply give-in to Kirk's usually romancing, seductive charms.

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